NERD Summit – Kids’ Programming Workshops at UMass, Saturday Sept. 12

NERD Summit at UMass this weekend – includes FREE workshops for kids 7 & up

The NERD (New England Regional Developers) Summit is a three day conference of talks, workshops, coding challenges, and fun with the local tech community!

More details about the conference are available at We are offering a number of workshops for kids and teens at NERD Summit 2015.  The details are here:
Saturday, September 12th
Sunday, September 13th

You can find the full list of workshops on our website. All workshops are free, but space is limited, so please register to let us know you are coming.


The New England Regional Developers, Inc is a registered US 501(c)(3) non-profit whose purpose is to organize, educate and advance the skills of web designers and developers in the New England region. It seeks to do this primarily through nurturing a self-sustaining mentoring community for its local IT industry.

NERDs has identified and defined the major issues facing its community and industry today. The most visible symptom of these issues is the growing talent gap in the field of IT.

NERDs believes that our IT teams are not as strong as they could be due to irrationalities lingering from society’s past. Using proven techniques to achieve better diversity and inclusion in IT, the NERDs project identifies areas of the population that have a harder time making it into IT careers and works to remove those challenges or barriers.

Mary Poppins auditions, Sept. 17, 18, 19, 20

ALSCT’s Mary Poppins The Musical Auditions
Amherst Leisure Services Community Theater is looking for actors and actresses ages 7 and up.
Auditions will be at the Bangs Community Center in Amherst on these dates and times:
  • Thursday, September 17 from 6:00 pm to 9:15 pm
  • Friday, September 18 from 6:00 pm to 9:15 pm
  • Saturday, September 19 from 10:00 am to 12:15 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:15 pm
  • Sunday, September 20 from 10:00 am to 12:15 pm and 2:00 pm to 5:15 pm
Please call 413-259-3065 to schedule an audition and check for more information.

Grief Through Story – Jones Library program for adult caregivers and community members supporting young people

Grief Through Story:
Initiating a Gentle Conversation about Death, Dying, & Grief Using Children’s Literature

Adult caregivers and community members are invited to attend this free workshop to be held at the Jones Library on Tuesday, September 15 at 7 pm.  This program is offered by The Garden:  A Center for Grieving Children and Teens, a program of Cooley-Dickinson VNA & Hospice, which provides support to grieving young people and their families.

Especially aimed at family, friends, and loved ones in the life of a grieving young person, this workshop is for those wanting to learn how to begin a gentle dialog about death, dying, and grief with young people.  This workshop will show adults how to use children’s literature as a tool in talking to children about these difficult topics.

For more information about Grief through Story or to find out more about The Garden, please contact the director, Shelly Bathe Lenn, at 413/ 582-5312.

Free and open to the public.  For more information, please contact Janet Ryan at 413/259-3223.

Child Research at Amherst College!

The Child Learning and Development Lab at Amherst College

Do you have a child between 3 and 5 years of age? Professor Carrie Palmquist, Assistant Professor of Psychology at Amherst College, is conducting a series of studies at the Child Learning and Development Lab that investigate how children learn from others and about the world around them.

Our research is designed to be fun and engaging for your child, while also allowing you to learn more about your child’s development.  Study visits are short, and take place in a comfortable, quiet setting located conveniently on the beautiful campus of Amherst College. We have reserved parking for you and your family.

By participating in one of our 30-minute studies, you and your family will contribute significantly to our knowledge of child development. If you are interested in volunteering for a study, contact the CLAD Lab at 413-542-5652, email

LSSE Kids’ Classes on Art, Astronomy, Tennis and More!

Dear Parents and School Personnel,

At LSSE we’re excited to announce another season of rich programming for children this fall. Carolyn Toomey will teach her beloved fanciful art classes, starting the week of Sept. 21. She has four week-day art classes, as well as a new class on Thursday afternoons in outdoor education for kids’ younger siblings (ages 3-5). For sports, Sunny Meidell offers Youth Tennis Lessons (starting Sept. 19) and April Hart, Horseback Riding and Horsemanship (starting Sept. 17). Finally, the perennial family favorite, Astronomy, returns on Sept. 18. Fascinating fun under the stars for all!

