Originally delivered on 1/6/2023 1:01 pm

SUBJECT: Riverside School Peek at the Week 1/6/23

Riverside School PTA Newsletter
PTA Logo
Friday, January 6, 2023
PTA Highlights

Dear Riverside Parents,

Happy New Year!  We hope everyone had a wonderful and relaxing holiday break with family and friends.  

We are looking forward to a great 2023, and we are delighted to kick it off with the return of the Winter Musical!  Rehearsals are in full swing, the cast and crew are hard at work, and the entire school will be treated to a performance of Matilda Jr. during the school day next Friday.  Bringing a production of this scope to the Riverside stage is truly a labor of love, and we are so grateful to our Winter Musical Chairs, Committee and Volunteers for their dedication, creativity, and countless hours of work.  

As a reminder, Winter Afters registration closes today at 5pm, and there are still spots available in some classes. Next week, the Green Committee is running another holiday lights drive.  Please consider dropping any broken or decommissioned holiday lights in the collection bins in front of the school.

It's hard to believe, but there are only five weeks before we break for the winter recess. Calendar reminders for the next few weeks include:

January 9-13 – Holiday Lights Drive
January 13, 14 – Winter Musical performances
January 16 – Schools Closed (MLK, Jr. Day)
January 17 – Winter Afters - Gym Mini-Session #1 begins 
January 20 – CSC meeting (for students who have RSVP'd)
January 23 – Winter Afters - All other Full Session classes begin
January 30 - February 3 – Math Marathon
February 2 – Family Math Night with Greg Tang (virtual)

Have a great weekend!

Allison Maus & Clare Johnson
PTA Co-Presidents

PTA News

There are still spots available in some classes, and this is the last call! Gym Mini-Session #1 Afters will start on Tuesday, January 17th (ending on February 10th), and Gym Mini-Session #2 Afters will start on February 27th (ending on March 24th). All other Winter Afters will start on Monday, January 23rd and run through March 24th. If you haven't already done so, you can set up an account and profile for one or more children on Eleyo, Flex's registration platform. Please refer to the Riverside PTA Afters Page for class descriptions and other important information. We are looking forward to a fun variety of classes to keep students busy this Winter!


Do you need to throw away broken holiday lights that no longer work? Please consider donating broken light strands to the Green Committee next week. Only lights with entire sections of broken bulbs will be accepted, not just the occasional broken bulb. Please make sure they are untangled. Collection bins will be located outside the front doors from January 9-13. Let's work together to keep dangerous materials out of our landfills. Thank you!


The PTA is excited to announce Riverside School’s 2023 Math Marathon!

This year’s Marathon will run Monday, January 30th through Sunday, February 5th and include: 

  • A week-long celebration of math featuring at-home pencil and paper game boards with fun math activities and chances to win prizes; and

  • A virtual Family Math Night hosted by master game developer Greg Tang on Thursday, February 2nd at 6pm

Stay tuned for at-home game boards on the PTA website later this month, and register here for the February 2 Virtual Family Math Night with Greg Tang!


Jerry Pallotta Author Visit

On December 21st, our 1st grade students were visited by author Jerry Pallotta, best known for the Who Would Win? series. A nature and animal enthusiast and a comedian at heart, Jerry captivated the students with tales about growing up at the beach, becoming a father and a grandfather, and all the ways he is inspired to write. The students learned about the importance of first, second and third drafts, the book publishing process, and the many decisions that go into making a book beyond the words themselves (title, font, color, illustrations).  It was a great morning for all the budding readers and writers in Grade 1!

Riverside Rhythms

Also before the holiday break, students enjoyed a lunchtime concert with violinist and local mom Renee Oliver as part of the PTA's Riverside Rhythms program. Students sang along to holiday favorites including Jingle Bell Rock, Feliz Navidad, and Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel, and Renee answered questions varying from "How long have you played the violin for?" to "How does the violin make its sound?" It was a festive way to expose students to the beauty and fun of instrumental music.     

Upcoming Enrichment Programs

  • January 25: Dirtmeister’s Electricity Show (Grade 4)
  • January 26: High Touch High Tech’s Weather Wise (Kindergarten)
  • February 8: High Touch High Tech’s Zoom to the Moon (Grade 1)
  • February 7, 8: CT Historical Society’s On the Move (Grade 4)

These programs are paid for by your generous donations to the PTA. Thank you!


Let your children run off their energy before school! The Early Morning Program now heads to the Gym at 8am on Tuesdays and Thursdays, giving students a bit more exercise as the weather outside gets colder. If dropping off after 8am, please bring them to the front door. The drop-in rate is $18 per day, and you may register your child and get more information here. Please contact Melissa Goldstein or Anne Akyuz with any questions.


Safety Duty is an important part of keeping our children safe at Riverside School. Volunteers make the morning drop-off process more efficient and secure. Volunteers assist children as they exit their vehicles in the front driveway from 8:30am - 8:45am daily and help to enforce the “Rules of the Road.”  Sign up online.

For more information, contact Sean Sullivan.

5th Grade News

Please upload the following pictures here by (the new extended deadline) JANUARY 31st:

  • Photos of at-school events from Kindergarten through 5th Grade - think First Day of School, Boo Bash, Field Day, etc. Please upload these to the relevant folders to save our committee time reorganizing.
  • A baby photo of your child for the "Guess Who?" section. To see examples, click here. (Note: Most of you have done this already.)


