Weekly Newsletter

March 10, 2022

News from Principal Emma Liebowitz

Last week, Superintendent Stanton and Director of Curriculum and Instruction Sarah Jetzon surprised Kindergarten teacher Sarah Forbes in her classroom and awarded her with the district's 2022 Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Award!

CONGRATULATIONS, Miss Sarah for being an outstanding educator in our school community!

Kindergarten class picture with Teachers, Superintendent and Director of Curriculum


Monday - Friday (March 14-18) - Spirit Week (see below)

Wednesday, March 16 - 1:50 Release

Thursday, March 24 - 12:30 Release for Caregiver/Teacher Conferences

Friday, March 25 - 12:30 Release for Caregiver/Teacher Conferences

Wednesday, March 30 - 1:50 Release

Link to Sanderson Academy calendar.

Mask Update

Beginning on Monday, March 14, mask wearing in our school buildings will be optional for all staff and students. Additionally, as of Monday, March 14, we will no longer require masks on school buses, per the updated guidance from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

More information can be found at: https://www.mtrsd.org/COVID-19-Information

Spirit Week!

Next week, students and staff are invited to show some school spirit!

Monday: Sports Day

Tuesday: Crazy Hair and/or Hat Day

Wednesday: Beach Day

Thursday: Green Day

Friday: Pajama Day

Health Office News from Nurse Loranna

Greetings from the health office!

Be sure to check out the S’update this week for any health related updates. School committee will be voting on the proposal to lift the mask mandate.

Please know that at school we will be supporting those who choose to remain masked, and will not tolerate any negative comments regarding this personal choice. We will continue to have at school a wide variety of masks for students and staff, including KN95 masks for both staff and students. Please discuss with your child your personal preference as a family, and don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.

Please note that when in the health office, students will need to be masked (as well as myself) this is a requirement from the state for any health care setting and the school health office falls under that. I will have masks at my entrance for students to put on if needed.

It is also important to note that if cases rise in the future, we may need to go back to mask wearing to keep our school and community safe. We have learned the importance of layering our mitigation tools such as masking, staying home when sick, covid testing programs, handwashing, as well as opening windows and spending time in our beautiful outdoors. We have been through so much these past two years as a community and school; I am very (very) proud of our students here at Sanderson and how well they have adapted to these changes, all while remaining supportive to our wonderful community, to their friends/classmates and teachers/staff, and their eagerness to learn, play and grow.

These kiddos are simply amazing, and I am proud to serve them as their dedicated school nurse. <3 Nurse Loranna

Preschool News from Ms. Freeman

This week and last, we have been having fun during motor group using the parachute. Preschoolers have been doing well working together and listening to learn new activities. We learned how to shake the parachute to make waves. We practiced making small waves and large waves. These skills were necessary when we pretended to make popcorn. We needed the waves to help “pop” pom-pom balls all around and off the parachute. It was fun to watch the pom-poms ride the waves, roll, bounce, or get launched high into the air! Another fun activity was to lift the parachute together, as high as we could, then step underneath it, sitting on the edge to create a giant balloon. We carefully watched as our balloon deflated and started to look more like a donut. We can’t wait to use the parachute again!

Preschool fun with a parachute
Preschool fun with a parachute

Preschool News from Ms. Melanie

We ended our popular bird unit with a wonderful bird-watching walk with our third-grade buddies. It was a lovely late winter day and our walk took us around the fire pond and vernal pool, through the soccer field, and ended in our outdoor classroom. Someone must have told the birds to be ready, because they were out in force and very vocal! We were greeted first by a cardinal, who sang incessantly from the top of a birch tree, never stopping during our entire walk! We saw red-winged blackbirds, blue jays, chickadees, a woodpecker, and even some robins hopping about on the edge of the soccer field. We crossed over the bridge into the woods and listened to more bird calls sounding from the tops of the evergreens. There is one particular blue jay who sometimes comes to visit us in our outdoor classroom. He watches us from the trees while we greet each other at morning meeting, often adding his own voice to our “good morning “ song. He joined us again on this special bird-watching day and we were able to introduce him to our buddies–a rare treat!

Kindergarten News from Ms. Sarah

In science, we have started a new unit about the Properties of Matter. This week, we focused on solids and liquids. We learned that solids can be very different, such as a rock and a feather, but they both keep their shape no matter what container they are in. We also sorted solids by different characteristics, such as color, weight, and texture. We learned that liquids change their shape to fit their container and can be very different as well, such as water, vegetable oil, and molasses. To show how different they are, we did a liquid mixing experiment that ended up with layers of each liquid inside the bottle.

