Dear Good Shepherd families,
Here is a little information as we look toward the Christmas break:
A child’s life is full of so many transitions and one of the most exciting is starting kindergarten. Mrs. Weiser is meeting with small groups of preschoolers this week in their own classrooms to assess their readiness for kindergarten. Mrs. Vaccaro and Ms. Lorenz will be assisting her. We will be sending acceptances to kindergarten upon our return from Christmas break.
On a similar note, our preschool teachers are hard at work on their own observations of their students. We adopted a new software program for assessments for our preschool team and the teachers are working on making observations, collecting data and recording their work. It is always rewarding to see the developmental leaps (small and large) that children make from entering school in August to now. These assessments will be shared with parents in January.
Educators often speak of the importance of SEL - or social emotional learning - which has been a focus here at Good Shepherd for years. Our Toolbox program is what we use on the K-5 campus and we are sharing different tools with you each week so that you are familiar with the language. Different classrooms introduce the tools at various times, but all students become familiar and hopefully begin to incorporate the tools in their own lives. This week we wanted to share the Listening Tool - I listen with my ears, eyes and heart. Listening with your heart is key to building relationships and conflict resolution. Learning to listen, really listen, builds our empathy muscles. When we stop to breathe (see last week), the ability to listen to what we are saying to ourselves and each other becomes easier.
Gift Card Drive
We are collecting $25 or $50 gift cards for the North Marin Community Services. The organization uses the gift cards to even out the gifts for the 200 North Marin families that they are helping this year. To find out more information go to their website here. You may drop them off in the drop off line or stop outside the front office and we will send them onto NMCS. Thank you for your support.
Reminder, first semester ends on December 17th. Please check in with your teacher(s) if you have questions with grades, assignments, etc.
Finally, we will be holding another Coffee with the Directors (on Zoom again) on Tuesday, December 15 at 9:00 am. We hope to answer any questions you have and share news from the different classrooms. We will be sending an email with a link closer to the date. We hope you will join us. As much as it is frustrating not to be able to meet in person, we want to stay connected to our Good Shepherd community.
We still have room in our Preschool Holiday Camp! This will help you with that holiday shopping! Care will be available from Monday, December 21st through Wednesday, December 23rd. Our camp hours will be either 9-12:30 or 9-3. To assist with staffing and planning, we are asking families to sign up for the 3 day block, not one day at a time. We need all registration forms by Friday, December 11. We have lots of fun projects planned for camp! We hope you can join us.
We are grateful to be together, to be healthy and to have our Good Shepherd community. May the peace of the season be with you.
Laura Fitzpatrick & Kristin Lorenz
Upper School Director & Lower School Director