December Newsletter

December 5, 2018 

 Dear Rowe School Families,

As we enter the busy holiday season, the pace at Rowe School continues to match stride. We had our November Community Meeting hosted by Mrs. Elder’s and Mrs. Lemay’s kindergarten classes on Monday, November 26th. The meeting was originally planned for the day before Thanksgiving break but was postponed due to the snow day. Mrs. Elder dressed as Mrs. Turkey Bird and led delighted students and staff in the infamous Mrs. Turkey Bird song. Students shared with one another what they are thankful for and watched a short video of many Rowe staff members expressing their gratitude. We also tallied the number of items collected for our annual food drive to benefit the YCS Food Pantry (approximately 501) and Mrs. Webber, our nurse, had to guess the correct number of items with enthusiastic coaching from the audience. We had fun combining our math skills with this gathering that celebrated our kindness and generosity.

Our December Community Meeting will focus on Holidays of Light. Here is a list of the holidays that will be mentioned. Please let us know if there are holidays that your family celebrates that aren’t listed. We would be happy to include them.

●  St. Nicholas Day, December 6, 2018

●  St. Lucia’s Day, December 13, 2018

●  Hanukkah, December 2 – 20, 2018

●  Winter Solstice, December 21, 2018

●  Christmas, December 25, 2018

●  Kwanzaa, December 26, 2018 to January 1, 2019

●  Luminarias (a small paper lantern: Southwestern United States)

Please also note that we will continue our annual tradition of holding a school-wide Pajama Day on Friday, December 21st. This is the last day before the holiday break and it is really fun for the adults as well as the children! Students are allowed to bring one stuffed animal that will fit in his or her backpack.

Literacy tip: Reading aloud to children

Why Read Aloud? Imagine if every day we tell our children to play outside. We say: It’s fun! It’s good exercise! It develops your imagination and appreciation of nature! But we never go outside. Will they play outside? A few adventurous kids might head out and find great pleasure there, but most kids will learn from our actions instead.

Reading aloud has a similar effect. In neuroscience, the research indicates that “what fires together wires together.” In terms of reading, if the neurons in the reading parts of the brain fire at the same time as the pleasure parts, reading becomes associated with pleasure—and craved like pleasure. So how does this work? First, reading aloud models to our children that reading is pleasurable. When we snuggle up to read, children receive undivided attention, physical affection and shared experiences. In their brains, reading books is connected with positive feelings that they will want to return to again and again.

Also, while most parents know reading to children who aren’t yet able to read matters, reading to beginning and older readers is just as important. As children learn to read, their reading level is often well below their listening level until about the 8th grade. For some children, the excitement of learning to read is enough to keep them motivated, but for many, particularly those for whom reading is frustrating, reading aloud through this transition provides a positive experience with books and gives them something to look forward to as readers. Happy reading!

*Adapted from The Read Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease.

Cold weather gear reminder

In preparation for dressing for the cold weather outside, we ask that if the temperature, including wind chill, is predicted to be below 30 degrees, all children come to school with a hat and mittens/gloves and a warm coat. Children should also have winter boots and snow pants for the playground, especially when there is snow on the ground. Children without boots and snow pants will need to stay on the paved areas of the playground during recess. In addition, if families find themselves with extra mittens, gloves, or boots, and would be interested in donating to the Rowe School "lending library of winter wear" in the office, we would gladly welcome any donations.

It seems we are always especially running low on mittens and gloves to lend out to children who may have forgotten theirs. Many thanks!

Lost and Found

Our Lost and Found items seem to pile up very quickly. Please label your child’s gear with their name whenever possible. This allows us to quickly return items to their owners. Every 6 to 8 weeks, we donate the unclaimed clothing to local organizations such as Goodwill. Please remind your child to check the Lost and Found in our Atrium on a regular basis. Marking your child’s water bottle with his or her name is helpful, as well, because those also frequently end up on the Lost and Found table. Thank you!

Clipper Care

If your child goes to Clipper Care, please go directly to the portable to pick up. We ask that families not come in through the building because the door from the building to the ramp will lock and we are not allowed to prop doors open for security reasons. Thanks for your cooperation!

