Connections: A Newsletter from the Somerville Public Schools – April 4, 2014



It’s been a beautiful week! Celebrate “Brain Building in Progress” week during the Week of the Young Child, April 5-12 at upcoming School or Community events, such as the Friends
of Healey Porter Square Books Fundraiser this Saturday, 6-9pm. Enjoy the weekend!
News & Notes

NW/FC Basketball Team Claims 2014 GBBL Championship Title

Somerville’s Next Wave/Full Circle Basketball Team capped off an outstanding regular season and headed into the playoffs undefeated. They continued their winning streak during the playoffs at UMASS Lowell and ended a spectacular season with a 77-51 win over Lighthouse School last week to claim their second consecutive Greater Boston Basketball League Championship title. Congratulations to the Next Wave/Full Circle players, coaches and school staff for an exciting season that was defined by continuous energy and commitment, and a dedication to working hard on and off the court.

Pictured: Standing (L-R) Carlo Gerton, Terrell McCall, Donald Fuentes, Brian Carrington, Coach Joel Blackmer;
Kneeling (L-R) Coach David Aronofsky, Henry Augustin, Shawn Soares, Edwin Acosta, Tyler Huynh

ESCS’s Sylvia Jenkins Artwork Displayed at NAEA National Conference in San Diego
Congratulations to East Somerville Community School 2nd grade student, Sylvia Jenkins, for having her Youth Art Month entry selected for display at the National Art Education Association’s (NAEA) National Convention held in San Diego March 28-April 1. Sylvia’s Watercolor Landscape Collage was selected from among 644 pieces currently on display at the State Transportation Building in Boston. View other artwork from Somerville Public Schools students, as well as students from around the Commonwealth, displayed at the State Transportation Building in Boston as part of Youth Art Month (YAM). The exhibit is open weekdays 9-5 until April 25, 2014. For a glimpse at the Youth Art Month Pictures from SPARK!, the NAEA Conference 2014 in San Diego, visit For more information about YAM, visit

STELLAR: Somerville + Tufts Enhancing Leadership, Literacy and Readiness
An exciting new district-wide partnership between Somerville Public Schools and Tufts University will bring together veteran and student teachers to address classroom challenges, refine current practices and develop well-grounded best practices for teaching children preschool through second grade. Earlier this week in a special event held at the Healey School, SPS and Tufts announced this collaboration to create early education best practices by partnering veteran Somerville Public Schools teachers with full-time interns from the master’s program at the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Development in Tufts’ Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The program, STELLAR (Somerville + Tufts Enhancing Leadership, Literacy and Readiness) will initially launch at the Healey School, but will expand to other schools in the district. STELLAR supports the SPS focus on universal literacy by third grade and the recent universal kindergarten readiness report commissioned by the schools, City of Somerville and School Committee. Read the press release announcing STELLAR at:

SPS Music Department Holds Annual City-wide Choral Festival

The Somerville Public Schools Music Department held its 4th Annual City-wide Choral Festival last month to celebrate choral music. Somerville middle grades and high school students from all around the city gathered at the East Somerville Community School Auditorium to sing together and perform for each other. The Festival included a master class presentation to students by Roxbury-based a cappella men’s group, “The Harmonizing All-Stars of Boston.”

