The Nest, April 19th, 2017

Mark Your Calendars

Date/Time Event
4/22/17 Saturday, 10-12PM Greening work day
4/25/17 Tuesday, Picture Day - Look for Lifetouch packets
4/26/17 Wednesday, 5:30-7PM STEAM Night!
5/4/17 Thursday, 6-7:30PM Last PTA Meeting of the Year. Come Celebrate! With Student DJs!
5/6/17 Saturday, 10–12PM SAVE THE DATE—Kinder Welcome + SK/Stanford Alumni Greening Collaboration + Clean Schoolyard Trash Pick Up
5/13/17 Saturday, 9-11:30AM SKATE DAY at Church of Eight Wheels
5/25/17 Thursday 10AM 5th Grade Promotion Ceremony

Spring Fling was amazing!  Thanks to everyone who came to celebrate Starr King and our amazing teachers at Spring Fling on Saturday, April 15 at the Verdi Club!  We had another great year for coming together and having fun.  We achieved our goal of matching last year by raising over $85,000 for the school, including the Teachers’ Fund (a fund dedicated to supporting initiatives that our teachers want)!  So many people made it happen -- thank you!  Just to name a few -- huge thanks to Grace Kao, who again led the effort with a smile, to David and Eszter Matheson, who made the space so beautiful, and to Angeline Yeo, Nancy Hom, Michela Rossi, Adam Wiscomb, Tessa Lee, Pennan Barry, Suzy Chen-Harding, Sean Tao, Sherry Lin, Kristin Fong, Mike Lin, Troy McKeown, and many others for their hard work.

Greening Work Day  - Please come lend a hand tidying up the yard as part of our series of micro work 115.days to finish out the year.  This Saturday, 10a-12n, we’ll be doing a big clean-up of the Carolina Street side, trash pick-up around the yard and some weeding.  Bring gloves if you have them.  Kids welcome, snacks provided!

STEAM night with the After-School Program -- STEAM = Science, Tech, Engineering, Arts, Math!  Get it!?  Our ASP hosts a science and art themed carnival for the entire school every spring, where they build seriously amazing projects -- like homemade stomp rockets and craft boat races based on economic theory (seriously!).  To be held Wednesday, April 26, 5:30-7pm.  Everyone is invited -- and if you’d like to help out, please contact Maybelle Miranda (mmiranda@ymcasf.org).

Thursday, May 4 - Last PTA meeting of the year!    We'll wrap up the PTA year with our final general meeting.  Don’t miss it -- the YMCA After School Program’s DJ CREW will be spinning in their debut performance!!

Starr King’s YMCA Summer Camp Registration is Available! Our on-site After School Program, run by the Y, has their summer registrations available (link:  http://risingstarrs.weebly.com/registration.html ). The Y has fun for everyone, and they plan to continue the “Best Summer Ever” theme this summer with weeks planned to be a “Summer of Discovery”. Summer Camp will be located at Cesar Chavez ES from June 5th to July 21st, with weekly enrollment available. A bus from SK to CC is available. For questions, please email Maybelle (mmiranda@ymcasf.org).

Skate Day is Coming!  May 13!  Our first roller-skating party is happening on Saturday, May 13, 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Church of Eight Wheels (554 Fillmore Street).  Admission is free for the whole Starr King community!  There will be a bus leaving from Starr King at 9 a.m. that morning, returning at noon (or you can get there via your own means of transportation).  Look for bus RSVP forms in your Wednesday folder in the next few weeks.  Questions?  Requests for favorite songs to skate to?  Email 1st grade parent Willem Vroegh at wvroegh@yahoo.com.

Summer camp opportunity in Taiwan - Third through fifth graders are eligible to attend a seven day summer camp in Taiwan; camp tuition and lunch is free, but airfare, hotel, and other meals are not included.    This camp , held the week of July 24 - July 30, will provide a real cultural exchange opportunity; students will interact with Chinese students and experience a host of cultural activities, including viewing cultural monuments, learning about Taiwanese aboriginal foods and history, viewing unique architecture, tasting night market delicacies, and learning how to do herb and flower sachets.  If you are interested in learning more, please call  Ms. Rosen after school at (415) 695-5797 or leave a telephone message at the office for her.  Second graders will be given a spot if space is available.

