Fairmeadow Elementary School eNews

Where Learning is a Team Sport!
December 11, 2017
Fairmeadow News
Principal's Message
Greetings Fairmeadow Community,
 
What makes you unique ? While celebrating Inclusive Schools Week last week, our students and staff discussed this question and shared hundreds of individual attributes about themselves as one way to capture the diversity of our community. Through this simple exercise, we emphasized that every person contributes to our school in distinctive ways, and that everyone has strengths we can capitalize on in our classrooms. The display of bright colored cards capturing these unique attributes attracted much attention last week, and I encourage you to stop by and read some of the comments our children shared. Our school of diverse language, ethnic background, interests, perspectives, abilities, religion, and experiences is a great strength of Fairmeadow, and a strong unifier in our community.
 
In a discussion with an engaged group of parents at our Principal's Coffee last week, we examined how the concept of inclusion relates to a safe and welcoming school climate, as well as to addressing diverse academic needs in every classroom. For our children, it is very normal to be with an incredibly diverse population of people at our school, though every child can benefit from inclusive modeling, and safe spaces to ask questions. Parents hold significant influence in the way we talk about differences, and the way we model inclusive behavior and practices for our children. Some members of our parent community may feel isolated from the mainstream culture at our school, and it could benefit all of us to consider actions we can take to improve the sense of belonging for all in our parent community as well as our student community. I would love to hear ideas that you may have about how to improve and enhance our inclusive school climate for children and parents alike!
 
More than 180 countries across the world participated in last week's Hour of Code challenge, and many Fairmeadow students participated as well! Celebrated as one of the largest education events in history, millions of students spent time at school last week learning the basic process of coding with both digital and non-digital options. Many Fairmeadow children practiced sequential problem solving and outside-the-box thinking while engaging in coding fundamentals in classrooms. In a special partnership with our neighboring school, J.L. Stanford Middle School, four upper grade Fairmeadow classes joined 7th and 8th graders in Computer Science Class, and together they created thousands of lines of code! If you would like more information about coding activities you can explore with your child at home, please visit code.org.
 
We are prepared and excited for two engaging and fun final school weeks of 2017 at Fairmeadow!
 
With kindest regards and appreciation,
 
Grant Althouse, Principal
Contributions for Support Staff
Hi Fairmeadow Families,
On behalf of our Fairmeadow community, we would like to give a holiday thank you gift to our custodians, front office staff, and hot lunch server. If you would like to participate, please get me your contribution by Monday, December 18th. You can use any of the following methods:
If you prefer to give by cash or check, please contact us directly.

Thanks,
Tiffany and Olivier Aubin ( olivier.aubin@gmail.com)
Fairmeadow Families Holiday Fund
As the holidays are upon us, please consider making a donation to the Fairmeadow  Families Holiday Fund. We would would like to come together to provide assistance to families in our school community who need a little help during the holiday season. The office will be accepting donations in the form of cash or checks (please make them out to Claire Kirner). You can also contribute via PayPal (chkirner@comcast.net). Our Fairmeadow office staff will then purchase gift cards to distribute. If you'd like to participate, please do so by Wednesday, December 13th.
Feel free to contact Claire Kirner or Alicia in the front office with any questions.
Hello 3rd Grade Families!
The staff luncheon this month is on  Thursday, December 14th, and is being hosted by 3rd grade families. These monthly luncheons give us a chance to show our appreciation for all that the Fairmeadow staff does for our children. It allows the entire faculty and staff to come together over a meal and they really enjoy and look forward to it. This month's theme is Brunch. 

Please consider signing up to contribute food to the luncheon. In addition, we need a few people to come to the luncheon to help with set-up and clean-up. These jobs do not take long. Click here to sign-up to contribute a dish or help out!  If you have trouble accessing the Google doc, please email  Sachi Messerian  with the dish you want to bring.

Is your child not in 3rd grade?  Click here for a list of staff luncheons scheduled for this school year.

