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News from Evergreen School

Green Ink Winter Journal, 2011-2012

At a Glance:

Traits in Abundance:

Rain Garden wins environmental award from Montgomery County. Library expands with 39 new picture books donated at The Winter Festival. Brain Scientists extol the virtues of a Montessori education. Int’l Children’s  Day— celebrates our families traditions from around the globe.

The Inside Scoop: Rain Garden Receives Award


We’re on  Facebook!


Better Brains


Evergreen Renovates


Classroom News


Int’l Children’s  Day


Meet John DeMarchi


Winter Festival


Green Certification


New Camp Programs


Reflections from the Head of School “So tell  me  about  Ev-­ ergreen...”    I have been slipping this question into conversations with parents, teachers and past parents since July. I soon recognized a pattern to their answers: most talked about the warmth and kindness that they feel in the school community. Parents told me about the gentleness of teachers, their compassion, their patience and

their passion for teaching. Parents are spot on. I have seen these traits in abundance. What I heard most often: Evergreen is a special place. Children are known and cared for. It is a loving school.

ents, teachers, the board, and administration) that all our children deserve to learn in a classroom that respects their ability to make decisions, to act with independence, and to use their senses (Continued on page 6)

As a newcomer, I realize that we should not take the character of Evergreen for granted. The schools special identity arises from the shared belief (among par-

Rain Garden Receives County Prize Adults like to work in a garden as much as children like to play on a playground. We learned this when the entire school community celebrated when their rain garden won a top honor at the its

25th annual Keep Montgomery County Beautiful (KMCB) award ceremony held by The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) on October 19. The contest was de-

signed to encourage those in Montgomery County to undertake landscape activities and neighborhood beautification projects that improve the overall appearance of the County. (Continued on page 19)

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Evergreen and Social Media How do you keep up with Evergreen news? In the past, parents relied on the Weekly Bulletin to be printed and distributed every Monday. Now they count on  the  ‘greenletter,   our weekly electronic newsletter to arrive in their inbox. But there is an even better way to stay in touch: social media. There is a new post on our Facebook and Twitter feeds nearly every day. You will be the

first on your block to know about the latest from Evergreen. If you search for our official page on Facebook, be sure to  put  ‘Silver  Spring’   in the search. As part of our foray into social media, the school adopted guidelines to keep  children’s  names   protected at all time. The use of student photos is limited to those whose parents have signed our photo restriction policy.

And finally, if you want to hear even more from Evergreen, Mr. DeMarchi is a regular blogger on the Wheaton Patch website. Mr. DeMarchi has said, “Patch is  a  great  way  to   give Evergreen a voice in the community. And with so many people connecting to us through our website, it is nice to have additional online presence.

Kicking Off the Year: Evergreen Traditions The school year began at Evergreen much the way it has for the past 47 years. New students tentatively walk into their classrooms, anxious parents in hand. Endof-summer haircuts and new clothes make everyone look extra sharp. Some tears flow. Ms. Liotta and all the Evergreen teachers are there to reassure everyone. Returning student reach out to welcome newcomers. Nerves are calmed. And off we go... In addition to the continuity of our Montessori curriculum and veteran faculty, Evergreen held many of the same traditional fall events that you remember. Can you recall the first time some one explained how a Montessori education works? If you were lucky, that person was Ms. Liotta, who started her 28th year at Evergreen this fall. New parents were introduced to the relationship between sensorial learning and math development at Montessori University— now Montessori Basics— in September. The workshop was led by Ms. Lourdes, Mrs. Basturescu, Mrs. Hatziyannis, and of course, Ms. Liotta.  As  one  father  said,  “I  never  knew  there   was so much to all this. Now I know why my wife wanted my son to come to Evergreen.”

