Brandt's Weekly Newsletter


Inside this Edition

  • Principal's Message
  • Kindness Awards
  • Grade Level Updates
  • The Counselor's Corner
  • Related Arts and Science Updates
  • Nurse's Nook
  • The Friday Playlist

Principal's Message

Good Day Brandt Family -

I hope you all had as much fun during The Great Kindness Challenge as I did! Thanks to our wonderful school counselor, Mrs. Hosbach, for organizing our week of activities. Thanks to our PTO for sponsoring the Prismatic Magic Kindness Laser Light Show Assembly on January 25th. And of course, don't forget about the Kindness Dance for grades 3 - 5 scheduled for tonight, Friday, January 27th from 6 - 7:30 PM. You can check out some scenes from this week below, as well as some more features in our grade level updates for the week.

Be sure to check out the featured section below on our Brandt School Spelling Bee, held last Friday. Thanks to Mrs. Della Fave and Mr. Caniglia for organizing the event, and Mr. Panfile for being our Spelling Bee Emcee. Congratulations to our winner, 5th grader Naomi Bacon! She will represent us at the Hudson County Spelling Bee, to be held in Secaucus in February.

Speaking of the PTO, be sure to subscribe to their new newsletter. The link is featured below. It will be a great place to find out information about how you can continue to support our school community by working with our dedicated parent/guardian group. Be sure to save the date of March 24th. That is when we have our Staff vs. Parents Basketball Game scheduled. More information about signing up to participate is forthcoming!

We have a lot of information to share regarding our theater department. On behalf of our friends at Hoboken Middle School, please see the flyer included below for their production of I Hate Valentine's Day. Our very own Brandt School 2nd and 3rd graders will perform for their families on January 30th. Additionally, please be sure to see the letter (and click on the corresponding pdf file) for information about our district musical - SpongeBob. There is also information about mock auditions and a Day of STEAM scheduled for February 25th.

Next week, on February 1st and 2nd, our classes will be visited by the good folks at Hoboken Smile in recognition of National Dental Health Month. They will review the importance of dental hygiene with our students.

In partnership with the Hoboken Public Library, we are also pleased to announce our Pop Up Library initiative! This will take place from February 6th - 9th, and you can find more information in the flyer below my principal's message.

After you peruse all of that new information, don't forget to check out our grade level and subject area updates as we shine a spotlight on our students learning and our teachers teaching!

For this week's Friday Playlist, we went with the three songs we chose for our Kindness Week Music Mornings. Congratulations to Ms. Kontogiannis' homeroom, Mrs. Waag's homeroom, and Mrs. Gant's homeroom for correctly identifying the songs during our morning call-in contest!

Have a great weekend and please safe!

- Mr. Bartlett

Spelling Bee

Congratulations to all of our Spelling Bee participants this year. We are very proud of all of you for doing so well. Massive shout out to our winner, Naomi Bacon of 5th grade! Shout out as well to our 1st runner up Tomer Segall and our 2nd runner up Maria Otero.

2nd Grade

213-James Fraley

215-Aarav Raghavan was the class winner; Lucy Guest participated as the runner-up

314-Eli Levinton

315-Varun Ramasubramanian

308-Libby Rashkes

3rd Grade

300- Sebastian Su was the winner; Grey Goldman participated as the runner up

302-Maria Otero

304- Santiago Loayza

310-Vayun Hari

312-Tomer Segall

4th Grade

301-Vedika Dua

303- Ryka Chugh

305- Luke Mei

306-Dhruv Taljera

5th Grade

311-Kayden Atkins

313- Naomi Bacon

307-Josephine Schlusser

309-Julianne Aponte

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Scenes from The Great Kindness Challenge

Brandt School spread the kindness in all types of ways during The Great Kindness Challenge. Thanks to our awesome school counselor, Mrs. Hosbach, for organizing and coordinating our week's worth of activities. Thanks to the Brandt School PTO for sponsoring the Prismatic Magic Laser Light Show and for donating the Friendship Bracelet kits!
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The PTO is excited to share our newly released newsletter. To stay connected and informed please SUBSCRIBE HERE:

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NJIT eSTEM Challenge Update

Our NJIT eSTEM teams were introduced to this year's challenge on January 17, 2023. The teams started brainstorming ideas about environmental issues that they want to tackle and will need to design a solution for it as well. The challenge also requires the teams to use a BBC Micro-Bit to help collect data. Our students will have to learn to program these BBC Micro-Bits to collect information that will help them design their solution. The eSTEM teams are led by Coaches Hillary Quist and Michael Caniglia-Robilio and supported by Hoboken High School student volunteers. On January 24, 2023, the teams met their NJIT mentor via Google Meet so that they can ask clarifying questions about the challenge in order to narrow down their ideas. They also had a chance to see what the BBC Micro-Bit can do to help them think of ways they can use it to collect their information.
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Middle School Theater Production

The Hoboken Middle School production of I Hate Valentine's Day is a self-love journey through the eyes of young teens in school on Valentine's Day. The show incorporates the different viewpoints and perspectives that students face in school on Valentine's Day that ultimately becomes a journey to loving yourself before loving others. The cast and crew of the Hoboken Middle School Theatre Department hopes that you will join them.

