TNN • Tiger News Network • 19 January 2018

Dear Fellow Parents,

Thank you to all who volunteered this past fall for our TAPA events and provided a helping hand in making each one a success! As we begin preparations for our spring events, we would like to share a link to the volunteer opportunities available to you. As parent volunteers we invite and encourage you to get involved.

Among the spring events is the Senior All-Night Party. This is an annual tradition for the graduating class held on the evening of commencement to bring the seniors together one last time. The event will be held on The Spirit of Boston and is sponsored and run by TAPA volunteers. We would like to see this event managed by both junior and senior parent volunteers, but we encourage parents of juniors to lead the charge so parents of seniors can focus on their graduates. In addition to the All-Night Party, we are also looking for volunteers for the Senior Class Dinner aka “The Last Hurrah!”, the Hypnotist Show, and the Sophomore Gala.

If you are interested in helping out with these events or others please sign up using this link.

We also hope you will take advantage of the TAPA-sponsored programming we have coming up!  Please make sure to read this week’s TNN for all the pertinent dates and information.

Last, but certainly not least, we would love to see you all at the Thayer Academy Auction. This event will be held at Granite Links Golf Club on Friday, March 2, 2018 and tickets are on sale now.  Please click this link to purchase tickets, sponsor the event, advertise in the Auction program, or donate an auction prize.

We invite you to get involved as a volunteer, to attend our programming, and to support our efforts! Enjoy the remainder of the school year and never hesitate to reach out with your ideas and input.

Warm Regards,

Kelly Swaney, President P '20

Barb Vonnegut, Vice President P '21

Tricia St. Jean, Treasurer P '17, '20, '21

Michelle Flaherty, Secretary P '19

Deanna Abrams, MS President P '20, '22

Susan Donovan, MS Vice President P '22     

Reedy Kream, MS Secretary P '17, '21, '23

Jennifer Havlicek, Volunteer Coordinator P '18, '21, '21

Maureen Hayes, Volunteer Coordinator P '21, '24

Julie Gilbert, Special Projects Coordinator P '17, '21

To access a specific section in the TNN click below:

Basketball, Varsity Girls  Saturday, Jan. 20 @ Thayer Memorial Gym, v. Kents Hill School @ 4pm. Go Tigers! See upcoming games and meets for Thayer teams by clicking here on the Athletics page.

The Lost & Found bin is outside the campus store and will be there from Friday, 1/19- Wednesday, 1/24.  Please stop by anytime or have your child look for anything that might be "lost." Any items that aren't claimed by Jan. 25 will be donated.

TNN Timing- Thank you for responding to our survey. Sixty-four families responded and the majority of respondents would like the delivery day to remain the same. We greatly appreciate your feedback!

Jan. 20,  Science! Book Fair, 11am-2pm, Braintree Barnes & Noble. There will be three presentations from experts in different scientific fields. Our presenters include Aly Richardson, Boston Museum of Science, Fari Khalili, Thayer Science Faculty and Kathleen Regan, Naturalist from Blue Hills Trailside Museum. Click here to view the speaker schedule.  The book fair has a science theme to celebrate the new Middle School Collaborative Design Lab and help raise funds to update the science and S.T.E.M. section of the Middle School Library. Using a book fair voucher you can purchase ANY item in the store and a portion of the sale will be contributed to the Thayer Middle School Library. Click here to download and print a book fair voucher.

Jan. 21, Cheer on the TA Trivia Team when they take on Hingham on WGBH's High School Quiz Show! Tickets are free and can be reserved here

Jan. 23 & Jan. 25, Thayer Academy Winter Concerts, Hale Theater, CFA, 7-8:45pm. Upper and Middle School. All are welcome, no tickets necessary. For the complete schedule of what classes play on what day, click here

​​​​​​RESCHEDULED Tuesday, January 23rd - Special TAPA Coffee and Presentation by Joani Geltman, MSW - 8-10 am, Tiger's Den (Second Floor of the Cahall Building) -ALL Thayer parents are invited to attend! -  Joani Geltman is a child development and parenting expert, and will focus her presentation on topics such as how the brain affects your teen’s behavior, how to “argue” with your teen, keeping your teen safe as they explore teen life, and “teen-proofing” your home as well as “cell-proofing” your teen. This presentation is open to ALL Thayer parents - Middle and Upper Schools. You don't want to miss this program!

