Happy New Year, and welcome back! I hope all Bel Aire families are enjoying a peaceful start to 2020 and a smooth re-entry into school (and all those other responsibilities we sometimes pause during a long break). To help get you and your family off to a positive start to 2020, please take a look at the following:

Bel Aire Staff is Ready for 2020!
As you know, Bel Aire teachers returned a day earlier than students to engage in some meaningful professional development and important preparations. Sometimes families wonder what we do on a “Staff Day” or a “Teacher Work Day,” so here’s a little glimpse of January 6, 2020:

In the morning, we gathered as a school to talk about ways we can ensure every single Bel Aire student is receiving appropriate levels of support and establishing strong connections . As part of this process, we literally looked at lists of all 430 Bel Aire students and held follow-up conversations in our grade-level teams. In the afternoon, teachers spent time preparing for the return of students.

New Playground Update
Thank you to all of the families who contributed to the Foundation for Reed School's Raise the Paddle event last spring. At the event, Bel Aire requested donations to modernize our playground equipment. This fall, we discovered that prior to replacing the structure itself, we need to begin with some unforeseen structural renovations, including a new retaining wall. Rest assured, we have not abandoned the project or repurposed the generous donations, however progress has been delayed due to this larger infrastructure project. In the meantime, the current structure is safe and in use. I will continue to share information as I receive it.

Please Join Us in The Great Kindness Challenge 2020!
As part of our continued effort to build the ‘ C ,’ ‘ E ,’ and the ‘ R ’ in C.L.E.A.R. ( collaboration , empathy , and resiliency ), Bel Aire is again joining millions of students in thousands of schools in over 100 countries , in the Great Kindness Challenge (TGKC). TGKC is an annual, one-week challenge that encourages all members of our school community to complete as many purposeful acts of kindness as possible . As schools and families around the world participate in TGKC, we want to contribute to the ripple effect we hope is felt across our community, our country, and beyond. 

Families play a critical role in our efforts to spread kindness, and as such, I would like to encourage all families to join the Great Kindness Challenge - Family Edition . Participation is fun, simple, and free. If the week of Jan 27 - Jan 31 doesn’t work for your family, pick a better week; acts of kindness can continue year-round!
 
Using a 50-item family checklist , families are challenged to complete as many acts of kindness as possible over the course of the week. To facilitate your participation, please consider these additional resources and inspiration: 


According to TGKC site, at the heart of this project is “the belief that kindness is strength . We also believe that as an action is repeated, a habit is formed . With TGKC checklist in hand, students have the opportunity to repeat kind act after kind act. As kindness becomes a habit, peace becomes possible .”   

And if you’re wondering: yes, there is science supporting the belief that kindness improves our happiness , relationships , self-esteem , and health

With that, please join us for this important event. And if you do, please share your experience with us (via email or in person). I would love to hear family stories and see pictures from this fun and fulfilling event. 

Sincerely,

Lexie Cala
Principal, Bel Aire Elementary