Thursday, August 9, 2018

Preparing for the New School Year

As you can see from the photos below, our custodians have been busy stripping and waxing floors so the school building will be clean and shiny for opening day. Office staff have been ordering supplies, setting up schedules, and preparing class lists. We have also been attending trainings and working on transitioning to a new database system (Tyler) that has many great features. This month, the District will be launching a more updated website which will connect to all our social media including blogs and email blasts. 
This year, Green Meadow students will have several new specials along with Art, Music, Physical Education, and Library. K-3 students will participate in Foreign Language (Spanish), Computer Science, and Wellness classes. Welcome back letters, with information regarding classroom placements/homeroom teacher, will be mailed home the week of 8/13/18. Below are some important dates to keep in mind:

  • Meet and Greet for Grade K-3 Families- Tuesday, August 28th, 2:00-2:30pm
  • First Day of School for gr. 1-3- Wednesday, August 29th, 8:30am-2:50pm
  • First Day of Kindergarten- (Last name determines which date students attend: A-M on August 29th and N-Z on August 30th)
  • Meet & Greet for Preschool Families- Wednesday, August 29th (Classroom visits~ Baudin 9-10am; Mooradian 9:30-10:30am; Viros 9:30-10:30am; Vasta 10:30-11:30)
  • First Day of Preschool- Thursday, August 30th 
  • No School 8/31 & 9/3- Labor Day Weekend 
  • PTO Family Picnic at Crowe Park- September 7th, 6:00-7:30pm
  • Back to School Night for Parents- September 27th, 6:30-8:00pm
Link to the 2018-19 school calendar:

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

School Council Parent Survey

I would like to express my appreciation to the 2017-2018 Green Meadow School Council for helping to create a parent survey. It was sent out via email to families on June 19th. The survey should take less than 10 minutes to complete. The data will help provide feedback to better understand parents' perceptions and opinions. If you did not receive the survey, feel free to access it at this link:
Green Meadow Parent Survey

By law, every school in Massachusetts must create a "School Council" consisting of an equal number of parent and teacher representatives, and one community member. The council's key responsibilities are to assist the principal in: identifying the needs of students attending the school, adopting educational goals, formulating a school improvement plan, and reviewing the annual school building budget.

Green Meadow will have several openings for parent representatives on the council next year. At the start of the school year, we will send out a notice seeking volunteers. (If there are more volunteers than openings, the PTO will be asked to assist in holding an election). The council meets approximately one evening. For more information contact Principal Shea or visit the: DOE Advisory on School Councils

Friday, June 8, 2018

Congratulations Class of 2018

The Maynard School District has a wonderful tradition of inviting the graduating seniors to march in their graduation gowns through the middle school and elementary school as younger students and former staff members cheer and congratulate them. On Thursday, June 7th, there were many teary eyed teachers smiling proudly as their former students strolled through the Green Meadow hallways one last time.

Officer Phil Safety Education

Officer Phil Safety Program

On June 8th, students in grades k-3 attended a safety presentation with 'Mr. Michael' and his puppet friends 'Officer Phil' and 'Cosmo'. The educational show incorporated magic, music, and puppetry. The safety tips highlighted included: memorizing your address & phone number, 'stay low & go' if a smoke detector goes off, wear seatbelts, do not take rides from strangers, always wear a bicycle helmet, and many more.

Students also received a coloring book full of Officer Phil safety tips. They were encouraged to show the book to their families and share the safety tips they learned from the presentation. Maynard police officers, Trista Manchuso and Chris Silva also joined us for the presentation.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Countdown to June 21st

This bulletin board in the second grade hallway displays the number of remaining school days for the year. The last day, June 21st, is an early release (11:45am).

One of Ms. Holly's students created the "Choose Kind" sign in the center of the board. She told me she recycled flowers from a broken lei- very creative!

Thursday, May 31, 2018


It seems there are always new crazes popping up among youth. As parents, it is hard to stay abreast of the latest trend, yet, very important that we do in order to provide guidance and education to help them cope with peer pressure.

Today, I learned of a new e-cigarette that is sweeping across the country. The small size of the "Juul" product, and sweet flavors, make it very appealing to teenagers. Early research suggest it is highly addictive. If you have middle school or high school aged children, you may want to check out this article:  what-parents-need-to-know-about-juuling

Positive Change

 Thank you to the James family for sharing these time line photos. As you can see, today many more families are biking to school. Where there once was no bike stand, a dozen bikes can be found.

Biking to school is a great way to get fresh air and exercize!

