Fairmeadow Elementary School eNews

Where Learning is a Team Sport!
October 31 , 2016
Fairmeadow News
Principal's Message
Greetings Fairmeadow Community,
Every student at Fairmeadow is building and growing a reading life, from developing productive reading habits in the younger grades, to deepening comprehension and connection to text in the upper grades. Our goal of encouraging joyful, purposeful readers guides reading instruction across our school. At our most recent Principal's Coffee we discussed elements of strong reading instruction, and participants had the opportunity to explore our reading curriculum, the Units of Study in Teaching Reading, and the guiding principals of our Reading Workshop instruction. We know that readers need uninterrupted stretches of time to read high interest books, across a variety of genres, at their appropriate instructional level. Readers also need explicit instruction in the skills and strategies of proficient reading, and they need to talk and write about their reading. Our community of readers grows stronger each day, thanks to our skillful teachers, and their intentional reading instruction that follows these principles. Thank you for supporting your young reader through providing time and space to read at home, for modeling your own reading life for your child, and for asking your child questions about his or her reading.
The fall Scholastic Book Fair arrives this week, transforming Fairmeadow's MP Room from a gathering hub into a bountiful barn of books! Designed for emergent readers to voracious veterans, the Fairmeadow Book Fair is sure to have many titles to pique your interest, and tap into the interests of your children. This Tuesday, November 1st marks the start the Book Fair, with browsing and purchasing available before and after school through the end of the week. The Book Fair is a great opportunity to update your home library, and to get your child excited about new titles and new topics to deepen their reading life!
By the distribution of this newsletter we will be only moments away from our annual Halloween parade, this Monday, October 31st from 8:35-9:10 am on the blacktop. This fun, fall tradition provides for an exciting morning of community and creativity as we celebrate the season together. Wearing a costume to school is entirely optional, though if your child does choose to wear a costume please plan to bring a change of clothes to ensure for a productive day in the classroom following the parade. In these final moments of preparation, please also ensure that your child's costume is school appropriate, leaving any weapons or fake blood at home. Thanks, in advance, for your flexibility if we end up needing to parade in the rain!
The end of the first trimester, now only two short weeks away, marks a wonderful opportunity to reflect with your child about his or her growth over the first third of the school year, and to check-in on goals set for the remainder of the year. What a productive trimester is has been!
Grant Althouse
Fairmeadow's Fall Scholastic Book Fair Starts Tomorrow!
Nov 1-4, Fairmeadow MP Room
The Book Fair will be open at the following times:
  • Tuesday, November 1, 2:30-3:30 pm
  • Wednesday, November 2, 8-9 am and 1:30-3:00 pm
  • Thursday, November 3, 8-9 am and 2:30-3:30 pm
  • Friday, November 4, 8-9 am and 2:30-3:30 pm
Interested in helping out? Volunteers are needed for setting up, helping during the book fair's open hours, and packing up. You can sign up here Questions? Contact Claire Kirner.
Auditions Soon for Fairmeadow Play "Aladdin"
The award winning Palo Alto Children's Theatre (PACT) is coming back to Fairmeadow this year to produce another outreach play! This year's play is "Aladdin," the classic tale of an impoverished boy's quest to win the hand of a Princess, the beautiful daughter of the Sultan. This is a golden opportunity for our students to work with theatre professionals in the comfortable setting of their own school. All children who audition receive roles in the play. Open to all 3rd-5th graders. Audition Dates:
  • 3rd Graders: Wed, Nov 16, 1:40-3:00 pm
  • 4th-5th Graders: Thurs, November 17, 3:00-5:00 pm

Those with conflicts can come either day. Performance dates are January 26-28.

