Thursday, April 17th, 2014
News for Parents
General Information--April 18, 2014
Quarter 3 report cards have been posted: Student grades and teacher comments have now been posted and may be viewed in NetClassroom.
Nominations for TPSPA offices sought: The Nominating Committee of The Pennington School Parents Association is seeking candidates interested in and capable of serving as Executive Board members. Candidates desiring to serve the Association by representing a particular part of the community (e.g., boarding, Upper School, Middle School) must have a child who is enrolled in that category during the entire time to be served. All terms are two years, and candidates for consideration must be in good financial standing with the School.
The positions available for consideration are Treasurer and Recording Secretary. If you would like more information regarding any of the available positions or would like to be considered for one of them, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday, April 21.
Help TPS “Taste the World”: On Thursday, April 24, the School community will “Taste the World” in the Campus Center, starting at 2:15 p.m. If you have a food that represents your heritage, please bring it to school that day to share with the community. Appetizers, entrees, desserts, and more are all welcome! Dress in traditional clothing, or showcase a craft or musical talent that represents your culture during the food festival. Questions? Email Director of Global Studies and International Student Services Laura Desai at email@example.com.
Friday, May 2, is Grandparents Day!: A postcard invitation was mailed to all grandparents last week. Please check with your child’s grandparents to confirm that they have in fact received an invitation. If they have not and would like to attend, please contact Tina Lambdin by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 609–737–6121 with their up-to-date contact information. To review the schedule for the day or register online, please click here. Thank you!
Please support the Pennington Fund!: Unrestricted support provided by you through gifts to the Pennington Fund reaches every corner of the School, every day. This positive budgetary impact ensures that all those ordinary and extraordinary things that make this such a wonderful school will continue to be there, day after day, for all students.
To date, the Pennington Fund total is just over $592,000, or 66 percent of our goal of $900,000. Overall parent participation is 36 percent, and the breakdown of participation by class is:
Class of 2014 33%
Class of 2015 33%
Class of 2016 35%
Class of 2017 46%
Class of 2018 50%
Class of 2019 32%
Class of 2020 52%
You can increase your class participation number and the overall parent participation rate by making a gift of any amount to the Pennington Fund today! Gifts of all sizes are appreciated, make a difference, and help us keep this great school great.
Please make a gift online or call Rob McClellan at 609–737–6126. Thank you.
Upper School--April 18, 2014
Remember the College Admissions Panel on Monday!: There will be a panel discussion about the college admission process on Monday, April 21, at 6:30 p.m. in the Stainton Hall Lecture Center. The presentation is designed for students in grades 9–11 and their parents. The panelists are Cornell LeSane, associate director of admission, Carnegie Mellon University; Alexandra Largess, senior admissions officer, Columbia University; Gregory Moyer, associate director of admissions, Dickinson College; Jennifer Peterman, manager, North American recruitment, McGill University; Deborah Harrison-Epting, associate vice president for enrollment management, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. RSVP to email@example.com or 609–737–6130.
Prom tickets available on Tuesday: The Pennington School Junior/Senior Prom will be held on Saturday, May 31, at Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ. Buses will depart the Campus Center at 6:30 p.m. and will return by 11:30 p.m. Tickets are $95 per person and will go on sale on Tuesday, April 22.
Student Advisor applications due Friday, May 2: The Office of Admission is introducing an exciting new Student Advisor Program to The Pennington School. The program, designed as a leadership position for tenth-graders, will help new students with their transition to our community throughout the summer and into the first quarter of the school year. Current freshmen may apply; the students selected to be advisors for the 2014–15 school year will display a commitment to being active members of the School community. Applications are available in the Office of Admission. Please contact Ms. Grace Megaffin at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
Commencement invitations available: Seniors may pick up graduation invitations fromDirector of Alumni Affairs Matt Curry '97 or from Mrs.Tina Lambdin in the Alumni and Development trailer. Each senior may sign for up to ten invitations and matching envelopes; extras may be available later. Note: It is not necessary to have an invitation to attend Commencement; all are welcome!
Middle School--April 18, 2014
Global Perspective class tackles development: This past week, students in Mr. Jameson Moore’s Global Perspective class were given the task of using the four goals of modernization to help another country develop. The directions stated that the students, divided into groups and acting as the Development Policy and Analysis Division of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA), were to advise their group’s assigned country to help it become a ‘better’ nation according to the goals of modernization. The students were supposed to provide guidance to the government on how to alter the course of their nation, instill growth in the economy, create a better job market, produce a better education system, and generate services for the benefit of the country’s people.
