TUSD Weekly Update
"Every kid is just one caring adult away from being a success story." ~Josh Shipp
Farm Update
Laura Brem, Coordinator of Applied Horticulture and Environmental Studies
Harvest is in full swing at the farm, and the flowers, fruits and vegetables are making their way daily to school sites! Pitman and Turlock High School Culinary Arts and Foods classes are utilizing the fruits and vegetables in their salsa labs and baking assignments. Raw produce is being turned into savory, sweet, or spicy dishes and sides! Yum! The floral and ornamental horticulture classes are taking advantage of the remaining sunflowers, zinnias and wildflower by using them to learn about floral design and seed saving techniques. My personal favorite, pumpkin harvest, is underway as the Farm Management students helping cut hundreds of pumpkins off the vine and get them into the truck - it is always fun to see who can find the biggest, smallest, ugliest, and/or most colorful pumpkin in the patch!

Stay tuned next time to hear how the elementary and middle school students are taking advantage of the farm as a learning lab! We have a lot of exciting farm visits planned for the month of September!

Reminder to join us on Saturday, October 13th from 1pm-5pm for our first Harvest Festival! There are lots of fun activities planned, and a great opportunity to see the farm first hand!

Keep updated on TUSD Farm activities and events by joining us on Instagram @TUSDFarm.
Toolbox Breathing Tool
Jennifer Carlsen and Darrah Wilson, Student Support Clinicians
What’s In Your TOOLBOX?
This week, we would like to introduce you to the first (and arguably most important) tool in our TOOLBOX- Breathing Tool. Now, you might think you know how to breathe… but do you really? Do you pay attention to your breath, monitoring its depth, pace, and effects on your body? In times of stress, do you use deep breathing to calm yourself? Taking a moment to pay attention to our breath, and teaching our students to do the same can have an incredible impact. 

Put your hand palm down on your desk, fingers spread out. Carefully trace each finger with the index finger of your opposite hand. As you go up each finger, breathe in, and as you go down each finger, breathe out. Go as slowly as possible, paying attention to your lungs and body.

Talk with your students about examples of people they have seen taking deep breaths, like: Singers, before performing a song, Baseball pitchers, before they throw, Celebrities, before giving a speech. You can also talk with them about opportunities to use breathing to be calm or patient, like: While waiting in line, when feeling angry or afraid, before taking a test, when trying to go to sleep at night.

Resources to Learn More and Practice:
Apps: Calm, Insight Timer
Books: Breathe Like a Bear by Kira Willey, Sitting Still Like a Frog by Eline Snel
Other Resources: Coping Skills for Kids
Mindful Kids Cards: 50 Activities for Calm, Focus, and Peace (available on Amazon)
Student Rep to School Board Reports
Henry Wooley, Turlock High School
  • We are super proud of Turlock High School graduate Kevin Kramer on being called up to the “show” and becoming a Pittsburgh Pirate!
  • Last Saturday the THS Choir co-presented an All-Day Youth Harmony Workshop with the Golden Valley Chorus. Students from all over the county will have the opportunity to come together at THS to learn a handful of barbershop songs and perform them that afternoon for parents, friends, and community members. Students also had a chance to hear professional quartets and sing with them as section leaders and clinicians. 
  • We recently hosted our 2nd annual Unity Week. We started the week celebrating what makes us unique, signed a Unity Pledge, shared words of kindness with kindness bracelets, and finished up with a very successful Club Rush on Friday with over 40 clubs out at lunch sharing and recruiting!
  • Homecoming preparations are now underway and our theme is Pop Culture. Homecoming will be on Friday, September 28th. THS Idol sign ups also started last week and we are planning a Battle of the Sexes/Powder Puff which will be happening the week of September 17th.