Show dates:

February 10th at 7pm

February 11th at 2pm

February 12th at 2pm

To purchase tickets visit and for questions you can email

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2nd and 3rd Grade Showcase

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District Musical Information

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Kindness Awards

These friends were caught throwing kindness like confetti this week!

Skylar DellaFave was extremely helpful reading Esperanza Rising and worked well with others on class assignments.

Brandon Su always helps clean up the classroom without being asked to do so.

Cayden Willis jumped in to help a classmate organize her desk and school supplies to ensure a successful week of learning ahead.

Tommy Anter will always help anyone in a respectful way. He makes the room happy and he find joy in everything he does!

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This week Kindergarten participated in the Great Kindness Challenge. We had a great time spreading kindness! In ELA, we learned about the letter Ee. We were able to identify the letter Ee sound in the beginning and middle of the word. The sight word for the week is "are". In math, we learned about story problems and how to solve them. In SS, we learned how our town can change.
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First Grade

Students participated in The Great Kindness Challenge this week. They dressed up and participated in some fun activities to spread some extra kindness. Kindness is cool and something that should be practiced year round!

In ELA, students learned about Folktales. Students looked for the morals/lessons within each folktale story that we read. Students also discussed cause and effect of actions within these stories. They applied cause and effect to their own life as well by thinking about situations where something happened, and thinking about the cause and why the outcome occurred. The phonics focus this week was soft c and soft g.

In math, students are continuing to explore with measurement. Students had a fun time measuring objects around the classroom. They even measured their own feet. Students are comparing two objects of different lengths and finding how much longer or shorter one object is compared to the other. For example: if one fish is 7 inches and the other is 3 inches, then the longer fish is 4 inches longer than the shorter one.

Second Grade

We had a wonderful Kindness Week in 2nd grade! On Wednesday, students got to witness a very fun assembly that included a laser light show!

In social studies, students discussed different ways they can show kindness in school as well as the community. In class we discussed how to be kind to each other and show small acts of kindness throughout the day.

In reading, students reviewed skills learned throughout second grade. We touched on the main idea, retelling and sequencing, and nonfiction text features. Students got to demonstrate their knowledge of these skills by identifying and analyzing these concepts in texts at their reading level.

In writing, students continued to work on personal narratives. Students studied mentor texts and styles of different authors so that they could incorporate their techniques and improve their writing pieces.

In math, students are at the beginning of unit 3 and taking a deeper look at place value, specifically tens and ones. Students are thinking about the patterns they see when breaking down numbers to show all the different combinations of tens and ones they can come up with for 2 digit numbers.

Third Grade

Math: Third graders continued to move through their progress of Unit 3: Travel Stories and Collections. The classes enjoyed practicing games throughout the unit such as Capture 5, Race to 100, and Go Collecting. Students are making connections between double and triple digit addition and subtraction and place value.

ELA: While students continued to follow the journey of Wilbur and Charlotte in Charlotte’s Web, we continued honing our writing skills during our Literary Analysis Tasks (LAT) where we compared two fiction texts. Students reviewed expository text while identifying the main ideas of the text.

Social Studies: This week our third graders learned about Lunar New Year and the year of the Rabbit! Students explored celebrations and traditions in countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, and Vietnam.

On Wednesday students enjoyed their assembly for Prismatic Magic! Thank you Brandt PTO!

Fourth Grade

This week, fourth graders had a blast celebrating Kindness Week while engaging in some exciting lessons and activities!

In Social Studies, fourth-grade students delved into the unit on the Revolutionary War. They discussed why colonists wanted independence from Britain and what events and conflicts led to the first battles of the war.

In ELA, students continued reading What Would She Do?, the story of 25 trailblazing women throughout history. Each student spent this week choosing their own trailblazing woman to begin researching for a new project. In a couple of weeks, students will present a poster, slideshow, or chapter in the style of our book based on the woman of their choice.

In Math, students are finishing up their unit on shapes and symmetry. This week, students explored how to find lines of symmetry and congruence in irregular polygons using various math manipulatives.

Fifth Grade

As we continue reading Esperanza Rising, we are also writing a compare and contrast essay. Students are asked to compare and contrast three different texts which mainly discuss refugees. Students have been working on crafting a strong thesis sentence as well as detailed body paragraphs. In our readers workshop, we have been continuing reading and adding to anchor charts.

In Math, we just began Unit 4: How many people and teams?, which concentrates on multi-digit multiplication. Students have been practicing through using the box method as well as the standard algorithm method.

In Social Studies, we are finishing up the Before Civil War Unit. Our 5th grade historians spent time this week investigating the different compromises and events happening during the 1800s. As we look ahead, we will be mapping the key events from this unit.

The Counselor's Corner

We had an amazing week celebrating The Great Kindness Challenge here at Brandt School. Our students were engaged in a variety of activities that promote kindness, not only in the school building, but also in the community.

Students decorated Brandt stickers with inspiring messages for The Hive coffee shop to attach to their cups each morning. Thanks to the PTO we were treated to an awesome light show promoting anti-bullying and kindness, and the students were dancing and singing along the whole show.