Jan. 25, Reception for Faculty Art Show, 3:30-5:30pm. Thayer Gallery. Free, open to all. The show will run until Feb. 2

Jan. 26 - 21st Annual Valicenti Cup - beginning at 4:15 pm at the Warrior Ice Arena located at 90 Guest Street, Boston - Please share your response!  2018 marks the first time girls varsity team will take the ice for Valicenti Cup! At the conclusion of the girls game vs. Dexter Southfield, the girls Valicenti Cup MVP will be awarded. In Valicenti Cup tradition, the boys varsity team will play St. Sebastian's.  Following the boys game, the tenth annual Robert H. Ferriter '73 Cup will be given to the boys Valicenti Cup Game MVP, and the Valicenti Cup will go to the winner of the St. Sebastian's/Thayer game.

4:15pm Girls Varsity Hockey Game (vs. Dexter Southfield)
5pm Reception
6pm Boys Varsity Hockey Game (vs. St. Sebastian's)
8 - 10pm Public Skate – "Rock n' Skate"
Skate on the same ice as the Boston Bruins!
$5 skate rental charge and $10 admission fee for the public skate – a portion of the evening's public skate sales will be donated to Thayer.

If you plan to attend the Valicenti Cup, please send your RSVP to Lesley Snyder by today, January 19.

In addition, the Arthur T. Valicenti Jr. '51 Fund was created to provide financial assistance to a Thayer student who demonstrates a commitment to academics, athletics, and sportsmanship both on and off the playing field.  This fund is now valued at over $200,000 because of the support of many in our community. If you would like to contribute to the Arthur T. Valicenti Jr. '51 Fund, please click here and make your designation.

Feb. 1- Reminder from the Admissions Office: Admission and financial aid applications for NEW students are due Feb 1.

Feb. 1 - Second Annual Bailey King Author Event ~ Cocktails & Conversation with Dominic Tierney - 6:00-8:30 pm, Southworth Library - Open to entire Thayer community!  
Dominic Tierney, professor, author, and contributing editor at, will explore how our perceptions of international issues—from terrorism to North Korea to global warming— are often based on illusions. Powerful psychological biases like overconfidence and the negativity bias can skew the beliefs of the public and leaders across the political spectrum, with dramatic consequences. Professor Tierney believes that wise and active citizenship starts with self-awareness of our own human psychology. As part of the author series, Tierney will be on campus for several days, speaking to senior history and English classes about international relations and his work as writer and columnist in these politically charged and complex times.  RSVP to Lesley Snyder.

Feb. 2 - Pink Out Game - 6:00 pm  Come cheer on the Girls Varsity Basketball team in Memorial Gym - all members of the Thayer community are invited!  Special T-shirts will be on sale at school during the week of Jan. 29 with 50% of proceeds donated to the American Cancer Society.   Thayer’s Parent Athletic Council will sponsor drinks and pizza prior to the game.  Mark you calendars - you won’t want to miss this fun event!

Feb. 2 - Hypnotist Show, 8-9:30 pm in the CFA's Hale Theater -  Comedian-hypnotist Jim Spinnato ( returns for his annual show in the Hale Theater! Jim has been coming to Thayer for many years, and while his show is pure entertainment for the entire Thayer community, only seniors have the opportunity to be hypnotized on stage. All students are welcome to attend, and in spite of what your children might tell you, many parents also attend each year, so please know that you are welcome to come. Tickets are $10.00 and may be purchased online via (search Hypnotist & Comedian Jim Spinnato).

Feb. 3--Boston Stair Climb, For Parents, Students, Faculty, Friends of Thayer, Please consider joining Team Thayer in the American Lung Association’s FIGHT FOR AIR CLIMB on February 3 at One Boston Place! This is a 41-story (that’s 82 flights or 789 steps!) stair climb that raises funds for life-saving education, research, and advocacy so we can beat lung disease. For more information, click hereContact Debbie Siegel with questions at

Feb. 5 - Third Annual Founders Day: A Day of Giving - All Day Event!
Mark your calendars for Monday, February 5th for Founders Day: A Day of Giving, Thayer's one-day, community-wide celebration of our history and mission in support of the Thayer Annual Giving Campaign.  This year, we have received a $50,000 Challenge gift from an anonymous donor, and have set a goal of 1,000 gifts for this event.  If 1,000 gifts are received then $50,000 will be unlocked to benefit Thayer's amazing students, faculty, and community as a whole.  For each donor who makes a gift, of any amount, we will receive $50 from our anonymous donor, up to a maximum of $50,000.

