The Lower School Newsletter for October 2, 2016

A critical component of NYA’s mission is for students to develop concern for the larger community and an appreciation for the natural environment. Our teachers find numerous opportunities to share and develop these qualities with even our youngest students. On Wednesday, October 21, Ms. Gallagher’s and Ms. Chapman’s classes traveled to Bay View/Ferry Beach in Saco for a beach clean-up day. Working in two teams, the students were able to clean up a mile and a half stretch of the beach, picking up 667 pieces of trash! The classes reflected on the impact of the trash on the environment and our ability to enjoy it. They also made sure to take some time to have fun and delight in the sand and surf. Mrs. Gagne’s class is working on a service project entitled “Save the Monarchs.” The class has been studying the anatomy, the lifecycle, the migration, and sadly the decline of the monarch population while witnessing the incredible monarch lifecycle in their classroom. As part of their service project, the group went to the Fels-Groves Farm Preserve in Yarmouth to take scientific notes of what they observed in the milkweed field and to release 14 monarch caterpillars in hopes that the life cycle will continue in its’ natural habitat. With milkweed pods brought back from the preserve, students will dry out the seeds and plant them in our back garden to supply future Monarchs with their precious food! In addition to their own monarch studies, the Primary classes are traveling to a local orchard to gain knowledge and appreciation of farming and then to collaborate on making their own applesauce. Truly amazing ways to connect with and appreciate the wonders of the environment beyond our doors!

Marissa Markonish
Head of Lower and Middle Schools

Milkweed 2Milkweed 1Milkweed 3


On Wednesday, October 5, Miss Monique’s and Miss Nancy’s Primary classes will head to Orchard Hill Farms in Cumberland for a special apple-picking trip. A representative from the orchard will talk with the group about the history of the orchard, the types of apples that grow there, and how to carefully pick the best apples. Each child will be given a half-peck bag for picking. Everyone will also enjoy a hayride and some apple cider! After the apple picking is done, the group will come together in a large circle and each child will be asked to pick out one apple to share into a large basket. These apples will come back to school and be used to make applesauce as a classroom community sharing project. Applesauce made with one apple picked by each child is pretty special applesauce!


Ms. Gallagher’s class read Ten Little Rubber Ducks by Eric Carle, a book inspired by the thousands of rubber ducks lost overboard from a cargo ship which then traveled all over the world. This book was a great follow-up to the class’ beach clean-up day and introduction to their exploration of how debris travels on the ocean currents. It also kicks off a unit on Eric Carle leading up to a very special class trip. On Friday, October 14, the class will head to Merrill Auditorium in Portland for a performance and workshop. Portland Ovations is presenting “Brown Bear, Brown Bear and Other Treasured Stories,” an innovative puppet and scenic effects show incorporating characters from numerous Eric Carle classics. The internationally acclaimed performance is sure to be a delight!


A reminder to parents to please label your child’s clothing and outwear. This becomes especially important as the children have additional layers for chillier temperatures.  Clothing without a label frequently lands in the Lost and Found. With the change in seasons, it is also time to re-stock the extra clothing bins (for Primary Classroom parents) with long pants and shirts.


NYA has multiple Lost and Found collection areas.  If you are missing any items, please first check the Lost and Found cubby at the Lower School.  If the item is not there, it may have been turned in to the Upper School bin (in the hallway on the way to the gym) or the Middle School bin (located in the hallway between reception and the Health Services’ office).


NYA will host Maxim Health for a flu shot clinic on Tuesday, October 11 from 7:30-11:30 a.m. in the Middle School. The clinic is open to students in grades five through twelve. In addition, Lower School students ages four and up may attend the clinic if accompanied by a parent. Insurance and consent forms are required in order to receive the shot. Parents not accompanying a child must fill out both the Immunization Consent Form and the Insurance Consent Form in advance, and students must have the forms in hand at the clinic.  Click here to see which types of insurance are accepted. If you do not have one of these insurance plans, you may pay twenty-five dollars in cash or by check made out to: Maxim Health. Contact Ashley Moody with any questions.


It is essential that we have current health forms on file for every student at NYA. If you have not already done so, please complete all necessary health forms as soon as possible and turn them in to the Health Office. Forms can be found on the PARENT tab at the top of our website. Please note that seventh and eighth grade students without forms will not be able to attend the experiential trips. Contact Ashley Moody with any questions.


NYA’s elementary classes have been taking part in the Scholastic Reading Club for the past few years, and now, thanks to the efforts of our librarian Jill O’Connor, Primary students will receive the Scholastic book fliers and have the opportunity to order books. These fliers are a fun way to gauge which books are of interest to your child and are a great tool for finding new books to read together from your public library or to suggest as gifts from family. If you would like to order books, you can send in the order form with a check (made out to Scholastic Reading Club with the class code in the memo space) or visit the website to register and buy books online. The Primary Class Code is Q9HV6. For every book ordered through Scholastic, we earn points to purchase books for our Toddler and Primary classrooms and our Lower School Book Nook. Happy reading!


Interested in volunteering at the Middle and Upper School Grandparents’ Day this year?  This annual event, where we welcome grandparents and grand-friends to campus, is a lot of fun and a lot of work, and we need your help.  Please contact Debra Ramsey and find out where you can help out!  The Lower School will host our own Grandparents’ Day in May, including musical performances, a tea party, and classroom visits.


You should have received information for ordering your child’s school portraits from Coffee Pond Photography last week. If you did not receive the email or have questions, be sure to check your spam folder and to have your spam blocker set to accept emails from Contact Coffee Pond’s Customer Care Department for assistance by phone (1-800-632-2323, ext. 0) or email.  Our Picture Retake Day is scheduled for Wednesday, November 9 from 8:00-9:30 a.m. in the Middle School Community Room.


10/5Miss Nancy’s and Miss Monique’s Class Trip to the Apple OrchardOrchard Hill Farms
10/10Columbus DayNo School
10/14Ms. Gallagher’s Class Trip to Eric Carle Workshop and Performance Merrill Auditorium
10/28End of Quarter
10/31Halloween Costume Day and Parade
10/31Chewonki Scales and Tails Visit to NYA
11/2Dress Down Day for Holiday Families$3.00
11/3-11/4Parent-Teacher ConferencesNo School