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Tick Tips inspired by a 2nd Grader

I received a beautifully handwritten letter from a second grade student. She noticed there have been a lot of ticks appearing this year and wanted to raise awareness of ways to address the problem. Most people think of ticks in the woods, but it is equally likely they will appear in grass. "Ticks like to live in areas where there is tall grass because of the shade and moisture."  Mice, squirrels, chipmunks and other rodents can easily spread ticks beyond tree lines. Just after reading her letter, I went outside during recess and noticed a group of children gathered outside the designated play area. Apparently, a frog had captured their attention and led them toward a spot of long grass. We do not want to limit children from enjoying these special moments in nature. However, it is important to take precautions and make tick checks a regular routine.

Because the risk of catching lyme and other diseases increases dramatically after 24 hours, removing ticks quickly is essential. Make tick checks part of your nightly routine... when bathing or brushing teeth, also check for ticks. If you suspect a tick has been attached for an extended time, or a round red mark becomes visible, consult a medical provider. The video below was found on the Lyme Disease Association website, it was produced by the University of Manitoba.
I have inquired about spraying the grounds for ticks, but due to strict mandates regarding chemical use near public schools, it was not recommended. However, I would like to share a simple DIY home remedy I just became aware of..."Tic Tubes." It may be worth doing your own research to find out if buying, or making them, would be good for your own personal use -just be sure to keep them safely away from young children and pets. The links below are good resources for additional information about ticks:

    Lyme Disease Association:

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

MEF Teacher Tributes & Grants

Ms. Wallace & Ms. Krasinski displaying StoryMarkers

Thanks to community support, the Maynard Educational Foundation donated $28,000 in grants to our schools during the 2017-2018 school year!

At their recent 'Spring Celebration of Teaching & Learning' recepients had a chance to share how the grants enriched their classrooms. For Green Meadow, grants helped purchase story markers for kindergarten, sensory stools for a first grade classroom, and robot STEM kits for a third grade classroom. Please check out the MEF website for more information on this wonderful grant program:

The 'Teacher Tribute Program' offers an opportunity to make a donation to MEF in honor of a Maynard teacher. Deadline June 11, 2018. For more details and an online form, please visit:  MEF Teacher Tribute

Friday, May 25, 2018

Kudos to the PTO!

The rainy weather turned out to be a blessing,  the PTO moved the Annual Tiger Trot indoors and it resulted in the highest attendance so far. The funds raised exceeded all expectations! Thank you to the families and volunteers who made this possible. The funds will go directly to enriching your childrens’ school experience. 

Warm Weather Tips

- If you would like your child to wear suncreen or insect repellant, please apply it at home. (Nursing staff are not allowed to apply without written parental permission and a medication order from a doctor).

- Children are welcome to bring hats or sunglasses for recess, if they wish. 

- Sneakers are more fun for recess since they allow traction for climbing and running. Sandals fly off when on the swings and do not protect toes from the mulch under the play structure.

- Little shorts under dresses are recommended for girls who enjoy cartwheels and active play. 

- Please continue to do nightly tic checks, as the little pests seem to be numerous this year!

- Even though the days are warming up, the building can be cool in the morning. Dressing in layers is helpful.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Rising Fourth Grade Orientation

On Tuesday, June 5th,  from 6pm-7pm third grade parents are invited to an evening orientation at the Fowler Assembly Hall. This will be a great opportunity to meet Fowler staff members and learn more about the fourth grade program.

"Up Day"- Rising fourth grade students will have an opportunity to visit the Fowler School with their classmates on June 14th or 15th. Each 3rd grade classroom will have a special time to tour the building while school is in session, receive information,  and ask questions.

Friday, May 18, 2018

SEPAC Ice Cream Social

The Maynard SEPAC invites Maynard special education students, parents and siblings to an annual Spring Ice Cream Social onTuesday, June 5th from 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm at the Fowler School Cafeteria. 

There will be lots of crafts, activities, and fun for the whole family! (Plus ice cream!) This event is free and open to the whole family for students receiving special education services in Maynard. 

Please contact Karen Heath with any questions or to RSVP at sepacoutreach@ or 978-394-6183.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Parent Coffee

On Tuesday, May 15, 2018, parents are invited to a 'Coffee Chat' from 8:45am- 10am at Green Meadows. Terri Morrison, Title One Math Coach, and Justine Spedded, Literacy Coach, will provide tips and strategies to help children continue learning over the summer.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Protect Toes

We recommend students wear sneakers for recess so they can climb and run safely. Students have found sandals fly off on the spinner/swing and do not protect the toes from the mulch under the structure.

