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Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of April 24, 2017

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

We are delighted that our children are eager to start school each day.  Please remember that students and families must remain downstairs until 8:23 a.m.  Thank you.

What does it mean to be an activist?  What does activism and social justice look like at TNS?  This past weekend, TNS staff visited The Museum of the City of New York’s “Activist New York” exhibit and The International Center of Photography; both experiences gave us a lot to think about.  I highly encourage you to visit these museums if you have a chance.  Speaking of activism, I hope you will join us on Wednesday from 12 - 4 p.m. in the 4th Street Courtyard for Earth Day.

It’s a busy week at TNS:

  • The Garden Committee meets Monday at drop-off in the small cafeteria.

  • SLT (School Leadership Team) will meet on Tuesday at 8 a.m. in room 301.  This meeting is open to all.

  • We have rescheduled our Town Hall Meeting for Tuesday afternoon from 4 - 4:30 p.m. in the auditorium.   Representatives from the School Construction Authority and Department of Facilities will be there to address questions about lead results in water, construction and safety drills.

  • SING is Wednesday at 8:45am in the auditorium.  We will have a bake sale in the lobby beforehand.

  • TNS and Star are celebrating Earth Day on Wednesday in the 4th Street Courtyard from 12 - 4 p.m.  This is an opportunity for all of us to deepen to our commitment to the environment-please come by!  If it’s raining, we will be in the auditorium.

  • Please join me, TNS families and staff Thursday from 6 - 10 p.m. for the Spring Auction at the Manny Cantor Center (197 East Broadway).  There are many wonderful items up for bids – restaurants, fashion items, classes, camps, fitness– you name it!  And don’t forget to register for free childcare.  Even if you can’t make the Spring Auction Event, you can still get some great deals (and support TNS) at the on-line auction. Check it out: http://tnsny.org/auction.

Warmly,

Dyanthe

Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of April 18, 2017

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

Welcome back!  I hope you enjoyed the break and the beautiful weather...  or perhaps better weather elsewhere (although springtime in NYC is hard to beat!).

Chickens at TNS?!  We will have two very special visitors in our 4th Street side courtyard for a month beginning this Thursday: 2 egg laying hens in a mobile chicken coop.  Most questions about our chickens-in-residence can be answered here:  http://www.RentACoop.com/Chicken-Q-A.html.  Please make sure you ask your children about them; all classes will have a chance to visit.

TNS and Star Academy are celebrating Earth Day next Wednesday, April 26.  Please join us from 12 - 4 p.m.  This is an opportunity for all of us to deepen to our commitment to the environment!  We will have booths from our own fifth graders who are part of the Girls Project and the Boys Project.  We will be joined by the Lower East Side Ecology Center, Good Ol’ Lower East Side (GOLES), LES READY, The Island School, The Billion Oyster Project and more!  

Our biggest fundraiser of year is just over a week away!  Please join me, TNS families and staff next Thursday, April 27th from 6 - 10 p.m. for the Spring Auction at the Manny Cantor Center (197 East Broadway).  There are many wonderful items up for bids – restaurants, fashion items, classes, camps, fitness– you name it!  And don’t forget to register for free childcare.  You can buy your tickets here:  https://www.nycharities.org/Events/EventLevels.aspx?ETID=9621

Even if you can’t make the Spring Auction Event, you can still get some great deals (and support TNS) at the on-line auction.  Check it out: http://tnsny.org/auction.  All proceeds go to support our PTA funded programs.

Mark your calendar:

  • Our April PTA Meeting is Thursday at 8:40 a.m. in the PTA Room.  Come and learn about the plans for our 3rd Street courtyard Garden!

Warmly,

Dyanthe

Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of April 3, 2017

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

A few months ago at a SLT (School Leadership Team) meeting, a parent brought up the question of what math looks like at TNS.  This sparked a lively discussion about our own experiences with math - as students, parents and educators.  It was a rich conversation and one we hoped the larger TNS community could also participate in.  Please join us TONIGHT from 5:30 - 7 p.m. for Math Night.  We will share our own math experiences and participate in grade level appropriate math activities (yes, get ready to do some work!).  Child care will be provided.

The deadline for turning in DOE Parent Surveys has been extended to April 7.  If you cannot find your green envelope, you can get your access code by calling the Survey Hotline at 1-800-690-8603.

Did you know that the TNS staff goes on a retreat each spring to focus on some aspect of our practice?  This year, we are exploring social justice and activism in our school and curriculum.   Some of the questions we are asking ourselves are, “Where do we see social justice/activism work already happening in our school?  What are the challenges to doing this work?  Where else can we weave this into our school culture and curriculum? ”  Please join me for my morning hour this Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. in the PTA Room to discuss this topic:  social justice and activism at TNS.  In preparation, I encourage you to read the article, Creating Classrooms for Social Justice.

Mark your calendars:

  • The Garden Committee will meet Monday at drop-off in the small cafeteria.

