April 4, 2013


Happy Spring! Please be sure to attend the one of the most talked about events of the year-the Annual Cake Walk. This is a fun event for the whole family. Karen Brown, Melanie Bettencourt, and Amy Tenenbaum are still looking for volunteers to help out the day of, and also to bake cakes. Please contact them if you can help. While you are there, and the kids are playing games, be sure to check out the Mini Auction being held on the first floor in Mrs. Andrews’ classroom.

We have been asked by the Principal to remind you not to park where there are “No Parking” signs. Officer Scott has been contacted and will be ticketing people who are parked illegally. Thanks, and hope to see you all on Saturday! –Jen and Shelagh


We look forward to seeing you at the Cake Walk this Saturday, April 6 from 2-4pm, rain or shine! Tickets will be sold in the main entrance of the school during the event and will be 50 cents each. They can be bought individually or in sets of $5 or $10. The tickets can be used for all the activities – playing games, buying refreshments and taking part in the Cake Walk.

Speaking of the Cake Walk, we need LOTS and LOTS of cakes!! Like 300-400!!!  The more cakes we get, the more prizes we can give out at the Cake Walk.  Cakes don’t need to be big – you can make 2 prize cakes out of 1 box of mix.  If you are donating prize cakes for the Cake Walk you may bring in your cakes any time before or during the event.  If you are bringing an allergen free cake, please let us know when you drop off.

We hope you are planning cakes for the Cake Decorating Contest!  All cakes entered into the Contest must be decorated by a Thoreau student and brought to the school between 12:30 and 1:30. We’ll be receiving cakes downstairs in the Faculty Dining Room next to the gym. The Contest categories are: Best Animal Theme, Best Book Theme, Best Food Theme, Best Nature Theme, Best Sports & Games Theme, Best Thoreau Spirit, Cleverest Cupcakes, Most Colorful, and Most Creative. All cakes must be wrapped in plastic wrap, and labeled with the cake flavor, the student’s name, grade, teacher and contest category. Please do not bring cakes on plates or use decorations that you want returned to you. Cakes that win the contest will be displayed during the festival and may be taken home by their respective student decorators.  Contest cakes that do not win will be handed out as prize cakes during the Cake Walk.

After you are lucky enough to win a cake at the Cake Walk, check out the many other fun activities we have planned. You’ll recognize the much beloved bean bag toss and marble run in the Library. Test your strength with the High Striker and your aim with the Chicken Chuck in the Auditorium.  When you’re ready to take a break, enjoy some cotton candy, popcorn, and hot dogs in the comfort of the school cafeteria. There will also be face painting, sand art, balloon animals, and the lucky Wheel of Fortune.

Volunteers are still needed!  Please consider volunteering an hour of your time.  We still need help running games and handing out prize cakes.  If you are willing and able, please contact Karen Brown at dmbkjb@comcast.net. Any family needing financial assistance in order to participate in this event should contact Rachel Levesque, school Social Worker, at rlevesque@colonial.net or (978) 318-1300. –Melanie Bettencourt, Karen Brown & Amy Tenenbaum, Cake Walk Co-chairs


Attention parents… Between now and April vacation, please make sure to go through the Lost & Found located in the cafeteria for any articles of clothing your child may have lost during the school year.  Any clothing remaining after Friday, April 12, will be donated to Goodwill.


Red Sox, Botox, 80 Thoreau, Wicked, iPad, pair of Nero Dabblers, Eggs, Jose Mateo, Kindle, Bondir, and Yogibo!

Curious? Check out the light green program for the Thoreau Silent Auction that went home with your child on Wednesday! Please stop Mrs. Andrews’ classroom this Saturday, April 6, 2-4 pm and bid on an item (or 2!) All proceeds from the auction go to the Thoreau PTG. Checks only, please! Many thanks. -Jackie Meehan, PTG Vice President, jackiemeehan@comcast.net


Our 25th Annual Book Character Parade is next Tuesday! Put the finishing touches on your book character masks, simple costumes and props (no sticks, no guns, and short cardboard swords only, please), check out a copy of your book, and get ready to march.

The parade will begin at 11:30 AM on Tuesday, April 9, starting in Mr. Hourihan’s room. Classes will march in this order: The Cat in the Hat and friend, 5-Hourihan, 5-Erickson, 4-Lemaire and 2-Jackson, K-McKenna, K-Apollos, 5-Hoyt, 4-Kenney and 1-Andrews, 4-Murphy  and 3-Ham, 4-Dillon, 3-Najimy, 3-Cashman, 4-Keefe, K-Shaw and 2-Peirce, 1-Thompson and 2-Watson, 1-Walsh and 3-Gallagher, K-Ellis, 1-Henry and  2-Marotta.

