Estrada's E-Notes

September 2022 Edition

Principal's Post

Wow! I am so grateful for an awesome start to the school year. The staff and I have been busy preparing, and I am excited about our plans for the year. We have set our focus on helping every child to grow academically, socially, emotionally, and behaviorally.

I understand the trust that you place in us to take care of your child(ren), and I don't take that trust lightly. It's only by partnering with parents and having strong communication that we can help all students succeed. These monthly E-notes are one important component of my communication efforts. Each month I will include information about academic strategies/tools, a spotlight on safety, highlights from a specific grade level, and important dates. You'll also receive periodic emails, texts, and call-outs with reminders and timely information. Of course, communication is a two-way street, and I appreciate you bringing questions and concerns to me directly.

Thank you for your continued trust, collaboration, and support. We're going to do BIG THINGS!

Keep being awesome!

Principal Estrada


Grow with Gratitude

Feeling and expressing gratitude can be viewed as a skill. Like with any skill, the more that you practice it, the more naturally it comes to you. There are many ways to practice gratitude. Here's an interactive suggestion you may consider doing as a family. It could be discussed as you're driving home from school, around the table at dinner, before bedtime or any time it makes sense for your family. It's called "Rose, Thorn, and Bud". Each person takes a turn sharing about their day by identifying a rose, thorn, and bud.

Rose = a highlight, success, small win or something positive that happened

Thorn = a challenge you experienced or something that bummed you out

Bud = something you are looking forward to

Spotlight on Academics

Thinking Maps is a set of 8 visual patterns that correlate to specific cognitive processes. They are used across all grades and content areas to build the critical thinking, problem-solving, comprehension, and communication skills necessary for academic success in every domain. This summer the teaching staff and I participated in Thinking Maps training. We will continue with training throughout the year to build our capacity in using Thinking Maps with students. You may have already heard your child(ren) talking about Thinking Maps or seen them displayed in classrooms at Back to School Night. We are excited about the impact this teaching strategy will have on students' critical thinking skills and academic achievement. If you would like more info, your child's teacher can share or you can explore the Thinking Maps website.

Spotlight on Safety: Arrival and Dismissal

Our one-of-a-kind, wonderful location on the beach does pose some challenges for arrival and dismissal. We've designed the procedures to help keep these busy times of day safer for students and more efficient. Thank you in advance for following them.

Drop off:

Staff supervision begins at 7:45.

The valet curb is for dropping off only. Do not park or exit your vehicle.

All walkers and bikers should enter campus from the boardwalk gates.

Pick up:

When school is dismissed, students exit through the MPR doors or the boardwalk gates.

The valet curb is for picking up only. Do not park or exit your vehicle. Students should not enter vehicles until the vehicle pulls up past the MPR stairs.

All walkers should exit through the boardwalk gate closest to the beach playground and bikers should exit campus through the boardwalk gate closest to the basketball courts.

Adults, if you are parking your car or walking to campus, please meet your student at the boardwalk gate. It makes it difficult to safely get students in and out of cars when the sidewalk is congested with pedestrians. All foot traffic should be on the boardwalk side of campus. The curb in front of school is for loading/unloading from vehicles only.

Shout Out for Pre-School

Each month I'm highlighting a different grade. First up is Pre-School! Our amazing team includes Mrs Merin and Miss Smith who provide 3 and 4 year olds with their first introduction to school and what it means to be best on the beach. I am blown away every time I visit their room with how much they teach with intention and care about students. Mrs Merin wanted to highlight some of the incredible ways they have been building classroom community and learning how to check in on their feelings. She writes:

We read the book Our Class is a Family and then came up with ways we can show we’re a class family. The visual (left picture below) will be posted as a reminder of our class rules/expectations.

Our little ones have been checking in on their feelings every morning during circle time using the mood meter. This week they each had an opportunity to make their own Mood Meter (center picture below) by either coloring each square or adding drawings that represent different emotions. We also added pictures of themselves as a visual. These mood meters will eventually be put in a binder in our Calm corner. We had our first community meeting (right picture below). Children practiced turn-taking, being patient, making eye contact with the speaker and listening to the person holding the apple.

Important Dates

September 1 - 1:00 Dismissal for Back to School Night

September 1 - Back to School Night - This is an adult only event.

September 2 - Flag Deck @ 8:10

September 2 - Foundation Meeting following Flag Deck

September 5 - Labor Day - No School

September 15 - International Dot Day

September 16 - Flag Deck @ 8:10

September 16 - PTA General Meeting following Flag Deck

September 16 - NHHS Zone Football game - free admission for elementary students wearing spirit wear - kickoff @ 7:00pm

October 1 - NESF Annual Car Show on the beach - 10am to 2pm

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School Volunteers

Parent volunteers add so much to our school community and the experience of our students.

All interested volunteers are asked to complete these 3 steps annually:

  1. Read through the Newport El Volunteer Orientation slide deck.
  2. Complete the Newport El Volunteer Agreement.
  3. Complete the district's volunteer approval process.

As always, every teacher utilizes volunteers in different ways. Teachers will be communicating with the approved volunteers from their class about their need for volunteers and scheduling.

Our Office Staff is Here to Help

Main Line: 949-515-6965

Absence Line: 949-515-6832

Attendance and enrollment questions:

Debbie Kandel -

Health, medications, and immunizations questions:

Dana Hansen - and

Nurse Sarah Hacker -

All Other Inquiries:

Susi Mendoza -

Staff Directory

Get Connected!

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