Athol-Royalston Elementary News

Teaching Excellence & Bringing Our Schools Together in 2016

November 2015

What does the research say about Eureka Math?

Our district is now in our second year of implementing the Eureka program throughout our elementary programs and, while it is a demanding program, we are seeing fantastic growth in our students math.

According to the independent non-profit specifically established to vet K-12 curricula, Eureka Math continues to be the only curriculum found to be aligned, rigorous, and usable in all grades, K-8. released its initial K-8 reviews last March, but after pushback from the textbook establishment, modified its criteria for determining alignment to Common Core standards. Many low-scoring textbooks were reviewed again, and in the organization's October update, some gained ground, others didn't, and all remained far behind Eureka Math. Read more about the review here:

November is Family Literacy Month

This year marks the Commonwealth's 19th annual Family Literacy Month in recognition of the pivotal role that parents and family members play in the educational success of their children. In celebration of Family Literacy Month, communities across the state will host activities throughout November in support of literacy, lifelong learning, and family-well-being.

Scheduled Literacy Events in our Community:

  • Community Reads Day, Nov. 3rd- beginning at 9:00 am- Volunteers, Parents, and National Honor Society members will join us for a special reading and activity in all of our classes.
  • The Big Read- Community Literacy Event- Saturday, Nov. 14th, 10 am to noon at the ELKs Lodge, 93 New Athol Rd, Orange with a free performance of the Nutcracker.

  • Childrens' Book Festival, Mount Wachusett Community College, November 14, 10:00-3:00 pm, music, authors, refreshments, and more! Great alternative if you can't make the Big Read in the morning.

Plan to Attend the Big Read! Saturday, November 14th

Saturday, November 14th, 10 am to noon, Elks Club, 93 New Athol Rd.

  • Free gently used books for all ages baby to adult
  • Activities for the kids
  • Raffle prizes
  • Resources and information for families

For more information please call Jennifer: 978-249-8467

Time to Schedule Your Parent/Teacher Conferences!

We are looking forward to seeing ALL of our families at our upcoming conferences which are scheduled for Monday, November 9th from 3:30 to 5:00 pm and Tuesday, November 10th from 6:00-7:30 pm. Conferences are held by appointment and are designed to be very informative and focused conversations about your child's progress. We encourage parents to come prepared in advance with questions so that our teachers can not only share work samples, assessment information, and report on your child's progress but also answer any of your questions.

Thank your for sending in your Boxtops for Education!

Our school PTOs and PTGs collect Boxtops for Education to help support a number of school enrichment activites including Scholastics News subscriptions and more. If everyone within our school community collected and sent them in we could easily raise thousands of dollars!

News from Riverbend & Sanders Street

Community Reading Day

Amanda Leighton visited Mrs. Tandy's third grade at Riverbend School for Community Reader Day. She read It's Disgusting and We Ate It by James Solheim. The book looks at weird foods eaten all over the world.Mrs. Leighton brought some limburger cheese for the children to try. A few brave souls tried to get past the smell and give it a try.Community Reader Day is coordinated and sponsored by the Athol Public
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Pumpkin Winners!

These Riverbend students are showing off pumpkins they won in a recent PTO sponsored pumpkin raffle. Pumpkins were donated by teachers and staff. Many happy smiles were seen with the pumpkins!
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News from Pleasant Street School

If you haven't done so already please check out our most recent newsletter for activities and happenings at Pleasant Street School.

Pleasant Street Celebrates Community Reading Day!

A big thank you is due to the Athol Public Library and to their wonderful volunteer readers who visited Pleasant Street on November 3rd for Community Reading Day!

Volunteer readers included: Mary Williams, David Small, Carol Forand, Representative Susannah Whipps Lee, Ken Vaidulas, Megan Shaughnessy, Shaun Suhoski, Dianna Dugas, Rebecca Tower-Hughes, Sarah Gambrell, Christine Mailloux, and John Duguay.

