Lower School Newsletter for January 14, 2018

Happy New Year!  We hope you enjoyed the opportunity to read the class reports and hear more about your child’s time and progress here at school. There is vibrant learning taking place in each classroom, and the teachers love having the chance to share a small piece of that with you. Please feel free to contact your child’s teacher if you have any questions. In April, parents will have the opportunity to have a second round of conferences as well. It is truly an honor and pleasure to work with and nurture your children each day. We look forward to continued curiosity, growth, and fun throughout the spring semester!

Marissa Markonish
Head of Lower and Middle Schools


Friday, February 2 will be an early release to allow faculty and staff time for professional development meetings. School will run from 8:00-11:30 a.m. on this day with a special class schedule. We will have morning snack, but lunch will not be served. There will be no After Care on this day. All students should plan to be picked up at 11:30 a.m. Buses will leave at 11:40 a.m.


Thanks to the efforts of fourth grade student Nathanael Wayashe, a local meteorologist from WMTW Channel 8 News will be coming to NYA on Tuesday, January 16 for a Weather at Your School presentation. The guest meteorologist will be meeting with students in grades two through five in the Middle School Community Room. The meteorologist will broadcast live from NYA and then stay to chat with our students and answer some of their questions about weather. Our in-house meteorologist, Forecaster Jack (Jack Sillin ’18), will also be on-hand to work with the students.


Parents of children in Toddler 2, Primary 2, Primary 3, and Grade 4 are invited to set up a time for a Transition Meeting with Marissa Markonish and Leslie Durgin, Associate Director of Admission and Lower School. These meetings offer the opportunity for parents to hear more about what to expect as children transition to the next level at NYA. Parents will be able to see sample schedules, receive a curriculum overview, ask questions, etc. Parents may sign up for a meeting time here. If the available times do not work with your schedule, please contact Marissa to arrange another time. We look forward to talking with you!

beauty_beast_posterIT’S THE TALE AS OLD AS TIME

Work is well underway for NYA’s production of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Students in grades 5-12 are presenting this beloved musical featuring the ambitious, book-loving Belle (Elizabeth Gagnon ’20) and the hideous Beast (Justin Guo ’18) desperate to break a curse plaguing him and his servants. The show is based on the 1991 animated Disney film which was then adapted into a live-action movie in 2017. Favorite songs include “Be Our Guest” and “Beauty and the Beast.” Performances will be Friday, February 9, at 6:30 p.m., and Saturday, February 10, at 2:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. This show is appropriate for all ages. Tickets are $8.00, and can be reserved through Heidi Lathrop or by calling Heidi at 847-5432.

CODING WITH TYNKERcodingjenaugustdec2017-8-resize

In a program conceived by Ellen Gagne and piloted with her third and fourth grade classroom, students have the opportunity to learn coding! Since the beginning of this academic year, the class has been meeting weekly in the Russell Hall computer lab to explore Tynker.com and other online coding resources. This activity is a fun and interactive way to learn the concepts of programming logic and structure, and, best of all, students are able to log in to Tynker from home to continue their work. It has sparked a lot of enthusiasm, and the kids have really run with it, exploring other STEM initiatives they find interesting!  ~ Jen August



The Lower School Arts Celebration will take place on Wednesday, February 28 at 2:30 p.m. in the gym (snow date = Thursday, March 1).  All Lower School students will take part in a musical performance. Following the concert, parents and students will remain in the gym to enjoy the art show and brief reception. Mark your calendars now to join us for this special event!


Attendance is taken at 8:05 a.m. each day. A parent should call the office at 846-9051 by 8:15 a.m. when a student will be absent all day, arriving late, or leaving early – even if the parent has informed the classroom teacher. For further details on attendance policies, please consult the NYA Lower School Family Handbook. Thank you for your help with this process.

