Happy Easter!
e-RPDS                                                                                              4/13/2017
Letter from the Rector
Dear Parish Day School families,
The children at PDS have leapt into Spring, putting a long wet Winter to bed, happily trading fleece jackets and boots for t-shirts and running shoes.  It's time to run and dig and hide and seek, to play fetch with the dog and Pooh sticks with a friend.  The weather and the landscape feel new again, finally, and (ready or not) the kids' spirits match the rebirth they sense around them.  Relationships that were strained last December seem more promising now, if only because staying stuck doesn't feel like a viable option.  The opportunity to change for the better presents itself all around, if we have eyes to see it.
The shift from Good Friday to Easter mirrors this longing to find something new and growing where before it seemed there was only loss or dead wood.  The human spirit is made to rise, I believe, to see possibility and promise, to mend instead of settling for being broken.  Poet Kelley Leigh says it this way: "At the end of a dark cold season, the silent roar of resurrection always overcomes.  Always," (Holy Week) which reminds me of a family I knew years ago in Delaware.
"Why should I believe in God," was one of the questions my friend Lauren asked in our first conversation.  She called from out of the blue, and after giving me a few names of people we knew in common, she cut to the chase.  "You don't know me, and I don't know about God, but I just got a very scary diagnosis, and I need help talking to my children.  Will you come see us?"
Her boys were 5 and 3 when I met them, so we spent a lot of time on the floor together, lying on our stomachs lining up cars and crayons and cotton balls, drawing pictures and making memory boxes.  The five-year-old wanted to make sure that his mom didn't forget the things he liked after she died (we talked openly about her health and their love), so he packed a memory box for her to take with her, and she made one for each of the boys.
Lauren was a scientist, a geologist, and we explored the metaphor of digging quite a lot.  One day while her three-year-old was busy with a shovel in the sandbox, Lauren imagined digging into her body as a way to experience healing.  She talked about the layers of healthy cells and layers of cancerous cells, comparing them to layers of rock laid down over ages in the earth's crust.  And she spoke of piling up cancerous cells behind her like the piles of sifted dirt at an archeological dig, as an explorer combs through the trash, always hoping to be surprised by an unexpected treasure.
Lauren found the peace she longed for in our year-long conversation, and in some sense she got it by surprise, combing through the rubble of her everyday life, which stretched six months longer than the doctors expected.  Ever the scientist, she embraced her questions of God and life and dying, and let go of looking for any easy answers.  "There are none," she said, "but the questions themselves are rich and life-giving."
To address her original question about what to say to her sons, I took my cues from them.  At some point during each of our visits, one or both of the boys would crawl into Lauren's lap, sometimes just for a minute to rest or regroup.  Even when her legs no longer worked well and we had to lift her out of her chair, Lauren agreed to be home base for a game of tag at a neighbor's birthday party, and the kids climbed on her like puppies.  So when they asked me about her dying and where God was, I told the whole family about God as a big, loving mother, and that dying was like sitting in God's lap and being held there forever.  "That's where your mom will be, resting in a love that goes on and on, wrapped in an embrace that adds up all the love that ever was or will be, and we can feel it, too, when we hang onto each other."  Even though your mom will soon pass away, I told the boys, Love never dies.
Those young fellows are now men-clear-eyed and courageous and kind-and their mother would be so proud of them.  They often told me about how much they learned from her: "When she was dying, she taught us about life," one said, and I learned a lot from them.  The Easter story that we will celebrate at Redeemer this weekend is rooted in their wisdom: no matter what our losses are, God is always pulling us into Life. 
If you don't already have a faith community, or if you're looking for something new, I hope you will join us this Sunday for Easter: 7:30 in the chapel, 9:00 in the church, Easter egg hunt following on the playground, or 11:00 in the church.  Our children's choirs will be singing at both services, but the little folks will be featured at 9:00.  Whenever you come, the community will be richer for your presence.
David, rector of the Church of the Redeemer 

Classroom Updates:

Mrs. Arrup and Mrs. Yanega's 2s:
Spring weather has finally arrived and with it came the Mobile Zoo.  The boys and girls were so excited to meet Winnie the penguin, see the snake and actually pet the chinchilla! In the classroom we are continuing to talk about the color purple, ovals and insects.  We made an oval Easter Bunny and searched the for oval Easter eggs in the Church courtyard. After our egg hunt, we enjoyed a special snack of bunny rice crispy treats and purple Peeps.   It is never a dull moment in the Two's!  Mrs. Yanega and I can't believe May is right around the corner, where has the time gone?  During the month of May we will focus on the color yellow, diamonds and talk a little about ocean life to gear up for summer.  Have a wonderful Easter with your families and we will see you next Tuesday!

