Nobles Parents' E-Newsletter

October 2012

Nobles Parents' E-Newsletter October 2012

The Light, The Air, The Food by Erika Guy, Dean of Students

There is always that one day in late August or early September when the shift is so obviously on. By mid-August we have become so hypnotized by the successive strings of long, hot, high humidity summer days that some of us actually delude ourselves into thinking that it will go on and on. Then the switch gets flipped. Overnight it seems, the slant of light shifts and the sky sparkles in a very different way. Overnight, it is fall. For some, this climatic experience is bittersweet. Not for me. Despite the predictable arrival of my “start-of-school” head cold, I am more than ready.

Now that Staples and other such school supply houses begin their advertising onslaught by late-July, our kids felt the circling shark of September long before the shift in climate mentioned above, but this start to the school year was different from all others in one significant way: the kids were by and large, HAPPY to be back at Nobles. The reason?  I am calling it the “campus-wide antidepressant.” It is the newly-renovated Castle dining facility. Good food in glorious surroundings makes people happy. Period.  From the sunlight-infused grand main dining hall to the coveted terrace tables to the quesadilla station, kids (and adults) are simply loving the new addition to the Nobles experience. Despite first Assembly warnings about the potential to put on the “Castle 15,” the enthusiasm with which the community has embraced our new Castle has not waned. The daily healthy food options are so numerous that lunch is no longer a drive-by for anyone.

Just two of the advantages already being enjoyed by the community because of the new Castle dining facility:

  1. The Cooking Club will now be able to actually cook something!  We are beginning with a kitchen knife skills workshop (to insure the health and safety of all)
  2. The new “action station” will serve as the  lab for the inaugural spring science elective “The Chemistry of Cuisine”

If you have not walked through it, I encourage you to stop by sometime in the off hours to fully understand the joy maker that is our new dining hall!

Online Auction and Raffle

You knew they were great teachers, but did you know they were great chefs? Bid to win dinner prepared by Nobles luminaries Dick Baker, Bill Bussey, Tim Carey and Erika Guy. To register, log in and start bidding on this and other unique auction items, go to: Also, buy raffle tickets and you may be the lucky winner of an iPhone 5 or other Apple products with your $1,000 gift certificate to the Apple Store. To purchase tickets go to:

Start bidding and buying today! 100% of your purchases will go directly to Achieve, a tuition-free academic enrichment program for low-income middle school children. For more information on Achieve, visit


What Makes a Great Sports (Or Theatre, Or…) Parent by Ben Snyder, Head of Upper School

When our daughter Abby was playing club soccer, she always noticed where I stood during her games—and it was never with parents of her teammates. “Why won’t you stand with the other parents?” she’d frequently ask.

While my response to my then 11-year-old daughter was overly simple, it revolved around my discomfort with vocal adults who didn’t know the game well (I coached Nobles varsity soccer teams for 20 years); more importantly, I simply grew tired of adults who were way too caught up in the "quality" of performance of their child and the results of an individual contest.

Over the years a significant body of research has evolved around being an effective parent of a high school athlete—and I would maintain that these lessons apply to any extracurricular activity that can be directly observed by parents.

When I ask Nobles students why they play sports, they invariably say, “Because it is fun.” And when I ask when sports are not fun for them, the responses often turn to “…when my parents put too much pressure on me.” A recent article a colleague shared with me outlines many of the ways in which parents can be positive sports (or extracurricular) parents.

Most important, if you can, just show up. As much as kids often say, “You don’t need to come,” they really do want you there—and they want you cheering for their team, not just for them. At Nobles most kids really love their teams or their casts and they want to share that with you and see that you support them and the group.

We have all witnessed the "nightmare sports parent" who spends the majority of any game berating officials, second-guessing coaches or criticizing the performance of our child’s teammate. Our behavior as parents (in every context) is the surest way to set an example for our children. Those of us who complain about officials, coaches, players on the other (or our own) team, etc.— often have the children with the biggest issues with sportsmanship. Remember, just like Abby playing club soccer, they notice where we are and what we are doing.

We should also take our cues about our post-game behavior from our kids. If they have lost a big game or dropped important lines in a show, they will be disappointed and need our support—not our editorials about how decisions made by referees, coaches, teammates or fellow actors could have changed the outcome. I always try to remember two things in these moments: to acknowledge that such disappointments are hard and to remind myself that "this too will pass," and good lessons can be learned moving forward.

