December 3, 2015


During this busy season, make sure to mark your calendars with the following:

Tuesday, December 8 – Staff Breakfast and Cookie table hosted by 2nd & 3rd grade; Joint School Committee meeting at 6:30pm, Ripley Conference Room

Friday, December 11 – PTG meeting, 9am, Thoreau Cafeteria ALL ARE WELCOME!

Friday, December 18 – Final day of Open Table drive; See below for details.

Trish and Betsy


Please support Thoreau’s Open Table Pantry Drive by providing items for gift bags that our fifth graders will be packing for the children of guests at Open Table over the holidays. We will try to fill 150 bags so start collecting your grade level items now! Collection starts Monday, November 30th and runs till Friday, December 18. There will be a collection box in the front hall for the items, and we are going to display the contributions so the Thoreau community can see the difference they are making day by day! Any questions, please contact Fiona Stevenson at, and thank you. Let’s show how Thoreau CARES!

  • Kindergarten – Juice Boxes
  • First Grade – Single Serving Cereal Box and/or Granola Bars
  • Second Grade – Macaroni & Cheese and/or tins of Tomato soup and Spaghettios
  • Third Grade – Single Servings of Apple Sauce, Pudding, Fruit Cups
  • Fourth Grade – Small Bags of Cookies and/or Chips, Popcorn, Crackers, Pretzels
  • Fifth Grade – Pencils, small journals, stickers


Thoreau clothing items and cookbooks are on sale. We have them on display across the school’s auditorium. Flannel pants and sweatshirts are $20. Adult sizes are available. Contact Jen McGrath at For cookbooks, go to Click “support Thoreau”. Each book is $5. Thank you for supporting the PTG!


It’s that time of year… Every fall, when we start spending more time inside together, we see an increase in illness. What can we do to stay healthy? Good hand washing! It’s one of the best ways to remove germs, avoid getting sick, and prevent the spread of germs to others. Making sure we are doing this properly is so very important.

Please remind your children:

  1. There are 5 steps: Wet, Lather, Scrub, Rinse, Dry
  2. Soap and water is so important, hand gel does not kill all germs.
  3. At least 20 seconds of scrubbing is needed (not while under running water). Sing Happy Birthday 2x.
  4. Cough and sneeze into elbows and move away from people if possible.
  5. The 3 main ways to introduce germs into your body – mouth, eyes and nose. Do not touch your face!

We have all been talking with your children about the importance of good hand washing. Please continue that conversation at home. Staying well hydrated and getting enough sleep will help you stay healthy this season. Please continue to send your child to school with a water bottle.

If your child is ill, please keep them home from school. They will be more comfortable and recover faster. Please send in a set of winter clothing to keep in your child’s locker (all grades). If the need arises, they will be grateful to be able to wear their own clothes!! Thanks for all your help and encouragement with your children to keep our community safe and healthy.  Please email me with questions. -Thank you, Megan Jensen


This holiday season when shopping at try AmazonSmile instead. When you designate THOREAU SCHOOL PTG as your charity on AmazonSmile, we receive a donation for every purchase you make!

What is AmazonSmile? AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from nearly one million organizations to support.

How do I shop at AmazonSmile? To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to from the web browser on your computer or mobile device.

Can I use my existing account on AmazonSmile? Yes, you use the same account on and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, and other account settings are also the same.

How do I select a charitable organization to support when shopping on AmazonSmile? On your first visit to AmazonSmile (, you need to select a charitable organization to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. The site will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make at will result in a donation.


Can I change my charity? Yes, you can change your charity any time. Your AmazonSmile purchases after the change count towards your newly selected charity. To change your charity, sign in to on your desktop or mobile phone browser and simply select “Change your Charity” in “Your Account.”


December School Menus:

MySchoolBucks Lunch Account Balance:

Math Resources for parents:


Morning with Santa at the Concord Museum

Don’t miss Santa’s stop at the Concord Museum on Saturday, December 12, 10 am-12:30 pm. Enjoy a delightful visit and photo with Santa, as well as a number of engaging seasonal crafts and activities including face painting, treasure hunts, cookie decorating, letters to Santa, and more. Organized by the Guild of Volunteers, this event has a long tradition with Concord Museum families. Some who attended as children are now bringing their children to Morning with Santa!  Reservations required. Purchase tickets online or call (978) 369-9763, ext. 216.

