Estabrook Buzz

News and Notes from Estabrook School | October 6, 2016

Principal's Message

Dear Estabrook Families,

Reading, writing and math are usually what come to mind when we rattle off the core work of an elementary school. Increasingly, however, schools are focusing attention on the social and emotional health of their students as well. One of Estabrook's growth goals this year is to continue strengthening our students social and emotional well-being.

In classrooms, teachers are utilizing Class Meeting time each week to teach pro-social skills and explore issues that arise in class, seizing the opportunity to problem solve as a community. Throughout our building you will see teachers highlighting and positive behaviors and offering reminders or redirections when an unexpected behavior occurs.

This fall, Estabrook staff members are taking part in various professional development opportunities that focus on supporting students' mental health. Courses include the popular Responsive Classroom and Social Thinking programs, as well as a course focusing on the impact of trauma on learning.

Beyond what we're doing in school and the professional learning our faculty and staff are undertaking on the topic, we hope to bring information to our families as well. In addition to regular news and updates, this edition of Estabrook Buzz features several activities and events this month that serve to start or continue the conversation around supporting our students' whole-self development. I encourage you to consider attending one or more of these events, all great opportunities to learn more about the topic or engage in discussion around the topic with other Estabrook families.


Jeff LaBroad


Being Estabees

Mrs. O'Hare Gibson reviews what it means to be an Estabee at Estabrook School at our first All School Assembly last week (below). More on Estabrook Estabees in the October 20th Estabrook BUZZ.
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Spirit Days at Estabrook

Throughout the year our students and staff share their spirit and celebrate with special Spirit Days. Last month we celebrated the New England Patriots' opener, and today students are decked out in the Red Sox gear. Next Thursday, October 13, we will invite students to mark the opening of the Boston Bruin's season by wearing Bruins gear or black and yellow clothes and accessories. Other Spirit Days will be announced throughout the year.


On Tuesday, October 18, join Lexington community members for a screening of Beyond Measure, followed by a visit with the author. See details below.
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Walking Wednesdays Return October 19

One Wednesday each month, Estabrook celebrates all the ways we can get to school, as part of Lexington's Safe Routes to School initiative. Our first Walking Wednesday of the year is Wednesday, October 19. Upon arriving to school, students will get the chance to record how they came to school. We will track arrival routes on Walking Wednesdays all year. What's more, the classroom with the highest participation rate will receive the prestigious Golden Sneaker Award!

Here is the complete list of Walking Wednesdays for 2016-2107:

October 19

November 9

December 14

January 11

February 8

March 8

April 12

May 10

June 14

Principal Coffee to Explore At-Home Reading

Are you excited, concerned, or at a loss for how to support at-home reading? Please join us for our Principal Coffee on Wednesday, October 19 at 8:45 a.m. as we explore this topic. Our librarian and literacy specialists will join Mr. LaBroad, and will share what your role supporting your child's reading at home can look like and how you can help select appropriate reading materials. They will also be on hand to answer your questions.

Exploring the Impact of Social Media

The explosion in preteens' use of social media represents one of the most challenging parenting tasks today. Social media not only features its own interactions, on the Internet, but also consistently impacts social interactions in person. Join Lexington parents on Wednesday, October 19 at 6:30 at Diamond Middle School for an important discussion on the impact of social media on children. Dr. Elizabeth Englander from MARC (Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center) will present on the use of social media and how it impacts children on a daily basis. Problems such as cyberbullying and cyber-fighting are consistently identified by pre-teens and teens as one of their greatest areas of educational need. You don't need to become a computer expert to help your children learn the social pitfalls on digital communication; this event will focus on practical mistakes, cyberbullying, and the spill-over of bullying in school.

Playful Parenting Comes to Estabrook

Join the Estabrook PTO on Thursday, October 27 at 7:00 p.m. for an evening of discussion with Lawrence J. Cohen, PhD, author of Playful Parenting! This parent lecture will focus on connecting with children through play and emotional understanding. These strategies will help parents in the effort to lower stress and anxiety, reduce power struggles and family challenges, and build confidence. The evening will feature Q & A, and Dr. Cohen will have books available for sale and signing. This talk is open to all Lexington parents, and Dr. Cohen’s work is relevant to parents of children of all ages. The event is free, however, attendees are asked to register to ensure a space.

If you would like to send questions ahead of time for Dr. Cohen to consider, including seeking practical tips for special situations or behavior, please send the question to All questions will be presented anonymously.

Dr. Cohen is a Boston-based psychologist who specializes in parenting, play therapy and child development. He is the author of Playful Parenting and The Opposite of Worry, and the co-author of The Art of Roughhousing, Mom They’re Teasing Me, and Best Friends, Worst Enemies.

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Principal Roundtable

SAVE THE DATE! Estabrook parents are invited to join school administrators and other Estabrook families for a roundtable discussion about the social and emotional well-being of our students at our fall Principal Roundtable, Sunday, November 6 at 2 p.m. here at Estabrook. Plan to join us for this important conversation, including the challenges facing our students and what we can do to support them. More details to come!

Keep Up with Estabrook!

There are so many ways to keep up with what is going on at Estabrook. Our website now features a live feed of postings from and about Estabrook School, with daily news, reminders and photographs. You can search for us on Twitter using #estabrookschool. Many of our teachers also Tweet updates or post to their classroom websites.



Click here for the complete Estabrook School Calendar

Click here for the complete 2016-2017 Academic Calendar

COLUMBUS DAY | Monday, October 10

Schools and School Offices are CLOSED

YOM KIPPUR | Wednesday, October 12

Schools and School Offices are CLOSED

BRUINS SPIRIT DAY | Thursday, October 13

Come in your Bruins gear or black and yellow clothes to celebrate the home team's opening day.

BEYOND MEASURE SCREENING & AUTHOR VISIT | Tuesday, October 18, 7-9:30 pm

Join the Lexington community as we continue to explore this important topic.

WALKING WEDNESDAY | Wednesday, October 19

Join Estabrook families on our Safe Routes to School Day! Walk, bike, take the bus or carpool to get to school today.

PRINCIPAL COFFEE | Wednesday, October 19, 8:45-9:30 a.m.

Join our librarian, literacy specialists and principal for a conversation around independent reading at home.

IMPACT OF SOCIAL MEDIA ON CHILDREN | Wednesday, October 19, 6:30 p.m., Diamond Middle School

Join parents from across Lexington to learn more about this important and timely topic.

SCHOOL COUNCIL | Monday, October 24, 3:45-5:00 p.m.

METCO FAMILY FRIENDS DAY | Thursday, October 27

PARENT CONFERENCES | Wednesday & Thursday, October 26 & 27

Early dismissal at 12:15 p.m. each day.

PLAYFUL PARENTING | Thursday, October 27, 7pm, Estabrook School

Dr. Larry Cohen, author of Playful Parenting will be our guest as we explore the important role of play and emotional understanding in parenting.

PRINCIPAL ROUNDTABLE | Sunday, November 6, 2 p.m.

Estabrook BUZZ

Estabrook Buzz is the parent and family newsletter of Estabrook School, published regularly and distributed to families via email and shared at