FORJ/RCI Meeting – December 20th

From Amy Behrens and the FORJ/RCI planning team

Dear Parents,

As part of our effort to create a welcoming and inclusive environment, the Newton Public Schools are focusing on helping teachers, students, and parents talk about racism and how to reduce bias. In order to facilitate this important work among parents, we have contracted with parent coach, diversity educator and NPS parent, Amy Behrens, to support parent groups working on community building and racial justice. She and her planning team of FORJ/RCI – Families Organizing for Racial Justice and awareness of Race, Culture and Identity – are supporting parent volunteers from all of the Newton public schools on a monthly basis. Parents can meet each other and form groups that facilitate the development of inclusive communities that promote racial justice. Our goal is to have an active team of interested parents at each school who meet on their own and participate in the monthly all-school meetings, which offer opportunities for further education, team planning time and networking. Parents are welcome to join at any time.

Our next meeting is on Wednesday, December 20th 7:30-9pm at Mason-Rice Elementary School (149 Pleasant St.). Superintendent Fleishman, Newton METCO Director, Maricel Sheets, and teacher Jen Tomaneng will be sharing and answering questions about the “Courageous Conversations” program being rolled out over a 5-year period in our schools. Schools teams may also have time to meet.

Please RSVP here: https://goo.gl/forms/L5ltoDopdCw9U1jg1 or email amy@amybehrens.com to let Amy know you’d like to be on the email list for more information about FORJ project.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Amy Behrens and the FORJ/RCI planning team

Winter weather

From David Fleishman, NPS Superintendent

Dear NPS Families,

With winter weather in the forecast this weekend, I can no longer delay sending you our winter weather reminder.

The time at which the decision is made to close or delay school is dependent upon the weather forecast and our discussions with City officials. You will be notified as soon as the decision is made so that your family can plan accordingly. Notifications will be posted on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram), district website, and TV/radio.

Safety is our number one priority as we consider the weather forecast, as well as street, sidewalk, and school parking lot conditions. We are very sensitive to the childcare challenges that you face when schools are closed and only do so if our analysis indicates we should. More detailed information on the evaluation process for determining school closings and delays can be found at: http://www.newton.k12.ma.us/weather.

Enjoy the winter weather and hopefully you won’t be hearing my voice too often in the coming months.

Sincerely,
David Fleishman
Superintendent

Upcoming Events for Teens at the Newton Free Library

Teen Crafterhours, December 4th, 7:00 pm, second floor Teen Area: Meet once a month a Monday night to make crafts and eat snacks. This week, make mittens out of felted wool and eat snacks! Grades 7-12.

Anime/Manga Club, December 6th, 4:00 pm, Computer Center: Come meet on the first Wednesday of every month and hang out with lovers of all things anime! Activities will range from anime screenings, to discussion of our favorite series, manga share and swap, anime-themed crafts, cosplay workshops, art trades and more!  Yummy Japanese snacks will be served. Grades 6-12.

Typewriter Poetry,  December 11, 7:00 pm, second floor Teen Area: Get creative with the monthly Typewriter Poetry group. Get together to use old-school typewriters and write poems for library patrons on the spot! Grades 7-12.

Human Rights Commission award ceremony

The Newton Human Rights Commission is delighted to announce that it has selected Dr. Janet E. Helms as the recipient of the 2017 Human Rights Award. This award recognizes a resident or employee working in the city who has demonstrated consistent, ongoing work in the field of human rights.

Mayor Setti Warren and Alisa Caira, Josie Joseph, Kimia Tabatabaei, and Khyla Turner, students from Newton North and Newton South High Schools, will also be recognized for their dedication to the issue of human rights in the Newton Community.

The award ceremony is open to the public and will take place on December 5th at 7:00 pm at the Druker Auditorium located in the Newton Free Library at 333 Homer Street. If you would like to attend, please RSVP (requested, not required) to slao@newtonma.gov.

Upcoming talk: how parents can help their students with writing assignments

Do you find it challenging to help your upper elementary or middle school student with writing assignments without conflict or tears? Jane Hirschhorn, a professional writing tutor, will offer 10 easy, practical tips parents can use to help their students with writing assignments.

This free talk is geared toward parents of students in grades 4 through 7. It will be held on December 6th at 7:30 pm in Room B of the Newton Free Library.

Holiday Lighting Ceremony

Start the Holiday Season off with a cheerful evening of songs, hot chocolate and fun! In the War Auditorium, sing-along with the Stacey Peasley Band – an award-winning band whose music is joyful and playful – as they play your favorite holiday songs. Then go outside to the front steps of City, and enjoy some hot chocolate and cookies courtesy of Newton Community Pride, or samples of Hood egg nog.