Mrs. Wyatt and Mrs. Zuidema's 2s: 
The Twos are jumping into spring with a very busy April. We are concentrating on spring, insects, purple and ovals. Last week we had a visit from the zoo. We were able to see and learn about a penguin, a snake, and a chinchilla. We were even able to pet the chinchilla! We celebrated opening day for the Orioles with a "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" craft, and our cubbies are covered with dragonflies and butterflies in honor of the season. This week we made bunny bags to collect eggs during our egg hunt, and we made oval bunnies with bright cottontails to help us remember our shape of the month. Next week will be dedicated to Earth Day. We will be working with all of the different age groups on projects and activities that celebrate the planet earth. As always, thank you for sharing your children with us.

Mrs. Hooper and Mrs. Grieve's 3s:
The 3 Day 3's have been busy bouncing bunnies in the last two weeks!  The children water colored OVAL Easter eggs (our shape of the month) and painted Billy Bunny!  "Charlie Chick" was a favorite as he pops out of his marble painted shell! Yesterday, we made "Bunny Bags" which they filled today with the eggs they found on their Easter Egg Hunt!  Thank you to our party Mom's for a fun and festive day!  We have enjoyed many Easter stories in the past two weeks , with P.J. Funnybunny being one of our favorite characters!  Next week, we will celebrate Earth Week as an entire school with many activities planned.  We will also be talking about SPRING as  many colorful flowers are created. The children are doing a great job with their letter recognition and we are also working on the sounds that  many of the letters make.  Humpty Dumpty is appropriately our April nursery rhyme with his oval shape!  This will be the final page to our year long nursery rhyme book; so these wonderful creations will be coming home soon!  Hope to see you all at the Trike Ride next Friday.  Have a wonderful Easter with your Sweet Little Bunnies!!

Mrs. Schroeder and Miss Ball's 3s:
The five day threes are loving the spring warm weather. They love getting a little extra outside time. We are finishing up our community helpers unit. Keep a lookout for a special surprise coming! We are starting our spring flowers unit. We have painted daffodils, made q tip pussywillows and tissue paper forsythia. We are using all different types of fine motor skills on them. Our April poem is Humpty Dumpty. We have been talking about the origin of the poem. Ask your kids what it might really be about. We are working on black and white and the shape of oval. We are also getting ready for our Easter egg hunt and are very excited. Thanks party parents!
We have finished talking about the alphabet and are introducing numbers. We have talked about 1, 2 and 3. The class loves to talk about math and patterns. Have a great long weekend!

Mrs. Faint and Mrs. Baker's Pre-k:
Wow, W is always a fun week and nature cooperated with a week of wacky weather! We read about different kinds of weather, including thunderstorms, and continue to graph our weather daily. It was warm enough to fill a big bin with ice to play/experiment with ice and water. Some children were truly puzzled that the ice would not make the water wheel spin - only water worked for that. Some children enjoyed digging in a bin of dirt for worms to hold and observe while others chose to stay far away from that activity! This week, with X, is not quite as fun but we have made up for it with Easter crafts. Our bunnies and eggs are proudly displayed in our room. We continue to try to provide a variety of pre school experiences while working on the crafts where children need to follow directions while at the same time be creative and develop their motor skills. Knowing how much glue to use and where to put it is not as easy as it appears!  This is the time of year when our huge playground and campus are so fun. Every day something is budding, blooming, sprouting, changing color, dropping to the ground or flying through the air! So many things to see, hear, smell and touch as the children explore their world.  Enjoy the long Easter weekend with your family.

Mrs. Loeb and Miss Sciuto's Pre-k:
We have been so busy lately that "X" week is proving to be a little restful! We had an extra special snack on Tuesday; we ate outside! The weather has been delightful, but we've needed extra drinks and suntan lotion. The girls are certainly looking forward to the Easter Egg hunt on Thursday, and the special treats that come with it. Thank you to Shanti DiMucci, Bree Morrison, Jenn Joh, and Anne Mattia for all their help! We've made our baskets, and little bunny masks, so we are ready for the fun of Easter! Next week we are looking forward to Earth Week and the Trike Ride.  The girls have been learning about bike safety in Values, and we had someone come in and read a book in Chapel about a little girl with a "bad sickness" and how determined she was to get better and help others. So thank you to all for participating in the Trike Ride! Enjoy Easter Break and all this beautiful weather!

Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Vandenberg's Kindergartens:
Can you believe we have only about 40 days left in this school year? We are so proud of the progress that the kindergarteners have made so far this year. We are seeing them taking more risks with writing on their own, and they are understanding and writing beginning, middle, and end in story creations. We are also working on story elements such as setting, character, and plot in creative writing.In language arts, we continue to practice reading stories together out loud, and on consonant blends, word families, long and short vowels, and sight words. In math, we are continuing the study of the meaning of the +, -, and = symbols. We are using these symbols to solve simple addition and subtraction problems.This time of year tends to get a bit muddy outside. Please check to make sure that your child has an additional change of clothes in case of a mud mess. Mark your calendars for our publishing party on May 19 at 9:15 - we hope to see you all there! We are still in need of paper towel rolls if you could please continue to send those in. Thank you!

