Vol. 10, Iss. 3
January 23, 2020

Dear Parents,

Last Friday, we were excited to have Ben Franklin himself join us to speak to the students, visit classrooms and even eat lunch to help celebrate his birthday. If you haven't seen some of the fun pictures from his visit, be sure to check out our public Facebook page or Instagram!
Tomorrow morning from 7-8 a.m., the CEC is hosting our annual Donuts for Dads event. We invite all students and their favorite guy (dad, grandpa, uncle, brother or friend) to come and have a light treat before school starts. This is always a fun event and will be busy, so plan accordingly. Students should stay in the gym until 7:45 a.m., then can start heading to their classroom. As always, students should be in their classroom by 8:10 a.m.
Please mark your calendar for Parent Teacher Conferences which will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 11 and Thursday, Feb. 13. Priority sign-ups for K-4 parents who met and logged their volunteer quota for the year, will be released on Monday, Jan. 27. All other sign-ups will be distributed by teachers on Wednesday, Jan. 29. Parents in grades 5-8 will have drop in conferences, similar to years past.
Thank you to the Student Council for hosting and providing dinner at  the Skate City socials. I was able to attend the middle school social, and was sorry to miss the K-5 night due to the monthly Board meeting. But, I heard that everyone had a great time and I can't wait to skate with the kids again!
Student Council also rolled out a new "House System" in middle school last week. See the article below for more details. The students are excited to get to work together to support their new "house." I'm looking forward to seeing how our students shape this program, and I especially love that the houses are themed after our Founding Fathers. 
Congratulations to both the A and B girls basketball teams. Both teams are undefeated after their first three games. They play at Southeast Christian this afternoon. Go Bolts!

Have a great weekend! 

Diana Simpson

We hope our Dads will be able to attend  Donuts with Dad from 7 - 8 a.m. TOMORROW, Jan. 24, at BFA . We still need volunteers to make this event a success, so we hope some of our terrific parents will sign up to help out!

Today is the last day to purchase tickets for the 2020 Sweetheart Ball - Night in Gotham City. No tickets will be sold at the door.  Calling all BFA boys and their "special" adult to a super "Night in Gotham City" to enjoy some dancing, games, light snacks and dessert. Get silly in the superhero photo booth and capture the moments you want to remember.
Everyone is encouraged to dress as their favorite superhero, and we'll have a prize for the best costume!  Costumes should follow the spirit of our Dress of Choice guidelines. Please no revealing/offensive clothing, full-face masks, costumes with pretend blood/gore, or pretend weapons.  It's guaranteed to be a SUPER night.
Event Details:
When: 6-8 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 25
Where: BFA
How Much: A ticket pair is $20, and an extra single ticket is $5. 
Every ticket includes a slice of pizza!
Next Steps: Get your tickets via 
MySchoolBucks  TODAY. NO tickets sold at the door.
Please  Lynsey Humphries, PTO social coordinator,  if you have questions or would like to help with putting on this fun event.  To volunteer before, during, or after this fun event please visit our SignUpGenius.

Field day
Field day is still a few months away but we're getting ready now.
The PTO is providing field day t-shirts for  all BFA students in grades K-8. But we need to know what size to order for your student(s). Please complete this Google Form and the PTO will handle the rest. If you have more than one K-8 student at BFA, please complete one form per student.

As announced in the middle school newsletter last week, we recently  implemented an important new program to enhance and strengthen BFA's middle school culture. Every student in sixth through eighth grade was invited to a pep assembly where they were randomly sorted into houses (think Harry Potter). The Student Council has been working hard during the last couple of months planning and preparing to implement this program at BFA. 
The goal of a house system is to bond the student body across grade levels, to give every student ownership in their role at BFA, and to provide opportunities for leadership and positive rivalry. Each and every middle school student is now a part of something bigger than him or herself, and they all have a place in the school. 
Student Council worked to create houses that align more closely with our school's concept. There are four houses: Washington house, Adams house, Jefferson house, and Madison house. Each house is associated with three of Ben Franklin's virtues and has a house mascot. Each teacher is also affiliated with a house so that bonds can form across grade levels and there is a stronger sense of community among the middle school.
Going forward, we intend to hold house competitions and pep assemblies. There will be plenty of opportunities for students to get involved in the school and to demonstrate leadership and school spirit. We hope that this house system improves our incredible middle school by giving all students a sense of pride and ownership in their school and their group. 
Special thanks to our Student Council and their advisor, Ms. Poleschook, for their hard work designing this new concept for the middle school.

kids heart challenge
A message from the American Heart Association...

Last week we kicked off our Kids Heart Challenge and your student(s) has probably told you all about the Heart Heroes and their healthy messages already! We sent home envelopes explaining the program and how your student(s) can participate, if they choose. There are several ways to participate, including through our website and app. You and your child(ren) can take healthy pledges and help raise donations to support heart health research through The American Heart Association!
There are so many ways to participate that we created some videos to help you understand it all! Watch How To Register Online to find the easiest way to participate - and INSTANTLY earn a FREE wristband!
Did you know your Heart Hero key chains and your "Make A Hero" sticker comes to life in our app? See how to interact with them HERE. Download our Kids Heart Challenge app  through the  App Store  for iPhone or  Google Play  for Android.
Take the challenge TODAY and challenge others to be healthy and fight off heart disease!

