March 22, 2019

Autumn Carlson-Weagle, Pre-K, admires the four-leaf clover plant brought in by Mrs. Ketter who visited class to speak about her Irish heritage.

During the 2018-19 school year we will observe two Hallmarks: 
Hallmark 4 - We commit ourselves to community service.
Hallmark 6 - We create community among those with whom we work and with those we serve.

Contents below include:



All School

Dear Academy Community,

This week the administrative team kicked off the first day of spring with a very productive planning session. Our objective was to come up with a concise list of goals to address, starting this spring and continuing into the 2019-2020 school year. The areas of focus included the academic program, professional development, enrollment management, technology, and facilities. We are excited to share more details on our list of goals with the entire NDA community in the coming weeks.

God bless,

Nashua Chamber Members Warmly Welcomed at Event

From Brenda Simblaris, Admissions and Marketing Coordinator:
Approximately 70 guests from both the Greater Nashua Chamber of Commerce (GNCC) and the Academy community were welcomed into our parlors for an evening of networking and fun on March 13th. The goal of this event was to forge future collaborations with local businesses, showcase the benefits of being “NDA Prepared,” and to leverage our GNCC membership to strengthen our community connections.

In co-sponsorship with Nashua caterer “Celebrations” and Amy Strike, an array of delicious hors d’oeuvres were served as guests mingled throughout the parlors. The evening consisted of continuous tours throughout the building provided by NDA Administrators and faculty. Guests were provided with facts about the Academy which would later prove advantageous for 8th grade students Annalise Stangroom (Grade 8) and Anna Makhnovsky (Grade 7) and their GNCC team members as they played the game, “Are you Smarter than a NDA Middle Schooler?” hosted by our own John O’Brien. The evening was rounded out with a phenomenal preview of Oliver! performed by cast members and directed by Mr. Stephen Flynn.

Tracy Hall, President of the GNCC, made the opening remarks followed by John O’Brien who spoke about the Academy and touted the benefits of an NDA education.  Also on hand, was Chamber Ambassador, Chair of the GNCC Board of Directors, and Rivier University's Dean of the Business Division, Dr. Amir Toosi. Many thanks to all who contributed to making this event a success!

FoNDA Thanks All for Fun Trivia Night

The Friends of NDA (FoNDA) extends a warm thank you to all those who contributed to and participated in the 2019 "Face the Music" Trivia Night held on March 9th. A great turnout made for much fun and laughs and many lucky winners went home with beautiful raffle baskets.

Chipotle...It's What's for Dinner on Monday, March 25th

From Lauren Fish, Guidance Counselor:
Does the Monday night dinner struggle sound familiar? Have no fear, Chipotle is here! On Monday, March 25th from 4 to 8 p.m. the freshman class will be having a fundraiser at the Chipotle in Nashua (off of Daniel Webster Highway) to raise funds for end-of-year activities. We'd love to have you join us and help us meet our goal! Please know that your support would be very much appreciated. Don't forget to mention that you're part of the fundraiser at check out!  Hope to see you there!

Registration is Open for Golf Event Honoring Eric Hanson

From Kristen Stella, Institutional Advancement Coordinator:
Join us on Monday, May 13th at Vesper Country Club for the 27th Annual Academy of Notre Dame Golf Tournament. This year's event will be held in memory of past member of the NDA Board of Directors, Eric Hanson. Whether you play under par or spend most of your time in the rough, golfing for a good cause is always fun! All proceeds from the tournament benefit tuition assistance and the Academy's areas of greatest need. Click the button below for more information and to register.  We look forward to seeing you on the course!

More Info and Registration

Newsletter Dates Alter in April

From Cindy Boynton, Director of Marketing and Communications:
Please note that the publication dates for April will be altered due to school break. As indicated below, it will be published on the first and last Fridays of the month, April 5th and April 26th, before returning to an every-other-week schedule for the remainder of the year.

