Thoreau PTG Announcements January 13, 2011

Published by the Thoreau School Parent Teacher Group
January 13, 2011

Please do not reply to this e-mail. For information on contacting the Thoreau Announcements, please see the contact information at the end of this e-mail.


We hope everyone is enjoying the Winter weather. We would like to thank the PTG Board for sponsoring the first teacher appreciation breakfast of 2011 last Friday. It was a success. Have you been following the progress of the CCHS building project? Keep informed at . There is also a School Committee Forum on Thursday, February 2nd about the CCHS Building Project. The Concord Elementary School joint PTG meeting is coming up in March and will be held at the Willard School. The topic will be the CCHS building project. Stay tuned for the date and time. Have a great weekend!
Karen and Melanie


Begin Your Quest …
Have you ever wondered where in the world cinnamon originated? Do you know where the closest cranberry bog is? In which country was it discovered that drying fruits in the sun would make them sweeter? You’ll discover the answer to these questions and more when your family does this year’s Geography Quest! The Geography Quest is the annual PTG-sponsored event that’s designed to let Thoreau, Willard and Alcott families explore geography together while learning a bit about history and how to use reference tools. The Quests were sent home with students earlier this week. A copy is also available at the new Thoreau PTG website (under “Forms” in the right-hand sidebar). Many reference books have been set aside at the Thoreau School and Concord Public libraries. Completed Geography Quests should be returned to the box in the Thoreau library by Tuesday, February 8.
–Anne Mullaney and Carla Macy, Geography Quest Co-chairs


Limited registration window for 2011 Annual Thoreau School Spelling Bee!

The deadline for registration for this year’s Thoreau Spelling Bee is Friday, January 14th. All 3rd, 4th and 5th graders are invited to participate in our annual Bee scheduled on Saturday, February 12th. Please assure your children that this is a very fun and low-pressure event; the more the merrier! 3rd and 4th graders participate in teams of three; 5th graders compete individually. Bee start times are: 3rd grade 3:30, 4th grade 5:00, 5th grade 6:30. Form your teams ASAP and please return one registration form per team by January 14th. Link to registration form is:
Suzy Symons, Spelling Bee Chair


The Thoreau PTG Website,, has been re-designed to provide Thoreau parents with a more comprehensive source of information, and to enable a more efficient email distribution system. On the website you’ll find all of the important information you’re used to, as well as a new “Announcements” page where the PTG will keep parents up to date on goings-on in the school and in the Concord community. This page will be the new home of the “Weekly Announcements,” and will also include news items that go out via email blasts. The Weekly Announcements and news items will still be sent to parents via email, but in order to receive them you will need to subscribe to the website. Simply go to and enter your email address in the Subscribe box (located on the right side of the page), and then validate your subscription by following the directions in the confirmation email you receive. We hope you’ll subscribe as soon as possible, as the current method of distributing the Weekly Announcements will be phased out over the next few months. Please be aware that, for a short time after subscribing, you may receive two copies of the Announcements until we get your email address deleted from the old email distribution system. Don’t worry, this won’t take too long. We hope you find the site helpful and easy to use.
If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact Marcy Shipe, PTG Webmaster, at


The annual Hobby Fair is right around the corner. This is an event for 4th and 5th grade students to share their hobbies, collections, art or other interests with teachers, family and friends. Each year we see an amazing array of fun and interesting exhibits, from displays of sports memorabilia to exhibits about music, arts and crafts and writing.

The Fair will be open to the Thoreau School community on the evening of Monday, January 31st from 6:30pm to 7:30pm, when family and friends may view the many great exhibits. On Tuesday, February 1st, the Fair will run from 9:00am to 11:30am, during which time all classes will have time to visit and enjoy the Fair.

So, 4th and 5th graders start thinking about your exhibits, perhaps get together with a friend and plan an exhibit together (please note that participation is optional). Permission slips were sent home this week, and should be returned to your child’s teacher no later than Thursday Jan 28th. If you need another permission slip or have any questions, please contact Mardi Hutchinson at with any questions.

Any adults interested in helping to set up or clean up would be much appreciated.
Thoreau Hobby Fair Committee


REMINDER!!! Our December late bus Family Friends Tuesday is January 18!

Looking for a fun activity to do with your buddies? On Jan. 18 the Willard School Family Friends group is sponsoring a skating party! Here are the details:

Tuesday, Jan. 18

1:00 – 2:30 p.m.

Nashoba Valley Olympia (34 Mass Ave, Rte. 111)

Boxborough, MA

Refreshments provided after skating. Please bring your skates and a helmet (bike helmets are OK). Skate rentals are available (free for buddies). Helmets are not available for rental. You must have a helmet to be allowed on the ice.

RSVP’s are necessary for this event! Please contact Tracy McIntyre with your RSVP or questions: by Jan. 14!!!

