Here's What's Happening at Newell Elementary!

WE DID IT! Newell Elementary School came in #1 in NJ and #11 nationwide in the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge! Since our first year competing in 2011, Newell has placed in the Top 20 every year having read 14,304,403 reading minutes total!! Some interesting facts about this year's Reading Challenge: 2,735 schools nationwide competed from all 50 states, Washington DC and two US territories. Newell's total reading minutes of 1,544,624 equals 1,072 days!! 

Welcome back to school year 2018-19! We hope that you were able to accomplish all of the things that you set out to do this summer! We are excited to be back and have lots planned for out students this year. Should you have any questions regarding anything library, please contact me at! 

Congratulations to our December Junior Librarians: Julia Ciodyk, Hina Raza, Macy Galik, Andrew Sabbatini!!!

Our Junior Librarians for the month of November are Rachael Seinfeld, Luca Franzen, Samantha Lynch, and Edward Galik. Congratulations Junior Librarians!!!

Our Junior Librarians for the month of October are Dani Pegano, William Marshall, Ryan Heissler, and Adam Mischutin. Junior Librarians are chosen for their overall being devoted and crazy about the library!! Congratulations to this month's winners!!

Newell's top readers for the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge met in the library to receive their gift certificates for being top readers in the school! Each student received a $25 gift certificate, provided by the PTA to spend at the Scholastic Book Fair. In addition to the gift certificate, students were also the first to visit and shop for goodies at the Newell Scholastic Book Fair! 

Scholastic Reading Challenge Celebration

Newell Elementary celebrated its 6th year of participating in the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge, a program that helps to promote summer reading. Newell came in  8th worldwide and 1st in NJ, reading 1,582,783 minutes over the summer! To help motivate students, this year Principal, Kelly Huggins agreed to wear the Allentown High School's mascot uniform around the school during the day. Additionally, students were able to celebrate their successes by getting an additional recess during the day, along with water ices which were provided by the PTA. 

Read Across America Week Celebration
 February 27-March 3!

Newell Elementary celebrated their love of reading all week long! We began by celebrating Dr. Seuss! Each day students were able to dress up based on a different Dr. Seuss book. For example, on Tuesday we celebrated Fox in Socks by wearing our craziest socks, on Friday, we wore green in honor of Green Eggs and Ham. We also enjoyed a visit from the Cat in the Hat on Thursday. The Cat stopped by each of our PK-2 classrooms, reading to them as well as sharing a number of rhymes. The celebration continued with a visit from author Michael Dooling who discussed his many books as well as the process that he uses to write and illustrate his books. Overall Newell's love of reading was enjoyed all week long!! 

Coming Soon! Guy's Night Out!
February 7, 2017 6:30-8:30p 

It's just around the corner, our annual Guy's Night Out whereby the "Guys" in your child's life can bring them to the library  for a night of fun and discovery! Permission slips will go home with students on January 19th. Permission slips are also available on the Virtual Backpack. For more information please contact me at

We recently had our annual Scholastic Challenge Pizza Party whereby students from top classes per grade had a "reunion" with their teachers to celebrate having the highest minutes by class for their grade. Everyone loved the pizza and the chance to visit with "old classmates". Mrs. Huggins visited to let the students know how proud she was of them and their accomplishments. Students were challenged to see what they could do for next year's challenge!

We're very excited to announce the Newell Elementary 2016 Fall Scholastic Book Fair will be taking place on November 2nd, 3rd, and 4th in the vestibule near the gymnasium.  More information will be forthcoming later this week.

In anticipation of the Book Fair, Newell Elementary will be participating in a classroom-level coin drive from Wednesday, October 26th through November 1stIf you have loose coins hiding under the couch cushions and floor mats or in pants pockets and handbags, please put them to good use by donating to the school’s purchase of Lego Early Education Story Tales sets for our youngest learners in Pre-K and Kindergarten.  Our 1st through 4th graders already are benefiting from the Lego Story Starter Kits, creating and constructing stories in a fun and educational way!  All proceeds of the Coin Challenge will go toward this purchase and additional library resources.  Moreover, Scholastic will match all monies collected with donations to Toys for Tots and various children’s literacy campaigns.

Collection buckets will be placed in every classroom.  The classroom that collects the highest amount overall will be treated to a pizza party on a half day in January 2017 (to be determined).  Students in the two runner-up classes will receive prizes.  

If you have any questions, please contact Stacey Blecher at or 609.658.5434.


Kelly Huggins

It is my pleasure to introduce the Lego Story Starter Program! The StoryStarter Program provides students an opportunity to create stories through the use of Legos and the Lego Story VIsualizer Story app. The use of Legos provides students with a creative tool to design the different parts of a story. Legos Storystarter is also a wonderful tool to help students who may be reluctant readers and writers to more effectively create a story. The StoryStarter program will be introduced to our 2nd Grade first followed by 1st, 3rd, and 4th. Any questions, please feel free to contact me at

It's that time of year again.......the end of the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge! For the 5th year in a row, Newell Elementary School has placed in the Top 20 Worldwide! We read 2,606,028 minutes, coming in 8th place worldwide and 1st place in NJ! Congratulations to all of our students who helped us to achieve this great honor! 

