Thompson School News : September 25, 2017

In This Issue

  • Save the Date | School Calendar
  • #everythingyoueverwantedtoknowaboutthompson
  • Principal’s Update
  • Thompson News and Events
  • Community News and Events
  • PTO Fundraising
  • Connect with Us

Save The Date

Boys in Motion – Mondays and Wednesdays after school starting 9/25

Boys in Motion is a non-competitive fitness initiative, for boys in 4th and 5th grade, that inspires active lifestyles, friendships and personal growth.

Morning PTO Meeting – Friday, September 29, 8:15am – 9:30 am

Are evenings inconvenient? Not to worry, we will meet a few times during the year in the morning right after drop off in the cafeteria. Is you baby, toddler with you? That’s fine too, just bring them along, this is a more informal conversation.

Spirit Day, Backwards Day – Friday, September 29

Show your school spirit by wearing an outfit in reverse on this day!

Walk or Bike to School Day – Wednesday, October 4
No School – Monday, October 9
PTO Meeting, Budget Approval – Wednesday, October 11
Picture Day – Thursday, October 12
Movie Night – Friday, October 13

School Calendar

Click for Thompson’s Google Calendar to get school holidays, early release days, and PTO events on your own calendar.  Click for a printable version of this month’s calendar.


For families looking for extra information, unfettered access to our weekly newsletter, volunteer opportunities, the link to shop at Amazon (your purchases benefit all Thompson students via the PTO!), contact info and soooo much more, please pop over to our site, and be sure to bookmark it. We will be making changes to the content over the coming weeks, but the link will remain the same.

Principal’s Update

Dear Thompson Families,

It was great to see so many of you last week at Curriculum Night! As you can tell, we have hit the ground running, and continue to build community within our classrooms, in the hallways, the cafeteria, on the playground, and anywhere else we gather. The first 6-8 weeks of school is a crucial time to establish routines and expectations to help build the foundation for a successful school year. My grandmother always said ​”Begin as you intend to continue” – what wise advice that’s applicable to many facets of life!

I wanted to send a big thank you out to Ashley Lorenz, Gaggi Destefanis, and all those who contributed to such a successful Community Card push at Town Day! It was so much fun to see many past and current students and families, as well as meet many new faces as they stopped to purchase a card. Thank you all!

This week I will be having surgery on my foot, so will be out for a few days. I will be checking email while I am out, and responding as soon as I am able. There will be Principals on call should Vicki or Ms. Chevalier need additional support or to run something by an administrator. The plan is that I will return the beginning of the following week, with a knee scooter!!! I’m going to have to “glam” it up and perhaps add a horn. Watch out – I may be faster than I was before this happened!

Looking forward to the colors of Fall and the cooler temperatures it will bring, along with football and apple pie!

See you around town,


Thompson News & Events

Annual Parent Survey

The PTO would love to know you better! Every year, we send a survey to find out how you would like us to communicate with you, what your favorite events are, how you’d like to help, and the names/grades of your kids. Please take five minutes to tell us. Thank you!
PTO Survey:

Community Card Update

Where to Buy Community Cards:Community Card 2017 2018

-From Vicki at the front desk.
-From Gaggi DeStefanis or Ashley Lorenz at Pick-up and Drop-off.
-At The Book Rack, 13 Medford St
-Online at
Gotta have the card to get the deals. Get one for every wallet in the family!
They make for great birthday and holiday gifts for friends and neighbors too.

Join the Fall Family Sales effort!

Fall Family Sales is where WE the Thompson families sell cards to our friends, neighbors, and anyone else who might need a card. We sold 450 last year, let’s go for 500! How it works: sign out cards and sell them either A) on your own time to family, friends, at your kids’ sporting events, etc. and/or B) take the cold-call out of the equation and set up at select venues around town (soccer clinics, capitol square, etc).
To sign out cards, fill out the form coming home in your child’s backpack, or online here.
For a list of viable venues, contact or pick some specific times at

Other Volunteer Opportunities

-Farmer’s Market Sales Sept 27 & Oct 4. Signup here:
-Help put posters up around town at schools, parks, preschools. We have a list of approved spots you can cherry-pick from.
-Be a person-to-person sales contact at your preschool, yoga studio etc.
-Help contact some local realtors to ask if they want to buy cards to give to homebuyers.
-“Like” our Community Card Facebook page!
To volunteer, or if you have some great ideas brewing to further sell or market cards, email Ashley Lorenz at

Walk and Bike to School Day

Walk & Bike to SchoolWednesday October 4 is Walk and Bike to School Day, sponsored in part by the MA Department of Transportation. We have some cool prizes for bikers and walkers! Please walk/bike/walkpool to school on Wednesday! We need a couple of more volunteers to hand out stickers and prizes – email if you can arrive by 7:55 to join the fun.

