Elysian Charter School of Hoboken
Elysian Charter School of Hoboken
Harry Laub, Ph.D., Director
Elysian Charter School
Weekly Newsletter

A Positively Different Public School

October 30, 2017         Vol. 13  Issue 8
The school newsletter is sent out on Mondays.  When there is a holiday, the newsletter is sent the following day. 

Please note:  Send news to deb.rosner@ecsnj.org by 9:00 AM on Mondays.
Harry's Corner
The article first appeared on Scholastic.com.  The links in this article lead to related articles from that website.
Make the Most of Your Teacher Conference
Advance planning means your teacher conference will be productive and pleasant.
Peggy Coppola of Dix Hills, New York, learned an important lesson when she showed up late — and unprepared — for her first parent teacher conference with her son's kindergarten teacher. "She told me things I didn't expect."
Coppola says she felt like "a deer in headlights" when she discovered Johnmarco wasn't performing well on tests and was staring at the ceiling when he was asked questions. "I walked out kicking myself," says Coppola. "I should have asked how I could help, whether his behavior was normal for his age, or what the school could do. If I had stopped and thought ahead of time, I would have been prepared."
This year, when 10-year-old Johnmarco entered 5th grade, Coppola made sure she was ready for that first teacher conference. Together, she and her son reviewed test scores and discussed what was going on in his classroom. Then, Coppola says, she felt she could "anticipate what the teacher would say."
While we expect teachers to prepare for these meetings, parents don't always take the time to do the same. That's unfortunate, since the parent-teacher conference is often one of the only opportunities parents get to meet with their child's teacher one-on-one. "You gain the perspective of a trained professional who spends an enormous amount of time with your child," says Gracemarie Rozea, New York State regional director for the Parent Teacher Association (PTA). "The teacher has the opportunity to see your child interacting with other children, and is a more objective evaluator of your child than you as a parent might be."
That's important whether your child is just starting out in elementary school or on her way to high school. "Ninth grade is a critical time because it's the foundation of the high school career," says Doris Ekert, a former high school English teacher from Massapequa, New York. "Having a notice come home isn't enough contact. This is the time to talk about your child."
Too often, parents come to the meeting expecting the discussion to revolve around their child's test scores, Ekert says. "They're important, but parents need to look at the big picture. We have to bring up kids who aren't just smart. Think about the human being you're raising. It's the whole child that needs to be addressed." If you find your child's teacher is the one focusing too much on grades and academics, try asking questions that address the parts of your child that can't be measured by test scores and homework, such as character and friendships.
Teachers Want Your Input
Teachers are just as interested in your input as you are in theirs. "There are many things about your child the teacher doesn't know," Rozea says. Teachers want to be informed of any changes your child is facing in his personal or family life, and how he behaves at home in comparison to how he acts at school. Your child's comfort level in the classroom, whether he's found his niche among fellow students, and whether he seems stressed or happy are all important clues to his social and emotional well-being — and it's only by working together that you and your child's teacher can fully understand them.
"Social problems used to start in middle school, but now they're rearing their heads as young as 3rd grade, and this impacts academic performance," says Margaret Sagarese, author of The Rollercoaster Years.
With so much to talk about in so little time, here's how you can make the most of your meeting:
Before the Teacher Conference
  • Start preparing early. Don't wait until the night before to get organized. Create a folder at the beginning of the year in which you store test scores, big homework assignments, and your notes (about things your child has told you or any other topics you want to address).
  • Talk to your child. Ask how she's doing in class, what's going on during lunchtime, recess, and when she goes to special classes like music or gym. "You want to find out both the positive and negative," says Rozea. If you don't like what you're hearing, investigate. Talk to other parents to see if their children are expressing similar concerns. "You need to find out whether your child is perceiving everything accurately or if she's misunderstanding a situation," she says.
During the Teacher Conference
  • Arrive early. With only a few precious minutes to spend, you don't want to be late. It will shorten your time with your child's teacher and affect her day's entire schedule.
  • Enter with the right attitude. The goal of both the teacher and the parent should be the success of the student, but sometimes parents have a hard time discussing tough issues. Rather than put the teacher on the defensive, arrive with a compliment to start the conference off on the right foot. ("My son is really enjoying the unit on space" or "We had a great time on the field trip.") Then address any concerns in a respectful way.
  • Find out the communication protocol. Don't let this be the only time you talk to your child's teacher. Ask how she likes to communicate, suggests Sagarese, whether it's by e-mail, notes passed through a folder, or phone calls. "Reinforce that you are there if she wants to talk to you," she says. "Let the teacher know you want to be that kind of partner."
After the Teacher Conference
  • Follow up. If the teacher brings something to your attention that needs to be addressed with your child, take steps to put the plan in motion, whether it's helping with organizational skills, getting extra help, or addressing a social issue.
  • Update your child. Start with the positive things her teacher had to say, then fill her in on any concerns you and the teacher discussed. Explain how you can all work together to ensure your child has a successful year.

