Montclair Film Launches 505 Film + Friends Program

BY  |  Tuesday, Sep 19, 2017 4:27pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Montclair Film

Montclair Film today announced the launch of 505 FILM + FRIENDS, a new, inclusive sensory-friendly screening and socializing group for young people. The program will feature film screenings, discussions for small groups, and opportunities to socialize and meet new friends in the warm, welcoming environment of Montclair Film’s Cinema505. The groups meet twice monthly, with Teens aged 14-18 meeting on Fridays from 4:00pm – 7:00pm, and Young Adults aged 18-26 meeting on Sundays from 6:00pm – 9:00 pm.

Using the medium of film, students will be provided with the opportunity to explore their own real-life challenges and begin to learn about film and filmmaking. Discussions will integrate film vocabulary such as narrative, theme, main and supporting characters, set design, costume design, continuity, careers, genres, as well as storytelling techniques.

Montclair Film + Education is partnering with Dr. David Steinke, PhD, School Psychologist & Private Practice, Melissa Schaffer, Arts Educator, BFA Theatre Arts, Theatre, Music, Certified Movement Specialist, Playwright, and Dr. Priya Lalvani, Advisor, PhD, Associate Professor of Disability Studies, Montclair State University, who will be providing facilitation and advisory services for all 505 Film + Friends programs.

“Montclair Film always seeks to reach a broad range of audiences through the power of film,” said Montclair Film Education Director Sue Hollenberg. “505 Film + Friends provides a positive, thought-provoking, and welcoming environment for people with and without disabilities to leverage the magic of movies to inspire creativity, develop social skills, build confidence, and make connections.”

To see a complete schedule and register for 505 Film + Friends, visit and select the appropriate age group for your needs.

Scholarships are Available for Qualified Students. To apply, visit

Montclair BOE: After-School Initiatives, Healthy School Lunches, Homework Policy

BY  |  Tuesday, Sep 19, 2017 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

The Montclair Board of Education

With the days of school kids hanging out in ice cream parlors like the old Gruning’s in Montclair or malt shops like the fictional Pop’s Choklit Shoppe frequented by Archie Andrews and his pals at Riverdale High long gone, The Side Door has been providing a place for middle-school students to go after school and have a good time every Friday. Susan Johnson of Side Door went to the Montclair Board of Education’s September 18 meeting to promote the initiative.

Side Door is a drop-in center for middle-school students located a block away from Buzz Aldrin Middle School, at the Union Congregational Church on Cooper Avenue.  Available for free, the center offers activities such as basketball, touch football, table tennis, and video games, with help for homework also offered.  The activities also include live music and there are snacks for sale.  There is no registration required, and the activities are at no cost.  Volunteers from the high school, Montclair State University, and elsewhere in town serve as mentors and chaperones.

Board member Joseph Kavesh offered his verbal support for the side door program.  He said that the time after school is an important time to engage students in positive activities and when they are most susceptible to being disengaged.  Johnson noted that most of the students involved in Side Door are boys, because girls after school like to get their nails done, go to friends’ houses, or the like, “and the boys get out of school and go, ‘I don’t know, what do you want to do?’  So they end up at Side Door.” Continue Reading

Weekend Family Fun: Storytime, Family Art Adventure, PlayDay South Orange!

BY  |  Friday, Sep 15, 2017 11:16am  |  COMMENTS (0)

The weekend is here! Who’s excited? We’ve rounded up plenty of fun and family-friendly things to do around town and beyond to help you spend your time.

Saturday Morning Author/Illustrator Storytime continues at Watchung Booksellers (54 Fairfield Street, Watchung Plaza, Montclair). This week, author and illustrator Kristine Lombardi will present Mr. Biddles. An inventor cat and a lobster left on his doorstep – a great friendship in the making. Storytime begins at 10:30 AM. Continue Reading

Sponsored Post: L3 Academy is an Award-Winning STEM Learning Center in Montclair

BY  |  Tuesday, Sep 12, 2017 2:00pm

L3 Academy

An award-winning STEM learning center located in Montclair, L3 Academy offers a variety of programs from robotics, coding, Minecraft, math, science (Candy Science this term!), entrepreneurship and many others. Each semester, new and previously popular classes are offered in Montclair (and now Totowa!).  

