Weekly Newsletter

April 27, 2023

Message from Principal Emma Liebowitz

The fourth grade at Sanderson Academy, in coordination with Principal Liebowitz, is hosting a pet supply drive for the remainder of the school year. Your donations will be distributed to various local shelters and rescue organizations in need. Any food or supplies are welcome. Shelters are most in need of unopened wet/dry pet food and treats, bath-size towels, cat litter, new or gently used leashes/collars/harnesses, and toys. You can also donate various cleaning and office supplies or larger items like crates. Each item donated helps shelters stretch their dollars and help more animals and their owners. Thank you in advance for your generosity and support.

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Congratulations Ms. Prew!

Ms. Alyssa Prew and her husband welcomed a beautiful baby boy on April 17th. Welcome Baby George to the Sanderson community! We can't wait to meet you!


Monday, May 1 - All School Grounds Clean-Up at 2:00

Wednesday, May 3 - 1:50 Release

May 8 -12 - Teacher Appreciation Week

May 10 - 1:50 Release

May 15 - 19 - Camp Keewaydin

Wednesday, May 17 - 1:50 Release

Thursday, May 18 - First Grade to Fish Ladder

Monday, May 22 - LEC at 3:30

Wednesday, May 24 - 1:50 Release

Thursday, May 25 - Story Telling/Drumming at 2:00

Friday, May 26 - Ed Pop the Magician at 2:00

Monday, May 29 - No School

Wednesday, May 31 - Fifth Grade to Wilder Homestead

Friday, June 2 - Sanderson Arts Night starting at 6:00

Link to Sanderson Academy calendar.

PTO News

Hello. During teacher and staff appreciation week (May 8 - 12) we'd like volunteers to cover recess and lunch (11:30 am - 1:30 pm) so our teachers and staff can take a break! Please sign up for ALL times you are available at this LINK. A paper copy will also be sent home. A schedule will be shared with you by May 5th. Please contact Katherine McCusker at mccuskerkj@gmail.com with questions.

Thank you!

Sanderson PTO

The next PTO meeting is Tuesday, May 2nd virtually at 7pm. Here is the link: meet.google.com/gab-gqpa-xvo. New members are always welcome!

MCAS Information

Below is the schedule. We ask that students get good rest and eat nutritious meals. If your child(ren) will be out on the day of testing, please notify the office as soon as possible. We also ask that you encourage your child(ren) to do their best. Thank you!


Thursday, April 27 - 5th - Session 1

Friday, April 18 - 5th - Session 2

Tuesday, May 2 - 6th - Session 1

Thursday, May 4 - 6th - Session 2

Tuesday, May 9 - 4th - Session 1

Tuesday, May 16 - 4th - Session 2

Thursday, May 18 - 3rd - Session 1

Tuesday, May 23 - 3rd - Session 2


Wednesday, May 24 - 5th - Session 1

Thursday, May 25 - 5th - Session 2

Health Office News from Nurse Loranna

Greetings from the health office! It is finally starting to feel like spring is here with our flowers blooming, muddy puddle jumping and unfortunately, ticks are also beginning to resurface.

The best way to avoid tick related illness is by prevention and quick identification if a tick attaches. Wear bug spray and long pants/shirts when in grassy areas where ticks thrive. Do a thorough tick check after spending time outdoors with extra attention to behind ears and on hairline, armpits, groin area, behind knees, between toes, belly button and check around ankle areas for any crawling ticks. Ticks like to go where it is the warmest, they often crawl up ankles and legs to find a warm place to attach. A good time to check children is after a bath or shower and before putting on pajamas. If you find an embedded tick, it is important to remove it promptly. Using fine- tipped tweezers grasp the tick as close to your skin as possible, taking care not to squish the body or head and pull straight out with steady even pressure. Cleanse the area and monitor for any symptoms or rashes. It is normal to have some minor redness at the area of the bite. Not everyone gets a bullseye rash but if you do find one, take a picture and reach out to your health care provider. Symptoms such as headache, fatigue, swelling/pain of joints, muscle pain and fever or flu like symptoms can be symptoms of lyme disease. A tick needs to be attached for at least 24 hours in order to transmit any diseases, so frequent tick checks can help prevent any illness.