After gathering the whole school, we will go outside through the front cafeteria door. If it is good weather, we will proceed along the sidewalk past the Music Room and then through the door to the 1994 classroom wing. We will not go into the Auditorium on this route. If it is raining, we will walk under the covered walkway along the front of the school and inside through the main doors. We will go into the Auditorium and across the stage, where we will announce each class as it crosses. Parents, families and friends are welcome to watch the Book Character Parade from the sidewalk front of the school, or (only if it is raining) from the Auditorium.

If there are any questions, please talk to Karen or Cathy in the Library, or email me at kpettyjohn@colonial.net See you next Tuesday! –Karen Pettyjohn

LUNCH MENU Week of April 8-12

  • Monday: Beef Hot Dog on Bun
  • Tuesday: Early Release Day
  • Wednesday: Popcorn Chicken
  • Thursday: Warm Ham and Cheese
  • Friday: Pizza Day


Poetry Class with Brad Bennett

Brad Bennett taught third grade at Thoreau School for seventeen years. In addition to teaching poetry in the classroom each year, Brad taught the before-school Thoreau Poetry Club for 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders for ten years. Brad is a published poet, and his haiku have appeared in The Heron’s Nest, Frogpond, and Acorn. Brad will once again be teaching an after school Poetry Class at Emerson Umbrella.

In this eight-week class, kids will write a variety of poems, including list poems, mask poems, letter poems, odes, and tanka. Then they will illustrate their poems using a variety of media, including colored pencil, pastel, water color, collage, and folded paper. They will also be making and binding their own poetry books. Age Range: 8 –11yrs; Duration: 8 Weeks; Day/Time: Wednesdays, 4:00-5:15 PM; Dates: April 24 – June 12; Cost:  $150; Materials: $10. To register: www.emersonumbrella.org or call 978-371-0820.

The Concord Solar Challenge

The Comprehensive Sustainable Energy Committee (CSEC) of the Town of Concord, in collaboration with the Environmental Field Studies Group of Concord-Carlisle High School, is pleased to announce the Concord Solar Challenge, a program to help Concord homeowners, businesses and nonprofits “go solar”. Right now, a combination of low PV panel prices and generous incentives makes solar power a compelling and surprisingly affordable, profitable and low-risk investment. For homes with good sunlight, annual rates of return exceed 15% and payback is in 4 to 5 years. A key part of the Challenge is tiered pricing – as more people sign up, everyone gets a lower price. And if we add 1 megawatt of solar power, we will reduce our carbon dioxide emissions by 600 tons every year, which is equivalent to planting 14,000 trees.

The Challenge will run until July 31st.  CSEC has selected Astrum Solar to be its vendor partner. Our goal is to achieve 100 more residential solar PV installations and a significant increase in installations at local businesses and nonprofits. To sign up for a free site evaluation, please access the Concord Solar Challenge at http://go.astrumsolar.com/Concord.  And to learn more, please join us at our Kickoff Workshop on Thursday, April 4 from 7pm to 8:30pm in the Hearing Room at the Town House.  See you there!

Center for Parents and Teachers Program

Identifying the Gifts of Our Students:  Building Resiliency and Increasing Success While Reducing Stress, Anxiety and Depression, facilitated by Christine Duvivier.

Middle schools and High Schools have become academic pressure cookers and our kids are feeling the stress.  At the same time, as parents, we often fear our children will not get good jobs or great lives if they don’t have top grades and scores.

Fortunately, there is good news on both counts: Christine Duvivier’s ground-breaking research on students in the bottom 80% of their classes identifies their gifts and shows how they are suited for critical roles in our future economy. Discover eight gifts that are perfectly suited to leadership and the future economy.  Come hear research on how Identify the system elements that will prevent anxiety and depression and increase resilience and learn three positive factors for the highest life satisfaction.

Christine combines a Masters in Positive Psychology from University of Pennsylvania with 20 years of business leadership.  Her mission is to unleash the hidden talents in every young adult.  She challenges the notion that teens who are not top performers have something wrong with them and are ill positioned for future success. In its place, she proposes a new model based on her work in positive change–a model that holds a young person’s well-being at its core.

Monday, May 6, 2013; 7:00 – 9:00 PM at Concord Carlisle High School, 500 Walden Street, Concord.  No Fee to attend. Donations to support the ongoing work of the Center for Parents and Teachers will be gratefully accepted at the door. No pre-registration needed.

