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Autumn 2009: Executive Director Update

October 25 2009

  • Harvest Festival Update!
  • Harvest Festival Coordinators
  • HFA Open House Follow-Up
  • Moving beyond to ….Kindergarten!
  • Kindergarten at BBL …Update!
  • Kindergarten Recommendation Process
  • Daylight Savings Time
  • Dates to Remember

Harvest Festival Update!

On behalf of the BBL team, we want to thank you once again for a fabulous Harvest Festival event!  How beautiful it was for me to see the book Brown Bear Brown Bear bring his character friends to an engaging puppet show in the Purple Cocoon Room.  In the Red Caterpillar Room, the book Goodnight Gorilla came to life with the sounds of African Drums with Ms. Leslie from Music Together.  In the Blue Butterfly Room, the animals from the book A Good Day, brought us a friend who showed us live snakes, lizards, and a friendly Chinchilla to pet.  In the Green Butterfly Room, we saw the pages of Jenny’s book displayed in the smartboard and re-created around the room.  But wait, Jenny’s hat and her dazzling bonnet was certainly to be admired as it was made of individual rolled paper into flowers.

Yes--it was a beautiful day during our 8th annual BBL Harvest Festival!

Harvest Festival Coordinators:

As some of you may know, the Harvest Festival comes together through the efforts of a planning committee.  The planning committee consists of a Lead teacher from the North and the South.  This year’s coordinators were Ms. Jean from the North and Ms. Josephine from the South.  They worked closely with Ms. Dorothy and our Parent Links to define the theme, design tickets, obtain prizes, inform the community, and collect the materials that have made the 2009-2010 Harvest Festival such a memorable event. As special thanks to the planning committee for all their hard work!

This year we raised a total of $1,870.00.  As you remember last year, the teachers where able to obtain ipods to consolidated many of their wonderful CD’s and extend their lifespan in the classroom.   The organization chosen to support last year was named Choosing Project Home under the Women Rising Organization

This year, we have received some family suggestions of organization to support.  We will be meeting with the Lead Teachers to finalize the recipient for this year’s event and will communicate the information to all the families.  Again, thank you for your support.

HFA Open House Follow-Up:

The Hoboken Family Alliance sponsored the School Open House where families had the opportunity to go to various booths and obtain information on the schools’ enrollment process for the school year 2010-2011.  As part of my Beyond initiatives to help families obtain clarity on the enrollment process, I will be scheduling a time for us to meet and talk about the various choices available. I will be scheduling an information session on Wednesday, November 11,  from 3:30 to 5:00 pm at the North Location, Green Butterfly Room.

Moving beyond to ….Kindergarten!

Yes, I have been known to get up at 5:00 a.m. to speak to the International School of India for a BBL child or to contact schools in North Carolina for a family moving to Chapel Hill.  This is all part of my initiative to provide you with a wholistic experience at BBL.  Many families do not realize the extensive work that we do on behalf of your child as you embark on the world of applications, open house, and essay writings.

As part of my Beyond Basic initiatives in helping families demystify the enrollment process for kindergarten and beyond, I will be meeting with the Green Butterfly families in a round table discussion.  We were excited to be able to invite parents that had undergone this experience. We will also be discussing the BBL Kindergarten initiative.

The discussions covered after-school care, the initial visit, as well as other day-to-day routines of the children attending these schools. If you would like for me to reach out to the schools and make the initial connection, please let me know through email (

Kindergarten at BBL …Update!

In past years, families have inquired about a Kindergarten class at BBL. This has been a great opportunity for families that are not ready to commit to an ongoing school right away but continue to want offer their child a rich, stimulating environment.  Often times, schools receive an overwhelming amount of applications for pre-school and kindergarten only to find out that there are a smatter of spaces available in the first grade across many of the elementary schools.  

Our aim is to open the program for children who are 5 years old by December 1st.  The goal of the program is to limit enrollment to families whose children have had prior early childhood schooling.  At this time, the plan is to transform the Green Butterfly Room into the Garden.  The curriculum will leverage technology, science, music, and art to provide the child with critical skills needed to emerge in a rigorous academic environment.

We are both licensed and certified to carry this program. As for me, my degree and certification will allow me to carry out a full elementary school if the need presents itself.

Kindergarten Recommendation Process:

Please note the process for obtaining recommendation from your teacher and director:

  • Please provide the forms to either Ms. Dorothy or Ms. Marge. They will record it and distribute it to the Lead Teacher or myself.
  • Be mindful that the Lead Teacher completes between three to five letters of recommendation per child and provides a detailed response of the information requested. Try to provide us with your copies as soon as possible.
  • Please advise both the front desk and your Lead Teacher of the scheduled date for your child’s visit. We will call the school to ensure that all the necessary information has been received.
  • All the letters of recommendation are sent using overnight mail with confirmation or are hand delivered by me (Ms. Zuleika).

Daylight Savings Time:

As you know, this weekend we put our clocks back an hour.  What you may not have realized is that our location faces east and children experience the natural movement of the sun everyday through their classroom windows.  However, when the clock is changed in the fall, the afternoon appears dark for many of the children and they may experience anxiety at not being picked-up by mom or dad.  For this, I have some suggestions that will help ease the anxiety and smooth the transition:

  • When picking up your child, spend a little time in the room before you go.
  • Try to avoid doing the errands, grocery shopping, laundry, etc. with your child. Instead, do the errands first and then spend more time with your child.
  • Plan special activities when you get home.  The children may have been used to being taken to the park after school, only to find themselves being rushed home.
  • Send him or her to school with a special picture of you.  Encourage your child to share it with his or her friends.

Remember, the teachers have wonderful suggestions to share with you of the activities you may want to do at home.  Please feel free to ask them or us for suggestions.

Dates to Remember:

  • Kindergarten roundtable on Wednesday, November 11, from 3:30 to 5:00 pm at the North Location, Green Butterfly Room.
  • Kindergarten at BBL on Wednesday, November 11 from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m.

Zuleika J. Fertullien
Executive Director

The only NAEYC accredited school in Hoboken!