News & Blog

Family Newsletter – Jun. 10, 2016

4th Grade Wax Museum A2’s Hot New Attraction

Push the button in front of one of the 4th graders’ displays, and their historical figure comes to life and tells his/her story. It’s like a wax museum, full of history and information, but so much more lifelike and creative.
+ See more photos on Facebook


Letter from the Head of School

Dear Parents,

This past May, the Emerson Board of Trustees elected its slate of officers and members. Please join me in congratulating our newest trustees and officers, and giving our great thanks to our retiring trustees.

New to the 2016-2017 Board are the following trustees:

  • Timothy Dickinson, father of Sebastian ‘23, is a partner in the law firm of Paul Hastings LLP in Washington, DC, and he is a Professor from Practiceat the University of Michigan Law School. He has served on a number of boards and founded the International Legal Resource Center, a joint project between the American Bar Association and the United Nations Development Programme to provide legal support for emerging democracies.
  • Dave McDowell most recently served as Executive Director of the Ronald McDonald House of Ann Arbor from 1993 to 2009. Prior to this, he was a teacher and administrator at two independent schools in New York, and he was the Head of Greenhills School for ten years. Dave has served on boards and committees of several Ann Arbor institutions, including the Rotary Club of Ann Arbor (president, 1999-2000), Washtenaw United Way, Helpsource, Girl Scouts of the Huron Valley, and First Congregational Church.
  • Peter Toogood, father of Julian ‘18, is the Senior Vice President for Chemistry and Chemical Biology for Lycera, an Ann Arbor startup company founded by a former Emerson parent. He retains a position as Adjunct Professor in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Michigan. Peter has held a variety of positions outside of chemistry, including serving as secretary and treasurer of his local homeowner’s association. He is just now completing his service as President of the Board of Allen Creek Preschool.

The members of the 2016-2017 Executive Committee are as follows:

  • Jennifer Pinto, Chair. Jennifer is mother of two alumni (Allison ‘13, Joey ‘15) and previously served as Vice Chair.
  • Maria Coolican, Vice Chair. Maria is mother of Mary Katherine ‘18 and Liam ‘15. She joined the Board in 2015.
  • Cathy Halloran, Treasurer. Cathy continues in her role as Treasurer. She is the mother of Nora ‘18 and three alumni (Thomas ‘15, Michael ‘11, Margaret ‘07).
  • Jeff Warren, Secretary. Jeff is the parent of an Emerson alumna (Anne ‘05) and joined the Board this past year.

Finally, we say farewell to two outstanding trustees who are completing their terms of service.

  • Mark Mueting joined the Board in 2013. During his time, he has been the Chair of the Development Committee, helping to ensure the swift and robust completion of the Building STEAM Campaign, as well as the ongoing success of our Annual Fund campaigns and auctions. Mark has also worked tirelessly to ensure that the school develops its endowment. In his day job, Mark is the Senior Vice President for Wealth Management at Merrill Lynch. He and his wife Mary will be celebrating the graduation of their daughter Mara ‘16 this June.
  • Glenn Barba also joined the Board in 2013 and became Chair of the Emerson Board of Trustees in 2014. His leadership was invaluable in order to ensure a successful head transition. Glenn’s calm authority, careful analysis, and warm sense of humor have helped Emerson to experience its greatest successes ever. Glenn gave tirelessly of himself to the school while also fulfilling his full-time position as Vice President, Controller, and Chief Accounting Officer of CMS Energy and Consumers Energy. Glenn and his wife Jen are the proud parents of two Emerson alumni (Lindsey ‘15 and Michael ‘13).

If you are interested in learning more about our trustees, head on over to ourwebsite to read their biographies. And if you’d like to learn how you might participate on our committees, please email the Chair at to share your interest.

Be well,

John Huber

All School News and Info

Main Dish Pizza, Milk Orders Ended June 10

Final Pizza Lunch is Wednesday, June 15

Please send a lunch with students the last week of school, June 13–16. Main Dish, milk orders, and Friday Pizza Lunch ended on Friday, June 10. ESPO will provide complimentary pizza for all students on Wednesday, June 15, but please send a snack if your child would like one.

Pick Up Student Medication in Office

After June 30, Unclaimed Meds Will Be Destroyed

Student medication will be available for pick-up in the offices through June. Please pick up any you would like to save by June 30.

