149 Pleasant Street
Newton Centre, MA. 02459

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Welcome to the Mason-Rice PTO

We're glad you're a part of our vibrant community.  If you can't find something, have feedback about the site, etc., please send an email to Sarah, Sarah and Maureen (our PTO co-Presidents) at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  


Teacher- Staff Lunch

We will be providing our M-R teachers and staff with a simple lunch during their school wide afternoon meeting on FEBRUARY 10TH, 2015. This is not to be confused with the Annual Staff Appreciation Luncheon in May.It is a much simpler, smaller scale lunch. The first of these events was hosted by 3rd, 4th and 5th grade families earlier in the school year. This upcoming luncheon will  be hosted by the KINDERGARTEN, 1st and 2nd grade families. To sign up to help set up, clean up and/or contribute to this event, please click on the following link:  www.SignUpGenius.com/go/20F0D4CAFA622AA8-staff

Get up to speed on Math! 

***Note: We made a change due to the 5th grade trip to Brown on February 9.***

On consecutive Monday mornings in February, Newton's Math Curriculum Coordinator, Jennifer Shore, our math coach, Andrew Guttell, and selected Mason-Rice classroom teachers will present workshops for parents about the math program being taught in our classrooms. On February 2, we will walk parents through our 3-5 math program, and on February 9, we will look at our gr. K-2 math program. There will be a particular focus on how we teach computation at these grade levels. Please mark your calendars on these dates for 8:40-9:30AM in our Centre. Reminders will be offered throughout the month of January.

Understanding Our Differences Program Leaders Needed!

The Understanding Our Differences program provides our children with the opportunity to learn about differences through experiential activities, creative videos, and extraordinary guest speakers who speak openly about their challenges and successes. Our children are full participants in all activities and are encouraged to ask questions and fully engage with our guest speakers. The six units that children experience are:

  • Third Grade: Blindness & Visual Impairment and Deafness & Hard of Hearing
  • Fourth Grade: Chronic Medical Conditions and Learning Differences
  • Fifth Grade: Physical Disabilities, Intellectual Disabilities, and Autism Spectrum Disorders

We need session leaders for 5th grades and parent volunteers for grade 3, 4 & 5. The Understanding our Differences session leader is responsible for coordinating all aspects of one day of programming including presentation, coordinating and training volunteers and securing the guest speaker. Parent volunteers assist with the facilitation of activities and have the special opportunity to partake in the full program. The Understanding Our Differences central office provides all materials which are extremely assessable and easy to follow. We are grateful to Michele Rosenthal (Oliver Friedenthal’s Mom) for coordinating the 4th grade program and Ed Levy (Jonah & Ezra Levy's Dad) for coordinating the first session of the 5th grade program. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it coordinated the program for many years and would be happy to connect with any parent who is interested in serving as grade liaison. 

Help Cradles to Crayons Start the Year Off Strong!

It's time for the annual clothing and toy drive! This is a great way to clear out those toys and clothes your children no longer use while supporting C2C's efforts to provide children living in homeless or low-income situations with the things they need to thrive. Any new or gently used items are welcome and there is particular need for winter coats and accessories, children's clothing, sneakers, and baby books. Small items can be go in the C2C donation bin in the lobby. Larger donations can be taken to 32 Webster Court or to the C2C unit at Cold Spring Park. Thanks for your generosity!

Please join other Mason-Rice families at the Cradles to Crayons Giving Factory and see your donations in action! Our volunteer shift is on Saturday, February 7th from 10am-noon.  It is always a meaningful and rewarding experience and is also a wonderful to serve our local community alongside your children.  You will be amazed by the fantastic operation they have!  For more information, visit their website (http://www.cradlestocrayons.org/).  To sign up, email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it as soon as possible.


We have two parking issues that we need to address to maintain safe  routes to school for drivers and pedestrians. Please pay attention to  this and communicate this information to any grandparents, nannies or  caregivers.

First, our neighbors on Bracebridge Road (perpendicular to Pleasant St.) have graciously allowed us to park on their  private road for many years now. Lately they have felt like parkers have been  disrespectful including parking in front of driveways or across from driveways  limiting residents' ability to pull in or out. Given that:
•Please don't park in or block any part of a driveway when parking, even if you  think you are planning a quick drop-off.
•We have placed orange cones across from two driveways, eliminating  those parking spaces. Please DO NOT move the cones or park in those  areas.
•When we have snow, we strongly encourage you to NOT park on  Bracebridge for a few reasons: 1) An already narrow road becomes extremely  narrow and nearly impassable with parking on it.  2) As a gravel road, it  becomes very hard to plow and the road becomes incredibly icy and unsafe.
•A great alternative to parking on Bracebridge is parking just a bit  farther on Hancock Road (at the top of the hill) and walking down to school with  your child.

Our second problem area is Park Lane, particularly  when there is snow on the ground. Park Lane is a very narrow street with no  sidewalk on either side closest to Pleasant. We are working with the City of  Newton to install sidewalks here in 2015. However we need your help to keep our  walkers safe right now.
•Please leave a space for walkers to walk when parking on Park Lane.  (In other words, do not pull your car entirely off of the street, leaving no  space for walkers.) This happens frequently and walkers are forced to walk in  the street which is unsafe.
•Please do not park on both sides of the street on Park Lane. This  often blocks the pedestrian paths on both sides of the street and leaves very  little room for regular traffic to pass.

As always, we encourage you to walk with your child all or part of the way to school even through the winter.  Alternatively,  if you live farther away, the bus is a great option,  particularly as parking gets more complicated during snowy winter months.  You  can find bus transportation information here. 

We  appreciate your attention to both of these matters and your help in keeping both  drivers and pedestrian safe. We also want to maintain our reputation of being  good neighbors. Please email us if you have any questions at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Sarah, Sarah & Maureen

 Make the Blue Zone a Safe Zone!

This   year we are trying to proactively engage parents and caregivers in   making our Blue Zone and parking areas a safe place for our children. As   parents we want you to:

Thank you in advance for your attention to this important issue.

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PTO Programs and Events - Please contact us if you have any questions or sugggestions.  We welcome your feedback - contact any PTO co-President directly or email us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  Thank you.





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