Picture Day is Coming!

Mark your calendars: Picture Day is Thursday October 12th! Coffee Pond will once again be at Thompson that day to take individual and class photos. Watch for order forms coming home in your child(ren)’s folders this week.
The team of photographers coming to Thompson has just 3 hours to photograph 480+ students! Parent help is needed to make it all run smoothly. If you can sign up for an hour of time that morning to help classes prepare for their photographs your help would be greatly appreciated!

Welcome back from the Thompson Green Team

Green TeamAs many of you know, Thompson held 2 Zero Waste Days in 2016 and demonstrated that we could reduce lunch time waste by 97% if we switched to industrial composting. Our compelling data inspired the school system to convert to industrial composting last winter.
The lunch time composting system steps are:
Step 1: Dump your liquids
Step 2: Place your *clean* recyclables into the recycling bin
Step 3: Place all trash including *dirty* plastic into the trash bin
Step 4: Toss all food waste (even meats) and napkins into the compost bags
Step 5: Stack compostable trays
Check out the Green Team Compost Captain Video to understand the lunch time waste reduction sorting process: HERE!
Thompson Green Team is looking for parent volunteers and leaders! In addition to incorporating the classroom job of compost captain into the 3rd, 4th and 5th grade classrooms, we hope to go on some local nature adventures after school on Fridays. Please contact Elizabeth Rocco at if you are interested in being involved.
Thank you!
Elizabeth Rocco and Christa Kelleher,
Green Team Parent Leaders
The Thompson Green Team cares about the earth, the environment, and all living creatures. It aims to empower and support students and the broader Thompson community to take action to protect and preserve our environment. Guided by student interest, ideas, and energy, the Green Team provides opportunities and coordinates activities that will have a meaningful and positive impact.

Community News & Events

Arlington EATS Community Dinner

Arlington EATSThank you to all who joined us for this year’s first Community Dinner. Members of our community, three of our town selectman, volunteers and staff all gathered to share a delicious meal prepared by Thompson’s own, Ms. Sadia. Our next Community Dinner will be held on October 12. Please join us at the table.
If you cannot join us for a meal, there are many ways you can become involved with Arlington EATS:

To get food assistance:
To learn more:
To donate:
To volunteer:
To follow along:
To contact:

A Welcome from Arlington Education Foundation (AEF) to Thompson School, Fall 2017

AEFWelcome to the 2017-18 school year! AEF is our local education foundation, raising funds to support Pre-K through 12th grade educational initiatives that fall outside of the town’s public school budget, and typically beyond a PTO budget. It’s a volunteer-led organization, and its mission is to support Arlington’s students and teachers.

Last year, AEF distributed over $100,000 in grant money to educators for projects at all grade levels in the Arlington public schools. Thompson School alone has benefited from these AEF innovation grants in the form of Snow Shoes, Standing Desks, Meditation Techniques, and much more.

AEF is also funding initiatives that are relevant to our children beyond Thompson. Some grants are small: for example, Virtual Reality technology for foreign language and cultural immersion at AHS. Other grants are big: for example, in April 2017 AEF awarded a $30,000 to APS to develop a cohesive and strategic plan for the educational environment of the Gibbs School. The award provides stipends for 25 staff members, most of whom will be sixth grade teachers, funding both professional development and essential planning time.

APS teachers, district staff, and even parents can apply for grants from AEF. Danielle Gottesman is the AEF Bishop School Representative and is happy to talk to you about your grant ideas and guide you through the grant application process. Please feel free to email Judy with questions or ideas:

Importantly, please donate to AEF! We raise money through the STARS (School Teachers Are Really Special!) program honoring teachers; our annual gala (November); at the annual AEF Trivia Bee (March); and through regular donations on our website.


Girl Scouts is the place where a G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader) TM can transform her ideas into action, turn her questions into adventure, and grow her confidence through practice. She can discover all she can be and do when she has the right
tools and a safe space to shine. Together we can change the world. Attend a Discover Girl Scouts event to meet other families from your community, learn how to join a Girl Scout troop, and have your girl(s) participate in an activity.
Join us for an afternoon at camp on Saturday 9/23/17 from 2pm-4pm! Girls and families will go on a scavenger hunt, learn some fun songs, do a craft project, and learn about how to join a Girl Scout troop in their town. Camp Cedar Hill is located at 265 Beaver Street, Waltham, MA. Girl Scouts is for girls in Kindergarten-12th grade.