From the Editor:

The Bi-Weekly Newsletter is produced by the Communications and Marketing Department. Submissions should be emailed to Cindy Boynton at no later than noon on the Wednesday prior to the Friday publication date. All articles should include vital information, be kept brief and include photos whenever possible. Here is the schedule for the year:

Newsletter Dates and Deadlines 2018-2019

Article Deadlines

Noon, Wednesday, April 3
Noon, Wednesday, April 24
Noon, Wednesday, May 8
Noon, Wednesday, May 22
Noon, Wednesday, June 5

Newsletter Publish Date

Friday, April 5
Friday, April 26
Friday, May 10
Friday, May 24
Friday, June 7

Upper School

School Spirit on Display During Spirit Week

From Marketing Student Carrie Sun:
Spirit Week 2019 was held this week for students and staff to show their school spirit and fun loving attitude. Spirit points were awarded for participation in each day's dress down theme. Each grade reported to their homeroom to have their outfit checked for qualification. Deductions were made for every student in the grade that was NOT dressed in the daily theme. The themes were:

  • Monday - TV Show Day
  • Tuesday - Man Day
  • Wednesday - Meme Day
  • Thursday - USA Day
  • Friday - School Spirit Day
Participation in spirit activities contributed towards spirit points as well. Fun lunch time activities included teacher trivia on Tuesday and karaoke on Wednesday. Sticking with tradition, the week concluded with the annual Talent Show which featured acts performed by both students and faculty finale called, "Are You Smarter than an NDA Teacher?"

Spirit Points (as of 3/21/19)
1st Place
2nd Place
3rd Place
4th Place


50 points
38 points
36 points
26 points

NHS Raises Money with Penny Wars During Spirit Week

During Spirit Week, the National Honor Society (NHS) held its annual Penny Wars to encourage the community to get excited about giving back. The healthy competition encourages students to donate to two important scholarships: Rachel Morrison '05 Memorial Scholarship and the Susan Scanlon Bradley Memorial Scholarship. This year the total amount raised was $525.21 which will be evenly divided between the two scholarship funds. On behalf of the Morrison and Bradley families, and all of us at the Academy, thank you for coming together in support of these wonderful memorial scholarships! 

Rachel Morrison '05 Memorial Scholarship

Rachel Morrison graduated from the Academy's Upper School in 2005. According to her dad, she was an "academic rockstar" and an accomplished athlete. She was pursuing a PhD in Marine Biology at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in California when she was struck and killed by a drunk driver while on a run. The scholarship in her memory supports graduating seniors with their college tuition. Each fall, her family and the Academy host Rachel's Run on campus to raise money for the scholarship.

Susan Scanlon Bradley Memorial Scholarship
Susan Bradley was the mother of three NDA graduates and a dedicated school volunteer. While she lost her courageous battle with cancer, her memory lives on through her children and the Susan Scanlon Bradley Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship supports students entering the Academy's Upper School. On Sunday, April 28, Sue's family will host the 5th Annual Susan Bradley Memorial Walk-a-thon at the NDA Track to raise funds for the scholarship.

1st Place-Juniors
2nd Place-Freshmen
3rd Place-Seniors
4th Place-Sophomores

10887 points
4644 points
2584 points
220 points


Strong Showing by NDA MUN Delegates at Meets

By Marketing Student Jasmin Sabah:
The Academy's Model UN (MUN) team competed in two meets in recent weeks and garnered a number of recognitions honoring their peace keeping skills. On March 16th the NDA delegates took part in the Boston College High School Model United Nations XXVII Simulation. Students debated and negotiated possible solutions to some of the world's most pressing problems. Special commendation went to three students who won the Best Delegate award in their committee: Ciara Wang won as Admiral William D. Leahy during the 1948-49 Berlin Blockade, Christina Tsillas won representing China in the UN Security Council, and Elena Murguia won as Ring Lardner Jr. in a historical HUAC committee debating the Hollywood Blacklist in the 1940s and 50s. NDA also took home two awards for Best Position Paper: Lana Sukkar on the Boston Marathon Bombing and Liya Mooradain on the Iran-Iraq War. 

