Greenlodge Weekly Update 4/7/22


Dear Greenlodge Families:

I hope you have all had a great week so far. It feels like we are getting a taste of Spring which has been amazing!

It has been a very busy week here at Greenlodge as we started it off with our first round of MCAS. Our third grade students took the test on Monday, followed by our fourth graders on Tuesday. I am so incredibly proud of the effort our third and fourth grade students put into the test on Monday and Tuesday. Although we do our best to prepare our students and decrease the stress and anxiety around the notion of the MCAS test, students tend to be a little apprehensive about what to expect. Despite the uneasiness, our third and fourth graders tried their best and persevered through it! In addition to the effort put forth by our students taking the test, I want to commend the rest of our students for being so respectful when traveling through the hallways near our 3rd and 4th grade classrooms. Students were extra quiet in the hallway, and for that, we are all very appreciative.

Our 5th, 4th and 3rd grade students will work on finishing our the ELA portion of MCAS prior to the April break.

I hope you all have a great rest of the week and enjoy the weekend.



Important Dates

  • April 15th - Good Friday / No School
  • April 18th - 22nd - April Break / No School
  • April 29th - Greenlodge Trivia Night- Trivia Night is officially SOLD OUT!!!

MCAS Schedule

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Water Bubblers are Back!

Over the past 2 years, bottled water has been getting delivered to school to ensure all students stay hydrated during the day. We are happy to report that our regular installed water fountains (aka "bubblers") are up and running again! This means that we will no longer have a supply of disposable water bottles to hand out to students. Please be sure to send your child in with a refillable water bottle every day.


Our Kindness Tree is changing....

April is Autism Acceptance Month and to celebrate any Greenlodge community members with Autism, we will be turning our Kindness tree into our "Uniqueness Tree" for the month of April. Next week, our students will each have an opportunity to share one thing that is unique about them and we will highlight our own individual uniqueness in our front lobby.

Autism Acceptance Spirit Week:

Magnificent Mind Monday: Autism is a neurological variation, which means the brains of autistic people work differently than the brains of allistic (non-autistic) people--and that’s amazing! Celebrate how amazing it is that all our minds work in different, wonderful ways by wearing a fun hat and/or wild hair!

Neurodiversity Tuesday:To celebrate the beauty in the diverse spectrum of the human mind, wear rainbow and/or tie-dyed clothes to school!

What's your passion Wednesday: One characteristic of autism is to show incredibly focused passion for topics of interest. What are you passionate about? Dress to show something you love! ♡

Greenlodge Autism Acceptance Day/Sensory Friendly- Love and acceptance go a long way. Wear red to show your support and acceptance of autistic individuals! Autistic people often have a variety of sensory sensitivities. You may also dress up today in your most comfy clothes (including school-appropriate pjs), use as much natural light in your classroom instead of fluorescents as possible, and/or wear sunglasses.

Smile Project: On Friday of last week, Artist, Bren Bataclan came back to Greenlodge to work with our 5th grade students to finish out their "Smile Project". The students were asked to write a Artist statement identifying what they hope to see when others look at their piece of artwork. Some of the statements can be viewed below. It was a great projects for our students to learn the impact a smile can have on others.

Read Alouds:
My Magical Words by Becky Cummings was a read aloud in a first grade classroom. The students then completed a project "Lets Taco-bout Kind Words".

Second graders listened to the story, The Big Umbrella and were able to engage in a STEM activity to make their own umbrella from legos and other building manipulatives. The students also were then able to work on a writing activity where under a picture of their umbrella they wrote how they can include others under it.

Kudos to...

Four second grade students who took time during their recess block today to fix up a tree that was planted last year in honor of a staff member, Pam Vicente, who passed away in 2020.
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Mad Science Enrichment

Our Mad Science Enrichment was a HUGE success yesterday! All of our students greatly enjoyed this interactive assembly!

Notes from the Nurse

When in doubt, TEST!

  • The BA.2 subvariant is now predominant in New England.

  • This variant is possibly more infectious, and there is a small uptick in cases locally.

