Nobles Parents' E-Newsletter

October 2014

Nobles Parents' Newsletter October 2014

More than the Moral Rationale for Honesty (and Vampire Bats) by John Gifford, Assistant Head of School; Head of Middle School



Evolutionary biology is fascinating.  I know that researchers can attribute the inheritance of behaviors in a way that is probably over the top, but there are times when it makes intuitive sense to me.  There is something nice about knowing that I get my hearty head of hair from my father and my attached earlobes from my mother. Those are the traits that are easy to see, but there are other better-veiled traits that humans have inherited – not only from their parents, but also from ancestors far further up the evolutionary path.

Some scientists believe that we have evolved into liars.

In the survival game, “fight or flight” is one of the most basic strategies.  Our genes kick in when we are confronted with danger, and we quickly decide whether to attack or to get away. That makes sense when you come across a bear in the woods, but the same instinct kicks in when we do something wrong – even when it is an honest mistake.  A middle school student, for example, throws a lacrosse ball in the Forum and it breaks a window. Their first instinct?  Nine out of 10 times they will scan the room to see who witnessed the accident and then put as much distance between themselves and the scene of the crime as is possible. They’d run.

The instinct is not to get into trouble - by whatever means necessary. When you are anonymous – out in the “real” world, people quite literally run. Consider the despicable person who doesn’t leave a note when they dent your car in the parking lot. They literally “run” in that case because they believe they can get away with it. The “flight” from the mistake is unlikely to be caught. But in a community, and certainly the Nobles community, it isn’t so easy. You are not anonymous. When you mess up on Monday, you still have to come to school on Tuesday. Many of the mistakes that play out in a middle school are in plain sight of an adult. So what is the better strategy to “run away” from a mistake? You lie.

Cue the middle schoolers who are struggling with honesty: “This is great! It isn’t my fault, lying is an evolutionary adaptation. It is part of survival of the fittest!” But there is a big problem with that thinking. The evolutionary biology does make lying understandable, but it doesn’t make it acceptable. Even more important than that, it doesn’t make it a good strategy. Why? Because we have also evolved to rely on a far more important dependency on our community. Lying threatens our ability to get support from the people we desperately need. For community support to work, we need to establish interdependence and trust. 

Let me tell you something about vampire bats. By our sensibilities, they are not the most beautiful creatures. We also might be a bit turned off by their culinary decisions; they eat the blood of sleeping warm-blooded animals. Tapirs are a popular choice. They make a small incision during the night and lap blood while it drip, drip, drips. The rainforest beast wakes up with a shaving knick and about a tablespoon less blood.

After the bat's meal, it goes back to the cave with its large community of other bats.  This is why we care about them: When one bat has had a good night and has drunk its fill of blood and another bat has had a terrible night and returns to the cave with an empty stomach, the successful bat will often feed the unsuccessful bat. He’ll certainly do so if the hungry bat is a relative, but if all the siblings are fine, he’ll next feed a bat who fed him before. It’s payback! It is an acknowledgement that the only way for some species to survive is to work with each other, support each other and trust each other.

Rats, too, that have in the past been helped by other rats are more likely to support a rat-in-need. In communities of bees, ants and naked mole rats, good behaviors can be rewarded and bad behaviors are sometimes punished. These animals share a characteristic: true, the fact is that most people find them frightening or disgusting. But also (like humans!), they are communal animals. They survive because they live and work together. Their community provides them protection both from the elements and from predators. In the case of bees and ants, they have evolved into “super organisms” where the supply of food only comes through a selfless collaborative effort.

Humans, too, are communal animals. We have evolved that way and we wouldn’t survive without the involvement of many of our kin. As Hillary made famous: it takes a village.

At Nobles, the sustenance of choice is not honey or blood, it is knowledge. Learning facts and skills is why we are here. It is the food of the mind and, like the vampire bat, we share it daily. While I am the first to admit that I learn a great deal from students, the primary flow of knowledge runs from the adults to the students. Here (finally) is where I circle back to the evolutionary rationale to be honest.

People consciously and subconsciously want to support those in the community that they trust. The bat shares a meal only with the peer that she trusts. When members of this community lie, in small or significant ways, it can diminish the trust between individuals. Without trust, the optimal conditions for a willing exchange could be hindered.

