News & Blog

Family Newsletter – June 13, 2014

See original email

Letter from Jerry

Jerry the SluggerHello Families,

It never seems to fail that the rush and madness of these last few weeks can always be halted by the shared ceremony that is Emerson’s graduation. Today was even more poignant than most as we were treated to a larger number of student speeches. These heartfelt presentations highlighted what is truly important to all of us as we look back and reflect on the journey that has been the 2013-2014 school year.

The praises for friends, teachers, and parents were a common refrain from our students, as was their great sense of confidence as they head out on their next adventure. Oh yes, there were some worthy moments of wisdom shared by adults today but, by far, the lasting lessons and memories of today were provided by our remarkable graduates. Best of luck to all of them and have wonderful and restful summer.

Jerry Loewen
Head of School

All School News

The Search for Emerson’s Next Head of School

Provide Input and Contribute to the Process
If you couldn’t make it to one of the two parent input meetings held this week, you can still share your feedback by answering the following survey questions:

  • What about Emerson School must not change?
  • What about Emerson School must change?
  • What skills must the new head possess?
  • What personal attributes must the new head possess?

+ Participate in the survey (available through June 20)

Stay Informed
Stay up to date on the search process, read previous communications, and see the Search Committee on Emerson’s website at You can also connect directly with the Search Committee by emailing

Linda’s Summer Reading Challenge

Students entering grades 2-8 have an opportunity to win one of three Kindles this summer, donated by a very generous Emerson grandparent, by reading a new book. The challenge for Emerson students:

  1. Read a book he/she has not previous read.
  2. Email a summary to Linda by September 17, stating the author, title, a little of the story, and why this book was or was not a worthy read.

Only submissions from Emerson students will be accepted, but younger students and/or students without email accounts may dictate their submissions to parents. Students can only enter once, but Linda would still like to hear about every book they read.

One Kindle will be presented to a 2nd or 3rd grade student, another will go to a 4th or 5th grade student, and the third will be given to a student in the middle school. Previous winners are asked not to enter so that others may have a better chance of winning.

Summer Reading Lists Available

Linda will be happy to prepare a list of suggested summer reading for your child.  Please contact her at  While you wait, check out her reading blog, In Linda’s Library.

Remember Your Student Account Payments

Please remember to pay your student balances.  Final report cards cannot not be released on accounts that have balances.  Thank you! —The Business Office

Summer Tutors Are Available

Emerson’s Learning Support staff has compiled a great list of tutors for students.
+ Emerson teachers available for tutoring
+ Other local tutors

Annual Fund: 21 Families Needed to Reach Goal

Every gift, big and small, helps us reach our Annual Fund participation goal. A special thanks to the 66% of new Emerson families who made their first gift to the Annual Fund.Giving Percentage by Year
Thank you to the 56% of families who have already made an Annual Fund gift. Last year 62% of families gave to the Annual Fund. Please be one of the 21 families we still need to surpass that number by giving:

Pick Up Children’s Medication

Please stop by the office to pick up your child’s medication by Friday, June 13. Any medication left will be discarded.

Building STEAM Progress

Walls are Up
We are seeing huge progress daily. Walls are up for the Middle School addition and the foundations have been poured for the Arts & Innovation center.

Thank you to everyone who has made a pledge or gift and helped us inch closer to our $500,000 campaign challenge. WIth an entire community’s support, we can reach our goal by June 30th!

Please Make a Gift or Pledge

  • Pledges can be paid over a period of up to five years, and no payment is necessary by June 30th to meet our challenge- just your commitment.
  • If you’re ready to make your gift,  click here to print your pledge form
  • Questions can be directed to Sue Johnson

Middle School News

All Middle School Summer Read: Okay for Now

Okay for Now, by Gary Schmidt, is the story of an 8th grade boy named Doug Sweiteck, who moves to a new town during the Vietnam-war years.  His life changes when he is introduced to John Audubon’s Birds of America at the local library and learns many principles of art from the local librarian.  Doug also has to struggle with adjusting to a new school, teachers who label him as the “skinny thug” and the return of his brother from the war.  His story is one of perseverance, compassion, and strength.

This book is available for order, along with other Middle School text books, through MBS, through local book stores like Nicola’s Books, and online book outlets like Amazon and iBooks(They are NOT available in the Middle School office, as incorectly stated in last week’s newsletter.)

Middle School Book Buy Back

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

  • JAPANESE: Adventure in Japanese 1 – Textbook, Workbook and Flashcards
  • 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

  • ALGEBRA: Algebra 1 Concepts and Skills (Unless going into Geometry)
  • JAPANESE: Adventure in Japanese 2 – Textbook and Workbook
  • LATIN: Jenney’s First Year Latin – Textbook, Workbook and Bantam Latin/English Dictionary
  • SPANISH: Ven Conmigo! Level 2 – Textbook, Activity book, Grammar book

Note: The 2014/2015 Middle School Books will not post on the MBS website until July 1, 2014. Prior to July 1, 2014 the 2013/2014 Middle School Book list will still be posted.

Community News & Events

Middle School Learn to Row

Starts Monday, June 23, for all 6th-8th graders

Get on the water this spring and try an incredible sport with the Washtenaw Rowing Center! Rowing (aka crew) is flourishing in our community, with nationally competitive boys and girls teams at all three Ann Arbor high schools, as well as top collegiate programs at universities throughout the state. Now middle school students also have the chance to give it a try, in a fun and relaxed atmosphere where they’ll learn basic technique and get on the water to experience what this exciting sport is all about! Space is limited- sign up today to get your spot!
+ Find more information and sign up, or contact Program Director Kit Bennett

The Sound of Music

June 13, 14, and 20 at 7:00pm, June 14, 21, and 22 at 2:00pm

See Emerson 4th grader Olivia Goosman (Gretl von Trapp) and 5th grader Lacey Cooper (Marta von Trapp) in the Arbor Opera Theater’s performance of The Sound of Music. It is the most popular movie musical of all time, and will appear at the Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre in Ann Arbor. Tickets are available online.
+ Learn more