November Newsletter

Newton school


Greetings from Newton School,

November is my favorite month because it is when we talk about giving thanks

with children. At Newton School we play, learn, celebrate and always thank the

people near and far who make our lives special. We try to capture the feeling of

the caring heart for our young students. It is critical that as adults we model acts of

kindness and gratitude for our children. Join us this month by doing something

special as a family.

There is no school for students on November 5th and 11th. November 5th is Election

Day and a Teacher Work Day. Please remember to vote on November 5th.

November 11th is the day we celebrate Veteran’s Day.

We also are busy making cards to thank our local veterans. These will be given out

by our friends at Applebees on November 11th . Remember to thank those who

have served or are currently serving.

On November 20th we have a Family Event called Learn in Motion from 5:30-6:30.

Families will engage in fun activities to celebrate learning. Our Scholastic Book

Fair will run from November 18th to November 21st .

Newton will once again have an annual Turkey Trot on the half day before the

holiday. On November 27th we will dismiss school at 11:55 for the Thanksgiving


We want to thank our Community Readers for making our Pajama Night a special

event and special thanks to our PTO for sponsoring our trips and events.

We give special thanks for our Newton family and the love that makes us family.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Melodie Goodwin


Oral language skills are an important part of our kindergarten literacy curriculum. During the first months of school we spend a lot of time developing speaking and listening skills. At this time of the year the children are also enjoying many games to improve their phonological awareness. This includes recognizing initial sounds, sounds within words, syllables and rhyming words.

November is a busy month in kindergarten. During this month students will be discussing how each of their families is very special and unique. Ask your child about the “special glue” that holds families together!

All of our kindergartners will soon be introduced to the Lexia Reading program in the computer lab. It is a web-based reading program that provides targeted instruction and practice for each student at his/her own level. Information will be sent home so that students may start working on Lexia at home. Please allow your student to work independently as this program is designed to meet them at their appropriate level.

Mrs. Encarnacao, Ms. Swist, Ms. Neeley, Mrs. Hurteau


Dear First Grade Families,

We are comfortable now in our first grade classrooms! Personalities are shining through, friendships are blossoming, and routines are established.

We have been exploring:

  • Classroom Kindness/Friendship Unit- filling each other’s buckets and using our manners.
  • Celebrating Veterans Day with homemade cards and poetry.
  • Continuing to follow The Three Rules of Respect during Playworks.
  • Seasonal changes, and life cycles of butterflies, apples, and pumpkins in science.
  • Math fact practice and strategies for both addition and subtraction.
  • Identifying Action Words (verbs), Naming Words (nouns) and Describing Words (Adjectives) in sentences.
  • Identifying the subject and the predicate of sentences.
  • Writing complete sentences (Capital, End mark)
  • Oral reading fluency daily practice.
Thank you for your continued support at home. We enjoyed seeing you at Open House,
Pajama Night and Parent Conferences! Please continue reading each night and
practicing those math facts!


Ms. Hayes, Ms. Warren, Mrs. Eve

Second Grade

Greetings Families!

It's hard to believe it's already November. October was full of exciting family events and conferences. It was great seeing many of you at these events.

In our Wit and Wisdom reading curriculum, students are learning about change, which is so fitting for this time of year. We are reading stories about how changes in weather impact people, animals and plants. Students are learning how to identify main idea and details and write about what they have learned.

In math, we are doing Module 2, which focuses on measurement. Students are having a blast measuring in centimeters and meters while determining which unit of measure is most appropriate. We are also using a ruler as a number line to solve 2-step word problems.

In Science we are learning about animals, adaptations and habitats. In writing we are doing some reflective writing on what we are thankful for. As a team, we are thankful for your continued support.

Stay Warm!

Mrs.Palermo, Ms. Darmanchev, Ms.Sherry and Ms.Silk

Third Grade

Dearest Third Grade Families,

It was wonderful to see so many families at our Open House and for Guardian/Teacher Conferences. If you missed the chance to meet with us, it’s not too late. Please reach out to us anytime. We are always happy to meet with you.

Important Dates:

There is NO SCHOOL on:

  • November 5th

  • November 11th

  • November 28th

  • November 29th

  • Scholastic Book Fair will be November 18th-21st

  • On November 27th, our annual Turkey Trot will take place. This is a half day.

