TRCS Monthly Newsletter
February 2016

The school year is flying by! We all survived the first big snow storm of the season and some of us may be looking to enjoy some winter games during the break. 

This is also a good time to take stock of how your child has been doing in school so far this year.  We have homework centers and Saturday morning test prep classes, so please make sure your child takes advantage of these to get any help they may need to finish the school year off successfully.  Be sure to check Pupil Path regularly to see that all assignments are up-to-date and attend the next parent-teacher conference, scheduled for April 7th & 8th. 

However you spend the break, enjoy it!
              'Olaf' design by Luc Papineau, 9th grade  

Spotlight on: Queens Las American Lions Club

The Queens Las American Lions Club has been a great supporter of Renaissance.  In the past they have supplied us with backpacks, school supplies, holiday food baskets and most recently, the book cart for our elementary library.

Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organization with more than 1.4 million members in approximately 46,000 clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas around the world.

Many of you have donated books for the 1st-5th grade students and the cart provides a way for the books to travel from classroom to classroom.  We thank the Queens Las Americas Lions Club for their generosity and service to the community.

SOUPer Bowl Update!
Congratulations to Team Panthers (grades K, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12) for racking up the most points in the 2016 SOUPer Bowl Food Drive. We were able to donate a large amount of food (two carloads!) to the food pantry program at Bethany Lutheran Church in Elmhurst (4810 91st Place). Attached  is some information about their program.  See below for a day-by-day play of the SOUPer Bowl Food Drive!

Congratulations also to our lunchroom Super Bowl Winners of great NFL gear: Christopher Carrasco, Gabriela Recalde, Nicholas Richichi and Luc Papineau!
Total Score
Publishing Parties

               Pre K

 The third grade wrote information stories on how to help in the community.
On February 11th and 12th our K-5th grade classes hosted families, friends and staff at their publishing parties.

Fifth grade wrote an essay about an expert topic of their choice. 

The kindergarten class wrote their own books which were based on facts.  They investigated a topic and then wrote and drew original books on such subjects as sharks and elephants.

                                           3rd Grade

Goodbye Emily and Jaspal!
 On Friday we said goodbye to PreK-5 Director of Teaching and Learning, Emily Byrum, and our school nurse, Jaspal Kaur.

Emily Byrum came to Renaissance in 1997 and was hired as a second grade teacher, after having taught at schools in the Bronx and in lower Manhattan.  She rose through grades over the next several years, teaching 3rd, 4th and 5th grades.  A lover of nature and true experiential learning, Emily brought the Nature's Classroom experience to Renaissance in 1998, and was fearless in taking even her youngest students on wonderful trips.  Her expertise in teaching mathematics made her a valuable addition to the middle school in later years, as she was transitioning to more administrative roles.  In 2008 Emily was named the Administrator for Special Education, while teaching math to 7th graders.  She eventually was made the Director of Teaching and Learning for K-6th grades, bringing many of the innovative instructional programs that are being taught now in Cluster One, and was instrumental in finding and hiring many of our wonderful current elementary teachers. In 2014 Emily shepherded our brand-new Universal Pre-Kindergarten program into being, making sure that our UPK classroom is one of the most enviable programs in the city.  Emily has certainly earned a restful, wonderful retirement, and we wish her only the best.

 Jaspal has been with Renaissance for 6 years and has done a wonderful job overseeing the medical needs of our students.  She has demonstrated great skills, always administered with kindness.  Jaspal is leaving to work closer to home, as she is a mom to a young toddler and is now expecting her second child.  We are sorry to see her go, but wish her the best of luck at her new school.

Technology for PreK

PreK teacher Rachel has started a DonorsChoose fundraising campaign to help her raise funds to buy mini iPads for her class.  And right now, any donation you make will be doubled by Donors Choose, so even a $5 donation can add up!  Please check out her page here and help our youngest students get on their way to a great education.

