April 1, 2011
I am creative
After this week’s chilly temperatures, we’ve all been in search of signs of spring. Here at Ellis, one sure sign is the annual Fine Arts Festival, coming up on April 10. This year’s theme is “The Arts from Local to Global” – where a variety of performances and visual art displays in the form of a “collage” will form a unique festival experience.

As I was walking through the School recently, I reflected on this idea of a collage – a form of art in which various materials are used to create a unique piece. I thought, on any given day, you could walk these very halls and discover your own virtual collage, an assemblage of creative sights and sounds.

You might hear instruments pouring from the music room or voices booming from the auditorium. Turn the corner, and you might come upon a remarkable visual arts display, be it ceramics, painting, drawing, or photography. Stop in my office and there too is an ever-changing gallery where every six weeks, student artwork selected by the faculty is on display.

The Fine Arts Festival is the culmination of the creativity displayed by our students every day, throughout the year.

Which Grade 12 summer reading book would you add to your own list of summer reading?

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Executive Director of the Union Project Named Keynote Speaker at Annual Ellis FAF
The Ellis School Visual and Performing Arts Departments proudly present the annual Fine Arts Festival on Sunday, April 10, 2011 in the Ellis Armory, from 2:00 to 5:00 pm.  This year's keynote speaker will be Jeffrey Dorsey, Executive Director and Programming Manger of the Union Project.
11 Honored at Cum Laude Assembly
At the annual Cum Laude assembly, 9 Ellis students were inducted into the Cum Laude Society and 2 students who were inducted as juniors last year were also honored.  The Cum Laude Society recognizes scholastic achievement in secondary schools while simultaneously striving to encourage qualities of excellence, justice, and honor. 
Girls of Steel Win Rookie Award - Twice!
The Girls FIRST Robotics Team, of which half is Ellis students, received the Rookie All-Star Award at the 2011 Pittsburgh Regional FIRST Robotics Competition and at the washington, DC regional competition.  The award “celebrates the rookie team exemplifying a young but strong partnership effort, as well as implementing the mission of FIRST to inspire students to learn more about science and technology.” 
Summer Reading Lists Available
As Director of Libraries Kathy Koenig states in her preamble to the summer reading lists, "...pleasure reading should be just that: pleasure.  Spend the summer reading -- anything and everything!"  The Ellis summer reading lists include recommendations for students in grades 1 - 12, and include the required reading for grades 2 - 12.  The lists are comprehensive, and offer selections in fiction, non-fiction, and drama.  Parents will find many books that will delight them as well on these lists -- be sure to take a look!
Director of Afghan Women's Fund to Visit Ellis
Fahima Vorgetts, Director of the Afghan Women’s Fund, will be on campus on Monday, April 4.  She will meet with students during the day, and in the evening will speak about the current state of the education of girls in Afghanistan.  He presentation will be at 7:00 pm in the Babcock Library.

Between 3:30 and 8:30 rugs, jewelry, and scarves handmade by the women of Afghanistan will be for sale.  All proceeds of these sales will benefit Ellis’ Afghan sister school, with the primary focus being to build a new library for the school.  

The sister school project began 6 years ago when Ellis students in the Asian Culture Club were moved to raise funds so that a brick and mortar school could be built that serves more than 1,200 girls.
Ellis Alumna Named Principal Harpist in Chile
Sarah Stern, Ellis class of 2002, has been named the Principal Harpist of the Orquesta Filarmónica in Santiago de Chile.  She will begin her first season with the orchestra this month, which will include subscription concerts, operas, and ballets.  After graduating from Ellis, Sarah attended the Eastman School of Music where she received a Bachelor of Music in harp performance in 2006.
Tiger Roars
Ellis 3rd grader Mishon Levine participated in Odyssey of the Mind, an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for children.  Her team placed 3rd in the western PA competition which involved working on story ideas and script writing, character development, mechanical design and construction. Congratulations Mishon!

10th grader Nina Nepa placed 1st overall in The Pink Invitational -- a gymnastics competition with the mission of finding fun and meaningful ways to educate girls and young women about the benefits of healthy lifestyle choices, organic products, good nutrition, regular physical activity and breast health, as well as raise awareness and funds for those affected by breast cancer.  Congratulations Nina!

Two Ellis swimmers competed in the WPIAL meet in early March.  Sarah Thornton won her heat in the 100 meter butterfly and placed 13th over-all.  Marie Concilus placed 6th overall in the 200 meter free style and placed 4th in the 500 meter free style, qualifying her for the State Meet at Bucknell University.  Congratulations ladies!

Ellis came in 4th place in Allegheny County for the 8th Grade Contest of the Pennsylvania Mathematics League.  The team consisted of our top 5 scores:  Lucy Newman, Maia Rosenfeld, Alexis Balog, Suzie Kazar, and a 3-way tie for Sruthi Muluk, Heather Harrington, and Abby Furlong.  Congratulations!

Every month, the Tiger Roars section of the GreenSheet highlights a small sampling of the magnificent achievements of our students.  If you run across these students on campus be sure to give them a shout out, and if someone asks you about Ellis, these stories provide a great starting point for talking about the wide range of skills and talents that define Ellis girls.  If you have a story to share about your favorite Ellisian, send it to Nancy-Rose Netchi, Director of Marketing and Communications.
Associate Head of School Named Head of Providence Country Day School
Associate Head of School and Development Director Vince Watchorn has been named the Head of School at Providence Country Day School, a coed independent school of 250 students in grades 6-12 located in Providence, Rhode Island.  Vince will join the Providence Country Day community this July. 