Catalog and Registration at

Bike Rodeo and Open House, 6/1

Learn about Cub Scouts and enjoy a night of fun at the Pack 500 Bike Rodeo. If you wish to participate, bring a bike and a helmet. Cub Scouts is open to boys entering grades K-5.

June 1, from 6:30-7:30pm
Location: Fort River Elementary School
In case of rain, South Congregational Church, next to Monson Library

For more info: email or call 413-658-7267

View flyer: Bike Rodeo Flyer

@Jones: Money Smart Week®, 4/18-25

Libraries have long been advocates for reading and literacy for the people in their communities. Another community need now being addressed by libraries in an annual campaign is financial literacy and money management. Money Smart Week®, a public awareness campaign designed to help consumers better manage their personal finances, will be observed with programs at the Jones Library during the week of April 18-25, 2015.

On Saturday, April 25 at 2:30 pm, learn about identity theft at a workshop called Identity Theft: Prevent & Respond. Learn how to minimize the risk of having your identity stolen by managing personal information wisely and cautiously, and learn what to do if you discover identity theft. This program is co-sponsored by UMassFive College Federal Credit Union. Please register for this workshop at the Reference Desk or by calling 413/259-3096.

On Thursday, April 23 at 10:30 am, there will be a children’s story hour with a special focus on money and saving.

About: Money Smart Week® is a public awareness campaign to promote financial education across all age groups. Launched in 2002 by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, the program is now active in more than 45 states through national partnerships with the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) Cooperative Extension and the American Library Association.

All programs are free and open to the public. For more info, visit:

CARNIVAL: Juntos We Play, 3/26

Olympia Oaks Juntos FlierJuntos We Play is a special outreach program sponsored by the ARPS Family Center and community partners. Parents/guardians who attend are introduced to the services provided at the ARPS Family Center. The Family Center shares tools with adults to build a positive school experience while children engage in activities with their staff and interns.

Games, Food, Brochures, and Craft Table presented by ARPS Family Center.

Date: Thursday, March 26
Time: 4:30pm-6pm
Location: Olympia Oaks Apartment Complex Community Room

For more information, call 413-362-1875

Also attached, ARPS Family Center Winter 2015 Newsletter: ARPS Family Center JanFebr 2015 FINAL

Community Storytelling at Hampshire, 2/16

ONAWUMI JEAN MOSSOnawumi Jean Moss is a storyteller, narrator, keynote speaker, and author. Come join us in celebrating Black History Month, the power of voice, and sharing stories of identity by workshopping personal stories.

Date: February 16
Time: 11:30am-1:00pm (Youth Stories); 11:30am-1:30pm Adult Stories)
Location: Hampshire College, Dakin and Merrill Living Room

This event is free and open to the public. All ages welcome! Food will be provided!


*really* having a PGO meeting on Thursday, Feb 12th, 5:30-7:30

Because the last 4 have been cancelled, here’s a quick notice that there will be a PGO meeting this Thursday, Feb 12th, from 5:30 – 7:30

We will meet in the cafeterias.  Pizza & childcare are available if you can RSVP me (Jasper) at 503-890-3200 or

All are welcome!  Come learn more & get involved & meet others interested in supporting our school.

Informational meeting re: proposed schedule change at middle school for next year – Thurs Jan 8th (7 pm, Library, ARMS) –

Parents of upper elementary school students:  Please be aware that the middle school (ARMS) is proposing a (a pretty large) change in the school day schedule for next year’s 7th and 8th graders.

On Thursday January 8th at 7 PM (Library) the middle school administration will be hosting an information night for the school community at large where they will share their rationale for the proposed schedule change and answer questions.

Information about the proposed schedule change is on the school website:

Here is a link to the rationale for the proposed schedule change:

Here is a visual on the proposed schedule change:

Here is the impact on foreign languages:

Latin and World Language Curriculum Information

A new Middle School schedule is under consideration for implementation in 2015-2016 which will affect the Latin curriculum in the following ways:

-Latin IA will be eliminated from the 7th grade.

-7th graders will take 2 nine week exploratory units, combining either Spanish & French, Latin & French or Latin & Spanish.

-The current two year Latin 1A and 1B sequence will be combined into a one year 8th grade elective.

-8th graders who elect a foreign language course will not be able to take drama, art or dance and vice versa.

NOTE: The current French and Spanish courses will be affected in the same way. Chinese will be eliminated from the middle school curriculum.