Your Gift Matters: Science Tools That Empower

Thank You for Investing in Hands-On Learning Resources

“If you could spend a morning in one of our science classrooms (and I would be so pleased if you did), you would quickly see evidence of specific things that make a profound difference in the educational experience of our kids. For example, good quality tools and hardware empower lab work, field work, and real world, hands-on investigations. A perfect example are the 12 new microscopes that we were able to purchase after significant contributions from Emerson families. In my years at Emerson, at least one thing has become crystal clear. Truly excellent education requires investment from all of us. It is my pleasure and honor to work in a community of givers. I encourage all of us to contribute as we can and to take pride in our collective accomplishments. Thanks you!!”
— Tim Wilson, 6th Grade Science Teacher and Annual Fund donor

Just 58 More Families Participating = $25,000 Challenge Gift

Annual Fund gifts helps fill the gap between tuition and the cost of running the school. If you have already made a gift to the Annual Fund (giving to financial aid at the Auction counts) thank you very much. Your support is deeply appreciated! If you have not yet made your gift, please join the 100% of faculty, staff, and trustees who participate in the Annual Fund by giving at

Class Giving Percentages: K: 71%, 1st: 64%, 2nd: 63%, 3rd: 61%, 4th:78%, 5th: 61%, 6th: 66%, 7th: 64%, 8th: 36%

Convenient Ways to Give

  • Online: By credit card
  • Curbside drop-off: cash or check accepted from your car
  • Offices: Send cash or a check with your child to drop off
  • Call: Beth at 734.665.9005, x305

New Openings in Popular Summer Camps

A few more openings have just become available in the popular camps listed below. Register online for these and many other camps this summer.

  • Engineering Challenges, Grades 4-8: July 11-15, 9am-12pm
  • Culinary Creations, Grades 2-5: July 11-15, 1-4pm
  • Project Runway, Grades 3-6: July 18-22, 9am-12pm
    Led by Emerson 4th Grade Teacher Marchell Burgess and Librarian Linda Lakshminarayanan
  • Rocket Building, Grades 4-8: August 1-5, 9am-12pm
    Led by Emerson K-3 science teacher Michael Wilson


Supervisors Needed for Field Day on June 15

Field day is a day of games, pizza, extended recess, dunk tanks, and so much fun. ESPO coordinates, and parents make it a success. Please sign up to join in on the fun by supervising an activity.
+ Questions? Contact Stephanie Zabinko at
+ Volunteer to supervise a Field Day activity

Childcare Available on June 17, Graduation Day

No School Except for Band and Orchestra Performing

The last official day of school for grades K-7 (excluding Band and Orchestra performing at graduation) will be Thursday, June 16, 2016. This day will be used for school-wide awards and events as we have done in the past. Then on Friday, June 17, our regularly scheduled graduation exercises will be held in the Arts and Innovation Center, with Band and Orchestra performing as before. Our 8th grade families (including siblings) are invited to attend graduation.

As this was a change to this year’s schedule, free childcare will be provided for Emerson students in grades K-7 on Friday, June 17 from 7:30am–12:00pm. Reservations are required.
+ Email Beth Muszkiewicz to reserve childcare for your child

Jill Nolan Still Seeking a Marrow Donor

Pick Up a Test Kit in the Lower School Office

Jill Nolan (1st Grade Teacher at Emerson School) was diagnosed with AML leukemia in March. Jill has conquered her first round of chemo, but now she needs to find a bone marrow donor.

Find out if you are a qualified donor for Jill (age requirement is 18-44) by joining theNational Bone Marrow Donor Registry, which is where the doctors are looking for Jill’s match. It is as simple as giving a saliva sample, and you can do it one of two ways:

  • Pick up a test kit in the Lower School Office. Once you complete your swab test and paperwork return it to the office, Emerson will send it back to Be The Match.
  • Online at Enter promo code “emerson16” to be associated with Jill’s drive.

+ Read the complete letter from Jill’s family here
+ Learn more about the National Bone Marrow Donor Registry and join


Used Book Sale a Huge Success

$491.32 Raised for ACS in Honor of Jill Nolan

This year’s used book sale was a special labor of love because we knew that every penny earned would be donated to the American Cancer Society in honor of our much loved first grade teacher, Jill Nolan. People of all ages were generous with their donations of books and their shopping money as well. The annual joy of seeing children carefully select the perfect books for themselves of others and then carefully count out their change was augmented by the thoughtful children who would spontaneously decide to give the last of their change as a donation for such a good cause. Some people even brought in larger amounts with the express purpose of donating. We are so lucky to have such caring and generous people as a part of the Emerson family. The American Cancer Society now has an additional $491.32 because of your thoughtfulness. Happy summer reading to all. — Linda Lakshminarayanan, Librarian

All Library Materials Are Now Due

Accounts Charged for Outstanding Materials After June 15

Please return any books or movies that you have borrowed before the end of the school year. School accounts will be charged the replacement cost of materials not received by the library by June 15, 2015.

