November 15, 2012


Please join us for our first evening PTG meeting tonight, November 15, beginning at 7:00 pm in the Library. Agenda items include Ga-Ga Pit vote, Auction/All School Social discussion, and more! Hope to see you there. –Jen and Shelagh


The Annual Turkey Trot will take place next Wednesday, November 21. The fun begins with a pep rally starting in the gym between 11:20 and 11:30am.  Parents, siblings and family members are welcome to attend and watch.  At the end of the pep rally, around 11:45am, students will leave the gym and begin the Trot as they chase the Turkey through the neighborhood!  (The Trot is a short run through the Thoreau School neighborhood, with the kindergarteners running a shortened route.  There are parent volunteers all along the way to guide the students as they run.)

Parents are welcome to come and watch the kids chase the Turkey through the neighborhood, and then meet their child at the end of the Trot, which will be on the Upper Playground behind the school.  Parents should check in with their child’s teacher if they want to leave with their child after the Turkey Trot.  Otherwise, it is a regular half day dismissal of 12:25pm, with the normal dismissal procedures in place.

If you have not returned your child’s permission slip for the Turkey Trot, please return the slip by this Friday November 16th for your child to be able to participate. If you need an extra copy of the permission slip, go to: If you have any questions, please contact Trish Siefer (978-287-0214 or or Betsy Martel (978-287-4413 or  Thank you and we look forward to seeing you next Wednesday! -Trish Siefer and Betsy Martel


Please see the letter from Maria Barker, Director of Food and Nutritional Services, for information on changes to


Hello all Thoreau School families.  We are so excited that the response to the Annual Appeal has been great  so far this year.  We want to thank the following families for their support:  Gekle, Sutter, Yamartino, Shi, Hunter, Zheng/Fan, Shulman/Tabloski, Moloney/Heymann, Pascucci,  Lee, Sharifi, Polin, Swain, Del Sobral, Meehan and Krincich/Mahan. If you haven’t already done so, please consider giving to the Annual Appeal.   One hundred percent of your donation is tax deductible and goes directly to the activities and supplies that benefit your child. We are spending approximately $100 per student this year. Send a check to the school in the envelope supplied in your letter or donate online at Thank you so much for your support!


A big thank you to the following parents who on short notice came in to check classes for lice:  Ayesha Farag-Davis, Maralee Glitzenstein, Steve Kirincich and Melissa Tustin. All parents need to  be checking their children for lice on a regular basis.   Early detection makes treatment easier and minimizes the spread to others.  Be sure to check your child before and after any sleepovers especially.

Stay Health!  Wash hands, cover coughs, get a flu vaccine and plenty of rest and fluids. –Nicki Morina Richards, RN, MS, Thoreau School Nurse


The first day for Chess Club is November 27. Chess club is a casual and fun club where kids get to practice their chess skills with other kids, and is open to everyone who loves to play chess. It’s good for both beginners and advanced players. You will find somebody your level to play with and make friends. You don’t need to register; just show up and play. It runs every Tuesday morning from 7:45am to 8:45am at the school cafeteria.

Parents are welcome to stay and play if you like, or watch the battle going on. Before you drop off your kids, please let them know that they will be expected to keep quiet and have good chess manners. If you don’t want to play, you can watch but with good watcher’s manners. When the time is up, please help clean up the chess pieces. Thanks! -Jinglin Zhang, Chess Club Coordinator


All bins/tables are overflowing with clothing, some lunch boxes, etc.  All items will be donated on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, so please check the lost and found before then.  It’s located in the cafeteria.

LUNCH MENU Week of November 12-16

  • Monday: Teriyaki Chicken Patty on Bun
  • Tuesday: Tacos with Lean Beef
  • Wednesday: Half Day – No Lunch
  • Thursday: Thanksgiving Recess – No School
  • Friday: Thanksgiving Recess – No School


November 8 School Committee Update

The latest School Committee Update, from the November 8 meeting, is posted at Committee Update 11-8-12.pdf.

Get Involved & Stay Informed: Attend a School Committee Meeting

There are important issues being regularly discussed at School Committee meetings that may be of interest to you and would benefit from active and engaged parents. Among them are school climate, MCAS test scores, transportation, and building the new high school. In an effort to encourage more School Committee participation we’d like to strive to have every meeting, including building committee meetings, attended by at least one Thoreau parent. Additionally, we’d love your support in taking notes of the proceedings to be sure we have an elementary-focused perspective to share with the Thoreau Community. To coordinate our efforts, we’ve designed a Doodle poll that will allow you to sign up for one or more scheduled meetings. Please click the link, consult your schedules, and sign up for a meeting or two (and bring a friend or two): -Ling Liu & Cheryl Kirkpatrick

Holiday Give-Back to Benefit the Family of Gary Garafola

Thoreau School families are invited to continue to support the family of Concord bus driver Gary Garafola (“Mr. G.”) this holiday season by participating in an optional memorial fundraiser at Barefoot Books in Concord.  Families that shop at the Barefoot Books Studio between November 15 and December 15—and request their holiday purchases be applied to this fundraiser—will effectively be donating up to 40% of their purchases toward the Garafola family.  For more information, please contact  Or just come by the studio at 89 Thoreau Street between November 15 and December 15.

