News & Blog

Family Newsletter – Oct. 16, 2015

Math Review, Hoops-Style


Letter from the Head of School

John HuberDear Parents,

This past Monday, as I sat in on our weekly Middle School Assembly, our student presenter gleefully announced that his classmates were about to enjoy a five-day weekend. And while our presenter may not have fully acknowledged the reasons for the long weekend, the faculty in the room knew exactly the value of these days.

Any time we close school for students, we want to be sure that we do so for very good reasons. Outstanding educators such as those at Emerson are focused on lifelong learning, continuous improvement, and clear communication, and these days provided us with the necessary time to focus on these goals. This past week during Parent-Teacher Conferences, our teachers sought to engage in face-to-face conversations with our families and strengthen the home-school connection. (By the way, I want to thank all the very kind parents who provided us with food for our conferences.  Our teachers are well-loved and well-fed!)

My question to you, as it has been during my parent coffees, is simply this – does the structure of Parent-Teacher Conferences work? Does it facilitate the “A to B” discussions I spoke about at our Curriculum Nights, the opportunities to meet in person to talk about our students, your children? I look forward to receiving your feedback as we tinker with the structure to best meet this goal.

This coming Monday, the faculty and I will be travelling to University Liggett School and Grosse Pointe Academy for the biennial Association of Independent Michigan Schools (AIMS) conference. There we will join over 1,000 fellow educators to choose from over 75 sessions, all focused on the 6 C’s of 21st century learning – critical thinking, creativity, conscientious living, communication, collaboration, and choice. Additionally, many of our trustees will be arriving later to attend a talk by the Chief Operating Officer of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), Donna Orem, who will be discussing trends affecting both Michigan schools and independent schools across the nation.

The lessons gained from our AIMS conference, and the information shared during our Parent-Teacher Conferences, will both help us to be better educators when the students return on Tuesday.

Be well,

All School News and Info

Volunteers needed for Halloween Carnival

Sign up early to secure your preferred spot

Halloween is quickly approaching and plans are underway for our ESPO Halloween Carnival (Friday, October 30)! This is such a fun event for the kids (and adults), but we need lots of help. There are many ways to help – donating items, spending time helping decorate, and helping on the day of the carnival.
+ Contact Jamie Sinha with questions
+ Sign Up to help!

Announcing This Year’s Emerson Science Fair: Hydrofest 2015!

The Science Fair will be held on November 18

Here’s a question for you: It’s colorless, odorless, tasteless, transparent, incompressible, the universal solvent, the only common substance found naturally in all three states of matter, one of the only substances that is less dense as a solid than a liquid, and absolutely necessary for all life as we know it on planet earth. What are we talking about?

WATER, of course–one of the most amazing substances on our planet, and one of the most important! And it’s time we took a closer look at this miracle on earth, this simple substance that supports us all. The Emerson Science Department is pleased to announce that this year we will be presenting a science fair of incredible hydrological proportions– a virtual festival of H2O–something we call…HYDROFEST 2015!
+ More Info and How to Sign-Up

Pledge Your Support

New this Year: Our Fall Pledge Focus

Every member (100%) of Emerson’s Faculty & Staff and every Emerson Trustee has already made their gift or pledge to the 2015-2016 Annual Fund. But we still need the support of 100% of Emerson families because tuition revenue does not cover the full cost of your child’s Emerson education.

  • NEW – Fall Pledges: Make your commitment today and fulfill your pledge before June 15. Call,  or use the pledge card received in your first day packet or pick one up at the office.
  • Give Online: Check it off your list by giving at

+ Questions? Contact Beth Anderson, (734)665-5662 x305

Auction 2016 is Now Underway

Save the Date: Friday, Mar. 11, 2016

Thank you to all of the parents who attended this week’s Auction Kick-Off meeting. Many have already stepped up to fill important roles, but volunteers are still needed to chair committees, serve as a leaders, or to be Auction Ambassadors. Please get involved and join the fun.
+ Learn more and volunteer

2016 Auction Leadership

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

Missing a Laptop or an iPhone?

Items have been turned into the Middle School Office

An ASUS laptop was found on the floor in middle school this week. Also a black iPhone has been in the office for several weeks. If either of these items are yours, please contact Mrs. Hodges in the Middle School Office.
+ Email Mrs. Hodges, or call 734.665.5662 ext 301.

