Lafayette Elementary School
Tuesday Bulletin
hsa logo
December 20, 2016
Katya Svirina, Editor
Mark Your Calendar

December 20
Winter Concert

December 21
Holiday Parties

December 22
No School
Winter Break Begins

January 2
No School

January 3
School Resumes

Message from our Principal 
Dear Lafayette Families -

We have three days until we head off into our Winter Break and close out 2016.  It's been quite a year for sure!  We will wrap up the year with our Winter Concert on Tuesday, 12/20 at 1:45 pm and 6:30 pm in the Cafetorium. We will also have our Holiday parties at from 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm on Wednesday afternoon.

A couple of reminders and updates:

*    DCPS policy is that we stay inside for recess (and lineup) if the temperature is below 32 degrees.  We make "the call" for indoor or outdoors in real time.  For example, at 8:15 am we may have to be indoors for lineup, but by 10:30 am the temperature may have risen to 32 degrees and we can go outside for recess.

*    Landscaping and site work is being finished at a frenzied pace.  The plantings are going in all around the school, the bioretention ponds are being finished and the playgrounds are being completed.  I don't have an updated timeline for completion, but will share when it is available.

*    Office Hours - Beginning in January, "office hours" will be every other Friday from 7:30 am - 9:00 am.  I will set up a sign-up genius if you wish to sign up for a time slot.   Thanks to everyone who completed the Doodle poll - this was the overwhelmingly popular timeslot.  As always, I'm always available for a conversation or meeting.  Don't hesitate to reach out via email and we will set up a conversation.

*    Informances - our grade level "informative" performances (Informances) will be playing out over the course of the winter and spring.  PreK will be hosting its International Festival in January. Second Grade will be hosting an Inventor Wax Museum, Third Grade will be hosting the DC Theater CafĂ©, and Fourth Grade will be hosting a State Fair. The dates to be announced in January when we return from break. Kindergarten and Fifth grade are finalizing their informances and will announce the titles and dates when we return.

*    HSA General Meeting - January 12th from 7 pm - 9 pm.  This meeting will host our 2nd Annual Camp Fair as well as our 2nd Annual Budget discussion.  We hope to see everyone there!

*    In case of inclement weather, be sure to check the DCPS homepage, or Twitter feed.  I will also send a Robocall as soon as I know about a closure or a delay.  You can also tune in to local news stations.  

*    If your child is absent, please email your child's teacher AND  Please be sure to include your child's first and last name, dates of absence(s) and reason for absence.  Thanks for your support in keeping our attendance accurate!

Please travel safely, give kindness, and enjoy the spirit of the season.  We will see everyone in 2017!

Happy Holidays,
Dr. B
HoopEd Winter Break Camp

Kids will have a blast with All Sports and Games at Lafayette December 26-30 and January 2nd (partial week registration available)!

Go to to register for some great days of fun for the kids!
The Scholastic book fair on December 5-9 was a tremendous success!     

A huge thank you to the many parents, staff and friends of Lafayette who helped. Together, we sold over $17,800 worth of books and merchandise! Thanks to your support, over $2,000 of books have been added to our library and classrooms!
teaching peace logo PEACE OF MIND NEWSLETTER   

The December 2016 Peace of Mind Newsletter is now available! Happy reading!

Bear Facts    

The reporters of Bear Facts are thrilled to announce the return of Lafayette's newspaper, now available online! Students have been busily covering the news and sports that matter to Lafayette.

Please, visit to enjoy their hard work!
Computer Science Education Week

The week of December 4-10 was Computer Science Education Week and we held two fun events to help celebrate!

Cookies and Coding
took place on December 3. Over 250 students and parents attended this event rotating through three different coding activities including: Spheros (robotic balls that you program using an app on an iPad), (a website that utilizes block-based coding to teach programming concepts), and an Unplugged Activitiy (physical activities that teach coding concepts). I would like to thank all of the volunteers from the HSA as well as our Amazon Web Services partner Patricia Davis-Muffett, Senior Leader of Global Public Sector Marketing; and our Microsoft partner, Allyson Knox, Director of Education Policy and Programs. In addition, I would like to thank all of the DC Public school folks who showed up including Dewayne McClary, Director of Educational Technology and Sakon Kieh, Specialist of Elementary Educational Technology. Lastly, I would like to thank all of our staff volunteers including David Gregal, Annie Campbell, Steven King, Eden Mesghenna, and Rachel Leese, we couldn't have done it without you! The event was such a success that the district will be pushing similar events district-wide next year!
The second event, The Hour of Code took place on December 9 . All students in grades K-5 had volunteers from Amazon Web Services come to their classrooms to spend one hour learning how to code using the site I would like to extend a great deal of gratitude to Patricia Davis-Muffett, our Amazon Web Services partner for all of her help and for providing over 20 volunteers! The volunteers not only facilitated The Hour of Code in the classrooms but also led discussions and explained and emphasized the importance of coding.

To learn a little bit more about the Hour of Code, click on the link to this video.  

