The Newton News
January 18, 2019
The Newton School's mission is t o develop each child’s potential for academic success, engagement and overall well-being. Through this process, we will enrich each child’s education with community involvement, collaboration and outreach.
School Notes & Athletics
Mr. Bagnato
I hope that over the past few weeks, you have become aware that The Strafford School Board has hired an independent consultant to try to investigate the question, “What do students and families consider about the climate and culture of the school as they choose whether or not to keep their students at the school for 7th or 8th grade?” . Dawn Ellis will be our consultant ( ). The information gathered will be vitally important as the Strafford School Board looks to improve Newton. Creating the best school possible is essential to the town, its future, and the children that live here. I am writing to encourage you to provide your perspective to the consultant. We must get as many parents, alumni, staff, and community members as possible to participate so the data represents our entire community.

There will be two ways to participate. 
  1. You will receive a link to a survey, which the consultant created and will manage, early next week. Paper surveys will be available at the Town Office, Coburn’s and the Morrill Library as well.
  2. You can sign up to talk with the consultant (Dawn Ellis) between 3:30 and 7:00 on January, 29th. In order to get the most amount of participants, it was decided that the time slots would remain 5-minutes in length. I will communicate some questions provided by the consultant for you to consider ahead of time next week. In order to sign-up and talk with the consultant, please do one of the following:

  • Click this link to see our SignUps on
  • Review the SignUps listed and choose the one(s) you like.
  • Sign up! It's easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on
If you do not have online access, an e-mail, or simply do not want to sign up through the website, please contact Sarah North at or 765-4546. Leave a message explaining when, from 3.30 to 7:00, you would like to meet with the consultant

I ask you to put your trust in this process and the Strafford School Board. The data gathered will be a driving force in creating goals and actions. After the information is collected, a written report will be presented by the consultant to the school board. It is imperative we do what is best for all students of Strafford. Our community must have a data in order to make a thoughtful decision as it will impact children for years to come.

Please contact me or any school board member with questions regarding this process.
Athletics and School Activities

No School:

MLK Day Assembly:
Tuesday, January 22nd 8:30-9:00

3/4 girls basketball game vs 1st Branch 5:00 pm on Wed. 1/23
3/4 boys basketball game vs 1st Branch 6:00 pm on Wed. 1/23
5/6 girls basketball game @ Tunbridge 5:00 pm on Wednesday 1/23
5/6 boys basketball game @ Tunbridge 6:00 pm on Wednesday 1/23

Strafford Nordic Center's SNAP Cross Country Program Tuesday, Jan. 22nd 3:30-4:30pm.
Strafford Lions Club Ski and Snowboard program Friday, January 25th 1:00-4:00pm
K-2 News
Ms. Kicza, Mrs. Longcore & Mrs. Robinson
K-2 visited the senior citizens’ lunch this Wednesday to sing “This Little Light of Mine” and “Yellow Submarine,” since they’d missed last week due to the snow day. These kids light up the room with their sweet faces and voices! They also enjoyed learning a new song this week, “Ting-A-Lay-O,” which they want to practice and sing to the seniors next month. In preparation for Martin Luther King Jr. Day they learned a new song about him, “P-E-A-C-E,” and sang “We Shall Overcome.”

We also got together Friday morning to learn a little bit about Martin Luther King, hear a book about him, sing songs, and think about how they might make the world a better place. They each wrote a dream they have to make things better. They shared great ideas and lots of older kids helped younger kids write. Check out some of the photos of them writing their dreams!
3/4 News
Ms. Coté & Mrs. Marzot
What a relief it was to have a regular, normal five day week with Ms. Coté and Mrs. Marzot in school! We are getting back into routines and have been talking a lot about expected behaviors. We ask a lot of the 3/4 students, and we expect that when a guest teacher is present they are given the same respect that the students offer us. A social skill that we have been working on this week has been being kind with not only our words, but also with our tone and body language. Ask your student about some different ways to demonstrate kindness.

Students have been learning more about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the reasons why he was right to fight to get unfair laws changed. Students have been exploring Ms. Coté’s rock collection and are eager to bring in their own collections. Starting Wednesday, feel free to have them bring in some rocks to share. 

Third graders have been learning about place value, rounding, and the different ways to write numbers. They are continuing to practice their multiplication facts as well. Fourth grade mathematicians are working hard on their equivalent fractions. Mrs. Marzot’s reading group has been diving into their nonfiction reading skills and working on determining the main idea with some supporting details. Ms. Coté’s reading group has been writing their own versions of Goldilocks and the Three Bears set in Strafford. 

We hope that you have a safe, warm and fun long weekend in the snow!
5/6 News
Ms. Tremblay & Mr. Walker
It's been a full week of activities in the 5/6 cluster! The students have been traveling around the world collecting artifacts in their Caravan game. They have participated in many types of information gathering, and have given reports on their findings. 

