Black History Month, PJ Day, Read-a-thon, Food Drive, and more!!!!
Sun, Feb 7 12:38pm
Hello Aiken families!  We hope you all enjoyed a safe and snowy weekend!  This week's E-blast is FULL of important updates and information!  
PJ DAY - 2/12 - Organized by Aiken's Second Graders
Help the second grade show LOVE by donating $1 or more for children in the Hartford area. Bring in $1 to wear your pajamas on February 12th. All money will go towards purchasing masks for children at The South Park Inn, The Bridge, and masks for families at Loaves & Fishes. If you would like to make a contactless donation of any amount please Venmo @Abiah-Ruel

Super Bowl Food Drive **EXTENDED TO WEDNESDAY  2/10**

Due to the snow days we will be extending the food drive until Wednesday 2/10!  Don't forget to grab some extra non-perishable food items while you shop for Super Bowl snacks!!  


Between Monday, February 1 and Wednesday, February 10, 2021, bring in any of the following food items and place it in the box located under the football team you are rooting for:

· Canned fruit/apple sauce

· Cold cereal (non-sugary kind)

· Tuna & canned meats

· Rice and rice mixes

· Baked beans & canned vegetables

· Pasta sauce & spaghetti

· Peanut butter & jelly

· Baking mixes

· Granola bars & cookies

· Macaroni & cheese

Vote for the team you want to win the Super Bowl: Kansas City Chiefs or Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Who will get the most votes? Who will win the Super Bowl? Thanks for being a great sports fan and supporting this “Souper” Super Bowl Drive.




Wear any one of your favorite sports team’s jersey or t-shirt on the Monday after the Super Bowl to show your Aiken Spirit! Email with any questions.

Thank You!!!


Aiken Family Cookbook

 Calling all Aiken families!! Do you have a favorite family recipe? We want to try it! Please fill out the form below for your chance to be in the first Aiken Community Cookbook. Pictures are welcome and encouraged. Please submit the  attached form back to by Monday, February 15th. Cookbook sales will begin in March. 


PTO Read-A-Thon February 1st-February 29th
The PTO is excited to run a Read-a-thon supporting the Tyler Family during the Month of February.  50% of proceeds will go directly to the Tyler Family and the other 50% will go to the PTO.  Please support our innovative approach to fundraising by combining our love of reading while embracing the importance of giving back to our community.  Our hope is that each child will read at least 20 minutes per school night.  The class with the most minutes read per student will win a class movie party! 
You can use this link to register for the read-a-thon.
  Go ahead and get your student set up, but don't forget that we are not entering minutes read until February 1st!  To learn more about the read-a-thon, please see the attached parent letter. 

Black History Month

We are so happy to share how we are celebrating Black History Month!  We would like to highlight and share some amazing literature you and your family can enjoy!


Where is our historian to give us our side? To teach our people our own history?” asks Afro-Puerto Rican Arturo Schomburg on the first page of this beautifully illustrated picture book,
Schomburg: The Man Who Built a Library.

Schomburg’s 5th-grade teacher had told him “Africa’s sons and daughters had no history, no heroes worth noting.”

Schomburg dedicated his life to ensuring that future generations would learn of Africa and African Americans’ powerful heritage. He set out to write, research, and collect the stories that chronicled the Black history of the Diaspora. Filling every nook and cranny of his family home in Harlem, his collection was eventually donated to the now famous Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York.

ISBN: 9780763680466 | Published by Candlewick Press

The book is also available in Spanish, Schomburg: El Hombre Que Creó Una Biblioteca.

Related Resources
Arturo Alfonso Schomburg (photo) | Zinn Education Project

Jan. 24, 1874: Arturo Alfonso Schomburg Born (click this link)

Arturo Alfonso Schomburg, bibliophile, collector, writer, who spent his life championing Black history.


