Welcome November


THE NEW DIGITAL DIVIDE

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As a follow-up to Ms. Kaori’s early childhood parent evening on electronic media and children’s senses, this week’s New York Times article “The Digital Gap Between Rich and Poor Kids is Not What We Expected” offers further insight into the issue of screen time:

It wasn’t long ago that the worry was that rich students would have access to the internet earlier, gaining tech skills and creating a digital divide. Schools ask students to do homework online, while only about two-thirds of people in the U.S. have broadband internet service. But now, as Silicon Valley’s parents increasingly panic over the impact screens have on their children and move toward screen-free lifestyles, worries over a new digital divide are rising. It could happen that the children of poorer and middle-class parents will be raised by screens, while the children of Silicon Valley’s elite will be going back to wooden toys and the luxury of human interaction.

The psychologist Richard Freed, who wrote a book about the dangers of screen-time for children and how to connect them back to real world experiences, divides his time between speaking before packed rooms in Silicon Valley and his clinical practice with low-income families in the far East Bay, where he is often the first one to tell parents that limiting screen-time might help with attention and behavior issues.

“I go from speaking to a group in Palo Alto who have read my book to Antioch, where I am the first person to mention any of these risks,” Dr. Freed said.

He worries especially about how the psychologists who work for these companies make the tools phenomenally addictive, as many are well-versed in the field of persuasive design (or how to influence human behavior through the screen). Examples: YouTube next video autoplays; the slot machine-like pleasure of refreshing Instagram for likes; Snapchat streaks.

“The digital divide was about access to technology, and now that everyone has access, the new digital divide is limiting access to technology,” said Chris Anderson, the former editor of Wired magazine…

READ MORE

And a second New York Times article!

NY Times: A Dark Consensus About Screens and Kids Begins to Emerge in Silicon Valley


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Our annual Winter Auction goes live on November 26th and we need your help to gather donations! Donations of all kinds and values are warmly welcomed, from one-on-one classes teaching something you’re great at (last year parents offered baking, dumpling-making, hat-making, and pickling classes) to services (yoga classes, reiki, bodywork, facials, coaching), handmade goods (paintings, prints, jewelry, knit items, etc.) to vacation homes (donate a weekend at your house upstate!). You can also donate gift certificates, tickets to events and shows, digital goods and downloads, and babysitting! Or use your creativity and style to come up with your own unique donation.

Another important way that you can help is by soliciting donations from friends, family, and local businesses. Your local coffee shop or cafe may love the opportunity to support our school and be recognized by our diverse community. In the past we’ve had yoga studios, arts organizations, meditation centers, clothing and toy shops, bookstores, bars, and restaurants offer generous donations simply because a parent walked in and asked.

Attached is a flyer you can use when asking for donations to help introduce our school to prospective donors. Please email auction@newamsterdamschool.org with any questions, and use the link below (also found on our homepage) to enter your donation(s) into the auction, preferably by November 20.

Let’s come together to make this the best auction yet!


MIXED-AGE KINDERGARTEN FUN…


BOARD MEMBER MAXWELL RYAN ON BRINGING WALDORF INTO your HOME

New Amsterdam School board member, founder of Apartment Therapy, and Oberlin alum Maxwell Ryan talks about Waldorf principles as inspiration for home design in this month’s Oberlin Alumni Magazine. Read the entire article below.

OBERLIN: THE APARTMENT THERAPIST WILL SEE YOU NOW

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SAVE THE DATE

Brooklyn Waldorf Event: LGBTQ+ Identity Development: A Presentation and Q+A with Parents and Caregivers
Thursday, November 8th, 6:30 - 7:30pm
Brooklyn Waldorf School

Coffee Friday
Friday, November 9th, 8:30 - 9:30am
Free coffee! Good company! Head downstairs after drop-off

Garden Work Weekend + David's Fix Up Crew
Saturday + Sunday, November 10 + 11
Help fix up the school and garden! See details below

NO SCHOOL (Parent/Teacher Conferences)
Monday, November 12th
Please meet your child's teacher at your conference time. Childcare will be available 7:45am - 6:00pm ($20/hour, $5/hour for each additional sibling). Please email belle@newamsterdamschool.org to reserve a spot.

Lantern Walk - RAIN DATE!
MOVED to Friday, November 16, 6:00 - 7:00pm
Meet in your classroom at 6:00pm for cider. Walk to El Jardin begins promptly at 6:30pm


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GARDEN WORK WEEKEND

Join the garden committee 10am to 2pm on Sat 11/10 & Sun 11/11 at El Jardin to spruce up the garden. No experience necessary!

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Roll up your sleeves and come help David (DiaLuna’s dad) with handyman work at the school this Saturday, 11/10 from 1-4pm.


LANTERN WALK RAIN DATE! MOVED TO NEXT FRIDAY!

Since Friday evening looks like heavy storms, the Lantern Walk will be moved to NEXT FRIDAY, 11/16 from 6:00 - 7:00pm.


SIMPLICTY PARENTING GROUP

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Please contact Jennifer if you would like to form an evening book group for Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne.


AMAZON SMILE

Did you know that your Amazon purchases could be raising funds for our school? Shop through Amazon Smile to easily help our school:

1. Go to smile.amazon.com

2. Choose New Amsterdam School as your selected charity

3. Shop as normal and a percentage of what you spend is automatically donated to our school! 


MAKING FLOWER RANGOLIS FOR DIWALI!

Thank you Veer (former 2nd grade classmate) for visiting Ms. En’s classroom again and sharing your culture with us. Diwali is the Hindu Festival of Lights.


Belle Savransky