Comments about these proposed changes can be directed to the ARMS principal, the superintendent and the school committee.

Math Meeting about the future of the High School Math Curriculum – Wed Dec 17, 2014


The below-listed meeting took place earlier in the week:
Wednesday (12/17) 6:30 – 7:45 ARHS Library

The purpose of this meeting is for parents/guardians to see potential math course sequences (Integrated or Traditional) and course names for grades 9 – 12. Parents/guardians will be asked to provide comments for the ARHS math department.

Parents interested in the math curriculum at the high school level: There will be a math meeting Wed Dec 17th re: new high school curriculum/course sequence, 6:30 at the High School Library.
It’s our understanding that it may be the only opportunity for parents to weigh in on a whole new pathway for ARHS math. The current program is being replaced.

Brief summary of current math curriculum: The current high school math curriculum has 2 main paths (Traditional and Integrated Math; this looks like Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2 vs IMP 1, IMP 2, IMP 3). The plan for the new high school curriculum is to narrow it down to one path (Traditional or Integrated but not both) and pick a curriculum that will teach the common core standards, starting in 2015-2016 for 9th graders (meaning the current 8th graders will be the first to experience the new curriculum).

 ARHS Math Curriculum Review Intivation-2

A little reminder: Come Meet the PGO this Monday Dec 8th (with pizza & childcare provided), 5:30 – 7:30


Because the invite went out on Thankgiving Day, it seems like a good idea to send a little reminder about the following:

Come Meet the Wildwood PGO


  • Date:  Monday, Dec 8th, 5:30-7:30
  • Location:  Wildwood Cafeterias.  One room for the meeting, one room for kids.
  • Agenda:  Learn about the PGO, meet others in the community, find ways to contribute (from tiny to huge)
  • Who:  All are  invited & encouraged to come

Please note:  RSVPs for childcare are required, so the staffing can be planned.  Please RSVP for childcare by Thursday, December 4th.

RSVPs for pizza are also needed.

Please call / txt / email your RSVP either to the PGO directly or to Jasper at the following:
Jasper Lieber

Hope to see you there!

Pizza! Pizza! Cookie Dough! Make some dough for the Sixth Grade Field Trip!

Hillside Pizza FundraiserFlyers and order forms have gone home in backpacks for the Sixth Grade Hillside Pizza FundraiserOrders are due this Friday, April 4 so please fill ’em out and turn ’em in. Hillside Pizza is made with organic ingredients and arrives ready for your freezer so you can bake it fresh anytime. The cookie dough too!
Please support the Sixth Grade and place your orders today. Any questions? Call the office at: 362-1400.