Finally, it is important for us to bear in mind that coaching a team or directing a play is a demanding and emotionally draining job. I’ve had countless sleepless nights thinking about what I might have done differently as a coach to reach an individual player or to help a Nobles team have a different outcome in an important contest. I was fine with parents engaging me about ways in which their children could improve their performance or behavior in the team setting, and I was always interested in things going on (at home, with friends, personal issues) for a student that might have an impact on him or her. What should be off limits, however, are topics such as playing time, strategy or other players on the team (or in the context of the theatre, roles in plays, other actors, etc.). If those matters concern your son or daughter, she or he should be the one going to talk to the coach (or director)—these conversations, with support from an advisor or another trusted Nobles adult, can provide really powerful growth opportunities for our kids.

We have been very lucky at Nobles to have generations of parents who are phenomenally supportive in all the right ways—and we look forward to continuing those positive and productive relationships as we head in to the busy schedule of games and performances this year.

Follow Us on Twitter

Nobles has a new Twitter feed, courtesy of the one and only Bill Bussey. Hear daily musings, campus happenings and general observations—all in 140 characters or less, of course.

Follow us @The_Nobles_Buzz or visit

Nobles Yard Sale

The countdown continues for the Nobles Yard Sale for Scholarships!

Donations may be dropped off at the Omni rink from 7 a.m.-6 p.m., weekdays only, until Thurs., Oct. 11. Please donate sporting goods, clothing, toys, jewelry, books, small electronics, house wares and furniture in good condition.

The sale starts Fri., Oct.12 at 8 a.m. for faculty and staff and then the doors open to the Nobles community at 1:30 p.m., and continue throughout the day until 6:30 p.m. Please come and visit the sale or help work the event. Stop in to find that special treasure you didn’t realize you wanted, or to purchase some goodies from the bake sale table. The sale resumes at 8 a.m. on Sat., Oct. 13 and is open to the general public.

Volunteers are still needed to help run the sale. It’s hectic, it’s fun and it’s a great way to make some lasting new friendships!

Contact Nicola DiFelice at, Camellia Bloch at or Brooke Sandford at with any questions, or to volunteer!


Should we be Charitable to Cheaters? by John Gifford, Head of Middle School

After listening to another story about the Harvard cheating scandal, I was left wondering how these students—considered some of the brightest in the country—could (allegedly, at least) make this immoral decision.  Wasn’t this supposed to be an enlightened generation who would fix the things that we’d messed up? They are more connected and aware than their parents, more engaged, more socially conscious and globally involved…And then they go and cheat?

I thought I’d had an epiphany. I went to my wife, a sounding board of great wisdom and withering honesty, and asked, “What do you think of this?  We need to take all the morality completely out of the cheating conversation. It isn’t about morality. Cheaters aren’t bad people; they are not even acting badly when they cheat.  They are just being human. We are evolutionarily programmed to cheat.”

It is not a new idea.  We, as a species, evolved in an environment of limited resources.  We can’t help ourselves from eating too much salt, fat and sugar because evolutionarily speaking those were substances that were rare and valuable as our species developed.  Now that they are plentiful, we can’t un-program ourselves from wanting and consuming these easy resources. The species that could steal the meal without expending a great deal of energy would have an advantage over the species that expended a great amount of energy for the same reward.  Can’t the same be said for Harvard students hoping to get an easy “A”?

The focus, I suggested, should be on what those decisions, in aggregate, do to us. The lazy way, over time, leads to a less capable individual.  The easy way out leads to an adult who has not exercised the skills needed to be successful autonomously.

“I shouldn’t have Middle School students, who probably don’t fully realize why they cheat, feel like bad people because they do so.”

Laurie got that knitted-brow look that she gets when she thinks I’m crazy.

“This isn’t 'either, or;' it is 'both, and,'” she said. “You can explain to them that there might be an evolutionary root to cheating, but that doesn’t let them off the hook.  Sure, we have evolved to figure out how to feed ourselves each day but we have also evolved to read and make art and take care of each other.  We have evolved enough to know that it is right to behave yourself when you are part of a group.