See the link for more information:


Preschool News from Ms. Freeman

Preschoolers are happy and excited to be back at school and with their friends. This week Ms. Katie brought us fertilized chicken eggs and an incubator. We talked about how the incubator will act like a mother hen, keeping the eggs warm and safe while they develop. The egg turner inside the incubator will help the baby chicks move and exercise while they grow. We are so excited to try to hatch baby chicks!

We are also observing tadpoles. We discovered frog eggs in the vernal pool and gathered a few to keep in our science center. They hatched quickly and we are watching them swim around and hide under the rocks and leaves. We are excited to watch them grow and change.

We are also grateful to the person or people who helped cut and clear the tree from our outdoor classroom. It was a wonderful surprise! Thank you.

The photos show preschoolers exploring the vernal pool using nets and small containers.

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Preschool News from Ms. Melanie

Our baby chicks have begun hatching! Before break, we started keeping a chart, counting down the days until the first possible hatch. We knew that we could expect them to arrive in the first few days we were back–and we were right! Our first chick arrived on Monday and we have six so far. We have been learning about the life cycle of chickens and making entries into our Spring Detective Journals, drawing eggs and chicks, and even drawing some of the equipment we use to keep the chicks healthy and safe. We shared new words like “brooder” and “incubator” and we drew those in our journals as well. This has been a wonderfully successful and satisfying project! We love to watch the chicks and to hear them. A true sign that Spring is here!

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Kindergarten News from Ms. Sarah

This week was all about reconnecting with our class community, re-establishing our routines (with some spring updates), and introducing some new units of study for the spring! We opened this week by sharing what we hope to do at school this spring and we discussed how our class promise (to take care of ourselves, each other, and our school) will help all of our goals to be possible. We also played a game to re-activate our muscle memory response to our attention-getting signals.

We reviewed our class expectations through a role-playing activity in which small groups of students acted out situations that show following our expectations and the rest of the class guessed which expectation they were demonstrating. The kids were so brave in performing their skits and came up with great scenarios about moving our bodies safely in the classroom, following classroom routines, showing respectful listening, and solving problems with friendly words!

First Grade News from Ms. Wyckoff

Welcome back from April vacation! We hope you all had a restful and enjoyable break. As we return from break, we are revisiting classroom expectations and routines and sharing about our time away from school. In science we are wrapping up our unit on the survival of living things. In each living things “station” children are comparing and contrasting living things, creating an animal out of playdoh and giving it a body covering which helps it survive and in the third station children look through a variety of pictures of camouflaged animals and decide what animal it is. Camouflaging is another way animals survive. Although we were away for vacation, our Brook trout continued to grow beautifully here in the classroom! Since our Brook trout arrived in December children take time each week to observe the trout and keep track of their growth and observations in their trout journal. This week first graders focused on their different body parts that are becoming more noticeable such as their gills, various fins and eyes. Check out these busy Brook trout below!

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Second Grade News from Ms. McMillan

I hope everyone enjoyed their April break! We are getting back into the groove of things and getting ready to wrap up the school year. In math, we have been learning about money! This week we have been learning about the different coins and what they look like and what the value of each coin is. The other day, we learned how to count coins. Some students are choosing to count by skip counting and others have been choosing to count using hairy/alien money. Feel free to ask your child about which way they like to count coins.

We are also wrapping up our fossil unit. This week we are reading different narratives about paleontologists. Next week we are going to start writing our own narratives. Students will pretend to be a paleontologist and will write about their experiences.

Lastly, the class has emptied their marble jar! They have voted on a class party and have chosen a pajama, pizza, movie party. They will be having the party Thursday afternoon. They have earned it and are very excited! Way to go 2nd grade!

Third Grade News from Ms. Carole

It’s finally planting season in third grade! This week each student received a packet of seeds from Fedco Seeds, and they were charged with learning about what they will be planting. They wrote brief notes about their item, and will soon be making a design out of some of the seeds. These will be used in our “Seed Museum,” coming to a display case in the foyer next week.We also had a great time working with our little buddies on Wednesday cleaning and weeding out the garden areas. Soon we’ll be building trellises and planting.

