Virtual Red Folder
April 19, 2018

Ankh! Udja! Seneb!*

Who are these people?  To find out, check your Red Folders …. And learn more about them at The Serpent and The Sailor and The Stars in The Sky, presented by our 6th Grade on Friday May, 4 and Saturday, May 5, 7:00 pm.

The 6th Grade class is hard at work, getting ready to put on this full scale musical for you. The musical is appropriate for ALL AGES, so we invite your whole family to enjoy the show!

Get your tickets now:

  • Use this order form to pay with cash or check via the Main Office
  • Go online to to pay with a credit card (Psst: When you use this option, a portion of Brown Paper Tickets profits is given back to communities. You can help decide where the money from this sale goes by choosing a recipient category.)

Ticket Prices:

  • 6th Grade and under = $5 cash or check; $6.17 online
  • 7th Grade and up = $10 cash or check; $11.34 online

*(pronounced Ahnk! Wedja! Seneb!) A traditional Ancient Egyptian greeting meaning ‘Life! Prosperity! Health!,’ often in reference to the pharaoh

This Week’s Strawberry Festival Checklist

Have you:

  • Marked your calendar? (Saturday, June 2!)
  • Done a “sun and warmth” dance? (Snow this week, really?)
  • Reviewed the Sponsorship Form sent home last week? (A tax deduction for you or your business, a monetary donation offsets many of the festival costs, making the festival more profitable for the PTO and PMFS! A small marketing expense to advertise your business or service to the PMFS and greater community.)  We hope to hear back from you by May 1!
  • Started thinking about the star-of-the-show Strawberry Shortcake? Use the Strawberry Festival T-shirt and Cake Form to pre-order your slice of cake now! Sent home before the festival, cake tickets can be shared with your friends and family (due May 14).
  • Pulled out spring t-shirts yet? We love the tradition that a 4th grader designs the Festival t-shirt each year and that it is revealed only on the morning of the festival. Pre-order yours today with the Strawberry Festival T-shirt and Cake Form, as there are limited quantities available at the festival (forms due May 14).

Celebrating the Arts

Sincere thanks to Gillian Pokalo, Marcus Myers, and John B Hedges, not only for their many hours of preparation for last Saturday’s ArtsFest but also for their spirit, inspiration, and skill in teaching our students more than just process; students demonstrated that they know how to how to use processes in creative and innovative ways. From individual comments below artwork where students answered “What I want you to notice about my art?” to students wanting to learn “Fly, Eagles, Fly” on their violins, we were witness to students’ learning the importance of their voice. And it was a lot of fun too!

Invention Convention

This spring our Third Graders studied inventors and their inventions, the scientific process, and design thinking. The Invention Convention is the culmination of this exploration. Students design, test, and present an original invention or prototype that meets a need they have noticed on the playground or in their active play. This year’s inventions included special padded gloves to protect your hands while using the monkey bars, and a clear dome to sheid the center of the gaga pit from the elements. This year, PMFS hosted this gathering of young inventors, as they welcomed the third grade classes from Abington Friends and Penn Charter!

Grandparents and Special Friends Day- TOMORROW Friday, April 20

We are excited to welcome grandparents and special friends tomorrow morning! (We will have a full day of school, with students returning to their classrooms at the conclusion of the event.)

8:30-9 am Registration and Coffee, Welcome and Brief Presentation
Steinbright Building on the Lower Campus

9:00 am Classroom Visits
Visitors who are visiting more than one child will be prompted to change classrooms at 9:45 am.

10:30 am Morning Recess

Kindergarten – Sixth Grandparents/Special Friends:  10:45 am Meeting for Worship; program concludes at 11:15 am
Early Childhood Grandparents/Special Friends: Program concludes at end of recess at 11:00 am
All children will return to their classrooms with their teachers unless parents have made prior arrangements with the school.

Nature Play! Loose Parts! Outdoor Kitchen!

Our wish: Kids who play and explore and create and take full advantage of the great outdoor spaces at PMFS
Our hope: Regular replenishing of materials to enhance that play (we play hard)
Our request: If each family could give even one item, we could greatly grow our supply!
What are we looking for? Click here for some ideas for Nature Play items (oh, you yard salers: keep it in your pocket when you are out and about).

We and the squirrels and the children thank you!

Turn Off the Screens, Turn On Life!

During the week of April 30-May 6, 2018, families across America will be accepting the challenge to unplug their screens and rediscover other ways to play and learn. This is a great time for kids and parents to practice a game, try a new book, make a project, or just hang out together. Why is this important? Too much “screen time” can lead to health problems and poor performance in school, not to mention all that exposure to commercial content. Most of all, it takes away from opportunities for kids to interact with the world in a meaningful way. PMFS encourages all families to consider how much time their children spend watching TV or using the computer and what other entertaining activities they might do instead. Here are 101 great screen-free ideas. Please join us!

