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Spruce Street Nursery School Newsletter

BUTTERFLY, BUTTERFLY, FLY, FLY AWAY: TRADITIONS AT SPRUCE STREET There was a child that went forth every day, And the first object he look’d upon, that object he became, And that object became part of him for the day or a certain part of the day Or for many years or stretching cycles of years. – Walt Whitman The above quote from Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass reflects our belief that every experience in a child’s early life is formative. I was so pleased to discover that many of those early experiences—both the ones the children remember, as well as those long since forgotten—have positively impacted the extraordinary group of Spruce Alumni who came to our 15th Anniversary gathering in May! Without fail the children and teens were anxious to see old friends and teachers, had happy memories to share and actually knew who I was. (They were coached a bit, I think, but it still made me feel good!) They were a little shy, yet confident, kind, personable and articulate. The older children looked dotingly upon our current Sprucers with laughter, appreciation and just a hint of envy. The alumni came back to celebrate the days before homework and exams, when boys wore dresses and girls fire hats and the Quadro was huge! It reminded me that the greeting a child receives upon arrival at school or the sensation of climbing on the Quadro, the

observation of the metamorphosis of the butterflies or the supportive messages from a teacher all make an imprint on a child’s developing self and help each child to learn and become the person he or she ultimately will be. Seeing these long since flown-away alumni, I felt so proud and grateful to have been a part of those early, impressionable years.

“He built a small house, called a cocoon, around himself. He stayed inside for more than two weeks. Then he nibbled a hole in the cocoon, pushed his way out and... he was a beautiful butterfly!”. – Eric Carle

(The Very Hungry Caterpillar)

At the party, parents and children wrote in a book that I will cherish forever. Some former students’ quotes from the book include: s What I remember about Spruce Street is FUN s Fly Away…so many special memories!! s The teachers are very nice s Back in the day when we had time to play “dress up” s This is the real deal… s I miss Spruce Street! Beyond the perpetual longing for simpler days runs a true thread of appreciation for their preschool years together, for times shared and the community that expands and diffuses with the passing of the years

but still remains central to so many Spruce Street families’ lives. To quote Maggie Magner, our amazing Music Specialist, who composed this new Spruce Street Song for this year’s Fly Away: Spruce Street is the place where we can learn and play, Exciting things are happening here every day, Friendships here are built to last, Time flies by here way too fast. Spruce Street is the place where we can have some fun, Music, art and journals playing in the sun, As we step out on our own, You will see how much we’ve grown. Spruce Street is the place that we can call our home. HOORAY! I know that I speak for many when I say that these lyrics truly resonate. Butterfly, butterfly, fly fly away…

Exuma Book Drive

Thank you everyone for your generous contributions to the Exuma book drive we held at SSNS in March and April. SSNS happily shipped five large boxes of new and used books to Roker Point (as in Al Roker, he grew up there) Preschool and Elementary School in Exuma, Bahamas in April. The students were thrilled to have these additions to their library and send much gratitude!

Heard on Spruce Street

The Oaks were fully immersed this spring in an extensive three week art unit, not only learning about great masters of art but also about their methods and works. We created mixed-up self-portraits like Picasso, “drew with scissors” like Matisse and practiced pointillism (with q-tips) just like Seurat! The highlight of the unit was painting on our backs, just like Michelangelo did with the Sistine Chapel... only we painted for five minutes, not four years! We asked the Oaks what would they paint on the ceiling of their room if they could. s s s s

s s s s s s

Beau - “a football field” Cole - “a chimney” Cecilia - “unicorns and a Pegasus” Kaydie - “flowers”

LJ - “a black sky, for a space room” Mira - “butterflies” Olivia - “a big sun” Paige - “little tiny kittens” Sebi - “a whale” Tessa - “lots of little dogs”

Annual Fund Update - the Final Days!

SAVE THE DATE Monday, July 11th First Day of Summer Program Friday, August 19th Last Day of Summer Program Wednesday, September 7th Open House for New and Returning Families Thursday, September 8th First Day of School

Summer at Spruce Join the Fun!!

Summer Camp at Spruce is just around the corner! While camp is great for Spruce students of all ages, it is a particularly good way for new families to ease into life at the school. Here’s what mom Alexandra Abbott had to say about her family’s first experience at Spruce: “Camp was a perfect introduction for our incoming Acorn. Eleanor became familiar with the school, got to know her teachers and met some of her fellow classmates and peers. It was a fun summer experience and really helped with her transition in September. We can’t wait for more Spruce camp fun this summer!”


With just a few days left until the end of Spruce’s Annual Fund, we are hoping to achieve an ambitious goal of 100% participation among current families, having just over 94% participation thus far. With this goal in mind, we hope you will consider a donation of $15 to honor Spruce Street’s 15th anniversary. Your $15 will not only help mark this momentous occasion but will enable us to reach our participation goal for the year. Gifts received by June 30th will count toward this year’s drive. Donors names (not their giving levels) will be recognized in the Annual Report. The dollar tally of $154k is at an all-time high, thanks not only to current parents, but to the generous support of many alumni families and grandparents. Thank you to all of the wonderful Spruce supporters who make it possible for Christie to maintain our high educational standards and nurturing environment for future Spruce children!

Under the Sea Spruce Street Auction 2011

Once again, the Spruce Street Auction was an event to remember! Guests were transported to an undersea oasis where they enjoyed the company of past, present and future Spruce Street families and bid on spectacular packages generously donated by the community. The event was coordinated by the tremendous team of Elizabeth Brennan, Brooke Laughlin, Dana Lewis, Kelly Panayotou, Paige Sutphin and Courtney Winter. Many thanks to these extraordinary ladies and to all who contributed their time, talent and donations to make the evening such a success!

