Thompson School News : January 15, 2018

Save The Date

* New *

  • January 22, Monday – Grade 1 Discovery Museum
  • January 26, Friday – Spirit Day, Color by Grade: K- purple, 1- green, 2- blue, 3- yellow, 4- red, 5- Rainbow-ALL the colors!
  • January 27 – Thompson Winter Parents Party (Parents Only)
  • January 31, Wednesday – Deadline for ordering Thompson Yearbooks
  • January 31, Wednesday – Talk by Sara Fernandes Burd, Arlington’s new Director of Guidance & Social Emotional Learning
  • February 8, Thursday – Arlington EATS Community Dinner sponsored by the Thompson PTO

School Calendar

Click http://tinyurl.com/ndp8spb for Thompson’s Google Calendar to get school holidays, early release days, and PTO events on your own calendar. Click http://tinyurl.com/y7u5k2on for a printable version of this month’s calendar.

Thompson News & Events

PTO Meeting

Were you unable to join us for the last PTO meeting? Click here to read the meeting minutes: THOMPSON PTO Meeting Minutes 1/10/18.

Talk by Sara Fernandes Burd

Director of Guidance and Social-Emotional Learning for the Arlington Schools

Wednesday, January 31st, 7-8 pm at Thompson School

Join us for a conversation with Sara Fernandes Burd, Arlington’s new Director of Guidance and Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) and learn about SEL. Discover what SEL actually looks like for your student!

Mrs. Burd will share information about the field of SEL, discuss how Arlington is supporting the SEL skills of all their students and provide tips and resources on how families can support their students in and out of school. Q & A to follow.

Socks Please!

Socks 01Nurse Christina would appreciate sock donations as many children are coming in from recess with wet feet – thank you!

School Yearbook

2018 Thompson School Wide Yearbook
Ordering / Picture preference / Opting Out

We are pleased to announce that the annual Thompson School Wide Yearbook will be making a return for the 2017-2018 school year!

Helping our children hold onto memories of friends from all across the school, the soft-covered 24-page book will display every class (K-5) with the individual school portraits taken by CoffeePond earlier this year, along with teachers and administration. The price is $13.00.

For easy online ordering until Jan 31st, go to: www.coffeepond.com.
Under Order Central, select: Yearbooks
Enter School Password: Thompson2018

A form will be sent home in your child’s folder this week that should be filled out and returned if your child had a retake photo or if, for any reason, you do not want your child to be included in the book.

If you have any questions please direct them to Lisa at lisaslomba@gmail.com.

Thompson Winter Parents’ Party! – Saturday January 27th

Party 01

Join us for an exciting night of parents-only socializing, music, dancing, raffles, and pure fun! Enjoy a festive evening at Arlington’s historic Town Hall and support the Thompson PTO at the same time.

Look for invitations in your child’s backpacks. Additional information to come this week with details on cash/check ticketing, sponsorship, and some FAQs about the party. We hope to see you on Jan 27th!

To celebrate the rich diversity at Thompson, our DJ, parent Ariel Brown, would be happy to incorporate music from around the world. Make your requests here: tinyurl.com/WinterPartySongRequests
To purchase tickets in advance: https://tinyurl.com/ThompsonWinterPartyTickets
To lend a hand with set-up and overall party preparation: https://tinyurl.com/ThompsonWinterParty

Calling All Science Enthusiasts : Science Explo March 17th

Are you a professional in a scientific field or just a lover of all things science related? We need volunteers to set up and run interactive tables at the Explo in March! We are having an organizational meeting at Thompson on Tuesday, January 23rd if you are interested in participating.

Contact: Yael Beals and Chris Pacheco at thompsonexplo2018@gmail.com

Volunteer Opportunities

The Thompson PTO has many volunteer needs both small and big. If you’re looking for a way to give back to Thompson, here’s a list of ways you can help.

