April 5, 2019

Cloth draped cross in Our Lady's Chapel in preparation for the Upper School's Lenten Prayer Service on Wednesday, April 3, 2019.

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,

It is so good to see and feel that Spring has arrived in New England (and that the Red Sox home opener is coming up soon!). It is also the season of Lent and a wonderful time to strengthen our relationship with God through prayer, fasting, and repentance as we prepare for the celebration of Easter and the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Our students and staff have spent time planning and coordinating prayers, activities, discussions and services to make this most important period of the liturgical year all the more meaningful. The Upper School held a Stations of the Cross devotional last week for those who wanted to walk the stations in the Chapel and contemplate the Passion of Christ.  The Lower School students are also preparing for a Stations of the Cross service which will be held after break when Sr. Jeanne returns from bereavement leave. Lenten prayer services have also been held as we remember Christ's suffering and sacrifice.

I wish our entire community a peaceful Lenten journey as we approach the joys that will meet us on Easter morning.

God bless,

Academy Beacon: The Independent School Investment

This month's Academy Beacon blog post was written by Elisa Lellios, Director of Admissions:
As parents, we want our children to have the best possible education available. Since every student is an individual, with unique strengths, challenges, passions, and goals, where this “best possible education” can be found may also vary. Finding the right fit can be daunting, but when the “right fit” comes with a tuition fee, it is always good to be reminded about why that investment delivers such incredible dividends for students and for parents.

Read More

Two NDA Students Win State Handwriting Honors

From Elizabeth O'Connell, Lower School Principal:
Students at the Academy were asked to participate in the Zaner-Bloser National Handwriting Contest. Students had the opportunity to show their best handwriting, within their respective grade level, and compete in the contest. There were nine student entry forms submitted from grade Kindergarten 2 through Grade 8. The handwriting submissions were sent on to Ohio for final judging. The Academy was just notified that we have two students who were chosen to represent NDA at the national level for a chance to be named one of nine Grand National Champions! Congratulations to Smaira Dhillon (K2) and to Mumbi Chege (6B). Each student receives am engraved Zaner-Bloser State Winner Medallion and the teacher receives an engraved Glass Diamond Award. The Academy has also received a $100 coupon for Zaner-Bloser materials.

Register to Play this Year's Memorial Golf Tournament

From Kristen Bowes Stella '02, Coordinator for Institutional Advancement:
Spots are filling up fast for the Academy's 27th Annual Golf Tournament being held this year in memory of Eric Hanson, parent and Board member. Don't miss your chance to honor Mr. Hanson and to play one of New England's finest private golf courses, Vesper Country Club. Not a golfer? Sponsorship opportunities are also available. With the generosity of parents, alumnae/i, friends, and organizations we will be able to ensure a bright future for the students at the Academy of Notre Dame. Click the button below for more information and registration.

Golf Information

"Annie" Set to Open Friday, April 5th

Annie opens tonight, April 5th, at 7 p.m. with two additional performances at 2 and 7 p.m. on Saturday, April 6th. Meet the cast after the Saturday matinee! Tickets are $10 at the door.

Tyngsborough Invites You to Health Fair

The town of Tyngsborough's Health and Safety Fair will be held tomorrow, Saturday, April 6th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Tyngsborough Elementary School. This is a free community event that will offer something for everyone. There will be free health screenings, free child identification kits, health and wellness education and many fun activities for all ages. Additionally, The Lions Club International will be in attendance and is bringing a state of the art vision screener designed to catch eye problems in children ages 2 to 10.  For more information, click the button below to download the flyer.

Download Flyer

Newsletter Dates Alter in April

From Cindy Boynton, Director of Marketing and Communications:
Please note that due to Easter break, the next issue of the Bi-Weekly Newsletter will be published on Friday, April 26th.

From the Editor:

The Bi-Weekly Newsletter is produced by the Communications and Marketing Department. Submissions should be emailed to Cindy Boynton at cboynton@ndatyngsboro.org 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 24
Noon, Wednesday, May 8
Noon, Wednesday, May 22
Noon, Wednesday, June 5