The PTO also donated bracelet kits for us to make friendship bracelets all week! The students loved making bracelets for one another and spreading joy around the building. Take a look at some photos below from the exciting week!

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Individualized Learning Pathway - Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth

On Mondays - Wednesdays during the Individualized Learning Pathway (ILP) period, students who have qualified to participate in the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY) programming engage in a wide array of math course offerings that address their specific strengths and interests. Johns Hopkins CTY believes in researching and advancing ways to identify and nurture academically talented learners. CTY furthers research, guides educators and families and inspires students from diverse communities and backgrounds to pursue their intellectual passions and create the world of tomorrow. This week, we would like to highlight one of the CTY courses offered to our Hoboken students this winter:

CTY - Scratch Programming for Elementary School Students

CTY students begin this course with an introduction to fundamental programming concepts alongside other young CTY students as they learn Scratch, a graphical programming language developed at MIT. Through this course they’ll learn how to create animations, computer games, and interactive projects using Scratch, and put their new skills to use developing a computer game to share with their CTY instructor and classmates. No previous programming skills are required for this course, but students should be comfortable using a computer and browser as well as managing files. We can’t wait to see what amazing projects our CTY students create with the Scratch program!

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Physical Education

As our recent fitness unit came to its conclusion, the students this week were evaluated for our second round of fitness testing consisting of the pacer, push-up test, and sit-up test. Everyone achieved the goal of completing more reps than the first round back in the beginning of the year!

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World Languages

This week in Mandarin class, the students learned how the world celebrates the Lunar New Year. They had lots of fun watching and learning the lion dance and the dragon parade!


We are happy to announce that Ella Resnick won the Provident Savings Bank “My Favorite Thing About Hoboken" poster contest! Ella did an amazing job illustrating her school, her friends, and how easily accessible Hoboken is to get around. Ms. Kolanci is so very proud of her and of all of the students who put in hard work, effort, and dedication to finish their posters.
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Students from our music classes in Grades 3-5 focused on Broadway, in particular, The Phantom of The Opera. Students got a chance to create masks in the legendary image of the Phantom. Just as the Phantom tells his story, so do we through our musical creativity. We give our regards to Broadway!


This week in theater we are gearing up and fine tuning details to our end of the marking period showcase. Second grade has a wild performance prepared and third grade is ready to boogie! This marking period the students enhanced their public speaking skills and their confidence in performing in front of others. We are so excited for our Brandt Bear Families to join us!

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This week in Kindergarten, students learned ways to protect themselves from the sun. Students also used tools and materials to design and build a structure that will reduce the warming effect of sunlight on an area. We are so excited to start our next unit on Weather next week!

This week the first graders learned about migration. As part of the lesson we watched a video on birds that migrate. Then we examined real feathers from a hawk, a seagull, a blue jay and a goldfinch, all courtesy of Mrs. Pecoraro's backyard! We discussed the purpose of flight feathers and how they affect the way a bird travels. We then drew examples of the feathers.

This week in second grade science we learned about landforms and their features. Students were encouraged to work in pairs and use play-doh to recreate a landform structure. They then had to describe their landform to their partner for them to guess.

This week in third grade science, students have been hard at work learning all about how traits can be inherited and passed down through plants. To show the variations of how these traits are inherited in sibling plants, students were presented with pictures of two parent flowers that had very different traits that led to very different appearances. Students took turns picking from different bags which contained different variations for each possible trait so each student had a different combination of possible stems, leaves, flower centers, and flower petals which they also labeled. Students used these traits to create a picture of their very own flower offspring. They then worked with a partner to write a paragraph comparing and contrasting the traits of their flower siblings and some presented their findings to the class.

This week in fourth grade science we explored our 5 senses! Station 1 was a game of “heads up: taste edition,” station 2 was a color sight test, station 3 had “feely bags” for touch testing, station 4 was a test to identify scents in the “smelly bags” and lastly station 5 students had to identify four sounds. The students did an amazing job with these stations, using a lot of descriptive words in their group discussions.

This week in 5th grade science students completed their 3rd unit of the year and began to prepare for their end of unit test. Students were working through various practice activities, as well as watched some educational clips in order to visualize real word examples to prepare themselves to ace this test!

Nurse's Nook

Good Day Brandt Family -

Nurse Karoline O'Keeffe recently resigned her position with our school district. We wish her nothing but the best in her new professional endeavor.

Please know that Dr. Cecilia D'Elia (our Director of Special Services) and I have been vetting prospective candidates for our school nurse position, and I am confident we will have a new, permanent nurse on staff soon.

In the meantime, our school's nursing and health needs will be covered and shared by Nurse Renee Banks, Nurse Wendy Lopez, and Nurse Maddie Carroll.

In order to keep needs and communication streamlined, if you have any health concerns or questions, you should send them to Nurse Banks at

I remain at your service should you have any questions.

- Mr. Bartlett

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Mr. Bartlett's Friday Playlist

American Authors - Best Day Of My Life (Audio)
Never Gonna Give You Up (2022 Remaster)
Imagine Dragons - On Top of the World