Rainy Day School Commutes
With more wet weather on the way, the Safe Routes to School team has some tips:
Be Safe on Slick Streets
Teach your child to be more cautious and alert than usual. Drivers are often frustrated because of the extra congestion that comes with rain. Also, young children should be taught that it takes vehicles longer to stop on slick streets. Learning and practicing basic rainy day street skills prepares children to navigate streets safely when they become more independent.  When you drive on rainy days, please allow extra time so you can reduce your speed to avoid slipping. All road users should be vigilant in these conditions.
Gear Up for Rain!
Gear up to enjoy a little puddle jumping on the way. Dressing in brightly colored umbrellas, boots, ponchos, and raincoats ensures children will be comfortable and safely visible. Bikes should be equipped with fenders, lights, and reflectors.
Set Up a Rainy Day Carpool
If you can't walk or bike, consider carpooling to help reduce overcrowding in the school parking lot and on surrounding streets. Make an arrangement in advance with families you see on your walking and bicycling route, and have a text group or phone tree of rainy day carpool partners ready to share a ride when the clouds burst. Planning ahead reduces rainy day auto congestion and improves safety for everyone.
Reminder -- Walkathon Party Payments Due
Please make sure you have paid for the parties you signed up for at the Walkathon. Emails with payment information went out a few weeks ago. You can pay online or drop off a check in the office. If you have any questions, please contact Nirmala Patni or Karrie Chen.

October is National Bullying Prevention Month
Awareness events are sponsored by PAUSD, the Palo Alto Council of PTAs, the Palo Alto Community Advisory Committee for Special Education (CAC), Parent Advocates for Student Success (PASS), and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer & Questioning (LGBTQQ) Committee. Contact jgonzalez@pausd.org for more information.
Renaming Schools Advisory Committee Community Town Hall Meeting
Mon, Nov 7, 6:30-8:30 pm, Media Arts Center at Palo Alto High School ** New date/time**
To rename or not to rename any of Palo Alto's schools, that is the topic distinguished historians and ethicists with expertise in Eugenics will discuss. The panelists will share their views on how to evaluate the legacy of those Palo Alto school namesakes who were also some of California's leading Eugenicists. They will look at Eugenics in the context of its time, the lasting impact Eugenics has in the US, and what learning opportunities a school renaming would provide our public school district. The panelists are: Mary Rorty, Clinical Associate Professor at the Stanford University Medical Center and a Fellow of the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics, Milton Reynolds, Senior Program Manager of the 'Facing History and Ourselves' non-profit organization with focus on how historical events shape today's society, and Tony Platt, Prof Emeritus of American History, Public Policy and Social Science; University of Chicago, UC Berkeley, Cal State University Sacramento, San Jose State University. The town hall will be moderated by Ken Yale, and a representative from the Palo Alto Historical Society will share relevant events from Palo Alto's and our schools' history.

PTAC  News
Make Your Voice Heard for Your Child and School
November 8 is Election Day in California and across the nation
Laws enacted by local, state, and national bodies are primary sources of public policy. Securing adequate laws for the care and protection of children and youth is one of the purposes of PTA.  As a non-partisan association with a long track record of speaking up for all families and connecting families, schools and communities, PTA never comments on, endorses, or supports individual candidates for office. However, the association does take positions on issues  that impact the education, health, and well-being of California's children and families. California State PTA takes positions based on our authorities: resolutions and position statements adopted by our members. PTAs also can sponsor and hold candidate forums and share resources. Find out more about how the California State PTA takes positions . This election day the California State PTA is supporting five statewide ballot initiatives . We encourage everyone to take the opportunity to register and  vote in this election! Learn more with these resources and information: PTA support on statewide ballot initiatives.  Research your local ballot  and  polling place.

