School Highlights

School Spirit Week / Semana de Espíritu Escolar

Thursday, February 15th, 2018/ jueves, 15 de febrero de 2018

Career Day! Dress up as your future dream career! No Props!

¡Día de Profesiones!  ¡Disfrázate como tu profesión favorita!


Wednesday, February 14th, 2018/ miércoles, 14 de febrero de 2018

Show your love Day! Wear clothing that represents the spirit of Valentine’s Day!

¡Día del Amor! ¡Vístanse con los colores alusivos al día de San Valentín!

Tuesday, February 13th, 2018/ martes, 13 de febrero de 2018

Unity Day! Wear P.S. /I.S. 78Q school colors (blue and White) to show we are united and stand together!

¡Día de Unidad Escolar!  ¡Usen los colores de la escuela (azul y blanco) para mostrar que estamos unidos!


Monday, February 12th, 2018/ lunes, 12 de febrero de 2018:

Mismatched Monday! Wear Silly socks or mismatched clothing!

¡Lunes Divertido!    ¡Vístete en ropa desparejada!


Congratulations to our Robotics Team!!

“Each year FIRST® LEGO® League releases a new challenge to teams based on a real-world theme.” The teams design, build, test and program robots using LEGO Mindstorms technology. This is P.S./I.S. 78Q’s second year as part of the competition. Our team is composed of 9 members from 6th, 7th and 8th grade.  Our students use problem solving, math, science and team building skills to help them create their project.  These skills go hand in hand with the Robotics curriculum that our students follow in our dedicated robotic school period. P.S./I.S. 78Q also has an after school robotics class with our SASF program where students can practice for next year’s robotics competition. It is open to any middle school student who would like to join. This year’s project was Aquaponics. Our team created a Micro Aquaponics system for NYC apartments.   An Aquaponics system combines Aquaculture and Hydroponics to create an ecosystem.

This year, our team won 4th place in the regional competition!! Congratulations to the hard working robotics team and their mentor, Mr. Pistell. Keep up the great work!! Our school is very proud of all of you!

Cada año, FIRST® LEGO® League anuncia un nuevo reto basado en temas mundial a los equipos escolares. Cada equipo diseña, construye, prueba y programa un robot usando la tecnología de LEGO Mindstorms. Este es el segundo año que P.S./I.S. 78Q participa en la competición. Nuestro equipo contiene nueve miembros del sexto, séptimo y octavo grado. Nuestros alumnos usan sus habilidades para resolver problemas en matemáticas, ciencia y aprenden a trabajar juntos para crear el proyecto. Estas habilidades son las mismas que se usan en el currículo de Robótica. P.S./I.S. 78Q también tiene una clase después del día escolar con el programa de SASF en cual los alumnos pueden practicar para la competición del próximo año. Este programa esta abierto a todos los alumnos de los niéveles 6, 7, y 8. El proyecto de este año es a base de Acuaponia. El término acuaponía se deriva de la combinación de las palabras acuicultura que es la producción de organismos acuáticos y hidroponía que se refiere a la producción de plantas sin suelo. Es un sistema sustentable de producción de plantas y peces.

Este año, nuestro equipo ganó el cuarto lugar en la competición regional.  Felicidades a nuestro equipo muy trabajador y a Mr. Pistell que es el mentor del equipo. ¡Muy bien hecho! ¡Que sigan adelante! ¡Estamos muy orgullosos!



College Awareness at P.S./I.S. 78Q


   Our staff representing their Alma Maters/ Nuestra facultad representando universidades 

College Awareness Day, now in its second year,  encourages students to consider a range of college and career options. Here at P.S./I.S. 78Q, the college pride is strong! Our teachers proudly represented their Alma Maters. We saw alumni from Cornell University, St. John’s University, Queens College, St. Joseph’s College, Brooklyn College, SUNY Buffalo and Catholic University. Many of our students also wore apparel from their favorite Colleges and Universities.  It was so much fun to learn about the different schools and opportunities that await our students in the future.

Este es el segundo año del programa: Día de preparación temprana para el ingreso a la universidad. Este programa anima a los estudiantes a considerar sus opciones para ir a la universidad. La facultad de P.S./I.S. 78Q orgullosamente represento varias universidades. Tenemos maestros y administración que estudiaron en Cornell University, St. John’s University, Queens College, St. Joseph’s College, Brooklyn College, SUNY Buffalo y Catholic University. Los estudiantes también representaron varias universidades con camisetas de cada universidad. Los estudiantes aprendieron mucho sobre las diferentes opciones y universidades que les espera en el futuro.

Hance Family Foundation Beautiful Me Toy Drive

A huge heartfelt thank you to our families for their generous donations to the Hance Family Foundation Beautiful Me Toy Drive. Your donations will help bring a smile to children during this holiday season. It is wonderful to see our PS/IS 78 children so excited to give to other children. Their smiles grew wider every time they passed the donation boxes. We are very fortunate that we had full boxes within a week of beginning the Toy drive! Your generosity will help to make this holiday season a wonderful one for children in need. A special thank you to our hard working Student Council for coordinating this Toy Drive. The Hance Family Foundation awarded our school a Certificate of Appreciation for our donations.  Congratulations PS/IS 78Q! What a wonderful way to begin this holiday season.