“They should absolutely feel guilty!  They should feel withering guilt because when they cheat they are not being fair to the group.  That teacher spent time writing a test designed to try and help figure out what they know or don’t.  The cheating kid takes away that teacher’s ability to do their job as well as they can.  Other students in the class worked their tails off to get the grade they deserve on that test and then a peer waltzes in and scores better than they did by looking at their paper. It is wrong and they should understand that it is wrong.  Especially when they are in the Middle School, they should hear that cheating is wrong.  You can also explain to them that it could be, in part, evolutionary.  They should also understand that over time it will make them less capable.  But yes: they should be made to feel guilty as well because their actions are completely unfair.”

She’s right, of course.  And I’m not sure why I all of a sudden wanted to shift my strategy and offer the kids one-stop-shopping on why not to cheat.   I have always felt that that, in work with Middle Schoolers, you always work in five different ways to teach the same lesson.  Repetition is good (parents know that their children never hear the first four requests to do a chore).  They demand (and are probably owed) a reason behind a mandate. Finally, not every kid will react to every strategy—some are motivated by fear, some by duty, and some by reason.

At Nobles, we must join forces with parents to aid in the development of young people who want to see academic success through honest means.  Convincing them to put in the time to “do it right”, and not take shortcuts, will take a multipronged approach.

Nobles Bottle Ban

We need your help to implement THE NEW SCHOOL-WIDE BAN ON SINGLE USE PLASTIC BOTTLES. Quite simply, the school requests that no single use plastic water bottles be brought on to campus.

As a parent, if you volunteer to donate beverages for students to have at events on campus, we ask that you do not bring bottled water to campus. Ideally, you feel comfortable extending the ban to all single use plastic bottled drinks. If you choose to provide beverages that aren’t water, please consider serving canned drinks that will be recycled, drinks in juice boxes, or mixing large amounts of powdered drink mix into large jugs for serving into paper cups which can be recycled.

Every student has been asked to bring a reusable water bottle to campus for daily use. Over the summer, the campus was outfitted with filtered water fountains designed to accommodate various shapes of reuseable water bottles. Please remind your student to bring a water bottle to school daily.

This ban represents one of the many campus-wide Green Team programs that have been implemented at the school. The Nobles Green Team, co-led by Director of Building and Grounds Mike McHugh and biology teacher Deb Harrison, is well supported by Head of School Bob Henderson and Athletic Director Alex Gallagher, as well as other administrative heads and faculty members.

To understand the motivation for the ban, we urge you to look at "Plastic Is Forever," included below. We are confident that after reading it, you will be energized to support this historic effort to ban all single use plastic bottles on the Nobles campus—and perhaps in your own homes as well.

Thank you in advance for working with us to create a healthier campus and to build a more sustainable planet. Change is happening. Join us on campus and at home!

Jill Dalby Ellison
Kirsten M. Dawson  
Parent Representatives to the Nobles Green Team: Go Blue! Go Green!

Plastic Is Forever


  • PLASTIC IS FOREVER. Plastic photo degrades, but does not bio degrade. Plastic breaks into smaller and smaller pieces, but it never goes away.
  • There is NO SUCH THING AS PLASTIC RECYCLING, just down cycling—changing it from one form into another.
  • Over the past 40 years, the amount of plastic in the oceans has increased
  • PLASTIC PARTICULATES ARE FOUND IN EVERY OCEAN.  In one study, sampling revealed that for every two pieces of plankton, there were six pieces of plastic.
  • PLASTIC ACTS LIKE A MAGNET BECAUSE IT IS DERIVED FROM AN ORGANIC SUBSTANCE.  Pollutants stick to plastic particulates. Fish ingest particulates and the pollutants.  And we eat the fish.
  • The GREAT PACIFIC GARBAGE PATCH is not a fixed island.  It is an ENORMOUS FLOATING MASS MADE UP OF 90% PLASTIC WASTE.  It measures 2,000 square miles and moves  between Hawaii and the Midway Atoll depending on the ocean gyres.
  • Roughly 80% OF THE PLASTIC IN THE OCEAN COMES FROM LAND SOURCES while 20% comes from ships at sea.

When it comes to plastic pollution, we are the solution: Refuse to use single use plastics.

Sources: and

Class III Reps: Ruth Gilleran (left) and Jennifer Potter

Dear Class III parents and guardians,

We hope everyone enjoyed Back-to-School night.  As we heard from many of the faculty members, the Class III year curriculum is a bit more rigorous and therefore we look forward to planning several activities for both the parents and the kids that will allow us all to step back, relax and have some fun.  

