Week of February 11, 2019

Dear Families,

 Last year was our first time visiting the Manhattan Country School (MCS) Farm.  Early that fall, Grace approached the 3rd grade team and me about trying something different from the camp we had been going to for years.  Part of this came out of a shared sense of dissatisfaction with our recent experiences, but more so because we were in search of a place that would make sense for our younger 2nd and 3rd grade classes.  As it turns out, The Manhattan Country School Farm is just that place. It is a small working farm in the Catskill Mountains, 150 miles north of New York City, in Roxbury, NY. The 180-acre property features a farmhouse that sleeps 24 students, a textile studio, a nature lab, a greenhouse, a barn, a recreation building, a sap house, a chicken house, and a historic stone house. The farm is staffed by full-time farmers and educators.  During the winter, students care for the animals (chickens, cows, pigs and sheep); learn to weave; explore snow covered fields and mountains and frozen streams; and study traditional and contemporary life in the Catskills. Zero-mile meals and a closed-loop food cycle are daily experiences. By sharing in these activities, attending daily classes and performing household and barn chores, children come to function as a mutually reliant community.  It is also good to know that students from Manhattan Country School begin their overnight trips to the farm at age 7 and the school’s students use the farm throughout the school year. It’s a very special place and I am so excited that each 2nd/3rd class gets to spend 2 nights and 3 days there. All 2nd and 3rd grade families are strongly encouraged to join us tonight at 5:30PM to meet John McDaniel, MCS farm director and learn more about the program.  I’ve included some pictures from my time at the farm with Grace’s class last year:  one is on a nature hike and one is during free time, when students go sledding, visit the animals, jump in the haystack in the barn and play indoor games in the farm house.

We will have a Q&A for families who can’t make tonight or have additional questions with 2nd/3rd teachers, Grace and Jane this Wednesday morning after drop-off in the PTA Room.

Mark your calendars:

  • The PTA Exec Committee meets Monday at 8:40AM in the PTA Room.  All are welcome.

  • ⅔ Farm Trip Presentation at 5:30PM in the 4th floor gym.

  • Parent’s of Unique Kids Support Group meets twice this week: Tuesday morning at 8:30AM and again in the afternoon at 4:30PM.  

  • ⅔ Farm Trip Q & A Wednesday at drop-off in the PTA Room.

  • TNS Middle School Students Panel:  former TNS students will talk about how TNS prepared them for the academic and social expectations of middle school Wednesday at 6PM.  

  • The ECO Committee meets Friday at drop-off in the the small cafeteria.

  • There is no school February 18 - 22.  

Have a wonderful break.  We’ll see you Monday, February 25.




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