Welcome back! I hope that everyone had a fantastic summer! We have lots planned for this year! Check back to see what's happening in the Newell Library!

Announcing Scholastic's Reading Road Trip!!
Newell Elementary School has been chosen from hundreds of schools in the NYC area to host the Scholastic Reading Road Trip!! Students and their families ages 0-12 can participate in a GIF and Selfie station along with the opportunity for author book signings, craft stations, promotional giveaways and character photo ops. Please join us for a super fun time on Monday, May 2 from 3:30-6:30 behind the NES Playground!!

Junior Librarians March 2016

Congratulations to our March 2016 Junior Librarians!!

Junior Librarians February 2016

See our Junior Librarians of the month to the right. Junior Librarians are chosen for their absolute crazy dedication to the library! Congratulations to our February winners!! 

Read Across America Celebration

On March 2, 2016, Dr. Seuss’ birthday (also known as Read Across America Day) was enjoyed by all at Newell Elementary School! Organized by Newell Librarian, Kimee Moore, supporting and promoting reading is very important at Newell Elementary and this was very clear during the festivities on this very important day.

Sponsored by the PTA, the celebration began with award winning author and illustrator, Henry Cole’s visit with grades Pre-K-4. Both students and staff alike were enthralled with his humorous presentation of the process it takes to create a book. While discussing many amusing anecdotes about his childhood, Mr. Cole wowed his audience by “drawing” the stories that he was talking about. Mr. Cole also had an innate sense of being able to understand what each grade would enjoy and changed each presentation just enough so that it was enjoyable by all.  

The students at Newell were also visited by the Cat in the Hat played by their very own Liz Polvere! The Cat visited grades Pre-K-2. While there, the Cat read various Dr. Seuss stories to each class, then answered any questions they may have. Next, each student received a special Dr. Seuss bookmark and then the Cat was on his way to the next class!

Here’s to looking forward to the next Read Across America Day at Newell, 2017!

Read Across America Day (Dr. Seuss' Birthday)

We will be celebrating Dr. Seuss' birthday on Wednesday, March 2nd! Award winning author/illustrator Henry Cole will be visiting our PreK-4 students to talk about the process of making a book from idea inception to illustration. Mr. Cole comes highly recommended and promises to provide a great experience for all of our students! 

Additionally, on Read Across America Day, we have a visit from the Cat in the Hat! The Cat visits all of our classrooms PreK-2. While there he reads them a story as well as answers any questions they may have. 

Read Across America Day looks to be very exciting and packed full of fun!!

Guy's Night Out

More than 97 families joined together to celebrate Guy's Night Out on February 10th! The Guys and their buddies enjoyed 4 centers during the evening. In the library they were able to read whatever book they wanted, wherever they wanted in addition to using the Destiny Library Symbaloo. Then, in the cafeteria there were two centers, one where the children got to make a craft keepsake, then in the other center they got to have fun working with their guys solving puzzles and reading funny jokes. Finally, they were able to work on the iPads with their guys doing everything from making art to exploring the earth. Many thanks go out to our helpers for the evening, Tara Silva, VIce Principal, Deb MCormick, Mareasa Strahle, Evie Bruno, Stephanie Williams and Armmel Kane who without whose help Guy's Night Out would have never happened! Thank you to everyone who joined us for a night of fun! 

Guy's Night Out

It's time for our 6th Annual Guy's Night Out!! On Wednesday, February 10th, 6:30-8:00p, Fathers, Stepfathers, Guardians, Grandfathers, Uncles, and Brothers of Newell Elementary School students (both boys and girls) are invited to explore the Newell Elementary School Library! There will be a lot of fun activities to enjoy with your children. Permission slips will be going home around January 22th, deadline to register February 3rd. Additional information available on Newell's Virtual Backpack or contact me at We look forward to seeing you there!  

Librarians of the Month-November 2015

Congratulations to our Librarians of the Month, November 2015! Librarians of the Month are chosen for their total, absolute, crazy, devotion to reading! 

1st Grade: Lorelei Harris
2nd Grade: Gianna Toto
3rd Grade: Scott Jordan
4th Grade: Samantha Derose

Scholastic Summer Challenge Pizza Party!

As part of our Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge celebration of placing 5th worldwide and 1st in New Jersey, we treated our top classes to a pizza party on Monday, November 23. Classes who read the most per grade met with their fellow students and teachers to celebrate their hard work and success! Our top classes by grade:

Pre-K Ms. Schleider
K        Ms. Bores
1st      Ms. Timmons
2nd    Ms. Marcantonio
3rd     Mr. Weiderspan
4th     Ms. George

Congratulations to all of our Redbird Readers! Great Job!!!