One of the activities, which we just started, includes writing down all the places that they have traveled to. From those lists we will be uncovering all the locations on a scratch-off classroom map. The goal is to see how much of the world we have seen collectively. It's been amazing how much we've all learned about world geography and how much fun we have had!!
Middle School News
Ms. Kanoff & Mrs. White
Passion project: We are planning two times for the celebration event, both on Tuesday, January 29th:
9:00 a.m. - 9:45 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. A letter is being sent to parents in regard to the evening event. This is a time to celebrate the achievements of our students.

Movie night: On Friday, February 8th, we are once again having a movie night as part of winter carnival. The are showing the movie Rio. We have created a Google Doc for parents to sign up. Please let us know if you did not receive a link to the document. We appreciate your support of this event.
Lev's Passion Project
Spanish News
Sra. Jones
We recently completed a unit on weather in 5th & 6th grade Spanish. Students raced to match Spanish weather expressions to the appropriate pictures. Table groups then played memory with the weather expressions and pictures. 

Ask students to sing you the weather songs we learned in Spanish! Students can find the songs on their Schoology accounts.
Library/Technology News
Simone Pyle
This week, kindergarten and grade 1 looked at books in foreign languages! We saw familiar books that have been published in languages other than English, like Diary of a Wimpy Kid in German and French; Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in Spanish; and a Magic Tree House book in German. We also get to see books published in other alphabets, such as Greek and Cyrillic. I read them Huevos Verdes con Jamón, and they were able to follow along with this familiar story by looking at the pictures.
One Planet News
Kiersten Harlow
One Planet is enjoying the new sliding hill!
Lunch Room News
Gret Hewes
Dinner and a Movie!

The winter carnival is coming! This year we will be offering a take-out dinner on Friday, February 8th, which is also movie night at the gym.  

Visit this link to sign up for a take-out meal (also available on the Newton webpage). We will also be emailing the sign up sheet in the coming weeks.
Farm-to-School News
Alyssa Marzot
Winter Carnival is coming! Farm to School is hosting two fundraisers to support Newton's gardens and taste tests.  

Newton Farm to School will be hosting a fundraiser lunch during Winter Carnival on Saturday, February 9th. We are seeking donations to help us with this fundraiser; there is a Google sheets sign up here. An exciting change to this year is that we will be in Barrett Hall. We greatly appreciate your support.  Please email me if you have any questions.
Nurse's News
Kerri Juergens
HealthHub Clinic will present a 1-hour asthma education program on February 20th at 5:30pm at the Tunbridge Central School for families from Chelsea, Sharon, South Royalton, Strafford, and Sharon.

Dr. Robert Klein, retired pulmonologist, will present a 20-30 minute presentation, followed by a question and answer session. Dr. Klein developed a successful asthma education program for schools in Rhode Island which greatly improved the management of kids' asthma.
PTA News
Shannon Varley
Winter Carnival

Volunteer Deadline: Friday, Feb. 1st
We will likely cancel the parts without volunteers for Winter Carnival 2019--it takes a lot of hands for the day to run the day smoothly and safely, and if we're lacking parent volunteers, we are unable hold the events where we are short on adults (bonfire and ice skating). Younger families--this is the year to sign up for these volunteer slots so that you have an opportunity "to learn the ropes" from the older families that are moving on....specifically, we need someone to take on the bonfire and ice skating that evening. We also need more dinner helpers. 

Activities will take place Friday, Feb. 8th and Saturday, Feb. 9th this year. Here is the link to sign up for Saturday volunteer positions; and another sign up sheet to donate spaghetti dinner supplies, to be dropped off at Barrett Hall day on Sat., Feb. 9th. Younger families, please consider getting involved this year as older families will be moving on.

Any questions or concerns, please contact Shannon (via email at

Winter Carnival Schedule

Friday, Feb. 8th

1:00 - 4:00 Lions Ski Program at the Skiway
4:00 - 5:00 Takeout Dinner - Preorder with Gret
6:30 - end Movie at Gym ( Rio, Rated G, running time 96 min.) - Benefit for Middle School Trip

Saturday, Feb. 9th

10:00 - 12:00 Donuts and Maple Syrup at Strafford Creative Preschool
10:00 - 12:30 Murray Field Activities

      10:00 - 10:45 Obstacle Course
      10:45 - 11:30 Snowshoe Racing
      11:30 - 12:00 Nordic Racing
      12:00 - 12:30 Snow/Ice Sculpture Building & Competition 

12:30- 12:45 Strafford Splash sponsored by Strafford Fire/Rescue - Preschool Parking
12:30 - 2:00 Lunch - Benefit for Farm to School- **Moved Indoors to Barrett Hall** 
1:45 - 4:00 Harrington Hill Activities 

      1:45 - 2:30 Sledding Races
      2:30 - 3:15 Skiing & Snowboarding Races
      3:15 - 4:00 Skiing & Snowboarding Competition
      5:00 Spaghetti Dinner and Awards Ceremony - Barrett Hall
      ($5 Suggested Donation)
      6:30 - 8:30 Bonfire & Ice Skating Under the Lights- Murray Field

Monday, February 4th 
Newton School Library
Upcoming Events
January 21 - No school in observance of Martin Luther King Day

Tumble Times for Tots - Locations vary - read more here