Concord and Carlisle Holiday Gift Drive December 1-16

CC Youth Services and CC Community Chest are teaming up again this year to collect donations of new, unwrapped gifts and toys for youth ages 0-15. There is a drop box in the main hallway at Thoreau School and at all Concord and Carlisle schools, Cambridge Trust Bank, Cambridge Savings, Middlesex Savings, Concord Recreation and Beede Center, Concord Council on Aging, Concord Town House, Fritz & Gigi, CVS, Sarah Campbell, Concord Toy Shop, The Mane Escape, and at the Parade of Giving & Concord Tree Lighting on December 6. The donated gifts will be distributed to Concord Carlisle youth and families who receive services from First Connections and the Concord Carlisle Community Services department. Items in high demand include bath and body products, building sets, Boston sports team-themed merchandise, board games, arts and crafts kits, school supplies, science kits, electronics, action figures, and puzzles. Prefer to shop online? Visit your local retailer’s online store to have gifts shipped to CCCC, Attn: Holiday Gift Drive, 19 Main Street, #2, Concord MA 01742. Know a family in need. Contact Aileen Buford, MSW, at 978.318.3034

Concord Conservatory of Music Offers World Rhythms Class for Kids

If your child marches to a different beat, why not harness that energy? Check out a free trial World Rhythms class at The Concord Conservatory of Music on Wednesday, December 9, from 4-4:45 pm. The World Rhythms class uses a variety of African and European hand drums, bells, and shakers to explore the beats of Africa, South America, the Caribbean, and Eastern Europe. The class takes advantage of the group setting—it helps students develop a sense of pulse, extends their attention span, deepens their concentration, and improves their hand-to-eye coordination. Sharing and listening are emphasized, and students are introduced to individual and group music making—soloing, ensemble playing, and tempo are focuses of the class. Drumming is a blast, burns some energy, and it’s a great foundation for all instrumental studies. The course is designed for the young musical student—appropriate for ages 6-7.Sign up today! Please visit, call 978-369-0010, or email Financial assistance is available.

Free Trial Lessons at The Concord Conservatory of Music!

Do you want to learn a new instrument, or take your playing to the next level? Give The Concord Conservatory of Music (CCM) a try—on CCM! Starting December 7 and running through December 12, CCM is offering free introductory trial lessons for many instruments—voice, flute, clarinet, saxophone, cello, violin, piano, guitar, bass, and percussion. Lesson times range from early afternoon to evening Monday through Friday, and Saturday morning and afternoon. Come check out CCM’s musical community! From concerts, lectures, “practice for pizza” contests, student recitals, to its new student mentor program, CCM will help you take your playing up a notch—or inspire you to begin a new instrument.  Call 978-369-0010, email, or visit today to set something up. Available times depend upon the instrument you’re interested in. The Concord Conservatory of Music is celebrating its 10th anniversary! The conservatory is home to an energetic community of people of all ages who want to deepen their involvement with music. Financial assistance is available.

December programs for Grades K-5 at the Fowler Branch of the Concord Free Public Library Family Matinee: Inside Out (PG), Saturday, December 5 at 2:30pm. All are welcome to stop in for popcorn and a movie.   LEGO Challenge: Thursday, December 10 at 4pm.  Each month we will challenge you with a different theme. You can build on that theme or make your own creation. For Grades K-5. Christmas Storytime: Monday, December 14 at 10am. Christmas stories, songs, and rhymes geared towards children ages 2-6 followed by a craft. Younger and older siblings are always welcomed. Gingerbread House Decorating: Saturday, December 19 at 2pm. Decorate your own gingerbread house! For ages 5 and up. Children 10 and under should be accompanied by a caregiver. Registration required. Big Joe’s Snow Show: Wednesday, December 30 at 10am. Big Joe the Storyteller tells winter tales from around the world that will delight, amaze, and thrill. For ages 2 and up.

The next issue of Thoreau Announcements will be published on Dec. 10, 2015. Submission deadline: 9pm on Monday, Dec. 7, 2015. Submissions must be school or community related and not commercial in nature. Submit your item in the body of an email (no attachments or photos); it should be brief, single-spaced and have minimal formatting.  Please no bullet points, numbering, or underlining. Email your submission to