Un gran agradecimiento a nuestras familias por su generosidad a Hance Family Foundation Beautiful Me Toy Drive. Es maravilloso ver a nuestros estudiantes tan entusiasmados por ayudar a otros niños que no tienen mucho. Las sonrisas de nuestros estudiantes eran muy grandes cada vez que pasaban por las cajas de donación y veían cuantos juguetes colectamos. Somos muy afortunados que llenamos las cajas en la primera semana de esta colección. Su generosidad asegurará que los niños menos afortunados tengan una época festiva muy feliz. Un agradecimiento muy especial para nuestro consejo estudiantil que organizo esta colección. La Fundación de la Familia Hance ha extendido un certificado de agradecimiento a nuestra escuela por la donación.  Felicidades P.S./I.S. 78Q!!!


As you may know, students at P.S./I.S. 78Q have been growing fruits, vegetables and flowers in our two school gardens–one located in Gantry State Park and the other right next to the middle school on 5th Street, across from the sports field.  So far this year students have harvested lettuce, raspberries, strawberries and garlic that was planted last fall. They have planted lettuce, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash, basil, cabbage, string beans and flowers. Most of students’ efforts in the garden involve learning about and preparing the soil, planting seeds, fertilizing, watering and weeding.

Since 2010 gardening workshops with individual classes have been held by retired P.S./I.S. 78Q 5th grade teacher Walter Ditman and his wife, Carmelina Cartei. School principal Louis Pavone started the ball rolling in 2010 by helping the school obtain space in Gantry State Park, where the original school garden is located. Mr. Pavone also helped with the creation in 2015 of the newer school garden outside the school on 5th Street.
Even though the school year ends soon, the school garden still needs the tender, loving care given to it by our student gardeners.  We invite parents to join with us in taking care of the garden over the summer. Karly Lin, a parent volunteer whose child attends the school, has been involved in maintaining both school gardens over the past few years, and is now organizing parents to assist in that effort. Please email her at to be put on our mailing list, and look out for future events and activities through school notices. Any effort you can offer to take care of the P.S./I.S. school garden would be greatly appreciated.
To sign up and help water our school’s two gardens at the MS Building and Gantry Park this summer, please follow these easy steps:
1) Click this link to see our SignUp on SignUp.com
2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) you like.
3) Sign up! It’s Easy – you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on Your email address will not be shared with anyone.
If you prefer not to use your email address, please email parent volunteer Karly Lin at: and she can sign you up manually.


U.N. Australian Ambassador Gillian Bird Visits Our School

On Friday, May 26, the Australian Ambassador to the United Nations, Gillian Bird, visited our 7th grade class!

The visit was part of the Junior Ambassadors Program, a partnership between the New York City Mayor’s Office, United Nations, and 20 NYC schools.

The 7th graders first gave Ambassador Bird a warm welcome and introduced her to our great school. Then, the Ambassador discussed her prestigious career with the entire 7th grade class, which was followed by a Q+A session. At the end, the 7th graders presented Ms. Bird with amazing art, poems, and more!

Our 7th grade class (27 students) were selected to become Junior Ambassadors for the United Nations; a privilege that only 20 total NYC classrooms were accepted into! Under the guidance of Mr. Pistell (Middle School science), the 7th grade class is focused on fighting climate change through various forms of activism. The program entails a private tour of the UN, a visit from an ambassador, and finally a year-end culminating event where students present their work on climate change.




Naming of the Fleet

Due to the proximity of our school to new and existing ferry landings, P.S./I.S. 78Q was eligible to participate in a new vessel naming competition that allowed eligible 2nd grade classes to nominate names for 13 new citywide ferries.

In partnership with the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and Hornblower, the Department of Education held a competition to name 13 new vessels that will be inaugurated this summer. These new vessels connect New Yorkers along six brand new routes extending over 60 miles of waterways. The students drew from topics discussed in Units 1, 2, or 3 of the DOE’s Social Studies Scope and Sequence.


We are thrilled to announce that entries submitted by Ms. Di Roma’s class (201) and Ms. Loguercio’s class (203) both inspired names for two of the thirteen new Citywide Ferry Boats. Ms. Di Roma’s class came up with the name OPPORTUNITY, whilst Ms. Loguercio’s class created MUNSEE. The official boat names will be registered by the United States Coast Guard and will be recognized by members of the maritime community. The boats named by these two classes will be enjoyed by many passengers riding on the new Citywide Ferry.

A word from Ms. DiRoma – Class 201

The name “Opportunity”, was thought of after reading Building Manhattan by Laura Villa. The book taught us about how Manhattan started as just a small island, and over time was built up into the extraordinary city it is today. The word ‘opportunity’ was thought of after learning about all of the diverse people who came to America for a better life. Opportunity also means chance. Without chance, the first settlers wouldn’t have come to America to seek the land of opportunity, better life, and new beginnings.

