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Funding excellence
in education

~ March 2017 ~ 
Spring is in the air! And, for Orinda public schools, the Spring season ushers in a season of song, dance and musical performances certain to entice and entertain audiences of all ages! Every Orinda School will showcase student talents this month, so be sure to catch at least one performance!  
See EFO's calendar for details (click here).
And, see below for link to purchase tickets to Miramonte's Spring Musical!  
  Save the Date  
Arts Ambassador Reception
April 19, 2017 4:30pm-6:30pm 
Orinda Arts Gallery  
Mark your calendars for a celebration of art and music education, and a showcase of over 150 individual pieces by Orinda students in grades K-12. Reception will feature live music and a chance to meet the artists. Event is co-sponsored by Lamorinda Arts Council. Stay tuned for more information!   
"Lights, camera, action..."
Learning the craft on stage   
Imagine watching a theater or music performance without a set, without costumes or make-up, and without lights. All of these are essential elements of any stage production. Each helps to visually tie an entire production together. Each helps create an atmosphere, set the mood, control the pace, and enhance the emotion of any performance.

Miramonte added an exciting hands-on class to the Theater Department course selection this year - Stagecraft - that introduces students to all aspects of the production process. Offered to all grade levels, Stagecraft asks students to collaborate and problem solve as they build and design the sets, props, and costumes to accompany Miramonte stage performances. Taught by Heather Cousins, stagecraft is the ideal class for those students who are interested in being part of the creative process, but may not necessarily seek the spotlight itself.

Stagecraft students have an opportunity to work with state of the art technology systems, and this year, thanks in large part to EFO funding, students have learned the ins and outs of a brand new lighting system that is set to debut with the first performance of this year's Spring musical, "The Addams Family". Photographed from left to right are Serena Siow (sophomore), Erin Tarasow (freshman) and Sienna Markey (junior).

The new system has truly revolutionized the role of the lighting tech crew with many functions that were previously adjusted manually now being computer-controlled. In fact, an entire show's lighting can now be programmed on the computer and saved for future reference. Multiple options for colored lighting can now be arranged with the stroke of a keyboard instead of placing colored cells by hand in front of individual lights. The new spotlights are now computer-controlled instead of requiring crew members to climb up a catwalk and operate the lights by hand. And, of course, the new lights are LED and won't need to be changed for another thirty years!
Marvel at the behind-the-scenes work of our creative Stagecraft class: Come and see "The Addams Family"!

"The Addams Family:

A New Musical Comedy"
March 16th & 17th at 7pm
March 24th at 7pm
March 25th at 4pm

Purchase your tickets at  
Miramonte's Web Store!  

Inspired by the popular TV series of the 1960s and later film adaptations,
"The Addams Family" provides plenty of opportunities for laughs as the rather unconventional, and somewhat spooky, Addams clan welcomes their daughter's unsuspecting boyfriend and his conservative family for dinner. You're certain to snap your fingers to their familiar family tune as you revel in the stellar performance.

This year's production is a collaboration between the new musical theater and stagecraft classes and features a live student orchestra and choreography by student Erin Mohr. And, of course, it will all take place under new lights! 
EFO benefits every Orinda student every day!
We invite you to help EFO meet its $1,635,000 pledge for the 2016-2017 school year by making a donation today (click here).

Thank you for your generous support!
Don't forget!

EFO and Parents' Clubs
work together to provide the excellent educational experience that benefits ALL students attending Orinda public schools.

Generations come together to share at Grandparents & Special Friends Day
The California sunshine greeted a record number of guests who arrived at the Del Rey and Glorietta school grounds on January 13th to enjoy a uniquely memorable Grandparents & Special Friends Day!

At Del Rey, guests were welcomed by a special student-created video newscast and cheerful songs from the school choir. Guests and students partnered to create hammered tin hearts that will hang in the Del Rey garden. They also brainstormed what 'peace' means to them, arranging their phrases into a giant peace sign display.

It was really fun! I loved having Nana at my school. Can we please do it every year?  ~ Gia Batshaw, Del Rey student

"My parents felt lucky to have a window into the kids' day in the classroom, and the activities made them feel connected to their grandchildren and to the school. They were so impressed with the teachers, curriculum, use of technology and innovative activities."
~ Melanie Hurley, Del Rey parent
At Glorietta, guests were welcomed by songs and student-written stories about "What Makes Glorietta Great". Many memorable discussions that spanned the generations could be heard throughout the classrooms. Student Council members proudly escorted groups on spirited tours of their school with highlights including music, art, and computer labs.

"We genuinely enjoyed our morning at Glorietta! We had an interesting class discussion about how different the learning environment is from when we were in elementary school, and a wonderful tour of the school. It was so worthwhile to learn more about all of the programs that EFO supports."  
  ~ Grandparents, George and Stephanie O'Haver
"It was fun to have all the grandparents in the classroom with us. I learned that my grandfather's favorite subject in school was English, and that sometimes he was a bad boy!"   
~ Kate Liu, Glorietta student
EFO is pleased to share these wonderful experiences with such important members of our students' families Heartfelt appreciation is due to all those involved in planning this great day - principals, school staff, administration, and volunteers from both EFO and Parents Clubs.
It was definitely a day for the memory books! 
OIS Debate makes their point
The OIS Debate Team has been unstoppable this year! Under the guidance of OIS Debate teacher Terry Eubanks, OIS debaters have won first place at every tournament so far this season. Debate is just one of the twenty-three electives supported by EFO and the Parents Club at OIS. It offers a wide variety of competitions and categories, and helps students gain the confidence to speak in front of large groups of people.
Recently, OIS took home the honor of "First Place School" at the East Bay Debate League Tournament held at Piedmont Middle School on February 4th. Over 140 debaters competed in the event that covered challenging topics ranging from school vouchers and rent regulations, to national service and free trade agreements. Several OIS teams and individual speakers were awarded trophies, including First Place Tournament Gavel to Josh Morganstein.
Debate Team students have found the experience fun and challenging, while appreciating the perspective they gain on the issues. Many look forward to continuing to pursue these interests and hone their speaking talents in high school as members of the Miramonte Debate Team. 

"Debate opens you up to th
e current issues and events affecting our world. You have to look at all the facts, understand both sides of an issue, and ultimately, form your own opinion that may even be different than the side you argued."
  ~ Grace Barmmer,
     OIS 8th grader 

Congratulations to all members of the OIS Debate Team!
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