News & Blog

Family Newsletter – Dec. 11, 2015

What a Performance at Seussical’s Opening Night!

Bravo to the Seussical Jr. cast and crew who treated our community to an outstanding musical on Thursday night! WOW! And an extra round of applause to the teachers, parents, and volunteers who give so much of themselves so our students can shine like they do.
+ Get tickets to the Friday or Saturday performances


Letter from the Head of School

John Huber ProfileDear Parents,

Winter Break is almost upon us! Just one week from now, we will gather our students together in the Arts & Innovation Center for a winter sharing celebration, filling the room with songs and joyful noises. Then at noon (or 11:45am for our Kindergarteners), we will dismiss our students and faculty to begin their much-deserved and well-earned break.

Before we close out the calendar year, I want to thank all of you who have helped to make our fall Annual Fund campaign a success. Our entire faculty, staff, and board made their pledges this past September. At last count, the number of current parent donors contributing this fall had almost doubled, and of this group, participation from new families has almost tripled. We are well on our way to achieving our goal of 100% parent participation.

Your Annual Fund gift supports our many excellent programs at Emerson. It seems that every day I come to Emerson, there’s something scheduled to delight and surprise. To name just a few recent examples, our HydroFest Science Fair brought together students and families for an evening of scientific wonder; our Middle School Soccer Team once again achieved victory in our athletic league; and our band and orchestra concerts have given our talented musicians many opportunities to shine. We simply couldn’t do it without your help.

For those who haven’t participated in the Annual Fund yet, I encourage you to make Emerson a philanthropic priority before the calendar year ends. Please click here to go to our secure website to make your gift. Join the many, many families who have already done so, and help us to enrich our program for our students.

With deepest thanks,


All School News and Info

Reminders About Next Week

  • Pizza Lunch will be on Thursday
  • Friday is a half day with Kindergarten dismissal at 11:45am and dismissal for grades 1–8 at noon. No afternoon buses.
  • Pancake Breakfast on Friday (more info below)

Get Tickets for the Emerson Musical, Seussical Jr.

Remaining Showtimes

Tickets are almost sold out for the Saturday performance, and tonight’s tickets are going fast. Invite friends and family and get your tickets ASAP.
+ Tickets and more information about the show

  • Friday, Dec. 11 at 7:00pm
  • Saturday, Dec. 12 at 2:00pm

2015 Geography Bee Sign-Ups End Friday

Tuesday, Dec. 15, 11:15am–1:15pm in the AIC

All Emerson students in grades 4–8 are welcome to participate in the free, fun competition. Signing up is very easy: Students write their name and the letters “GB” on a piece of paper, then hand it to Lenny Dale any day between now and when he leaves school on Friday, Dec. 11. Understand that Lenny thinks kids should learn to deal with deadlines, and this one is firm. There is no ‘too early’, but there is definitely ‘too late’.

Google Expeditions on Monday

360º Virtual Reality Classroom Field Trips

Google is bringing its new Google Expeditions product to Emerson for an entire day on Monday, Dec. 14. This new virtual reality program will allow teachers to take their classes on one of 135 virtual field trips related to your child’s current studies. Students will be immersed in experiences that bring abstract concepts to life and give a deeper understanding of the world beyond the classroom.

+ Watch a brief video about the Google Expedition program

Lost and Found to be Donated Thursday, Dec. 17

Please check the Lost and Found for any missing items before Thursday, Dec. 17. Any unclaimed items will be packed up and donated to a local charity.

Auction Parent Packet Arriving Tuesday

Save the Date: Friday, Mar. 11 at Barton Hills Country Club

Your Emerson Auction Parent Packet will be sent home on Tuesday, December 8th via backpack mail. Invitations will be mailed in early February. We are looking forward to another fabulous evening that greatly benefits your children.
+ Contact Beth Anderson to learn more about the Auction

2016 Auction Leadership

  • Parent Director:  Barbara Hoffman
  • Acquisitions Co-Chairs:  Kris Evangelista and Shannon Stewart
  • Class Baskets Chair:  Stephanie Zabinko
  • Data Team:  Caroline Begola, Dana DeBord and Suzan Duenyas
  • Decorations Co-Chairs:  Christine Kim and Diana Rooks
  • Displays & Packaging Co-Chairs:  Kathy Akhoury,  Barbara Hoffman and Debbie Thom
  • Donation Pick up Chair:  Liz Tolbert
  • Raffles & Classroom Offerings Chair:  Elizabeth Caswell
  • Wine Pull Chair:  Hanna Song

Pancake Breakfast on Dec. 18

Food, Fun, and Service to Our Community

This annual pancake breakfast brings our students and community together around food and supports Emerson’s community service initiative. This year the funds raised will go to support Emerson’s community service efforts throughout the year, and any student who brings in one or more pair of unused pair of socks will receive $1.00 off their pancake breakfast. This sock drive will support the 2015 Toasty Toes Sock Drive current 4th grader Parini Rao and alum Anvit Rao have coordinated for several years.
+ More info

Winter After-School Enrichment Classes

Register Now for Classes Jan. 11 – Mar. 18

Winter Enrichment Classes let children dive even deeper into the subjects they love. Parents can now register for Winter Enrichment Classes, which begin the week of Jan. 11 and end Mar. 18. Class registration is on a first-come first-served basis, and most fill quickly, so please register as soon as possible.
+ See class times, descriptions, and how to register

2015 Year-End Giving Reminders

Thank you to the 30% of families who have already made a pledge or donated to the Annual Fund. If you’ve not yet made your gift or pledge, please know that gifts at every level are important; we value your participation!