More Teaching Resources

Explore by Time Period | Zinn Education Project
Explore by Theme | Zinn Education Project
This Day in History Series | Zinn Education ProjectIf We Knew Our History Series | Zinn Education Project

West Hartford Community Conversation on Unity Green
Please join us on Wednesday, February 10, 2021, from 6:30-8:00 p.m. for a virtual West Hartford Community Conversation: “Where Do We Go From Here? The Transformation of Unity Green.”The West Hartford Community Conversations series is designed to provide an outlet for residents to discuss and consider the history of slavery and racial bias in town. To goal is to create a safe space for community discussion, provide a historical context for modern problems, and generate ideas for action steps we all can take to create a more fair and just community.
In January 2021, First Church West Hartford, the owners of the West Hartford town green, announced that they were changing the name of this space in the middle of South Main St. just south of Farmington Ave. from “Goodman Green” to “Unity Green.” The “Goodman” came from Timothy Goodman, the man who had originally donated the land to serve as a parade ground for the community and also a man who enslaved Africans like a man named George.
This West Hartford Community Conversation is inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 1967 speech “Where Do We Go From Here?,” which will be discussed in relation to the newly renamed Unity Green. How can this space be transformed into a place for gathering, activism, history, and leadership?
“Where Do We Go From Here? The Transformation of Unity Green” is a free virtual and interactive event moderated by Adrienne Billings-Smith, Founder of Concerned Parents of Color West Hartford (CPCWH). The Community Conversation will provide a chance to talk about the newly renamed Unity Green in small breakout groups as well as to ask questions of specialists. Each breakout group will be facilitated using The University of Connecticut’s Dodd Center’s program Encounters: Democracy and Dialogues guidelines. The Foundation for West Hartford Public Schools funded the training of student, teacher, parent and community partners to be facilitators for these discussions.
Please register in advance to attend this free event at:
The Zoom meeting link will be emailed to you a day or two prior to the event.
“Where do we go from here? The Transformation of Unity Green” is brought to you through a collaboration between CPCWH, First Church West Hartford, the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society, West Hartford African American Social and Cultural Organization, West Hartford Community Interactive, West Hartford Public Schools’ Equity & Diversity Council, and Witness Stones West Hartford

Aiken MDI M2 Club ( Mixed Media Club )

The Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committees of Aiken, Charter Oak, and Norfelt invite you to a book discussion of Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi on Tuesday, February 23rd from 6:30-7:30pm by Zoom. Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You (A Remix Of Stamped from the Beginning) is a book about the history of race and racist ideas in America. Best-selling young adult author Jason Reynolds took Ibram X Kendi's Stamped and made it accessible for younger people (and adults) while maintaining its focus on the complexities of racist ideas and their pervasiveness in our culture. This book is not written like a typical history book; instead it provides an overview of how racial constructs and attitudes were developed for the purposes of power. During our meeting, we will discuss ways parents can stamp out racism in our own lives and communities.


For an overview of the book and its intended audience, check out this 6 minute interview of the authors on The Daily Show.  


A few limited number of book copies will be available upon request. A free audiobook version is available through the West Hartford Public Library. 


Please register by February 12th here.



2021 Winter Online Aiken Chess Club
Like athletics are exercise for the body, chess is exercise for the mind. Engaging in chess activity provides school students a substantial advantage in education; essentially development of the mind and patterns of thinking not otherwise offered or encountered. Luckily, it is also a fun and engaging game for kids!


Club meetings will be online via Zoom on:
Tuesdays 5-6 PM (January 19, 26, February 2, 9, 16, 23, March 2 and 9) or
Wednesdays 6-7 PM (January 20, 27, February 3, 10, 17, 24, March 3 and 10) or
Thursdays 5-6 PM (January 21, 28, February 4, 11, 18, 25, March 4 and 11).
The program is for students grades K through 5, no prior experience necessary. Please see the flyer for more information. 
Amazon Smile

AmazonSmile is a simple way for you to support Aiken every time you shop, at no cost to you. AmazonSmile is available at and can be activated for iOS and Android phones. When you shop at AmazonSmile, you’ll find the exact same low prices and selection as, with the added benefit that AmazonSmile will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to Aiken. 

  1. Sign up for AmazonSmile

  1. Search and select Aiken School PTO Inc. Make sure it notates West Hartford

  1. Start Shopping and be sure that everytime you make an Amazon purchase you log into

Directions can be found below to set up your device for AmazonSmile:

Any questions or concerns? Email us at,
Have a great week
Stay warm, stay well, stay safe
Amy and Sabrina