Thursday, April 23rd, 2015
News for Parents
General Information--April 24, 2015
Spring Concert on Sunday: The Spring Concert is Sunday, April 26, at 7:00 p.m. in Sparks Gymnasium. Come hear the Middle School Singers and Instrumental Ensemble along with the Upper School Orchestra, Jazz Band, Chorus, and Pennington Singers. It’s a fun evening with a lot of great music!
In place of an admission fee, we ask that you bring food items to support the Community Service Club fundraiser for the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen. They are making bagged lunches, and will appreciate the following donations:
- Freshmen—peanut butter and jelly in plastic containers
- Sophomores—juice boxes
- Juniors—serving size snacks (pretzels, cookies, chips, bars)
- Seniors—money to buy bread
Remember Grandparents Day, May 1: If you need information about this event for your child’s grandparents, you can review the schedule for the day or register online by clicking here. Questions? Please contact Wendy Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org or 609–737–6121.
Parent education offered on marijuana issues: Director of Counseling Stephanie DeSouza invites parents to attend a community presentation on a current hot issue, the legalization of marijuana, on Tuesday, May 5, from 3:00 to 5:30 p.m. at Rider University’s Bart Luedecke Center. Admission is free. Expert Kevin Sabet, Ph.D., will present “Weeding Out the Truth: A Conversation about Marijuana.” Click here for details and for information on Dr. Sabet.
Mrs. DeSouza will host a follow-up roundtable discussion on Tuesday, May 12, from 7:00 to 8:15 p.m. at the School for Pennington parents to further dissect this topic and share strategies on how to navigate the challenge of parenting around this complex issue. You are welcome to join this conversation even if you aren’t able to attend the Sabet lecture the preceding week. For the May 12 discussion, kindly RSVP to Mrs. DeSouza at email@example.com or 609–737–6118.
Sign up now for Pennington Family Day at the Ballpark: Pennington School families are invited to Pennington Family Day at the Somerset Patriots ballpark. The evening will feature faculty member Tom Liwosz throwing out the first pitch, an all-you-can-eat buffet in the picnic area, and fireworks. Cost: $26 per person. Make your reservations through the alumni office at firstname.lastname@example.org by April 30 and get a free Pennington baseball hat or visor. The festivities will begin at 7:05 p.m. on Saturday, June 27. The ballpark is located at 860 East Main Street, Bridgewater Township, NJ.
Upper School--April 24, 2015
Summer programs for Upper Schoolers: Upper School students wanting to get a head start on their college essays or to work on their field hockey or soccer skills have some good options on campus this summer. Click here for more information.
Sophomores to hear speaker on mental illness: On Wednesday, April 29, at 9:30 a.m., members of the Class of 2017 will hear a speaker from Minding Your Mind, a nonprofit educational organization that provides speakers with inspirational stories about their struggles with mental illness. Their powerful stories are shared in the hope of challenging the stigma around mental health issues and inspiring change. Speaker Carl Antisell has extensive experience educating young people and their families about mental health issues, as well as advocating for more openness surrounding youth mental health, specifically the challenges and stigma facing youth in recovery. He is a founder of the Philadelphia chapter of Young People in Recovery, a national advocacy organization. For more information, get in touch with Mrs. Desouza at 609–737–6118 or email@example.com.
2015 Stephen Crane Writing Contest under way: The English Department has announced that it is accepting submissions for the 2015 Stephen Crane Writing Contest. Crane attended The Pennington School before going on to become an important figure in American letters and an early exponent of literary realism, achieving acclaim as a writer of fiction, a poet and a journalist. The contest seeks to celebrate the career of this gifted writer and his connection to the School and the gifted writers who follow in his path. It is open to all Upper School students and is judged by members of the English Department and the advisor to the literary magazine.
There are three categories in the competition: poetry, short stories (original fiction of 5–7 pages), and personal essays (works designed to inform or entertain the reader, express an opinion, or relate an important experience or event that served to change the author). Students may submit only one work within any category, but may submit works in more than one category. Works may have been previously submitted for a class assignment, the literary magazine, or other purpose. Submissions should be free from errors in grammar and punctuation. Poems should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, short stories to email@example.com, and essays to firstname.lastname@example.org. Submissions will be accepted until May 8, 2015.