Summer Reading with Ann Arbor District Library

The Ann Arbor District Library has a large summer reading program with multiple way to collect points that can be traded for books and other items. Register at the library or online, and get more information about recording what is read, attending events, and tackling on-line challenges.
+ Learn more

All Emerson Students Eligible for AADL Cards

Did you know that every Emerson student, no matter where they live, is eligible for an Ann Arbor District Library card at no charge because we are a school in the area?  All you need to do is bring some proof that the child attends Emerson (a photo in the yearbook, the school ID that came with class pictures, a report card, etc.) and they will issue a library card good for one year. This can be done at any branch. Then you can sign up for the reading program at the same time.

ESPO Positions Need Parent Volunteers

Help wanted. No experience required. Compensation: none. Benefits: the feeling that comes from volunteering and being involved with our Emerson community. There are a number of positions still available for next year’s ESPO. Particularly, we need a Co-Chair and Pizza Lunch Volunteer Chair and Co-Chair. What a great way to meet other families and to give back to the School.
+ More information and openings
+ Contact Chair Diana Rooks or Co-Chair Elizabeth for additional information


Annual Parent Feedback Survey

Tell Us How This Year at Emerson Was

Please tell us what is working and what could be better at Emerson by participating in this anonymous and confidential survey. Make your voice heard, whether you’re delighted or frustrated, and we promise to use the insight to make Emerson even better.
+ Participate in this quick parent survey

Middle School News

Middle School Book Buyback

For your convenience, buyback will be offered online only at It’s simple and you can login anytime, 24/7, to MBS from your computer. No need to worry about dates or times for the books to be returned to the school.
+ See detailed instructions

6th Grade Books to Keep for Next Year

Language Arts: Write Source and Write Source Skills Book
Latin: Jenney’s First Year Latin (textbook and workbook)
Social Studies: Creating America
Spanish: Ven Conmigo! Level 1 (textbook, activity book, and grammar book)

7th Grade Books to Keep for Next Year

Algebra: Algebra 1
Latin: Jenney’s First Year Latin (textbook and workbook); Bantam New College Latin/English Dictionary
Spanish: Ven Conmigo! Level 2 (textbook, workbook, and grammar book)

Schedule for Last Week of School

We are eager to celebrate the many accomplishments of our students, recognize our soon-to-be graduates, and have some good fun together.
+ See the original, detailed email from Andy Zimmer

  • Monday: World Language Soccer Tournament
  • Tuesday: Service Day and Emerson’s Got Talent
  • Wednesday: Field Day
  • Thursday: Awards, Yearbooks, Dance
  • Friday: NO SCHOOL, Graduation


Summer All-School Read Options

Students Can Choose One of Five Books to Read

There are five summer book options, and students should choose at least one to read this summer. Students will join a discussion group for their book during the 2016 EPIC days in September. If they read more than one (or all five!) you can select your favorite and join that book club for the discussion. Buy the books through your favorite local or online retailer, or order one of these books through Emerson’s textbook retailer, MBS Direct at
+ See descriptions of all five books

Community Events and Activities

Alum Helping Build Music School in Meru

Emerson alum Orly Rubinfeld is working hard to raise $170,000 to build a music school in Meru. Just $1 from every music student in the state of Michigan would accomplish that, and 2,000 students from five schools will benefit.
+ Learn more

Alum Wins Youth of the Year Award, 4-H 1st Place

Randie Jo Evans (class of 2015) recently won the Michigan Justin Morgan Horse Association’s Youth of the Year contest, and this fall she’ll compete in Youth of the Year National Finals in Oklahoma City. She and two teammates also earned first place in the 2016 Michigan 4-H Equine Educational Expo’s Hippology event, and will represent Michigan in the Eastern National 4-H Horse Roundup’s Hippology contest this fall in Louisville, KY.

The Ann Arbor Summer Festival

Top of the Park starts on June 10! Check out all the great family-friendly events