As you wear your complimentary glow-in- the-dark necklace you can watch a special
holiday “Rockettes” performance by the Creative Dance Steps Studio. All of this excitement builds up to the Grande Finale of Mayor Setti Warren flipping the switch that turns the grounds into a twinkling winterland!

New this year…”Stuff a Cruiser”! Please bring an unwrapped gift to fill a police cruiser with toys as part the Village Bank’s Holiday Gift Drive! In the spirit of giving for the season, please bring a donation for Food Pantries.

For more information, visit www.newtoncommunitypride.org or call 617-796-
1540.

Maine Arts Camp Open House

If you are looking for a great overnight summer camp where your creative 9-16 year-old
can thrive, please join Friday morning at the home of Newton parent Anabel Cable to find out why Maine Arts Camp could be the perfect choice.

Located on the campus of Colby College, MAC is a small, friendly camp community that
is big on empathy and personal growth as well as creative opportunity. With an
extensive program of activities covering visual arts, theatre, music, dance, culinary arts,
robotics and rocketry, film-making, individual sports and more, all taught by
professional educators, and with access to Colby’s state-of- the-art facilities, Maine Arts
Camp offers exceptionally high quality instruction across a wide range of interests.

Find out more at www.maineartscamp.com. If you would like to attend the Open
House/Coffee Morning and meet camp director Rick Mades, please RSVP to
anabelcable@comcast.net for the address.

Maine Arts Camp Open House/Coffee Morning
December 8th , 8:30 – 10:00 am

Sign up for Boys & Girls Club Winter Programs Starting Now

Winter Basketball League for grades K-8 began Saturday (December 2nd ) with late sign ups still open and Boston Fencing returns for weekly practices beginning December 5th.
In addition to the Power Hour study times, this season there will be many new programs for making learning fun: including visits to the Museum of Fine Arts, Russian School of Math, Card Game Club, Story Time (for grades 1-3), Lego Civics with Right Brain Curriculum, 3-D Printing, Chess Club, and more!

The Newton BGC provides academic, athletic, and social activities that enable young people to grow as caring, responsible members of the community. All students are welcome here.

To sign up or explore the  programming, please visit: http://newtonbgc.com/.

PARENTING-Let’s Discuss!

Join Cindy Kaplan MA, Family/Parent Coach for some great discussions right in Newton Center! Thursday evenings, once a month. Either sign up for individual discussions or for all!

December 14th: What is Mindful Parenting and Why Does it Matter?
January 18th: When Your Kid Pushes Your Buttons and What You Can Do About it?
February 15th: Does Your Child’s Anxiety Make You Anxious?
March 15th: Step Out of Power Struggles and into Problem Solving
April 12th: What If You Are Not on the Same Child Rearing Page as Your Partner?
May 17th: Mastering the Art of Setting Clear Boundaries

Click Here: http://cindykcoaching.com/product/parenting-discussions/ or go to www.cindykcoaching.com to register.  Space is limited to 10 participants per evening.
Questions? e-mail cindy@cindykcoaching.com.

December events at Historic Newton

HOLIDAY SALE AT HISTORIC NEWTON MUSEUM SHOPS
Find distinctive gifts – all on sale – at Historic Newton’s two museum shops. Choose among cards made with fabric hand-woven by children at our fall Hayfest, as well as reproductions of watercolors painted by 19th century Jackson Homestead resident Ellen Jackson, and 3D images. Pick up a candle or a jar of our custom-made pear jam for a hostess gift or stocking stuffer. From picture books about the Underground Railroad to Newton memorabilia, our selection targets all ages.

Everyone receives a 10% discount; Historic Newton members take 25% off.
Jackson Homestead, 527 Washington Street and the Durant Kenrick House, 286 Waverley Avenue
Ongoing through December 31st,  Wednesday – Friday, 11:00 am – 5:00 pm, Saturday and Sunday, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm

Information: 617-796-1450 or 617-641-9142


HOLIDAY CANDLELIGHT TOUR OF DURANT-KENRICK HOUSE
Built in 1734, the Durant-Kenrick House was the home of families who observed the winter holidays in different ways. Take a special tour of the house by candlelight led by Historic Newton staff, enjoy winter caroling, and sip hot cider and cocoa. Kids can create winter crafts, too. Space is limited. Advanced registration is recommended through historicnewton.org

December 17th, 5:30 pm
Durant-Kenrick House and Grounds, 286 Waverley Avenue
Admission: $10 for non-members, $5 for Historic Newton members and children ages 10 and over. Children under 10, free.
Registration: www.newtonma.gov/candletour
Information: 617-641-9142