Turning Exposure into Deep Interest: Robotics

L3 offers children a chance to try something new or do something they love. For those who have a deeper interest, L3 Academy offers a tiered progression where students can continue to work towards building more functional competency or even go to competition. For example, our L3 Academy Robotics Club offers both exposure and progression through programs such as:

l3 aademy

Coding, Videogames and Building Apps

For its coding classes, L3 Academy offers Intro to Programming I & II (Wednesday, Saturday), Python and several other languages. Build an App is back this winter.  It takes time to gain proficiency, but exposure can also spark interest.

Young Learners

L3’s Young Learner series is geared towards students ages PreK/K. Our goal is for children to feel comfortable working with gears or getting messy with science. Fall classes include:

Math: I Love Math & Competitions

L3 wants kids to love math as much as the two co-founders. In fact, the basis of its math classes is similar to those of Russian math circles, but with an emphasis of mastering foundational math. Math competition is offered and hosted at L3.


For those who don’t know what they want, why not try out the STEM Sampler or Tinker Lab classes? Or maybe mom or dad can gift you a month of Minecraft?  Stock Wizards is offered to all those junior Wall Street tycoons. Last year, one of our students ranked #2 trader in NJ’s Stock Market Game.

L3 Academy’s Mission

“Our mission is to foster a lifelong love of learning no matter what the subject,” said Yin Chang, Co-Founder, L3 Academy. “Much of our programs focus on critical thinking and problem solving as well as encouraging hands-on functional skills. Our students learn how to do it themselves; collaboration skills; self-respect as well as respect for others; and most importantly how to recover from not doing something quite correctly.

“Persistence or just plain grit is the foundation for a wonderful future. To be able fail or make a mistake, recover and learn from it is one of the most valuable lessons we can offer. We encourage kids to laugh it off, learn from it and don’t give up.”  

Birthday Parties & Camps

Let’s not forget birthday parties and camps, which are offered year-round.


Contact L3 Academy at 973.783.8333 or [email protected].





Calling All Kids! The Art (Imitates Life, Imitates Art) Parade: A Seed Artist Presentation

Tuesday, Sep 12, 2017 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Kids will turn themselves into wild and colorful living works of art and parade, dance and sing through Downtown Montclair as led by a band of musicians from Seed Artists! Kids, just bring your wildest ideas and we’ll bring the art supplies and the artists and parents to help you become a life-size work of art. We’ll create on September 21 and finish up and parade through Downtown Montclair on September 22 at 6pm! Presented by Seed Artists in conjunction with the Montclair Public Library. Registration required. Continue Reading

Weekend Family Fun: Movies, StoryTime, Teddy Bear Picnic and More!

Friday, Sep 08, 2017 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Now that school is back in session, it’s time to make sure the weekend really shines! We’ve rounded up lots of fun and family friendly activities in and around town to help you fill your time.

Saturday Morning Author/Illustrator Storytime is back at Watchung Booksellers (54 Fairfield Street, Watchung Plaza, Montclair). This week, Tara Laza will present 7 Ate 9, a fun story kids will love. Storytime begins at 10:30 AM.

Continue Reading

Montclair Board of Education: PARCC, Preschool Funding and Use of School Facilities

BY  |  Thursday, Sep 07, 2017 6:38am  |  COMMENTS (0)

The Montclair Board of Education

The Montclair Board of Education held an uncharacteristically short and sparsely attended workshop meeting on September 6, the last day of summer vacation for the students.  The board spent much of its time discussing an item on the agenda regarding public use of school facilities and voting on rote business office issues.