Do you remember these Evergreen traditions? Observation Days Classroom Thanksgiving Feasts Fall Festival (can you believe this year it was rained, then snowed out?) Montessori University International Children’s Day Field Trips to the Farm Library class Circle Time & Show and Tell Winter Festival

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Neurologist Steve Hughes on the Brainy Benefits of Montessori It is not surprising that Steve Hughes is huge fan of Montessori education. After all, it is his job to understand how growing brains work. He is a pediatric neuropsychologist and assistant professor of pediatrics in Pediatric Clinical Neurosciences at the University of  Minnesota.  Hughes    says,  “My  re-­ search is directed at identifying social and emotional rearing environments that help to build better brains. We're not just interested in intelligence—we're interested in emotional wellbeing and social functioning, too. Although trying to build better brains is a huge task, Hughes is undaunted.  “This  is  a  great  time  in   history to be in the brain business,”  he  says.   “Neuroscience  is  opening  a   wider window into how brains work, and we think we can figure out how aspects of the environment can help brains work better.”   To raise independent, thinking children, Hughes advocates leaving the traditional model of education behind. He says that ‘school  1.0’  is  character-­ ized by children being told what to do and think by adults. School 2.0, on the other hand looks like a Montessori classroom: children engaging in learn-

What Neurologists say:

ing by doing; using their hands and enggrossed in experimental interactions with the environment.    He  says,  “Maria  Mon-­ tessori knew before it was proved by neuroscience that cognition and movement  are  intertwined.”  Now  it  is  a  point   of fact in the scientific community. Hughes pointed out the benefits of Montessori not only include better hand-eye coordination and visual-spatial problem solving skills, but also executive function skills and social development. Hughes spoke to Evergreen teachers Mr. Bingcang, Ms. Tobin, Ms. Liotta, Mrs. Dahmas, Mr. DeMarchi and an audience of Montessori advocates from across Montgomery County at a presentation at Crossways Community Center in December. His presentation is online at www.

“Montessori education   is the embodiment of all I learned while studying for a Ph.D. in Child  Development.”   —Fiona Anderson, Ph.D. Assistant Professor in the Division of Pediatric Clinical Neuroscience, University of Minnesota

“It’s like  education   designed by a gifted pediatric neuropsychologist” —Steve Hughes, Ph.D.

“That’s where  my  kid  is   going  to  school!” —Terry Harrison, Ph.D. Penn State University

“By the  end  of   kindergarten, among 5year-olds,  ‘Montessori   students proved to be significantly better prepared for elementary school in reading and math skills than the nonMontessori  children.’”   —Jonah Lehrer, neuroscience author of How We Decide

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Evergreen Makeover: School Edition One of the most vexing challenges facing Evergreen has been how to best use our space within Hughes Church. This summer, the school solved some of the longstanding issues by moving offices, building walls and bringing a  decorator’s  eye  to  the  building.    If  you  haven’t   been to the school in a while, now is the time to visit. In August, the Head of School office was moved downstairs. Mr. DeMarchi said,  “The  ex-­ citement of the school takes place on the first floor. That is where  I  need  to  be.”    To  make   space for his office, the faculty room was relocated to the camp office space. A contractor built a wall to partition the faculty room to make room for a new camp space. A fresh coat of paint—in the office and butterfly bathroom completed the renovation.

instruments that the school owns. The room is also used for parent meetings, faculty meetings and enrichment classes. What is new in the Main Office? Everything (except for Mrs. Buenaflor). Thanks to a generous gift of gorgeous furniture from the Jagannathan family, Evergreen received an office makeover. Step into the reception area now and you will be welcomed to sit on one of our new waiting area loveseats across from a new reception desk. Evergreen also received office chairs, computers, shelving and more. Pictures were rehung and the heirloom 1996 Evergreen quilt adorns the fresh white walls.

Nothing welcomes

visitors to Evergreen

School more than living Evergreens growing at the entrance.

In addition, the school received a gift of four new boxwoods, marigolds and  landscaping  along  the  sidewalk  that  lead’s   to the front door. Nothing welcomes visitors to EverThe office move left space on the third floor for a new music room. We are in the process of developing a music green more than Evergreens! curriculum that takes advantage of the treasure trove of

The faculty room was relocated across the hall into the former camp office space. A new table, chairs, and computer make the room a cozy place for lunch.

The stairwell entrance was enhanced with a new bulletin board sign and pictures that lead visitors toward the main office on the first floor.. Jeana Foley, parent of Oliver (elementary) created hand-printed Evergreen pennants to add to the festive entrance.