Spring into Action with Somerville Adult Evening Classes
Spring has sprung in Somerville! Welcome the season by treating yourself to a new opportunity for personal growth. Learn a new skill, or polish up on a particular interest. Please join us, and share the following information with a friend. Enrollment is open, but DON’T DELAY. Some classes start next week!
· Last Chance for Teens needing Drivers Ed before summer! Starts April 15. See below for details.
· Lecture Series:
o Declutter your paperwork!: $20 – Tuesday, May 13, 7-8:30pm
o Extreme Couponing: $25 – Tuesday, May 13, 6-8:30pm ($5 discount for PTA members)
o Financial Planning and Beyond: $15 – Tuesday, May 20, 6:30-8:30pm
· Classes in:
o YOGA: $25 for six (6) 1-hour classes: April 8, 15, 29 and May 6, 13, 20; 7:45-8:45pm (drop-in $7/class)
o Gold Zumba: $25 for five (5) 1-hour classes: April 29 and May 6, 13, 20, 27; 6:30-7:30pm (drop-in $7/class)
o Furniture Making: $120 for eight (8) 3-hour classes: April 10, 17, May 15, 22, 29 and June 5, 12, 19; 6-9pm (drop-in $15/class)
o Driver’s Education: $50 to register, $590 for twice a week for 5 weeks: April 15, 17, 29 and May 1, 6, 8, 13, 15, 20, 22; 6:00-9:00pm
o Sewing: $15 a class; Thursdays, 6-9pm; No sewing machine needed!
o Spanish: $15 a class; Tuesdays, 6-8pm; April 8, 15, 29, May 6, 13, 20, 27 ends with a Spanish dinner celebration.
o English, History, Math, Science, Medical Interpretation: $15 for most classes, others bundled for a bargain; both Tuesday and Thursday evenings; 6-9pm
Register by phone or in person. Call: Evening School Principal Sophia Carafotes at (617) 628-2594, M-F 8am-4pm or Tuesday and Thursday evenings at (617) 625-6600, x6100, 6-9pm. To register in person, stop by the Somerville High School Main Office (81 Highland Avenue) any Tuesday or Thursday evening between 6-8pm prior to the start of the course, or on the night of the course. Pay by check or money order made payable to Somerville Adult Evening School.

What’s Happening

April: “Charlie Bubbles” Comes to Somerville
Just in time for baseball season, Charlie Bubbles from The Adventures of Charlie Bubbles book series presents “Charlie Bubbles to Fenway.” Author Paul Carafotes, a Somerville native, will be in Somerville to talk about his new book in The Adventures of Charlie Bubbles series later this month. Learn more about the author and his “Bubbles Tour” in a Somerville Times article published October 2013 ( To find out more about Charlie’s visit to Fenway, stop by on: Friday, April 25, 10:30am at the Daddy Jones Bar, 525 Medford Street (seating is limited for this event, please rsvp to; Saturday, April 26, 11am-1pm at the Somerville City Club, 20 Innerbelt Road (seating is limited for this event; please rsvp to; Saturday, April 26, 2:30pm at the Somerville Public Library, 79 Highland Avenue. For more information about Charlie Bubbles, visit

April: National Poetry Month
Kid! and Snowflake! multimedia magazines are building their second annual online Poetry Wall. All students in grades K-8 in Somerville and everywhere are invited to submit one or more of their best original poems they have written. Poems should include the poet’s name and, for contact purposes only, his/her grade, school and teacher’s or parent’s name. Please send all poetry to The wall will be built during April, but submissions are welcome any time. Poems on the wall are eligible for possible selection for a future print edition of Snowflake! or Kid! magazine.

April 5-12: Week of the Young Child
Week of the Young Child is a national observance to focus on the needs of young children and their families. In Massachusetts, we celebrate Brain Building in Progress Week with a focus on how the daily activities families do with their children stimulate learning and create learners. Special attention to “brain building” in the SFLC Literacy Playgroups throughout the week.

Monday, April 7: Autism Awareness Month
Join the discussion on “Managing Time and Energy with Children on the Autism Spectrum” at a Parent/Guardian Discussion Group on Monday, April 7th, 6:30-7:30pm at the Kennedy School Library (5 Cherry St.). Home schedules and routines including leisure time activities will be discussed. For information, contact Debby Higgins, SPED PAC Coordinator, or (617) 625-6600 x6829. Please send questions about Home Schedule & Routines and Leisure Time Activities that you would like addressed at the meeting to Debby Higgins. The SPS SPED PAC has assisted in the arrangements for this evening.

Wednesday, April 9: Raising a Reader
Interactive reading helps build the brain! Join us Wednesday, April 9, 6:30-7:30pm at the Capuano Early Childhood Center (150 Glen Street), to learn ways to get more out of sharing stories with your child. This workshop is for parents/guardians of young children. Presenters include: Michelle Laskey, Honey Schnapp, Fernanda Villar, and Nayi Padilla of the Somerville Family Learning Collaborative. Please register by 4/7 at or (617) 629-5476. Child care is available. Space is limited.