Newsletter compiled by Christine Van Aken - please send announcements to cbvanaken@gmail.com.

The Nest, April 12th, 2017

Mark Your Calendars

Date/Time Event
4/14/17 Friday, 2 p.m. Holi Celebration
4/15/17 Saturday, 10-11:30 a.m. Greening work day
4/15/17 Saturday, 6-11 p.m. Spring Fling at the Verdi Club
4/19/17 Wednesday, 5:30-7 p.m. STEAM Night with the After-School Program -- all are welcome
5/4/17 Thursday, 6-7:30 p.m. Last PTA Meeting of the Year. Come Celebrate!
5/6/17 Saturday, 10am–Noon SAVE THE DATE Kinder Welcome + SK/Stanford Alumni Greening Collaboration + Clean Schoolyard Trash Pick Up
5/13/17 Saturday, 9-11:30 a.m. SKATE DAY at Church of Eight Wheels

April is All About Testing, or not! As we wind down the school year, it’s important to note that students are being asked to demonstrate their knowledge in a number of ways. Whether on state tests, reading tests, or Chinese tests, many students are feeling the pressure to perform well. The good news is that I’ve heard from a number of students that they feel confident in their abilities and look forward to showing the results of all their hard work on the tests. And, while this is important, I am most heartened by the strength and positivity of our community. I cannot express enough my thanks to the many parent volunteers and donors who have contributed to the success of this year. From math tutoring to math festivals to budget brainstorming, each one of you has made an exceptional contribution to the education of all of our students.  We have weathered quite a few storms together and will undoubtedly have others in the coming years. I look forward to our continued good work, -D

Chip in to tidy up the schoolyard!  Greening work day this Saturday, April 15.  Come help the Green Team clean up a few areas of our schoolyard this Saturday from 10a-11:30a.  First of a series (hopefully every Saturday!) of small work days to put things back in order after the winter deluge and a year of exploring hands and feet.  Bring gloves, water and sunscreen… snacks provided and kids welcome!  Contact Peter (peterliang@me.com) for more info.

Spring Fling is THIS WEEK!  Buy your tickets!  Tickets for the Spring Fling - a fabulous annual fundraising gala - are now on sale.  There will be food, drinks, silent and live auction.  Spend time with friends and meet new parents while also supporting the school!  Spring Fling is happening at Verdi Club 2424 Mariposa St, San Francisco, CA 94110. It’s on April 15th, Saturday 6pm-11:00pm. It's ADULTS ONLY.  So book your sitter early!  You do not want to miss out on the fun.   Buy tickets here ASAP -- prices go up at the door!  https://www.starrkingschool.org/spring-fling/.  Tickets are $65 per person, or $240 for the Bring Your Friends Pack.  Don’t miss out!

Holi Celebration!  Friday, April 14!  Holi is a traditional Hindu spring festival known as the “festival of colors.”  Here are Starr King, we celebrate Holi by throwing colored powder at each other with wild abandon.  We were rained out of the originally scheduled date of 3/24, so we’re celebrating Friday 4/14 at 2 p.m.  If your child returned a permission slip for this event in March, please be sure to send your child to school in clothes that can get messy.  Goggles or sunglasses to protect eyes are highly recommended as well.  Parents, come watch the fun!  For more information, contact Gina Lee-Satomi at ginasatomi at gmail dot com.

Starr King’s YMCA Summer Camp Registration is Available! Our on-site After School Program, run by the Y, has their summer registrations available (link:  http://risingstarrs.weebly.com/registration.html ). The Y has fun for everyone, and they plan to continue the “Best Summer Ever” theme this summer with weeks planned to be a “Summer of Discovery”. Summer Camp will be located at Cesar Chavez ES from June 5th to July 21st, with weekly enrollment available. A bus from SK to CC is available. For questions, please email Maybelle (mmiranda@ymcasf.org).

Skate Day is Coming!  May 13!  Our first roller-skating party is happening on Saturday, May 13, 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Church of Eight Wheels (554 Fillmore Street).  Admission is free for the whole Starr King community!  There will be a bus leaving from Starr King at 9 a.m. that morning, returning at noon (or you can get there via your own means of transportation).  Look for bus RSVP forms in your Wednesday folder in the next few weeks.  Questions?  Requests for favorite songs to skate to?  Email 1st grade parent Willem Vroegh at wvroegh at yahoo dot com.