Classroom Updates
 PreK and Kindergarten are always busy with art and yoga. Art/yoga teacher Nicole Pouliot reports:
"Just in time for snow, in PreK we made snowy owl puppets! Now we finally know whose nest has been sitting in our art tree! We learned facts about snowy owlets and enjoyed creating these paper bag puppets. In Kindergarten, we took our puppet engineering skills one step further and created turtle puppets whose heads can retract into their shells! This project was tied to the turtle poses we've been learning in Yoga. I failed at taking photos during Yoga this week as we were so physical, but the students learned the breath of the snake as well as new poses, Cobra & Bridge". 
PreK also studied the characteristics of rural, suburban, and city buildings, identifying different characteristics of buildings and all they require to fully function. We discussed what we know about buildings and what we want to find out about buildings; investigating the sturdiness of the
houses in The Three Little Pigs; performing a dramatic retelling of The Three Little Pigs; Investigation construction sites and workers and other professions that contribute to the engineering of buildings; and looking at different kinds of tools and materials used to make buildings "sturdy"

2nd Grade went to Seussical the Musical at the Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts. The children seemed very excited that the books they read in class were brought to life onstage. The production was a true Broadway experience. They learned how to write a hook for non-fiction books to make sure everyone stops and says, "I want to read this book!" The children worked together to create hooks for the class book about Beavers: Listen! Stop! The beaver is whacking his tail. In math they  are learning about length and learned how to use a ruler measuring in inches and centimeters. They also used a yard and meter stick. In social studies they are focusing on natural resources, conservation, and pollution.
The 7th graders just completed a unit on ideal societies. They studied Taino culture, the 13 British colonies, the short story "Harrison Bergeron", examined the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, and studied the death of Tamir Rice. After looking at these various texts in groups, they created utopian societies from the point of view of seventh graders. The maps which they drew helped us visualize their worlds and the laws and artifacts they constructed helped us see tangibly what they valued in their land. Additionally, students created poems/songs, biographies of people of interest in their societies and real estate brochures. Each group presented to the rest of the class trying to convince them to move to their utopia.

TRCS Sports Desk
HS Boys Basketball  Team finished the season  5W-9L.   
MS Girls  Basketball Team  is currently  7W-2L. (2nd Place)  
HS Girls   Basketball Team is  5W -  1 Loss    

TRCS Sports would  like to introduce Liam " Knightie "  our new mascot  (Picture 1 & 3)  
 For More Info, please visit: 
Check out the MS Lady Knights with their new gym book bags, made possible by the  TRCS community supported fundraising efforts.
PTA News
The PTA was very busy this past month, holding two special presentations on topics of special concern to parents.  One was a presentation on how to better understand Social Media and help your child navigate it safely.  The other was a "Stranger Danger" presentation.  Please see the attachments below in case you were unable to attend either of these meeting. 

We send congratulations to Ana Chen, mother of PreK student Calvin.  She was the winner of our Tiffany Necklace raffle!

The PTA is happy to be able to share important information  with our community, so please let us know if there are other topics of interest that you would like us to present at one of our meetings.  The next scheduled meeting is March 16th.  We hope you can join us!  Have a wonderful mid-winter break!
Social Media Presentation
Stranger Danger 

 Monday-Friday, 2/15-19 -  Mid-Winter Recess, No School
Thursday, 2/25 - PreK-8th Grade Open House, 6PM
Wednesday, 3/9 - CSG Meeting 6PM
Thursday, 3/10 - PreK-8th Grade Open House, 9AM
Wednesday, 3/16 - PTA Meeting, 6:30 PM 


Check out the new link on the Parents page of our website called "Supporting Your Child."  

 This page includes many helpful documents and resources to support your child both academically and emotionally, from experts in the field and our own staff. Currently, there are several documents that will help you help your child, by understanding our discipline code, our commitment to an anti-bullying culture, and by understanding what our communication protocols and our philosophy of student counseling. Here are some additional resources:


NYUL Parents Guide to STEM 


Read the following document for tips on internet safety:

Internet Safety  


Elementary Math: 

Make an investment in children, education and the future of our world.  Safer, better-educated communities are great for business; they improve the quality of life for everyone. Renaissance's hard-working, high-achieving students strive to make that happen and with your help that goal is closer to being a reality:  Please visit our website for more information, and lick on the red DONATE button on the bottom of each page:  Thank you!


The Renaissance Charter School

 Corporate and Foundation Sponsors
Best Buy