Newsletter Publish Date

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

Upper School

Prodigal Son Story Adapted for Lenten Prayer Service

From Marketing Student Danielle Wuerdeman:
This past Wednesday, April 3rd, the Upper School community joined together in the Chapel for a Lenten Prayer Service. Mrs. Griffin led the school in a reading of the Parable of the Lost Daughter, which was adapted from the Prodigal Son story for our all-girls environment. The story is one of separation through selfish acts and the restoration of relationships, as well as repentance and receiving forgiveness. After reflecting on the reading, students and faculty were asked to write down on small pieces of paper things they felt were preventing them from achieving a better relationship with themselves, others, and God. When finished, all were invited to tear up the paper and place it into a jar, symbolizing how, from that moment forward, the roadblocks of each individual are dissolved, allowing them to begin to love themselves and God as this Lenten season comes to a close. The service ended with a quote from Catholic theologian Henri Nouwen that reiterates the themes meditated on by the community: “The question is not, “How am I to find God?” but, “How am I to let myself be found by God?” The question is not, “How am I to know God?” but, “How am I to let myself be known by God?” And, finally, the question is not, “How am I to love God?” but, “How am I to let myself be loved by God?” God is looking into the distance for me, trying to find me, and longing to bring me home.”

All Aboard Lana's Journey to College

By Marketing Student Lana Sukkar:
Fellow students: are you feeling overwhelmed by the college admissions process? Me too! I’m Lana, a junior here at NDA who is now realizing that it’s crunch time! I have been working hard toward this goal for the past 11 years. However, now that it’s time to board this plane to my unknown destination, I am quite unnerved. There is so much to consider; so much to do that my to-do list is daunting! If you are feeling adventurous, hop aboard and join me on this journey as I blog about my progress. Hopefully, I’ll be able to shed some light on the process and we’ll have some fun along the way. If nothing else, you can commiserate with me. All aboard!

Read Lana's Introductory Blog

Memory Project Artwork Reaches Rohingya

For the second year, Ms. Shaw provided her Studio Art students the opportunity to participate in a profoundly moving art project that connects them with children half way around the world. Through the Memory Project, 12 students were given photos of children living in the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh. The students used the photos to create portraits of the children and then sent them back as a way of communicating how much they care for the children's well being. 

As you will see in the following 4-minute video, the children were so excited to receive the Memory Project artwork which included work from nearly four thousand young artists all over the world! What an amazing way to make an impact!

Students Honored for the Month of February

Student of the Month:
Katherine (Kat) Aste was named the Student of the Month for the countless hours she has spent in school and out developing choreography for the musical Annie. She has become a leader both on and off the stage, assuming multiple tasks to help produce this enormous production. She takes the time to work with each character in each song, and can be depended upon to run rehearsals if needed. She coordinates t-shirt sales, builds sets, runs fundraisers, as well as numerous other projects all while volunteering at her local dance studio. For doing all this as well as being inducted into the National Honor Society, we say Congratulations to Kat!

Designated Senior:
The Designated Senior for the month of February is Julie Getchell who is described as someone who always has a positive attitude. A member of 1804 Society, Destination Imagination and Damies Digest, Julie also finds time to be a Eucharistic minister and raises money every year for juvenile diabetes. Her leadership roles include co-president for the National Honor Society and a captain of the volleyball team. Congratulations Julie!

Reservations Open for Yearbook Ads and Books

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

From Lisa Zappala, Athletics Director:

All spring teams opened their seasons this past week.


Although the Tennis team was shut out 5-0 by NDA Worcester, both 1st singles (Freshman Sarah Houston) and 3rd singles (Junior Hannah McLeod) went to three sets.

Track & Field:

Despite missing nine team members for the first meet due to the musical and injuries, the Track & Field team had a decent showing in their first meet. NDA swept the mile led by Senior captain Annabelle Fandozzi in 1st place followed by Freshman Catie Johnson in 2nd and Sophomore Ishani Patel in 3rd. Other strong performers in various events were Sophomores Emily Aho, Sophia Jean, Kyra Pugsley and Ashley Tovar.


The Softball team had a rough start dropping their first two games to Tahanto Regional and Rockport by wide margins. They hope to improve both offensively and defensively.

Middle School

21 Inducted into Junior National Beta Club

From Jillian Boudreau, Lower/Middle School Dean of Students:
On Friday, March 29th, 21 Middle School students were inducted into the Academy’s chapter of the Junior National Beta Club. As the nation's largest independent, non-profit, educational youth organization, Beta Club is committed to recognizing and promoting high academic achievement, rewarding and nurturing worthy character, fostering leadership skills and encouraging service to others. To be eligible for induction 7th or 8th grade students must maintain a 90 or above in all classes and complete a minimum of 20 hours of community service.

