Lower School Newsletter for February 10, 2019

It is hard to believe that there are only three weeks of classes until March break! These weeks are packed with numerous special events, from skating at NYA’s Travis Roy Ice Arena and celebrating friendship in honor of Valentine’s Day to spirit week festivities and the Lower School Arts Celebration. At this time of year, we take time to enjoy final adventures in the snow and begin to dream of the longer days of sun and blooming flowers that springtime will bring. This is also a time of tremendous learning in the classroom, as students build on prior learning and stretch themselves to take on new challenges. Families can nurture this learning by reading every day with their child, making school a priority in their schedules, providing encouragement especially when taking on a challenge, and supporting the teachers in all that they do. Thank you for your help!

Marissa Markonish
Head of Lower and Middle Schools


NYA LS Arts Celebration 2018The Lower School Arts Celebration will take place on Wednesday, February 27 in the NYA gym (snow date = February 28). This year’s theme is Africa! Doors will open at 2:10 p.m. for parents and families to enjoy the art show. The concert begins at 2:30 p.m. All Primary and Elementary students will take part in a musical performance. Dress for the performance is bright, colorful attire. Following the concert, families are invited to stay for a brief reception that will conclude at 3:15 p.m. We ask that parents sign out their children before departing from the gym. The usual sign-out sheets will be on a table by the gym door. Please sign-up with Leslie if your child will be attending After Care following the concert. We look forward to seeing you there!


There will be an orange and black Dress Down Day on Wednesday, February 13 in support of the varsity basketball teams who are competing in the playoffs.  The boys team has a home game on Wednesday vs. Dirigo at 6:00 p.m.  Show your Panther Pride!


On Tuesday, February 12, grades two through four will attend a performance by Queen Nur, an African American storyteller, entitled Sweet Potato Pie and Such. The students will listen to tales, sing songs, and explore rhymes that focus on African American heritage. This presentation ties in perfectly with the Lower School Arts Celebration on February 27, as this year’s theme is Africa! In addition, Mrs. Gagne’s class is currently involved in a study of Malawi, a southeast African country. They have been exploring the cultural traditions, food, clothing, language, and economy of this country. The students are initiating a community service project to provide needed supplies to a Malawian village school.


We will have a Dress Down Day this Thursday, February 14 to benefit Tri for a Cure. This coming July marks the 12th Annual Maine Cancer Foundation (MCF) Tri for a Cure. The MCF is committed to reducing cancer incidence and mortality rates in Maine and the Tri for a Cure is one of their most successful fundraising efforts. For each of the past eleven years, one thousand women have gathered in South Portland to swim, bike, and run in support of the MCF. The Tri for a Cure has raised more than $14 million for the MCF and 100% of funds raised are reinvested into Maine communities for cancer prevention, early detection, and access to care. We are delighted to raise funds for this cause and provide a show of support for Ashley Randlett and Eliot Grady who will participate in the Tri this summer. In addition to donations, we are asking everyone in the community to wear pink on this day in support of the cause (and it just happens to be Valentine’s Day!).


To help meet the needs of our families, we will offer the option of care from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. during our March vacation. This will be available to all Lower School students on a first-come, first-served basis, and some dates have already filled up. Rate for this care is $80/day. If you plan to utilize this service, please contact Leslie. The deadline to sign up for care over March break is Friday, February 15.


Enrollment agreements were sent out last week with a March 1 deadline. We appreciate your prompt return of these agreements as staffing and schedules for next year will be constructed based on students whose re-enrollments are submitted by March 1.


To help combat the winter doldrums, NYA plans a Spirit Week each year. This year, Spirit Week will be February 25 through March 1. We will mix things up a bit with some special dress days and fun activities and projects. The special dress days might include pajama day, orange and black day, or wacky attire. Classroom teachers will send out details with specific information for each child’s class.