That said; please know that teachers understand that being honest is a learned behavior. It must be learned (rather than being a human’s “default”) because of the times in our evolutionary past when “flight” was the best survival strategy.  We are unfailingly forgiving and assume the best in all students. Teachers never write off a student who struggles to react appropriately when confronted. It is dealt with as an invaluable teachable moment.

I told the story of the vampire bat to the middle school last week. My goal was to gain their attention about a tired topic. They have been told many times about the ethical and moral implications of dishonesty, but never before did it include naked mole rats.That said, I think I saw only marginal success. While they certainly listened, the message that many took was that vampire bats drink a tablespoon of blood at one sitting.

Use my talk, and perhaps this piece, as a springboard for a conversation about honesty at home with your family.  We’ll continue to talk about it at school but as the example of bees, rats and bats suggest, making progress can take a full community effort.

 

Don't Miss the Fall Open House for Nobles Day Camp!



The fall festival is a fun family event hosted by the Nobles Day Camp. Great for all ages!  Free and open to the public!

The event will include:

   *A petting zoo
   *Live music 
   *Face painting
   *A fall craft
   *A bouncy house and slide
   *An obstacle Course and 5 Sport Station
   *Pumpkin Painting
   *Spin Art
   *Camp Tours

 

"The Arts” at Nobles



Welcome to “The Arts” at Nobles. Whether you have a child participating in one of the various disciplines or just enjoy a good performance, please mark the following dates on your calendar. 

This month:

Nobles Theatre Collective’s mainstage production of Luigi Pirandello’s Right You Are If You Think You Are. Tickets are available the day of the performance.
Wednesday, October 29, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Thursday, Ocotober 30, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Friday, October 31, 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 1, 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Coming in November:

Nobles Fall Dance Concert
Wednesday, November 12, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.
Thursday, November 13, 4:30 - 6:00 p.m.

Wrapping up the Fall Season in December:

Jazz/Blues/Guitar/Drum Concert
Thursday, December 4, 7:00 p.m.

Choral Concert
Thursday, December 11
Pre-Concert Parents Social 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Choral Concert 7:00 p.m.

The Future of Education by Kate Ramsdell, Director of College Counseling



When my August issue of The Atlantic arrived, its cover taunted, “Is College Doomed?” Having just made what I hoped would be a long-term career move back to college counseling following a 3-month maternity leave and a yearlong detour in the Dean of Students office, I wondered if I should just pack up my office and cut my losses. As serendipity would have it, a month into my new gig, I found myself sitting across from one of the August issue’s most controversial subjects: a representative from the Minerva Project. Minerva is a newly launched for-profit university backed by, among others, former Nebraska senator Bob Kerrey, Larry Summers, and the Keck Graduate Institute. If you’re interested in reading more, look here.

That Minerva exists as an option in higher education is not enough to upend most U.S. colleges and universities. However, the meeting got me thinking about the ways in which we ask our students to approach their Nobles education and, ultimately, their college searches.

What Minerva and its founders are challenging us to think about is this idea: traditional colleges and universities are not changing quickly enough to produce graduates with meaningful skills for the workplaces of the future. Minerva is committed to building a curriculum that does so, and to measuring every facet of the process and outcome so they can guarantee that by the time you graduate, your tuition will have secured more than what they see has become so much of the current American college experience: four years of football games, lecture classes with 300 of your closest friends, and acres of well-kept buildings and grassy quads. Not to mention the cost, which I have been warned will balloon to $100K per year by the time my own sons are of college age.

Nobles strikes a remarkable balance when it comes to preparing our students for whatever their futures may hold. We offer a variety of rigorous learning experiences that challenge our students in different ways – some in traditional seminar-style classrooms and labs, others on our performing arts stages and athletic fields, yet others at dozens of community service sites in the greater Boston area, and even further afield through the global experiential learning and travel opportunities we provide. Indeed, Nobles was also an early member of Global Online Academy (GOA), a consortium of independent schools committed to doing some of what Minerva is saying we should: pushing ourselves to think beyond the traditional constructs of academe in favor of a global, immersive, and interactive online learning experience.

Here, we know our strong partnerships with GOA and the dozens of other organizations to which our students have access, as well as our deep commitment to a relational pedagogy, will nurture within our graduates the ability to be successful in the world that awaits them beyond our own walls. Whether some of our students decide to add the Minervas of the world to their college lists is to be seen. Quite honestly, I’m excited by that prospect.