  • I'm having trouble uploading photos to the Google Drive. What should I do? Click here and scroll down for instructions.
  • When do you need the pictures mentioned above? We extended the deadline but need all photos no later than January 31st.
  • When should I work on my child's individual page? Stay tuned for details in February. Every student will design his/her own page, uploading his/her own photos (which can include activities outside school) and designing the page using a software program to which we will give you access. Currently, please only upload the pictures mentioned above to our Google Drive. 
  • Do you have enough volunteers working on Yearbook? NO. We can't make this happen without more help. If you have some time from late January through March to work on a small section of the yearbook (i.e., pictures from 1st grade), please email Luisa Lander
District News
"Making Friends with Fractions"

Please join Mike Reid, GPS Coordinator for K-12 Math, for "Making Friends with Fractions" on Tuesday, January 10 at 10:15 am.  You will learn “why” we teach fractions the way we do and will walk away with a better understanding of critical concepts like fraction equivalence and visual modeling. Come prepared with paper and a pencil to work through some concepts. Q&A will follow the presentation. All GPS parents are welcome.

Zoom Link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/82208485477

Support the District's Soil Remediation Project at WMS

The Board of Education is moving forward on the Soil Remediation Project for Western Middle School. Due to contamination, WMS students have not been allowed on any of the school’s fields for the past six years. After ongoing discussions with state and federal agencies, a remediation action plan (RAP) now exists, and the state is seeking community input. 

The district is asking the entire Greenwich Public Schools community to support access to safe playing fields at WMS since the WMS field after remediation will significantly improve multi-sport field access for the entire town of Greenwich – from youth through high school sports. With that in mind, GPS families are encouraged to email the CT Department of Energy & Environmental Protection (DEEP) Remediation Project Manager, Jeffrey Wilcox, at jeff.wilcox@ct.gov with comments and reasons why this project is important to our community. You can also attend the public hearing at WMS, either in person or virtually, on Wednesday, January 11 at 6:00pm. For additional information, see the latest project fact sheet.

PTAC Academic Excellence Committee Workshop

"Fostering a Love of Learning at Home" Series 

We have another opportunity for elementary school parents to learn more about hands-on strategies they can use to support their children at home, both with review and enrichment. OGS Principal, Jennifer Bencivengo, has put together a four-part series, "Fostering a Love of Learning at Home." All GPS elementary school parents are invited to join the conversation. All sessions will be offered both in-person at OGS' media center and virtually through Google Meets. If you are interested in attending any or all of this discussion series, you must register by using this link. The second session in the series - "Fostering a Love of Math, Critical Thinking & Problem Solving" - is scheduled for Tuesday, January 25 at 9:15am.

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Community News
Christmas Tree Recycling!

You may drop off your Christmas tree until January 31st at Byram Park, Bruce Park, Greenwich Point or Holly Hill to be chipped into mulch for town properties. Additional tree recycling details can be found through the Department of Parks and Recreation.  Before dropping, be sure to remove lights, stands and decorations! You can also leave them on your property to decompose, providing wildlife habitat and enriching soil.

The Yellow Tulip Project

On January 8, The Yellow Tulip Project will offer its powerful and transformative Storytelling Alchemy 4-week, online course, where participants will learn how to share their personal story as well as the fundamentals of storytelling, including narrative arc and how to approach difficult topics in non-triggering ways. Just like an alchemist who changes metal to gold, you will learn how to tell your own story in a way that will help you in your own personal journey as well as impact hundreds of others. Once you graduate the course, you will be invited to join our Speaker’s Bureau and have the opportunity to share your story at YTP events, conferences, and schools across the country!  Plus, we offer a stipend for your work because we at YTP believe that youth stories matter and will make a difference in creating meaningful change.

The course is FREE and supported by a generous grant from The Greenwich Alliance for Education.  The Alliance will provide registration fees & stipends for speaking engagements for all youth, Grades 7-12, throughout the 2023 school year.

Please contact Clare Carroll at clare.carroll69@gmail.comto register and for additional information. Or scan the QR code and use YTP2022 to register.

Flower Petals Adaptive Dance Company

Flower Petals Adaptive Dance Company is a local non-profit organization that offers dance lessons for children with special needs. The current session will start on January 8th, and more information can be found here.

Get Help with Summer Planning at SummerFare 2023!

Looking for fun and engaging summer activities for your children? Or perhaps your teen is looking for an internship or summer job?

Check out the Greenwich High School PTA SummerFare on Wednesday, February 1, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the GHS Student Center (snow date is February 2). SummerFare 2023 is an annual event that focuses on summer activities, camps and employment for kids. Exhibitors will present materials and talk with public and private Elementary, Middle and High School students and their parents about summer programs, internships and camps. Additionally, there are STEM and college programs at this event. In 2022, over 85 exhibitors and a record-breaking 625 attendees joined us. We are expecting another great turnout for this much-anticipated event. Admission is free!

"Climate Justice in Connecticut"

The YWCA Greenwich will host the "Coretta Scott and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Annual Conversation" on Climate Justice in Connecticut on February 1st at 7:00 PM.

High School Musical performed by the EMS Drama Club

The Eastern Middle School 2022-2023 Drama Club will perform the Disney musical “High School Musical” in the school’s Lee Book Auditorium on February 2nd (at 4:30pm), 3rd (at 7:30pm), and 4th (at 4:30pm). Thursday’s tickets are $10, and Friday and Saturday’s tickets are $20. Assigned-seat tickets can be purchased online at easternmiddleschool.ludus.com. Doors open 45 minutes before the show, and a concession stand with home-baked goods will be available. This is a great show for the whole family.


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Have something to add? Email us at: peekweekriv@gmail.com/ Deadline for submissions is 3pm on Wednesday of the school week

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