This week in the schools:
Visit your child’s school website,, and click on the “calendar of events” link at the top of the page for a complete list of all the activities happening at school this month.
Friday, April 4th, 5:00-10:00pm: Healey Grades 7/8 Dance-a-thon, at the Healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Friday, April 4th, 6:00pm: Healey PTA-Sponsored Movie Night – Frozen, at the Healey School
Saturday, April 5th, 6:00-9:00pm: Friends of Healey Porter Square Books Fundraiser
Tuesday, April 8th, 9:30-10:30am: AFAS Grade One Author Event, at the Argenziano School (290 Washington Street)
Tuesday, April 8th, 6:00-7:30pm: Brown School Council Meeting, at the Brown School (201 Willow Avenue)
Tuesday, April 8th, 6:00-7:30pm: Healey Community Meeting, at the Healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Wednesday, April 9th: HALF DAY OF SCHOOL (PreK Dismissal at 11:30am, K-8 Dismissal at noon)
Wednesday, April 9th: Healey School Grades 5 & 6 Science Fair, at the Healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Wednesday, April 9th, 10:00-11:00am: AFAS Turkey Bowl, at the Argenziano School (290 Washington Street)
Wednesday, April 9th, 6:30-8:30pm: SHS School Improvement Council Meeting, at Somerville High School Library (81 Highland Avenue)
Wednesday, April 9th, 6:30-7:30pm: Raising a Reader, at the Capuano Early Childhood Center (150 Glen St.)
Thursday, April 10th: Healey Grades 7 & 8 Science Fair, at the Healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Thursday, April 10th, 8:15-9:15am & 7:15-8:15pm: Brown School Parent/Guardian Coffee Hour, at the Brown School (201 Willow Avenue)
Thursday, April 10th, 9:00-11:00am: Somerville High School Career Fair, at the Somerville High School Atrium (81 Highland Avenue)
Thursday, April 10th, 5:00-8:00pm: AFAS Immigration Museum Grade 8 Heritage Night, at the Argenziano School (290 Washington Street)
Thursday, April 10th, 7:00-9:00pm: Somerville High School After the Acceptance Night, at Somerville High School Library (81 Highland Avenue)
Friday, April 11th: Healey Field Trip to Tufts “Kids to College” (Isbitz & Patton)
Friday, April 11th, 2:45-5:30pm: ESCS Math Activity Afternoon, at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross Street)
Friday, April 11th, 6:00-8:30pm: ESCS 7th/8th Grade Dance, at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross Street)
Friday, April 11th, 6:30-8:30pm: Healey School K-4 Dance, at the Healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Friday, April 11th, 7:00-11:00pm: Junior/Sophomore Gala, in the SHS Field House (81 Highland Avenue)

Upcoming School Committee Meetings
You can find the complete School Committee schedule, agendas and meeting minutes (as approved) online at
Monday, April 7th, 6:00-7:00pm: School Committee Meeting for Personnel, in the Board of Aldermen Chambers of Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)
Monday, April 7th, 7:00pm: School Committee Regular Meeting, in the Board of Aldermen Chambers of Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)
Tuesday, April 8th, 6:00-7:00pm: Rules Management Subcommittee Meeting, in the Central Office Conference Room (42 Cross Street)
Tuesday, April 8th, 7:00pm: Educational Programs and Instruction Subcommittee Meeting, in the Central Office Conference Room (42 Cross Street)