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Seeing is Believing: Montessori in Action One of the joys of spending time in a school like Evergreen is watching children completely immersed in learning. Evergreen parents saw that intensity of concentration during recent classroom observation days. On these days, parents are invited in to watch the classroom in action. While it takes considerable restraint to sit and quietly observe without intervening, interrupting or disrupting—the act of observation is key. This is how we come to know each child. And by  understanding  the  child’s  interests,   needs, and ability, we are able to provide the right instruction, direction and support.

demonstrating growth, and (3) enjoying his or her experience? These three simple questions, in a nutshell, are our highest goals—concentrated effort, progress and passion for learning. It’s a  beautiful  thing  to  see.

What were our parents looking for on observation day? What did they want to find out? They focused on three things: was their child (1) engaged in learning, (2)

After School Enrichment What happens after 3:00 pm dismissal? Everything. In addition to the extended day program, Evergreen offers over 25 elective classes each year. This year, classes have included ballet, yoga, nature club, cooking, drama, music, scrapbooking and more. Specialist teachers from the area and Evergreen teachers lead these dynamic programs. Pictures below are from the culminating performance of ballet led by the Wheaton School of Dance. Do you have an idea for an afterschool class? Contact program coordinator Caroline Maffry (

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Securing Our Future: The For’Ever Fund Evergreen kicked off an annual giving campaign called The  For’Ever  Fund  in October. The fund supports school programs that tuition does not cover. Special programs like library, Spanish and music depend on annual giving because, like all independent schools, tuition does not cover our annual expenses. Another program that depends on annual giving to the For’Ever  Fund  is professional development. Evergreen teachers are eager to continue to learn about trends in education. According to Auction Co-chair Ronda Kent,  “Our veteran faculty – experts in Mon-

tessori education – are committed to helping each of our children reach his or her fullest potential. By giving to the For’Ever Fund, we support our school, our teachers, and our community in a critical endeavor – preparing our children to be independent thinkers, lifetime learners, and responsible citizens in an ever-changing world. The campaign is off to an awesome start. Thus far, we have received $15,305— we are over 70% of our way toward our goal of $20,000. And while a large total amount is important to the school, we value a high participation level. Why is participation so important? Participation demonstrates solidarity within the Evergreen community. It also indicates to outside donors, such as corporations, foundations, and school friends, that those who are most connected  to  the  school  are  indeed  committed  to  it  and  are  involved  in  the  school’s  future  well-being. Therefore, all gifts, no matter what size, are tremendously important and benefit us all. If you have questions about the fund, contact John DeMarchi or Lourdes Buenaflor.

Alumni News? Calling Past Students: Let us know what you have been up to. Send us an email or join us on Facebook.    We’ll   share your news here. Your Evergreen classmates and friends want to know what you have been doing!

Head’s Message (Continued from page 1)

in order to understand the world around them. These ideas are the roots of our mission and purpose. They may seem obvious to us within the Evergreen community, but in the wider world of education, they are radical. Across the country, schools are still places where adults force round pegs of childhood through square pegs of education. The result: boredom and frustration at best; alienation and hopelessness at worst. It is such a joy for me to be in such a self-selected community of adults who believe, like me, in the inherent inner light of children. It is a joy to be a part of a community that works so well together to make a wonderful place for children. A place where there is such learning in abundance. In my first update from Evergreen, you will find stories on what has been happening here. I am so glad to have you as part of our family. I welcome all past friends of the school to visit me campus or connect with me by email ( Regards, John

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Snapshots from Evergreen Mrs. Hatziyannis, her family and new baby. Alumna Francesca Macri & John DeMarchi Mrs. Tracy McKenna presenting Int’l  Children’s   Day Mr. Janek Claus with daughter, Avery, during International Children’s  Day. Mrs. Buenaflor helps create traditional Filipino Christmas lantern. Ms. Liotta teaches Montessori Basics Ms.  Tobin’s  field  trip  to   the Orchard Lunch  in  Ms.Tobin’s   classroom