Board member Eve Robinson asked about bringing preschool education back to the district.  She said the state budget this year allocated money for preschool funding for districts that were permitted to apply, but Montclair was not one of them.  Robinson proposed it be returned to the budget in the hope of qualifying for state aid when the state’s 2018 budget is worked out.

“I would like to keep it in your district goals so that we can be continually be working towards being able to responding when the expansion comes out and goes out to other districts,” she said.  She specifically asked the Interim Superintendent Barbara Pinsak include it in the district goals.

Superintendent Pinsak asked if including preschool funding as an official goal would help keep it from getting pushed away.  Robinson said it would, noting that has gotten pushed back in the past.  She made it clear that there should at least be a plan in place should state preschool funding be expanded.  The board will likely discuss it at a workshop in the near future.

Superintendent Pinsak reported that there were difficulties with communicating school bus schedules and apologized for any inconvenience that may have been caused, and she added that they district was working on the situation and resolving the issues quickly.  She also reported that individual scores for the students who took the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) tests to their parents with a letter explaining how to interpret them.  It will be posted on the district’s Web site on September 7.

The one major agenda issues was a review of Regulation 7510, which governs public use of district resources and facilities.  Board member Joseph Kavesh asked if there was any concern with the rule requiring the parties interested in using district facilities to submit a certificate of insurance for bodily injury at a minimum of $1 million, with the suggestion that it should be higher.  Board President Laura Hertzog said it could be raised for some special events using school facilities, like a gymnastics event, and Robinson cautioned that raising the minimum would have a detrimental effect on non-profit groups wanting to use the facilities, since they were unlikely to be able to afford anything higher than a million dollars.  Board President Hertzog stressed the district could be flexible in determining what the minimum should be, depending on the group involved.  No action was taken on this discussion topic at the meeting.

Only two people participated in public comment.  Student Noah Gale, a Montclair Hugh School senior and a regular student resident at the board meetings, praised the board for their fine work and welcomed back everyone, including new Business Administrator Emidio D’Andrea, for the 2017-18 school year.   Jordan Thompson said he believed there should be two student advocates to address discrimination who are neither district employees nor union members who report discriminatory acts by the staff to the assistant superintendent’s office.

On the search for a new superintendent, Board President Hertzog acknowledged the ad recently placed in the Star-Ledger posted for a superintendent, which showed forward motion on the issue.  She said she was pleased with how the search firm Hazard Young Attea & Associates (HYA) has been helping to find a permanent superintendent.  The interim superintendent, meanwhile, announced that the community was starting a food drive to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey during the second full week of September, and she encouraged people to get involved.  Also, Robinson had an announcement of her own.   She informed the board and the audience that there will be a meeting of the School Climate and Culture Subcommittee at the Charles H. Bullock School library to discuss respect for diversity, emotional and physical safety in the schools, and participating in school life, among other topics.  The meeting is at 1 P.M. on Sunday, September 17.

MFEE Seeks Montclair High School Students For Junior Board

BY  |  Wednesday, Sep 06, 2017 3:07pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Calling all Montclair High School students! Do you have ideas on how to improve education and support the teachers and students at MHS? Would you like to make a lasting change at your school?

Montclair Fund for Educational Excellence (MFEE) a non-profit that raises funds for the Montclair Public Schools — will establish a Junior Board for the 2017 – 2018 school year and is currently accepting applications from MHS students interested in becoming philanthropists and change agents in their school community.

The MFEE Junior Board will be comprised of two to three MHS students from each grade level. Any student who is interested in improving his or her school community can apply!

The Junior Board will be given $2,500 and tasked with allocating those funds in grants awarded to MHS teachers and/or students who apply. As a Junior Board Member you will be a decision maker in the entire process.
Continue Reading

Weekend Family Fun: Paddle the Passaic, Marbling, Wagon Ride and More!