While some students performed all their service hours for one organization, others explored a variety of opportunities, including but not limited to, the Academy’s extended day program, local food pantries, police stations, animal shelters, and churches. Congratulations to:

Allison Clark
Ava Conroy
Sophia Creegan
Alana Daddario
Bella Dickinson
Farida Elghamrawy
Polina Florinskaya

Halianna Gacek
Lillian Golden
Cooper Granville
Elizabeth Lu
Julia Maria
Kira Massabni
Jessica Maina

Trieuphu Nguyen
Nikki Patel
Rianna Santra
Sophia Sears
Elias Theofilopoulos
Akshaya Vadivel
Bryce Waweru

7th Graders Learn Morse Code

From Ian Craig, Middle School Social Studies Teacher:
The seventh graders have been learning about the Industrial Revolution and new inventions of the time. One particular invention was Samuel Morse's telegraph which fundamentally changed the way in which we communicate over long distances. In class, students got to send Morse Code by using an improvised version of the telegraph in spelling out their names and learning the common distress call S.O.S. They also learned how the R.M.S. Titanic was one of the first ships to use S.O.S. on the night of April 14-15, 1912.

Mr. Craig Published in History Magazine

Congratulations to Middle School Social Studies teacher, Ian Craig, for the publication of an article in an online history magazine. History is Now published the piece entitled, "President James Buchanan and the American Civil War." The article is part one of a four-part series on the presidency of James Buchanan. The series is based on Ian's master's dissertation.

This is Mr. Craig's first published piece. He has been employed by the Academy since 2014. Click the button below and scroll down the page to read his article about President Buchanan.

Read Article

Lancer's Round-Up

From Nate Froment, Lower School Athletic Director:

Congratulations to the boys and girls JV Basketball teams on a great season! The girls JV team won the league championship by defeating St. Michael School 14-8. Natalia Conceicao, Sophia Leary, and Grace Slocumb were standout performers.

The boys lost a hard fought game in the finals to Lowell Community Charter. Matt Chau, Sean Hughes, Finn Ramseyer, Luke Faletra, and Ricky Walent were standout performers.

Spring Sports:
Spring Sports have begun and the teams have been fortunate enough to get outdoors and conduct full practices. The games will begin after April vacation. Good luck to all teams this season!

Lower School

Bookmark Design Earns First Grader Honorable Mention

From Kathy Smith, Librarian and Media Specialist:
We could not be happier to share the exciting news and extend our warmest congratulations to Teddy Pitta (Gr. 1) on winning Honorable Mention for his bookmark design in the recent annual bookmark competition run by the Massachusetts School Library Association. Teddy's design highlighted this year's theme, "School Libraries are for Everyone." He and his family and friends are invited to attend the Massachusetts School Library Association's 2019 Bookmark competition awards event, where he will be celebrated along with the other contest winners. As an Honorable Mention winner, Teddy will receive a gift card as well as copies of his bookmark and other prizes. We thank Teddy and all of our students for participating in the competition and demonstrating that school libraries are indeed a valuable resource in every child’s life!

The World of Science in Third Grade

From Caitlin Dwyer, Grade 3 Teacher:
Third grade science has been filled with many exciting experiments and investigations this year. We started the year talking about plants and how they work. For an experiment, we added food coloring to water and placed a white flower in each cup. Students made a hypothesis, observations, and a conclusion about their findings. Our room was filled with colorful flowers by the end of the experiment! Next, we moved into a unit about weather. To start the unit, students completed a weather log for one week to observe the weather in our area. Then students worked in small groups to research a particular type of storm. Research was done in class on iPads and in books, as well as during computer class. Posters were created to help each group present their findings. To wrap up the weather unit, third graders had the opportunity to attend a weather presentation by Barry Burbank from Channel 4 News. We are just finishing up our third unit this week about force and friction. This unit has many hands-on learning experiences. Students pushed and pulled items all around our classroom to study force and friction, and they made ramps, catapults, and even magnetic slime! As we move forward into spring, we will be circling back to life science to talk about animals. I don’t want to spoil the surprise just yet, but our next experiment is going to be very EGGciting!

Notre Dame Lenten Program Recognizes Helping Hands

From Elizabeth O'Connell, Principal:
As we are in the midst of the Lenten Season, we are reminded that it is a time not only for prayer and fasting but also for almsgiving by giving to the less fortunate and to those in need. Have you noticed the students wearing a purple and white Helping Hand sticker? If so, they have been recognized by their teacher for performing an action that helps them make a better world. This Helping Hand symbol is part of the Notre Dame Mission Lenten Program. The theme this Lenten Season is Compassion: Humanity and The World. Distributed to classes were materials and resources focused on compassion, thoughtfulness and mindfulness about how our interactions with others can change the world. The Lenten calendar and the stories about the global work the sisters promote connected our students and teachers across the world. 