PAUSD News
Superintendent's Weekly Message
We will re-post Karen Hendricks' Weekly Message here  each week, in case you missed it on her previous Infinite Campus email to you.
PAUSD's Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) Second Advisor Group Meeting
Thu, Dec 14, 5-7 pm, District Office, Board Room (SDC), 25 Churchill Ave  
The meeting will review District data and stakeholders will be able to give input and feedback. Visit PAUSD LCAP Website
 or Parent's Guide to LCAP Dashboard  for more information.  Spanish translation will be available.
CAC Holiday Tea & Welcome Reception (Free)
Fri, Dec 15, 8:30-10 am, Lucie Stern Community Center, 1305 Middlefield Rd
Parenting a child with special needs has unique challenges, so taking good care of yourself is important. Join us for a healthy and tasty breakfast buffet, wellness treats and a presentation by Assistant Superintendent Lana Conaway. She will speak about equity, access, wellness and safety for all students, especially those receiving Special Education services. Ms. Conaway is one of PAUSD's new leaders and oversees Special Education, Counseling, Health, and Wellness in her role as Assistant Superintendent of Strategic Initiatives and Operations. Childcare will not be provided, but children are welcome. Spanish language translation will be available. Hosted by the Palo Alto Community Advisory Committee for Special Education and the Palo Alto Council of PTAs. For questions contact  paloaltocac@gmail.com RSVP's requested (but not required).

PTAC News
Early Childhood Education: Why Is It Essential to Our Collective Future?
Mon, Dec 11, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Mitchell Park Community Center, El Palo Alto Room
The League of Women Voters of Palo Alto invites you to this year's Winter Luncheon, featuring Stanford Professor Deborah Stipek, a nationally acclaimed author and leader in Early Childhood Education. Professor Stipek is the Judy Koch Professor of Education in the Graduate School of Education and the Faculty Director of the Haas Center for Public Service at Stanford. Menu: Seasonal green salad with pears and walnuts, roasted root vegetable pot pie served with a cranberry-applesauce relish. Vegetarian (gluten-free upon request), $35.00. RSVP here . Questions?  Email  sigridkp@yahoo.com . Co-sponsored by PTAC, Congregation Beth Am, Avenidas, Strong Start, an initiative of the Santa Clara County Office of Education, Education Committee of the LWVs of Santa Clara County, AAUW of Palo Alto, and LWVs of Los Altos-Mountain View, San Jose-Santa Clara, and South San Mateo County.
2018 Palo Alto Chinese New Year Fair (Mar 4, 2018)
Poster Competition: The organizers of the above event are calling  all  PAUSD students for a Poster Competition to design a brochure cover for the 2018 PA CNY Fair. Posters must be between 8.5" x 11" and 12" x 18" on unlined paper and any media (crayons, markers, paint, etc.) are accepted. Include "2018 Palo Alto Chinese New Year Fair" and the theme "Year of Dog" on the poster, and write your name, grade, school, and an email contact on the back. Please submit entries to the front desk of Mitchell Park Library  by January 12, 2018 . Email  cheri161@yahoo.com  for more information. Entries may be displayed at the Fair, which is organized by Palo Alto Chinese Parent Club, a non-profit organization that serves the Palo Alto community, and co-sponsored by PTA Council.