The group's job was to write a proposal, a step-by-step guide for the leaders of their assigned country to follow in becoming a better nation. In their groups, they were asked to use the BIG6 research and writing process to research the current status of their countries. After the research was complete, the groups came up with a to-do list and budget of how much it would cost to aid these countries. The product of this project was a vibrant array of innovation and creativity. Some groups focused on improving education and providing fresh/clean water, while others focused on establishing political stability. The resulting conversation on the preservation of culture over prosperity was eye-opening and exciting.
ERB tests begin next Thursday: Mr. Paige and the Middle School faculty will be administering the CTP IV test produced by ERB (the Educational Records Bureau) beginning Thursday, April 24. Students will take two subtests each day, over a four-day period. The testing schedule is as follows: Thursday, April 24, 8:46–9:57 a.m.: Verbal Reasoning and Vocabulary; Friday, April 25, 8:00–9:25 a.m.: Reasoning Comprehension and Writing Mechanics; Monday, April 28, 8:46–10:42 a.m.: Writing Skills and Concepts, and Quantitative Reasoning; Tuesday, April 29, 9:28–10:59 a.m.: Mathematics 1 and Mathematics 2.
Click here to read more detailed information from Mr. Paige, including a note about forthcoming information for parents of students entitled to special testing accommodations.
MST Fair applications due next Friday: All Pennington Middle School students are encouraged to submit a project for the School’s MST (Math Science Technology) Fair. Guidelines about choosing and submitting a project, as well as an application, may be downloaded here. The fair will take place on Friday, May 16; the deadline for application is April 25.
Playwright/alumnus Mastrosimone visits drama classes
Playwright and screenwriter William Mastrosimone '66 visited Pennington on April 17 to speak with students in the Drama II class and Senior Seminar in Drama. The Drama II class has been directing scenes from his 2002 play, Bang Bang You're Dead, which depicts the ghostly memories of a school shooter.The students showed Mr. Mastrosimone one finished scene, and then discussed with him his inspiration for writing and revising the play. The seniors in the seminar class were able to discuss the role of a playwright in rehearsal and performance, among other topics. Mr. Mastrosimone has a Broadway play project in the works that Ms. Houston and students are hoping to attend next fall.
Bang Bang You're Dead, for which he received two Daytime Emmy awards, has been available on the Internet so that schools can download and perform it for free. Among Mr. Mastrosimone's other plays are The Woolgather, Shivaree, The Afghan Women, Tamer of Horses, and Cat's Paw. He wrote the drama Extremities as well as the screenplay for its film adaptation, and the movie The Beast is based upon his play Nanawatai. He has written for television, as well: He was writer and producer for the television movie Benedict Arnold: A Question of Honor and was co-executive producer of the mini-series Into the West, for which he also wrote three of the six episodes.
After his graduation from The Pennington School, Mr. Mastrosimone went on to receive a graduate degree in playwriting from Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University.
Randolph '14 signs with Philadelphia University
Pennington School senior Kaison Randolph of Trenton signed a National Letter of Intent on April 17 to play basketball for Philadelphia University. A two-year captain of the School’s varsity boys’ basketball team, Randolph has twice been named to area newspapers’ first team All Prep and first team All Area. He was selected by The Trentonian as Prep Player of the Year this year. Randolph has scored over 1,500 points during his Pennington career and was named Most Valuable Player in the John Molinelli Holiday Classic. In addition to playing at Pennington, Randolph has competed on Trenton/Mercer AAU Division I teams, most recently with Move Your Feet.
Odyssey of the Mind teams shine at state competition
The two Odyssey of the Mind teams from Pennington’s Middle School achieved first- and third-place finishes at the state competition held in Ewing, NJ, on April 12. The first-place Team 1 will advance to the world competition to be held at Iowa State University in May. Both teams began preparations for the competition in November of last year.
The chosen problem for Team 1 required the students to build a ride-on vehicle that would undergo a driver’s test. They were also recognized with an award for creativity at the regional competition in March. A video of their top-ranking performance at the state contest may be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xe72mBvv48
Team 2’s contest required students to build a “not-so-haunted house” with four special effects. The video of the team’s performance, which placed third in the state, may be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mE69Yd5TOXQ
Team 1 comprises Sophia Amaro, Abigail Bulger, Benjamin Dorph, Jacob Essig, Cole Felsher, Nicholas Micheletti, and Harry Wasnak. Team 2 consists of Vincent Colalillo, Sara Essig, Ayanna Johnson, Finn McConaughy, Casey Ort, Griffin Papa, Jake Papa, and Mitchell Walker. The Odyssey of the Mind coaches are Dr. Stephanie Heyeck and Ms. Susan Wirsig.