In Language Arts we have been working on writing nonfiction answers to scientific questions. By introducing, stating, and elaborating upon the topic and answer, it turns out an answer can turn into a paragraph!

Next week we are looking forward to checking out the baby animals and history at Hancock Shaker Village.

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Fourth Grade News from Ms. Lagoy

In our current SEL unit, students will learn what it means to have a growth mindset and apply it to trying new things. Students will also learn about optimism and confidence. At the end of the unit, students will be able to: -understand what it means to have a growth mindset vs. a fixed mindset, -explain the brain science behind a growth mindset, -understand the benefits of trying new things, -express optimism in a variety of situations, and -define confidence and differentiate between confidence and bragging. In math class, we are tackling our geometry unit. There is lots of vocabulary for students to learn in this unit. We will be partnering a lot of this vocabulary with body actions to help solidify our new learning. Be sure to ask your kiddo what they are learning in math. They should have lots to share with you in the coming weeks.

Fifth Grade News from Ms. Johnson

Sixth Grade News from Ms. Lilly

This week we’ve been getting back into the school routine and refreshing our brains for the math MCAS next week on Tuesday, May 2nd and Thursday, May 4th. We started this week off reviewing some ancient Egyptian pyramids and then spent some time mummifying apple slices. Over the next two weeks we will take measurements and weigh our apples to observe the impact of the salt and baking soda on the apple slices. We also worked as a class to separate and count our Penny War fundraiser. The students won by a landslide! It was a fun, easy way to raise money for our end of the year activities! We have also started a new book in ELA, Two Roads. We spent some time on Monday gaining background knowledge on the era of The Great Depression and World War 1, when this book takes place. We will spend the next few weeks discussing the characters and how they develop throughout the book.

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Library News from Ms. Wilson


We are wrapping up our month-long celebration of poetry in the library. Sixth graders just put the finishing touches on their “Where I’m From” poetry lines, which they will share at our next All School meeting. Sixth graders will also be hosting Poem in Your Pocket Day during lunch this Friday. They will explain to students what Poem in Your Pocket Day is about, then they will pass poems for each student to share, trade, or keep in their pockets. Perhaps you will find some inspiration in your child’s pocket on laundry day!

Other poetry highlights have included found poetry collages with fourth grade, investigation of Massachusetts poets with third grade, outdoor haiku poetry with second grade, and collaborative poetry writing with first grade. Sanderson has no shortage of creative thinkers!


A big THANK YOU to everyone that participated in the bookplate fundraiser. Together we raised about $300, which we will put toward new comfy chairs for the library. Thank you for supporting our valuable community space!


Next month, the older grades will be focusing on Digital Citizenship and exploring Sphero Robots while younger grades will be talking about identity and how books can serve as “windows and mirrors.” Stay tuned for more!

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Instrumental Music News from Miss Julie

Our school band members have been busy preparing for several upcoming performances. On May 24th, our band will be joining bands from other elementary schools in the district in a joint concert with the Shelburne Falls Military Band (SFMB). The concert is called Band Together and will be held at BSE. The evening will include two selections that the student bands will play with the SFMB. The Shelburne Falls Military Band is the oldest continuously-running band in the country, performing since 1835. They play free concerts across western Franklin County every summer, so bring a lawn chair and come listen to some great music! What an exciting opportunity for young musicians to play alongside seasoned musicians in this joint concert!

In another performance opportunity, the Sanderson Academy Band and the Third-grade Recorder class will be performing at Sanderson Academy’s Arts Night on June 2nd. We hope to see you at one or both of these exciting events!

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month

The PTO wanted to share some resources for National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Many resources can be found at this website: Child Welfare Information Gateway. Below is an example of a tip sheet available.

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Swim Lessons

The below flyer has been sent home to caregivers.
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Community News

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Guys and Dolls Jr.

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April Lunch Menu

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May Lunch Menu

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