Community News
9 Simple Tips for Biking In The Rain
As the days get shorter and colder, fewer students are riding, leading to increased traffic congestion around schools. Check out these helpful safety tips and videos from the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.
Fiery Arts Glass Workshops at Palo Alto High School
Sat & Sun, Jan 6-7, Feb to Jun 2018, 9 am - 3 pm, Palo Alto High School's Glass Studio
These workshops are open to the public, students and parents. You learn glass blowing technique in this hands-on 2-day weekend workshop. Advanced signup is required. Class limit is 4. Teens and adults. $425 per person. Proceeds benefit the Palo Alto High School Fiery Arts Boosters. Contact David Camner, founder of Paly Glass,  for more information and dates.
Show your Support for PiE on the Donor Thank you Banners
PiE is creating Donor Thank You banners to be hung at each elementary school in January. The names of every elementary family that has donated any gift to PiE this school year by December 31st will be on display on their school's banner (gift amounts will NOT be listed). Please join us! If you have not yet given this school year, please make a tax-deductible donation at papie.org/donate. PiE's funding benefits ALL Palo Alto students and we need ALL families to participate. We are successful together!
Annual BayLUG Holiday LEGO Show
Fridays-Sundays, Dec 8 - Jan 14, 11 am - 3:30 pm, Frank Livermore Learning Center, 351 Homer Ave
The Museum of American Heritage is  welcoming back the LEGO® User Group's (BayLUG) and Bay Area LEGO® Train Club's (BayLTC) Annual Holiday LEGO® Show Pop-Up Exhibit. BayLUG and BayTLC will be displaying a variety of creative holiday scenes. Browse through the imaginative holiday creations, which include holiday trains, miniature cities and more. The displays are different each year. General admission is $3 per person; cash only at the door. BayLUG and MOAH members are free. The museum is closed on December 24th for Christmas Eve.
Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra's Holiday Extravaganza with Anderson & Roe
Sat, Dec 16, 3 pm, Smithwick Theater, 12345 El Monte Rd, Los Altos Hills
Pianists Greg Anderson and Elizabeth Joy Roe join forces with PACO for high-octane performances of Bach and their original Fantasy on Bizet's Carmen. Program includes Corelli's Christmas Concerto and Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite, featuring all five PACO orchestras and the Pacific Ballet Academy. Tickets can be purchased online ($20 for back orchestra seats and $30 for front orchestra seats). Group rates available for 10+ tickets. For more information: info@pacomusic.org or (650) 856-3848.

Society of Bookworms
Wed, Dec 20, 4-5 pm, Children's Library, 1276 Harriet St
Join us in a discussion of the Louis Sachar's thrilling adventure,  Fuzzy Mud .  A limited number of copies are available for pick-up at Children's Library. Registration required. Grades 4-6 only.
Ragazzi Boys Chorus Free SingFest Minicamp
Sat, Jan 20, 9:30 am - 1 pm, 178 Clinton St, Redwood City
Let your 7-10 year old boy test-drive this 'best choir of the Peninsula' for himself at a free half-day minicamp where he'll learn some songs and have a blast. Low-key, no-obligation auditions are integrated into the morning; no previous singing experience needed. Boys offered Ragazzi membership start rehearsing in January, 2018. Beginning groups start slow, then grow, meeting once a week for choral singing and theory instruction. Ragazzi's opportunities include singing the National Anthem at a San Francisco Giants game, Opera roles, collaborations with Stanford's choruses and the San Francisco Symphony-and even world-wide touring. SingFest is free, and spots will go fast. Register here Can't make it to SingFest but want to audition? Click here.
Ragazzi Boys Chorus' Music and Movement Classes Open
Mondays, 3:15 & 4:15 sessions, Jan 29 - May 21, 178 Clinton St, Redwood City
Ragazzi Boys Chorus' engaging class for active young boys is now open. It's a great option for boys not quite old enough for Ragazzi's main program. This class is tailored for boys ages 5-7 with little or no previous musical experience. A child-developmental approach fosters boys' creativity and curiosity. Students explore rhythm games, channel their energy through music learning, and learn concepts they can apply in any musical setting. $330 for 15 weeks; sibling discounts. Registration and more info here or contact lspaeth@ragazzi.org, 650-342-8785.


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 would like to make a submission, please contact  Christy Moision , Fairmeadow's eNews editor.

In This Issue
Important Dates
Dec 21 Minimum Day
(1:40 Dismissal)
Dec 22-
Jan 7
Winter Break
Jan 8 School Resumes
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