The Nest, May 10th, 2017

Mark Your Calendars

Date/TimeEvent
5/12/17 Friday Field Day - parent volunteers needed!
5/12/17 Friday 8:40am Pies in the Face! An ASK celebration!
5/11-12 Thursday/Friday, 6:30pm Stagewrite Performance at Brava Theater
5/13/17 Saturday, 9-11:30am SKATE DAY at Church of Eight Wheels
5/16/17 Tuesday, 10am-2pm Potrero Hill Rec Park-Fifth Grade Picnic
5/17/17 Wednesday, 10am Peace Rally-Potrero Hill Rec Center
5/18/17 Thursday, 8:30-9:15am SK Achievement Breakfast-invitation only
5/19/17 Friday, 2:00pm Pacific Islander Celebration- Multipurpose Room
5/24/17 Wednesday, 10:00am Kindergarten Promotion Ceremony
5/25/17 Thursday 10:00am 5th Grade Promotion Ceremony
5/26/17 Friday Last day of school!

Stagewrite Performances at Brava Theater(located on 24th St/York St)- ‘Mirrors, Smoke,& Getting Woke’-Short plays by Short People - Come see original plays written by Starr King 5th graders, inspired by works of visual art at the de Young Museum, and performed as stage readings by professional actors with music by The Write-Ons. Included in the evening’s performance, will be a SK Girls’ Group work and an A.D.A.P.T.work. Tickets may be purchased online from either Brava Theater or Stagewrite, and in-person from the SK office. Parents will also be selling in the morning before school starts. Let’s support our 11th year with Stagewrite!

Volunteer for Field Day - Friday, May 12 - Our PE teacher, Mr. Williams, is running a field day on Friday, May 12.  K-2 will participate in the morning from 9:30 to 11:30 and grades 3-5 will get their turn from 1 to 2:30.  We need parent volunteers!  If you can help run an event for all or part of these time slots, please contact Mr. Williams at WilliamsT@sfusd.edu.

Coming on Friday, May 12th at 8:40am…what you’ve all been waiting for!  For reaching our $175,000 fundraising goal of the Fall ASK Campaign, Principal Martin, Assistant Principal Fitzsimmons and a mystery member of the Starr King staff have graciously agreed to submit to getting PIEs in the face by three lucky students!!  Stop by and get a picture!

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 on your own).  Look for bus RSVP forms in your Wednesday folder in the next few weeks.  Questions?  Applause?  Email 1st grade parent Willem Vroegh at wvroegh@yahoo.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. Questions, please email Maybelle,mmiranda@ymcasf.org.

Alphabet soup: SSC and ELAC news!  On April 18, the School Site Council (SSC) and English Language Advisory Committee (ELAC) met together.  Principal Martin presented an update on the school's budget.  With the combination of District support, the site budget, and generous PTA support, we should be able to fund the school's most critical needs (including a full-time Assistant Principal, social worker, and Instructional Reform Facilitator), but our budget will be very tight.  Principal Martin is still working on identifying resources for needed mental health services and teacher release.

Principal Martin also reported that she has been conducting interviews with all Starr King students, classroom by classroom, to discuss how they feel about school and about their individual goals for the remainder of the year.  The results were mostly very positive in that the kids are enjoying school and have great aspirations, and the interviews helped her to identify some social-emotional issues in one classroom that needed to be addressed.

The SSC and ELAC members also discussed the use of the 30 minutes at the beginning of the day that is designed for additional instruction for English Learners at Starr King.  On the agenda of Starr King's leadership is ensuring that this time period can better meet the needs of all students in a differentiated manner.

SSC and ELAC also discussed Starr King’s uniform policy after some parents raised questions.  The historic reasons for the uniform policy were discussed, including the need to avoid differentiation of students based on resources and clothing.  The SSC and ELAC members all expressed support for keeping the uniform policy as is (blue pants, blue or white collared shirt or Starr King shirt), and renewing efforts to enforce the policy consistently.

Please donate any “gently used” or new uniforms to the office. We especially need small sizes for incoming kinder students, and large sizes for upper grade students. Thank you!

Keep collecting box tops to raise money for Starr King!  We are a month away from end of school, so keep bringing those box tops in to your teachers so we can continue to earn for Starr King!  We have a box tops collection contest from now until Friday, May 19th and the class with the most box tops will earn a pizza party!  Ms. Liu's 2nd grade class won in the fall.  Who will win this time?!? We received a check for $142.00 last month-Thanks!

