Volume 23 * Issue 13 * November 30,  2017
In This Issue

Stronger together... we lift each other up. We are SERRASTRONG! 
And let us consider how to lift up one another, to love and good works
- Hebrews 10:24


Keeping Christ in Christmas this Advent

This Sunday our Church will begin a new Liturgical year as we celebrate the season of Advent. This is time of great expectation and preparation for the next four weeks, as we ready our hearts for the Birth of Our Lord and His Second Coming. Our theme is to "Keep Christ in Christmas".  Join me in prayer this Sunday as together we begin this joyful journey and let us be alert so that we can see God's presence and Jesus' love as we wait and enjoy His true blessings.

I am hopeful your family will follow our online Advent Calendar. Please check the Living Our Faith page on our website this Sunday for a link to this year's Advent Calendar. 

Signed Beam Now a Permanent Part of SJSC History!
Yesterday was a big milestone for our construction project here at SJSC as the beam signed by our students and staff was placed on the new Student Creation Center. We hope you had the opportunity to watch it live on the Construction Live Stream link on our website. CLICK HERE to view some pictures and video from this exciting event on our campus.
Christmas Accessories in December
Students are invited to show their holiday spirit by wearing Christmas accessories ONLY on the day their grade will be hosting their Christmas party/celebration. Just what are Christmas accessories? Christmas accessories represent the 'flavor' of the holiday season with Snowmen, Angels, Santa Claus, and Reindeer.

Parents are asked to help their children select the appropriate, joyful accessories to wear, using the following guidelines:
  • Students must wear uniform bottoms including belt, if appropriate. (if they have PE, then they must wear their PE shorts)
  • All students must wear shoes that meet the school's dress code.
  • Christmas and Holiday-themed shirts/sweatshirts and socks
  • Christmas and Holiday-themed earrings, bracelets, headbands, bows, ribbons, and rings
  • Christmas and Holiday-themed hats which may have to be removed while in class
  • Wear any make-up (other than that which is outlined in the Parent Handbook for students in the Eighth Grade)
  • Have hair that is dyed, colored, tinted, bleached, and/or painted any color, not even to go with the Holiday season.
All the class Christmas celebrations are taking place December 13-15. You can check the December Parent Calendar on our website for the specific date for your child. 

2018-2019 Intent to Return and New Potential Sibling Survey 
Please look for an important Constant Contact coming next  Wednesday, December 6  regarding Intent to Return and a survey for families interested in applying for a sibling for the 2018-2019 school year. 

Each homeroom was recently sent information on their assigned family for the optional  Adopt-A-Family Outreach Program.  Your gifts will make Christmas truly special for over 200 people who will be eternally grateful for your display of God's love and compassion. CLICK HERE to watch a video about the Adopt-A-Family program. If you are interested in participating, please send in your wrapped gift donation with your child to their classroom  no later than  Friday, December 8 .  

Please contact Carol Lawson at  mandc_lawson@me.com  with any questions regarding the program. Thank you in advance for your kindness! 

Save the Date: Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception Mass
Please join us on Friday, December 8 at 9:30 a.m. in the Muzzy Family Student Activity Center, as we celebrate the feast day of the Immaculate Conception of Mary, a Holy Day of Obligation.  All students in TK - Grade Eight are to wear Formal Uniform that day.

When we take care of those "the least of our brothers" MT 25:31-46, we are honoring Jesus Christ.  This is a good reminder of how we can keep Jesus throughout this Advent and Christmas season.

God is Good All the Time...All the Time God is Good.

Mrs. Angeline Trudell
Mrs. Carol Reiss, Principal Preschool - Grade 2
Mrs. Julie Tipton, Principal Grades 3 - 8
Student Learning Assessments  (Kindergarten - Grade 8 ONLY)
Student Learning Assessments - SLA's/Report Cards are posted on Sycamore (under Documents). Please log on to Sycamore and digitally sign your student's SLA.

If you have lost or misplaced your password, please email your family name, student name, and grade to  passwords@serraschool.org to request a Sycamore username and password.

