Students from School of Rock Montclair Tour East Coast to Build Awareness About Exoneration Initiative

BY  |  Wednesday, Jul 31, 2013 2:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

School of Rock Montclair

Nine student musicians representing School of Rock Montclair recently performed concerts at venues in New Jersey, Manhattan, and Washington, DC in support of Exoneration Initiative, a non-profit organization that provides free legal assistance to wrongfully convicted persons.

Stops along the students’ four-day “Rockapocalypse Tour” included shows at The Lincoln Memorial; The Doo-Wop Museum and Fox Park in Wildwood, NJ; and Webster Hall in Manhattan.

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Smurfs 2: A Great Summer Family Film

BY  |  Wednesday, Jul 31, 2013 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Smurfs 2

Looking for a great summer family film? Last week, my kids (ages 3, 7 and 9) and I saw an advance screening of Smurfs 2, a family comedy that was a big hit with all three, and as far as kids films go, enjoyable for me, too.  We were lucky to get to view the movie at the Sony Pictures Screening Room  (550 Madison Avenue, 7th Floor) in Manhattan, where I highly recommend seeing a film if you get the chance—oversized comfy seats, plenty of leg room and a huge screen.

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Reality Bites

BY  |  Wednesday, Jul 31, 2013 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (1)

willThere are so many things my wife and I need to do before we go on vacation. Planning, packing, Organizing the home, eating the food that would otherwise spoil. Hey, it’s a tough job but somebody’s gotta do it. It’s a lot of work in addition to our full-time jobs. Nice problem to have, I admit. But this time around we have to do even more than normal because we’re not bringing our daughter. We’re fulfilling a promise we made to each other on our honeymoon and going back to Venice to celebrate our tenth anniversary. (Making our way to Paris as well.)

It’s a dream vacation. Once in a lifetime. But before we live that dream, we need to consider a worst possible nightmare. Before we check out of reality, we are faced with a sobering reality check. We realized we needed to update our will. Because God forbid if something happens to the both of us.

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Goodbye StarPortal: Montclair is Moving Grades Skyward

BY  |  Wednesday, Jul 31, 2013 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (14)

SkywardAs the new school year approaches, students won’t be the only ones showing off their new upgrades. The Montclair School district is mobilizing this summer to bring students and families a new and more comprehensive student data system called Skyward in which they will not only access grades online, but manage assignments, view sports schedules, change emergency contact information, and much more.

Skyward Family Access will be fully operational in September and will replace StarPortal. Students and their parents can continue to track their grades and attendance with Skyward, but its additional features will provide more convenience. The one I’m most excited about? When an assignment or test appears in the grade log and a grade has not yet been entered, a zero will not automatically be factored into the marking period average. (That will save me a lot of stress!) In addition, Skyward has a section in which students can view their current, past and missed assignments that teachers will keep updated daily, acting as a virtual assignment pad. A calendar will also show upcoming tests and major assignment due dates. To aid disorganized families in keeping track of significant writing assignments and projects, a portfolio feature enables users to save digital files of their work in their account for future use.

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Watchung School Announces Kindergarten Playdates and Ice Cream Social

BY  |  Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013 2:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Watchung School Watchung School in Montclair will host three informal playdates and an ice cream social for incoming Watchung kindergartners this summer.

The playdates will be held:

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Family Scrabble Night at Watchung Booksellers Tomorrow

BY  |  Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Family Scrabble Night

Bring your Scrabble boards over to Watchung Booksellers in Montclair and play with words at the Family Scrabble Night. The bookstore has been hosting Scrabble nights for all ages this month.

Families will enjoy some “Scrabble” snacks, do a “scrabble” craft or two, “letter” stories for the little ones and more in the celebration of words!

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Giveaway: Tween and Teen Books to Take the Edge Off of Mid-Summer

BY  |  Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (4)

EJ_preview_cover1WINNER: Congratulations to katvanwin!

We’re heading into August, and that means there is still half of the summer to enjoy! For families with tweens and young teens who have lost the adrenalin rush of camp and free time and town pools and sunshine, we have some books that may just help take the edge off the mid-summer ennui.

A teenager writing in her journal about a summer away from home is nothing new, but Eliza’s Journal, a story of a girl and her first summer job on a lush island far from home, has twists and turns that will surprise even the most jaded teen or tween. With hints of The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew, the tale adds just a dash of science fiction. Eliza’s Journal, by author Caelyn AB Williams, breaks the mold that “coming-of-age” stories have led us to expect.

This fun, informative book will appeal to tweens and young teens who enjoy the casual structure of journal writing. It has appeal for mystery-loving readers as well as those who enjoy light science-fiction. Because of the novel’s strong protagonist and supporting characters, I am confident that both girls and boys can relate to the story, especially those who grew up with the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books. There is some low-level cursing (damn), and there is some very mild physical intimacy (kissing).

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Hello Flo Tampon Subscription Service and Best Period Ad Ever

BY  |  Tuesday, Jul 30, 2013 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (5)

Hello FloLadies, imagine a package delivered to your doorstep every month, with just the right amount of tampons and pads needed for your period—you choose your plan from “low flo to heavy flo($14 – $18 per month)—plus some candy to satisfy those cravings. No more last minute runs to CVS for more tampons, no sending your husband to get pads. Hello Flo, a new tampon and pad subscription service can do all that.

Hello Flo, describes itself as “Tampon delivery. Period Simplicity,” and was created by a woman, Naama Bloom, who explains why she started Hello Flo on the website:

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Montclair Chief Academic Officer and Teachers Report on Summer’s Curriculum and Assessment Development

BY  |  Monday, Jul 29, 2013 1:32pm  |  COMMENTS (1)

Curriculum and Assessment DevelopmentMontclair’s Chief Academic Officer Gail Clarke (former principal of Nishuane Elementary School) gave a report at the July 15 BOE meeting on this summer’s work to develop curriculum aligned with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) as well as to develop common quarterly assessments. The district has sent the following detailed press release about the progress of the development:

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The New York Renaissance Faire Offers Fun For Lords and Ladies of All Ages

BY  |  Monday, Jul 29, 2013 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (1)

 New York Renaissance FaireThe New York Renaissance Faire will offer adventure and fantasy for lords and ladies of all ages beginning this weekend.

The Faire is a rollicking romp through Elizabethan England complete with 16th Century games, rides, arts, crafts, food music and dance. You’ll enjoy jousts, magic shows, theatre, Maypole dances and much more merriment.

So go join the fun at the New York Renaissance Faire! Step right into the fantasy and go dressed in your best Renaissance costume!

And next weekend only, August 10 and 11, all children under the age of 12 are welcomed to the Faire free of charge!

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