Questions? Email Molly Kazin,

Guiding Good Choices (GGC):

Offers proven techniques and effective tools to help parents. Please register by email with

Improve communication with their children
Develop healthy family values and behavioral expectations
Control and express anger constructively
Strengthen family bonds and trust
Prevent children from engaging in substance use and other risky behaviors

Monday nights ( 10/16, 10/23, 10/30, 11/6 & 11/13)
From 6:30-8:30
Whittemore Robbins House (670R Mass Ave)
GGC consists of 5 workshops, held once per week for five consecutive weeks. This is an evidence-based program that requires participants to attend all five workshops.


We’re happy to report that the ColorCycle program will be continuing in its third year at the Thompson School. Last year, we shipped off 72 pounds of used markers to Crayola! Thanks to the Thompson community, all this plastic will not go to waste!

To participate in the program, save markers that have been used up, and drop them off at school at your convenience. There are currently two collection bins – one in the lobby area and one outside the library on the second floor. We will continue to collect used markers throughout the year, so there is no deadline to bring them in. We accept all markers, any brand, including permanent markers (e.g. Sharpie) and dry erase markers. Please, no pens.

To learn more about the ColorCycle program and all of Crayola’s environmental initiatives, visit For specific questions about ColorCycle at Thompson, contact Thompson parent Vivianne Do. Thank you and keep recycling!

Arlington SEPAC

SEPAC is comprised of volunteers who dedicate time to provide resources for parents and advice to the district on matters pertaining to the education and safety of students with disabilities.

Contact: Inae Hwang at or,
For more information, visit our website at

OTTO Pizza: Draw Outside of the Box Contest

We would like to formally invite Thompson Elementary and its budding young artists to take part in OTTO’s ‘Draw Outside of the Box’ contest, in which students K-8 have the opportunity to design our new pizza box, and win their school $1000 for art education in the process. The initiative is designed to promote art education in schools, and to connect kids & community through art and design. The contest runs for three months (Sept. 18 through Dec. 18), during which student’s entries will be exhibited online in a Facebook photo album. The thirty designs with the most ‘likes’ at the end of this period will move on to the next phase of the contest. Of the thirty finalists, first, second and third place will be chosen by a panel of regional design experts (including Scott Nash, of Flat Stanley fame).

First Place: The winning contestant’s design will be professionally printed on thousands of pizza boxes to be used at OTTO locations throughout New England. The winner will also receive a pizza party (for up to 30 students) at his/her school, a $100 OTTO gift card, an OTTO t-shirt, and an OTTO cap. The winner’s school will receive a check for $1000 to support art education.
Second Place: Student will receive pizza party (for up to 30 students) at his/her school, a $50 OTTO gift card, an OTTO t-shirt and hat.
Third Place: Student will receive a pizza party (for up to 30 students) at his/her school, a $25 OTTO gift card, an OTTO t-shirt and hat.

For a full listing of rules and entry details, see:

PTO Fundraising


Support PTO

Shopping at Click the Amazon link from the Thompson PTO website and a share of your purchase will help the Thompson PTO.

Stop&Shop A+ Bonus Bucks Program

Thompson is participating in Stop&Shop A+ Bonus Bucks Program, in which our school receives a check based on the amount of purchases made by people with Stop&Shop cards. Enroll your Stop&Shop card. with Thompson’s school code: 07331.

Connect with Us


Co-Presidents: Diana Trudell & Nandana Mewada:,
Vice-President: Yael Beals:
Co-Treasurers: Sara Wilkinson & Carolyn Schneyer:,
Co-Secretaries: Emily Gauthier & Fiona Ehring:,
Fundraising Chair: Juliet Moir:
Arlington Community Card Co-Chairs: Ashley Lorenz & Gaggi DeStefanis:,
Enrichment Co-Chairs: Maf Terry &Tonja Bishop:,
Communications Chair: Danielle Gottesman:
Spirit & Appreciation Co-Chairs: Judy Hu & Melissa Crowley:,
Room Parents Chair: Sarah Gupta:
Volunteers Chair: Kate Murphy:

If you have news to share with the community, please email by Thursday at 12 noon to be included in the next newsletter.

Please note that we will only include news from the Thompson School and Town of Arlington. Announcements of interest to the Thompson community from other non-profit organizations may be included at our discretion.

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