Kids Skate Night/Parents’ Night Out

Join Colonial Figure Skating’s Broadway Theatre on Ice Teams for a Kids Skate Night/Parents’ Night Out.  On Saturday, November 17 from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm, drop the kids off and start your holiday shopping.  No skating experience necessary.  Experienced skaters and coaches will work with the kids to create a Theatre on Ice skit to be performed at the end of the evening for parents.  There will be face painting, pizza and more.  Cost is $25 per skater, $50 family max.  Rentals are available at the rink for $6. Nashoba Valley Olympia, 34 Massachusetts Ave. Boxborough (just over the Acton line).  Contact for any questions.

Thanksgiving Turkey Truck for Crossroads Shelter

Please join Holy Family Parish on Sunday, November 18 for the annual Thanksgiving Turkey Truck, a drive to collect frozen turkeys for the Crossroads Shelter in East Boston and the Roxbury Family Life Center. Members of the Holy Family Youth Ministry will be collecting frozen turkeys (average size of 10 lbs) from 7:00 am until 1:00 pm at the truck parked in front of the church in Monument Square. For more information, please contact Jaclyn Daniels, Youth Minister, at 978-369-7442  or

17th Annual Family Trees: A Celebration of Children’s Literature

Make a visit to the Concord Museum’s Family Trees part of your Thanksgiving weekend tradition!  On Friday and Saturday, November 23 and 24, enjoy 38 trees decorated with inspiration from classic and contemporary picture books, then get crafty with special projects related to this year’s books. Pick your favorite bear from The Teddy Bear’s Picnic, then create a tiny teddy out of clay; decorate a felt mitten inspired by A Mountain of Mittens; read the poetry books featured in Family Trees, then write some “poet-tree” on an autumn leaf to share with others. Museum hours: 9:00-5:00; crafts: 11:00-3:00.  For further information visit:

Instrumental Music School Faculty Concert

The Instrumental Music School of Carlisle and Concord will hold its seventh annual Faculty Concert on Sunday November 18, 5:30 pm at the Concord Library, 129 Main St in Concord Center. The concert is free of charge and open to the public – please come! Faculty performers include Jon Amon, Alexei Doohovskoy, Nune Hakobyan, Deanna Johnson and Andrei Sobchenko; the program also features student performers Suzanne Balles, Nina He and Fairchild Tang. Music includes works by Brahms, Lalo, Busser, Faure, and a couple of jazz favorites with faculty quartet Glorivy Arroyo, Jason Felitto, Don Kirby, and Jason Yost.

The Instrumental Music School of Carlisle and Concord, established by the Concord and Carlisle Schools in 1980, offers individual instrumental and vocal lessons to new and continuing students. For information and registration materials please visit: or contact Debbie Levine, or 978-341-2490 ext. 7152.

Open Mic/Cocoa House at Reasons to be Cheerful

Reasons to be Cheerful in West Concord will hold its monthly open mic for elementary, middle and high school students to showcase their talent.  Sign-ups for pianists, guitarists, singers, and other musicians are now at RTBC.  Musicians will have five minutes each to perform and up to 18 kids will have a chance to play.  All performers will receive free ice cream or cocoa.  The show starts at 4PM on Sunday, November 18. Elementary students will perform between 4 – 5.  Middle and high school students will perform between 5 – 6.  RTBC will provide keyboards, microphones, and a PA system – the rest is up to you!

CCYS Travel and In-Town Spring Registration Now Open

Registration is now open for Concord Carlisle Youth Soccer’s in-town programs for pre-K through Grade 6 and travel programs for ages U9 through U14 for the spring 2013 season. The travel registration deadline is December 4, and the in-town registration deadline is March 5. More information can be found at

Nashoba Brooks Annual Country Fair

On Saturday, November 17 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm Nashoba Brooks School will be hosting their annual Country Fair at 200 Strawberry Hill Road in Concord.  The school will be transformed into an old-fashioned fairground. The community is invited to enjoy kids’ carnival games and prizes. Whether you are tossing a beanbag through Brooks the Bear, shooting a marshmallow to feed a hungry animal, or chucking the chicken, there is fun to be had by kids and adults of all ages. Also, stop by our basket room raffle on your way downstairs to the musical cakes. A delicious lunch featuring a fall harvest menu will be available including turkey “gobbler” sandwiches, hot dogs, harvest soups and more. Local and school organizations will be providing information booths, as well as face and hair painting. All proceeds support selected charitable causes and other parents’ association efforts. This event is open to the public and free to all! So please come, bring the whole family, and enjoy!


Principal Kelly Clough’s Blog

MCAS Schedule:

NutriKids lunch account balance:

K-5 Booklists:


The next issue of Thoreau Announcements will be published on NOVEMBER 29, 2012. Submission Deadline: 9 pm Monday, NOVEMBER 26, 2012. 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