What made the summer’s “Is College Doomed?” moment all the more amusing was that it thrust me back almost two decades to my senior year in college. Having just spent my winter term learning “practical” and “career oriented” skills at a landscape architecture firm that, I hoped, would justify my BA in Art History, I eagerly awaited the arrival of my first issue of Landscape Architecture Magazine. As I slid it out of the mailbox in the student union, its pages unfurled in my hands, asking, “Is Landscape Architecture a Dying Profession?” It was at that point I made the very quick decision to change course, and somehow, that traditional, liberal arts education landed me in a career that I can’t imagine leaving any time soon.
 

Save the Date: Nobles Night



A festive evening to celebrate Nobles will be held Thursday, November 13, starting at 6:30 p.m.

Please note: This is not a student event.

For further information, contact Special Events Coordinator Katherine Minevitz at 781-320-7009 or katherine_minevitz@nobles.edu.

Want to reminisce about last year's festivities and the launch of the Be Nobles Bold campaign? See photos and read all about it here.

 

A Unique Morning Assembly by Bill Bussey, Provost



Many Nobles community members past and present would maintain that morning assemblies are the heart and soul of their Nobles experience. At the very least morning assemblies offer a keen reflection of the school’s current tone and culture, if not in what is presented onstage but how each presentation is received. Long assemblies allow us the time for greater access and insight into the world beyond our walls. To that end, on November 12, we will hold an assembly to examine the recent events in the Gaza Strip.

Over the two weeks prior this special long assembly, the History Department will take the helm through a series of all-school presentations. History instructors including History Chair Louis Barassi, Head of School Bob Henderson, Dean of Students Marcela Maldonado, Jen Carlson and Oris Bryant will be the presenters. Our hope is that these presentations will assist all students and faculty with a better understanding of the geographic area, the different groups involved, and especially of the factual and emotional complexity involving this part of the world. It is our desire to have both students and faculty prepared to take advantage of this special all-school opportunity.

Our two guest speakers will be foreign relations expert Robert Danin and journalist Rula Jebreal. They will be available in a number of settings afterwards for follow-up questions and discussions. We will record this event for your viewing, if interested.

Robert M. Danin is the Eni Enrico Mattei senior fellow for Middle East and Africa studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. He headed the Jerusalem mission of the Quartet representative, Tony Blair, from April 2008 until August 2010. A former career State Department official with more than 20 years of Middle East experience, Dr. Danin previously served as deputy assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs with responsibilities for Israeli-Palestinian issues and Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, and Egypt. He also served at the National Security Council for over three years, first as director for Israeli-Palestinian affairs and the Levant and then as acting senior director for Near East and North African affairs. A recipient of the State Department's Superior Honor Award, Dr. Danin served as a Middle East and Gulf specialist on the secretary of state's policy planning staff, and as a State Department senior Middle East political and military analyst. Prior to joining the State Department, he worked as a Jerusalem-based journalist covering Israeli and Palestinian politics.

Rula Jebreal is a renowned speaker and journalist, who became not only the first foreign anchorwoman in the history of Italian television but also earned the prestigious journalism award, the International Ischia Award for Best Journalist of the Year. She is a lifelong advocate for women’s rights and civil liberties in the Middle East. Born in Haifa, Israel, Jebreal grew up in Jerusalem during the first intifada in the 1980’s. After the suicide of her mother at age 5, her father placed her sister in the care of a remarkable Palestinian woman, whom Jebreal credits with saving her life as a surrogate mother and mentor. As a woman having lived and worked in various “hot zones” (Israel, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon), and having experienced first-hand the rise of the Islamist movement and the evolution of their relations with the West, Jebreal adds a unique perspective to the socio-political dialogue surrounding the Middle Eastern conflict.  Fluent in four languages, and a citizen of both the East and West, Jebreal acts as a cultural ambassador, bridging the gaps in knowledge and understanding that often hinder process and change.

Ms. Jabreal and Mr. Danin are no strangers to each other and in fact have held the stage together once before to discuss the Middle East. They are excited to get together once more and perhaps more excited to spend a day with us. They also are looking forward to having lunch with interested students, especially those from the Jewish Culture Club. 