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October 23, 2015~Mrs. Schwab, Elementary Guidance Counselor, taught a lesson on the Massachusetts Bullying Prevention Law to Ms. Robertson's 4th Grade class. Students learned that if a student is mean or hurtful to you, to tell the student "Stop _________________ (describe the behavior specifically, such as name calling, or pushing, teasing, etc). If the other student does not stop the behavior, students should tell the teacher who is right there, at recess, lunch, or in the classroom, or the bus driver. Students should also tell one other school staff member such as the guidance counselor, school nurse, principal, if the mean behavior does not stop, and their parents/guardians. These kinds of behaviors are then reported to the principal, who talks with the students involved, and decides if the behavior is bullying behavior, calls parents, and applies consequences. Students talked with their peers in class during Turn and Talk discussions about the skills they learned in the lesson. Bullying incidents are very rare at Pleasant Street School, as students are taught by Mrs. Schwab through the Steps to Respect curriculum, how to be kind friends, how to solve peer conflicts, and how to be active, kind bystanders if they see or hear, or experience a student who is being mean. Students also reviewed our school rules: Respect Yourself, Respect Others, Respect Property.

News from the Royalston Community School

For the latest news from the Royalston Community School, on 6th grade buddies, pictures from the Harvest dance and more, please check out their newsletter by clicking on the link below.

Bully Prevention at RCS

Mrs. Schwab taught Mr. Snell's 6th grade class about the Massachusetts Bullying Prevention Law and the Title IX Harassment Prevention Law on Thursday, October 29, 2015. Mr. Snell reminded the class that these laws remind us that as students we have to be responsible for our behavior, and that laws involve consequences for not doing what is expected.

The 6th grade class at RCS also did Turn and Talk discussions, and a role play about what to do if a student name calls you at recess. Students learned to tell the student who is being mean to stop, if they feel comfortable doing so by saying, "Stop _______________," and to specifically describe the behavior you want the student to stop doing.

The 6th grade students also learned to immediately tell the teacher who is present if a student is mean to you or someone else, as well as one other school staff member, such as your classroom teacher, the guidance counselor, the nurse, or principal, in addition to telling your parents or guardians. This is called making a "good report," or a "good tell." Bullying is very rare at Royalston Community School, because students are taught by their teachers, principal and guidance counselor to follow the R.C.S. school rules: Be Respectful, Cooperative and Safe. Mrs. Schwab teaches the Steps to Respect curriculum at R.CS. to 3rd - 6th grade classes with classroom teachers, which reinforces all of these skills.

Community Events & Postings

Do you have news to share or want to inform members of our school community about family friendly events in our area? if so, please email or forward a flyer or link.

Thank you :)

Mother Goose on the Loose Playgroup-Thursdays 10am—11:30am Valuing Our Children 217 Walnut St. Athol. For more information contact: Jen: 978-249-8467 x 22

Petersham Playgroup- Beginning on Thursday, Sept. 17th from 10-11:30 at the Petersham Center School. For more information please call Jennifer at Valuing Our Children 978-249-8467 x22

Welcome Baby Baskets- Did you or do you know someone who just had a new baby? Valuing Our Children would love to pay them a visit with a basket full of goodies. For more information please call (978) 249-8487.

The Common Thread, November Newsletter from the North Quabbin Community Coalition

Big Brothers/ Big Sisters Program is enrolling children for the 2015-2016 school year program. They serve children in the Athol/Orange area with transportation provided from Riverbend and Butterfield Schools. Please click on the link below for more information about this program and how you can be involved.

For other local events, happenings, and resources in this area... you can also check the North Quabbin Community Coalition website below:

These are not school sponsored events but are posted here as a public service for families in the greater North Quabbin community.

Upcoming Events...Mark your Calendars!

Upcoming Events and Dates!

  • November 9, 3:30-5:00 pm, elementary conferences by appointment
  • November 10, 6:00-7:30 pm, elementary conferences
  • November 11, Veterans' Day, no school

For more school specific activities please check individual school calendars.

For a copy of our school district calendar please click on the link below.

Check back soon for more news!

News from the Athol-Royalston Elementary Schools

Teaching Excellence &

Bringing Our Schools Together in 2016

The Athol Elementary Schools: Pleasant, Riverbend, and Sanders Street will come together in our new, state of the art, Athol Elementary School opening Fall 2016.