Virtual Red Folder
December 6, 2018

Math in Action

by David Kern
I had a chance today to drop into our Third, Fourth, and Fifth Grade classrooms with the purpose of seeing math in action. These photos show a nice progression of skills and problem solving across these grades.

This shot is Third Grade multiplication work. By the end of Third Grade, we want our students to be fluent with their times tables:

This picture is the Fourth Grade trivia problem of the day, and a fun way to use one’s math brain:

These two math pictures are in Fifth Grade. They are now multiplying by fractions and using bar models to arrive at an answer:

Finally, I couldn’t resist taking a picture of Maeve Sutherland, the person who creates the VRF each week. Thank you, Maeve!

Wassail & Winter Community Sing on 12/21

John B’s new take on the Winter Program was such a hit last year, we’re making it our new tradition! First we’ll have a community Wassail at 9:30 am in the Annie H. “What’s a Wassail?” many of you ask; it’s a nice warm drink shared among friends. There will also be breakfasty things to munch on. If you’d like to volunteer to set up or bring food to share, please let PTO know here. At 10:30 am, we invite you to join us for some festive tunes at in the Meetinghouse. Our students and faculty will lead us in shared song, and we hope you’ll bring your singing voices and share in holiday cheer. Students will be dismissed from their classrooms at 12:00 pm.

The Office will start taking parking reservations for less mobile attendees the week before the Community Sing. We’ll see you on December 21!

“To turn, turn, will be our delight…”

Will, a long-time potter, brought his class to the Art room this week to show them how to throw on the pottery wheel! We are working with Will to get a sample of his work for the upcoming faculty art exhibit.

Winter Vacation Care

Sign-ups are open until December 20 for:

Winter BtB Class Catalog Available Now

The next round of classes begins on January 8 and runs for eight weeks. Please make sure to sign up by December 21!

View the catalog here
Sign up for classes here

Parent Coffee for Early Childhood & Kindergarten Families

TOMORROW, December 7, 8:15-9:15 am in the Corson Lobby

Join Teacher Tamika and Counselor Phyllis to hear how PMFS Kindergarten tends to the social-emotional and academic growth of our students in the context of fun, challenge, and community.

Coffee (and tea) and morning snacks are on us.

Family Fun Movie Night Next Week!

Gather all PMFS’ers,
the small and the tall,
for a movie spectacular
sure to enthrall.
Bring pj’s and sleeping bags
and money, too,
for popcorn and brownies
too good to be true.
We’ll start on the dot
at 6 “double 0” clock
with pizza and veggies
and fruit for the lot.
Then at twenty past six,
we’ll get that film rolling.
You can watch, you can craft…
but there will not be bowling.
-Dr. Lember

Join us at 6:00 pm on Friday, Dec. 14 in the Steinbright Gym for Horton Hears a Who!

Wow us with your pajamas (coordinated sets not required), bring a sleeping bag or blanket for family snuggling, and don’t forget a few dollars for popcorn (using our new popcorn machine) and baked treats. Interested in having an easy pizza dinner that night? Send in your pizza order form and money to the Office by Dec. 11.

And, help us make the evening a smashing success by volunteering before, during, or after the event. We also need donations of baked goods to ensure all children get a good sugar high. Please use this link to volunteer and to see more ways you can help.

From Black Holes to Tokyo, Community Members Share their Experiences with Sixth Grade

As part of Varley’s Guest Speakers Program, Sixth Graders listen to about 30 different talks over the course of the year. Speakers are all community members — alumni, teachers, parents, Meeting members, friends — who have an experience to share. Sometimes it’s an expertise, like School Committee member Rob Cope’s four-part talk on Quantum Physics. Sometimes it’s an insight into another country, like this week when parent Jeff Markovitz spoke about his time living in Japan. He shared a few stories, talked about language and customs, and had great slides to show the class. Since Jeff just introduced this fascinating part of the world to them, Sixth Grade is thinking about visiting the Japanese Tea House in the Art Museum.

You’re Invited!

Come see Third Grade’s landscape paintings of PMFS campus on display now at the Woodmere Art Museum. The reception is this Sunday, December 9, 2:00-4:00 pm, with artwork on view through December 16. This exhibition is part of the “Kids Care” program, which will wrap the art as holiday gifts for people with life-threatening illnesses.

Lights. . . Camera. . . SPELLING!

Watch this video to see how ACTIVE spelling can get in Tamika’s classroom! Kindergartners are taught to “tap” out the sounds of a new word when reading or writing. For each letter, kids tap a finger against their thumb and says the letter’s sound out loud. It’s a way for students to break the words down into manageable parts.

Book Drive

Upcoming @PMFS

Thursday, Dec 6
Meeting for Worship, 8:30-9:00 am — Join us!
6th Grade goes to Phila Museum of Art
PTO meeting, 3:00 pm in the Library — Join us!

Friday, Dec 7
Parent Coffee for EC and K families, 8:15-9:15 am in the Corson — Join us!
3rd Grade goes to Fairmount Waterworks
5th Grade potluck and Mexico meeting

Tuesday, December 11
Send in your pizza order form and money for Family Fun Night

Thursday, Dec 13
Meeting for Worship, 8:30-9:00 am — Join us!

Friday, Dec 14
Family Fun Movie Night, 6:00 pm in the Gym

Looking Ahead

Friday, December 21
Wassail and Snacks, 9:30 am, Annie H
Winter Community Sing, 10:30 am, Meetinghouse
Early Dismissal & Winter Break begins, 12:00 pm
Dining Out at California Pizza Kitchen, starting after dismissal

Vacation Care will be open on 12/27, 12/28, 1/3 and 1/4.

Monday, January 7
Financial Aid applications due
School re-opens!

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

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