STUDIO BAND ACOUSTIC SHOWstudio-band-acoustic-show-social-graphic

On Thursday, January 18, the NYA Studio Band will be performing its 11th Annual Acoustic Show at 7:00 p.m. at the First Universalist Church in Yarmouth. This year’s Studio Band includes a cross-section of Upper School students, grades 9-12, ranging from four year veterans to first time performers, some of whom have learned a new instrument only this year! The band will be performing songs from a range of artists, including The Roots, Macklemore, The Lumineers, The Allman Brothers, and David Bowie, and it is sure to be a fun-filled evening of music for all. Admission is free (donations to help support Studio Band costs are gladly accepted), and the event is child-friendly, so all are encouraged to attend this hometown show! Our final show of the season, Studio Band’s Last Waltz, will be on Friday, February 16 at 6:30 p.m. in Safford.  ~ Ross Markonish


On Wednesday, January 17, a group will come to NYA to do a puppet show for students in grades 1-4. In this friendly and age-appropriate puppet show, they remind students about personal body safety and encourage them to reach out to a trusted adult if they ever feel hurt or scared. We are pleased to bring this presentation to campus as we strive to nurture our students in a safe community with caring teachers and staff.


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 will run only if a minimum number of students enroll. Rate for this care is $80/day.  If you anticipate utilizing this service, please contact Leslie Durgin. The deadline to sign up for care over March break is Friday, February 16.


Students have several options for after school activities this spring semester.

briohippityhopBrio Dance Studio will offer an introduction to hip hop and jazz dance styles to boys and girls ages five through eight. This all-level class will encourage creativity and expression through dance as well as include basic dance technique, a warm up, taking turns, and working with a group.


Mad Science of Maine will be offering two classes for students in kindergarten through fifth grade this spring:  Jump into the Future and Engineering ManiaJump into the Future begins on Tuesday, January 23. Check here to register or for more information.

girls_on_the_run_logoGirls in grades three through five will have the opportunity to join an NYA Girls on the Run (GOTR) site later this spring. 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! To learn more about the GOTR program, check out these links: video 1video 2, and What is GOTR.


Sewing Club will meet in Mrs. Gagne’s classroom on Thursday, January 18, January 25, and February 1 from 3:10-4:00 p.m. Each child will learn how to use a sewing machine and how to sew by hand. The students will make a standard size pillowcase and a felt tic-tac-toe board. NYA will supply all materials, and there is no participation fee. Parents of interested third and fourth grade students should email Ellen Gagne to sign up.

SAVE THE DATE!rossgreene-232x300

The NYA Parents’ Association is pleased to announce that we will be bringing Dr. Ross Greene to NYA on April 4.  Dr. Greene is a child psychologist, founder of the non-profit organization Lives in the Balance, originator of the Collaborative & Proactive Solutions (CPS) approach, and New York Times bestselling author. His books include The Explosive Child, Lost at SchoolLost & Found, and Raising Human Beings. Dr. Greene will be presenting to students in grades five through twelve, parents, and faculty and staff. We are excited to bring this renowned speaker to NYA!


woodhullNYA’s Parents’ Association is hosting a Parents’ Night Out event for all NYA parents on January 17, 2018 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Woodhull Public House in Yarmouth. Babysitting will be available at the Lower School for toddlers through fourth grade students from 4:45-7:15 p.m. We hope to see you there!


On Wednesday, January 17 at 7:00 p.m., NYA is pleased to be sponsoring the presentation of the film Angst at Yarmouth High School. The showing is open to the public and is recommended for students in eighth grade and up. The film explores the pervasiveness of anxiety among young people today and follows the lives of a few students and families coping with anxiety. It also has an appearance by Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps who discusses his mental health struggles.


1/15 Martin Luther King Jr. Day  NO SCHOOL
1/16 WMTW Weather at Your School
1/17 Parents Night Out, Woodhull Public House, Yarmouth 5:00-7:00 p.m.
1/17 Showing of Angst at Yarmouth High School 7:00 p.m.
1/18 Studio Band Acoustic Performance, Unitarian Church 7:00 p.m.
1/23 Mad Science Jump into the Future begins, Mertz 611 3:15-4:15 p.m.
2/2 Early Release for Faculty and Staff Development 11:30 a.m.
2/9-2/10 Beauty and the Beast performances
2/16 Studio Band Last Waltz Performance, Safford  6:30 p.m.
2/19 Presidents’ Day NO SCHOOL
2/28 Lower School Arts Celebration, NYA gym 2:30 p.m.
3/2 Last Day of classes before March Break
3/5-3/16 March Break
3/19 Classes resume


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