Earlier on March 9th, the delegation participated in the MinuteMUN conference on the Campus of UMASS Amherst. Students debated, negotiated, compromised and wrote resolutions to resolve issues ranging from solving economic development in Africa to the peaceful uses of outer space.

Two Outstanding Delegate awards were earned by Christina, who attempted to win the war against drug cartels in Columbia, and Elena dealt with the Indian Independence movement against Great Britain. A special commendation was given to Erin Doughty who was chosen by fellow delegates as "most improved," noting that this was her first conference. Congratulations to all the Academy’s delegates for a job well done!

Grace Cai, Jecolener He, Cherry Jin, Bri Lavelle, Martina Maximovich, Liya Mooradian, Elena Murguia, Jasmine Sabah, Lana Sukkar, Christina Tsillas, Joy Tu, Ciara Wang, Aurelia Yan, Kathy Xie, Meghan Pefine, Angela Tarantino, Jackie DeNisco, Christina Tsillas, Selena Li, Ada Zhang, Shelly Yang, Annie Zhang, Erin Kunze, Ailis Peterson, and Erin Doughty.

2013 Graduate Schools Students on Solidarity

From Marketing Student Linsey Former:
Maggie Rossano '13 returned to campus on March 12th to speak to theology classes about her experiences with service learning and solidarity. Maggie, who is Mrs. Rossano's daughter, earned a master's in public health from St. Louis University and will attend medical school in the fall. During her undergraduate work at St. Louis, Maggie was able to spend time volunteering in the local community where she learned the importance of being in solidarity with the people she was serving. Her experience in St. Louis inspired her to go to the Philippines on a service learning trip where she worked to assist with a nutrition program. Her time there proved to be challenging, in fact, it shattered her preconceptions of how she would affect change and forced her to confront her own privilege. Slowly she was able to turn her uncomfortable moments into opportunities to forge relationships and came to find solidarity with the people she was there to serve. Maggie encouraged students to seek their own opportunities for service learning and to examine their own privilege while learning to serve in solidarity with others.

Toothpick Geometry and Engineering for Sophomores

From John Versteeg, Math and Science Teacher:
The sophomore geometry classes recently worked on a project where they used toothpicks to construct model buildings. Then they went to the Makerspace and used the software program, Tinkercad, to turn their 3-D toothpick projects into 3-D CAD designs which were then printed in plastic on the 3-D printer. The students had fun, and Ms. Holder and Mr. Versteeg were very pleased with the results.

Cast and Crew of "Annie" Ready for the Audience

New York during the depression of the 1930s is the setting for the Drama Guild's rendition of Annie, the story of a tenacious little orphan girl who wins the hearts of all she meets. The fun, classic musical is sure to bring a smile to the face of everyone who attends as the NDA thespians take to the stage. Work on the production started in January and Ms. Marrello, director, is pleased with the effort all students have put forth. “We have a large cast and crew that has been working so well together. Even when we all come in on Saturdays to do set work, the students don’t complain."

The performance dates for Annie are Friday and Saturday, April 5th and 6th. Show times are at 7 p.m. as well as a 2 p.m. matinee on Saturday. General admission tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students. Click the button below to purchase your ticket online.

Purchase Tickets

Emmanuel Students Guide 1804 Society in Retreat

From 1804 Society Co-President and Marketing Student Jasmin Sabah:
The Upper School’s 1804 Society traveled to Emmanuel College for their Retreat on March 14th. The students spent the day reflecting on the core values of a true leader, how women especially are a force of reckoning in leadership, what to pull forward in college, and how to compare and contrast the high school experience with that of the college experience. They received amazing insights to the world of university, explored the aspects that make up the college life and learned how to serve their communities as adults. Emmanuel students facilitated the retreat and assisted the group in the creation of meaningful bracelets and posters highlighting all of the things they hope to improve and all they admire as current young women. The Academy’s 1804 Society had an extremely pensive and exciting time at the retreat!

