Welcome to Lower School!

by Johanna Aeschliman, Lower School Director
Dear Lower School Families,
I hope you got some rest and enjoyed some quality family time this summer. While I’ve had a busier summer than usual, I was able to spend some time with loved ones on Craigville Beach in Centerville, MA and on the docks of Lake Winnipesaukee, in Tuftonboro, NH. 
Part of my summer was spent hiring amazing new faculty members. John highlighted some of our new hires in his Comings and Goings letter in June. I am very excited to welcome and share our newest Lower School faculty with you:

  • Melody Chang, K-5 Mandarin Teacher
  • Martita Galindo, First Grade Teacher (with Selma Quemada Valenzuela)
  • Monsieur Joyce, Physical Education K-5
  • Sarah Porzig, Learning Specialist K-5
  • Tiffany Proehl, K-8 Technology Integrator
  • Mark Roquet, K-8 Head Librarian and 6th-grade Advisor
Amy Leach, our part-time Learning Specialist, is also returning. 
Here are the 2020-2021 Teaching Assistants:
  • Kindergarten - Caroline Kanner and Sarah Stephen
  • First Grade - Peggy Lam and Antonio Quadra
  • Second Grade - Lennon Fanning
  • Third Grade - Lucy Featherston and Dominique Asuncion
  • Fourth Grade - Nick Wuebben
  • Fifth Grade - Aisha Bastiaans
Class Lists
Class lists are published. Please understand that a lot of thought and consideration went into the process of placing students. This process included input from last year’s classroom teachers; Denise Breland, Director of Student Life and Dean of Students; Donnie Smith, Director of Admissions; and Meredith Spencer, Director of Equity and Inclusion along with feedback from families and students. 
Lower School School Supply Pick Up (August 18)
On Tuesday, August 18 from 3:30 - 5:30, we will have a K-5th grade supply pick up. This is the first of several school supply picks ups we will offer for students. Supplies include grade-specific materials your child will need for assignments in core and specialist classes. If you are unable to pick up the supplies on this day, please contact Jill Nesbitt (jnesbitt@rdschool.org) to make other arrangements or, if you prefer to purchase materials yourself, you can contact Jill for the supply list for your child’s grade.
Lower School Laptop Pick Up (August 18)
On Tuesday, August 18 from 3:30 - 5:30, we will have a K-5th laptop pick up. All 3-5th grade students are being provided with a Chromebook. If your student is in Grades K-2 and they have access to a laptop or desktop, your child can use these to access the RDConnects@HOME program. If they do not have one, then you may request to borrow a laptop from the School by emailing Jill Nesbitt (jnesbitt@rdschool.org).
Lower School Mini-Conferences (August 17-18)
Mini-Conferences are a 15-20 minute meeting for parents/guardians to share their child’s strengths and areas for growth, along with any other information that will help build the school/home partnership. Due to the pandemic, Mini-Conferences will be held via Zoom for grades K-5 on Monday, August 17, and Tuesday, August 18. Limited slots will be available on Wednesday, August 19. You will receive an email from Angela Hsu, Executive Assistant, with instructions on how to sign-up for Mini-Conferences.
Summer Reading
Each year, Redwood Day assigns summer reading for all employees. This year, we’re reading How to Raise An Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success by Julie Lythcott-Haims. We will host a virtual parent/guardian book club event featuring the book this year. You can view a Ted Talk by Lythcott-Haims HERE.
Building our home/school partnership
I look forward to meeting your family and building our home/school partnership. Please feel free to reach out via email with any questions.
Johanna Aeschliman
Lower School Director