Concord Conservatory Launches New Summer Music Programs

The Concord Conservatory of Music is making a big splash this summer with a wide variety of new program offerings for all ages and musical abilities.  Adults and children alike will find something for them in our many summer camps, classes, and workshops. Our Workshops and boot camps provide weeklong specialized experiences in strings, piano, woodwinds, brass, guitar, percussion, jazz, and more.  And our Workshops provide an infusion of musical adventure in highly concentrated doses, including musical theatre, drumming, string ensembles and even the Ukulele.   In addition we offer lessons for all ages and abilities.

Space is limited.  To learn more about our Summer Programs and to register, visit ConcordConservatory.org.  You can also call 978-369-0010, or email at info@ConcordConservatory.org.  The Concord Conservatory of Music is the areas local community music school and is located in the West Concord Union Church at 1317 Main Street in Concord.

Concord House Tour on April 6

Celebrate spring’s arrival with the League of Women Voters’ “What’s New!” tour of seven unique Concord homes on Saturday, April 6, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. These new and newly remodeled houses feature the latest trends in energy efficient and green technologies, accessibility and design. They include a LEED platinum-certified home, a bold contemporary, a modernized antique and more.

Tour maps will be available for pickup on April 6 between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. at the Alcott School, 93 Laurel Street, Concord. Tickets are $30 in advance, $35 on April 6. Purchase tickets online at www.lwvcc.org. Tickets may also be reserved in advance by mail. Send check, name for pickup, phone and email to: LWVCC House Tour, P.O. Box 34, Concord, MA, 01742. All proceeds benefit the League of Women Voters of Concord-Carlisle, a nonpartisan, issues-oriented organization that encourages active and informed participation in government. For information, visit http://lwvcc.org/housetour2013.html, email HouseTour@lwvcc.org, or call 978-254-1598.

Patriots’ Day at the Concord Museum

On Monday, April 15, explore the Concord Museum’s outstanding collection of treasures from April 1775, then try your hand at patriotic crafts, meet living history characters, and learn more about powder horns, muskets, and the Revere lantern.  At 1:00, listen to the Middlesex County 4H Fife & Drum Corps, then ask your questions about fifes and drums in 1775. All family-friendly activities are free with Museum admission. Be sure to stop by the Museum Shop to purchase your own tricorn hats! For further information visit: www.concordmuseum.org.

Silhouette Portrait-Taking at the Concord Museum

There is something special about having your child’s profile cut by Jean Comerford, a master of the centuries-old craft of silhouette cutting from paper. These delightful heirloom-quality works of art make a wonderful Mother’s Day gift or keepsake.  Appointments are scheduled 9:30-4:00 on Friday, April 19 and 9:30-12:30 on Saturday, April 20; each sitting is approximately ten minutes; $30/profile. Children six months and up and adults welcome. To make a reservation please call the Concord Museum at 978-369-9763, ext 216. For further information visit: www.concordmuseum.org.

How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk

Facilitated by Cyndie White, M.S., Parent Educator, this perennial favorite is a five-part workshop that offers innovative ways to solve such common problems as: how to listen to and understand your child’s concerns; how to have cooperation in your family without nagging; how to find alternatives to punishment; and how to help your child attain a positive self-image. Video clips are used as a jumping off point for discussion and to illustrate points. Presentation and discussion is overseen by a seasoned facilitator. Meets for five weekly Monday afternoon sessions: April 22, 29, May 6, 13, 20 from 12:45-2:15 pm. Fee: $135 (includes cost of workbook and materials). Location: Ripley Building, 120 Meriam Road, Concord. This workshop has a limited number of spots and is offered just one time this year so sign up soon! Pre-registration required by email to cpt@colonial.net; put “How to Talk” in the subject line.

Concord Chamber Music Society’s Annual Community Concert

The Concord Chamber Music Society will present its annual Community Concert on Sunday, April 7, at 2:00 pm. The concert will feature Trio Cleonice, the New England Conservatory’s talented young Piano Trio in Residence, and will take place at the Emerson Umbrella Center for the Arts, 40 Stow Street in Concord.  Entitled “A Musical Joke,” the performance will include examples of musical humor by Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Schubert and Ives, and is sure to entertain and delight audience members of all ages! Tickets are $15 and free for children 12 and under accompanied by an adult.  The concert takes place during Emerson Umbrella’s Spring Open Studio Weekend, and admission to the Open Studios are free to concert goers. For more information, please visit www.concordchambermusic.org or call 978-371-9667.


The next issue of Thoreau Announcements will be published on APRIL 11, 2013. Submission Deadline: 9 pm Monday, APRIL 8, 2013. Submission guidelines: Submissions must be school or community related and not commercial in nature. Submit your item in the body of an email (no attachments); it should be brief and have minimal formatting – no bullet points or underlining, please. Email your submission to announcements@thoreauptg.org.