A Retreat to Remember

From Marketing Student Chloe Liu:
The Class of 2019 held their Senior Retreat on March 13th at Grotonwood Camp & Conference Center in Groton. “The Journey: Reflecting Back & Moving Forward” was the theme of the retreat which was addressed by student speakers. Jackie Denisco reflected on “Where Have We Been,” Katie Curran spoke about “Where Are We Now” and Titiana Tambi offered thoughts on “Moving Forward.” The seniors participated in several activities that had them thinking about their time at NDA, how they've changed over their high school years, and their expectations for the future. To close out the retreat, each student was asked to say something to their classmates. For most, it was the highlight of the day. “I will remember this retreat even after I graduate," said Grace Cai. "The Class of 2019 Retreat is the best memory in my heart.”

Reserve Your Yearbook Ad Now

From John Versteeg, Yearbook Advisor:
Tell your favorite senior or group of seniors how proud you are of them with an ad in their senior yearbook! The Academy yearbook committee is soliciting ads from family members and students to be printed in the back of the yearbook. These personal ads are a great way to send your love! Click the button below for more information on ad rates and sizes. Ad reservations and payments are due by April 12th.

Reservations for a copy of the 2019 yearbook are also being taken now through May 3rd. To reserve your copy, click the button below. Reservations require a $30 deposit; the final price will be set once it is determined how many books will be published. The balance of the cost is due on book pick up day.

Advertising & Book Reservation

Lancer's Hi-Five

The CAC (Commonwealth Athletic Conference) announced that the top six finishers in the league championship meet that was held last month have earned All-Star status. We are pleased to have six athletes earn the honor; 8th Graders Bianca Bostwick and Mya Shanahan, Freshmen Catherine Johnson and Katie Vieira, Sophomore Ishani Patel and Junior Rachel Deshaies.

Upper school spring sports started this past week, and a total of 60 students are participating in Softball, Tennis and Track & Field. Please refer to the Veracross Athletic calendar for a schedule of all the game and meet dates.

Middle School

Sixth Grader Places 8th in Regional Spelling Bee

Congratulations to Ananya Pinnamaneni (Grade 6) on finishing 8th out of 61 contestants in the Regional Scripps Spelling Bee competition held in Lynn on March 13th. 

Ananya's mother, Lavanya Vemullapalle, thanks the school for the opportunity and the community for its support. "It was a great experience for Ananya."

Students Reflect on How to "Walk in Jesus' Footsteps"

From Sr. Jeanne Frechette, Campus Minister and Religion Teacher:
The 7th grade class had the opportunity to participate in a retreat lead by Sister Bernadette Turgeon, SNDdeN, on March 18th. The theme of the retreat was “Following Jesus.” Sr. Bernadette opened the morning of prayer and reflection by asking the students, “What can I do to walk in Jesus’ footsteps?” and “What can I do to make a difference?”

During a five minute reflection time the students were asked to come up with five things they could do that would make a difference in this world. Students then gathered in small groups to discuss the fruits of their thoughts and to create a poster. The students shared that recycling, helping the less fortunate with clothing donations and finding opportunities for service to assist the elderly are actions that they can take to follow Jesus.

After the presentation, Sister spoke about a gentlemen named Gary Armanini who lost a close friend at the age of 17 to bone cancer. All watched a documentary titled “A gift for a Friend.” Gary ran cross country and donated all his money to the Dana Farber Cancer Center.  His love for his friend and faith in God kept him going. After a short discussion the students were invited to create friendship bracelets with the intention to give it away so that they can follow in Jesus’ footsteps by doing to others the way Jesus does.

Lancer's Round-Up

From Nate Froment, Lower School Athletic Director:

Boys and Girls Varsity Basketball:
Both the Boys and Girls Varsity Basketball teams ended their season with a loss in the first round of the playoffs. Both teams are congratulated for working really hard all season long. A special thank you to coaches Daniel Grejdus and John Hamilton for their season-long dedication and hard work!