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Toddler News

By Mrs. Basturescu December 11, 2011 The Toddlers are getting to be quite experimental with food - in a good way! During Fruits and Vegetables Week they all tried kiwi. Almost everyone liked it (except one). At least that one child was brave enough to try it! Children also really enjoyed searching for the "jewels" (berries) inside a pomegranate and eating them. Six of the eight children tried and liked the pomegranate and even asked for more! They also have been learning the names of various fruits and vegetables— there are very few that they don't know. The next time you are in the grocery store, ask your child to find a cantaloupe or eggplant. You may be surprised at what else they can name while they are looking! Native Americans Week just ended. We made lovely rattles decorated with beads and feathers as well as totem poles, canoes, and beautiful Native American headdresses. The children wore headdresses, pilgrim hats and bonnets during our Thanksgiving feast. We celebrated a few birthdays in December. Khayal, Jacquelyn, and Qynn are now three years old and Mrs. B. is another year older as well. Congratulations to all! As a result of birthday celebrations, we have had so many sweets lately. Sometimes it seems there has been a constant rush of sugar in the classroom since Halloween! We love our wonderful birthday parties, but we will be grateful for a Thanksgiving feast devoid of sweets! Our parent/teacher conferences went really well. Thank you to everyone for taking the time to meet with Ms. Lynn and me. We always enjoy the time that we get to spend speaking with parents and we love the little tidbits you tell us about your children. They never cease to amaze us with their newly learned skills, their joy, and their fascination with the world around them. You all have wonderful, enthusiastic children and this year is so much fun! I appreciate all those who helped with holiday parties or Winter Festival.

Thank you to Natalie (Annelise) for preparing our Thanksgiving feast and party! The children made beautiful pine cone turkeys and turkey finger puppets and ate the stew they had prepared the day before. Then they had juice and sugar cookies. It was a lot of fun and the adults enjoyed it as much as the children!

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By Mrs. Liotta and Mrs. Soraya December 5, 2011 Before Thanksgiving  each  child  assembled  an  “environmental”  turkey.    Pine  cones  were  transformed   into gobblers with the additions of a decorated head and a lot of paper feathers. The classroom has a new set of language cards and new phonetic objects. Now that walnuts in the shell are in stores, we have a nut cracking exercise. Donovan is now 4 years old. We celebrated his birthday on the 30th with the proper number of walks around the sun. He is absolutely tickled to reach the grand old age of 4 (big!).

By Ms. Tobin and Ms. Portillo December 5, 2011 Every area of our classroom reflects our ongoing continent study of Asia! Objects (bamboo, panda, origami, etc) have been added to the Language shelves to be spelled using the moveable alphabet letters. Catherine loaned a Chinese coin to our classroom international coin collection. The Sensorial shelves include tangram puzzles and origami projects. As an art project, the children had the opportunity to trace and copy Chinese calligraphy. We read several stories about the beloved Asian animal, the panda bear! We discussed the difference between fiction and non-fiction, and categorized our classroom panda books into appropriate groups. Your child will impress you with many recently acquired panda facts. For example, a panda is an endangered animal, does not have a thumb, makes a sound similar to a sheep, and eats bamboo 16 hours a day. The children continue to care (Continued on page 17)

Primary News

We have begun lessons on this month's holiday celebrations. On December 1, we began opening the doors on our Advent calendar. Soon after we started lighting candles on our menorah. Next week, Arlen (Donovan) is coming in to lead a cooking project of a Nicaraguan traditional corn sweet dish called guirila. Carol (Pau and Eric) will be coming to class for a presentation of the Catalan Christmas tradition Caga Tio. She will also be leading a winter craft project. Lourdes (Luis) will make a presention about parol, a hich a traditional Filipino decoration of a five point star-shaped Christmas lantern. It symbolizes the star of Bethlehem that guided the Three Wise Men on their way in search of Baby Jesus. We will also have a Hanukah presentation.

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Elementary News

By Ms. Barden November 26, 2011 Thanksgiving is behind us and we are on the Polar Express heading toward the Festivals of Light! Our Thanksgiving celebration and Wopila were peaceful and caring. Students and parents did a wonderful job bringing all of the different pieces together so we could honor each other and be thankful for the great abundance in our lives. Thank you to everyone who contributed to our celebration and special big thanks to Iris and Brian (Socorro) for the vision and organization of our feast. Just before our celebration, we managed to fit in making salt maps of countries or states in North America. Ms. Jeana (Oliver) came in and worked individually with students to help them form  their  maps.    If  you’re   not familiar with the term salt map,  it’s  basically  a  clay  map  of   the landforms of a particular geographical area using clay made from salt and flour. Thus the term salt map! Thank you to Jeana for introducing us to this wonderful idea, and for helping the children with their creations. This week, Mrs. Hatziyannis gave students the First Great Lesson. As usual, students were riveted to the presentation  and  couldn’t  wait  to  dive  into  the  details   of each of the developmental stages of the universe, our solar system and earth. We will continue our studies in these areas as the year progresses. Soon, we will leave behind North America and begin to focus on Europe. We will use the Festivals of Light as a starting point for our exploration. Our intention is to have a variety of presenters come into the classroom and share about each festival. This year we are focusing specifically on European Festivals. We currently have a presenter for Hanukah and are looking for other people to talk about St. Nicholas, St. Lucia Day, Christmas, Epiphany, and the Celtic Solstice. Mrs. Hatziyannis had a baby girl last Thursday! We are going to really miss her! Our class wishes you well Mrs. Hatziyannis!