A Note About Weather:

With the cold weather quickly approaching, please make sure your child is dressed appropriately with layers each day. If possible, please put your child’s name on things so we can help make sure that your child returns home with the proper clothing.

Fluency in Third Grade:

Mathematically, we continue to strengthen math fact fluency. As we emphasized at conferences, our goal is to have all third graders fluent in addition, subtraction, and multiplication facts by the end of this year. Please help us achieve this goal, by working with your child at home. We appreciate your partnership in achieving this goal..

If someone is fluent in speaking another language or playing an instrument, there is a smooth, graceful, and easy quality to it. The same is true with reading skills. Reading fluency is a child’s ability to read a book, or other text, correctly, quickly, and with expression. A fluent reader doesn’t have to stop and decode each word. Rather, most of the words can be read automatically. This frees the reader to focus their attention on what the story or text is about. For that reason, fluency is critically important. It is the bridge between decoding words and understanding what has been read.

You can help you child develop reading fluency by doing a few simple and fun activities.

Paired or “buddy” reading

The easiest, and best way to help your child develop fluency is to sit with your child and read!

Reread favorite books

Another way you can help develop fluency is to build a tall stack of books that your child can read quickly and easily. Encourage your child to reread favorite books over and over again. With each reading, you will notice your child reading a bit easier, a bit faster, and with a bit more confidence and expression.

Record it

Another fun way to practice reading and build fluency is to have your child create their own audio books. This can be done simply with a tape recorder or audio recording feature or app (like Audioboo) on your phone. Regardless of the method you choose, your child will be practicing what they want to record and that reading practice is critical. Sharing your audio recordings with family and friends is a great motivator too! (Reading Rockets)

We look forward to working with you during the winter season, and we hope you have many chances to snuggle up with a great book.

With warmest regards,

Mrs. Lagoy, and Mr. Stone

Fourth Grade

Dear Fourth Grade Families,

Can you believe it's already November? We have had a great first two months of school. We got to go on our first Field Trip last month and had a blast. This month we have some fun things coming up. At the end of this month Ms. Lively’s class will be starting swimming, then Mrs. G’s class will begin, followed by Ms. Skiff. This month we will be continuing our focus in math on multiplication, up to four digits by one digit and two digit by two digits. Please, help your child practice their multiplication facts so this can be easier for them. In reading we are focusing on comprehension skills, including text dependent questions where students have to answer the question using evidence from the text. The Turkey Trot will take place at Newton on November 27th.


The Fourth Grade Teachers

Art, Music, Robotics, and Physical Education

Hello from the Art, Music, Robotics, and Physical Education Programs,

We recently finished our Fundamental Skill unit in Physical Education and are currently working through our Cooperative Gaming unit. Students will be working together in a variety of games. We will then transition into our basketball unit following the Thanksgiving break. Students are also working out on the Yak Track in preparation for our annual Turkey Trot. The Turkey Trot is a multi-lap run around our back field that we do the day before the Thanksgiving break.

It’s been busy in the Art Room this rotation. We have two student teachers that will be in our room all year. Ms. Shiko is from Mount Holyoke and Ms. Chambers is from UMass. Our second rotation is well underway and so many fun and messy things are happening. In Fourth grade, we are making warm and cool color leaf paintings in which students used cropping and overlapping to create an artistic view. We were also working on their oil pastel Sea Turtles in which we created starburst patterns and are using a salt and watercolor technique for the backgrounds. Third grade is working on drawing trucks using simple shapes and then creating a collage background with various kinds of construction and painted papers. Second grade painted warm and cool colors leaves. As well as ornamental corn paintings. We created a grid to place kernels in and practiced mixing colors with tempera paint to make new colors of kernels. One of our First grades worked with Ms. Shiko to make Rainbow Fish using oil pastels. Then they all followed a guided draw for scarecrows with crayons then used a watercolor resist for backgrounds. Finally, Kindergarten experimented with many different techniques. We created fall foliage painting using cotton balls and clothes pins, We painted by rolling acorns through paint. We did a leaf rubbing. We learned to tie a simple knot and make fringe. We created a large dot using Q-tips in the style of Pointillism. As well as most days we are practicing fine motor skills of holding crayons and coloring during free draw time.