Boys and Girls JV Basketball:
Congratulations to both the Boys and Girls JV Basketball teams as each team has advanced to the league championship game on Saturday, March 23rd at the UMass Lowell Costello Gym. The Girls JV Championship Game will be played at 3:30 p.m. vs St. Michael School and the Boys JV Championship Game will be played at 4:45 p.m. vs Lowell Community Charter. Congratulations to both teams on a great season and good luck in the championship game!

Spring Sports:
Spring sports practices and tryouts will begin the first week of April. If your child is interested in participating on a spring sports team, please register them at the following sites:

The deadline to register on the league toolbox sites is April 8th. If you have any questions regarding spring sports, contact Nate Froment at

Lower School

Counting Coins, Earning Money and Spending It

From Barbara Beauchesne, Grade 1 Teacher:
Students in 1B have been busy sorting, identifying and counting coins. We are now practicing finding the value of various groups . In order to help them with these skills they have learned a short poem to describe each coin and its value. In class they often work with a classmate to practice counting out a given amount. Each person takes turns counting and checking the amount given. We also have an interchangeable bulletin board covered with groups of coins.

These groups are changed at various times; students are asked to choose a group, identify the coins and add them to find the total. We also use this to compare groups and find those that have the same value using different coins. Students also enjoy participating in a game called “I Have. Who Has?” For the game, students are handed a game card that shows a set of coins on top and a question on the bottom. They need to listen for the amount of money that is called out. If they have that amount they stand up and shout "I have …. Who Has?" and the game continues until all cards have been collected. We also enjoy rotating around the class to different stations to count coins. Each station has a cupcake wrapper filled with coins. Students take time to add the money and record their answers at each station on an answer key.

The students are currently doing their best to earn money that they will be able to spend at the class store. Money is earned by returning homework, doing something nice for someone, and being prepared for class just to name a few. This money will be spent by the students to shop. They will be able to choose from a variety of items including crayons, rulers, erasers, jump ropes, bubbles and much more. The children will don an apron and spend time working behind the counter being the storekeeper while the others take time to make their purchases.

Springtime in Paris for Father/Special Person Dance

You’re Invited to Springtime in Paris where girls in grades K2 through 8 and their special guest will enjoy a dinner buffet, dancing and lots of fun! The NDA Father/Special Person - Daughter Dance will be held Saturday, April 27th from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Westford Regency Inn and Conference Center, 219 Littleton Road, Westford. The cost is $25 per person. Click the button below to download the reservation form. Please RSVP early and make checks payable to the Parents’ Club.  Forms and payment must be returned to school in an envelope marked “Parents’ Club.”

If you would like, please email one favorite photo (jpeg format) of the Father/Special Person and Daughter to to be included in a slideshow. All photos due by April 20th.

Reservation Form

Third Graders Write Letters to King George

From Mary Carnevale, Grade 3 Teacher:
Third grade social studies students recently completed a unit on the American Revolution. Students were assigned one of the 13 colonies to study and then imagined being a colonist and what life must have been like in the 1700s. The class worked collaboratively and discussed the experiences of the colonists as well as the causes and conditions that led to the Revolutionary War, such as unfair representation in England and taxation that burdened the colonies. Taking on the role of a colonist, the students each wrote a letter to King George III stating their case. The letters, written on parchment-looking paper, expressed how the colonists were divided in their loyalties. Some were loyal to England while some were in favor of independence. The loyalists expressed gratitude to the King for his outstanding leadership. The Patriots opposed the King and demanded their independence from England. The letter writing activity was fun for the students to see history “come alive.” Class presentations are being planned.