It was wonderful to see so many of you at our first coffee. Thank you especially to the Class III Deans, Tara McDonald and Amy Joyce, for stopping by to spend some time with us. We are grateful to those of you who signed up to volunteer. It’s never too late to get involved and we welcome your participation. If you would like to help us plan some activities, please send an email to either Jen Potter at or Ruth Gilleran at Alternatively, click here to complete the online volunteer form. You must log in with your parent sign-in credentials and then select "Volunteer at Nobles" in the parents' section

The Class III Parent Social is on Fri., Oct. 26, from 7-10 p.m. Please set aside the date! We would love to see as many of you as possible at this event.   It will take place at the home of Karen and Brian Conway in Newton, Mass., and it is being held on the same night at the kids’ Halloween Dance.  Drop them off and then come over to the Conway’s for a relaxing and enjoyable evening.   You may click here to RSVP:

October is another busy month at Nobles. Please mark your calendars with the events listed below and be sure to check the website for an entire list of school-wide events:

  • Thurs., Oct. 4: Student travel and study abroad opportunities (for parents only), 7- 8:30 p.m., Morrison Forum.
  • Mon., Oct. 8: No School—Columbus Day
  • Fri. and Sat., Oct.12-13: Nobles Yard Sale, 8: a.m.-6 p.m. (Fri.) and 8:00 a.m.-4 p.m. (Sat.), Omni Rink  
  • Wed., Oct. 17: Parent Education Night with JoAnn Deak, 7-8:30 p.m., Lawrence Auditorium
  • Mon., Oct. 22: Faculty Comment Writing Day—No Classes
  • Fri., Oct. 26: Kids' Halloween Dance, 7-10 p.m., Castle

We hope the 2012-2013 school year is off to a good start.  If we can help in anyway, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Warm regards,

Ruth Gilleran,
Jennifer Potter,

From the NTC

This fall, the Nobles Theatre Collective (NTC) will present two student-directed plays on Oct. 25, from 6:30-8 p.m, and Oct. 26, from 5-7 p.m. Diana Smith, Class I, will direct Furry Tails with a Twist, a show in which chaos ensues as two actors try to put on a collection of fairy tales with varying degrees of success. Emily London, Class I, will direct No Problem, written by Catherine Butterfield. In this show two women will rekindle a past friendship over a semi-disastrous lunch date.

The NTC will also present The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde. Performances are scheduled for Nov. 7, 8 and 9 at 6:30 p.m., and Nov. 10 at 2 p.m. only. This part-satire and part-comedy of manners, this “Trivial Play for Serious People” (as Wilde subtitled it) seems ostentatiously artificial. However, below the surface of the light and witty comedy lurks an attack on self-righteous moralism and hypocrisy.

Information on tickets and performance length will be available on by early November. We hope to see many of you at both performances.

Maureen Shiels Norment at
John DeVoy at


Class II Reps: Suzie Montgomery (left) and Eileen Orscheln

It was wonderful to see so many of you at our Parents' Coffee a few weeks ago and then to see more of you at Back-to-School Night.  Thank you to those of you who have completed a volunteer form and/or have already signed up to be involved in various Class II events this year.  It is never too late to get involved and we truly welcome your participation! Please send us an email or log in to the website and complete the online Volunteer Form.

We hope you and your children have had a smooth transition into Class II year.  It's hHard to believe we are already through September. October is a busy month at Nobles, so be sure to mark your calendars for the upcoming important dates.

  • Thurs., Oct. 4—Flu Clinic, 9 a.m.- 1 p.m., Morrison Forum, for students, parents, staff and faculty.  Consent form must be completed and is available on the website. Cost is $25. If you have any questions please contact the Nobles Health Office at (781) 320-7070.
  • Thurs., Oct. 4- 2013Travel and Study Away Informational Night, 7:30-8:30 p.m.,  Morrison Forum.  This evening is for parents/guardians and is a time to gather information about the travel opportunities for 2013 and the study away possibilities for 2013-2014.  Faculty/staff who are leading trips will be there to provide information and to answer any questions about their specific trips.
  • Thurs., Oct. 11Parents' Association Meeting, 8-9:30 a.m., in Castle.  All are welcome to attend.
  • Tues., Oct. 16Workshop on the College Process During the Class II Year,  7-8:30 p.m., Towles Auditorium.
  • Wed., Oct. 17Parent Education Night with JoAnn Deak, 7-8:30 p.m., Lawrence Auditorium.  Child psychologist and cutting edge brain expert, JoAnn Deak will bring her take-no-prisoners, no-nonsense presentation to Nobles.
  • Sat., Oct. 20PSATs at Nobles, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.,  MAC