We need your help to make this day a success!

Volunteer - Volunteers are critical to the success of this one-day celebration.  With your help, we will conduct outreach to Thayer community members through phone calls, emails and social media.  We will also need volunteers to sign thank you cards to our Founders Day donors.  Please consider participating in this high-spirited day.  We will use the Tiger's Den as our volunteer command center on February 5th.  Email Brad Peterson to volunteer!

Give - If you would like to help us get a head start on reaching our goal of 1,000 gifts.  Click here to give!  (Each gift, of any amount, will unlock $50 from our anonymous donor!)

Feb. 6 - "If They Had Known" Documentary Screening - 7-8pm (7:00-7:30 screening followed by a panel discussion) CFA, Free, Open to all - “If They Had Known” is a documentary film that focuses on the risks of the current party culture. It is not a film about addiction or substance abuse. It addresses the risks of recreationally mixing prescription drugs with alcohol. Our kids live in a world with too many options. The common trend of experimenting with prescription drugs and alcohol is unfortunately very common in high schools and college campuses across the country and is resulting in tragic accidents. This screening will be followed by a panel discussion with Thayer’s Director of Counseling, Jess Matzkin, LICSW, Dr. Mark Vonnegut P ’21 and Lt. Michael Want P ’22, Braintree Police Department. (The Upper School will have a screening for the students on Friday, February 2nd during the school day.)

Monday Meeting: Music Concert Preview

Jan. 24, Senior Project Proposals Due. To all senior parents, your senior should be preparing their paper and finalizing their project plans.  If you have any questions, please direct your child to see Ms. King or feel free to send Ms. King an email at

Jan. 27, First Habitat for Humanity Build for Upper School Students. If your child is interested, have them contact Ms. Lombardi

Students Shoulder-to-Shoulder: Applications Are Open! Students Shoulder-to-Shoulder is now accepting applications for its 2018 summer courses.  You can find information about the 10 courses offered by SStS here, and you may submit your online application by visiting  Through Thayer's membership in SStS's Global Schools Coalition, at least one spot in each of the 10 SStS courses is reserved for a Thayer student as long as applications are submitted by February 15.  Programs can fill up fast, though, so do not procrastinate!  If you have any questions, contact Ms. Archabal

Important concert information for MS Chorus & Ensembles:

What to wear - Mr. Alosa Ensemble - black

Mr. Skop Ensemble - Black & Orange

MS Chorus - Black pants/skirt; white top/shirt; boys must wear Thayer tie (Mrs. B can provide)

Evening concerts in CFA - Hale Theater - Report time for all MS groups 6:15

There will be a daytime performance of all three MS performing groups for MS student & faculty on Weds Jan 24 @10:15am in CFA. Parents are invited to attend.

Click here for important dates for students participating in the Winter play "Fools."

The TAMS Science Cafe is a program that brings in female scientists to talk with any interested Middle School students during a "lunch bunch". These will take place during lunch on the scheduled days; students would eat their lunch either in the Tiger's Den or PA Conference room while the scientist gives their presentation. The hope is to celebrate female scientists while introducing students to various STEM careers. Students will be able to sign up on a sheet on Ms. Young's classroom door (room 205) when they get back from break. Click here for the schedule.

Jan. 29, 3:45-4:45, Hale Learning Center Snack & Study: MacBook Organization. Room 105. Your child will learn how to properly create, save, store, and organize their documents and assignments on their MacBook.  If they lose important documents, have to redo work they've already done, or spend too much time looking for notes, assignments, or papers, this Snack and Study will solve those issues.   Click here to sign up.  Please email Maryann Shafter ( with any questions.

Jan. 31 - Coffee with Carson sponsored by TAPA @ 8:15 am in the Middle School Library:  Please join Middle School Director Carson Smith for coffee and conversation. John Tummon, Freedom from Chemical Dependency Educator, will present as Thayer observes January's Freedom From Chemical Dependency Week.  

Auction: Friday, March 2, 2018 - Thayer Academy Auction 2018 -Tickets are on sale now!

The next committee meeting is Tuesday, January 25th at 8:30 am in the Tiger's Den.