Students are encouraged to continue using their accounts at home and in school. In order for your child to access their account they must first go to the Lafayette Tech page, then go to the link for from the home page, click on the picture of their teacher, then their name and finally enter their password. If students forget their passwords please feel free to email me for a reminder. Happy coding!

Nathan Wieand
Technology Coordinator


Congratulations to the Girls and Boys Lafayette  Bears Basketball Teams  who netted 3 victories between themselves last week. The Girls team is off to a spectacular start, going 2-0 so far in the season. They beat Eaton and Janney at home last week and play Shepherd on the road this  coming Tuesday  to close out the pre-holidays part of the season. The girls won a closely fought battle against Eaton 14-9. They then turned around  and  beat Janney by significant margins the very next day 30-9. It was a wonderful team effort and a testament to the strong defense of the Bears that forced lots of turnovers and scoring opportunities.  It should be an exciting game this afternoon. Shepherd plays their home games at Brookland Elementary which is located at 1401 Michigan Avenue NE,  so please come out and cheer the Lady Bears on!

The Boys team played Whittier last Thursday and put on a very impressive performance. All the players on the team saw some good playing time and played well together. Their record is now 1-1 and they play on the road for their next two games at Shepherd and Brightwood in January when they return from break.
The Bears Basketball teams want to thank all the teachers, students and parents who come out to support them at their games and Laffy, the 2017 Lafayette Spirit Bear. They especially want to thank the LAP kids who do a great job cheering on the teams at each game.  The coaches and kids really appreciate all the support they have been given by the Lafayette community and look forward to a winning and fun second half of the season in 2017 when we come back from break. The players want to wish Coach Hover, Coach Johnson, Coach McCants and Coach Jordan Happy Holidays and a Joyous New Year and want to thank them for all their hard work and encouragement. They also want to remind folks about the Basketball Team toy drive. Please drop an new unwrapped toy in the bin by Officer V's desk in the front of the school. The team will be accepting donation through Wednesday's practice. Go Bears!
Spelling Bee Spelling Bee

Preparation for this year's spelling is well underway!  Practices continue to be held every day during Flex Time for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students.  The Spelling Bee is scheduled for January 13th  (January 18th make up) at 1:30 in the cafeteria.  All are invited to attend or watch the Bee LIVE as it is streamed over YouTube. 

Attached are the Spelling Bee Practice Schedule, Spell It 2017 Tips and Tricks Spelling Guide, Spell it Plain Text List, and the 2017 School Spelling Bee List.  A special thank you to all of the teachers who have been volunteering their time and effort for practices!
graphic-summer-park.jpg Save the Date: 2017 Camp Expo, January 12, 2017!

SAVE THE DATE!  The 2017 Second Annual Summer Camp Expo will be held at Lafayette from 7:00-9:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 12th!  Lafayette families and the Lafayette community are invited to join us to meet and greet representatives from summer and sleep-away camps at this fun, and sometimes interactive, fair. 

The Expo will take place immediately following the HSA Budget meeting.  There will be camps, activities, food, fun and fellowship, so drop by to learn about the wonderful offerings that are available for your little (or older) munchkins. 

Take advantage of early-bird enrollment and save big $$! Get an early peek at which camp programs you can bid on at our March auction! So bring the whole family and tell your neighbors.  If you have a camp you love and would like to spread the word, please have them contact Julie Chen to reserve a spot.  Spaces are still available.  We are also looking for a few volunteers to help set-up and clean-up.  
We look forward to seeing you there!
Community Service Fair on MLK Day

Mark your calendars for a Community Service Fair at Lafayette from 1:00-3:00 on MLK Day, January 16th! All Lafayette students and their families are invited to join us for this drop-in event where kids will have an opportunity to participate in a variety of hands-on activities to support worthy organizations in the DC area.

Please click here to RSVP and contribute the necessary supplies. We're currently seeking middle and high-school students to help set-up, clean-up and facilitate the activities. If you know of students who would like to earn community service hours, or who would just enjoy the chance to help, please have them contact
Katie Burke . We look forward to joining together as a school community to raise awareness around the needs faced by others, and to contribute in a meaningful way.

Need help over the winter break?  Deal 7th grader, Lafayette alumna, and American Red Cross trained, parent helper available. Please email Aicha Sanogo at

Mark your calendars for January 14!!! Spend an hour (or MORE!) celebrating the arts at  CREATE DC!
The Create DC Arts Festival is bringing together a vibrant network of DCPS arts teachers, teaching artists, and local arts organizations for an afternoon of creative play on Saturday, January 14 from 11-3 at Union Market's Dock 5. Families across the city are invited to join us in experiencing the visual arts, drama, dance, and music through hands-on interactive workshops and collaborative making stations as we celebrate the arts. All are welcome

Thanks to our Sponsors:
Submissions for next week's issue should be emailed to Submissions are due by 9:00 p.m. on Sundays. Submissions received after this time will be included in the following issue, unless instructed otherwise. Please keep submissions brief. Longer articles may be truncated at the editor's discretion, with a link to the full text. 

Shannon Behm & Chris Lisi, Lafayette HSA Co-Presidents
Lafayette Elementary School