Summer camp opportunity in Taiwan - Third through fifth graders are eligible to attend a seven day summer camp in Taiwan; camp tuition and lunch is free, but airfare, hotel, and other meals are not included.    This camp , held the week of July 24 - July 30, will provide a real cultural exchange opportunity; students will interact with Chinese students and experience a host of cultural activities, including viewing cultural monuments, learning about Taiwanese aboriginal foods and history, viewing unique architecture, tasting night market delicacies, and learning how to do herb and flower sachets.  If you are interested in learning more, please call  Ms. Rosen after school at (415) 695-5797 or leave a telephone message at the office for her.  Second graders will be given a spot if space is available.

Scholar dollars update = no update!  Thanks to everyone who voted their fingers to the bone last month to win a technology grant for Starr King!  No news yet -- winners will be announced on April 17.  Keep your fingers crossed!

Seneca Social and Emotional Toolbox -  It can be challenging for children (and adults) not to take things personally.  The Garbage Can Tool teaches this skill.  We teach them to think of some mean or annoying things as “garbage” that can be placed in the Garbage Can where they can, hopefully, let it go.  We also want to teach them the difference between little stuff that goes in the Garbage Can, and big stuff that might need further attention.  At home you can remind children when there are little things that can go in the Garbage Can and let it go.  Help your children figure out if an event is important enough to deal with or something they can practice using the Garbage Can and the tagline “I let the little things go.”

If you have any questions about Seneca’s lessons or tools, please feel free to email Laura Lin at Laura_Lin@senecacenter.org.

 

Newsletter compiled by Christine Van Aken - please send announcements to cbvanaken@gmail.com

The Nest, March 22nd, 2017

Mark Your Calendars

Date/Time Event
3/24/17 Friday (Extra) FREE DRESS DAY!!!
3/24/17 Friday, 2 p.m. Holi Celebration CANCELLED Rainy day, new date TBD
3/27 - 3/31/17 Spring Break - No school!
4/6/17 Thursday PTA general meeting -- Visioning Meeting
4/7/17 Friday Free Dress Day
4/15/17 Saturday Spring Fling at the Verdi Club
4/19/17 Wednesday, 5:30-7p.m. STEAM Night with the After-School Program -- all are welcome
5/6/17 Saturday, 10am–Noon SAVE THE DATE — Kinder Welcome + SK/Stanford Alumni Greening Collaboration + Clean Schoolyard Trash Pick Up

Starr King Parent Survey - Families!  We need your help!  Did you know that Starr King’s district scorecard depends on getting parent/guardian responses to a survey about the school’s climate?  Help out by taking the survey here:  https://surveys.panoramaed.com/sfusd/4795109529/surveys?language=en.  Take the survey once for each child you have enrolled at Starr King!

Vote for Starr King to win $10,000 for new computers!  Vote every day!  The ScholarShare program is giving away $10,000 technology grants.  Vote for Starr King each and every day from as many email addresses as you have at this link: http://www.myscholardollars.com/?school=3393.  Starr King is currently in FIRST place and eligible for a grant, so keep voting!!!

PTA and Site Budget Update - As past newsletters reported, SFUSD proposed some big cuts to Starr King’s non-teaching staff.  Some of this money was restored (such as funding for our Assistant Principal), but Ms. Martin and the administration asked the PTA to fill in some of the gaps.  We did so at our emergency meeting on March 15.  The PTA voted to fund outdoor education, the SK playworks elementary advisor (Mr. Kenny), the small part of the third MI teacher for 4th/5th grades that the district won't fund, and science instruction.  The PTA is also providing $70,000 in discretionary funds for the site that can be used to fund a short list of specified activities (StageWrite, academic support for students, coaching support for teachers, mental health services, and others spelled out in the spreadsheet).  This discretionary allocation gives Ms. Martin maximum flexibility as she continues to work to restore district funding for our programs and staff.  Thanks to everyone who provided input and came out and voted -- it was a great example of how involved and generous this amazing community is.