2015 Receipt Deadlines

Our offices are closed beginning at noon on Friday, Dec. 18th and hand deliveries should be made before that date.

  • Credit card online: Receipted the same day your gift is made.
  • Credit card by reply card: Receipted the day it is processed. For a 2015 receipt, please hand submit by Dec. 18 or mail so it will arrive by Dec. 24.
  • Check by reply card: Receipted for the date written on your check.
  • Gifts of Securities: Typically initiated by mid-December (contact your financial adviser for their guidelines). Contact Sue Johnson for transfer instructions.

+ Make your gift by credit card online
+ Print a reply card to accompany a check or credit card gift in person or by mail
+ Questions? Please contact Beth Anderson at (734) 665-5662 x305.  

Current Giving Level by Grade:
K: 42%, 1st: 36%, 2nd: 34%, 3rd: 25%, 4th: 54%, 5th: 27%, 6th: 32%, 7th: 32%,8th: 18%

Check Your Student’s Backpack for Auction Info

The Emerson Auction Parent Packet was sent home in student backpacks on Tuesday, Dec. 8th. Make sure to take a look for information about volunteering, donating items, sponsorship, and advertising in the catalog.
+ Contact Beth Anderson to learn more about the Auction

Wanted: Your Junk – Our Treasure

Linda’s Library Contest Will Use Small Toys as Prizes

What you consider excess is something our young readers hope to win. For the past 20 years, Linda has hosted a contest in the library that awards students with prizes for reading. Everyone wins, but prizes are running dangerously low. Please bring your unwanted toys (e.g. fast food toys, goodie bag toys, things your child has outgrown) to Linda, and she will ensure it makes a child very happy.

Upcycle Elective Will Repurpose Your Junk

Middle school students in the Upcycling elective need it. Below is a list of items students have requested for their upcycling projects (reusing discarded objects or materials in such a way as to create a product of a higher quality or value than the original).
+ See a list of requested junk

Lower School News

Science Olympiad Registration is Open

Open to All 2nd–5th Graders, Coaches Needed

Emerson School will once again participate in the Washtenaw Elementary Science Olympiad (WESO), a county-wide science event scheduled for May 14, 2016. All students in grades 2-5 are encouraged to participate, and parents are needed to coach teams.
+ More info, including event descriptions and resources
+ Register online by Dec. 21

Community News and Events

4th Grader Coordinating Toasty Toes Sock Drive

Save $1 on Emerson Pancake Breakfast with Sock Donation

Emerson 4th grader Parini Rao and alum Anvit Rao have coordinated the Toasty Toes Sock Drive for several years and provided hundreds of socks to families in our community. Collection boxes are located throughout the school and near entrances, but families are encouraged to bring their socks on Friday, Dec. 18 to receive $1 off their Pancake Breakfast (see above).
+ Learn more

Middle Schoolers Invited to Audition for TEDxYouth@AnnArbor

Final Two Auditions on Dec. 15, and 17

Does your student have an idea worth spreading? For the first time, middle school students can audition to be a speaker, host, or performer in the third annual TEDxYouth@AnnArbor event. Every high school in Ann Arbor participates in this incredible student-led, student-attended event.
+ Learn more and sign up to audition

Alum in Movie Premiering Nov. 11 in Ann Arbor

Playing at Ann Arbor’s Quality 16 Theater for One Week

Emerson alum Lily Hetherman has a role in The Girl in the Book, which is opening tonight at select theaters throughout the U.S., including Quality 16 in Ann Arbor. Look for Lily in the bookstore scene.

1st Grader Performing in Neo Nutcracker at WCC

Friday, Nov. 11, 7:00pm at Washtenaw Community College

Emerson 1st grader Joesph Ranzini will be a Toy Soldier in this modern interpretation of the classic Nutcracker ballet. His sister Liliana will also perform as one of the mice.
+ Learn more

Two 5th Graders to Perform in Duet on Ice

Sunday, Dec. 13, 2:00–4:00pm at A2 Ice Cube

Emerson 5th graders Sophia Hildebrandt and Asha Owens will perform a duet on ice as part of the Ann Arbor Figure Skating Club’s 2015 Winter Exhibition.

Alum in Nutcracker with Dance Alliance

Sunday, Dec. 13, 2:00pm and 7:00pm at Saline HS

Looking for something festive and fun for family this holiday season? Emersonalum Alexis Huczek will be performing in Flowers, Soldiers, Chocolate and Snow, as part of The Nutcracker, presented by the Dance Alliance.
+ Learn more

10 Students and Alums in Nutcracker with Ann Arbor Dance Classics

Dec. 12–13, Various Times

Emerson students and alums Jada Wooten, Danielle Stevanus, Olivia Hollenbeck, Gigi Hauptman, Ellie Kim, Amelia Lunde, Adelyn Mazak, Amy Pandofi, Ella Sinha, and Faith Pearson will be performing in The Nutcracker with Ann Arbor Dance Classics. Break a leg!
+ Learn more

Special Detroit Symphony Orchestra Ticket Offer

Saturday, Dec. 12, 11:00am

Celebrate the holidays with selections from Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, festive carols, a sing-a-long with the Detroit Children’s Choir—all featuring the Detroit Symphony Youth Orchestra. Use the promo code “JOLLY” to receive $5 tickets to Santa’s Little Helpers!
+ Learn more