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International Children’s Day: We (really) are the World When Evergreen  celebrates  International  Children’s  Day,  we  touch   every corner of the globe. That is because every corner of the globe is represented by our student and parent body. We have over 16 different nationalities represented in our families. Over 40% of our students are non-Caucasian. Bob Mattingly, Director of Accreditation at the Association of Independent Maryland Schools cites Evergreen as the most diverse independent school in the state. Evergreen is proud of its multiculturalism—so celebrating our families heritage  on  ICD  is  one  of  the  highlights  of  the  year.    This  year’s   event included special parent presentations, food, clothing, dance and a flag parade around campus. Also  on  October  28,    elementary  students  celebrated  their  families’   cultural  heritage  by  presenting  ‘culture  boxes.’  These  boxes  con-­ tained artifacts and stories from a member of their family. Each box was lovingly crafted to honor someone important  in  each  child’s  life.    Oral  presentations  to   family and friends were a wonderful opportunity for each student to share something meaningful with them. This year, parents joined our classrooms to celebrate the following cultures: Scotland—Ms. Jennifer Rusiecki (mother of Calum Jagannathan, Primary) India— Mr. Vikram Ramachandran (father of Arjun, Primary) Madagascar— Mrs. Tracy McKenna (mother of Thea, Primary) Germany— Mr. Janek Claus (father of Avery, Primary) Poland— Ms. Danisha Crosby (mother of Jacqueline, Toddler) Countries of Africa— Ms. Hajira Shariff (mother of Gabriel, Primary) MORE: Our celebration of cultural heritage did not end on ICD. Students continue to celebrate throughout this holiday season. For example, parents, such as Mrs. Maset (Pau and Eric), Mrs. Buenaflor (Luis), Mrs.  O’Neill  (Hannah), Mrs. Salazar (Donovan) and Mrs. Goldman (Joshua and Emily Klein) have presented holiday projects that represent their cultures with students in December.

Blog Entry: OCTOBER 28, 2011

You can’t  put  together  a  jigsaw  puzzle  of  the   world with a piece missing. At Evergreen, there are many pieces to our global education puzzle. In addition to culture studies, map skills, flag projects and Spanish language instruction, the most important puzzle piece is the diversity of our multicultural family community. It was such an honor to share in their traditions  during  our  International  Children’s  Day   Celebration on Friday. Without a doubt, our children are benefitting from the richness of their Evergreen experience. Here, global education is about providing sufficient perspective on the world so students come to appreciate the complexity and interconnectedness of the world around them. That is why our students approach different cultural practices with curiosity, not judgment. And we fit together like small pieces in one giant, complete puzzle.

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Meet our New Head of School: A Conversation with John DeMarchi John arrived at Evergreen this summer after spending the past ten years as Associate Head of School at the Woods Academy in  Bethesda.    At  Woods,  John’s  responsibilities   included  overseeing  the  school’s  academic  and  cocurricular program, and working with county government and school neighbors to expand the school. He played key roles in Strategic Planning and helped carry out a $1M renovation of the building.

atmosphere of the community. Mornings are my favorite example. We all know it is not easy for children to transition from home to car to school. The relaxed atmosphere in  the  morning  starts  everyone’s  day  off  right… There is so little carpool stress. Within five minutes everyone is off to work. That is new for me, and a huge treat. Another thing I love is seeing parents  ‘liking’  our  posts  on  Facebook.     Communication is important to me. We all have so little time to read— but we all want to know what is going on.

John graduated from Kenyon College where he majored in Political Science and Studio Art. He received his M.Ed. From John Carroll University. In addition to teaching at Cincinnati Country Day School, John taught at Concordia International School Shanghai and Hong Kong International School.