First Grade News from Mrs. Wyckoff

During the month of March, our number corner activities focus on telling time both to the hour and half hour. Each day we keep track of how much time has passed since the start of the month. This month we are collecting pennies, nickels and dimes and learning the name of the coin, how much it is worth and how to identify it when mixed in with other coins. In science we are focusing on the moon and why the moon has craters. After reading a nonfiction text we completed an investigation. A pair of students each got a container of play-doh and mixed materials to see if they could create their own moon model full of craters, both large and small. To see what everyone remembered from their learning about the moon we played a game called Race to the moon. Children were divided into two teams -the purple rockets and the red rockets. Each team was asked a question about their moon learning. If they answered correctly they get to fill in a square. The first team to fill in all their squares wins!

Second Grade News from Ms. Robertson

This week we completed our Second Steps unit on empathy. Our lessons on empathy focused on the following concepts:

  • Facial expressions, body language, and situational clues help us to notice and understand what people are feeling.

  • People can have different feelings about the same situation.

  • Empathy is understanding what someone else is feeling.

  • Having empathy helps us to notice when others have different preferences than we do.

  • Respecting different preferences helps us to get along better with others.

  • When we have empathy for others, we can show compassion to them by saying something kind or doing something to help.

  • When we do something to others by accident, we can think about how the other person feels and then have empathy and show compassion to them by making an apology and offering to help.

During our theme time, we have also started a science unit on landforms and bodies of water. Our introductory lessons find us learning the differences between landforms, such as mountains and hills and islands and peninsulas, and bodies of water, such as oceans and lakes, by reading aloud books such as Earth’s Landforms and Bodies of Water by Natalie Hyde, by watching video clips, and doing partner activities, such as matching definitions of landforms and bodies of water to visual clues.

Third Grade News from Ms. Carole

This week we began a new unit in math that involves time and measurement. We started off with making a twenty-four hour chart and sorting out the concepts of A.M. and P.M. (If you don’t know what A.M. and P.M. stand for, check in with your third grader.) Next we’ll be solidifying everyone’s ability to read the hands on an analog clock. In this digital age, often the only analog clock kids regularly see is the one in the classroom. If you have one at home, please refer to it once in a while with your third grader. Once those skills are mastered, we will be figuring out elapsed time word problems using timelines.

Fourth Grade News from Ms. Laogy

As you know, we are finishing our whole-group book Glory Be this week. Students donned their pajamas on Wednesday to celebrate our read-in day. We will complete a final piece of writing about this book before beginning our next. For our next whole-group book we will be reading The City of Ember, a science fiction novel. In math, we have moved into the fourth unit. In this unit, your child will ❚ Compare multi-digit numbers and identify the value of the digits in such numbers ❚ Use the standard algorithms for addition and subtraction ❚ Measure length, distance, liquid volume, time, mass, and weight ❚ Convert measurements from one unit to another within the same system (e.g., centimeters to meters but not centimeters to inches).

Fifth Grade News from Ms. Johnson

Fifth grade has been creating models in math to go along with multiplication of fractions. They have been looking for patterns and rules when fractions are multiplied to fractions, when fractions are multiplied with whole numbers, and when fractions are multiplied with mixed numbers. They are creating visual representations such as arrays and pictures to show what is happening in these types of math situations.

In science, we have been studying the moon. We have been watching videos and doing some reading. Students are keeping moon journals and they completed models that show the moon passing through the eight phases.

News from Ms. Prew

Math really is all around us! Are you and your families beginning to think about your gardens? Check out this picture of a community garden from the awesome Math at Home website. What do you notice? What do you wonder? What math questions can you ask about the plants in the garden? Looking for a challenge? Design your own garden! How many rows and columns will your garden have? How many plants will you grow in all? Enjoy! :) aprew@mtrsd.org


It's time to GEAR-UP and get your MTRS gear!

Caregivers, sports-fans, and future MTRS families -- it's time to get your MTRS gear!

Want to show off your blue & gold pride at the next MTRS sporting event? Have a child who will go to MTRS next year and want to stock up on some gear? Now is your time! The MTRS pop-up gear shop is open March 14, so get your gear here: https://eastbaystore.com/OFTSD595

Questions? Please contact MTRS Athetic Director Greg Vouros at gvouros@mtrsd.org.

MTRS Gear Drive Flyer

Elementary Wrestling Opportunity

wrestling flyer

Girls on the Run

Girls on the Run flyer

After School Opportunity

Red Gate After School Program Flyer