Mrs. Barta's Pre-first:
Happy Spring! Pre-first has been busy learning about story details. We know stories have a main character, setting and plot. They also have a beginning, middle and an end to a story. We are putting these elements into our own writing. I have been so impressed with the student's writing as well as the details added to each story. Seeing the progression from the beginning of the year until now is truly amazing. In social studies, we have begun learning about our country that we live in and exactly what "Me on the Map" means. We will be using maps, studying U.S. symbols, landmarks and learning about different cities, capitals and states. The Pre-first children are extremely excited about our "POSTCARD CHALLENGE." We wrote letters to friends and family that need your help being mailed. We hope to receive postcards from all 50
states!!! Wish us luck!!!

Lunch Bunch:
L unch Bunch is hopping this week! We have made bunny ears and many festive Easter crafts over the last few weeks. We are ready for the warmer spring weather and all it has to offer. As the weather becomes warm and beautiful Lunch Bunch will spend extra time outside. A few reminders: Please remember to put sunscreen on your children in the morning, make sure to pack extra clothing for your child for the changing weather and LABEL, LABEL, LABEL! Lunch bunch is anticipating Earth Week when we get back after Easter. We have activities planned for the week to get the children thinking about being stewards of our planet. We will be working with the children to remember not to pick the flowers on the playground, stay out of the mud, and pick up any trash that they find. Thank you all for all of your help! Have a lovely Easter! 

Program Highlights:
Maryland Zoo Visits the 2s
Our 2s classes and their parents were visited by some special friends from the Maryland Zoo. The children were excited to see the Black-footed African Penguin, a chinchilla and a snake!

Pre-k Field Trip to Goucher College
Our pre-k classes, along with their teachers and chaperones, took a fun-filled bus ride to Goucher College to see a live show of the "Rainbow Fish". Having just spent time talking and learning about the valuable lessons from this cherished children's story during Friendship Week made it all the more memorable.

Pre-first and Kindergarten 
Visit the Maryland Zoo 
Our kindergarten and pre-first classes spent a beautiful morning visiting all the animals and creatures at the zoo. They also enjoyed a picnic lunch and wonderful time with friends. Thank you to our teachers and chaperones for making the day so special!

Office Notes

Friday, April 14 and Monday, April 17 - No School
Easter Break

Friday, April 21 Trike Ride Charity Fundraiser
To benefit Hopkins Pediatric Oncology
3s, Pre-k, Kindergarten and Pre-first classes

Friday, April 28 Faculty Meeting
11:45 Dismissal - no afternoon programs

PD S Auction
A very special thank you to our auction committee, their many volunteers and everyone who supported and attended this year's auction. In addition to raising over $11,000 to help pay for new classroom cabinets, it was a wonderful gathering of the very special PDS community.

Our garden is full of beautiful student grown cilantro. Please feel free to come by with your child to grab some.

Enrollment Availability
We still have a few remaining spots in some of our classes for next year. If you know of someone who may be interested, please have them contact the school office or email Katie Poe to set up an appointment.



Spring Has Sprung 2017!

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The Church of the Redeemer


Community News

Play & Grow Summer Camp at Redeemer

Registration has opened for Play & Grow Summer Camp! 

Click here to register.

Children at Redeemer 
on Easter
Families with children are invited to join us at our 9:00 a.m. service on Easter Sunday and in the Parish Hall after the service where the Easter Bunny will lead us out to the playgrounds for our annual Easter Egg Hunt, open to children of all ages. Please bring your own baskets or bags. Please note: This is a different location than in recent years.  There will be a specially designated place for children 5 and under.
Walk Through Holy Week
Designed for children ages 4-10 , but appealing to anyone who learns best through stories, this is an experiential retelling of the sacred story of the last days of Jesus' life, his crucifixion, burial and resurrection.  A leader guides a progression through an interactive telling of this holy story beginning at the Triumphal Procession into Jerusalem and including stops at the Last Supper, the Garden of Gethsemane, Peter's denial, the Governor's palace, the carrying of the cross to Golgotha and the tomb. 
Adults looking for a way to help a child understand more about the meaning of Easter are asked to accompany the child on this special journey.
We will begin at 11:00 a.m. on Good Friday in the chapel ; we hope that you will be able to join us.

Parenting Seminar

Click here to register. 

Contact Us
Redeemer Parish Day School
5603 N. Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21210

Mary Knott, Director