Community  News
Silicon Valley Boychoir Auditions
Fridays in November by Appointment, Palo Alto
Audition for the January 2017 semester and join 80 other boys across four levels. Auditions are held at the choir's rehearsal location in Palo Alto (600 Homer Ave). Open to boys ages 7 and up. High school and middle school boys with experience may audition for upper levels. SVB provides a personalized approach to teaching singing, music theory, and sight-singing, and provides flexible scheduling for busy families. In addition to their own winter and spring concerts, SVB performs for local events including performances at Stanford University, West Bay Opera, and singing the national anthem at sporting events. Email info@svboychoir.org or visit svboychoir.org.
Starting Strong with Kidpower Workshop for 3-5 year-olds with their Adults
Sat, Nov 5, 9-9:50 am, PACCC Kids Club, El Carmelo
Through puppets and fun, interactive stories, learn how to introduce People Safety Skills and to continue to practice them in your daily life.  For information call 800-467-6997  or register here Classes fill up quickly, so let us know right away if you're interested.
Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra (PACO) Opens Its 51st Season
Nov 5, 7:30 pm Dreams and Prayers (Senior Orchestra)
Nov 6, 3 pm (Sinfonia Orchestra)
Nov 13, 3 pm (Debut Orchestra)
Dec 18, 3 pm Holiday Extravaganza (Senior Orchestra)
Cubberley Theatre, 4000 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto. 
Admission is FREE except for the Holiday Extravaganza (Adults $10, 18 & under free)  Award-winning youth orchestra PACO's Senior Orchestra will open its season with music by Handel, Britten, and more. There is something for everyone at PACO concerts from small ensemble pieces to orchestra music as these dedicated musicians present an extraordinary passion for music making! Mark your calendars for the Holiday Extravaganza with guest performers from the Pacific Ballet Academy and Cantabile Youth Singers. More info and compete line-up of concerts on the  2016-17 season brochure  or visit  pacomusic.org .
Gunn Choir Fall Concert
Sun, Nov 6, 7 pm, First Presbyterian Church, 1140 Cowper St, Palo Alto 
Join the award-winning Gunn Choirs, under the direction of William Liberatore, for a festive evening of song featuring the Treble Choir, Concert Choir, and Chamber Singers. The diverse repertoire includes selections from South Africa, France, Korea, China, Bulgaria, and Hungary, as well as American folk songs and spirituals. Tickets are $7 ($5 for students in high school or younger) and are available from choir members or at the door. 
City to Host Veterans Day Recognition Event
Mon, Nov 7, 3-6:30 pm, El Palo Alto Room, Mitchell Park Community Center 
In honor of all Armed Forces veterans and active duty service members, the City is hosting a Veterans Day Recognition Event on Nov 7. There will be Veterans services and resource tables open from 3-4 pm with the recognition event beginning at 4 pm. Lieutenant General Rex C. McMillian, Commander of Marine Forces Reserve and Marine Forces North, will be in attendance to share his experiences serving the nation. The public is invited to come salute our military members and Veterans are encouraged to dress in uniform.  For more information, please email Janice Svendsen or call 650-329-2105.
Palo Alto Philharmonic Fall Chamber Concert
Sat, Nov 12, 8 pm, 1313 Newell Rd, Palo Alto
Featuring the works of Richard Strauss, Johannes Brahms, Arcangelo Corelli, and Morley Calvert. For more information or to purchase tickets click here.
Huge Children's Used Book Sale to Benefit Palo Alto Libraries
Sat & Sun, Nov 12 & 13, 10 am - 4 pm, Cubberley Community Center (FOPAL Children's Sale Room)
More than 13,000 kids' books, games, puzzles, CDs, and DVDs will be on sale at incredibly low prices at Friends of the Palo Alto Library's monthly book sale -- everything from board books and picture books to school age fiction and nonfiction titles to early teen fiction.  All items are lightly used or new and are sorted by age level and subject matter.  Many books in foreign languages. Over 50,000 books for adults in FOPAL's Main and Bargain rooms.
Dance Connection's 18th Annual Nutcracker Ballet
Fri, Dec 2, 7 pm & Sat, Dec 3, 4 pm, Smithwick Theater, Foothill College
Mark your calendars for Dance Connection's 18th Annual Nutcracker Ballet! An entertaining, child-friendly, and professionally executed production the whole family will enjoy! Tickets go on sale through the Dance Connection website beginning October 24th. Reserved seating. More info here.
Conference on Children's Grief Sponsored by Kara
Thu, Nov 3, 9 am - 2 pm, Webcast, 457 Kingsley Av, Palo Alto
The National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC) will conduct a free webcast on Grief and Urban Youth. This event is sponsored by Kara Grief Services. More information hereClick here to register.

Archives and Publication Guidelines
Fairmeadow eNews is a publication of the Fairmeadow PTA. Previous editions of eNews can be found at the  eNews archive  page.  Please see the PTA website for the eNews Publication Guidelines If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact  Christy Moision , Fairmeadow's eNews editor.
In This Issue
Important Dates
Oct 31 Halloween Parade (8:35-9:10)
Nov 1-4 Book Fair
Nov 2 PTA Coffee and General Meeting
Nov 6 End of Daylight Savings Time
Nov 11 Veterans Day - No School
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