Please remember that for playdates each family (Concord and Boston) should send a signed, dated note to the school office at the beginning of school on the Tuesday of the late bus. The notes should include the plans for the afternoon and the names and telephone numbers of both families. Boston children can ride Concord children’s bus with a note from Boston parents granting permission. To catch the late bus, please have students at the Alcott School playground by 4:20 p.m. for the 4:30 bus to Boston.
–Your Thoreau Family Friends Team: Gretchen Nelson, Laurine Verrilli, Meg Alexander


The Thoreau PTG needs a School Directory Coordinator. The School Directory Coordinator obtains a database from Concord Public Schools detailing student and family contact information for inclusion in the directory and produces a camera ready-copy for printing. The Directory Coordinator must have a PC which can run the ACCESS database program (it will not run on a MAC). Prior knowledge of ACCESS is not required (although it would be very helpful), but you must be computer savvy since you will work with the database and occasionally make minor updates to it. Much of the job involves verifying the data received by the school, soliciting correct data when errors are found, and soliciting data that has not yet been sent to the school so that the Directory can be printed in time for Back To School Night. The Directory Coordinator also arranges the production and distribution of the directories. This position is labor intensive during August and September with smaller amounts of time needed on an ongoing basis. It is possible (and highly recommended) to split this job into 2 positions and have one person work on the database/computer-related tasks and the other person validate and solicit data. We all know what a valuable communication tool the Thoreau School Directory is, so it is imperative that this very important position be filled. Please contact Karen Brown at or Melanie Bettencourt at if you are interested or need further information. Thank You!


We would like to remind families that the PTG funds many different programs for your children including the many enrichment programs for each grade, the all-school assemblies, classroom subscriptions (Time for Kids, Nat’l Geo. For Kids, Scholastic News), field trips including the bus fare, METCO Program events, as well as stipends for teachers and specialists (to purchase additional materials that would otherwise be funded by them personally). Without your support for the PTG, we cannot continue to support these wonderful programs for your lovely children. Please donate to the Thoreau Annual Appeal and support your PTG. You can contribute by check to the Thoreau PTG or with your credit card online by clicking the “Donate” tab at .

Thank you to the following families for their generous donations this past month : Aibel, Attonito, Robichaud, Bailey, Dorr, Goar, Hall, Holden, Kaplan, Keilty, Morrissey, Thorp, Wipper, Zuffante.

Natalie Gekle & Maria Scichilone
Fundraising Co-Chairs


March 22
Gr. 4 Long Composition

March 23
Gr. 3 and Gr. 5 ELA

March 24
Gr. 4 ELA

March 25
Gr. 3 and Gr. 5 ELA

March 28
Gr. 4 ELA

May 9
Gr. 3 and Gr. 5 Math

May 11
Gr. 3 and Gr. 5 Math

May 12
Gr. 4 Math

May 13
Gr. 4 Math

May 18
Gr. 5 Science

May 19
Gr. 5 Science

Please be mindful of these dates, and make every effort to have your child(ren) in school on time. Thank you for your cooperation in this effort.

LUNCH MENU Week of January 17-January 21

Monday No School

Tuesday Early Release

Wednesday Beefy Nachos

Thursday Shepard’s Pie

Friday French Bread Pizza



Urgent: Concord’s MLK Celebration is moving to the Willard Elementary School auditorium from the Sanborn Middle School auditorium, due to technical difficulties!

This Thursday, January 13th, from 7-8:30 pm Featuring rousing gospel singing and high energy step dance, free and open to all.

Sponsored by the Concord-Carlisle Human Rights Council.


Milldam Nursery School presents its annual children’s concert, John Fitzsimmons & Friends, on January 29, 2011. It’s a toe-tapping, family friendly event for kids of all ages!

Saturday, January 29 at 10 a.m. Thoreau Elementary School, 29 Prairie St., Concord

Tickets $10. Proceeds benefit the Milldam Enrichment Fund.

For more information and to purchase tickets online, visit the Milldam Nursery School website,


Summer Fun in January – Save the Date!

CCHS Summer Opportunities Fair – Monday, January 31, 2011

Concord-Carlisle High School

Come join us at the 29th Annual Summer Opportunities Fair to be held Monday, January 31, 2011, from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. (snow date is February 1) in the CCHS cafeteria. This event provides parents and students from K-12 the means to explore some exciting alternatives to the usual summer activities, and brings together representatives from approximately 90 organizations to present summer opportunities held locally, nationally and abroad. Exhibitors will be present to display information on wilderness adventures, educational and enrichment opportunities, foreign language and student exchange programs and volunteer opportunities, as well as traditional, sports and special-needs camps. This event is sponsored by the Concord-Carlisle High School Parents’ Association. Admission is free.

The next issue of Thoreau Announcements will be edited by Laurie Garrison. To submit an item, email You will receive an e-mail acknowledgment that your submission has been received. Submissions must be school or community related and not commercial in nature. Submissions should be brief, with minimal formatting – no bullet points or underlining, please! Deadline: 9 pm Monday, January 17, 2011.


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