The Eric Carle Museum

For more information visit
The Art of Eric Carle: Feathers, Fins, and FurThrough September 1, 2013
Eric Carle’s love of nature is legendary. To recognize this passion, the Carle organized a selective survey of works exploring his interest in animals. On view will be a host of animals who have populated his books. In addition to finished collages, there will be preliminary works including pencil studies that underscore Carle’s meticulous study of his subject.
Robert R. Zakanitch: A Garden of Ordinary Miracles
May 7 – November 10, 2013
The art from A Garden of Ordinary Miracles will blossom in an exhibition at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts. Award-winning artist Robert Zakanitch celebrates the beauty of all growing things in A Garden of Ordinary Miracles, an alphabetical ode to nature. Packaged as the ultimate gift for adults, gardeners, and the nature-lovers of tomorrow, this garden book is nothing short of a miracle.
Latino Folk Tales: Cuentos Populares-Art by Latino Artists
Through June 9, 2013
Folk tale literature throughout the world encompasses both magic and symbolism, comprising stories of saints, gods, myths, and legends. These repeated and recorded stories transcend various national and cultural boundaries. This remarkable exhibition features sixty-three original works of art from bilingual Latino folk tales published in children’s picture books.  A dozen talented, award-winning artists focus their lively imaginations, distinctive styles, and colorful palettes to bring the stories alive. The illustrations enhance stories collected from many Spanish-speaking regions including Mexico, New Mexico, Puerto Rico, Central and South America.
Tour Development by Smith Kramer Traveling Exhibitions, Kansas City, Missouri.
The Caldecott Medal: 75 Years of Distinguished Illustration
Through June 30, 2013
To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Caldecott Medal, The Carle is mounting a special exhibition of high quality prints, organized by Barbara Elleman, in the Reading Library.
For more information visit
Call for Caterpillars! – ContestThrough May 31, 2013
We invite friends, families, schools, and other organizations throughout the country and abroad to create 3-dimensional caterpillar sculptures out of found materials. Be inspired by Eric Carle’s most beloved character and transform ANY combination of recycled or found materials (plastic, paper, foam, wood, metal, etc.) into a 3-dimensional caterpillar sculpture.
Photographs of the caterpillar sculptures will be displayed at The Carle and on The Carle’s social media websites. Three entries will be chosen at random at the Museum’s Children’s Book Festival on June 8, 2013 and will receive an original doodle by Eric Carle!
Please visit for more information including how to submit your entry.
Luncheon and Conversation with Peter Sís
May 4, 2013
12:00 pm – 1:30 pm
$25 (Limited seating) To register call (413) 658-1126.
Prior to the BERL Lecture there will an informal lunch and conversation with Peter Sís with a special introduction by Dr. Cathryn M. Mercier, Director of the Center for the Study of Children’s Literature, Simmons College. Peter Sís is an internationally-acclaimed illustrator, author, and filmmaker.
2013 Barbara Elleman Research Library Lecture
Walls and Bridges…Books With Wings Presented by Peter Sís
May 4, 2013
2:30 pm – 3:30 pm
Free with Museum Admission (limited seating; first come, first served)
Join us for the annual BERL lecture, a series designed to feature the country’s preeminent scholars, book collectors, researchers, editors, authors, and illustrators in the field of children’s literature.
Book Signing to follow.
Screening of the Film, Graphic Novels! Melbourne! Followed by a Panel Discussion
May 5, 2013
3:00 – 4:15 pm
Free; Museum Admission Extra
In this feature documentary, filmmaker Daniel Hayward and comics maker Bernard Caleo venture into the studios and lives of four Australian cartoonists: Pat Grant, Mandy Ord, Bruce Mutard and Nicki Greenberg. They examine the cartoonists’ lives and work. The film also includes interviews with comic book/graphic novel luminaries Paul Gravett, Dylan Horrocks, Scott McCloud, and Shaun Tan (‘The Arrival’).

4:15 – 4:45 Panel Discussion
Graphic novel scholar N.C. Christopher Couch leads a conversation with Bruce Mutard, one of the featured graphic novelists, and Mira Bartok, NEPR commentator and author of The Memory Palace, about the film and the Australian graphic novel/comics scene.

Special Sundays
Cinco de Mayo
May 5, 2013
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Free with Museum Admission
Join us for a colorful celebration of Mexican heritage with a surprise art activity!
Five-College Musicians at The Carle
Featuring Marjorie Melnick as mezzo-soprano,
Joel Pitchon on violin, and Alissa Leiser on piano

May 5, 2013
1:00 pm
$6.50 (Members $5.50) Museum Admission Extra
Celebrate the Museum’s exhibition, Latino Folk Tales: Cuentos Populares–Art by Latino Artists, with a musical medley of Latin American songs and a special reading of Munro Leaf’s The Story of Ferdinand complete with musical accompaniment.
Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Museum Admissions Desk or by calling (413) 658-1126.
Northampton Community Music Center Family Concert Series
David Grover

May 11, 2013
11:00 am
$6 (cash or check only)
Northampton Community Music Center welcomes David Grover from the Berkshires of Massachusetts, performer for 40+ years. Former lead guitarist for Arlo Guthrie and accomplished musician, David uses his songs to teach children about the important things in life: holidays with family, planet preservation and respecting each other.
Ticket sales begin at 10:30 am; no advanced sales.
Limited seating, early arrival recommended

Sponsored by the Northampton Community Music Center, 93.9 The River, and The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. Proceeds benefit the Northampton Community Music Center Scholarship Fund.
Jon Klassen and Mac Barnett
Visit The Carle

May 11, 2013
2:00 pm
Free with Museum Admission
Come hear this dynamic duo talk about the collaboration that garnered a 2013 Caldecott Honor for Extra Yarn.
Book signing to follow. Limit one book from home/unlimited books from The Carle Bookshop.
Gallery Tour
A Garden of Ordinary Miracles:
Robert R. Zakanitch

