Cub Courier

Crescent Harbor Elementary | November 2021

A Message from the Principal

Dear Crescent Harbor families,

We are pleased to have made it to the month of November without having to shut down classrooms or our school building, and we have YOU to thank for that! Your care in keeping your kids home when sick, letting us know whether someone in your home has tested positive for or been exposed to COVID, and your general open communication with our teaching staff, school nurse, and our office staff are the tools to which we can attribute our success in keeping our school open. Thank you!

Now...I know it's no easy task to keep your child home while trying to keep up with schoolwork when quarantined, so THANK YOU to those of you who have done so. Also, please be assured that we are aware of the difficulties and we are doing our very best to keep our students caught up much as possible...accelerated to make up for the learning losses they've experienced over these past two years. Our intervention system for reading is up and running and we have found ways to provide intervention for math, too. Our goal is to do the best we can for our students with the time we have them.

This brings us to our focus for November. The character trait for this month is Gratitude, and I often write in November about how grateful we are at Crescent Harbor for our many partnerships: with our families; with community organizations who support our students both directly and indirectly such as the Oak Harbor Educational Foundation, Living Word Church, First United Methodist Church, Rotary of Oak Harbor, Soroptimist International of Oak Harbor, and many others; with the general Oak Harbor community for their support of our levies and bonds, which provide for quality educational opportunities and updated facilities for our students; and with NAS Whidbey Island, to name just a few of these many organizations for which we give thanks.

While we have much to be thankful for, we are also mindful of our role in partnering with you to help forge habits of citizenship for our country. To this end, we are celebrating World Kindness Day on November 12 (it's officially on the 13th), and Tuesday, November 16 is the International Day for Tolerance. In a world where communication has taken on an angry tone and social media allows little room for listening and lots of room for shouting, we are mindful of the awesome responsibility we have as educators to teach our students how to be tolerant and kind, even when they disagree or have strong feelings about things. Our hope is that, as they grow, we will help create a community where civil discourse and respectful disagreement become habitual and that our children refrain from shouting and insults to get their points across.

It is with thanksgiving and gratitude that I have the opportunity to serve and lead our community at Crescent Harbor Elementary. I am immensely proud of our staff and students for continually and with flair rising to the challenges we have faced over the past couple of years.

With regards,

Kate Valenzuela

Principal, Crescent Harbor Elementary


Important Dates and Reminders

November 2 - 5 | Book Fair

November 4 | Parent Night at the Book Fair | 3:35 p.m. - 7 p.m.

November 7 | Daylight Savings Ends | Set Clocks Back One Hour

November 9 | PTA Meeting | 3:45 p.m.

November 10 | Picture Retake Day

November 10 | NW Fundraiser Pick-Up | 2:30 p.m. - 5 p.m.

November 11 | Veteran's Day | NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS

November 15 | Help House Food Basket Requests Due

November 23 | Fill the Bus Food Drive Ends

November 24 - 26 | Holiday Break | NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS

Please remember that...

  • Students should be in the classroom by 9 a.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday and by 10 a.m. on Wednesday. Otherwise, students will be marked as tardy.
  • You should contact O'Connor Photography at 1-800-993-4929 if you have any questions or need assistance about ordering school pictures taken on picture retake day.
  • NW Fundraiser orders must be picked up by 5 p.m. on November 10 as there is not sufficient room to store orders at the school.
  • First names should be written inside outerwear in order to return them to their owners. Currently, the Lost and Found is full of coats that had been left outside. Stop by the office for directions on how to check if your child is missing something.
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Dean's Corner

Hello Crescent Harbor Families,

It is always a great day for me when we get to support our students in their day-to-day endeavors. Our team is always working hard to help our kids meet their academic goals and develop their social-emotional skills. As the holidays approach and the days become shorter and shorter we are aware that this could increase our kids' support needs. As the school year progresses our kids will face challenges and we are here to support their development.

A few friendly reminders -- toys, games, cards (Pokemon), and play equipment from home can cause distractions and are not allowed at school. “Show & Tell” is the exception. Students arriving at school after the tardy bell will need an “Admit Slip” from the office to enter the classroom. Finally, as our weather degrades and temperatures fall, let’s ensure our kids have dressed appropriately for the conditions.

I am so excited to see our young students grow, demonstrate those lessons learned, and implement all the wonderful skills gained. I am grateful for your trust in us, grateful for our students, and grateful for our team’s energy.

Jose Garcia

Dean of Students

Fill the Bus Food Drive

We are collecting non-perishable items for the North Whidbey Help House now through November 23. Along with other Oak Harbor schools, we hope to collect a bus-full of donations to support our community.

Students can participate by bringing items such as ramen, soup, rice, canned chicken, refried beans, pasta, cereal, crackers, cookies, peanut butter, or other non-perishable supplies to school. Items should be dropped off in the classroom to count toward the in-school competition to see which class can bring in the most donations.

Morning Drop Off Reminder

For the safety of all students and staff, we ask parents not to enter our hallways. Please get your kisses and say your goodbyes at the school door and then let your child continue to class without you.

If you feel that your child needs to be accompanied to class, then please alert the office and we will have a staff member accompany them.