To access the report card, please log into  https://app.sycamoreeducation.com
  • Click on My Family
  • Click on My Students
  • Click on the Student Code
  • Click on the Documents and select 2017-2018 Grade Card S1 and open
  • Please sign digitally and SAVE
Use of Study Guides in the Learning Process
Based on feedback from some parents, there seems to be misconceptions regarding the role of study guides in the learning process. A study guide is a student tool used to help facilitate learning and comprehension of literature, research topics, history, and other subjects. Its intent is to summarize the important elements of the chapters of a novel or the subject. A study guide is just one resource students may use through the review process to successfully prepare for formal assessments. The other pieces, equally important, can be reading and rereading the chapter or novel being assessed, participating in class discussions, asking and answering questions, and listening to information delivered in class by the teacher. A study guide is not intended to replicate an upcoming test, and there will be questions on a test that are not included in the study guide. The Diocesan Standards demand that curriculum puts an emphasis on critical thinking and knowing where to find information, rather than memorization.  As always, your child's development as a learner is our main focus.  Thank you for partnering with us during this process. 
Please join us as our 8th-grade and 4th-grade students, for their particular concerts, tell us the story of the beautiful Nativity, and ALL students celebrate the Christmas Season with song. This year's Christmas performances will all be held in the Muzzy Family Student Activity Center on the following dates:
  • TK, Kindergarten, and Grade 1 - TOMORROW, Friday, December 1 at 10:00 a.m.
  • Grades 5-8 - Tuesday, December 5 at 7:00 p.m. 
  • Grades 2-4 - Thursday, December 7 at 7:00 p.m.
  • Preschool - Friday, December 15 at 10:00 a.m. 
All students Preschool through Grade 8 should wear their Christmas best! 
We ask that you please abide by the SJSC uniform dress code.  
  • Nice dresses, skirts, or dress pants for girls
  • Nice pants and dress shirts for boys; ties are optional
  • Christmas accessories should be kept to a minimum
  • No shorts, jeans, leggings, or open-toe shoes
Parking for Tomorrow's Performance - Grades TK/K/1
Inner Road: Enter the main parking lot from Banderas via the road near Kindergarten. There will be no access off of Antonio. The Banderas entrance will be marked with a cone and a staff member will be standing near the entrance, so please watch for them and follow their direction.

Neighborhood: We DO NOT have an exemption to the Permit Parking Program on this day, but you are free to park in the neighborhood beginning at 9:00 a.m.

Memorial Care Parking Lot:  NO PARKING in the Memorial Care lot as they will be open for business and need the spaces for their staff and patients.

Parking for Grades 5-8 and Grades 2-4 Evening Performances
Inner Road:  Enter the main parking lot from Banderas via the road near Kindergarten. There will be no access off of Antonio. The Banderas entrance will be marked with a cone/flashing light and a staff member in a reflective vest who will be holding a flashlight. Please watch for them and follow their direction. 

Neighborhood: As the hours of our performances are after the Permit Parking Program, you are free to park in the adjoining neighborhood, but as always, we ask you to please be respectful of our neighbors. 

Memorial Care Parking Lot: Available AFTER 6:10 p.m. We will have a staff member at each entrance to their lot until that time, so please honor Memorial Care's request.

Arrival Times for Evening Performances
For both evening performances, the doors to the Muzzy Family Student Activity Center will open at 6:30 p.m. for open seating. Students in Grades 5-8 who participate in their Christmas Performance will receive non-uniform dress on Wednesday, December 6. Students in Grades 2-4 w ho participate in their Christmas Performance will receive non-uniform dress on Wednesday, December 12.
Students are asked to arrive according to the times listed below:
Christmas Concert Grades 5-8
  • 5:45pm ~ Eighth Grade Nativity actors
  • 6:00pm ~ Bellissima Handbells
  • 6:30pm ~ Serranade Choir and All other students
Christmas Concert Grades 2-4
All students should be in their assigned waiting areas no later than 6:30 p.m.
Pre-concert waiting areas will be opened at 6:15 and are designated as follows:
  • Tiny Trebles meet in KD
  • Serra Singers meet in KC
  • 4th-grade Nativity Play cast meet in the MEC Faculty Room
  • All other students will meet in their PEB homerooms
Dismissal of students:  
In order to safely dismiss students at the conclusion of ALL of the concerts, the students will return to their home rooms following the performances. Parents please remain seated until students have exited the SAC. Mrs. Trudell will then invite parents to pick up their children from the classrooms.

