Unity PTO to Host Online March Madness Apparel Sale

Written by Deborah Marcus. Posted in Daily Life at Unity Charter School, Sustainability, Uncategorized

by Sheena Sullivan
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The PTO is rolling out new Unity Apparel this March. The MARCH MADNESS SALE will take place from March 1st to March 11th with orders being received in Early April. The new Unity apparel, featuring the school colors of blue and green, was carefully selected with our mission in mind. Most items are organic and made in the USA. All items are eco-friendly.

Items will only be available online for purchase and the PTO will no longer carry inventory on site. The PTO decided to make the switch to online orders to prevent any over ordering or potential waste. Switching to online orders also enabled them to offer a variety of high-quality organic items to the community without an investment of funds. The PTO wants everyone to show their school spirit so they kept prices lower by choosing not to make this a large fundraiser.

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The PTO partnered with Mantis Graphics to help develop the new Unity Apparel line. Since opening in 1996, Mantis Graphics has been committed to being green, using screen-printing techniques and inks that are safe for the environment and even riding their bikes to work!

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The new Unity Apparel line will include short sleeve shirts, long sleeve shirts, kid hoodies, adult hoodies and beanies. Other items for purchase are the Unity stainless steel travel mug, Unity tote and our *new* Unity zero waste kits. This kit was developed to keep our community events zero waste. The set includes a reusable recyclable drawstring tote along with 4 sets of cutlery, 4 16oz cups, 4 small plates and 4 large plates by Preserve. The dinnerware set is made of 100% recycled #5 plastic and is 100% recyclable. To find out more about Preserve, a mission-minded company, check out https://www.preserveproducts.com/recycle. Get your kit today and be ready for ECO FunFest and all Unity events!

Show your Unity pride and support by purchasing your spirit wear during the March Madness Sale!

About the Author

Sheena Sullivan is the mother of Adam and Samer Anshasi and PTO president. She loves volunteering at Unity and helping parents connect with their children’s school. She enjoys spending time with her family and gardening.

The opinions expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Unity Charter School. Unity Charter School is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the author.

Popcorn Helps Learning Group Understand the States of Matter

Written by Deborah Marcus. Posted in Daily Life at Unity Charter School, Education, Health and Nutrition, Sustainability, Uncategorized, Whole Child Education

by Jennifer Carcich
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Last spring, Jen’s learning group planted non-GMO popcorn in the school’s organic garden. It was a tough summer, but the harvest this fall allowed for the students to pick and dry just enough ears of corn to use for their science unit.

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The students have learned about the states of matter and how heat is the variable that makes matter change to various states. Just in time for Thanksgiving, the students were able to use their kernels to see what happens when the tiniest bit of liquid water is heated inside of the kernels. The water heats, changes to steam and explodes through the kernel’s non-permeable skin causing the kernel to “pop” open. It was an exciting and delicious way to learn about the states of mater! Yum!

About the Author

Jennifer Carcich is the 2/3 Grade Teacher and Sustainability Coordinator at Unity Charter School. This is her fifth year teaching at Unity Charter School. She is certified to teach both general education and special education students and has been in the teaching field since 1994. Jennifer takes pride in helping Unity Charter School and continuing to strengthen its unique and innovative approach to education and bring forth the school’s mission.

The opinions expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Unity Charter School. Unity Charter School is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the author.

Apples and Learning at Sun High Orchards Field Trip

Written by Deborah Marcus. Posted in Daily Life at Unity Charter School, Education, Field Trip, Health and Nutrition, Sustainability

By Daisy Illescas
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Last week Dina’s K class and Megan’s K/1 class had the privilege to go on a field trip to Sun High Orchards in Randolph, NJ. It was perfect fall weather with the wind blowing on a beautiful sunny day. Once we arrived at the field trip, we were greeted by Farmer Karen who was our guide. We went to four different stations in which Farmer Karen shared important information with us.

She shared how corn is actually in many products that are eaten at home and in certain products that are biodegradable. Both classes were able to participate and see how if a certain item is biodegradable it dissolves in water.

Farmer Karen then took us to another station where we discussed animals. Farmer Karen shared how certain animals help protect the farm from other animals. For example, dogs are an important animal to have on a farm because they help protect the crops. If animals such as deer and turkeys go to the farm, they can eat apples, pumpkins and even damage trees!