Don’t forget to mark your calendars for Class II Fall Parent’s SocialFri., Nov. 2, 7-10 p.m. Please join us for an evening of cocktails and conversation!  This event will be graciously hosted by Hillary and Carlo von Schroeter. Click here to RSVP:

We look forward to seeing all of you during this busy and fun month.  As always please feel free to call or email us with any questions or concerns.

Your Class II Parent Representatives,

Suzie Montgomery-
Eileen Orscheln -

Class I Reps: (from left): Linda Courtiss Rheingold, Marion Mussafer, Elaine Sobell

A few leaves are beginning to turn, the nights are getting cooler and the school year doesn’t feel "new" anymore.  We have enjoyed feeding the students as well as the parents, and catching up with old friends and making new ones. Opportunities abound for that to continue in October:  Take a look at the packed calendar on the school website.  There is something planned almost every day this month.  Some highlights are listed below.  Those that are particular to Class I are listed in bold; others are school-wide but bear repeating. 

  • Thurs., Oct. 4, 8 a.m.—Class I Parent Coffee in the Castle Upper Dining Room (come check it out if you haven’t done so!)
  • Thurs., Oct. 4—Flu Clinic (stay healthy this winter)
  • Fri., Oct. 5—Multicultural Fair and Friday Night Lights
  • Sat., Oct. 6 and Sat., Oct. 27—continuation of the fall cookouts
  • Mon., Oct. 8—Columbus Day—No School (a good day for college visits)
  • Fri., Oct. 12 and Sat., Oct. 13—The Nobles Yard Sale
  • Wed., Oct. 17, 7 p.m.—Parent Education Night with JoAnn Deak
  • Thurs., Oct. 18, 7 p.m.Yearbook Recognition Ad Workshop
  • Mon., Oct. 22—Comment Writing Day—No School (another good day for college visits)
  • Fri., Oct. 26—Nobles Halloween Dance
  • Wed., Oct. 31Class I Halloween Surprise Lunch for students

You can find information about all these events on the school website, but pay particular note to the Yearbook Recognition Ad Workshop.  That is being held in anticipation of the Fri., Nov. 9 deadline for submitting ads for the Yearbook (yes, planning for the end of the year already!).

Thanks to those of you who have already helped make our events successful; special thanks to David and Marion Mussafer for hosting the fabulous parent social.  There are plenty more volunteer opportunities.  If you are interested, please contact any of us by email or by filling out the volunteer form online.  Feel free to contact any of us although our responsibilities are noted next to our names.

Marion Mussafer,
Linda Courtiss Rheingold,
Elaine Sobell,

Or contact any of us at

A huge THANK YOU to all Class I parents and guardians who helped make the Class I
Surprise Breakfast so successful!

The students loved the morning treats and
were so appreciative!

From Community Service: The Nature of a Partnership

What does it mean to be a partner? We often think of this term used in business which assumes both a mutuality of dependence and equality of power. In relationships also, such as a marriage, the sense that both parties give to, and receive from, the partnership is key to satisfaction and success. If, over time, one side of the equation either holds different expectations, or siphons off too much energy, the other side suffers and sometimes breaks the bond. Both partners have to live in the creative tension of give and take.

Sometimes, we make the mistake in our service endeavors to believe that we, as those who are attempting to "give to others" should be the active agent in the relationships we create. "Those people" need our help and, therefore, we should respond. All well and good, as far as that takes us. It is not, however, a true partnership if that is the goal and end result of our action—that one side holds all the "wealth" of resources, and the other side passively accepts the gift.

Vidya Kagan, member of the Nobles Development Office, and her 8-year-old daughter, Reena, have fun cleaning and packaging infant toys at C2C's Family Volunteer Day on Sept. 22.