I am looking forward to this assembly as much as any that I have been a part of in all my time at Nobles. While this assembly is not open to parents, I hope you will take the opportunity to keep the conversation going at home.

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From the Community Service Office



Here is a “snapshot” of the month ahead: jeans, books, get well cards, turkeys, and guacamole! The year is off to quick start.  Many student clubs, organizations, and classes are at work planning service projects and fundraisers. 

Campuses Against Cancer (CAC) kicks off the month with Denim Day on Friday, October 3.  Everyone in the community was invited to bring a donation to assembly in exchange for wearing jeans to school. Funds collected will support breast cancer programs and research.

The Alexandria Book Club (Upper School) will be collecting gently used books for Up Academy-Oliver in Lawrence and Rosie’s Place in Boston.  The book drive will kick off on October 8 with a bake sale in Gleason Hall. Collection bins will be in the library for the month of October. Young adult (Grade 6-8) and adult books needed. Thank you for clearing off your bookshelves!

On October 17 come to Gleason Hall to write a card to a child being treated for cancer at Children’s Hospital in Boston. This event is sponsored by faculty and students that volunteered at Camp Sunshine in New Hampshire this summer. 

The Office of Diversity Initiatives and the Multicultural Student Association (MSA) are preparing for the 13th Annual Thanksgiving Turkey Drive. Turkeys will be donated to our friends at Single Parent Family Outreach in Brookline. The MSA will sponsor an empanada sale in Gleason Hall on Tuesday, October 21.

Do you have a great recipe for guacamole? Students in Spanish 3 classes, the Spanish Club and EAC (Environmental Awareness Club) invite the community  to enter the First Annual “Guac-Off “on Wednesday October 29.* All proceeds will benefit San Juan du Sur- Nicaragua and Safe Passage in Guatemala. Both organizations work to improve health and education for children in Central America.

Watch for updates in the weekly parent email. Thank you for your support.

Class III Parent Reps



Class III - So nice to see so many of you at our Class III Fall Coffee! Jess Brennan (one of our two Class III Deans), was kind enough to join us and share her thoughts about sophomore year. 

Among other things, she said that 10th grade is a year of enormous growth, and reminded us that students "come into the year as freshmen and leave as juniors!" We have 14 new additions to the class this year. It might be fun to ask your son or daughter to tell you about his/her new classmates. 

Looking ahead, our Class III Parent Social is coming up on Friday, October 17. Please take a moment now to click view the invitation and RSVP. (You will be asked to log onto the Nobles website first): 

Future Class III happenings include: the Head of School Dance on March 7; Surprise Lunch on April 13 (shhhh!) ; Spring Parent Coffee on April 17; and Spring Parent Social on May 1.  As we get closer to these and other future events, we will post links to forms where you can sign up to help. As always, if you have any questions, ideas or suggestions, please feel free to contact us.

Anne Umphrey (anneumphrey@comcast.net)
Heidi McNeill (heidi.mcneill@gmail.com)

From the Co-Chairs: AE Rueppel and Brooke Sandford



Happy early fall!

We hope you are all feeling settled into the school routine, and were able to enjoy some of the PA events in September.  We were pleased to see so many of you at the Parents Association Fall Social.  Thank you to our organizers Kennie Grogan, Lynne McCarthy, and Janice Jester for a job well done!  Big thanks also to our Class IV Reps, Suzie Montgomery and Nathalie DuCrest, and Middle School Reps, Leslie Del Col, Erin Majernik, Wendy MacDonald and Leigh Poole, for hosting wonderful parent socials for their classes.  Continuing thanks, of course, to all the reps who have been hard at work organizing a fabulous year, including an awesome Surprise Breakfast (Class I) and coffees (Classes I and III) in September.  Lastly, thanks to their team of volunteers and Eloise Patterson and Michele Abrecht for helping to ensure another happy and memorable Grandparents Day!

Next PA Meeting

We encourage all parents, but especially new parents, to join us for our next PA meeting at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, October 16 in the Castle Library. To start things off, we will enjoy a quick visit with our newly named Head of Upper School Michael Denning.  Michael will share goals for the year ahead, and experiences from his 17 years at Nobles.  Following Michael, upper school counselors Mark Spence and Mary Batty along with middle school counselor Jen Hamilton will join us to talk about the services they offer, the challenges that students are facing, the groups that are available, and how mindfulness is being implemented in the PD curriculum. In addition, they will speak to where adolescents are developmentally, and how it affects the way they think, interact and behave.