Refreshments will be provided by our PTO for the TK/K/1 concert and both evening concerts outside the SAC. Parents are invited for refreshments after the Preschool concert in the homeroom classrooms.
January 28, 2018
12:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. 


Purchase your tickets today before the discounted price is gone! Spread the word.  All tickets to the event will be $85.00 each after today's deadline.

Vendor Update:
PURCHASE SCRIP WITH YOUR CREDIT CARD for a limited time, for orders totaling $500 or more.  CLICK HERE for a list of available vendors, ordering instructions and delivery schedule. 
SAFEWAY/VONS/PAVILIONS cards are now available, also in re-loadable form if you are using shopwithscrip.com.
PURE BARRE, a local vendor, is discontinued.
SPECIAL DENOMINATIONS now available via weekly order ONLY.  Please feel free to add them to the green weekly order sheet. 
$5 - Barnes & Noble, Panera, Starbucks
$10 - Albertsons, Amazon, Applebee's, CVS, Olive Garden, The Home Depot, IHOP, Outback, Red Lobster, Regal, Target, Walmart
Scrip Lifts UP SJSC:

Scrip gift cards are a wonderful way to support SJSC outreach programs.

  • Adopt-a-Family wish lists were sent out via Room Parent emails.
  • Click Here for the special order form for Season's Luncheon.
Christmas Schedule:
  • Monday, December 4, 8:30 a.m.
  • Monday, December 11, 8:30 a.m. (Last weekly order before Christmas Break)
**shopwithscrip.com Prestopay physical card order.  The delivery schedule for the physical cards ordered directly on shopwithscrip.com via Prestopay is similar to our weekly orders.  Therefore, any physical cards ordered after the cut off of 7:30 a.m. on Monday, December 11 will be processed and delivered AFTER the Christmas Break.  Virtual and Reloadable cards will continue through the break.
  • Wednesday, December 13 (Last daily order before Christmas Break).
  • Daily Sales, 7:40 - 8:30 a.m. will continue through Friday, December 15, but limited to quantity on hand.
Scrip Afternoon Sales - REVISED:
Please note the new time for afternoon sales on Thursdays will be from 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.

For questions on any of the above or to place a Scrip Order, contact Tina Maroutian, Scrip Coordinator at  tmaroutian@serraschool.org  

If you missed the opportunity to donate on Giving Tuesday, here's your chance!
Put your dollars where your heart is! 
The yellow Monthly Envelope goes home the first Thursday of every month, which will be next Thursday, December 7. If you have not yet returned your Monthly Envelope to the school, please do so before  next Wednesday in order to ensure you receive all communication/information from St. Serra that is scheduled to go home in the Monthly Envelope next Thursday.

Our 2017 Santa's Secret Christmas Shop is currently open on campus through Thursday, December 7.  
  • Want to join the fun as one of Santa's Helpers, too?  There are still a few shifts available.  Please e-mail sscsvolunteers@serraschool.org or visit the SSCS VOLUNTEER SIGN UP GENIUS SCHEDULE
  • If you have a student who would still like to participate in this unique shopping experience, please turn in your Santa's Secret Christmas Shop envelopes to your Homeroom Teachers as soon as possible.
  • Questions?  Please contact SSCS Event Chairs Joan Baird and Heather Boyajian at santashop@serraschool.org.
All parents are welcome to attend our next PTO Board Meeting on Thursday, December 7, 9:30 11:30 a.m. at the San Francisco Solano Catholic Church Parish Center (Upstairs Meeting Rooms). Next meeting - Thursday, January 11.  Questions?  Contact us at  serrapto@serraschool.org.
...Where You Will Find The True Heart Of Our School  
This Advent Season let us come together in prayer for the needs and intentions of our community.  Partners in Prayer Ministry members receive a weekly e-mail with prayer requests from families in our community.  Interested in joining this ministry?  Please e-mail Anastacia Escoboza-Henry at partnersinprayer@serraschool.org with a prayer request or to be added to the prayer e-mail list.  For more information, please visit our OUTREACH MINISTRIES webpage.