3D Printer Help

The PTO is looking for a parent experienced with 3D printers. If you have the expertise and some time available, we need someone that can tinker with the Thompson 3D printer, get it up and running and write up some basic operation instructions for teachers wanting to use it. Contact: Kate Murphy at thompsonschoolvolunteers@gmail.com

Game Night

Looking for board game enthusiasts to help us with this year’s Game Night. Join the planning team!

Contact diana_lutz@yahoo.com.

Winter Parent’s Party – Jan 27th

There are many things (both large and small) that the planning committee needs help with, from running errands for supplies in the weeks approaching, to helping set up and break down on the day of the event. Interested in helping?
Winter Party sign-up: https://tinyurl.com/ThompsonWinterParty
Contact: Kate Murphy at thompsonschoolvolunteers@gmail.com

Amazon Coordinator

The PTO needs someone to help promote the PTO/Amazon fundraising link. Thompson School earns 4-10% back on purchases made through the Thompson/Amazon page but shoppers must use the link on the PTO website.

Interested in helping get the word out? Contact: Kate Murphy at thompsonschoolvolunteers@gmail.com

Help Throughout the Year

To check all current volunteer opportunities: http://tinyurl.com/ThompsonPTOVolunteers

Connect with Us

THOMPSON PTO BOARD

Nandana Mewada, Co-President
Diana Trudell, Co-President
Yael Beals, Vice-President
Danielle Gottesman, Communications Chair

If you have news to share with the community, please email ThompsonPTOevents@gmail.com 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.

PTO Meeting Minutes – Jan. 10, 2018

Principal

Karen Donato

Teacher’s Rep

None

PTO Board

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

Thompson Community

Diana Trudell, Carolyn Schneyer

Introductions – All

Minutes approval – All

School updates: Principal – Ms. Donato

  • Moved into new space, some things remain to be done
  • Kids and teachers feeling good in their new classrooms
  • Working on pest (mice) issues on main floor
  • Dealing with snow/ice, parking issues
    • A concern was raised that no path was cleared from the Everett St. park entrance to the pineapple entrance.
    • Another concern, should we have indoor arrival in cases of excess snow? Also, how to communicate indoor arrival to parents. What are the criteria for indoor arrival?
  • School budget discussions, presentation to School Committee tomorrow (1/11)
    • Special request for an additional social worker to be in place before need becomes critical. This request will be prioritized over a request for another fourth grade teacher.
    • Adding full-time Kindergarten assistants.
  • Sarah Burd Guest Speaker- NANDANA
    • Sara Burd will speak in the multi-purpose room on 12/31/18 at 7:00pm- topics will include social and emotional direction for the school district.
  • PTO Sponsoring an Arlington EATS Community Meal (2/8)- DIANA
    • PTO presence to better get to know members of our in need population.
    • Recommend sponsoring a meal, $750 donation
      • Volunteers
      • Set-up
      • Serving
      • Eating
      • Clean-up
    • Usually serve 80-100 people
    • 2nd Thursday of each month
    • Half of the attendees are part of the Thompson community
    • Volunteers are encouraged to share in the meal (if desired, a donation may be made to defray the cost of the meal)
    • Send out a flyer/email asking for volunteers to sponsor the event and contributions
    • Decision made to go forward with this
  • Twinkie- SARA W.
    • Mrs. Foley’s 3rd grade class is requesting reimbursement for a vet bill to check out a tumor.
    • Decision made to go forward with this
    • Note: This is not a regular thing, don’t want to set a precedent.
  • School Council election (March- April for 2018-2019)
    • Regular meetings are not occuring because of scheduling issues. Morning meetings are not possible for some members.
    • Usual focus is advocating for building renovation/ improvement. There have not been any big issues to discuss so far this year.
    • Need new elections for new reps. PTO should handle the election process. (Look into how it was done in the past)
    • The council should also have a community rep.
      School council vets school improvement plans