  • Monday is Math Night at TNS!   Join us at 5:30 p.m.

    • Kindergarten with Judy, Dianne and Shaquawn in Room 201

    • Pre-K/K with Erin and Wanda in Room 208

    • 1st/2nd grade in Room 308

    • 3rd Grade in the Library

    • 4th grade with Alexis in Room 312

    • 4th grade with Michiko and Natalie in Room 313

    • 5th grade with Corinthia in Room 306

    • 5th grade with Hannah in Room 314

  • Parent’s of Unique Kids Support Group meets Tuesday morning at drop-off in Room 301.

  • The Diversity Committee will meet Tuesday at drop-off in the small cafeteria.

  • I hope you will join me for my Morning Hour Wednesday at drop-off in the PTA Room.  

  • The PTA Executive Meeting is Thursday morning at drop-off in the PTA Room.  All are welcome.

  • School closed for Spring Recess:  4/10 – 4/18.

This past Thursday morning, Ahyesha’s son Khalif passed away suddenly in his sleep of a heart attack.  Service for Khalif will be held Thursday from 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. at the Provenzano Lanza Funeral Home at 43 2nd Ave.

Warmly,

Dyanthe

Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of March 27, 2017

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

The NYS English Language Arts Exam will be administered Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday morning this week.  Students who do not take the state tests will continue the important and meaningful work they engage in everyday.  Once again, we support parents in making the best decisions for their individual children.  Teachers will have conversations with students to create an environment that is respectful of the diversity of opinions surrounding this issue.  It is vital that all members of our community feel supported during this time and that we maintain a sense of calm for our students.

This is the last week to complete the Department of Education (DOE) survey!  Not only do your responses count towards our school’s rating, but we are evaluated by response rates.  We sent home a green envelope which contains directions and your access code.  You can find the DOE survey at http://schools.nyc.gov/Accountability/tools/survey/default.htm  Use the survey access code printed on your individual survey.  If you don’t have the hard copy of the survey, click the link to access your code or call the Survey Hotline at 1-800-690-8603.

Mark your calendars:

  • The ECO Committee will meet Wednesday at drop-off in the small cafeteria.

  • The Grants Committee will meet on Friday at drop-off in the small cafeteria.

Warmly,

Dyanthe

Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of March 20, 2017

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

In recent years, TNS students who opted out of the state tests took alternative assessments created by our 3rd, 4th and 5th grade teachers.  The work on these assessments was very similar to what students do throughout the year, but as with the state tests, students only had 3 days to complete it.  We are doing something different this year.  As part of our work with a coalition of progressive public elementary schools, we are piloting Performance Based Assessments (called “PBAs”) with our 5th graders.  Students will present their learning to a panel, who will ask probing questions and carefully listen as students express their understandings and reflect on what they have learned.  I look forward to sharing more about this exciting work with you soon.

This year, we will not give alternative assessments; students who do not take the state tests will continue the important and meaningful work they engage in everyday.  Please let me or your child’s classroom teacher(s) know as soon as possible if your child is going to take the NYS Tests this year so we can organize staffing and materials accordingly.  

We will have a testing forum to discuss the role that state tests play in the middle school application process on Wednesday (right after Sing).  This is an opportunity for families to learn about the process and hear from TNS families who have been through it and have children in middle school.

There is

  • Our 3rd Grade Camp Speers Presentation is Monday at 5:30 p.m. in the Library.

  • The Diversity Committee will meet on Tuesday at drop-off in the PTA Room.

  • What is “Sounds in Motion”?!  Come join us Tuesday at 3 p.m. in Room 303 for a fun, informational session about the literacy intervention program implemented in our early childhood classrooms to promote phonemic awareness and early reading skills.  This workshop will be led by our Speech teachers, Amanda and Rebecca.  Please bring the “experts” - your children, for support!

  • SING is Wednesday at 8:45 a.m. in the auditorium.  

  • We will have a test forum to discuss the role that state tests play in the Middle School Application process on Wednesday after Sing in the auditorium.

  • SLT (School Leadership Team) will meet on Friday at 8 a.m. in room 301.  This meeting is open to all and is a make-up for our missed meeting due to the snow day.

  • Join us on Friday for Family Movie Night!  Not only are we are screening the hit “Sing” but you and your child have an opportunity to make your own music! There will be pre-movie karaoke starting at 5:30 p.m.  The movie begins at 6:30 p.m.   Pizza, Popcorn, Juice and Cupcakes are available.  Admission is $2 per Child.  Adults are Free.

Only 15% of our families have completed their Department of Education (DOE) Parent Survey.  The DOE survey gathers information about your overall satisfaction with our school and the results are published and used to determine our official rating. Completion rates are also important as they reflect the level of parent involvement to the DOE.  Please complete your family survey!  The deadline for completing parent surveys is Friday, March 31st.  Thank you!

Happy first day of Spring!

Warmly,

Dyanthe

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