Friday, December 8, 2017
10:30 - 11:00 a.m. in the SJSC Courtyard
"Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you" (Luke 1:28)
Please join us Friday, December 8, immediately following our St. Junipero Serra Immaculate Conception Mass, for a PTO hosted Parent Coffee Social in the SJSC Courtyard.  5th Grade Room Parents will be providing light hospitality, coffee and water.  We look forward to seeing you there!
'Tis the Season!
Spread good cheer by supporting our SJSC  Chapel ! Gifting made easy with scripsense ...Shop online or purchase Fift cards to make shopping less stressful this year! Over 450 merchants to choose from and you can shop from the comfort of your own home without the crowds! 

Looking for a spot to celebrate Christmas cheer.  Don't forget our Local Merchant program when dining at Hanna's where 10% of anything you eat or drink at Hanna's supports the Chapel fund. No hard cards necessary.  All you need to do is present your mobile device with the  scripsense  Local Merchant icon to your server to scan upon paying your bill.
ELS has openings in both after-school sessions!

Younger students who are struggling with letter recognition, letter sound association, decoding skills, reading fluency, reading comprehension, attention and memory may benefit from this program. Older students struggling with these skills or who lack confidence in their academic skills, have difficulty understanding and/or remembering information, take a long time to complete schoolwork and homework, have limited independent learning skills, and/or benefit from additional academic support can also benefit. 

ELS is a computerized, multi-sensory, interactive program that improves focus, strengthens information processing skills, and enhances a variety of academic skills (e.g., reading decoding, reading fluency, comprehension, vocabulary development, and spelling). ELS provides a fun environment where students strengthen their skills in a game-like format and earn points and prizes for their efforts. Two after-school classes are available:  1:50-2:35 p.m. (for students in Grades K through Two) and 2:50-3:40 p.m. (for students in Grades Three through Eight). Students attend ELS four days per week (Monday through Thursday) for the remainder of this academic year. 

Please e-mail Dr. Lori Quigley  at  lquigley@serraschool.org f or more information or to enroll your child.

Online Student Store
New SJSC LOGO items are available now!
On Tuesday, December 12, 4:00 p.m., the online student store will be closed for year-end inventory count and will reopen on Wednesday, January 3, 2018.
Used Uniforms (Dennis Uniform Label) are Now Available
Beginning Tuesday, December 5, used uniforms will be available for sale from the Student Store front in the School Lobby, during their regular hours as follows:
            Tuesday ................7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.
            Wednesday.............7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.

  • Used clothing accepted are clean, slightly worn and free of animal hair
  • Used clothing items can be turned in for "Family Credit ", to be used for other Used Clothing only
  • Payment of cash, check and credit card is accepted, as well as "Family Credit"
  • See the Student Store Home Page for USED CLOTHING PRICING 
Questions? Contact Student Store Coordinator Catherine Tirado at ctirado@serraschool.org .
Student Council will be selling Santa Grams starting on Monday, November 27 through Wednesday, December 6, 2017.