jungle book fair
The 'jungle' is coming to BFA in the form of our spring Book Fair! We're so excited to be able to offer you and your student(s) new books at discounted prices. This time, Book Fair set up will be Feb. 6, and student preview day will be Feb. 7. Sales will begin Monday, Feb 10, and run through Thursday, Feb 13. Please keep in mind, we fund new purchases for the library with money earned from book fairs; it's a win/win--you get discounted books and the library receives enough funds to pay for books our kids can check out throughout the school year.
A couple important things to note...the library will be closed to students trying to check out/return books on Feb. 6 and 7 . In addition, it's important that you do not leave small children unaccompanied in the library during parent teacher conferences  (or it really will become a jungle!). Library staff and volunteers are too preoccupied with their work to watch children while you are in conferences, and it becomes a safety concern for the children. To that end, we're happy to announce that students from National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) will provide FREE baby-sitting during conferences again this year. Additional details will be available in future newsletters.
We hope you'll visit the Book Fair during one of the following times:
  • Monday, Feb.10, and Wednesday, Feb. 12 - 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Feb. 11 and Thursday, Feb. 13 - 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4 to 8 p.m.
Once again we will be offering e-wallet so that parents don't have to worry about sending cash, check or credit card; watch this video to find out more.
The scholastic homepage is a good resource and, if you're like us and you can't get enough Book Fair information, you can watch a Book Fair video (click on your child's grade level). 

Student Council is hosting a winter formal for middle schoolers. Join us from 6 - 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 8, for a night of fun and dancing. Suggested attire is formal wear, but you can come in whatever feels comfortable. Tickets are available to current BFA middle school students for $5 each if you purchase through MySchoolBucks by end of day on February 6. Tickets will be $10 at the door. Dinner will not be served at the dance, so make sure your student grabs something beforehand, but there will be a dessert bar and hot cocoa. 

hearing and vision
BFA will conduct our annual hearing and vision screenings for grades K,1,2,3,5 and 7, as well as for new BFA students, on Monday Feb. 3, and Tuesday, Feb. 4. It is important to note that this is a screening, not a complete exam. If your student wears prescription glasses or contacts, it is necessary that he/she wear them during the screening.
You will receive a letter if your student does not pass the screening. Students with concerns should be evaluated by a health care professional. Please take the letter to your appointment and have the provider complete the bottom of the form, then return it to the health office.
Colorado Department of Education Standards for hearing and vision are available online.
Please contact the Health Room if you have questions or concerns about your student.

PTO Trucker Hat
The PTO's spirit wear store is opening for one month beginning February 1. If you or your student need a new BFA t-shirt, hoodie, or other BFA spirit wear, or spirit items, your chance is coming! Please visit the store on  MySchoolBucks to place an order. The store will close again in March--so get your items TODAY. 

All items will be delivered to the classroom and sent home with your student.

Original Works
If you love Original Works items, we have some good news for you! New orders can be placed through the Original Works eStore either from the artwork image used during the Fall 2019 Original Works program, or from other artwork or photos of your choice that you can easily upload to the eStore. Orders are due by February 28; see flier for additional details. Original Works will process the orders, and then conveniently ship them directly to your home.

Do you have friends interested in a preschool that uses the Core Knowledge Sequence and offers a nurturing environment and individualized instruction to ensure your little one is ready for Kindergarten? If so, please let them know that enrollment for the BFA preschool is open to the general public NOW via the BFA website. Interested parents need to complete an Intent to Enroll form; there is no guarantee of placement as all spots are first come, first served. For more information, interested parents can  email  our Preschool Director,  Kristen Goldberg .
Thursday, Jan. 23

Geographic Bee
The Geography Bee will be held at 2:35 p.m. today, Jan. 23, in the Thunder Gym. Two kids from each grade, 4-8, will participate in the Bee. Good luck to all the participants!

The School Advisory Committee (SAC) will meet from 4:30 - 5:30 p.m. today, Jan. 23, in the Conference Room. 

Ben's Brigade will meet from 8 - 9 p.m. tonight, Jan. 23, at Lansdowne Arms in Highlands Ranch. All BFA dads are welcome to attend!
Friday, Jan. 24

Donuts with Dad is from 7 - 8 a.m. Friday, Jan. 24, at BFA. We hope our BFA dads, favorite uncles or grandpas will be able to attend!
Saturday, Jan. 25

Calling all BFA boys and their "special" adult to a super "Night in Gotham City" from 6-8 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 25, at BFA.  Everyone is encouraged to dress as their favorite superhero, and we'll have a prize for the best costume!  NO tickets sold at the door.
Wednesday, Jan. 29

fourth grade
Fourth grade parents are invited to celebrate Broadway musicals past and present as their students put on an entertaining and educational revue at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 29. We hope to see you at this show to learn all about the incredible history and evolution of American musical theater. 
Additional Upcoming Events: BFA Calendar
Middle School:  Athletics 
Ben Franklin Academy
2270 Plaza Drive
Highlands Ranch, CO 80129
Main Office: (720) 383-4519 info@bfacademy.org 
Attendance: (720) 432-9239 attendance@bfacademy.org 
Fax: (303) 974-1738
Our mission is to create young adults with character like America's founding Renaissance man, Benjamin Franklin: well-read, scientifically curious, and civically engaged.
Our students will excel academically through a challenging, sequenced curriculum that emphasizes math, science, and literacy. We will be a data driven institution, focusing on individual students. Our students, teachers, parents, staff, and leaders will be held accountable for the success of our school. Finally, we recognize that an education is incomplete without fostering the arts, sports, nature, and character.
Temperance, Silence, Order, Resolution, Frugality, Industry, Sincerity, Justice, Moderation, Cleanliness, Tranquility, Purity and Humility.