Friday, December 18th, 2020

Principal's Corner

Hello BFPP Families,

Dr. Baker started the year with our district staff reviewing The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World by Tenzin Gyatso and featuring the 14th Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. I had the good future of having read this particular book a few summers ago, but bringing it out at the beginning of the year, mid-pandemic, with so many unknowns and yet-to-happen events, seemed like a much needed revisit. It is a lovely story that shares the lifelong friendship between two very different people, from very different faiths, who have both experienced immense hardships in their lives, but seem to perpetually find joy in life, in each other and in serving others.

Three themes that Dr. Baker pulled out for us to consider were gratitude, humility and compassion. I am thinking about those as we begin our winter break. I am so very grateful for the team of teachers and leaders who are supporting this program. They are tireless in their effort and commitment in supporting you, the families and students of BFPP. I am humbled by the families that share their stories, take the leaps of faith, and continually find ways to embrace what is before them. You are more than making the best of this situation. And, I feel great compassion for those who are suffering and not able to find joy right now. I hope you find joy through living gratefully, humbly and with compassion.

Have a wonderful winter break and go find some joy!

With love and hugs from afar, k

PS- please consider joining me in January for a Learning Together Book Club on the book Brave Learner. The flyer is below. This resource is pure homeschooling inspiration and I look forward to sharing it with BFPP!

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Carrie Vining

Hi there! I am very excited to join the BFPP Team. I come from a background where I studied Alternative Education at Antioch University, but life took me in a different direction and I have spent over 20 years as an educator mostly working in high poverty schools. I taught in 1st and 2nd grade classrooms in Seattle, Northern Arizona, and Kendall. For the last 12 years have been a K- 5th Reading Specialist in Bellingham Schools.

I am blessed with a fantastic family. I have a 15 year old son and an 11 year old daughter. My husband Matt works as an electrician for the City of Bellingham. We all love to explore the world, play games, watch movies, camp, and keep our cats entertained. I personally love to read fiction whenever I have the chance. I have an extreme fear of heights and an irrational fear of dams. Now you know almost all about me!

It’s interesting how life comes full circle and I am now getting this amazing opportunity to use my knowledge about alternative education. I can’t wait to meet you and walk with your family on this journey. I know I will learn so much from you and your family. I can only hope I will have as much to offer. Off we go into the wild together! Email Carrie

Stephanie Korn

Hi, I’m Stephanie Korn and I am very excited to be able to support the Family Partnership Program as the program has expanded under the unusual circumstances that the 2020-21 school year brings us. In the short time I have begun working with families and staff here at FPP, I have quickly learned what a unique and special program this is and am thrilled to be a part of the magic.

I have been an elementary art and 6th grade teacher, assistant principal, and here in Bellingham, I was the principal of Alderwood Elementary from 2007-2014. Since then, I have had the privilege of supporting our amazing district as a Director of Teaching and Learning.

I am also a proud mom, and my 14 year old son is in 9th grade and is working at Mt. Baker this year. I spend my free time running and hiking with my dog, skiing with my son, and in nicer weather, getting out on the water in my kayak or paddleboard. Email Stephanie

Time Change: Materials Pick Up & Returns

Materials pick up and return will continue in January on Wednesdays from 9-10 am (for one hour only) and 4:30-5:30pm.

Remember: If you or someone in your household has a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, please do not come onsite for supply pick up/materials distribution or any other reason until your quarantine period is over. Thank you!

Meal Boxes

There will be no meal box distributions on Dec. 23rd or 30th. The Bellingham Food Bank will continue to operate during the holidays. Visit their website for more information on times and locations. For more food support options click here. School district meal box distribution will resume on Wednesdays starting January 6th, 2021.

Get Ready to Yeti!

Calling all 4th & 5th grade bibliophiles! Would you like to participate in a book club? Wade King Librarian (and former BFPP teacher!) Julie Hunter is inviting 4th and 5th graders to join her Yeti Zoom Room starting in January on Wednesdays at 9:00am. Please contact Julie if you are interested in participating. Let her know you're from BFPP. Students will participate in book club discussions, play games and have fun.

OCD in Kids

Crystal Holtzheimer, mom to BFPP student Gracie, has written an informative article about what her family has learned as they have supported Gracie through a new diagnosis of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. In the article below, Crystal shares fantastic info and resources about diagnosing and treating OCD in children. Gracie shares her perspective as well! Please click on the file below to read.

Free Individual Counseling

WWU Counseling Training Clinic is offering free tele-health counseling appointments starting in January. Appointments for adults and youth ages 13 and older are available. Families with younger children will be offered parent consultation services. Please call 360-650-3184 to sign up.

5th Graders ~ Free Lift Ticket at Mt. Baker

Did you know 5th graders are eligible for a free lift ticket any time they visit Mt. Baker?

You can enroll online or in-person, and all instructions are available here.

Use a printout of your child's Skyward account that clearly lists their name, grade level, and enrollment in Bellingham School District as proof of eligibility for this program.

BFPP Village Books Day

A big thank you to everyone who shopped Village Books BFPP day! The teachers get to select $210 worth of new books for our library and class use! Want to suggest a title for purchase? Contact Heidi and let us know.

Online Board Games

Looking for something new to shake up those Zoom sessions with friends and family? Check out this enormous list of mostly free online board games or click below for a PDF version. There's something for everyone, including favorites such as Codenames, Stratego, and UNO, as well as mathy options like Set and Blokus, plus many more. Pair these with Zoom or Discord to see and/or talk with your opponents and you're set.

Newsletter Contributions Welcome

Do you have a news item to share with our school community at large? How about ideas on how to help this newsletter better meet our school's needs? Please reach out to Heidi Zollner.