Fun Family Event

May 19th 2018 Tiger Trot

Annual Tiger Trot 

The Green Meadow PTO will be hosting a fun, family event on Saturday, May 19th, 1:00pm-3:00pm, at the H.S. Alumni Field. For more details visit the PTO website: 

The Tiger Trot silent auction is open online until May 17th. To view auction items visit: 

Hearing & Vision

Our school nurse has been performing hearing and vision screenings for students in grades K-3 . Parents will receive letters if any concerns are picked up. As a parent, I truly value this annual screening. When my own children were little, their school nurse discovered one of my daughters needed glasses, and the other had hearing loss which was rectified with tubes. When such issues come on gradually it is easy to miss them. Thank you Ms. Souleotis!

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Celebrating Kindness

On Friday, March 30th, we celebrated 'Kindness Day' at Green Meadow School.  Thanks to our PTO, every child received a pencil with a special message. Throughout the day, students and staff members participated in activities to promote kindness and were encouraged to wear either a 'Choose Kind' teeshirt or a special kindness logo.

These students in Ms. Lawton's classroom made signs for local police and firefighters to thank them for their service to the community. Many staff members received thoughtful cards and posters from students. For example, Mr. Mehigan's class presented an "Unsung Hereos" poster and handmade cards to our custodians. Ms. Holly's class made special posters to honor our secretary and cafeteria staff. A third grade boy even surprised me with a homemade card that included a detailed drawing of our school.

TIC Alert

Check your children for tics daily!

Our school nurse, Kathy Souleotis, took this tic off a student early one morning. The boy most likely picked it up on his way to school. He felt something crawling around in his hair, and asked her to check.

Ms. Souleotis informed me she has removed a high number of tics the past two weeks. Please make it a nightly routine to check your children thoroughly. Even if they have not been playing in the woods, these pests might find a way to hitch a ride.

Bus Registration Now Open

Green Meadow Families who live within 2 miles, and wish to have their children take the bus for the 2018-2019 school year, should sign up now as space is limited.

Follow the link below for registration forms, fee information, waivers for free/reduced lunch, and mileage criteria. (The Bus Registration page can also be accessed via the  'For Families' tab off our main website).

Bus Registration Information

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Safety Precautions

 Designated Zone for Unloading Passengers

Buses and Vans Only

Staff person on duty from 8:15am-8:30am

A number of parents have voiced concerns about vehicles parking illegally, or driving unsafely, at arrival and dismissal time. There have been fender benders and near misses in both lots. Parents requested I blog about the expected routines, and urge everyone to proceed with caution.

We have a very small parking lot for employees. Since they start arriving at 7:30am, please do not park your vehicle in the lot after this time. Parents, and other visitors, should use the Crow Park lot off the main road.

Families may park in the Crowe Park lot and walk children to school, or they can unload passengers in the designated zone (see above picture of white lined area).  A staff member is on duty from 8:15am-8:30am to guide children. After unloading, please exit through Tiger Road. Do not attempt to turn in the road, or staff parking lot as this creates traffic jams and safety issues. Note: the curb near the school is a no parking zone.
No Parking Zone

We understand finding a parking spot is especially difficult on early release days. If you have to wait for a spot to open up, please don't worry we will have your children wait for you inside the office.

Many families have been biking to and from school with their children. I've noticed the adults all wear helmets- thank you!! You are wonderful role models for young children.

Choose Kind

This girl's actions matched her teeshirt!

 To promote kindness, our PTO helped organized the sale of 'Choose Kind' teeshirts. The logo reflects one of our core values- be kind. Staff and students are encouraged to wear kindness themed shirts on Fridays for the remainder of the school year. If students don't have such a shirt, they can also wear green to show school pride and support for our core values.

When I was in the cafeteria recently, a kindergartener came over to me in tears stating she had no one to play with- immediately another girl jumped up and asked to play with her at recess. This brought a smile to both their faces. I see random acts of kindness like this everyday at Green Meadow! 

Our dedicated team of cafeteria workers enjoyed surprising this
second grader with a prize on 'lucky lunch tray day'!

Thank you cards for our PTO Families!

This is a sampling of cards made by GMS students during kindness week. A stack of cards were given to the P.T.O. to thank parents for their generous support throughout this year!

We Appreciate Our Parents!!

