The Brooklyn New School is committed to academic and personal success for all students. We believe that children are creators of meaning. They are naturally thoughtful and curious, and they work to gain understanding of the world they inhabit. When the adults who care for children foster this effort, children become life-long learners.

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Weekly Letter: April 8, 2014

Dear Families:

So what’s all the fuss about?  Why did faculty and parents get out the protest signs and march around PS 321 and PS 29 last Friday morning?  

And what is happening in District 2 on Friday, April 11th at 8:00 AM?  Why, it’s another protest. This one is being organized by none other than the principals of schools in District 2.  Their letter to the community says, “The tests seem not to be particularly well-aligned with the Common Core Learning Standards; the questions are poorly constructed and often ambiguous; the tests themselves are embargoed and only a handful of select questions will be released next year; teachers are not permitted to use (or even discuss) the questions or the results to inform their teaching; students and families receive little or no specific feedback; this year, there were product placements (i.e., Nike, Barbie) woven through some exams.”  These principals write that their students were, “well prepared for the rigor and high expectations of the Common Core and our schools have worked hard for several years to adjust our curriculum and teaching to support students in meeting those expectations.”  

Weekly Letter - March 27, 2014

Testing Q&A Poster

Dear Families:

On Tuesday afternoon, a group of children and parents gathered to receive the Green Flag Award for conserving natural resources and integrating environmental education into the curriculum.  This was presented  by the National Wildlife Federation’s Eco-Schools USA program. As well, the NYC DOE Sustainability Initiative gave us a $5,000 grant in recognition of our achievements and to support us in expanding our sustainability programs.   We celebrated this honor by hosting a small ceremony in which BNS children shared our accomplishments with visitors.  Our visitors included City Councilman Brad Lander and reporters from News12, as well as Emily Fano from the National Wildlife Federation’s Eco-Schools USA.

Weekly Letter - March 20, 2014

Testing Q&A Poster

Dear Families:

It has been in the news and discussed on the playground.  The subject of testing is in the air.  In many a school, anxiety is increasing as children realize how close they are to the six days for which they have been preparing all year.   Some look forward to the challenge while others worry about not being smart enough or not pleasing their parents and teachers.

Parent Workshop Series

with a focus on early childhood only: Grades K, 1 and 2

Eat Drink Dance Shop Poster

AppleFest Saturday, Oct. 19 11am - 4pm (large yard -- rain or shine)


AppleFest Food(s)

chili, cotton candy, grilled hot dogs, sandwich bar, fresh juice bar, waffles, hot pretzels, and pies/cakes

AppleFest Arts & Crafts
super hero masking making, paint a man, hair painting, Zombie fashion show, spin art, pumpkin decorating and more...

AppleFest Flea market
kid bikes, adult kids, ice skates, jogging strollers, and more

Volunteers needed for 30 min - 1 hour shifts, sign up here>>

Anna's weekly letter to BNS Families

Dear Families:


Many of you joined me last night for the District 15 Community Education Council at 7:00 at MS 51.  For those who weren’t able to be there, I include here the transcript of my words:


As we reflect on the new state test results, we need to ask “Why?”  Rather than guessing, I checked out the United States Department of Education’s website where I found frequently asked questions.  One was, “How does testing help teachers?”  We are told: “Teachers gain a great deal of information about the performance of individual students that enables them to meet the particular needs of every child.”

Movie Night: Friday, Sept. 20 (at approx 6:30pm)

Eat Drink Dance Shop Poster

  • Where: Big Yard -- outdoor movie (Rain location: gym)
  • What: Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit
  • What to bring: kids, blanket, chairs, and friends!  Suggested donation $10 a family.
  • Food: $5 a plate

Welcome and Welcome Back from Principal Anna Allanbrook

From Anna's summer letter to families:

I am just back from a trip to Sweden in which I had the opportunity to visit the HallonEtt preschools in Jönköping, Sweden.  This visit echoed much of what I saw when I went to the Reggio Emilia schools in Italy last October.  This time I was joined by fifth grade teacher, Antoinette Byam, and paraprofessional, Doug Elsass.  As with my visit to Italy, I was struck by how much the Swedish government recognizes the need to fund and support programs for children as young as one year old.  I was also taken with the values that are emphasized by the Swedes. Consider this sentence from the HallonEtt website: “We want our nursery to be a place where you feel welcome, where you are involved, where children feel that they can trust each other and themselves, and where children experience joy and optimism so that they want to go to school everyday and explore together with friends, big and small.  We offer an inspiring and changing environment that invites creativity, experimentation, play and learning.” And  “We are committed to our school constantly evolving, changing, improving and being renewed. We want our school to be characterized by optimism, curiosity, imagination, learning and playfulness.”

New (and old) Families Potluck Picnic

Tuesday, September 3rd

5 - 7 pm

in Prospect Park, at the Tennis House Lawn
F or G train to 7th Ave. Enter at 9th Street, cross the Park Drive, and the Tennis House Lawn will be on your left.

Map of Prospect Park

Rain location: BNS cafeteria, same date/time

Join us to meet new friends and rekindle friendships from last year. Bring a dish or drinks to share and stuff to play with. The PTA will supply paper goods.

If you have a folding picnic table, let Amy S. know at We need a couple.

Looking forward to seeing you!

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