Spruce Friends from the Past 15 Years!

Spruce Friends from the Past 15 Years!









ALUMNI FAMILY TREE The Schumachers left Boston for a European adventure last summer. We used Belgium as our home base, and the girls went to an International school in Antwerp. They made a lot of friends and even learned a bit of Dutch. We traveled to Paris, London, Geneva, Munich, Budapest and spent Thanksgiving in Florence and Venice with great friends. Lola ’10 is forever a Parisian, and Bella ’08 loved London with all the history and tradition. In January, we moved to Indianapolis, Indiana where Amy’s corporate HQ are located. Jim and Amy grew up there, so family is close by. Bella (8) starts 3rd grade this fall and Lola (5) will be in Kindergarten. We’ll be on the Vineyard this summer and hope to see some of you! Spruce will always have a special place in our hearts! New address: 8115 Spring Mill Rd, Indpls, IN 46260. Amy, Jim, Bella & Lola

Gabby Guagliano, former Oak and Willow teacher, went back into the corporate world and is currently selling residential real estate. She recently married David Baron in Charleston, SC at Middleton Place Plantation, and they live together in Jamaica Plain where Gabby finally has her own garden! She always enjoys seeing Spruce students and families around the city, Liam Duggan ’03 is in his last year (6th Grade) at Chestnut Hill School, loves all sports– especially basketball and baseball–and will be attending St. Sebastian’s in Needham in the fall. Delia ’07 is finishing up 2nd Grade at Chestnut Hill School and loves soccer and lacrosse. Both Liam and Delia will be going to sleep away camp this summer in Maine - Camp Kieve for Liam’s fifth year and its sister camp, Wavus, for Delia’s first year.

Will Laughlin ’09 and Chandler Gilbane ’09 just finished Kindergarten at The Park School. Here they are after the annual May Day performance. Sam Alberti ‘01 just graduated 8th Grade at the Western Academy of Beijing (WAB) in Beijing, China. This is Sam’s fourth year in Beijing where he attends an international school with students from 57 countries! He especially enjoys volleyball, basketball, soccer, tennis and golf. He’s in the drama club and has performed several times this year. While he misses Boston, his friends and Red Sox games — he has enjoyed the chance to travel to places like North Korea! If anyone is passing through Beijing, please email us, susan.alberti@ We still have Sam’s butterfly wings from Fly Away!

Welcome Spruce Saplings (2010 - 2011)

Garrett Zug - 6/25/10 Sarah ’02 and Emilie ’02 Gurnon finished the 20 mile “Walk for Hunger” in May. This was their eighth year participating! Sarah and Emilie are wrapping up a strong 8th grade year at Boston Trinity Academy where they ran Cross Country and did running club. This summer, they’ll travel with their family and take the long awaited annual trip to Wisconsin. Elizabeth Lowrey and her girls have moved to 90 Pembroke Street in Boston with new stepfather, D a v i d Manfredi. Austin Cl a p p ’00 just finished her first year of boarding school at Rumsey Hall. Lida ’02 & Ellie ’03 Clapp both graduated to middle school at Buckingham Browne and Nichols. The girls are off to Pony Farm for riding camp and will spend the summer in San Miguel, Mexico with their grandparents!

Zain Shaukat - 7/9/10 Luke Rowe - 8/26/10 Girls Book Club, from left: Delaney Callaghan ‘06, Margeaux Dowdle ‘05, Kate Wilson ‘05, Leyla Ewald ‘06. (Missing that day: Cecilia Velander ‘06.) The Laird Family is living life out in the suburbs of Dover. The bus picks up Barrett ’04 (age 11) and Pete ’06 (age 9) and takes them to Chickering Elementary School. Barrett loves school and plays lacrosse, soccer and the trumpet. When Pete is not running around the woods, he loves hockey, wrestling, fishing and kayaking. We are lucky to run into some of our old Spruce friends and reminisce about the magic of Spruce. We often look through our old class albums and think of you all.

Max Bridgen - 9/15/10 Lucy Bowers - 10/16/10 Jack Gerstner - 11/19/10 Olive Baird - 1/6/11 Josie Carson - 3/10/11 John Dickie - 3/13/11 Chase Eisenberg - 3/20/11 Nate Brennan - 4/21/11 Owen Jamal - 5/5/11 Nathan Havemeyer - 6/5/11

Send your Alumni Updates to PAGE 3

FLY AWAY 2011 Butterfly Goodbyes 2010-2011 Teachers asked departing students what they love most about Spruce Street Charlie: “The Legos.”

Beau: “No math homework!”

Tessa: “Journals.”

Tuck: “Projects.”

Cole: “I love art projects.”

Ryan: “Drop off.”

Hadley: “The house.”

Cecilia: “I like science projects best.”

Annabel: “The cubbies and the journals.”

Trey: “Madison.” (the mascot)

Kaydie: “Painting.”

Jack: “Playing with Ryan and Chase.”

Corina: “Everything!”

LJ: “Because you get to read books.”

Adnan: “Getting a haircut.”

Max: “Free play.”

Mira: “The teachers.”

Celia: “Playing.”

Robbie: “Morning meeting.”

Olivia: “I love music.”

Nellie: “Sorting the beans.”

Anya: “The art projects we made.”

Paige: “Playing with the magna-tiles.”

Kate: “Seeing the caterpillar.”

Gavin: “Playing with beads.”

Sebi: “I like Spruce Street painting projects.”

Spruce Street Nursery School 5 Avery Place Boston, MA 02111 617-482-5252

Roots Spring 2011  
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