Third Graders Escape 5 Wits

Last week third graders made an escape! Not to worry it was an escape from an escape room at 5 Wits in Foxboro. 5 Wits offers opportunities for students to work together as a team to solve the puzzles in order to “escape” from the rooms. The answers to the puzzles are not obvious, so groups need to use critical thinking skills in order to solve them. Each group was able to participate in two escape rooms: Espionage and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. The trip was very successful and loved by everyone (even the teachers and parents!). As an added bonus, everyone was able to take a picture in front of Gillette Stadium. The only thing that could have made this trip better would have been seeing Tom Brady!

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 parentsclub@ndatyngsboro.org to be included in a slideshow. All photos are due by April 20th.

Reservation Form

Easter Basket Raffle Fundraiser for Oliver Production

The Academy Playmakers, the Lower School Drama Club, is sponsoring an Easter Egg Scramble and Basket Raffle as a fundraiser for the upcoming production of Oliver! to be staged May 17th-19th. Raffle tickets may be purchased from Mrs. Linda Connolly. There are four baskets being raffled: a Patriots Basket, a Red Sox Basket, a Celtics Basket and an Easter Basket. Baskets will be on display during the school day outside of Mrs. Connolly’s Office. Raffle tickets are 1-$1.00, 3-$2.00 and 8-$5.00. The drawing will be held on April 12th. As an added feature for our students, on Friday, April 12th, there will be an Easter Egg Scramble. Students will pick an Easter Egg for $1.00 and the students can win items such as Homework Passes and candy. Tickets will be sold on the first floor in Mrs. Connolly’s office as well as in Mr. Flynn’s classroom, Homeroom 8A, Room #318.

Early Years

Early Years Prepares for Week of the Young Child

From Melissa Janes, Director of Early Childhood Development:
Teachers and students in grades PreK-K2 have been busy preparing for this year’s “Week of the Young Child” taking place April 8th-12th. This annual celebration focuses on the importance of quality early childhood education. The plans include multiple opportunities for all three levels of the Early Years program to gather together for work, play, and celebrating. Some of the highlights will be a puppet show, a sing-along, gardening and picnic lunch, and collaborative projects. It promises to be an exciting week celebrating our youngest learners!

K1 Students are World Travelers

From Melissa Janes, Director of Early Childhood Development:
Most children love animals and the K1 students are no exception! The class recently finished up a unit of study about the Polar Regions and the animals that call these cold places home. From polar bears to penguins, seals to narwhals, the K1 students know all about the unique needs for life in the Polar Regions. After finishing up this unit, they put stamps in their homemade passports and voted on the next habitat they would like to study. Next stop...the Amazon Rainforest! Bon Voyage, K1!


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

Spring Enrichments have begun, and our students and staff are having a blast! It is so much fun for our NDA family to explore outside in the sunshine. The photo features a few of our Running Club members celebrating the successful completion of a team challenge!

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!

Calling all Certified Lifeguards:
Are you someone who enjoys playing outside, fostering creativity in youth, an avid boat lover, or someone who simply loves kids and the outdoors? Join our awesome staff team at Camp NDA! Contact Jocelyn Saltzman, Camp NDA Director, at edp@ndatyngsboro.org

Register for Camp NDA


Walk-A-Thon Raises Money for Scholarship Fund

From Kristen Bowes Stella '02, Institutional Advancement Coordinator:
Join the NDA Community for the 5th Annual Susan Bradley Memorial Walk-A-Thon on Sunday, April 28, 2019! All proceeds from the Walk-A-Thon will support the Susan Scanlon Bradley Scholarship for students attending the Academy's Upper School. Susan Bradley was a wife, mother of three NDA graduates, daughter, sister, cousin, teacher, and friend. While Susan did not seek the limelight, she would be ecstatic to know the funds being raised will support a student at NDA, the school where all three of her children graduated from.

Learn More and Register


Lunchtime Surprise Thanks Lancers for Kindness

The NDA community is proud of our Upper School Basketball team for nominating Fellowship Christian Academy for the MIAA Sportsmanship award. FCA won the honor, and as a surprise, sent along chocolate pops and a thank you card to the Lancers in gratitude for the nomination. 

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


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