Neary news: Candy for troops, card-a-thon for sick kids, logo contest, anti-bullying, and baking for pantries


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Local teens Matt and Jennifer Franks with some of the students (Sarah Boush, Hannah Dence, and Meghan DeGregorio) who contributed to their card-a-thon drive for sick kids. (Contributed photo)

Above: Click to advance images related to all the goings-on at Margaret A. Neary School this fall.

The students and staff at Neary School are keeping very busy this fall. Too busy for me to keep up with them.

Card-a-Thon for sick children

Algonquin students, Matthew and Jessica Franks of  Southborough asked local students to take part in their St. Jude Children’s Hospital Card-A-Thon. Neary students hand drew 157 cards for the drive.

The siblings hoped to send 500 handmade cards to St. Jude’s by today. But with 567 collected as of Wednesday, the teens told me they have extended the deadline to November 15 with a new goal of 750.

You can read more about their efforts and how to contribute here.

Contest for new logo

The school held an art contest for a new rendering of the school’s logo – the Neary Wizard. Art teacher Denise Johnson shared with me that the previous logo was drawn by a Neary student now in his late twenties!

Over 150 students submitted entries. The judging committee included the principal, superintendent and assistant superintendent, all three K-8 art teachers, and the school’s DARE Officer Kevin Landry.

The winning design was drawn by 4th grader Charlotte Richmond. Neary Principal Karen Valenti told Southborough Wicked Local:

“I was looking for an image that was welcoming and demonstrates us as a team,” Valenti said. “What I like about Charlotte’s is that it’s warm and friendly.”

To read the SWL article with photo (including color version of the design), click here.

Anti-Bullying movement

This month, the school asked Neary students to stand up to bullying. The school joined a national movement promoting October as Anti-Bullying Awareness month. The movement’s color is orange, which students were encouraged to wear each Friday and on “Unity Day” last week. (If you’d like to learn more about the national campaign, click here.)

Candy for the Troops

 Neary is continuing its tradition of collecting candy for U.S. Troops. Next week, the school will ask students to contribute their extra Halloween candy to ship to service members. Included with the candy will be a message from the school with a patriotic photo of Neary students on the hill. (On alternating years, students pose in the shape of the flag or U-S-A. Click here to see enlarged version of this year’s pic with visible faces.)

Once the candy is collected and organized for mailing, parent volunteers generously ship boxes overseas on behalf of the school. Teacher David Stubbart tells me that they usually collect over 60 boxes.

He also shared that the drive originated 15 years ago under 5th grade teacher Jen Turieo. “It has evolved from giving to families in need…to for the last 12 years going to the troops. Over the years we have gotten back some really nice letters, photos, and even a flag that have flown at bases abroad.”

Bake for Good: Learn, Bake and Share

Neary Students are again taking part in an education program by King Arthur Flour. On Thursday, students will learn how to bake bread. They will then be sent home with materials. They will be encouraged to make two loaves: one for their family and another to donate to a local food pantry. (Sounds like that’s just in time for Scouting for Food.)

Susan shared photos from the program in 2010. Click here to see that story.

Vocabulary Hat parade

This week, students are also hard at work on their designs for the annual Vocabulary Hat parade. You can see some 2010 examples here.

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