Librarians of the Month-October 2015

Congratulations to our October 2015 Librarians of the Month for showing commitment to reading and everything library!

1st Grade: AJ Lustgarten
2nd Grade: Dani Pegano
3rd Grade: John Lunghi
4th Grade: Matthew McCormick

Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Newell Elementary School rocked when it came to the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge! Once again we've placed in the Top 20 schools in the world for the 4th YEAR IN A ROW coming in  6th in the world and 1st in New Jersey. That's with over 6,220 schools competing!

Newell celebrated its' successes on Monday, September 28th with a school-wide Reading Rally. As part of the challenge, Newell’s principal, Kelly Huggins, sweetened the deal by promising the students that she would cut her hair if they met their reading goals! Students could not pass that opportunity and read fervently ultimately more than meeting their reading goals. True to her word, Mrs. Huggins very courageously cut her hair during the celebration for all the students to see and donated it to Locks of Love.

During the Reading Challenge celebration, students also participated in games and the very first Newell Flash Mob dance where the whole school participated in the Nae Nae Dance.

Students were also treated to an inflatable obstacle course which they enjoyed during their recess time; top readers got unlimited time on the course. Additional prizes for the students were provided by Newell’s Parent Teacher Association who gave top readers $25 gift certificates to be used at the Scholastic Book Fair as well as water ices and water during their time on the obstacle course. Colonial Bowling provided gift cards for the top readers as well as goodie bags for the whole school! Top classes per grade will also be treated to a pizza party. 

It's That Time of Year Again!

Hello School Year 2015-16! I'm sure you all feel as I do.....where did the summer go? I hope that you were able to complete your "to do" list as well as pack in a lot of fun. For me, it was a Top Ten summer!

Getting back to business, the last time we checked our status for the Summer Reading Challenge, Newell was in the Top 10 with over 2.5 million reading minutes. Our students have done a phenomenal job! We are so proud of them! The Challenge ends Friday, September 4th, so make sure that your children get in all of their reading minutes and record them online at Any problems, please contact me at

There is a lot to look forward to this year in the Newell Library! We will be having our annual Guy's Night Out and author visit for Dr. Seuss' Read Across America Day. We will also be holding a Reading Auction for our 3rd and 4th Grade students. This will be an opportunity for your student to earn some "Newell" cash and redeem it for some great prizes! More info to follow..... 

Stay tuned for more information regarding the happenings in the Newell Library! If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me at the email address listed above.

Summer Reading Challenge Kick-Off!

On Friday, May 1, Newell Elementary kicked off their 4th annual Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge! Students met in the gym where they were told what the new goals were for the 2015 year. If the students read 2 million minutes, top readers will get to enjoy a 77 ft inflatable obstacle course. If students read 2.5 million minutes they will get to participate in a water balloon challenge. Finally, if students read 3.2 million minutes, our school principal, Mrs. Huggins has agreed to cut her hair and donate it to Locks of Love as well as get slimed by our top readers. Additional prizes include pizza parties for the top classes as well as Scholastic Gift Certificates for the top readers. Keep track of our progress at to the bottom and type in the school name to see how many minutes we have read!!

Library Yearly Closing

We will be closing the Newell Elementary Library on Friday, May 22 to do the yearly inventory and maintenance. Students will need to have all of their library books back by Friday, May 29. Any questions, please contact me at

Young Librarian of the Month

To be chosen as a Young Librarian, a student must show enthusiasm and commitment to reading and information literacy. Our April 2015 Young Librarians are Avery Gower, Sarah Smith, Samantha Allen, Abigail Barber.....please join me in congratulating them!! 

Guy's Night Out

Our 5th Annual Guy's Night Out went off without a hitch! On Tuesday, February 3, almost 100 "Guys" and their children participated in the festivities. Activities were broken into 4 centers: library, iPad activities, a craft activity and a word activity. As the children and their "Guys" cycled through each of the centers, they not only enjoyed the activity, but were also able to enjoy some bonding time with the "Guy" in their lives. Volunteers Debbie MCormick, Mareasa Strahle, and  Evie Bruno kept things running smoothly, making sure that everyone had what they needed to make sure the night ran smoothly. Please see photos to the right.

Author Visit: Steve Swinburne

Newell Elementary students had a great time during author Steve Swinburne's visit. Mr. Swinburne, author and wildlife conservationist, spoke to Grades Pre-K-4 about his travels around the world researching information about his books. He's written books on everything from dolphins to sloths and discussed with the students his most recent travels to St Kitt to study the life of sea turtles of which he most recently wrote about. Mr. Swinburne's sense of humor along with his obvious knowledge of the subject came through glowingly as all of the students enjoyed his presentations. Photo to the right.

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