Starr King Visioning - PTA General Meeting, Thursday, April 6. Starr King is expressed through all aspects of it’s diversity, and our community is defined by how we meet every challenge and opportunity with passion and action. In every endeavor or emergency, whether we are winning or losing, we are constantly learning about what our kids need and how we can better meet and exceed their needs. Let’s put our collective expertise and fresh perspectives to work—join us for part two of our Starr King visioning, where we’ll explore the challenge of creating one community within a school of  four programmatic strands [pre-K, sped, ge, mi], and embracing the opportunity to be a school that builds and fulfills the potential of every student.

Starr King’s YMCA Summer Camp Registration is Available! Our on-site After School Program, run by the Y, has their summer registrations available (link:  http://risingstarrs.weebly.com/registration.html ). The Y has fun for everyone, and they plan to continue the “Best Summer Ever” theme this summer with weeks planned to be a “Summer of Discovery”. Summer Camp will be located at Cesar Chavez ES from June 5th to July 21st, with weekly enrollment available. A bus from SK to CC is available. For questions, please email Maybelle (mmiranda@ymcasf.org).

2016 Fall ASK Campaign “Perks” and Acknowledgement Letters for Tax-Deductible Donations.  Remember the Fall ASK campaign, and how this community ROCKED IT by hitting our goal of $175,000?  Well, it’s time for our kids to get the incentives they earned.  This coming Friday, March 24, there will be an extra FREE DRESS DAY for the kids.  Look for more rewards coming soon.  Also, acknowledgement letters for your tax-deductible donations are coming  this week (either by mail or by email, depending on what information you provided to us).  If you have any questions about the letters, please contact Alisa Shen at ashen71@gmail.com.  Thanks again to everyone for your generous donations!

Holi Celebration!  RAINED OUT!  The trees and flowers are happy, but our kids aren’t -- another rainstorm is forecast for this Friday, making it hard for our kids to throw colored powder at each other with wild abandon.  So we’re going to reschedule -- the new date is TBD.  Look for information in the next newsletter.

Spring Fling is coming!  Buy your tickets!  Tickets for the Spring Fling - a fabulous annual fundraising gala - are now on sale.  There will be food, drinks, silent and live auction.  Spend time with friends and meet new parents while also supporting the school!  Spring Fling is happening at Verdi Club 2424 Mariposa St, San Francisco, CA 94110.  It’s on April 15th, Saturday 6pm-11:00pm.    It's ADULTS ONLY.  So book your sitter early!  You do not want to miss out on the fun.   Please buy tickets here:  https://www.starrkingschool.org/spring-fling/.  Tickets are $65 per person, or $240 for the Bring Your Friends Pack.

If you need a sitter, Urban Sitter is offering a promotion to our school.  UrbanSitter is a website and app that helps parents find and book their community's most trusted babysitters and nannies. Here’s the list of sitters Starr King Elementary parents recommend: https://www.urbansitter.com/school/starr-king-elementary-san-francisco-ca. Sign up for free and use code VIPOFFER17 for a $50 credit towards your first booking, good until May 31, 2017.

Seneca Social and Emotional Toolbox -  Have you ever heard your kids say “He’s touching my stuff!” or  “Move over!”?  Our fifth Toolbox Skill is the “Personal Space Tool” which addresses the need for clear boundaries.  We want the students to understand:

  • Every person has personal boundaries and a right to space around them.
  • Each person has a cause (impact) and an effect on others.
  • How to honor and respect the personal boundaries of others.
  • How to communicate their needs for physical space boundaries.

At home you can have conversations with your children about Personal Space.  Point out the different Personal Space boundaries when you’re in different settings:  at home, at the grocery store, waiting for the bus, in elevators, etc.  Practice the gesture and tagline together.  Have your child put their hand in front of them, palms facing outward, with the sides of their thumbs touching each other.  They should move their hands away from each other, in a kind of curved motion to signify their Personal Space boundaries.  The tagline is:  “I have a right to my space and so do you”.

If you have any questions about Seneca’s lessons or tools, please feel free to email Laura Lin at Laura_Lin@senecacenter.org.


Newsletter compiled by Christine Van Aken - please send announcements to cbvanaken@gmail.com.