GMS staff members were treated to a delicious lunch in a festive setting thanks to parent volunteers! On behalf of my colleagues,  I wish to extend our sincere appreciation to everyone who sent in gift cards and treats, and to the volunteers who shopped, decorated, and served us
such a festive lunch on May 4th! Thank you!
Balloons & flowers created a festive setting!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


To keep parents updated on our implemention of PBIS at Green Meadow, we hope to posts pictures and news blasts on this blog. Below is an overview of the rolling out of our first initiative. If you have questions about PBIS, feel free to contact the Green Meadow coaches- Ann Rutherford, Julie Danforth, and Katie Krasinski.
What is PBIS?
Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports
This is a framework that the school is adopting; the 2017-2018 school year is Year 1 of the 3-year implementation process.  We will be defining and teaching expected behavior, reinforcing and celebrating the positive, collecting and monitoring data, and continually repeating, reminding and reinforcing.  
Thank you to Ms. Fioretti's 1st grade class for creating this video, which was shown
during k-3 Grade Level Meetings introducing "Pawsitive Hallway Expectations"!
PBIS Blast
May 7, 2018
Updating you on the latest happenings at Green Meadow School with PBIS
The Pawsitive Hallway Behavior Initiative has started!  
Our initial PBIS efforts will be focused on hallway behavior.
  • This was introduced to students during recent Grade Level meetings
  • We defined expected hallway behavior in the contect of the school's core values. This is one component of the school's new Behavior Matrix, which defines what it looks like to be a kind, safe learner in different settings of the school.
  • Students will be reinforced for expected hallway behavior using paw stickers and paw cards.
  • Paw stickers are individual reinforcement for expected hallway behavior.
  • Paw cards are whole class reinforcement for expected hallway behavior.
  • Each grade has a 100's  chart that will be filled with paws and stickers which will be posted in the hallways. Once the entire chart is filled, each class will earn an extra recess.
Kindergartener posting paw earned by her class.
Charts displaying incentives earned by gr. 1
 'Hallway Expectations'
Posted in English & Spanish
Ms. Rutherford & Ms. Krasinski display the 100's chart
during the third grade meeting.

Helping the Homeless

Message from a Maynard H.S. Senior~
Collection Box in GMS Lobby

My name is Kayla Rabel and I'm a current senior at Maynard High School. For my Senior Class Project, my project component will be setting up a donation box in the Green Meadow front lobby and the high school library, looking for the following items: non-perishable food items, toiletries (travel sized items; deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpastes, feminine care, etc.) and gently used blankets. 

These donations will be distributed to the homeless in conjunction with the Acton Police Department, where I am interning. 

Donation collections will be April 23rd- May 4th

Celebrating Seniors

A message from Olga Doktorov, High School Teacher~

Support your seniors!  Graduation of the class of 2018 is right around the corner, and we can help you celebrate this important milestone with the third annual graduation fundraiser! This year you can purchase not only balloons but customized yard signs as well. 

There are 3 options available:
 Black Package  $40: offers the yard sign with the name of the senior as well as the college they are planning to attend along with 3 graduation balloons! 
Orange package $30:  offers a yard sign with just the name of the senior as well as 1 balloon
Balloons only $5 per balloon offers a fabulous orange Mylar balloon in the shape of a star with the “Class of 2018” written on them for only $5. 
Want to add more balloons to any order? No problem! Each additional balloon is only $4.

We will place the balloons and yard signs on the house of the designated senior on June 7th! Place your order by emailing or . All orders must be submitted and paid in full via a check payable to MHS Class of 2018 or cash brought to the main office by May 16th.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Using Technology to Foster Friendships

At Green Meadow, we often have new students enroll who just moved to the U.S. from another country. Today, I had a 30 minute conversation with a new parent using an iphone. Neither of us could speak the other's language, yet we were able to answer each other's questions and form a positive connection using an app. 'Google Translate' allows you to type or speak into a microphone, then quickly translate it into the language of your choice. The app also has a camera feature that can read and translate documents. Below is a screenshot of how the app changed a PTO flyer into Portuguese. The wording popped up in English prior to being translated. Best of all, the google app is free!

I also discovered gmail has a feature in the upper right hand corner that allows you to select "translate message" from a drop down menu on desktops. It is located next to the reply button once an email message is open.

Arriving in a new country can be very isolating, often children are not invited on playdates or to birthday parties because it is hard for parents to coordinate plans with a language barrier.  I am sharing these free resources in the hope that Green Meadow families will use them to communicate and develop friendships with newcomers. In this global age, becoming friends with classmates from other countries can be such an enriching experience!
Gmail drop down link
Free Google App