Social and emotional skills toolbox series from Seneca - Our tenth Toolbox Skill is the “Apology and Forgiveness Tool.” The Apology and Forgiveness tool requires us to put many of our other Tools to work.  The act of a sincere apology takes self-reflection, self-esteem, and emotional intelligence.  Personal power if found when a child can make a mistake without feeling a loss of self-worth.  Making an apology is a sign of maturity, and asking for and granting forgiveness requires the child to let go of anger and hurt.

At home you can:

  • Be open when you feel badly about how you have treated your child and offer a sincere apology.
  • Let your children know that you forgive them when they have apologized.  
  • Help your children think about how they feel when they have been mean to someone, and consider whether they are ready to apologize.

Our eleventh Toolbox Skill  is the “Patience Tool”.  The dictionary says patience includes serenity.  To gain serenity, we must release our expectations and accept circumstances beyond our will.  Modeling this behavior for children will help them understand and learn it.  The opposite is also true- if we are impatient, our children will learn to be demanding and impulsive.  Here are 5 important ideas to keep in mind:

  • Being able to hold the frustration of not having what we want when we want it is no small task.  Knowing we are strong enough to wait makes a big difference.
  • Patience helps us to tolerate and accept situations beyond our control.
  • The Breathing Tool is the most helpful Tool with Patience.  Breathing deeply and slowly helps us to wait.  We need to practice this skill to be able to do it well.
  • We can use the Quiet/Safe Place Tool and the Taking Time Tool to help us have patience.
  • Finally, having patience with your child can sometimes by trying and takes practice, but there are two pay-offs:
    • Your child will learn patience from your example.
    • You will feel the benefit of increased patience in this world of ever-increasing stress and high pressure.

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

The Nest, April 26th, 2017

Mark Your Calendars

Date/TimeEvent
4/26/17 Wednesday, 5:30-7pmSTEAM Night!
4/28/17 Friday, 2:40-6pmAfter School Program CLOSED. NO PROGRAM on Friday
4/29/17 Saturday, 10-12pm“Micro” Greening Work Day
5/4/17 Thursday, 6-7:30pmLast PTA Meeting of the Year. Come Celebrate! With Student DJs!
5/6/17 Saturday, 10–NoonSAVE THE DATE—Kinder Welcome + SK/Stanford Alumni Greening Collaboration + Clean Schoolyard Trash Pick Up
5/12/17 FridaySports Day - volunteers needed
5/13/17 Saturday, 9-11:30amSKATE DAY at Church of Eight Wheels
5/25/17 Thursday 10am 5th Grade Promotion Ceremony

Rising Starrs After School Program is CLOSED THIS FRIDAY!  The onsite After School Program will be closed Friday (4/28), for their annual staff retreat.  This is a reminder.  The date was announced back in the fall.  Please make sure to have plans for picking up your child at 2:40pm!

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).

Another mini Greening Work Day!  Big ups to the rugged crew that showed up last weekend to haul debris… the yard is getting better all the time!  Please join Peter and the Green Team (which is pretty much all of you) for some strategic weeding and bagel-munching projects this Saturday from 10a to 12n.  As always: kids welcome, snacks provided… bring gloves and water.

Thursday, May 4 - Last PTA meeting of the year!  Important updates!   GELATO!!  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, AND we’ll be celebrating our classroom and PTA volunteers, AND we’ll have prizes for some amazing volunteers, AND we’ll have dinner and GELATO!!  Need more?  Well, there’s also PTA business -- Ms. Martin will be there to give our community an update on hiring for next year, including for the 4th / 5th grades, and on other staffing issues.  And Jolie Ginsburg will present the Treasurer’s Report.

Keep collecting box tops to raise money for Starr King!  We are a month away from end of school, so keep bringing those box tops in to your teachers so we can continue to earn for Starr King!  We have a box tops collection contest from now until Friday, May 19th and the class with the most box tops will earn a pizza party!  Ms. Liu's 2nd grade class won in the fall.  Who will win this time?!?

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?  Applause?  Email 1st grade parent Willem Vroegh at wvroegh@yahoo.com.

Seneca Social and Emotional Toolbox - Our eighth Toolbox Skill is the “Taking Time Tool”. The Taking Time Tool has two distinct purposes.  Time Away allows us to physically remove ourselves to create more space from the heat of a conflict.  It also allows us the space to calm down and take inventory of how we are feeling and thinking.  Time-In means to take some time to check-inside oneself to see what is needed.  It is time to notice what you feel, to think things through, or cool down.

At home you can ask your children to explain the difference between a Time-In and Time-Away, and to show you the Taking Time hand gesture.   You can also remind all family members to use their Taking Time Tool when conflicts arise.  It is helpful for children to see adults role model using the tool.

If you have any questions about the 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, 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