The Nest, March 15th, 2017

Mark Your Calendars

Date/Time Event
3/14/17 Tuesday, 6 pm Emergency PTA Meeting - Budget revisions
3/21/17 Tuesday, 6-7:30 p.m. School Site Council meets
3/24/17 Friday, 2 p.m. Holi Celebration
3/27 - 3/31 Spring Break - No school!
4/15/17 Saturday Spring Fling at the Verdi Club
4/19/17 Wednesday, 5:30-7p.m. STEAM Night with the After-School Program -- all are welcome

Starr King Parent Survey - Families!  We need your help!  Did you know that Starr King’s district scorecard depends on getting parent/guardian responses to a survey about the school’s climate?  Help out by taking the survey here:  https://surveys.panoramaed.com/sfusd/4795109529/surveys?language=en.  Take the survey once for each child you have enrolled at Starr King!

Vote for Starr King to win $10,000 for new computers!  Vote every day!  The ScholarShare program is giving away $10,000 technology grants.  Vote for Starr King each and every day from as many email addresses as you have at this link: http://www.myscholardollars.com/?school=3393.  Starr King is currently in third place and eligible for a grant, so keep voting!!!

PTA emergency general meeting - Tuesday, March 14, 6 p.m. - SFUSD has announced cuts to some of our staff (non-teaching) positions.  SFUSD may restore these positions, but nonetheless our community may have some hard choices to make about funding priorities.  Please come to this general meeting of the PTA, where we will consider whether to amend the PTA budget to move money to backfill the SFUSD cuts.  The executive committee will announce some options by email prior to the meeting.  Dinner and Childcare will be provided.

Thanks to everyone who completed the online surveys about our school priorities.  By a wide margin, the highest priority was to fund the staff positions that Ms. Martin and our teachers believe are most important for Starr King.  The next highest priorities, in descending order, were:  keeping an assistant principal, having a science consultant teach supplemental science school-wide, keeping a full-time social worker, having staff to provide academic support for struggling students, having staff to provide recess and lunchtime support for healthy play and conflict resolution, having Education Outside provide outdoor gardening and science instruction, having the StageWrite program, and having staff to coach teachers and improve their skills.


Starr King’s YMCA Summer Camp Registration is Available! Our on-site After School Program, run by the Y, has their summer registrations available (link:  http://risingstarrs.weebly.com/registration.html ). The Y has fun for everyone, and they plan to continue the “Best Summer Ever” theme this summer with weeks planned to be a “Summer of Discovery”. Summer Camp will be located at Cesar Chavez ES from June 5th to July 21st, with weekly enrollment available. For questions, please email Maybelle (mmiranda@ymcasf.org).

Holi Celebration!  Just before Spring Break begins, on Friday, March 24 at 2 p.m.,  Starr King celebrates Holi, or the spring festival of colors.  Permission slips went out last week - please sign and return if you want your child to participate.  Your child should wear clothes that can get messy and bring eye protection like goggle or sunglasses.  Parent volunteers are needed to come at 1:30 on Friday and help set up and supervise the colorful madness.  Contact Gina Lee-Satomi (ginasatomi at gmail dot com) if you are interested in helping out.

Spring Fling is coming!  Buy your tickets!  Tickets for the Spring Fling - a fabulous annual fundraising gala - are now on sale.  There will be food, drinks, silent and live auction.  Spend time with friends and meet new parents while also supporting the school!  Spring Fling is happening at Verdi Club 2424 Mariposa St, San Francisco, CA 94110.  It’s on April 15th, Saturday 6pm-11:30pm. It's ADULTS ONLY.  So book your sitter early!  You do not want to miss out on the fun.   Please buy tickets here:  https://www.starrkingschool.org/spring-fling/.  Tickets are $65 per person.

If you need a sitter, Urban Sitter is offering a promotion to our school.  UrbanSitter is a website and app that helps parents find and book their community's most trusted babysitters and nannies. Here’s the list of sitters Starr King Elementary parents recommend: https://www.urbansitter.com/school/starr-king-elementary-san-francisco-ca. Sign up for free and use code VIPOFFER17 for a $50 credit towards your first booking, good until May 31, 2017.