CLICK HERE for the Santa Gram Order Forms.
  • Santa Grams are $1 each and include a peppermint candy cane as well as a personalized message. If you do not wish to give candy, but would like to give a pencil instead, please indicate "Pencil" on the back of your order form.
  • You may pay with cash or check (payable to St. Junipero Serra Catholic).
  • All payment must be enclosed with your completed forms. Please turn in your orders to the School Office with attention to "Santa Grams".
  • Orders will be accepted until Wednesday, December 6.
  • Santa Grams will be delivered to classrooms the week of December 11. We cannot accommodate individual requests for delivery dates/times.
Thank you for your support,
SJSC Student Council Santa Helpers
As we continue our commitment to STEAM education and look forward to our new facility, we encourage our students to  participate in AFTER SCHOOL STEAM Classes.
4th - 8th grade students are invited to be a part of St. Serra's BEGINNING LEGO Robotics After School Class.   

Powered by the LEGO Mindstorms Education EV3 Base Set and software, students will explore the exciting world of robotics and engineering. Combining the versatility of the LEGO building system and intuitive drag-and-drop programming software, this adventure will have students working in teams, making friends, and creating robots from day one. CLICK HERE for more information. 
4th - 8th grade students with Robotics experience are invited to be a part of St. Serra's LEGO Robotics Intermediate After School Class.   

Students will learn intermediate and advanced features to help them complete more complex challenges with the EV3 Base Set and LEGO Building system. CLICK HERE for more information. 
There is NO AFTERNOON Preschool or TK - Grade 8 Extended Care on    Friday, December 15 . This is a minimum day and the last day of school before Christmas Break. Extended Care will be open the morning of    December 15 . Please plan accordingly!

There are 
NO In-N-Out lunches during the month of December Please plan accordingly. 

CLICK HERE to place your January order. 
CLICK HERE to place your Yearly Order. 
Both January and Annual In-N-Out ordering will close on Friday, December 15 at 3:00 p.m. 
JSerra High School
JSerra High School Admissions
Are you ready to start applying to high schools? Register for the High School Placement Test Review at JSerra on December 2  from 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.  

JSerra offers the High School Placement Test on January 20  and February 3  from 7:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.  Dr. Courtney Harkins will give a talk during each testing session entitled, "My Teen is in High School - Now What?" and campus tours will be available.  

Visit JSerra's Open House on January 21  from 2:00-4:00 p.m., or sign up for a Shadow day to get a more in-depth look at what a day as a Lion is like. 

Santa Margarita Catholic High School Admissions
Attention Parents of 8th-grade students:  All applications to Santa Margarita Catholic High School can be submitted online  here  www.smhs.org/admissions.   If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact the SMCHS Admissions Department at 949-766-6076.
Mater Dei High School Admissions
Mater Dei's Annual Christmas at the Corner event is this  Sunday, December 3 at 5:00 p.m.  on the Mater Dei campus. There will be treats, hot chocolate, caroling, Santa, and performances from Mater Dei Performing Arts groups. The best part...admission is free! For more information, visit the  Christmas at the Corner  webpage on the Mater Dei website.

Applications are now available for the 2018-2019 school year. CLICK HERE for more information about the admissions process, campus tours, the upcoming Performing Arts Fair and more. 
Servite High School Admissions
Come "Discover Servite" at Servite's Open House on  Sunday, December 3 from 12:00 - 4:00 p.m. Servite has sixty years of experience in forming young men into the leaders of  tomorrow.    
  • Speak with current students, teachers, administrators and coaches about what sets Servite apart with the Brotherhood, its unique Formation Program and vision of leadership
  • Tour the campus and facilities, including the newly built Fr. Fitzpatrick Aquatic Center
  • Performances from Tri-School Theatre and demonstrations from the Robotics Team
  • Learn about Scholarships & Tuition Assistance opportunities & much more.
We encourage you to RSVP at  DiscoverServite.com and bring your family and friends!

City of Rancho Santa Margarita
Art Contest ~ New Year's Eve Event

The City of Rancho Santa Margarita is enthusiastically preparing for their "Celebrating Family & Friends" New Year's Eve event, which will take place on Sunday, December 31 from 5:00 - 9:00 p.m. at Central Park. One of the highlights of the event is the Children's Art Contest - which will be displayed in the Bell Tower Community Center.  CLICK HERE for more information on both the Art Contest guidelines and the New Year's Eve event. Flyers are also available in the School Office.