We are blind indeed if we cannot decipher the gifts in return. Over the last decades Nobles has created service partnerships of many kinds both locally and internationally. We have worked to understand the complexity of the situations our friends find themselves in, and the relentless forces that are causing the issue. This teaches us politics, economics, cultural awareness and empathy. In our weekly visits to Boston agencies and schools we come to understand the commonality of being human, as well as the uniqueness of individual experience that shapes the lives of those we learn to know. As we create projects to fit the needs of those we serve, we must also learn to work within the parameters of our own school's goals, to time manage, to shape our message to our audience, and to follow through on our promises. As new challenges emerge from the situation, and as we grow in skills and attitudes about the world, improving techniques and deeper understandings are evoked. Everything begins to look more nuanced—it is not usually a matter of "either this or that." We get wiser about why the need occurred in the first place, and how difficult the road is to repair and renew each other. All this comes back to our campus—the internal campus we carry with us everywhere.

Many long-term partnerships are well known to Nobles families: Cradles to Crayons, Community Servings, Campuses Against Cancer, and schools like Roxbury Prep and the Epiphany School. More are being created each year by your children. The lesson for all of us who connect and stay connected is to recognize all we get back when we reach out. We are forever changed...for good.

Sandi MacQuinn and Linda Hurley

From the PA Co-Chairs

Happy fall! We hope that everyone is settling into the school routine. September was a busy month for the PA, with a very successful all-school parents’ social and several class coffees.

October promises to be eventful as well. Please mark your calendars for Fri., Oct. 12 and Sat., Oct. 13, which is the Nobles Yard Sale. This is a fun event for Nobles and the Dedham community and the proceeds fund Nobles scholarships. Start your fall cleaning now by dropping off your gently used items at the Omni Rink beginning Oct. 1. If you have time, please volunteer an hour or two during set-up (Oct. 8–11) or during the actual event. Contact Brooke Sandford at to sign up.

An online silent auction and raffle benefiting Achieve will coincide with the 2012 Nobles Yard Sale.  Achieve is a tuition-free, self-funded educational program serving low-income middle school children happening right here on the Nobles campus. Some fabulous items have been donated by the generous Nobles community and a $1,000 gift certificate to the Apple store for an I-Phone 5 will be the raffle prize for one lucky winner!  Use this link to preview and bid on auction items:  Raffle tickets are on sale NOW.  To purchase them, visit:  Contact with any technology issues. Thank you for supporting Achieve!

You won’t want to miss our second PA meeting on Thurs., Oct. 11, at 8 a.m. in the Castle Library. Michael Turner, Director of the Music Program, will be our featured speaker. Michael has been at Nobles for 24 years and will have much to say about this vibrant program and what it offers to Nobles students. Immediately following our meeting we will move to the Omni Rink to help set up for the Yard Sale and we would appreciate any extra time you may have to help out!

On Sat., Oct. 6, and Sat., Oct. 27, the PA will be grilling hamburgers and selling goodies during the Nobles home sporting events. Come by for lunch or a snack, and if you would like to volunteer, please contact It is a fun way to meet people!

In addition to our PA activities, please add these important school dates to your calendar:

Oct. 5—Multcultural Fair, 2:30 to 6 p.m., in the MAC.

Oct. 5—Friday Night Lights, 7 to 9 p.m. The girls’ varsity soccer team takes on Worcester Academy on their home field under the lights.

Oct 17—Parent Education Night, 7 to 8:30 p.m., in Lawrence Auditorium. The evening will feature Dr. Joanne Deak, a leading expert on adolescent development.

We wish you an engaging and busy month!

Kris Ganong (
Lisa Soule (

Class IV Reps: Isabelle Loring (left) and Cindy Trull

Hello, Class IV parents and guardians!

It was great to see so many of you these past couple of weeks at the PA Social, our Parent Coffee and Back-to-School Night.  Our students seem to be transitioning well into high school life. 

October promises to be very busy with lots of fun and important dates. Here are the highlights you will want to be sure to get on your calendars:

  • Mon., Oct. 1: Surprise Class IV Event, 3:30-6 p.m. Pick-up at Nobles by 6 p.m.
  • Thurs., Oct. 4: Travel and Study Away Night, Morrison Forum (Middle School), 7-8:30 p.m.
  • Fri., Oct. 5:  Multicultural Fair, in the MAC, 3-6 p.m.
  • Fri., Oct. 5:  Friday Night Lights
  • Mon., Oct. 8: Columbus Day—No School.
  • Thurs., Oct. 11:  Parents' Association (PA) Meeting, Castle Library, 8-9:30 a.m.
  • Fri. and Sat., Oct. 12-13: Nobles Yard Sale, Omni Rink, 8 a.m.-4 p.m. (Set-up for the Yard Sale is all week, beginning Tues., Oct. 9, all volunteers welcome!)
  • Wed., Oct. 17:  Parent Education Night with Joann Deak, 7-8:30 p.m.  Bill Bussey gives it three thumbs up.!
  • Fri., Oct. 19: Class IV Parent Social, at the home of Barbara Ito and Jonathon Katz , 7-10 p.m. Click here to RSVP:
  • Mon., Oct. 22:  Comment Writing Day—No Classes.
  • Fri., Oct. 26: Halloween dance for students, 7-10 p.m. (FYI - No costumes at this event)
  • Wed., Oct. 31:  Halloween

We look forward to seeing you at many of these events.  Many thanks to those of you who have completed your volunteer forms or contacted us via e-mail offering to help. We appreciate it and welcome your participation. There’s still time—send us an e-mail or complete the volunteer form online.

As always, please feel free to call or email us with any questions, comments or suggestions.


Izzy Loring  (
Cindy Trull  (

Class II Deans' Report

The school year is off to an energetic start. Discussions about homework, papers and tests dominate the walk into Assembly each morning and plans for games and performances resonate in the Alcoves. Everyone has left summer behind and begun the new year with alacrity.

As students begin their Class II year, we hope that they’ll advocate for themselves immediately. At this point in their Nobles’ career, it’s critical that students take responsibility for their academic and athletic goals. We encourage students to communicate with their teachers about any concerns or questions (or about an independent interest!) regarding a class. No student should ever feel worried or self-conscious about asking a teacher for help. Recognizing and addressing the need for help is a strength that will serve them well beyond their years at Nobles. Teachers are willing and eager to work with students in helping them to achieve their goals. If students begin to feel overwhelmed by their workload, they should seek out advice from their teachers and advisors in how better to manage the long list of “to-dos” and relieve stress. We are also good resources and are certainly eager to help, but we do hope that students gain the confidence to advocate for themselves throughout the year.

It’s no secret that junior year is a busy one. While we applaud students’ high expectations and recognize their many commitments, we hope that they won’t sacrifice their health as they try to meet all those goals. Students cannot be at their best without adequate sleep and balanced nutrition. This holds true on the weekends as much as it does during the school week. Using weekends to rest and recharge will ultimately serve students well as they take on the challenges of the week. A sleep-deficit from a packed and exhausting weekend will only negatively impact the week ahead. We will continue to emphasize this with the class and hope that you’ll also help your child to make choices that will support his or her overall well-being.

We hope that all of our students this year realize that they are empowered to better their lives and the lives of those around them. We’ve enjoyed getting to know this junior class and are excited about working with them throughout the year. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.


Brian Day & Jessica Brennan
Class II Deans

Middle School Reps: (from left) Rhonda Kaplan, Sarah Paglione, Janet Nahirny, Michelle Abrecht

The 2012-2013 year has gotten off to a great start!  It was great to see so many of you at Back-to-School Night.  Although most of us have no real desire to be Middle Schoolers again, getting a quick peek into what goes on inside the classroom makes it seem pretty enticing, doesn’t it? 

October is a busy month and there are lots of opportunites for both parents and students to experience and get involved in the many facets of the Nobles community!  Here are some of the highlights—please see below for a full list of important October dates events:

Jump in

Some of you have already signed up to help out and volunteer at some of the Parents’ Association activities—thank you!  We encourage everyone to try to find the time to volunteer during the school year; it is a great way to meet other families and experience the Nobles community firsthand.  If you would like to volunteer but have not done so, log in to the Nobles website and please click here to complete your volunteer form online.  The upcoming Nobles Yard Sale provides an easy way to volunteer on Oct. 12-13.  Clean out your closets, come help sort and set-up, or come to find your treasure!  In addition to helping the school, volunteering at the Yard Sale is a terrific opportunity to get to know many different parents across all grades, as you move, sort and sell the myriad of donations. Whether you can spare an hour or a day, it will be much appreciated.  The Nobles Admissions Open House also takes place on Oct. 13, so spread the word to any families you know who are interested in learning more about Nobles.