  • With April vacation coming up and many different germs circulating these days, please test your student if they have any Covid-19 symptoms.

  • There is overlap between common cold and Covid-19 symptoms–do not assume it’s “just a cold”, the only way to know is to test.

  • See below for more Covid-19 info and how to sign up for weekly rapid test kits.

OTC Medication: As we try to keep students with mild symptoms or discomfort in school, there are times a parent or the nurse may recommend Tylenol or Motrin, for which we should have your permission in the SNAP health portal. Click here for the tutorial titled: "How Do I Give Permission for OTC Medications?"

Spring environmental allergies: The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology recommends starting most medications for seasonal allergies before tree pollen is in the air and allergy symptoms develop, usually March in Massachusetts. This can prevent severe symptoms. Now is a good time to check your stock of medication and check in with the pediatrician as needed.

Submit 4th Grade Physical Exams: Please send in updated physical forms from the pediatrician whenever your student has an annual visit. We are required by state regulation to ensure 4th grade students receive a physical exam.

Helmet Safety: It is Greenlodge policy that students wear helmets when biking, riding a scooter, skateboarding, and rollerblading onto campus. It’s a simple step that can prevent serious head injury. It’s also a law in Massachusetts that children 16 and under wear a helmet when biking. Click here for a CDC fact sheet on getting the proper fit when wearing a helmet.

Covid-19 Info:

  • Free Rapid Tests: You can opt in to the At-Home COVID Testing Program here

  • If your student tests positive, fill out the DPS form here

  • Children with COVID-19 SYMPTOMS should be tested prior to return, even if vaccinated. An at-home rapid is ok.

  • Please consider Covid-19 vaccination. It can reduce spread in school and students are exempt from quarantine two weeks after the 2nd dose.

  • Isolation and quarantine must be a full five days after the date of the positive test, the date symptoms started, or the last date of exposure.

  • All students returning from quarantine/isolation must wear a mask at all times unless eating or drinking for five days after return.

  • Fully vaccinated close contacts are not required to test/quarantine. However, if Covid-19 is in your home, please test periodically before sending students in.

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Free or Discounted Internet for Low Income Homes

Comcast/Xfinity: 800-746-4726

Verizon: 800-837-4966

Translation Services Available

Want help from Dedham’s Technology Team?

Email in any language

Translation Options

Dedham Public Schools Technology Team Voicemail: 781-310-1026

More Information for Affordable Connectivity Program

The Child Mind Institute

The Child Mind Institute is an evidence-based organization that has some excellent tools and strategies to support youth behavioral and social-emotional health.

Parent Video Resources: This resource from the Child Mind Institute includes several brief videos on how parents/caregivers can spark important conversations to support healthy coping skill sets with children and adolescents in elementary, middle, and high school.

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On Sunday, May 1st, the Becca Schmill Foundation will present “Social Media and Our Youth: A Mental Health Forum,” at 2:00 pm EDT (flyer attached). Registration is free (click here) and the event is open to the public. The two-panel forum, which is being held virtually in order to encourage maximum attendance, will feature nationally recognized and esteemed researchers, child/adolescent mental health professionals, teachers, and advocacy group members. The panelists will provide much-needed information on the current state of social media, how teens and children use it, and the increasing evidence that certain social media practices are dangerous to the physical and mental health of teens and younger children.

This mental health forum follows on the heels of President Biden’s State of the Union statement, in which he acknowledged the harms of social media. Furthermore, in the pre-speech Fact Sheet, the White House states “..[T]here is mounting evidence that social media is harmful to many kids’ and teens’ mental health, well-being, and development. As the Surgeon-General has said, ‘…[T]hese tools can pit us against each other, reinforce negative behaviors like bullying and exclusion, and undermine the safe and supportive environments young people need and deserve.’ “

To learn more about the event and to register for free click here. To learn more about the Becca Schmill Foundation, please visit

Any potential runners out there? Come join the Dedham Youth Running and Fitness Group!