Summer Programs Button 2019EXPERIENCE SUMMER AT NYA

Registration for Experience Summer at NYA is now open. NYA offers a host of summer programs for toddlers to age 15. Camps include a variety of sports (tennis, lacrosse, and soccer), art, theater, dance, circus, science, magic, and more! Register by April 15 to receive the early bird discount!


2018 NYA YearbooksThe NYA Yearbook is a much-loved publication. The Lower School students do have a small section in the book, though the primary focus is on our older students. Yearbooks are available for $55. If you would like to purchase a yearbook for your Lower School student, please contact Meghan Scribner by February 22. Be sure to include the name and grade of your student(s). The yearbooks will be passed out to students during our NYA Picnic/Fun Day on May 31. Payment may be made directly to the Business Office, and checks should be made out to NYA Yearbook.


NYA will host our sixth annual March Break Photo Reading Challenge. This year’s challenge is Share a Story. Find someone to read to – your grandparents, your favorite four-legged friend, your stuffed animal collection, whomever, whatever, wherever; take a photo or a selfie; and email it to Eliot Grady. All photo entries must be received by noon on Wednesday, March 20 to be considered. The pictures will be judged by a panel of faculty and staff, and a winner for each Division (Lower, Middle, Upper, and Faculty/Staff) will be announced on Friday, March 22 at Friday Forum and via newsletters. Get creative, have fun, and READ!!


NYA will host a Girls on the Run (GOTR) girls_on_the_run_logogroup on campus this spring. GOTR is open to girls in grades three through five. The group will practice on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:15-4:45 p.m. from March 18 through May 29. Each practice will focus on a topic related to the girls’ lives and include discussions, games, and a running workout. The running practice helps to prepare the girls for an end of season celebratory 5K Run with other GOTR girls from all over Maine! Your daughter does not have to be a runner to participate; she can run, jog, walk, or skip her way to reaching her goal of crossing the finish line! Registration closes on Thursday, February 14. Visit Girls on the Run Maine to register or learn more about the program.


Studio Band 80's 2019This Friday, February 15 will be NYA Studio Band’s annual “Last Waltz,” their final performance of the year. Student musicians from grades 9-12 will perform a diverse set of songs by contemporary and classic artists ranging from Red Hot Chili Peppers and The B-52’s to Half Alive and A-Ha. The concert will take place in Safford Center, beginning at 6:30 p.m. and promises to be a fun time for all ages. Come out and jam to some awesome tunes and great performances!  ~ Ian Ramsey and Ross Markonish


Please join Athletic Director Jack Hardy on Tuesday, February 26 from 8:00-9:00 a.m. in the Middle Community Room for an interactive conversation about the state of sports at NYA. This event will feature a review of our sporting success so far this year and a preview of what is to come. Lower, Middle, and Upper School parents are all invited to learn more about the opportunities available for students, ask questions, and share feedback on what is working well and what you would like to see moving forward. Coffee and snacks will be provided.


2/13 Soirée Planning Meeting, MSCR 2:00-2:30 p.m.
2/13 Code Orange Dress Down Day
2/14 Last Day to register for Girls on the Run
2/14 Dress Down Day for Tri for a Cure
2/15 Last Day to sign up for March Break Care
2/15 Experience NYA
2/15 Studio Band Last Waltz Performance, Safford  6:30 p.m.
2/18 Presidents’ Day NO SCHOOL
2/18 NYA Open Skate, NYA Travis Roy Ice Arena 12:00-1:00 p.m.
2/22 Deadline to order an NYA Yearbook
2/25-3/1 Spirit Week
2/26 NYA Sports Update with Jack Hardy, MSCR 8:00-9:00 a.m.
2/27 Lower School Arts Celebration, NYA gym 2:30 p.m.
3/1 Re-Enrollment Agreements Due
3/1 Last Day of classes before March Break
3/4-3/15 March Break  NO SCHOOL
3/4, 8, 11, & 15 NYA Open Skate, NYA Travis Roy Ice Arena 12:00-1:00 p.m.
3/18 Classes resume
3/18 Girls on the Run begins
3/20 Deadline to submit photo for March Break Reading Challenge


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