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Just like in our gardening science lesson, we were told by Farmer Karen how certain insects are helpful and others are harmful. We played a game of guessing which animal was helpful or harmful to the plants at the farm. We learned that caterpillar even though they are cute little insects, are actually harmful to plants because they eat the leaves. Ladybugs are very helpful insects because they eat the very harmful very harmful aphid, which prevents the aphids from damaging plants.

We also learned the importance of having bees! Bees are responsible for pollination. Farmer Karen explained to us that bees help with creating more apples on the apples trees. The bees transfer pollen from one flower to the next and once pollinated, an apple will grow. We then learned an apple rap song, “Way up high in the apple tree, two little apples smiled at me. I shook that tree as hard as I could, and down came the apples. Mmmm, they were good!”

After our fun educational tour, we were able to get apples, choose a pumpkin, and try some delicious cider! We couldn’t leave the farm without seeing some animals. We saw rabbits, chickens, ponies, and a pig.

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About the Author

Daisy Illescas is a student teacher in Megan’s K/1 learning group. She is currently finishing up her last college semester at William Paterson. She is enjoying her time at Unity, and glad to be in such a great classroom of children and cooperating teacher. She loves to watch movies as well as spend time with her nephews.

The opinions expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Unity Charter School. Unity Charter School is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the author.

Learning About the Power of Water

Written by Deborah Marcus. Posted in Education, Field Trip, Sustainability, Uncategorized

By Kimberly McCurnin

The 1/2 Learning Group’s field trip to Historic Speedwell on Wednesday, October 21st was an AMAZING kick off to group’s next unit, which is the study of Water and its Power! Upon arrival at Historic Speedwell, they began by playing some great outdoor games! The first game helped us understand how water can be a force that puts something into motion. The second helped us better understand the three states of water: solid, liquid, and gas.

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After the games, we actually saw water act as a force used to do “work” with a waterwheel! We learned that back when Alfred Vail, the owner of the property of Historic Speedwell, was alive, they did not have electricity. They used Water Power as their source of energy. They used the waterwheel to power a gristmill (used to create flour), cut wood, and to do many other things!

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We also had the opportunity to visit Vail House, which is over 100 years old, where we went on a scavenger hunt to learn more about how people lived back over a hundred years ago! Students were excited to see Historic Speedwell being sustainable by reusing the paper that was given out for our scavenger hunt. Students were able to see how people ate differently based on the seasons, where the sickly and guests slept in the house, and even how a dutch-style door was used to keep the cool air in but the animals out of the house.

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The students enjoyed a zero-waste lunch on the picnic tables on the property and even had a few minutes of outdoor play time before boarding the buses to head back to school. Our chaperones, Deb Marcus, Ankita Roelofs, and Dawn Bankston, helped to make the trip successful!

About the Author

Kimberly McCurnin is in her second year as the 1/2 Learning Group Teacher at Unity Charter School. With a degree from Boston University in Early Childhood Education, Kimberly is thrilled to be a member of this special, close-knit commUnity and honored to be part of such a talented, passionate staff. In her spare time, Kimberly enjoys attending yoga classes and taking advantage of the wonderful culture and arts that New York City has to offer.

The opinions expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Unity Charter School. Unity Charter School is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the author.

Unity Doubles the Fun with Two Events in One Day!

Written by Deborah Marcus. Posted in Daily Life at Unity Charter School, Health and Nutrition, Middle School, Sustainability, Uncategorized, Whole Child Education

by Sheena Sullivan
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Unity hosted its annual Harvest Happening on Friday, October 30th. The morning was full of excitement as the children and teachers took part in the festive fall activities. Class parents were on hand to help with set up, games and chaperoning the groups. The fifth and sixth graders did an excellent job helping the younger students throughout the morning. Students in multi-age groups happily moved from station to station. Stations included zombie tag, push the pumpkin, pumpkin relay race, craft, wax museum, creeper and monster toss. The students enjoyed popcorn and cider at the PTO snack station.

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After the Harvest Happening, parents were invited to Bring Your Parents to Lunch Day. Students and parents ate lunch in the beautifully decorated common room. Parents took part in an authentic Unity lunchroom experience and everyone seemed to enjoy it! Thank you to all the class parents, event volunteers, parent attendees, lunchroom helpers, kitchen helpers and dishwashers for making Friday so special. Thank you to the garden and beautification club for the beautiful centerpieces.

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About the Author

Sheena Sullivan is the mother of Adam and Samer Anshasi and PTO president. She loves volunteering at Unity and helping parents connect with their children’s school. She enjoys spending time with her family and gardening.

The opinions expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Unity Charter School. Unity Charter School is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the author.