Please Dress for the Weather

With current temperatures in the 40's in the mornings and slated to get colder in the coming months, please ensure your student wears layers and weather-appropriate clothing to school. Students do go outside each day for recess and P.E. and need to have warm outdoor gear as well as rainy day attire for inclement weather.

We also accept donations of gently used children's coats if you find that you have any to spare.

Weather Protocol & Emergency Routes

Snow emergencies and school closures are announced as early as possible through an all-district email message, our hotline number 360.279.5060, radio and television stations, and on our district website homepage.

Inclement weather may affect bus routes and pick up/drop off times, so read about Emergency Bus Routes here.

Counselor Corner

Help House Thanksgiving & Christmas Baskets

It is time to order holiday food baskets from the North Whidbey Help House. You can go directly to the Help House to order your holiday basket or pick up a Christmas and Thanksgiving (Back to Back) request form from the front office. Once filled out - you can take it directly to the Help House at 1091 SE Hathaway Street or drop it off in the front office and Mr. Riffel, the CHE School Counselor, will fax it to the Help House.

The holiday basket requests are due by November 15th. If you have questions, you can call the Help House at 360-675-0681.

Character Strong Banner

Character Trait for November: Gratitude

This month we’re talking about Gratitude! The dictionary defines it as: “the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.” The definition we are using in class is:

Gratitude: choosing to notice and appreciate things in our life, things in others, things in the world.

Gratitude has been shown to be one of the number one ways to reduce anxiety, increase happiness, and improve relationships. Why? Because it is a matter of where we put our attention! Did you know we can only have one thought at once? Scarlett Lewis from the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement says it like this: We can’t have a grateful thought and an angry thought at the same time! So, over the course of the month, we will consistently practice putting our attention and our focus on Gratitude. We will think about how to be grateful even for challenges. We will talk about incredible artists and writers and thinkers who know the power of Gratitude in the world. We will encourage Gratitude towards our classmates, ourselves, and (of course) our family!

Please review the family letter below for your student's grade level to learn more:

Gratitude Family Letter K-2 English | Spanish

Gratitude Family Letter 3-4 English | Spanish

Letter from the Library

We're recommending some great reads in line with this month's focus on gratitude. Students can ask about them when they next visit the Library!

Math Can Be Fun!

If you're looking for a way to support your student in growing their math skills, the Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction has a great Math at Home Newsletter parents can subscribe to.

The newsletter goes beyond desk-and-chair learning, with activities for multiple grade levels and learning styles, to teach basic numbers and operations, algebraic thinking, measurement and data, and geometry concepts in new, fun, and hands-on ways. You'll also find books recommended to beef up mathematical thinking and suggestions for how to cultivate a growth mindset.

Not ready for a newsletter? Other ideas to try:

  • Ask your child, "What repeats?" Let them take the lead in identifying patterns and repetition in the environment around them.
  • Explore symmetry by folding a piece of paper in half, painting on one side, and then folding the paper back over and pressing hard to transfer the paint to the other side. What is created? How do the sides compare?
  • Check out the Big Life Kids podcast geared toward helping children develop a growth mindset and their belief in themselves as capable doers.

Nurse Notes

Everything You Need to Know About the Flu

In a typical year, flu season occurs from fall to early spring — and with it comes sniffling, sneezing, coughing, fatigue, and all the familiar trappings of the flu. The severity of the illness varies by person, but the COVID-19 pandemic lends a new urgency to protecting ourselves while both of these viruses surge in the coming months.

Flu shots are always important, but they’re even more important this year to protect the population, and especially vulnerable groups, from getting flu while COVID-19 is still a threat.

What’s the difference between the flu and COVID-19? The symptoms of COVID-19, the flu, and allergies have some overlap but are often different. The main symptoms of COVID-19 are:

Flu symptoms are similar to COVID-19 including fever and body aches. But you may not find shortness of breath as a symptom with the flu. Allergy symptoms are usually more chronic and include sneezing, coughing, and wheezing. For more information, check out the full article on HealthLine

PTA Pointers

Come shop the book fair! Students will visit the book fair with their class this week. They may purchase items with cash, check, or e-wallet during this time. Check with your child's teacher for their designated time. Visit for more information on e-wallet or to shop the fair online. Volunteers are always welcome --pick up a volunteer application in the office.

Thursday, November 4, the book fair will be open from 3:45 p.m. to 7 p.m. so that families may shop. Cash, check, card, and digital payments will be accepted. Come browse and find some treasures for holiday gifts, home libraries, and more.

Northwest Fundraiser items will be delivered on Wednesday, November 10. Please plan to pick up any items ordered online or through the brochure between 2:30 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. on this day. All items must be picked up by 5 p.m. November 10, as we do not have ample space for storing these items, particularly anything delivered frozen. If you are unable to pick up at this time, you may send a proxy or contact the PTA at

Students brought home a pumpkin last week. Everyone is invited to participate in the fall pumpkin decorating contest. Decorate your pumpkin and send your photo to to be posted to our Facebook page by November 15. The winners will be decided by popular vote and will receive a turkey dinner donated by Saar's Supersaver.

The November PTA meeting will take place in the library on November 9 at 3:45 p.m. We would love to see you there.