What are you most excited about at Evergreen?

John’s family  includes  his  wife,  Jane,   and children Jacob (age 13) and Isabel (age 10). Jane works at the National Association of Wheat Growers and represents farmers issues in Washington. John’s  blogs  are  available  from  the   Evergreen homepage and he is frequently a guest contributor in the Wheaton Patch Online. He is interested in reading, cooking, cycling and writing. What have you found most striking during your first months at Evergreen?

JOHN “it is  not  easy  for  children   to transition from home to car to school. The relaxed atmosphere in the morning starts everyone’s  day  off  right…     especially  mine!”

More than anything, it is the quality of the academic program. Whenever I am in a classroom, learning is happening. It starts with the quality of the Evergreen teachers . Montessori is fundamentally about classrooms of focused, self-directed children. The concentration I see in the children is remarkable. I wish my children had continued in a Montessori classroom beyond age 6. How has your transition been?

What continues to be remarkable to me is the welcoming

Evergreen is such a busy place, given its size. The morale among teachers and parents is higher than I have experienced anywhere else. And there is a school life that extends long beyond the school day. From festivals to rain garden projects to PAC meetings to auction planning and  parents’  night  out,   there  is  constant  energy.    It  wouldn’t   be  happening  if  there  wasn’t  a  large   group of people who care deeply about the school. Where do you see the school growing?

With such a fan base, Evergreen has so many opportunities ahead. One thing on my mind is making the best possible use of the spaces we have in the building. For example, the science room on the third floor holds a lot  of  potential.  If  you  didn’t  notice,   I like decorating. I want the school to look warm and inviting from the moment you step inside. We have a great partner in Hughes Church. They want us to be successful as much as we do. I look forward to continuing to talk with them and sharing the joy of Evergreen with new students and families.

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Weather Wonderland: Winter Festival Clearly, we needed a weatherman at our Winter Festival this year. The weather changed from snowy to windy to rainy to sunny inside the gym. Keeping with the theme “Weather Wonderland,”  class  perfor-­ mances evoked everything from a warm day on a tropical beach to a frightful  blizzard  (as  in  “the  weather  

outside is  ‘frightful’”).      Children  per-­ formed their songs on a stage bejeweled with theme-related props lovingly constructed by parents. And the elementary class performed a traditional Irish folksong, The Children’s  Winter to accompaniment by parents Jeana Foley, Dan Gillespie and Marcus Sims.

The program concluded with a delicious potluck lunch that warmed ourhearts and bellies—the perfect recipe for the long winter ahead. Thank you to our generous parents who helped  expand  the  library’s  pic-­ ture book collection with nearly 40 new best loved stories.

Blog Entry: DECEMBER 12, 2011 Whether you  prefer  to  say  “Happy  Holidays,”  “Season’s   Greetings,”  “Happy  Chanukah,”  "Merry  Christmas,”  “Happy   Kwanza,”  “Merry  Solstice  "  or   “Happy  New  Year,”  this  is  a   time that we are all inclined to spread joy to others. And this is the time (despite my efforts to the contrary) that I frequently find myself thinking about the ways that others can spread joy to me. There is a primordial kernel of selfishness deep within us that even the holidays cannot defeat. So what brings me delight during the holidays? Not candy canes, Christmas cookies, Hanukkah gelt, twinkling lights or figgie pudding. I love the music of the season.

The North Wind Doth Blow Recited by: Ms. Liotta  &  Ms.  Soraya’s    Class

The North wind doth blow Soon we’ll  have  snow Then what will poor Robin do? He’ll  hide  in  a  barn To keep himself warm Until cold winter is through.

As the sounds of primary students rehearsing their winter festival songs come wafting down the hall every morning this week, I have felt blessed to work at a school like Evergreen. As children prepare for Winter Festival, I realize that music and song are the finest ways possible to celebrate the season together—making a joyful noise. What are some of your favorite holiday songs? My top seven: Let it Snow God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen Do They Know It's Christmas?- Band Aid Happy Christmas - (War is Over) John Lennon White Christmas Stephen Colbert's "Another Christmas Song" Jingle Bell Rock

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Ms. Tobin  and  Ms.  Portillo’s  Class “What’s  The  Weather?”