Join other PMFS families for a meal out at the Trolley Car Diner & Cafe during Screen Free Week! Enjoy a meal from Monday, April 30 through Sunday, May 6 and the Trolley Car will donate 20% of your food bill to PMFS! Don’t forget the attached coupon (paper coupons will also be sent home in Red Folders).

May Parent Coffee

Come learn about short and long-term learnings from The Mexican Exchange Program.

Friday, May 4, 8:15-9:15 am
5th Grade Classroom
All are welcome


At Meeting for Worship today, Second Graders asked the rest of the school to consider:
If you were to write a letter to a child in a refugee camp, what would you say? Why?

Parent Interest: Talking to Kids about Consent

Click here for more information on this 2-hour event sponsored by the Haverford Area Community Action Network on April 28.

Rock on, scientists! It’s sedimentary, dear Watson! The Solution is in Upper Grade Science!

Sixth Grade is learning about physical and chemical reactions, so this week we did both!  We chopped purple cabbage into tiny pieces and soaked it in boiling water. Both of these are physical reactions “” the cabbage was still cabbage (though minced) and the water was still water (though very hot). After we strained out the cabbage, the result was a lovely indigo liquid. With that, we began to discover the marvelous chemical powers of purple cabbage juice: its pigment is an indicator that changes color when mixed with other liquids to tell us its pH! We also used regular pH strips tell us where on the pH scale to place each color.

By the end of class we had a chemical rainbow. Vinegar turned the indicator juice a vivid pink and was the most acidic material we tested (pH of 3). Pickle relish and hot sauce turned the indicator pinkish purple, which meant they were a bit less acidic. The cabbage juice by itself was a neutral 7 pH. When we tested Alka Seltzer, a baking soda solution, and desk cleaner, we found they were basic, with pH’s of 8, 9 and 10. The more basic they were, the more turquoise blue the color of the indicator! Students were amazed; before we began, the class was certain the cabbage would not be very reliable. However, they decided that cabbage indicator and pH strips were very similar in their abilities.

Fifth Grade set out to answer the question of how loose sediment like sand can become a rock, and how that rock can keep changing. We began with four types (colors) of Starburst “rocks.” Students “eroded” their rocks by cutting them into small pieces. These little piles of rock were then “deposited by wind and water” into one pile, and then a “dune” of this mixed sediment was given to each group. When asked how they could change this dune into rock, students mashed and pressed until they had a clump of pebbly “rock.”  Voilà “” sedimentary rock, like sandstone. We had already examined sandstone in a previous class, and Fifth Graders noted how they could still feel the grittiness of the sand.

The next challenge was how to make their rock metamorphose “” they pressed even more, flattening and even folding their rock, noticing that the colors blended more like gneiss. Looking at real gneiss, they saw that it was no longer lumpy or gritty and had spots and strips of blending colors. For the final step, we put our “rock” into a pan on a hot plate and heated it. Students remembered how in real life tectonic plates can be pushed back into the mantle, and one student noted that real rock might melt pretty fast at the temperatures deeper in the mantle. By the end of class, students were noticing that “magma” was forming in the pan. After the “rock” melted and bubbled, it was placed in the freezer (imagining that it had erupted from a volcano in Alaska). Our final, igneous rock had totally blended, and changed color, to a swirly reddish-brown. Of course, we also tested how the taste changed along with the texture as our rock went through its cycle….

“”Kathleen, Science 4-6

Upcoming @PMFS

Friday, April 20 (Full Day of School)
Grandparents and Special Friends Day (Rescheduled), 8:30 – 11:15 am

Monday, April 23
5th Grade Parents Meeting: Mexico Evaluation & 7th Grade Prep
PTO Officer Nominations Due (via email to Ralph or note to the Main Office)

Tuesday, April 24
4th Grade departs for Washington D.C.
Kindergarten goes to the Franklin Institute

Wednesday, April 25
3rd Grade departs for Wallops Island, Virginia
Open Library, 3:15 – 4:15 pm

Thursday, April 26
Meeting for Worship, 8:30 – 9:00 am
2nd Grade leaves for Camping Trip

Friday, April 27
2nd, 3rd, and 4th Grades Return (!)

Coming Soon!

Thursday, May 3
3 – 4:30 pm
 Come Play: Playground Playdate (Invite your friends)

Want more info on happenings at school? 
Go to, where you can subscribe to the PMFS Public Calendar.

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