It promises to be a great morning, and the coffee will be flowing—see you there!

Special October Happenings

Spectacular weather and several Nobles wins made the first PA athletics cookout of the season on September 20 a huge success!

What an informative evening listening to Po Bronson speak about his book Top Dog: The Science of Winning and Losing. It certainly gave us food for thought. Are you interested in discussing some of those topics further? What did you think about the book?  Please join us for an informal book discussion on Monday, October 6 at 8:00 am in the Castle Library. Gretchen Filoon and Lee Rubin Collins are kicking off the PA series of book discussions that morning while Mr. Bronson’s talk is fresh in our minds.  All parents are welcome to attend, whether or not you have read the book.

Also happening on Monday mornings – our PA cross country walks!  Meet parents for conversation and fresh air as you stroll Nobles’ cross country trails. Meet promptly after drop off (and pop in to the book discussion later if you wish).

If you feel like venturing further afield for crisp fall air and conversation, do not miss the PA Parents’ Outing on Tuesday, October 21. Helen Goins and Cindy Jaczko will treat us to a walking tour of Concord, including Monument Square and Sleepy Hollow.

Interested in some indoor culture?  A sure bet for entertainment is the Nobles Theatre Collective Fall Mainstage Play, Right You Are If You Think You Are, with performances October 29 through November 1.  Support the cast and crew, and be sure to catch a performance. You’ll be glad you did!

Several class-specific events occur in October – the Class II Parent Coffee took place October 1, the Class IV Parent Coffee Thursday, October 9, the Class III Parent Social on Friday, October 17 (RSVP by Friday, October 10), and the Middle School Parent Coffee Thursday, October 23.

In case it’s helpful, a recap of October dates:

Mondays – PA Cross country walks immediately following drop off*
October 6 – Parent Book discussion of Top Dog by Po Bronson*
October 7 – Travel and Study Abroad Evening
October 9 – Class IV Parent Coffee*
October 10 – Multicultural Fair
October 10 – RSVPs due for Class III Parent Social*
October 13 – Columbus Day (no school)
October 14 – College Process Workshop for Class II Parents
October 16 – PA Meeting*
October 17 – Class III Parent Social*
October 17 – Parents Independent School Network (PIN) lecture at St. Sebastian’s*
October 18 – PSAT’s for Class II Students
October 21 – Parent Outing to Concord*
October 23 – Middle School Parent Coffee*
October 24 – Friday Night Lights
October 27 – Comment Writing Day (no school)
October 28 – Paying for College Evening
October 29 – 31 Fall Mainstage Play
October 31 – Halloween/Class I Surprise Lunch*

*PA Event

Request for Volunteers/information

Would you like to learn more about and support the school’s initiatives on sustainability and environmentalism?  Join the parents’ “Green Team”.  Please email AE or Brooke to express your interest.

Is there a topic or speaker you would like to see at a PA meeting?  Any other suggestions for PA initiatives?  Please let us know!


With warmest regards,

AE Rueppel
(aerueppel@comcast.net)

Brooke Sandford
(brooke.sandford@gmail.com)

Parents Association Co-Chairs
 

Class IV Parent Reps



Dear Class IV Parents and Guardians,

What a great turnout for our fall parents' events! It was wonderful to welcome so many new friends (and to reconnect with old ones) at the Fall Social, as well as Back to School Night in September. Our children seem to be transitioning well into freshman year, making new friends and keeping up with old ones.

October promises to be another busy month – please mark your calendars with the events listed below. As always, feel free to contact us with any questions.

Thursday, Oct. 9 – Class IV Coffee, Castle Study, 8:15-9 a.m.
Friday, Oct. 10 – Multicultural Fair
Monday, Oct. 12 – Columbus Day (school closed)
Thursday, Oct. 16 – Parents' Association Meeting, 8:15-9:30 a.m.
Monday, Oct. 27 – Comment Writing Day (no classes)

Warmly,
Suzie Montgomery, s.montgomery33@comcast.net
Nathalie Ducharest, ducrest.latour@gmail.com
 

Class II Dean's Report



The school year is off to an excellent start. First of all, we have welcomed six wonderful new students to the Class of 2016. From the first day of the retreat, everyone seems to have adjusted well from the slower pace of the summer months to the quickened one of the school year. There is obviously a period of adjustment that everyone goes through, but we have yet to see any students who have had much difficulty adjusting to the demands of the academic rigors. If that changes for any of our students, we will be sure to let you know.