All sports teams will be in full swing in October. Attend some games and cheer our athletes on!  New this year, the Athletic Department has created an amazing (and free) smartphone app that allows you to access your child’s games and practices on your phone!  Just search “NoblesSports” at the iTunes store on your phone to download. Perhaps during Back-to-School Night you noticed the TV display in the Forum? The Middle School would also love to showcase our Middle School athletes in action.  If you have some great photos from Nobles sports events, please email them to Michele Abrecht at

Meet, Greet and Be Merry

There are lots of opportunities coming up for parents and guardians to meet, mingle and socialize.  The Middle School Coffee, on Oct. 2, is a low-key gathering for Middle School parents to chat, ask questions and learn about volunteer opportunities throughout the year.  The fall socials are another great venue to enjoy the company of your fellow Nobles parents.  The Class VI fall social is Oct. 13, and the Class V fall social is Nov. 3.  Invitations are sent through Maryanne MacDonald’s weekly email. 

Monthly PA meetings are another great way to meet people and learn about what is going on around school.  This month’s PA meeting is on Oct. 11 at 8 a.m. 

And if you want to figure out what’s going on in your chlid’s brain, Nobles is hosting child psychologist and cutting-edge brain expert, JoAnn Deak, Ph.D. (Visit for more info) to speak to parents on Oct. 17, from 7-8:30 p.m.

Child's Play 

Although there are lots of great opportunities coming up for parents, the students have a few great things to look forward to as well.  Friday Night Lights is an all-school celebration as the Nobles girls varsity soccer team takes the field on Oct. 5. The Halloween Dance is another all-school spooktacular, taking place on Oct. 26 (FYI: There are no costumes at this event).  On Halloween itself, Wed., Oct. 31, most kids, faculty, and staff go all out and come to school dressed up in costumes—simple or elaborate, it doesn’t matter, as long as your child has fun!  And don’t forget that there is no school on Oct. 8 (Columbus Day) and Oct. 22 (Comment Writing Day).

Going Green

Please join Nobles in making our planet a little greener.  Nobles has banned the use of individual plastic water bottles at Nobles events.  Help out by using refillable water bottles or water coolers/pitchers and cups as much as possible.

We look forward to seeing you at many of these exciting events!  Please do not hesitate to contact any of us with any questions, big or small!.

Class V Reps

Sarah Paglione (
Rhonda Kaplan (

Class VI Reps

Michelle Abrecht (
Janet Nahirny (

Important Upcoming Dates

 Tues., Oct. 2

 Middle School Parents’ Coffee, Castle Library, 8 a.m.

 Fri., Oct. 5

 Multicultural Fair, MAC, 2:30-6 p.m.

 Fri., Oct. 5

 Friday Night Lights—Come cheer on the Bulldogs!

 Mon., Oct. 8

 Columbus Day—NO SCHOOL

 Thurs., Oct. 11

 PA Meeting, 8 a.m.

 Fri. and Sat.,

 Oct. 12-13

 Nobles Yard Sale!

 Sat., Oct. 13

 Admissions Open House, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

 Sat., Oct. 13

 Class VI Parents Fall Social

 Mon., Oct. 15

 Middle School Long Advisory.  No Afternoon Program; dismissal at 4 p.m.

 Wed., Oct. 17

 Parent speaker: education expert JoAnn Deak, 7-8:30 p.m.

 Mon., Oct. 22

 Comment Writing Day—NO SCHOOL

 Tues., Oct. 23

 No Afternoon Program due to faculty meeting.  Dismissal at 2:30 (there will be a proctored study hall for students who cannot be picked up at 2:30).

 Wed., Oct. 24

 Individual advisor/advisee meetings to discuss grades and comments. Students will sign up for individual meetings and are dismissed after their meeting.  No Afternoon Program.

 Fri., Oct. 26

 Nobles all-school Halloween Dance,  7-10 p.m.

 Wed., Oct. 31

 Happy Halloween!  Costumes encouraged.

 Sat., Nov. 3

 Class V Parents Fall Social

Save the Date!

Nobles Night in the Castle

A festive evening to celebrate the opening of the restored and expanded Castle
Friday, November 16, 2012
6–10 p.m.

Please note: This is not a student event

For further information, contact Katherine Minevitz at or 781-320-7009

Grandparents Day Photos

Professional photos taken on Grandparents Day will be available Oct. 10 for viewing and purchase—go to and enter:

Username:  noblesgp12
Password:  22507-92812

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If you have questions, comments or suggestions for this newsletter, email Kim Neal at