I sat in a Math class recently, observing students be successful, collaborative, and positive with one another.  They were diving into Math concepts that stretched their thinking and supported each other in the work. I was overcome with a sense of gratitude for the ways in which teachers at this school spend countless extra hours planning multiple lessons for the same hour of instruction.  Using the workshop model, teachers group students by their strengths and needs, and have them rotate through centers to work on different skills in each center. This means that teachers plan often three to four different lessons for each group’s rotations as well as often plan a different set of activities for each group, based upon their learning needs. The groupings are fluid and responsive to ongoing data collection and observations of the students so that the work is timely, relevant, and helpful.

As I observed this lesson, I thought about the inner workings of our classrooms and the backstage thinking behind the learning activities and realized that it would be good to offer a glimpse into the thoughtful work of our teachers. This week, as you drop your child off at school or pick them up at the end of the day, you might want to consider thanking their teachers for their thoughtful planning for your child’s education. They truly do spend the extra time and effort to make sure that every student is Known, Loved, and Inspired.

Happy Week 9, everyone!

–Dr. Shyla.


This Week:

          • Friday, November 1 — Winter Coat Swap
          • Friday, November 1 — Middle School Dance

Mark Your Calendars:

          • Monday, November 4 — No School (Staff Professional Development)
          • Friday, November 8 — Student Voice Association Election
          • Friday, November 15–Hearing & Vision Screening, grades K, 1, and 8

Reminder:  City Neighbors Hamilton does not celebrate Halloween.  Please do not send your children to school in costume on October 31.  Thank you!


Student Voice Association Elections

We are excited to announce that the Student Voice Association (SVA) elections are about to begin! Any student, grades 3-8 can run for a position on the SVA.  We have one classroom representative for each grade as well as four leadership roles that constitute “The Core” of the SVA. All positions are open for elections. We hope that your child would like to help advocate for new initiatives at our school and in our community!

Instead of President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer, the leadership team is called “The Core.” Roles include:

  • Facilitator — Collects ideas from students and facilitates meetings
  • Promoter — Gets support from Board, faculty, and community with new initiatives. This position also serves as the student representative on the CNH Board and will attend Board meetings the second Tuesday of every month, 6:00-7:30. 
  • Organizer — Leads the students in making new initiatives happen. 
  • Member-at-Large – Supports The Core in collecting student opinion and enacting initiatives

 Timeline for elections:

  • Monday, October 28, 11:00-11:30 — Interest Meeting in the Cafe Chill Room. 
  • Tuesday, October 29, by 3:30 — Student submit their “Intent to Run” form to the Main Office
  • Wednesday, October 30-Friday November 8 — Hang signs for student campaigns
  • Friday, November 8 — Special Election All-School — Speeches for The Core positions as well as voting for all positions. (Please note that campaigning and speeches for Classroom Representatives is limited to the classroom. Those running for Classroom Representative will not be giving their speech at All-School.)


Open Mic!

Open Mics will be held on November 15 and November 22.  Permission slips are required for student participation and are due by Friday, 11/1 (no permission slips will be accepted after 11/1).

Extra copies of permission slips are in the front office. If you have questions, contact Ms. Novak,

Open Mic Poster


Middle School Dance, November 1

— Volunteers Needed —

Earn Family Participation Hours by helping to decorate, pick up pizza, chaperone the dance, or clean up afterward.  No matter the age of your child, you can still support the Middle School Dance and earn your hours.  

Click HERE if you would like to volunteer for any part of the evening. Hope to see you there!



The DoSE Corner — A message from Ms. Rashida

City Neighbors Basketball Open Gym:  We are excited to provide an opportunity for middle-school students to participate in basketball open gym on Wednesdays, 2:30-4:30pm, in conjunction with the high school! In order for students to participate, they turn in a complete and signed liability waiver, and they must sign up on the sign up sheet each week. They can check in with me for both the waiver and the sign-in sheet.

Lunch Bunch with Ms. Rashida: Students have been asking every day when they can have lunch with me. In order to keep it organize, they can sign up for a lunch bunch using the lunch bunch sign up sheet located in my room. Lunch bunches will only take place on Thursdays.

I can be reached at


Winter Coat Swap — Friday, November 1


It’s starting to get cold outside! Please consider donating new or gently used coats, hats, scarves, and gloves for us to share with our friends at CNH. 

By donating a coat, your child will be able to participate in the Coat Swap on November 1 — Students will be able to “shop” the coats and pick one that they would like to wear this year! Even if you don’t want your child to participate in the coat swap, please consider donating a coat to help keep another child warm this winter.

We will keep the hats, scarves, and gloves for students to use during recess or if they do not have some of their own.

All donations will be collected in the Main Office.


Thanksgiving Food Drive

Mr. Smith’s 6th grade advisory is holding its annual food drive. It begins Monday, October 28 and ends Friday, November 15. Any items not used for the Thanksgiving baskets will be donated to a local food pantry or shelter.

All non-perishable food items are welcome. Please do not send anything that is expired or that needs to be frozen or refrigerated.

In order to make Thanksgiving baskets, we are requesting the following items be brought in by each grade:

K, 3rd, 6th: stuffing and canned vegetables (green beans, corn, carrots),

1st, 4th, 7th: boxed potatoes regular or sweet, canned fruit (cranberries/apple sauce) and treats/snacks (fruit snacks, pretzels, cookies)

2nd, 5th, 8th: gravy, soup, and noodles or rice (mac and cheese)

In order to purchase a turkey for each sponsored family, we will also be collecting money. Each dollar will equal 2 items from your homeroom/grade level!  All donated items should be given to homeroom teachers, or advisors—they will be collected by Mr. Smith’s advisory daily.

As always, we will still hold a pancake and turkey sausage breakfast for the grade level that brings in the most items.

Thank you!


Bake Sale to Support 8th Grade!


Enrollment Season Open for 2020-21!

We are now accepting applications from new families for 2020-21 inclusion in the enrollment lottery through 3 PM on Wednesday, February 5.  Please share this information with anyone who may be interested.

We request that CN staff and current families submit sibling applications by Monday, January 27, 2020 so we can determine how many available seats we will have open when we conduct our lottery.  Applications are available in the office or on our website.  You can submit them to the office directly or by scanning and emailing to

Any questions about enrollment for 2020-21?  Contact Stephanie at


Arts/PE Integration and Class Blog

Introducing the Arts/PE Integration and Class Photo Blog. We are excited to share photos of the great work happing in physical education, dance and visual art classes. Check out the photoblog on Mondays to see highlights from the previous week.


Spare Clothing Needed

We keep a collection of plain t-shirts, sweatshirts, and sweatpants in the office in case someone slips in the mud, spills something on themselves, or needs a change of clothing for any reason during the day. We also keep a collection of belts in case someone needs one.

Please consider donating new or gently used children and adult-sized clothing (for kindergarten through 8th-grade students to wear). 

All donations will be collected in the Main Office.



Please Share!


Symposium 2019

Every year in October, the staff from all City Neighbors schools come together for an inspirational professional development day of collaboration and learning.  This year was no exception.  The day began with a rousing opening!   Check it out here!: symposium 2019 opening


Registration and Requests for Workshops Open!



Wanna Meet with Dr. Shyla or Ms. Rashida?

You are invited to make an appointment to meet with either of us, at your convenience, using our appointment calendar. Be sure to add the topic/agenda of our meeting in the Notes section, so that we are prepared for the meeting. We look forward to speaking with you. 


Here is the link to Shyla’s Appointment Calendar.


Here is the link to Rashida’s Appointment Calendar.