Community Events
· Saturday Homework Help for Teens at the Somerville Public Library: FREE math, science and writing support at the Somerville Public Library (SPL) Central Branch. Saturdays, 1:00-2:30pm in the SPL Teen Room. No appointment is necessary. Teens just need to bring your work.
· Friday, April 4th, 3:00-5:00pm: Teen Cookie Stamp Workshop – Part 2: Teens: Now that your cookie stamp has been fired, return to collect your cookie stamp and stamp, bake, and exchange cookies! Free at the Somerville Public Library (79 Highland Avenue)
· Friday, April 4th, 7:00-11:00pm: Groundwork Somerville Fundraising Gala and Volunteer Appreciation event at Anthony’s, home of Cuisines en Locale. Enjoy live music by PJ Project, prizes and much more – all in the company of friends, while supporting a great community organization. Tickets are on sale now. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit
· Saturday, April 5th, 10:00am-12:00pm: 14th Annual Rabies Clinic, The City’s Health Department along with Somerville Animal Control will hold their 14th Annual Rabies Clinic on April 5, 2014 from 10am to noon. Dogs must be on leashes and cats in carriers. Cost is $10/animal; City Clerks will also be onsite to license dogs: $20 if spayed or neutered, $30 if not. Contact the Health Dep’t. with additional questions at (617) 625-6600 x 4300.
· Sunday, April 6th, 3:00pm: Family Story time with Keshet’s Transgender Working Group, at the Somerville Public Library Main Branch (79 Highland Ave.). Picture book reading and activities for families and anyone else interested in participating. Led by Keshet’s Transgender Working Group and the LGBT Liaison to Somerville.
· Wednesday, April 9th, 12:30-3:30pm: Middle School Writers’ Den, at the Somerville Central Library Auditorium. After school creative writing for students in grades 5-8. Free and open to all interested students in this age group who love to write and are active writers. We will meet informally to share our work, learn some tips and discuss publishing possibilities. Please bring a short completed piece of writing. There will be writing and discussion of writing. Poetry, fiction, nonfiction, school newspaper reporting, whatever your interest Contact: Alan Ball / 617-636-9033 /
· Saturday, April 12th, 8:30am-4:30pm: Youth Mental Health First Aid – A Community Training Open to the Public. Learn about risk factors and warning signs of a variety of mental health challenges common among adolescents. Learn how to assess for risk of suicide or harm, how to listen nonjudgmentally, give reassurance and information, encourage appropriate professional help, and encourage self-help and other support strategies. Registration required. $25 donation suggested. For more information, contact Patty Contente (617) 625-6600, x4325 or
· Sunday, April 13th, starting at 10:30 a.m.: 5th Annual Shape Up Somerville / Recreation 5K Road Race. Race starts and ends at the Somerville High School concourse, 93 Highland Avenue. The day begins with a 1-mile children’s “Fun Run” at 10:30 a.m., followed by a 5K adult race & walk at 11:00 a.m. Registration is open to all community members; $5 for youth under age 10, $20 for adults. Price includes a commemorative t-shirt, refreshments and a celebration following the adult race. Register at, or stop by City Hall or the Recreation Department (19 Walnut St.) for printed applications. Checks should be made payable to Somerville Youth and Recreation Foundation (SYRF), and can be mailed or delivered to Somerville Recreation, 19 Walnut Street, Somerville, MA 02143. For additional information, call 617-625-6600 ext. 2980.
· 2014 Tufts Kids’ Day. Registration is open for the annual Tufts Kids’ Day event, scheduled for Saturday, April 19. Kids’ Day is an annual event sponsored by the Leonard Carmichael Society, a community service organization at Tufts. Now in its 51st year, the event is organized to provide local children in grades K-3 with a day of learning and fun, including carnival rides, a chemistry show, and a magic show. For more information and registration details, visit

Looking Ahead
Check our online Calendar of events ( for more information.
· Tuesday, April 15th: Best Buddies Dinner Banquet Fundraiser
· Wednesday, April 16th: 1st Annual Band Festival
· Wednesday, April 16th: AFAS School Council Meeting
· Thursday, April 17th: AFAS Grade 8 Field Trip to the Museum of Fine Arts
· Friday, April 18th: NO SCHOOL
· Monday, April 21st – Friday, April 25th: NO SCHOOL – April Vacation

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Susana Hernandez Morgan
Coordinator of Grant Writing & Information
Somerville Public Schools
42 Cross Street
Somerville, MA 02145
Internal office extension: 6013

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