In Memoriam - Jerry "Prince Bee" Grant

Our Elysian Community has been touched by an unspeakable tragedy.   Over this past weekend, 8-year old Jerry Grant was struck and killed in Jersey City while collecting money for uniforms along with his fellow members of the H.O.N.E.Y. Bees, a troupe of national champion Double Dutch jumpers.  Jerry was the youngest of "The Bees" and its only boy member. (The group name derives from Helping Others Now, Empowering Yourself).  Elysian had recently begun a relationship with the HONEY Bee organization by inviting them to lead a Double Dutch after school club,  Jerry's mom, an inspiring, enthusiastic woman, is our club leader.  And, just one week ago, Jerry visited the club where he showed off his jumping talents to our thrilled club members.  As you can imagine, his family and friends are grief-stricken.  We have already sent our deepest sympathy to his mom but, as a community, we would like to help out in any way possible.  The family has set up a "youcaring" page (link below) where they are asking for donations to help with funeral expenses.  Please honor Jerry "Prince Bee" Grant by donating to the family as the HONEY Bees troupe is all about giving back to their community and helping others. 
Thank you.

Elysian 3rd Grader, Keira, Collects for Homeless Shelter

The Shelter are in great need of the following items; 

  • hats

  • scarves

  • gloves

  • hand warmers

Let's show them that we are part of a caring Community. Please leave your donations at the bottom of the stairs (entrance lobby) week commencing 13th November.

Thanks in advance for you generous support!

After School Enrichment Clubs

ATTENTION PARENTS:    All after school clubs for Tuesday, October 31st  have been cancelled so children can attend the Hoboken Halloween Parade which begins at 3:15 PM if they so choose. All affected clubs will have an extra class added at the end of the session.  Thank you.

Campaigning in School
Elysian is blessed to have a number of families who are active in our local politics.  While this is a wonderful lesson in civics for our students, I would like to be sure that everything is done appropriately and fairly.  To that end, I am asking that all campaigning and distribution of campaign literature not be done directly in front of our door.  I am also requesting that there be no distribution of an campaign literature within the school.  Thank you.

Sibling Kindergarten Lottery Preference due now!

Sibling Lottery Preference for Kindergarten forms went out in backpacks a few days ago.  Please fill in forms by hand and turn into the office so that your form does not get mixed into the general population of people submitting forms.

Please fill out both sides.  In order for your spot to be guaranteed if you are currently a family at Elysian, you must turn in your application by the deadline of January 12th.  But we would greatly appreciate your turning it in now so that we can plan for next year. 

Also, if you have a sibling who is currently on the wait list for Elysian, please remember to turn in an application for them as well for the 2018-2019 school year.

If you need another form, please come to the office.
Lunch credit 

was given to all 7th & 8th graders who attended the Blairstown trip last week.  Your credit should appear on your account at orgsonline.com

We are a NUT Free School
For the safety of our students, when bringing class snacks or providing food for your own child, please avoid peanut butter, cookies and candies containing nuts.  Thank you.
KUUMBA Day Meeting is Thursday, November 2
Room of Requirement (Room 313), 3rd Floor - right after drop off.

This is actually our 20th KUUMBA Day (not our 19th as previously stated)!
Friends of Elysian
PTSO Corner
Halloween Party Thanks - Thank you to the chairs of our Halloween Party: Lisa Spear, Stephanie Gaasterland, Meredith Hayes and Sara Green! A huge thank you to the staff and many volunteers    who made the event possible!! Thank you for everyone who donated donuts and supplies! And, thanks to Elissa Goodman and Maria Badali for organizing the 6th Grade Empanada Fundraiser. The 6th grade raised $375 for their trips this year!
A gigantic thank you to Jenn Nilsen for being our official Halloween Party photographer. She has graciously uploaded her shots to https://jennifernilsenphotography.shootproof.com/gallery/5350328/ for our community to view and download! Password: Halloween 
Congratulations to our Costume Contest winners: Johnny Craft (K-2 winner), Ben Vassallo (3-5 winner), Gavin Rutledge (6-8 winner), Megan Phalen (Most Creative), Gabe Prince (Scariest Costume), Grant Napolitani (Crowd Favorite).