Mr. Bingcang & Mrs. Dahmas’  Class “Let  It  Snow”

Ms. Liotta & Ms. Soraya’s  Class “The  Wind  Blew  East”

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Mrs. John  &  Conn’s  Class “Raindrops  Keep  Falling   On  My  Head”

Mrs. Basturescu & Ms. Lynn’s    Toddler  Class “What  Is  The  Weather?”

Mrs. Hatzyannis & Ms. Lourdes’   Elementary Class “The  Children’s   Winter”

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Going Green with Evergreen Fables are our best teachers. We know that the turtle knew more than the hare: making steady progress is the key to success. At Evergreen, being a green school means taking consistent and deliberate steps everyday toward reducing the environmental impact of our school and community. And just like the turtle racing to the finish line, setting a goal helps measure our progress and keep us moving in the right direction. THE GOAL: Green School Certification from the Maryland Association for Environmental & Outdoor Education (MAEOE). MAEOE is  a  nonprofit  educational  association  that  “seeks  to   encourage, education, support and inspire Maryland educators to build a citizenry that understands and is responsibly engaged in advancing sustainability to address human needs and  to  conserve  the  Earth’s  natural  resources.” WHO? Elementary teacher Mrs. Lourdes Barden is leading the application process. She is chairing a committee that currently includes Mrs. Liotta, Mr. DeMarchi, Mrs. Basturescu and Mr. Fedder.

Parents, alumni and friends of

Evergreen are encouraged to join the committee and support the initiative. WHAT? In order to be considered a Green School, Evergreen must complete a lengthy application process that includes a report about our classroom curriculum, professional development for teachers, description of community-wide celebrations of the natural environment, and a demonstration of selected conservation  best  management  practices  (BMP’s).     Evergreen  is  focused  on  BMP’s  in  the  area  of  (1)  Water  Con-­ servation/Pollution Prevention, (2) Energy Conservation, (3) Habitat Restoration, and (4) Responsible Transportation. Look  for  tips  on  going  green  each  week  in  the  ‘greenletter   (our eco-friendly digital newsletter. WHEN? Evergreen’s  application  is  due  on  April  1,  2012.    

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Primary News (Continued from page 9)

for our bamboo plant, and everyone is wondering how big it will grow! New Practical Life activities represent holidays in December. For example, there is a menorah for silver polishing, there are dreidels and tiny bells for transferring skills. We will also be reading several holiday books representing all of the December holidays. Please encourage your child to bring in their favorite holiday story for me to read aloud.

By Mrs. John and Mrs. Conn October 17, 2011 All of the children are busy with new lessons. Silver polishing and chair washing are great favorites with the three year olds. These activities help with the development of the hands, sequencing, and concentration. This age group is also involved with the various Practical Life exercises; spooning, dry pouring, folding, dressing frames (button and snaps), beading, and lacing. They also enjoy working with the pink tower and the brown stairs. The four and five year olds are busy with the moveable alphabet, sensorial materials, and math work. Academic Afternoon students are learning about time through the study of the analog clock and the calendar. All of the children have been learning about sea life. Some of the children are sorting seashells into univalve and bivalve categories, while others enjoy observing various seashells with a magnifying glass. They have learned that some animals protect themselves through camouflage and some, like the puffer fish, make themselves appear larger. New vocabulary words include; mollusk, predator, bivalve, univalve, camouflage, salt, and fresh water. We have been discussing the signs of fall. During fall outings, ask your child to identify some of the sounds and smells of fall.

By Mr. Bingcang and Mrs. Dahmas October 11, 2011 Brrrrr! What a cold start for fall! I hope that we still have more warm days ahead before winter. We would like to welcome Devon to our class! We also welcome his parents, Marlene and Keenan to our Evergreen community. Our class would like to thank Sam and Avery for our healthy and delicious snacks. The rain caused our Fall Festival at the Sligo Creek Park to be postponed. We were so excited to attend and join in exciting activities. The children are adjusting very well in class. Our older children are doing work like: short vowel cards, moveable alphabets, addition with beads, addition strip board, hundred board and 45 layout. Our younger children are working in the Practical Life area and Sensorial areas. They are also doing cards and counters, spindle box, and colored bead stair in the Mathematics area. Our bulletin board in class encourages the children to choose challenging work and finish it. They bring all work home on Friday. We are having a field trip to the Audubon Nature Sanctuary on October 11, 2011. The children  are  going  to  learn  about  the  birds  and    the  environment.  If  it’s  going   to be a dry day, we can have a nature hike and maybe see some wildlife. Please do not forget our Evergreen shirts and car seats. Parent volunteers for chaperones are welcome to come and join.