May 18, 2013
11:00 am
Free with Museum Admission
Join artist Robert R. Zakanitch as he walks you through his “garden” sharing the miracles he wrought using color, shape, and design.
Book signing to follow.
Playing with Pattern and Design with Artist
Robert R. Zakanitch
 – Art Studio Project
May 18, 2013
1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Free with Museum Admission
Join nationally-exhibited artist and illustrator, Robert R. Zakanitch as he inspires you to create big designs, visual surprises, and pleasing patterns using the shapes of one or more letters in your name.
Book signing to follow.
Gallery Tour
The Caldecott Medal: 75 Years of Distinguished Illustration
May 18, 2013
3:00 pm
Free with Museum Admission
Join Guest Curator and former Book Links editor Barbara Elleman for a tour of this exhibition of high quality prints drawn from more than 30 Caldecott Medal books. Barbara will be joined by special guest, Lawrence Webster who will give a short presentation based on her book, Under the North Light: The Life and Work of Maud and Miska Petersham, artists represented in the exhibition.
Book signing to follow.
Art is a Mind Game with Raúl Colón May 19, 2013
11:00 am
Free with Museum Admission
Book signing to follow.
Information Session 
Simmons College MFA in Writing for Children at The Carle

May 19, 2013
12:00 – 1:30 pm
Simmons College and The Carle are delighted to announce the expansion of our partnership offering graduate programs in children’s literature at The Carle to include: the continuation of the MFA in Writing for Children program, a new MA in Children’s Literature, and a new joint degree combining the MFA/MA degree programs. Attend an informational session at the Museum to learn about the programs, how to apply, and meet representatives from Simmons and the Museum.
To register and for more information please contact Megan Lambert, Instructor at The Center for the Study of Children’s Literature, Simmons College at
The Children’s Chorus of Springfield
May 19, 2013
3:00 pm
Free with Museum Admission.
From Found Materials to Flowers! – Art Studio Project
May 22 – June 18, 2013
Free with Museum Admission
Using an assortment of plastic, wood, fabric, paper, and other found materials fashion a 3-dimensional garden.
¡Bailamos! A Bilingual Dance Party with Mister G
May 25, 2013
11:00 am and 1:00 pm
$6 per ticket
Parents’ Choice Gold Award-winning international children’s music artist, Mister G, performs songs from his new bilingual album Chocolalala, named one of the best CDs of the year by The Washington Post. 
Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Museum Admissions Desk or by calling (413) 658-1126.
Sandy Soderberg
Marketing Manager
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art
125 West Bay Road
Amherst, MA  01002

Wildwood Book Closet Volunteer!

The Wildwood Book Closet needs 3-4 volunteers to help with re-shelving of books throughout the school year.  This internal library is a teacher resource, arranged by reading level.  Typically volunteers stop by the closet once a week for 10-20 minutes at a time, to help keep this important resource organized.

Please contact Kristin at if you can help.  

2nd Annual African American Achievement Night

You are cordially invited to attend the 2nd Annual African American Achievement Night.  
This much anticipated community celebration is scheduled for May 8 at 6:30pm in the Amherst Regional High School Auditorium (21 Mattoon Street).
District administrators, faculty, staff, students, families and community members will gather to celebrate the academic, extracurricular, musical, athletic, and community service accomplishments of students in grades K-12.  Music, dance and spoken word performances will enhance the event.
We look forward to seeing you at this wonderful community event.
Thanks and enjoy your day!

TONIGHT: Julie Rivera Invites You To An Art Opening

Wildwood art teacher Julie Rivera invites you to an art exhibition opening this Friday, April 5th (reception 5 to 7 PM) at the Oxbow Gallery, on Pleasant Street in Northampton. The three person exhibition, called Direction: Home is a collaboration with two other area artists/art teachers, Diane Travis and BZ Reily. Families are most welcome!
Another reception will take place during Northampton’s Arts Night Out, on Friday, April 12th.

PGO Mini Grants Announced

$60.19 for ELL team for (2) sets of simple dictionaries, in which kids can write and create their own dictionaries

$139.19 for Marjory Ackerman: T-stool & Howdahug seat that will allow students to “move” in class while listening to instruction

$73.50 for Ricci Mastroianni for a science observation tool called a Half Loope Set