Our big Candy Corn Contest winners were Blathnaid Hogan and Arhan Puri, both with guesses of 800. The actual total was 807!

A huge thank you to the staff and many volunteers who made the event possible!! Thanks to Elissa Goodman and Maria Badali for organizing the 6th Grade Empanada Fundraiser. The 6th grade raised $375 for their trips this year!

Coin Challenge Returns - Start saving your pennies (and nickels, dimes and quarters too!). The Elysian Coin Challenge is returning the week of November 13.

Picture Day
 - School Picture Day was last Friday. Please wait for your child's code from the company in order to view your photos online, place orders, or see if you'd like to sign up for retakes. 

Chili Cook-Off
 - Save the date and get your recipes ready for Saturday, January 6, at the Elks Club! 

PTSO Dues Reminder 
- It's not too late to send in your PTSO dues. We are asking $25 per student. Turn into the office in any envelope, with your children's name.

      Elysian Collects Box Tops and LABELS for Education
         Look for the container near Deb's desk in the office!  Thank you! 
As per state law, we no longer publish the exact location of trips for security reasons.
Please read the calendar weekly, as changes are updated regularly.

    Monday, October 30
    • Play Practice 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM - 6D Rm # 323
    • Track Practice 3:00 PM - 3:45 PM - 1600 Park
    • High School Night for parents of students 6th, 7th, and 8th, 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM
    Thursday, November 2
    • Rugby Practice, 3:00 PM to 3:45 PM, 1600 Park
    Friday, November 3
    • Open House for Prospective Parents, 8:45 AM
    Saturday. November 4
    • Track Meet, 10:00 AM, Lincoln Park (Blue Track)
    Monday, November 6 
    • Track Practice, 3:00 PM to 3:45 PM, 1600 Park
    Tuesday, November 7
    • Play Practice, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM
    Wednesday, November 8
    • 3rd Grade Trip 
    Thursday, November 9
    • 6th Grade Trip
    • 8th Grade Trip
    • Rugby Practice, 3:00 PM - 3:45 PM
    Friday, November 10
    • Veterans Day, Elysian Closed
    Sunday, November 12
    • Track Meet, 10:00 AM, Lincoln Park (Blue Track) 
    Monday, November 13
    • Track Practice, 3:00 PM to 3:45 PM, 1600 Park
    Monday, November 13 - Friday, November 17
    • Parent Conferences
    Tuesday, November 14
    • Play Practice, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM
    • Parent Conferences 
    Wednesday, November 15
    • 1/2 Day of School
    • Parent Conferences 
    Thursday, November 16
    • 4th Grade Trip 
    • Parent Conferences
    Friday, November 17 
    • Parent Conferences 
    Saturday, November 18 
    • Track Meet, 10:00 AM, Lincoln Park (Blue Track)
    Tuesday, November 21
    • Play Practice, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM
    Wednesday, November 22
    • 1/2 Day of School
    Thursday, November 23 - Friday, November 24
    • Thanksgiving Break, Elysian Closed
    Monday, November 27
    • Open House For Prospective Parents, 6:00 PM
    • Board Meeting, 7:00 PM
    Tuesday, November 28
    • Play Practice, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM
    Friday, December 1
    • Community Meeting, 8:30 AM - Gym
    Saturday, December 2
    • Open House, 10:00 AM 
    Tuesday, December 5
    •  Play Practice, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM
    Tuesday,  December 12
    • Play Practice, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM 
    Wednesday, December 13
    • 1/2 Day of School - Staff Developement
    Saturday, December 16
    • Kuumba Day - Gym
    Monday, December 18
    • Board Meeting, 7:00 PM
    Tuesday, December 19
    • Play Practice, 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM
    Friday, December 22
    • 1/2 Day of School
    Monday, December 25 - Monday, January 1, 2018
    • Winter Break, Elysian Closed

    Mark Your Calendars
    Saturday, December 16 is KUUMBA Day!  More Info to Follow

    1460 Garden Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030
    Harry Laub, Ph.D., Director | harry.laub@ecsnj.org | Phone:201.876.0102 | Fax:201.876.9576
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