      • School improvement plan is based on a district plan,
      • set goals in different areas and how to accomplish those goals
    • Enrichment
  • Grants- MEGHAN
    • YEAH!!! We got a grant! $595 4th Grade MFA field trip from the MA Cultural Council. Include mention of this in the newsletter.
    • Working on Bruins Foundation Grant to promote physical activity
      • Fit Girls
      • Yoga
    • It would be helpful to meet early in the year to make plans regarding grants
    • S.T.E.M. Grant 2.5K
      • Rolling quarterly applications
    • Need some ideas
  • Photos- If identifiable, need to check with the office before publishing
  • Enrichment 2018- MAF AND TONJA
    • Norah Dooley for K-2 storytelling, with focus on diversity/ tolerance. Including workshops for the 2nd grade
    • Improv Boston Anti-bullying program for grades 3-5
    • Kidstock for Kindergarteners
    • 1st grade weather program
    • Check on 3-D printing in the past
  • Communications: DANIELLE & RICH
    • Newsletter-
      • tweaking format for email version
      • Paper version monthly
      • emails go out via Mailchimp which collects data regarding how often the email is opened, read and or clicked through.
      • Last Winter the numbers were at about ⅓ opened, trended down after a while.
      • After email is sent, the newsletter is posted to the Thompson website, used to be auto fed to Twitter and Facebook. Due to parental protest regarding personal info being too public, it is now only on the website.
      • Revisit in one year, suggestions for changes/ improvements to the newsletter at that time.
        • Is Monday AM the best time to send it out?
        • Deadline for content is Thursday, editing and compiling typically happens over the weekend.
        • Possible to experiment with timing and get feedback via Mailchimp. Effort vs. reward?
        • Should use a consistent style for the newsletter, makes it easier to input content
          • This can be tabled for a smaller group discussion.
        • Link to newsletter should be tweeted/ posted on Facebook
        • PTO Google calendar is great!
    • Website
      • On WordPress platform
      • Goals
        • Keep costs down (now hosted on Amazon, free)
        • Secure: https
        • Simple and clean for easy maintenance
      • How to use it
        • Resource for incoming Kindergarten parents
        • Mirrors info in newsletter *need to update content- please take a look and give feedback on what needs to be done
      • Shopping cart tool- now using paypal (better option?)
      • Work on optimizing for mobile as well as computer. Multiple platforms make this a significant undertaking.
      • Decision that optimizing for mobile is a high priority.
  • Debrief:
    • Community Card Fall Sales- ASHLEY, GAGGI
      • Total sold is approx. 1600 out of 2000 printed (some were given away to new families)
      • 61% Town Day, 13% Family sales, 20% Book Rack, Other +/- 16% (School events, farmers market, etc.)
      • Spirit Wear- JUDY, MELISSA
        • Everything distributed, but still many to give away. (esp.Magnets)
        • For Next Time; possibly make smaller sizes available
        • Next Spirit Wear sale in 2 years, (same time frame as previous sale)
      • Holiday Help- DIANA
        • 2 families with 7 kids
        • Next year, possible request for gift cards for new families
      • Book Fair- DIANA
        • $2200 commission, $100 GF Book Rack, Ms Mak’s & Reading specialists list fulfilled. $1088 Sponsorship collected ($742 Spiritwear, $286 Book fair – covering 40 kids) $60.34 remaining.
      • Helena’s- DIANA – Very low attendance, consider doing it less frequently or at a different time of year. (Ie. just before Winter Party)
  • Winter Parent’s Party 1/27 Gaggi DeStefanis & Ashley Lorenz
    • Need volunteers for set-up/clean-up
    • Invites for teachers this week
    • Flyers next week
      • Paypal
      • cash/check
      • Sponsorship option
    • Room parent email next week
    • Email graphics via Karen
    • Reach out to alumni parents
    • Advertise via Arlington Family Connection and Arlington Parents List, Invite future Thompson parents
  • Game Night 3/2 Diana Trudell & Shauna Pellauer
    • Seeking volunteers
  • Science Explo. 3/17 Yael Beals & Chris Pacheco
    • Send email via room parents
    • Set up meeting for those interested in helping
  • Upcoming PTO meetings- Wednesday, February 14 from 7 to 9 pm, Thompson Library.