Calling on all Thayer families for your support with this year’s Auction! Looking for Sponsors and ­Advertisements in our auction catalog! The deadline is Friday, February 16!!! Our dynamic auction committee is busy putting together this exciting event for the Thayer community!  Please mark your calendars for Friday, March 2, 2018.

We are looking for families who would like to be a Sponsor at this year’s Auction. We have wonderful sponsorship opportunities outlined for you. Sponsors are critical to the success of the Auction. These significant funds allow more opportunities for Thayer’s faculty to continue growing, learning, and sharing with our students. Please click here to learn about the many sponsorship levels available.

In addition, we are looking for anyone who would like to provide an Advertisement in our auction booklet. You may advertise your business, congratulate your child’s sports team, or promote whatever your imagination suggests. We have full-and half-size pages available in our catalog, and your logo will be visible on all Auction-related digital media the minute you sign up. Please click here to advertise in the Auction Catalog.

And we are looking for donations of Auction items!  At Auctions in the past, the Thayer community has delighted in wonderful weekend getaway trips, sporting and concert tickets, autographed sports memorabilia, golf packages--to name a few! We are also in need of items such as gift certificates from restaurants, local merchants, or movie theaters.  Please click here to donate an Auction item.  If you have any questions about donating an auction item, please contact our Acquisitions Co-chairs, Jodi Petrucelli P '18, '21 or Karen Klaff P '21.

Jan. 26 - PIN (Parents' Independent School Network) Annual Meeting/Head of School panel, hosted by Concord Academy (Ransome Room) - 9:30 - 11:30 am Registration and coffee begins at 9:00 am and the meeting will begin promptly at 9:30 am. The panelists are Peter Hutton (Beaver Country Day School), Todd Bland (Milton Academy), Greg Schneider (Berwick Academy) and Sarah Yeh (Concord Academy). Broadly the topic is "Innovative Curriculum: Preparing Kids for the Future." However, the panel discussion will begin by having each panelist discuss one of the following "sub-topics" for 10 minutes. 

  • Innovation has become a "buzzword" that schools are emphasizing more and more. Parents often equate innovation with technology. What, to you, is the essence of innovation? Is it just technology, or how does innovation go beyond technology? 
  • How would you define a 21st century student? What does one look like when they enter a classroom in 9th grade and what do you hope they will look like when they graduate? What skills sets or character traits do you hope to achieve through innovative curriculum? 
  • Describe classroom trends or shifts in teaching because of innovative curriculum. For example, the "flip classroom" or that students do less handwriting and more typing. What are the pros and cons of more innovation and less traditional methods? 
  • What world do the kids need to be prepared for? What do you think a student needs in order to thrive in the 21st Century? How does specific innovative curriculum help you prepare students? Preparing students to succeed and thrive after high school requires teaching not just content knowledge but also transferable skills and dispositions that enable students to take responsibility for their own lives and to operate within a greater social context. 

 A moderatorwill ask some follow up questions, and then allow parents a chance to ask questions as well. We will conclude between 11:15-11:30 am. The meeting will take place in the Ransome Room. Best parking is the public lot off of Keyes Road (behind the Bank of America off of Main Street) or using the metered spaces on Main Street.

Save the Dates for TAPA's Spring Programming:

Wednesday, April 4, 2018 - 8:15 AM - Coffee with Highley Thompson (US) – CFA

Thursday, April 12, 2018 - 7 - 9 PM - Ryan Klingensmith – CFA Ryan is a Licensed Professional and Nationally Certified Counselor and Founder of Shape the Sky. He will be speaking to parents about teen use and misuse of technology, guiding and educating teens and the effect of social media culture on teens in schools.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018 - 8:15 AM - Coffee with Carson Smith (MS) MS Library

Don't forget to follow us on social! You don't need to download any apps to see pictures and videos of what's happening all over campus every day. Simply click on the icons below to access Thayer's official Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.



Click on the book or article titles for the book review or full article.

Barbara Browne, Buildings & Grounds, The Last Days of Night, Graham Moore

Theresa Jay, Director of Technology, What To Do When Machines Do Everything: How to Get Ahead in a World of AI, Algorithms, Bots, and Big Data, Malcolm Frank, Paul Roehrig, and Ben Pring


Questions about TNN? Suggestions? Please email