Summer Global Leadership Seminar in July: The Summer Global Leadership Seminar for rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors, sponsored by the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia and The Wharton School, is scheduled for July 20–23 at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. The theme for 2015 is “China’s Role on a Shifting World Stage.” Through guest lectures and workshops, students will explore the economic, geopolitical and cultural impact of China’s recent emergence as a world powerhouse. Students will also participate in a simulation, playing the roles of world leaders as they respond to a mock critical event. The seminar will culminate in a daylong field trip to Washington, DC, where students will meet with policymakers at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and be given a special tour of the Chinese Embassy. Because of generous sponsorship from our partners at the WAC-Philadelphia, the cost for the weeklong seminar is only $150. For more information, visit www.wacphila.org/education/global_leadership_seminar or contact Dr. Sisserson for further details. Space is limited, so apply soon!
Junior/Senior Prom May 29: The Pennington School will host its Junior/Senior Prom at The Franklin Institute on Friday, May 29, from 7:00 to 11:00 p.m. The cost of each ticket is $100. Students may reserve their ticket(s) with Mrs. Iorio; note: dates are optional. Reservations must be accompanied by payment; checks should be made payable to The Pennington School.
Students and their guests are required to ride a coach bus to The Franklin Institute from The Pennington School and back. Non-Pennington junior or senior guests must complete a guest permission form available from Mrs. Iorio or by downloading it here.
Commencement invitations available: Pennington seniors may pick up Commencement invitations to send to relatives and family friends. Members of the Class of 2015 should stop by to see Ms. Wendy Ward at Wesley Alumni House, where each senior will be given ten (10) invitations; extras may become available. Please note that invitations are not necessary to attend the June 6 Commencement, when seating is freely available. These invitations serve primarily as graduation announcements.
Promenade is back!: Parents are invited to come to the Campus Center Plaza on May 29 from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. for an opportunity to take photos before students board the buses to attend the Junior/Senior Prom. There will be food, as well as photographers to take photos of students with their friends, all compliments of The Pennington School Parents Association. After the students leave for the prom, parents are invited to remain for a party from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
Mi casa es tu casa!: Consider hosting an exchange student next fall. The World Language Department is looking for generous and welcoming families willing to host French and Spanish students in late September and October 2015. Families of French and Spanish students from all levels preferred, but we would love to hear from other families interested as well. Students considering traveling to France or Spain during the spring of 2016 must seriously consider this opportunity. If you are interested, please contact Sra. Lida Castro at email@example.com.
Middle School--April 24, 2015
Pennington Summer Camps—Spread the word!: Sports, arts, and academic enrichment camps for rising fifth- through ninth-graders will begin June 29 and end August 14. Information is available by clicking here. Several camps are close to capacity, so be sure to register as soon as possible!
Chess Club team defeats Beijing High
In mid-April, Pennington's Chess Club team won four rounds of chess out of five, playing against Beijing High School 101. "While their best was able to beat our best," says advisor Bob Flannery, "we overcame all the rest of their players."
Sixth-graders study genetics
Pennington sixth-graders recently completed a fun activity as part of their study of genetics, called “Have your DNA and eat it too!” They built models of the double-helix structure of DNA, using two Twizzlers as the sugar phosphate backbone and colored gummy bears representing the matching base pairs. Students learned that certain bases pair across from each other on each “rung” of the ladder and made sure to line up the proper-colored gummy bears on the toothpick “rungs.” After completing and labeling their model, they had the pleasure of eating their sweet creation!
Elective class builds robots made of Lego
Twelve Middle School students are hard at work in the Lego Robotics elective class. Once they have assembled their robots from Lego, they will begin programming them to complete required tasks in class competitions. The Middle School has been investing in the program over the past few years, adding one or two new robotics kits each year.