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April News

From the Principal’s Desk:

Celebrating Early Childhood for Week of the Young Child

Dear Parents,

One of my favorite quotes comes from the movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off: “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that sometimes I look back on my life and wonder where the time has gone. Am I really this old already? So often as adults, we look back easily on college or high school as the years that helped us learn and grow. But if you look back even further, you might see that it was your early childhood years that laid much of the foundation for the person you are today.

April is the month of Week of the Young Child, an annual celebration of growth and development for preschool-aged children everywhere. For our staff, Week of the Young Child is a time to plan how we as educators can better meet the needs of your children to ensure that they look back fondly on their early childhood years. Not to brag, but I do believe that the students at this school – your children – are absolutely phenomenal. I see so much potential in each and every one of them to reach incredible success in whatever field they chose, and I am thrilled knowing that Chesterbrook Academy gets to be an early chapter in the story of their lives. I can only hope they remember us when they someday change the world!

Click here to download a printable copy of this month’s Lunch & Events Calendars. Hard copies are also available at the front desk. Don’t forget that up-to-date information is also available via our school website at any time. Please check the whiteboard in the front lobby for a heads up when a spirit day is approaching.

Here’s a quick look at the many things to come in April:

EASTER EGG HUNT – Thursday, April 2nd – Everyone’s getting excited for the arrival of the Easter Bunny! Rumor has it he will be leaving some of his treat-filled eggs all around the school. The children will search for the eggs in the classroom and in the park, counting and identifying the colors as they go. Do you think we can find them all?

WEEK OF THE YOUNG CHILD – Week of April 13th – It’s a big week at Chesterbrook Academy, as we celebrate Week of the Young Child! The goal of this special week is to raise public awareness of early childhood needs, and spotlight the growth and development of young children everywhere. All of our students will help us to celebrate with a different child-centered theme each day. Stay tuned for a full schedule of events and additional information.

KINDERGARTEN SAT10 TESTING – April 20th & 21st – Our Kindergarten class will begin the Stanford Achievement standardized testing for the 2014-2015 school year. Please avoid absences or late arrivals unless there is an emergency. For more information on the SAT10 testing process, please see Miss Julie.

EARTH DAY FESTIVAL – Wednesday, April 22nd – We certainly love our planet, and now it’s time to show off just how much! The children will learn about the many ways that they can contribute to a healthy environment. Our Beginner through Kindergarten classes will come together in Washington Square Park to share their ideas before taking part in our annual ladybug release. Don’t forget to wear lots of green as a promise to always treat our Earth with love and respect!

CRAZY SOCK DAY – Thursday, April 30th – Everyone needs a day to be silly! Show off your craziest, wackiest, mismatched socks to your friends and teachers. We want to see bright colors, bold shapes, and cool patterns. Which class will have the silliest socks of all?
As always, please reach out with any questions, comments, suggestions, or concerns. Thank you for your ongoing support of Chesterbrook Academy of Philadelphia!

Kind Regards,

Chloe Glenn

From the Education Department

eduarticleAppreciating the Wonders of Mother Nature

Spring is here and Earth Day is right around the corner, providing a wonderful opportunity to connect children with nature and reinforce the importance of preserving and protecting the world around us.

Our Links to Learning curriculum uses hands-on activities to cultivate a deeper connection to the earth and foster academic, physical and social skill development.

Below are activities we implement in our classrooms to get children excited about nature, as well as activities and books to read with your child at home.


  • In the classroom: Our teachers provide natural objects, such as leaves, pinecones and flowers for the children to see and touch. We help children associate words with the concrete objects they represent.
  • At-home activity: Allow your child to experience different textured fruits, such as an orange, watermelon and cantaloupe. Talk about what he sees, smells, tastes and feels.
  • Recommended reading: Colors from Nature from PlayBac Publishing and The Earth Book by Todd Parr

BEGINNERS (Ages 2-3):

  • In the classroom: Around age two, children begin to understand interdependencies in nature. For instance, they learn that ladybugs feed on insects that are harmful to gardens, trees and shrubs. On Earth Day, many of our students have the opportunity to release ladybugs to help local gardens.
  • At-home activity: Take a walk outdoors with your child and play a game of “I Spy.” Ask him point out objects found in the springtime, for example a red flower, a blue bird or a colorful butterfly.
  • Recommended reading: Biscuit’s Earth Day Celebration by Alyssa Satin Capucilli & David T. Wenzel and The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle


  • In the classroom: As our Intermediates gain a greater understanding and appreciation for how living things grow, the class may adopt a pet such as a fish or bunny. Students develop math, science and language skills by measuring the pet’s food, observing the pet’s behavior and habitat, and learning new vocabulary. Research shows that when children have the opportunity to care for animals, they practice nurturing behaviors that help them interact in gentle ways with people also.
  • At-home activity: Create a small garden and allow your child to help you plant and water seeds, either outdoors or indoors. Ask him to predict what the plant will look like by drawing pictures in his journal. Check the plant regularly so he can observe and measure changes in growth. Discuss the importance of watering and caring for the plant.
  • Recommended reading: Our Earth by Anne Rockwell and the poem “Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out!” by Shel Silverstein

PRE-K/PRE-K 2 (Ages 4-5):

  • In the classroom: Teachers encourage our older preschoolers to reuse recyclable materials in fun and unconventional ways. For instance, our students use cardboard boxes to create a castle, milk jug lids to sort and match, and plastic bottles to create beautiful, unique artwork.
  • At-home activity: Set up a recycling station using cardboard boxes, and label each box with the words “metal”, “plastic” and “paper”. Throughout the month, ask your child to help sort your family’s recyclables by placing the items into the correct box. Explain that recycling is just one way that we can be kind to the earth. Ask him to name a few other ways, such as conserving electricity, picking up litter and planting a garden.
  • Recommended reading: A Tree is Nice by Janice May Udry and The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

We create a path for lifelong learning by providing numerous opportunities for children to study and explore nature. These hands-on experiences lead to growth in all areas of development as students transition into elementary school and beyond.

– Lauren Starnes, PhD- Director of Early Childhood Education

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