The Munsee people made a life here first, in what was called Manhatta, by using the resources around them to survive. Additionally, the Munsee’s created their own clothing, built their own houses, and hunted animals to eat. They used the natural resources around them to help build a life.

On the other hand, travelers from other countries, such as England, sent explorers around the world to find a faster route to Asia for spices. In their travels, explorers like Henry Hudson, thought they could find Asia through the Northwest Passage. Little did they know, there was no Northwest Passage, but North America, which was discovered by the English in 1624. Hudson’s crew, settled by the mouth of the Hudson River, which became the city of New York. Upon arrival, the explorers found the first inhabitants, the Munsee’s, already in the area.

As time continued, the city began to build up as more and more countries discovered America. Engineers started to build bridges, tall buildings, thick roads, and transportation, which made New York City a more desirable place to live.

Today, New York City acts as a melting pot consisting of many diverse people from a variety of cultures, religions, countries, and languages. This is why “Ferry of Opportunity” should be the vessels name. Thanks to our vibrant past discoveries, New York City was, and still continues to be the city of opportunity.

A word from Ms. Loguercio – Class 203

We decided to name a new local Citywide Ferry, the Munsee after the Munsees. We have been learning about New York City over time. We learned about the First Inhabitants of New York City, the Munsees. The Munsees were the first people to call New York home before any other settlers. Since we live in New York City, the students were extremely interested in the Munsees because they were able to relate to the Munsees in some way.

The Munsee’s showed the students how their community, New York City, has changed over time. The students read resources in regard to the Munsee’s way of life, their traditions and culture. The students felt that the Munsees are an important part of history, especially the history of New York City. They wanted to name the ferry, the Munsee to illustrate how significant the Munsees are to New York City. The Munsees are relevant to New York City’s maritime history because the Munsees were the first people who inhabited New York. Water, including ponds, fish and the nearby oceans were very important for the Munsees, as they needed to fish to survive. Just like people now need ferries to trade and travel across a body of water, the Munsees used dugout canoes to help them fish for food. They also used the surrounding water to trade goods with nearby Natives.

We feel this name is the best for the new vessel because it demonstrates the history and culture of the Munsees. Having a vessel named after the Munsees would emphasize the importance of their traditions and culture to New York City. New York City is famous for its ethnic and cultural diversity. The Munsees highlight the cultural diversity that is New York City. We look forward to watching this new ferry vessel became part of our New York City culture!

Parent Volunteers

New & Veteran

We have been welcoming our newest Learning Leader Parent Volunteers during the last couple of weeks. The latest training took place back in January for the parents who signed up, but the badges and clearance from the Learning Leaders organization, an outside entity, only started coming in toward the beginning of March. Pretty much at the same time we were informed that the organization was closing its doors for good on March 15th, 2017. For the time being our wonderful parents can volunteer with their Learning Leader badges, valid until June 2017. Principal Pavone will decide how to proceed thereafter.

The primary area volunteers are needed for is lunch and recess monitoring. Our “veteran” parents (and grandparents) have been most helpful. Now we have even more sets of eyes to help keep our students safe during the recess-to-lunch and lunch-to-recess transitions. We are still refining the schedule. Once all the volunteers confirm the days and times of their availability, we hope to cover most days and lunch/recess periods in both the Early Childhood Center and Middle School buildings.

Our volunteers have been incredibly cooperative about monitoring recess, be it outdoors or indoors, and helping out in the lunchrooms. Many thanks to Christina Nieto-Arias, Cornelia Whitley, Bea Murphy, Maria Vrachnos, Nina Karchava, Nickia Joannides, Alicia Gljiva, Lajos Geenen, Yiota Dimitriou, Ana Abreu, Maryam Mizani-Bertrand, Mary Jobaida, Charmaine Mendoza, and Rebecca Barnes.

Family Ukulele Workshop

The Family Ukulele Workshop runs for the entire school year

The FAMILY UKULELE WORKSHOP, created and directed by our very own Mr. Gianutsos, known as Mr. G to many, takes place after school every Tuesday from 2:30PM to 3:15PM in the auditorium. Students in grades 2 through 8, along with their families, learn to play the ukulele and make music together.

The participants have already performed at the P.S./I.S. 78Q Winter Concert and are slated to perform at the Spring Concert too. They have also graciously performed for the Community Education Council back in December.

It is a delight to watch the group as Mr. Gianutsos strums along with the members.




¡ En Español Por Favor!

P.S/I.S. 78Q kicked off March with its new Spanish Club spearheaded by Ms. Barales. Interested students meet once weekly on Fridays after school. It is an engaging and interactive program. Students will not only develop or improve on their conversational skills, but will also have the opportunity to enrich their knowledge of the Spanish language by reading and writing. Culture will be introducedthrough the incorporation of classic stories. Ms. Barales knows the benefits of being bilingual and certainly wants to bring that to her students.

Students are still welcome to join!