Gabrielle Sotomayor, Pitman High School
  • Pride Ambassadors were assigned to their permanent freshmen homeroom class. On their first visit, they shared their own high school experiences, emphasized the importance of getting involved, and pointed out various resources on campus such as the Career Center.
  • Club Rush was held on August 24 at the amphitheater and over 32 clubs and 7 proposed clubs were in attendance.
  • On August 27, FFA hosted a BBQ after school for all students involved in the program.
  • Nominations and voting for Homecoming King and Queen were recently held. ASB staff is looking into curbing campaigning for candidates in the future. Homecoming week is September 10-14
  • ASB elections were also recently held and in addition to the usual positions a new one—school mascot—was added.
Coaches Corner
Robin Swartz, Instructional Coach
What is the Relationship Between Healthy Eating and School Attendance?

Because healthy students not only excel academically but also are more likely to be engaged positively in social, community, and extra-curricular activities, the benefits of supporting student health, nutrition, and physical fitness are far-reaching. Rigorous research confirms the clear connection between health status and academic achievement. We know that:

  • Healthy children miss fewer days of school, are more attentive, and are better behaved.
  • Healthy children are more successful in school, and are more likely to graduate from high school and go to college.
  • Health disparities contribute to the achievement gap.
  • Children with health insurance are more likely to get the health care they need. The result is healthier, more attentive, and higher-performing students in the classroom.

Students need to start each day with a healthy breakfast-at home or school. It will provide energy (i.e., calories) for whatever activities lay ahead!

Source: Health, Nutrition, and Physical Fitness (Strategy No. 7 in A Blueprint For Great Schools report from the Transition Advisory Team dated August 9, 2011.)
School Spotlight: Brown
We’re visiting Brown Elementary School! Here are some facts about their school:
Est. 1983
Principal: Nicole Aviles
Assistant Principal: Elise Baldoni
32 Teachers 
36 Classified Staff 
609 Students 
Mascot: Bobcat
Motto: Be Respectful, Be Responsible, Be Safe
Fun Fact: Walter M. Brown served the Office of the Clerk for the City of Turlock!

Professional Learning Communities in full effect today at Brown Elementary School. 4th and 5th grade teachers reviewed data on a recent assessment and are busy planning next week’s interventions and enrichments. Shout out to Ed Mann for incorporating technology into his math instruction with student-produced Flipgrid videos. Teachers shared that each year students have been getting progressively better at Common Core Math which is great news!
Which one of these original 1983 staff members still works at Brown Elementary School?
CTE in the Community
Bistro 234
2018 Pitman High School graduate Nestor Olivares participated in an internship with Bistro 234 while enrolled in Mohini Singh’s Culinary Arts program. He is now employed there part-time and is continuing his education at Modesto Junior College. Thank you to Chef Leroy Walker and Mohini Singh for your outstanding support of our CTE students!
The US in TUSD
Meet Sharon Mendes
How long have you worked in TUSD?  33 years
What is your job title? Bus Driver
Where did you work prior to TUSD? TUSD was my first job.
Any info you would like to share about your job? Average day? Some days can be very challenging!

Things you are most proud of? My family and my grand-kids.

Challenges? Working with students who can use some understanding.

Favorite memory/story? I once had a kindergartner I picked up for school. There was a lot of frost and frozen ice on the ground. He got on the bus and said to me, “I got to wear socks today.” It just broke my heart.
What are you reading? The Baker’s Secret about when Germany invaded Normandy.

Any favorite shows you’re watching on TV? I’m not a big TV person

Anything surprising we may not know about you? I like to go fishing

Any personal stuff you’d like to share? I have a lot of hobbies including racing homing pigeons, making quilts, painting, making jams, and working in the garden.
The 411
Seen on Social Media
Pumpkin harvest underway at the TUSD Farm Follow the TUSD Farm on Instagram!
Trivia is Back!
Pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins!
Counting down to the TUSD Farm Harvest Festival we will have a weekly trivia related to the TUSD Farm!

Click HERE to play!
Share Your Awesome!

Marie Russell
Chief Communication Coordinator

We would love to have ALL staff help share our TUSD story to the world, but if that is not really your thing, just click on link below to download an opt-out form and return to "Marie Russell, D.O." via district mail.