Early Years

Discovery Museum Makes Learning Fun

From Melissa Janes, Director of Early Childhood Development:
Students in Pre-K, K1, and K2 enjoyed an exciting field trip to the Discovery Museum in Acton on Thursday, March 14th. This child-centered science museum encourages exploration and creativity through hands-on experiences. Some of the areas to explore included water, simple machines, sound, light and color, and air. The two-story wind tunnels, the giant ball ramps, and daVinci’s Workshop for creating your own inventions were some of the favorites that the students are still talking about and are further proof that learning is fun!

Luck of the Irish in Pre-K Class

From Deanna Scott, Pre-K Teacher:
In Pre-K last week, Mrs. Ketter, Sorcha’s Mom came to visit our classroom to teach us about Ireland and St. Patrick’s Day. She spoke about the many different symbols in Ireland such as the Irish flag and a shamrock, and even brought a four-leaf clover plant to show us. Sorcha had special St. Patrick’s Day badges that her Granny sent all the way from Ireland for each of her friends and some gold coins. Hopefully the gold coins don’t belong to a sneaky Leprechaun or he’ll be coming to look for them! (Luckily, they were made of chocolate!!) We had so much fun looking at all of the special items Mrs. Ketter brought in and were so lucky she came in to visit.


From Jocelyn Saltzman, Director of EDP/Enrichment/Camp NDA:

Our wonderful winter enrichments are drawing to a close this week! There is still time to register for the spring enrichment sessions beginning March 25th. Click the button below to register for Archery, BZlilHands (an exciting new hands-on art class for grades K1-3), Running Club, and more!

Enrichment Registration

Extended Day Program:
Come enjoy long, warmer days in EDP! Whether we are playing outside, enjoying some skits put on by our amazing high school team, or focusing on team-building activities, our group is having a blast!

Summer Camp:
Are you looking for a summer full of adventures? Sign up for one, two, or all eight weeks at Camp NDA! This summer is filled with choices from Wilderness Camps to Science and Technology Camp to Adventure Camp - we have it all! Our Tiny Campers program is open for ages 3 to 5, and our Main Camps cater to the 6-12 crowd! Register for Camp NDA by April 11th to receive the Early Bird Discount!

NEW THIS SUMMER: We are excited to announce our Counselor-in-Training (CIT) program, open to students 13 and 14 years old. (CITs pay at half-cost, with the exception of Adventure Camp)! In addition to gaining leadership skills, demonstrating activities and participating in all the fun, CITs can expect some quality bonding time with one another! Explore more about Summer 2019 on our website using the button below!

Are you someone who enjoys playing outside, fostering creativity in youth, an avid boat lover, or a certified Lifeguard? Join our staff team at Camp NDA! Contact Jocelyn Saltzman, Director, at

Register for Camp NDA


Two Upcoming Events Welcome Back Alumnae/i

From Kristen Bowes Stella '02, Institutional Advancement Coordinator:
The Academy is excited to welcome reunion years back to campus to partake in two fabulous events. On Sunday, May 5, 2019, the traditional Medallion Mass & Tea will be held in Our Lady's Chapel. This special event celebrating reunion classes recognizes the sisterhood of NDA alumnae and serves as an induction for the Alumnae Association's newest members, the Class of 2019. On Friday, May 31, 2019, be our guests of honor at the second annual Alumnae/i Celebration. Reconnect with the school and classmates and enjoy a festive and relaxing evening on the grounds of the Academy. We look forward to celebrating with you! 

Learn More and Register


Parent Ambassadors and Faculty Members Thanked for Help

The Academy would like to thank the parents and faculty members who helped us welcome members of the Greater Nashua Chamber of Commerce as the host of the organization's Business After Hours event. Faculty members helped with tours and entertainment and many parents supported us by transporting their students to school to participate in the game show and musical performance. Special gratitude is extended to the members of our Parent Ambassador group who were present: Russ Gavlak, Carole Barker, and Angela Bradley. The ambassadors play a vital role by mingling with our guests and helping to advance our community relations and advocate for the quality education we deliver. Thank you to all who assisted us in our outreach efforts!

Academy of Notre Dame
180 Middlesex Road, Tyngsboro, MA 01879


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