With regard to robotics, we have exciting news! Newton School is launching its VERY FIRST ROBOTICS CLUB this month! Students in 3rd and 4th grade are invited to stay after school to build robots and learn to program them. After they have mastered basic programming, students will be coding their robots to accomplish tasks and solve challenges during club meetings. Problem solving, logical thinking skills, perseverance, and teamwork will be emphasized.

Additionally, Newton School will have two teams who will participate at two levels of a world-wide robotics competition called First Lego League and First Lego League Junior. We are also very excited to be housing the Greenfield Middle School Robotics Team as well!

In the robotics room, every corner, all of the shelves, and even our window sills are adorned with robots and Lego creations. The 4th graders are working to complete the first of many First Lego League obstacle course missions and have learned some basic code to change the display, make sounds, and move and turn their EV3 robots! Second and third graders are progressing through a series of challenges centered on the WeDo robots. They have built snails, spy robots with light sensors, and Milo, an adorable rover robot who is currently using a tilt sensor! Kindergarten and first grade have been working with Blue-Bots and have focused on physical programming to make the robots move forward, backward, left, right, and in geometric shapes such as squares and rectangles. Be on the lookout for a Kindergarten performance coming soon to our next all-school meeting. As we move forward, students at every grade level will be asked to complete challenges that are harder and require higher level programming skills.

From The Health Office

Greetings from the Health Office!!

It is that time of year where we have come to expect cold and flu symptoms. Sometimes colds and the flu are unavoidable, but there are several things we can do at school and at home to prevent illness and keep everyone feeling healthy. Here are some helpful tips to remember:

  • WASH, WASH, WASH your hands!! Handwashing is still the best defense against illness. Encourage your children to wash, especially before meals, using soap and warm water. To ensure that your child is taking enough time to get rid of germs on their hands, have them sing the ABC song while scrubbing.

  • Get plenty of rest. School age children should get 9-11 hours of sleep each night.

  • Drink lots of fluids and eat a balanced diet.

  • If you have questions about your child being too sick for school please don’t hesitate to call me.

The temperatures are getting colder outside. Children should be dressed warmly for cold weather. Please be sure to send children to school in a warm jacket, gloves and hat. As the snow begins to fall this winter please be sure your child comes to school with snow pants and boots.

As a reminder all students in Kindergarten and fourth grade, or new to the school district are required to have a physical with their primary care doctor. A copy of the physical exam and up to date immunization record should be faxed or sent to me at school.

Jennifer Paulin RN


“Self-awareness is your awareness of the world, which you experience through the five senses (sound, touch, sight, taste, and smell). Pay attention to your sensory impressions and be aware of those five ways that the world comes to you.”

-Deepak Chopra

We are excited to share the many new sensory items in the School Adjustment Counselor’s office with Newton students! We had two projects funded through Donors Choose, focusing on the sensory needs of our children. Some of the items include fidgets, squeeze balls, therapy putty, overhead light filters, and sand art. We also have a fish tank that changes color and liquid floor tiles where the colors move with every step. These items were created to help students who have difficulty regulating their emotions due to sensory overload and those who struggle with focus and attention issues. These touch and movement tools help students quiet and calm their bodies. We look forward to utilizing these new items to assist kids and have them reach their full academic potential in the classroom.

Katie Irizarry, LICSW and Nancy Garlock, LICSW

PTO News

Thank you to all families who participated in the PTO Fall Fundraiser. We had one of our best years yet for fundraiser participation! Goods should be delivered before Thanksgiving. We will share the exact date soon via our Facebook page.

November brings the PTO Scholastic Book Fair to Newton School. We need volunteers to help keep the store open throughout the week. Watch for a request for sign ups via Facebook and coming home in backpacks.

If you have not liked our Facebook page (@Newtonschoolfriends), please make sure you. We post every Monday morning with updates for the week as well as extra reminders and posts of deadlines and special events.

Upcoming Dates

November PTO Meeting- November 14, 4pm

Book Fair- November 18-22

Newton PTO Supports

Last month the PTO funded the 2nd and 4th trip to UMass Multibands and the refreshments at Pajama Night.

Upcoming Events

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