Vince joined Ellis in 2006 as the Director of Development and has led the successful growth of Ellis’ development program over the past five years.  He has connected with Ellisians far and wide, created a solid team of professionals in our development office, befriended foundation executives, written grants, and developed a successful annual fund program. 

He served as the coordinator of all aspects of the Head of School search process and transition which brought Randie Benedict to Ellis, and made sure that the many constituents who make up the Ellis family felt included and informed as the leadership of the School changed hands.  

Vince has also been instrumental in relationships with our Board of Trustees and our National Board of Alumnae Visitors; two groups that are critical to our day to day operations and long term success.  

A national search is underway for a Director of our development programs.  Be sure to check MyEllis for updated information on this process.

Congratulations Vince!
Ellis Partnership with Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
Ellis Junior Zaynee Malik is Ellis' first narrator in a pilot program with the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.  In this program, Ellis students will record their narrations of books with the use of high quality field equipment that is specially designed to compensate for ambient noises, and so does not require a traditional soundproof booth.  These audio recordings will be published digitally by the National Library Service.  Zaynee worked on the narration of former Congressman Bud Shuster's children's book, Double Buckeyes.

Ellis Partners with Pittsburgh Zoo in ECO-CELL Program
In keeping with our efforts to adopt more green and sustainable practices, Ellis has partnered with the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium in their committment to becoming a leader in connecting people to wildlife and conservation.  Working with the company ECO-CELL, we will collect used cell phones and other small electronic which are not able to be reused, and send them to be recycled using the best demonstrated technologies for recycling "e-waste". 
Upcoming Admissions Events
Ellis parents and students are always great ambassadors for the School.  Be sure to let your friends know about these upcoming Admissions events where they will be able to learn more about what it means to be an Ellis girl.

All School Open House, Tuesday, April 5, 2011, 9:00 am:  Student-led campus tours and interaction with current parents, faculty, and administration make Open House events a great source of information for prospective families.

Let's Play Yoga!, Thursday, May 12, 2011, 10:30 - 12:30:  Specially geared to parents and their 3 - 5 year old daughters, this yoga workshop will be fun, silly, and engaging.  Ellis parent and Amazing Yoga owner Karen Conley, a Baron Baptiste certified trainer, will lead this session.
Ellis Fund Update
Dear Fellow Parents,

Last week we passed the 50% parent participation mark with 199 parent gifts to the Ellis Fund! Thank you everyone for your support in achieving this tremendous milestone! It’s a huge mark of confidence in Ellis’ future that over half of our families have supported the school to date.

As we head into the last few months of this school-year, we know that for our eldest daughter, Rabia, her Ellis years will soon be behind her. With every passing day towards graduation she remains appreciative of the impact Ellis has had on her both academically and personally. We know that many parents feel the same way about Ellis.
Join Team Ellis at the Race for the Cure!
This year's Race for the Cure is on Sunday, May 8.  Become a member of the Ellis team by joining us for a bagel breakfast and a bus ride to and from the race.

The Rally Breakfast is open to all Ellis alumnae, students, faculty, parents and their families and friends.

Amy MacKay Larsen ’95 is looking for another bagel donation from Bruegger’s for our repast!  And Ellis Parents Association members Sharon LaBranche and Anna Maria Culkins will be working to entice more Ellis students and parents to join in.
Park for free at Ellis, load up on carbs, meet and greet your friends from Ellis, and get your transportation all on Sunday, May 8th.

Help Ellis support this important event that benefits all of us!

• Register for the Race on the Komen Race for the Cure site
• Click Join a Team
• Search for the Ellis Team and follow the instructions
• Email Liz Altman to reserve bagels and a seat on the bus!

Breakfast served in the Ellis Courtyard at 7:15 a.m.; buses leave at 8:00 am; buses return to Ellis after the race.
2011-2012 Final Calendar Available on MyEllis
The 2011-2012 school year calendar, with all divisional in-service and conference dates, has been finalized and is available on MyEllis.

Of note is a change to the Presidents' Day weekend.  Due to concerns from parents across the School about a 3-day break so close to our spring break, and in consultation with our academic leaders and the executive leadership of the Ellis Parents Association, we have amended the February schedule.  We will be in session for a regular class day on Tuesday, February 21, 2012.  As already stated, there will be no school for students on Friday, February 17 and Monday, February 20.

Remember, you can always find this downloadable version of the calendar in the downloads channel on MyEllis.
Birthday Books
Molly Brenner  March 18th
Sugar Cookies:  Sweet Little Lessons on Love

Holly Goodwin  March 22nd
Everything for a Dog

Skylar Shapiro  March 19th
The Magic School Bus and the Climate Challenge

Jayce Sledge  March 18th
The Popularity Papers

The Ellis School Birthday Book Program is a way for families with students in the Lower School to mark their daughter's growth by giving a new book to the library in celebration of her birthday.  Please note that this program is not connected with the annual fund and does not count toward annual fund participation.  For more information, contact librarian Sara Brooke.
Results of last month's Polling Question
Last month, we asked which of several interesting internship opportunities that have been available for Ellis girls you would most like to have held when you were in high school.  The results are in! 

50% of respondents said that they would want to build outdoor sets for Quantum Theater
33% of respondents said that they would want to entertain children at the Greater Pittsburgh Women's Shelter
17% of respondents said that they would want to teach ceramics at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts. 

Thanks for responding!  Don't forget to take this month's poll which is under Randie's message.
The GreenSheet… Read it, keep it, refer to it and pass it along to others to let them know about all the good work going on here at The Ellis School.