Belmont Public Schools
Mary Lee Burbank Elementary School
266 School Street | Belmont, MA 02478
phone: 617 - 993 - 5500
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PTA News -- Oct. 31, 2017

In this Week's Newsletter

  • Support the PTA – Give to the Annual Appeal Today
  • Social-Emotional Learning: Open Circle Curriculum at Burbank
  • Mark your calendars: November events
  • Fall Landscape Clean-Up
  • Burbank Gardens Update
  • Join Burbank PTA on Facebook
  • PTA Co-Chairs Needed

But first, a few notes...

Happy Halloween! Don't forget your UNICEF box when you go Trick-or-Treating tonight. Tomorrow, Wednesday, November 1st is Fill A Bucket Day! – wear something orange and turn in your UNICEF collection (or make a donation) on the blacktop before school. Students are also encouraged to fill their classmates' buckets through acts of kindness. Questions? Contact Breda Zimkus or Jim Zimkus.

Thank you staff-appreciation volunteers! Thank you Steph Burt, Harriet Wong, Narine Van Hal, Rachel Costello, Kim Foster, Elyse Spears, and Seetha Burtner for bringing in treats for our teachers and staff on October 25. This food was much appreciated by staff on parent-teacher conference day. Thank you to Linda's Donuts for generously sponsoring staff appreciation with a extra half-order of free donuts!

Help rolling drop-off on Gale Rd. be safe and efficient (use map below for reference):

  • Please drop off on school side of Gale against school fence only, not across the street.
  • Only disembark by the teacher-helper at the top of the school ramp – do not discharge children prior to reaching the teacher.
  • Keep moving your car forward as traffic allows until you reach the teacher helper – do not stop or park your car partway along the drop-off zone
  • Always cross the street in the designated crosswalk – this applies to all familes.

Support the Annual Appeal Drive

The Annual Appeal is still underway! Our funds directly supports our staff and students in robust ways throughout the year. Our suggested donation is $125 per child, but we appreciate your contribution whether it's $1, $10, $100, or any other amount. Our goal is also 100% participation, so if you haven't yet, please join us now.

Give online to the Annual Appeal TODAY!

Online payment option include credit card (fee of 3.5% + $0.45) or e-check ($0.45 fee). You can also donate by check, made payable to "Burbank PTA" and submitted to your child's teacher.

Social-Emotional Learning:
The Open Circle Curriculum at Burbank

Presentation at the next PTA Meeting
November 13, 9:00-10:00 a.m.

The Burbank school uses the excellent Open Circle Curriculum across grades and integrated into the school day, to support our children's Social and Emotional Learning (SEL). Do you ever wonder what it's all about? Come to the Burbank cafeteria on November 13, right after morning drop-off, for a dialog with Tricia Clifford, Burbank principal, and Jeff Forti, Burbank school psychologist to learn more about SEL at Burbank. Get your questions answered and leave with tips on how you can support and extend your child's social and emotional growth across school, at home, and in the community.

Mark Your Calendars!

Wednesday, November 1st

Early release day: school ends at 11:40am, Thursday schedule

Thursday, November 1st & Friday, November 2nd

Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF Collection:
on the blacktop before school

Wednesday, November 8th

Early release day: school ends at 11:40am, Friday schedule

Monday, November 13th

PTA Meeting featuring a Social-Emotional Learning Presentation: in the Burbank Cafeteria from 9:00-10:00 a.m.

Thursday, November 16th

Library Night: book readings in the library starting at 6:30 p.m., followed by milk & cookies in the cafeteria

Saturday, November 18th
(rain date: Sunday, November 19th)

Fall Landscape Clean-Up:
on the Burbank grounds from 1:00-4:00 p.m.

Fall Landscape Clean-Up

Saturday, November 18th, 1:00-4:00 p.m.
Rain date: Sunday, November 19th

Come help us clean up leaves, plant bulbs, and prepare the gardens for winter! It's fun and it promotes a sense of stewardship of our school grounds! Bring a rake labeled with your name!

