-eRPDS November, 2021
"The little things? The little moments? They aren't little."
-John Kabat-Zinn
Director's Reflection
Dear Redeemer Community,

Last weekend I was searching through a drawer looking for napkins rings when I stumbled across Thanksgiving treasures from long ago - felt turkeys my boys made to decorate the table, a handprint turkey-tile spoon rest, and a candle holder made from beans and Elmer’s glue. My boys are 22, 20 and 16. Much time has passed since they were little, but it sometimes feels like yesterday that they so proudly brought these treasures home from their preschool days at Redeemer.

Earlier this week, when I came across our 2s lovingly creating feathered turkeys, it truly warmed my heart. Their little hands worked earnestly to dab glue, add eyes, and feather their creations. Each one is unique, marked by the joy and care they put into their creations. Small hands do great work!

I love the relationships I have with my adult children – the conversations we share, meals cooked and celebrated together, but mostly the opportunity for the five of us to be together, which are becoming increasingly rare. It is without a doubt, though, that I miss holding their chubby toddler hands, snuggling up with a story, and being able to fix things with a band-aid. Sometimes I really miss the days when they were little.

As I sorted through that drawer last weekend, I reflected on the small things. As we gather to spend time this Thanksgiving with family and friends, perhaps we should be very purposeful in noticing and being grateful for the small things. They likley aren’t so small.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Best regards,
Office Notes & Upcoming Events
Re-enrollment Forms & Sibling Applications
Re-enrollment forms for returning students and sibling applications for new students are due on December 1. These are not formal contracts, but they do ensure space is reserved for your child.

Thanksgiving Service
We hope to see many of our parents next Tuesday at our Thanksgiving service at 9:15. Please refer to the previously sent email for additional detail. A flyer was also sent home in today's folders.

Standing on Sacred Ground: Antiracism Work in Small Groups
The Church of the Redeemer is organizing a third iteration of the anti-racism course Sacred Ground. Created by the national Episcopal church, the 10-part series invites participants to read and reflect deeply on structures of racism. Using documentary films, as well as Waking Up White by Debby Irving and Jesus and the Disinherited by Howard Thurman, the experience is grounded in small group discussion. Facilitators are parishioners who have taken the course and feel strongly about its potential to change hearts and behaviors. 
Follow the course over 10 months starting on Zoom in December, meeting once a month, or follow the course over 5 months, meeting twice a month. Sign up here.

Redeemer parent, Hillary Shaffer, has completed the course and is happy to serve as a resource. Feel free to email her with questions at hshaffer@bcps.org

COVID-19 Vaccines
If your child received the vaccine, please provide the office with proof of vaccination after the second shot. In the event of an exposure or class shutdown due to a positive case, fully vaccinated members of our community will be allowed to come to school, provided they remain asymptomatic. For those eligible, we encourage you to speak to your health care provider to make an informed decision for your family.
Monthly PDS Value

Being Thankful!
A Fly on the wall...
What's happening in the classrooms?
Kindergarten with Mrs. Smith & Mrs. Vandenberg

We wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving and hope you get to spend lots of quality time together as a family. When we return from our break we will be learning about reindeer and exploring the traditions of Christmas through ornament making and stories. This will be a lot of fun for everyone! In language arts we have learned almost the entire alphabet and their sounds. We will be reviewing all the letters and sounds, how to write the letters, and will continue to sound out words. In math, we will be learning about the “naughty numbers,” the “tricky teens,” and will continue to practice writing the numbers. Please enjoy this precious holiday time with your child and thank you for your continued support!

Find out what is going on in all of our classes.

Program Highlights
It is hard to believe that next week will be Thanksgiving. We have enjoyed spending time this month preparing and reflecting on the many things of which to be thankful. Our Boots for Baltimore drive was a huge success. We are still counting the money, but so far we raised enough money to buy 50 pairs of boots for men and women in need in our own city. The Birthday Book program was launched this week. We are excited to honor student birthdays with fantastic new editions to our library. We were pleased to have our parents in the building for Parent Teacher Conferences and are grateful for the time to connect. Following conferences, the faculty partook in a professional development session titled, "The Seven Assets of Social Competence." Our first graders have been busy making connections with our first grade neighbors at Govans Elementary. After sending an introductory video, they created "Hi Neighbor! posters to exchange with their new friends. We were also treated to an art show, "Autumn Trees", by our kindergarten and art teacher, Wendy Craig. Certainly a highlight of the month was today's surprise visit from the Ravens' Poe to coincide with our Parent Council's online Ravens' auction.