BY  |  Friday, Sep 01, 2017 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Happy Labor Day Weekend! It’s the unofficial end of summer, but that doesn’t mean the fun has to stop. We’ve rounded up plenty of fun and family-friendly things to do in and around the area. Check ‘em out!

Barnes & Noble at Clifton Commons (395 Route 3 East, Clifton) will host Uni the Unicorn and the Dream Come True Storytime on Saturday at 11:00 AM. In this sequel to Uni the Unicorn, Uni and the little girl who believes in unicorns finally meet and work together to save a magical land and its inhabitants. Activities to follow.

Fosterfields Living Historical Farm (73 Kahdena Road, Morris Township) will host Explore the Farm Wagon Ride on Saturday from 10:15 AM to 12:00 PM. Board the open-air wagon for a leisurely ride around the historic farm. Cost is $6 per adult, $5 per senior, $4 per child age 4-16, $2 per child age 2-3, and free for children under age 2.

The Creativity Caravan (28 South Fullerton Avenue, Montclair) will host The Magic of Paper Marbling on Saturday from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Learn the ancient art of ebru, or paper marbling, in this drop-in event. All ages welcome. Cost is $10 per person and includes all materials.

Also on Saturday, Michaels of Clifton (348 Route 3 West, Riverfront Center, Clifton) will host a Kids Club Floogal Windsock workshop from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Children ages 3 and up can make a quick project. Sign up in store or online, or just drop in. Parent or guardian must remain on premises. Cost is $2 and includes supplies.

On Sunday, Frelinghuysen Arboretum (353 Hanover Avenue, Morris Township) will host its First Sunday Tour from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM. Meet in the lobby of the Haggerty Education Center for a tour of the grounds. Learn the history and enjoy the beauty. Be sure to wear sturdy shoes. Cost is $3; exact change is requested.

Also on Sunday, the Drop-In Studio at Montclair Art Museum (3 South Mountain Avenue, Montclair) returns between 1:00 PM and 4:00 PM. The Helen & Bill Geyer Art Studio will be stocked with a range of art materials to explore with a seasoned MAM studio instructor. Open ended activities are designed to spark creativity in artists of all ages and abilities. This is free for members and included in Museum admission for non-members.

The annual Rutherford Labor Day Street Fair will be held on Monday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Park Avenue between Ames Avenue and W. Park Place. This event will feature a crafts and antiques fair, life entertainment on two stages, food stands, kids’ amusements including rides and a costume character musical revue, a beer garden, and more!

Also on Monday, Paddle on the Passaic. Hosted at the Essex County Environmental Center (621-B Eagle Rock Avenue, Roseland), this event is geared for beginners and children 10 and up accompanied by a parent or guardian. Paddlers can enjoy the peaceful scenery as they paddle up river and then float downstream. Meet in the Garibaldi Hall parking lot. Cost is $30 per canoe. Advance registration is required by calling 973.228-8776.

For more upcoming events, check out the family friendly events, showcased in green, on Baristanet Calendar.

Montclair Public Library Goes Back to School!

BY  |  Thursday, Aug 31, 2017 12:31pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

The Montclair Public Library’s Youth Services Staff is ready for school! Staff will be on hand at the back-to-school nights at Montclair Public Schools with information about all the library resources available to support your child’s educational needs.

Family Storytime @ Bellevue Avenue Branch

This program is designed for newborns through five year-olds accompanied by a favorite adult. Share books, stories, finger-plays, rhymes, and music with your children. Enjoy a story session that encourages a love of reading and fosters the development of early literacy skills. Children of all abilities welcome. Family Storytime takes place on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month. *Please note that registration is required for each individual storytime.
Registration required
Newborns to 5 year-olds
Wednesdays, September 6 & 20 at 11am
Kids Place @ Bellevue Avenue Branch Library, 185 Bellevue Ave., Upper Montclair
*Please note that the Library is not otherwise open during program. Continue Reading

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