Dear Sprague Community,

It was great to see so many of you at our annual Open House! I hope you and your children enjoyed the most recent teacher video, “Eye of the Tiger,” which lets kids know all the things teachers need to do to get ready to teach. A link will be sent to the video in the next Sprague Pulse. Special thanks go to all the teachers who participated and an extra special shout out to our teacher Assembly Committee: Kenn Craig (director and producer), Katie Bender (creative director), Sara Bartelloni (creative director), Kristan Fiore (executive producer), and Sara Jauniskis (special effects). So fun to have a sequel to “All Night Long” where teachers showed what they do when children go home.

Poetry Residency

This week, we are fortunate to have Potato Hill Poetry here for a residency in our 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classrooms. This program will culminate with a “Poetry Jam” for all grades on Friday afternoon. Special thanks to Annie Newman from the PTO Creative Arts committee for coordinating both residencies this spring!


This year, MCAS testing will take place for students in grades 3, 4, and 5 between April 7 and May 26, 2017. Students in grades 3 and 4 will take the English Language Arts and Math tests, while students in grade 5 take ELA, Math, and Science MCAS tests. The schedule has been shared and can also be found at the end of this note again. It is important that students arrive well rested and on time on testing days. If a student is sick, we will schedule a make up. 4th graders will take the MCAS test online for the first time this year. The computer based test is required for all 4th graders in the state. Make ups for computer based testing may be a bit more complicated so we are hoping for really good attendance on those days. Beginning next year, all 4th and 5th graders will take the test in online format. The state is phasing out paper-based testing by 2019. This new version of MCAS will be somewhat different and require written responses to text at all grades. Previously, essay responses were only required in grade 4. We feel our curriculum provides a strong foundation for the skills tested on MCAS, so students should feel comfortable that they are prepared. With any new test, there may be items or formats that seem less familiar, but our teachers will do their best to provide high quality instruction and tips about the test format.

Multi-cultural Night at Sprague

Please consider joining us for the second annual Multi-cultural Night at Sprague on Thursday, March 30 from 6:00-7:30 PM. Families who would like to share information about their cultural heritage and/or country of origin are invited to sign up and make a display. The PTO has purchased display boards. They are available in the office. We will have entertainment provided by the Brazilian drum group, “Grooversity,” a short sing-along with Spanish teacher Vixen Peare, a “Language Learning Share,” and time to visit the exhibits created by Sprague families. If you are planning to make a display board, we also ask that you consider having your child share two or three words or phrases in your heritage language during the “Language Learning Share” time. It will be a simple, yet fun addition to the program. Even if you aren’t planning to share your heritage with a display board, please feel free to attend the event to learn about the diverse cultures and backgrounds of our school community. At Sprague, we have many cultures, but are ONE school! Let’s celebrate our diversity and cultural heritage at Multi-cultural Night! We hope to see you there. Please contact event chair Elaine Marten to sign up or to answer any questions.

Artist in Residence—Contributions needed

Laura Petrovich-Cheney

Artist in Residence Sprague School

April 3rd – 7th

After Hurricane Sandy devastated the Northeast coastline of New Jersey and the surrounding area, Laura began collecting the remains left behind in its wake—floorboards, window frames, cabinets, furniture, exterior siding—anything that she could find that evoked life before the storm. Her art continues to be inspired

by traditional American patchwork quilt designs—designs that are familiar and comforting. She creates new relationships between color, proportion, texture, and surfaces and never interfere with the original colors. The faded colors and tattered surfaces of the wood are a nostalgic glimpse into the past. The visual history of the salvaged wood – the chipped layers of paint, the nail holes, the grain- tells a story. Using a grid system, mathematical proportions, and symmetry, she transforms this salvaged wood into something new, fresh, and familiar. The work is rooted in repetition and pattern to mimic life, growth, regeneration, and tells a new story: What

once was, is born anew. A collection of her quilts are currently on display through November 12, 2018 at the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton, Ma.

We are delighted to welcome Laura Petrovich Cheney to Sprague School in early April. Jennifer Stabnick and Laura Petrovich Cheney are long time friends and have been busy collaborating to design a wonderful experience for our young artists. Laura Petrovich Cheney will be working with our students all week long in their scheduled art classes to create our very own wood quilt. In order to create a meaningful work of art that connects with our community and the work of Cheney, we will be utilizing the pencils that seem to wash up on the shores of our halls. We will be collecting pencils from home and school through the end of March. The final piece will find a home in the halls of Sprague School.

Here is how you can help!

We are looking for wood pencils of all reasonable shapes and sizes. We expect a great deal of pencils that have been sharpened down to their last few inches. We also encourage you to look through your drawers and bags at home. A great deal of personality and charm will come from the pencils you may have picked up at a mini golf, bowling alley or any place of business….. Maybe you have a few “this pencil belongs to ______” pencils lying around or perhaps you have a few novelty pencils with flowers or soccer balls…. This will all add to the color and interest of the final piece. Please place your donations in the pencil boxes located in either the art room or office.

We are also looking for parent volunteers who may be handy with a saw and have the time to help saw the tips off our pencils. If you are able to lend a hand during the last week of March please contact Jennifer Stabnick through email: stabnickj

Many thanks in advance!

Dates to remember:

March 30: Sprague School Multi-cultural Night 6:00-7:30 PM

April 6: Incoming Kindergarten Parent Information Night 6:30 PM

April 12: Teacher Appreciation Luncheon

April 14-21: No school—Good Friday and school vacation week

May 5: Kindergarten screening during school hours

June 15: Field Day (raindate-June 16)

Please see updated MCAS schedule:


Grade 3 ELA: April 27, May 1, 2,

Grade 4 ELA: April 24, 25, 28

Grade 5 ELA: April 7, 10, 13

Make up for Gr. 4 CBT and Gr. 3, 5: TBD

Grade 3 Math: May 11, 12

Grade 4 Math: May 22, 23

Grade 5 Math: May 8, 9

Grade 5 Science: May 15, 16

Make ups for Math/Science: May 18, 19

Weekly note from Ms. Snyder–March 22, 2017
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