As the students have returned to Nobles and have begun their Class II experience, one of our hopes is that they will become better advocates for themselves as they develop greater ownership of their experiences at Nobles. Please join us in encouraging students to reach out to their teachers early on to begin to forge relationships with them. We, along with the college counselors, advisors and the Dean of Students, are here to offer additional layers of support and guidance. As we told the class before retreats began, how these last two years go for them, as individuals and as a class, is largely up to them. They will have to balance the drive for individual achievement with the needs of the other members of their various groups-- their academic classes, their teams, and yes, their families.

Additionally, our hope is that they understand that they will only be able to work to their fullest potential if they are well rested and healthy. We fully understand that the students have a lot to do, sometimes too much, but they need to be reminded that their bodies and their brains need rest in order to function optimally. If they can plan ahead, stay organized and prioritize their efforts, we know they will not only survive, but thrive. Clear and honest communication goes a long way. We ask it of them and of you. And we promise the same in return.

We have really enjoyed the opportunity to meet this class and are excited to have the opportunity to work with them throughout the course of the year. Of course, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Enjoy the autumn months.


Sincerely yours,

Brian Day and Julia Russell

Class II Deans
 

Class I Parent Reps



The 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 connecting with many of you at Back to School Night and our parent coffee. October is a busy month at Nobles, especially for our seniors.  We have highlighted some important dates below; those that are particular to Class I are listed in bold.

• Mon., Oct. 6, 8:00 a.m. – Po Bronson book discussion

• Tues., Oct. 7, 7:00 p.m. – Travel & Study Away Parent Info Meeting

• Fri., Oct. 10, 3:00 p.m. - Multicultural Fair

• Mon., Oct. 13 - Columbus Day - no school (a good day for college visits)

• Thurs., Oct. 16, 8:00 a.m. - Parents’ Association Meeting

• Mon., Oct. 27 - Comment Writing Day - no classes (another good day for college visits)

• Tues., Oct. 28, 7:00 p.m. – Paying for College: MEFA Seminar

• Wed., Oct. 29, 6:30 p.m. – NTC Fall Mainstage Production opens

• Fri., Oct. 31 - Class I Halloween Surprise Lunch for students

• Sat., Nov. 1 - Deadline for parent congratulatory yearbook ads

You can find information about all these events on www.nobles.edu.

Thanks to those of you who have already helped make our events successful; there are many more volunteer opportunities on the horizon.  Next up is the Halloween Surprise Lunch on Oct. 31. If you are interested, please contact any of us by email or by clicking on the link in the Class News section of the Weekly Parent Email.

Remember to join SignUpGenius to make volunteering even easier!

Enjoy October!

Lynda Ceremsak (ceremsak@comcast.net)

Carolyn Harthun (harthun@verizon.net)

Anne Kelley (anneckelley@comcast.net)
 

Class II Parent Reps



Dear Class II Parents and Friends,

It was so nice to see so many of you at Back to School Night.  We hope you and your children have settled into the new routine - the year is off to a running start. 

Class II students are starting to see the road ahead and might be filled with expectations and some anxiety about this academic year. We are in good hands with the faculty and staff at Nobles, but we also can help each other out during this important year for our students.  Our class has some nice flexibility with various opportunities to support our students during some of the “crunch” times of junior year. If you have any suggestions about how we can support them and/or would like to volunteer to help, please let us know!

We hope you participate in the upcoming gatherings, and we will do our best to communicate upcoming events.

Below is a list of important upcoming dates for Class II.

Workshop on the College Process
Tuesday, Oct. 14, 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. in Towles Auditorium
This workshop is designed to help explain the timeline and expectations of the college process during the next 18 months. You should have received an email requesting that you RSVP to this event. Questions? Please contact Kimya Charles.

PSAT at Nobles
Saturday, Oct. 18, 7:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Both registration for and administration of this test will take place at Nobles for all Class II students.