Dedham Youth Running and Fitness (DYRF) is a youth program designed to introduce and promote general fitness to kids. The weekly class will include various workouts with a fun spin and is suitable for all fitness levels. The DYRF will incorporate fun activities that will keep the kids engaged while getting in a good workout.

The program is to teach the kids the importance and benefits of a healthy lifestyle through sustainable activities. Each class will include a warm up, a mile run, some strength exercises, and a cool down.

Whether you are looking for your child to become a runner, to get them more fit for other sports, or just looking to get them off the couch – this program will benefit all. The DYRF goal is to get the kids stronger and faster all while teaching the benefits of being healthy.

Here is the registration link:

The program will start on April 29th and will run every Friday evening from 5-6pm till May 27th. This program is for anyone in grades 1 – 5.

If you have any questions please reach out to Coach Jeff Caruso at:

Registration fee is $50 for the first child and any siblings are an additional $25. If you are planning to register more than one child please reach out to Debbie Anderson: to manually register you with the discount.

TREK Into Summer

What? TREK is the transition program for rising grade 6 students attending Dedham Middle School. Students will get to know the school, some of their future teachers, and work on their summer reading and math!

When? TREK will tentatively be held on the following dates from 8am-12:30pm: June 22, 23, 24, 27, 28, 29, 30, July 1, 5, 6, 7, and 8. We are partnering with Dedham Community House (DCH) for any students who need care after TREK ends each day.

Cost? The fee for TREK is $375 and $50 for students on free/reduced lunch.

How to register? Visit our website ( and click on "How to register?" to register online. To fill out a paper registration: print out the brochure, fill it out, and return it and a check to: TREK Program, c/o DMS, 70 Whiting Ave, Dedham, MA 02026 (NOTE: You do NOT need to register online and on paper. Also, families eligible for free/reduced lunch MUST use paper registration)

Contact Chris Nadeau ( or Andy Podolski ( if you have any questions.

Community Events and Flyers

Click on the GREEN bar above to take a look at the community events and flyers


  • If your child is sick or will be out of school for any reason, please call the attendance line. 781-310-4799 to report the absence.
  • If your child is required to stay home due to illness or quarantine , they are no longer able to attend school remotely.
  • The school will excuse up to 7 absences in a six month period. Students who are chronically absent will receive notification from the school.
  • Please see the student handbook for full details regarding attendance.

Mental Health Resources

There have been a few questions over the last couple of weeks regarding support for students who are struggling with their mental health. Below you will find a few resources for families and students to access.

  • Riverside Emergency Services: 800-529-5077
  • HandHoldMA -- this is an excellent webpage with a lot of resources.

School Meals Program

All school meals will continue to be FREE for Dedham students through June 30, 2022. We still encourage families eligible for Free/Reduced lunch to complete the registration process, as it ensures you can benefit from the other program offerings including access to reduced fees in other areas. Also, please note that due to supply chain issues, our posted lunch menus may be subject to last minute changes.

Please see the Breakfast Flyer from our Food Service department.

Check-out the Greenlodge Homepage!

The Greenlodge Homepage is updated regularly. Go here to view:
  • Links to current and past newsletters and headlines
  • Food service information
  • Bus application
  • Families Digital Support Page
  • Counseling resources
  • Coronavirus Updates

Other District Information...

Dedham Public Schools has translated resource pages:

Please click here for translated curriculum and resources.

Haga clic aquí para ver el currículo y los recursos traducidos.

Clique aqui para obter o currículo e os recursos traduzidos.

Пожалуйста, нажмите здесь для перевода учебной программы и ресурсов.

Ju lutemi klikoni këtu për kurrikulën dhe burimet e përkthyera.

الرجاء الضغط هنا للحصول على المناهج والمواد المترجمة.

There is also a Parent Support Group for Spanish speaking families.

Learn more here:Parent Support Group Flyer (Spanish)

Video Overview of Parent Support Group (Spanish)

Substance Abuse Support Group for Children: Please see this flyer for information about a virtual group to support children dealing with the impacts of a loved ones substance abuse.