Click Here to Volunteer

Gardens Update

Garden-Curriculum Integration

Grade 2 classes headed out to the school gardens for the second time this fall, this time to do the work of preparing the gardens for winter.

In the Vegetable Garden students picked the last of the vegetables, then pulled up the plants. They "recycled" the leaves and stems by putting them into the compost. Students helped dig the soil in the garden bed and scattered seeds for a cover crop. They learned that cover crops help add nutrients to the soil and help reduce erosion.


In the Garden Classroom the second graders emptied and investigated the clear-sided planter boxes that have been growing since they were planted (by last year's 2nd graders) in the spring. They found some miniature carrots and beets, and various creatures in the soil!

These hands-on experiences connect with the 2nd grade science curriculum on plant growth, soil, compost, and decomposers. Thank you to all the teachers and parent volunteers who made the activities possible.

Garden Harvest Table

The final harvest from the school gardens will be shared with Burbank families. Look for the Garden Harvest Table on the blacktop Friday at 2:50 pick up time. If you can help set up and man the table, please email Kim Foster or Harriet Wong.

Stay on top of PTA news by joining the Burbank PTA Community on Facebook

It's an easy way to stay up to date on what's happening at Burbank. We can be found by searching for the group name on Facebook or clicking below. Hope to see you there!

PTA Volunteers Needed

If you can commit to take on a leadership role this year, the following committees are in urgent need of motivated people.

Burbank Walks

We are still looking for one co-chair to help promote walking/biking to school. The co-chairs will organize Walk to School Days (February & May); organize “walking school buses”; and promote pedestrian and bike safety. The fall walking programs are already underway, so new volunteers will work with current co-chairs to get walking/biking programs in place for spring.

Garden Classroom

We need at least one more co-chair to help maintain the beautiful Garden Classroom. This position involves managing the maintenance and development of the garden, as well as coordinating volunteer efforts in the garden, and collaborating with the Landscape, Veggie Garden, and Garden Curriculum co-chairs.

Green Team

Two co-chairs needed to re-establish the Burbank Green Team. These volunteers will work with the Green Team volunteers from the other Belmont schools and the community to promote environmentally-friendly initiatives.

If any of these roles interests you, please email Katherine or Seetha. The PTA is a completely volunteer run organization, and the positive impact felt by students, teachers, and our community is immeasurable. Thank you for giving of your time and talents!

Community Postings

Volunteer at the FBE Spelling Bee

The FBE Spelling Bee is right around the corner. It takes many many volunteers to run an event of this scale. Please join us! Volunteer! Many roles and shifts are available throughout the day. Go to to sign up!

High School Building Committee
Community Engagement Meetings

Visit the Belmont High School Building Project website for information about the project, and attend any of the following in their series of community meetings about the new high school:

  • Wednesday, November 15th - 7:30 pm – Town Hall
  • Tuesday, December 12th - 7:00 pm - Belmont High School

To sign up for email updates and to learn more about the Belmont High School Building Project, including project timelines, videos, meeting schedules, presentations, and more, please visit Questions?

Junior League's Designer Show House
October 7th to November 5th
1853 William Flagg Homer House in Belmont, MA

The home is currently owned by the Belmont Woman's Club and was previously owned by William Flagg Homer, uncle of the painter Winslow Homer. The house has beautiful views of the Boston skyline and more than twenty soon-to-be renovated spaces by interior designers from all over the area - it will be a fantastic experience for anyone interested in interior design, architecture, and historic homes.

Individual tickets to the Show House are available for purchase for $35-40, discounted rates are available to groups of 10 or more (groups of 10-19 are $33/person and groups of 20+ are $30/person). All tours are self-guided and no reservations are needed beyond tickets - groups and individuals alike are welcome at any time during the Show House’s open hours. More information about the Show House can be found here, and tickets can be purchased here.

Burbank Elementary School PTA

266 School Street
Belmont MA 02478

PTA Co-Presidents

Katherine Poulin-Kerstien

Seetha Burtner

PTA Website

Support the PTA

PTA Calendar

Burbank Weather Station 


posted: October 31, 2017 by webmaster
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