Dates to note:

Thursday, December 20th 4:00 PTO meeting in the YES library

Friday, December 21st-School-wide Pajama Day

Monday, December 24, 2018 - Tuesday, January 1, 2019 - Holiday break- No School 

We return to school on Wednesday, January 2, 2019! 

Monday, January 21st - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr holiday- No School

We are pleased to announce that we recently received two grants from the Yarmouth Education Foundation. We are very grateful for the support we receive from YEF to help us continue our efforts in expanding innovative practices with the children at Rowe. Please read on for the details of what was funded. A huge thanks also go out to the staff who wrote the grants. Without their efforts, we would not have received the funding.

Message from the Yarmouth Education Foundation

The Yarmouth Education Foundation is pleased to announce it awarded 13 grants across the district worth a total of more than $24,000 this fall cycle. YEF holds two grant cycles each year. Rowe School received two exciting grants!

Kindergarten Light Lab Kits -Deborah Landry, Science Consultant with Laura Elder and Karen Bradford

Every kindergarten student in Yarmouth will become a scientist and have the opportunity to explore and study light in an exciting way. This grant will provide a light lab kit to all seven of our kindergarten classrooms. The kit will include lenses, prisms, and a colored light ray box. They will use mirrors and flashlights too. Students will discover light is needed to see objects in the dark, light can travel through and also bounce off certain objects, light can bend, it has many colors, and light also has energy. This will be an innovative science unit for our youngest learners every spring.

Growing Our Brains -Lorissa Lemay with Karen Bradford

Kindergarten students are learning about Growth Mindset, and the importance of working hard to solve challenges, working as a team, being kind, and never giving up. This grant will create “grow your brain” stations in every kindergarten classroom. These stations will include special Lego machine kits and beginner robot kits and accessories. Young students often learn best through play, and they will use these tools and toys to solve problems, work as a team, build social skills, and have fun. It will help them better understand the concept of Growth Mindset.


If you would like to support the Yarmouth Education Foundation mission, you can give the gift of education! The YEF Clipper Honors program is back. If you are looking for a holiday gift for a Yarmouth School Department employee, please consider Clipper Honors. If you make a $25 donation or more to YEF in honor of an employee, they will receive a special YEF certificate of appreciation, a personalized note from your family, and cookies from Cookies Direct of Yarmouth. The ordering deadline is Thursday, December 13. YEF volunteers will deliver gifts on Monday, December 17. These can be given to teachers, administrators, support staff, nutrition workers, bus drivers, and more. You can order online at the YEF website:www.yarmoutheducationfoundatio... - thank you!

News From the PTO

Parents and Guardians, A continued, heartfelt thank you for supporting a lengthy list of enrichment! Hannaford Gift Cards - Next load date is Wed, Dec 19 at noon.

Close Buy Merchandise Distribution – Merchandise is in! Please pick up at the Rowe School library, Dec 12-13, 3:30-6:00 pm. If you are unable to pick up at these times, please email us at

Otto’s Friends & Family Fundraiser - HMS students and families, join us for a fun evening at Otto's on Tuesday, December 11, 4-7pm. Pizza for sale to benefit the PTO. Non-HMS families, what a great reason to not cook – to-go pizzas also benefit the PTO!

“Maine Girls” Save the Date - Join us Jan 15 at 6 pm in the Yarmouth public library for a free screening of “Maine Girls.” This 30-min documentary follows a group of immigrant and US-born teenage girls as they face the unfamiliar and bridge divides. A Q&A session follows led by 4 local leaders working in related fields. If you’re bringing children, we recommend middle school age and up, but please view the trailer to decide what’s best for your child.

Box Tops - Thank you for your continued clipping! PTO Meeting - Please join us on December 20th at 4 pm in the YES library.

Giving - Please contact us if you’d like to work with us! If you’d like to give a donation, please write a check to Yarmouth K-8 PTO and send it to PO Box 262 in Yarmouth.

Thank you again for your support! 

Christy Hayashida and Heather Meier Yarmouth K-8 PTO Co-Presidents

We wish you all a joyous and peaceful holiday season! 

Susan Lobel, Principal & the Rowe School staff