Looking ahead…

Class II Parent Social
Friday, Nov. 21, 7:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Join other Class II parents for an evening of cocktails and conversation. All socials are held on campus, and our evening will be held in the Castle Upper Dining Room. Please contact either of us if you would like to help plan the party.

Our role as Class II reps includes strengthening connections between parents, serving as a liaison to the school, and providing support to our students.  Volunteer forms can be found in the Parent section of the Nobles website if you would like to sign up to help with Class II events.

Enjoy the beautiful fall weather!

Class II Parent Reps

Betsy Dawson
bgdaws@comcast.net

Lauren Doherty
laurendoherty@comcast.net

 

Middle School Parent Reps



We hope that the school year has gotten off to a great start for you and your children. It was nice to see so many of you at the annual Parents’ Association Fall Social, the first PA meeting and Back-to-School Night. We thank those who worked to bring us these great events.

October is a busy month in the Middle School, filled with sports, drama productions, student and parent social activities, and several opportunities for parents to get involved.

We hope that you will join us for the Middle School Coffee on Oct. 23 at 8:00 a.m. at the Castle. Our guest speaker will be Middle School Dean Colette Finley. The coffee is a low-key chance to chat with fellow middle school parents. For new “Sixie” parents, it’s the perfect time to mingle and ask any questions, big or small, of the Class V parents. We will also have sign-up sheets for volunteer opportunities throughout the year for anyone who is interested.

All sports teams will be in full swing in October. The Middle School Social/Friday Night Lights on Oct. 24 are not to be missed. The varsity field hockey team and the varsity boys soccer team will play Lawrence Academy under the lights. Go Bulldogs!

Also note, on game days, some middle school teams surprise each other during school with a small, secret “psych” gift (e.g., candy bar, small baked good or other treat). Make sure to ask your child if she or he has a secret psych buddy.

Lastly, Halloween is a Friday this year, and for those who are new, students are encouraged to dress up in costume, however, no group costumes are permitted.
Below you will find a comprehensive list of important dates for October.

October 2014

Thurs. October 2, Class VI Student/Mentor Pizza Dinner from 6:15-7:15 pm, pick up at the Middle School.

October 3-5, Early dismissals for Friday game times will be announced by the Athletic Department during the week of September 29th. This is also Middle School No Homework Weekend.

Fri. October 10, Multicultural Fair at Richardson Gym from 3-6 pm.

Mon. October 13, Columbus Day. School closed.

Sat. October 18, Admission Open House: 9:00 a.m.-noon.

Mon. October 20, Middle School Long Advisory in the afternoon. Middle School Afternoon Program will not take place. Students and their advisors will be off campus for fun group activities! Pick up by 5:15 p.m. at Pratt Middle School.

Th. October 23, Middle School Parent Coffee at 8:00 a.m. in Castle Library.

Th. October 23, Noble Flu Clinic in Morrison Forum, 9:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

Fri. October 24, Middle School Social - Friday Night Lights! Nobles varsity field hockey vs. Lawrence Academy on Turf Field and boys varsity soccer vs. Lawrence Academy on Wayne Field.

Mon. October 27, Comment Writing Day. School closed.

Tues. October 28, Faculty Meeting in Forum: No middle school Afternoon Program. Students are dismissed at the end of the academic day at 2:40 p.m.

Wed. October 29, Middle school advisor/advisee Meetings to discuss first quarter grades and comments, starting at 2:45 p.m. No middle school Afternoon Program. Students are dismissed after their individual advisor meetings.

October 30-November 1, Nobles Theatre Collective, Fall Mainstage Play, Right You Are If You Think You Are, Vinik Theatre at 6:30 p.m.

Fri. October 31, Halloween. Costumes are encouraged -- however, no group costumes, please.

We look forward to seeing you at many of these great events.  Please let us know if we can provide any additional information or answer any questions.

Leigh Miller Poole (sleighmiller@comcast.net)-Class V
Wendy MacDonald (wwmacdonald@yahoo.com)-Class V
Leslie Del Col (cldelcol@gmail.com)-Class VI
Erin Majernik (esmajernik@me.com)-Class VI

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Dedham, Massachusetts
02026
tel: 781.326.3700
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If you have questions, comments or suggestions for this newsletter, email Kim Neal at kim_neal@nobles.edu.