Page 18

3-2-1: Camp Gets Ready to Blast Off! Evergreen Camp is expanding its offerings in 2012 with two new programs for children 7-10. Camp Director Caroline Maffry says, “brainy    programs  at  Ever-­ green make the most of summer vacation. It is an extension of the Evergreen  way”     In addition to our renowned programs for Acorns and Pinecones (ages 3-1/2 to 5) and Tall Trees (ages 5-1/2 to 7), next summer we will be the perfect place for creative children with an interest in science and/or cooking. First, we are thrilled to be hosting Mad Science— weekly camps with themes like space, rocketry, physics and chemistry. Mad Science is renowned in the DC area for offering high energy camps for fans of hands-on, cross discipline science programs. For example: campers will tackle

Register for any Evergreen Camp program during the month of January

10% off camp.aspx

real world scenarios in the Crime Scene Chemistry program by using forensic tools to catch a thief. It takes more than fingerprints and dust these days! Do you know a young chef? We will offer week-long programs in cooking hosted by Gourmet Chefs. Each week will be as fun as it is delicious. Gourmet Chef’s programs   have been featured in  school’s  around   DC. Master chefs guide children through each step of the cooking process as they introduce concepts like nutrition and healthy eating. In addition, we are offering our exciting and educational summer Montessori program. Children can continue to grow and learn in a Montessori classroom led by one of our veteran master teachers.

Mad Science Secret Agent Lab Crime Scene Chemistry Earth Space and Beyond 3-2-1 Blast Off Red Hot Robots

Tiny Chefs Chef Challenge You Are What You Eat Mexican Fiesta Try a Taste Breakfast All Day Long Pasta! Pasta! Pasta!

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It’s okay to be shady at this year’s Evergreen Auction. It’s a night to look cool & sup-­ port the children of Evergreen. Saturday, April 21, 2012, 6-10 pm @ Brookside Gardens Contact us to reserve a ticket or request a donation form (donations are tax deductible).

Prize-winning Rain Garden (Continued from page 1)

MCDOT supports beauty without toxicity by encouraging landscaping projects that utilize conservation measures which keep pesticides and fertilizers out of local streams and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay.

Mrs. Lourdes Barden inspired and led the creation of the Rain Garden. On October 14, she organized a fall garden clean up with over 20 volunteer parents.

a filtration swale and catch basin. Over the course of a year, thousands of gallons of dirty water are kept out of creek and river systems.

The project was completed through the collaborative effort of Evergreen parents, staff, students and volunteers, led by Lourdes Evergreen’s landscaping   Barden.  Mrs.  Barden’s  stu-­ project involved transform- dents assisted the project ing its playground into a by conducting a water flow sustainable rain garden us- survey of the school ing only native plant spegrounds surrounding the cies. The new landscape play area. The landscape design prevents polluted design was created by Beth run-off rain water from Knox from Greener than flowing into the storm water Green Gardens, which spesystem and eventually into cializes in ecological garthe Chesapeake Bay by dening practices. Bryne channeling it from the Kelly, president of The school’s  parking  lot  through   Greensfield Company, a

business dedicated to sustainable landscape architecture completed the excavation and earth-moving. “It is  an  honor  to  be  recog-­ nized for doing the right thing,”  said  John  DeMarchi.   “Our  garden  project  was  a   true community-wide effort, and now we are doing our part to keep tributaries and rivers  a  little  cleaner.” Evergreen is recognized as a green school by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, in part because of initiatives like using Clean Currents wind power, promoting no-waste lunches and having an active recycling program.

Page 20


For’Ever Fund  Celebration,  TBA

Spring Festival, May 20

Annual Auction, April 21

Open House, February 17

10700 Georgia Avenue Silver Spring, MD 20902

Upcoming Events: Camp Enrollment Opens, January 1 Open House, January 13 Valentine’s Parents’  Night  Out February 10

Green Ink Winter 2011-2012  

Evergreen School Bulletin

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