Lower School News and Info

Middle School Information Nights

Information Sessions for all 4th and 5th grade families

For current 4th and 5th grade families, please attend one of our two upcoming Information Nights: Sunday, October 25, 2:00pm or Wednesday, November 17, 7:00pm. This is your best opportunity to see how we build upon the Lower School foundation, and how we continue to educate, inspire, challenge, and empower students as they move up to Middle School.
+ More Information

Middle School News and Info


Students in 5th through 8th grade interested in being a part of the MathCounts team can join coach Hojin Han in MS Room 205 for the first practice session on Friday Nov. 6th from 3:00-4:00 PM. This group is for any mathletes who are interested in working together to develop their math skills in preparation for the Regional (and potentially State) tournament in mid-February. There is no cost to join and no season-long commitment required.
+ For more information, contact Andy Zimmer

Spotlight on Saline High School

Information session scheduled for November 19

Saline High School is hosting an information session where families can learn more about Saline High School as an option for high school.  This event is geared towards students from middle schools that do not have a high school attached to it.

Washtenaw International High School Information

First Information session scheduled for November 10

WIHI will be having information sessions for parents and students on Tuesday November 10, 2015, Wednesday November 18, 2015, Thursday January 7, 2016, and Monday January 11, 2016, all starting at 7:00pm. Application and shadowing opportunities begin in early November. If you would like more information please contact Admissions Coordinator Cherrell Wilson at 734-994-8145 opt. 2 or by email:
+ Visit the WIHI website for more infromation

Community News and Events

Giving: Learning by Teaching in Sri Lanka

Emerson parent Naresh Gunaratham and Emerson students traveled to Sri Lanka to support the Grade Care Center.
+ Read all about it in the feature story in October’s issue of The Ann

E.T. at the Michigan Theater

Sponsored by Emerson on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 1:30pm

Emerson School is a sponsor of the special screening of E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, a classic family movie, and we have passes for Emerson families and friends to see it for free. Pick up complimentary passes for kids and adults in the Lower School office.
+ Learn more

Special Screening of “Beyond Measure”

Presented by The Clonlara School on Oct 24 at 1pm

Be one of the first to view this film. Beyond Measure, What Counts Can’t Be Counted, a film about transforming our educational system from the ground up! There will be a facilitated discussion afterwards. Film will run until 3:30 and be followed by a discussion group.
+ More Info on the film
+ Purchase Tickets

Helping Your Anxious Child: A Group for Parents

4-Week Group Starting Soon

This is a four-week group for parents of children dealing with anxiety and stress at the start of the school year. Dr. Beth Pearson will be teaching parents practical strategies from evidence-based approaches, including what to say, tips, exercises, and how to avoid accidentally increasing fears.
+ Learn more

Eighth Grader, Kendra Wolter, in Ypsi Youth Theatre’s presentation of Twisted Tales of Terror

Friday, Oct 16 – Sunday, Oct 18 at the Riverside Arts Center

A night of chills! An evening of frights! A barrel of laughs! Ypsilanti Youth Theatre presents Twisted Tales of Terror. A storyteller too silly to be sinister and her husband, a hunchback with a heart of gold, decide to guide their audience through some of the world’s most famous horror stories, but the witches, mummies, werewolves and vampires have other ideas about how their stories should end. An uproarious comedy suitable for all ages of children and monsters.
+ Times, ticket and venue information

Fall Auditions Open for the Boychoir of Ann Arbor

Boys aged 7 1/2 to 17 are eligible, auditions are by appointment

The Boychoir of Ann Arbor announces Fall Auditions for all three of its choirs. The Boychoir’s training programs enhance the musical education boys are already receiving through school or private lessons. We focus on competency in sight-singing (reading music) as well as vocal training through semi-private voice lessons.
+ Learn More

Issues for Parenting: Cyber Safety

A free educational series for parents from the Washtenaw Area Council for Children

Life in the internet age is replete with opportunity and connectivity as well as challenges to kids’ privacy and safety. Educators from the Washtenaw Area Council for Children address key cyber safety topics in this free presentation on Thursday, October 22nd, at 7:30pm.
+ More Information – free event but registration required