Gerber Newsletter

November Edition

Gerber Union Elementary School District

The Mission of Gerber Elementary School is to team with families to create a college-oriented culture where students are safe, respected, and empowered to contribute in a global community.

Answer to October RIDDLE: What has to be broken before you can use it? An Egg

November RIDDLE: How far can a fox run into the woods?


The end of the first trimester is quickly coming to an end. This month you’ll have an opportunity to talk to your child’s teacher about how they are progressing in school. Please look for parent/teacher conference notification and respond in writing whether or not you’ll be able to make your scheduled date/time. If not, please be sure to let the teacher know when you’d prefer to reschedule. Our District goal is to have 100% attendance for parent conferences. The more you get involved, the better opportunity your child will have to be successful in school.

Questions for parents to ask during teacher conferences:

  1. What is my child's greatest strength?

  2. How is my child progressing towards meeting standards?

  3. Does my child seem happy at school?

  4. Does my child participate in class?

  5. Do you have any behavior concerns with my child?

  6. Does my child hand homework in on time?

  7. What can I do at home to help?

Enrollment: Approximately 395 students

Acknowledgments: Our November Employee of the Month is Will Roehrich. Will wears multiple hats at Gerber, he helps with maintenance, grounds, and drives the bus. Will always has a positive attitude and is a fantastic team player. He went above and beyond the last several months filling in for vacant positions and we really appreciate his dedication to staff, students and Gerber School. Thank you for all you do, Will!!!


Important Dates:

  • November 1st- NO SCHOOL

  • November 11th- NO SCHOOL

  • November 12th-15th Minimum Days

  • November 15th- Honor Roll Field Trip to Lariat Bowling (4th-8th)

  • November 22nd- Student of the Month Assembly

  • November 25th-29th- Thanksgiving Break NO SCHOOL


  • Empathy... is at the heart of what it means to be human. It’s a foundation for acting ethically, for good relationships of many kinds, for loving well, and for professional success. And it’s key to preventing bullying and many other forms of cruelty.

    Empathy begins with the capacity to take another perspective, to walk in another’s shoes. But it is not just that capacity. Empathy includes valuing other perspectives and people. It’s about perspective-taking and compassion.

    How can parents cultivate empathy? The following is one of five guideposts based on research and the wisdom of practitioners.

    1. Empathize with your child and model empathy for others.

    Children learn empathy both from watching us and from experiencing our empathy for them. When we empathize with our children they develop trusting, secure attachments with us. Those attachments are key to their wanting to adopt our values and to model our behavior, and therefore to building their empathy for others.

    Empathizing with our children takes many forms, including tuning in to their physical and emotional needs, understanding and respecting their individual personalities, taking a genuine interest in their lives, and guiding them toward activities that reflect an understanding of the kind of people they are and the things they enjoy.

    Children also learn empathy by watching those we notice and appreciate. They’ll notice if we treat a server in a restaurant or a mail carrier as if they’re invisible. On the positive side, they’ll notice if we welcome a new family in our child’s school or express concern about another child in our child’s class who is experiencing one challenge or another.

    Finally, it’s important for us to recognize what might be getting in the way of our empathizing. Are we, for example, exhausted or stressed? Does our child push our buttons in a specific way that makes caring for her or him hard at times?


    • Know your child. Ask your child questions. For example, what did you learn today that was interesting? What was the hardest part of your day? How would you most like to spend a day if you could do anything? Do you have a friend that you especially respect? Why do your respect that person?

    • Demonstrate empathy for others, including those different from you. Consider regularly engaging in community service or model other ways of contributing to a community. Even better, consider doing this with your child. Express interest in those from various backgrounds facing many different types of challenges.

    • Engage in self-care and self-reflection. Try to find time to regularly engage in an activity—whether it’s going for a walk, reading a book, meditating or praying—that can help you avoid being overwhelmed by stress. Reflect and consult with people you trust when you’re having a hard time empathizing with your child. -Making Caring Common Project, Harvard

    To continue to learn more about fostering empathy in your children, follow this link to learn more.

Attend Today Achieve Tomorrow

Are you planning a family trip for the holidays? As you think about your arrangements, we want to stress the importance of sending your child to school every day possible. Every year, absences spike in the weeks before and after the winter holidays as families squeeze in a few more vacation days. It’s time to break that cycle. We know that just a few missed days here and there, even if they’re excused absences, can add up to too much lost learning time and put your child behind in school. This is as true in kindergarten as it is in high school. Put simply, too many absences at any age can affect a student’s chances for academic success and eventually for graduation. Our teachers will be teaching, and our students will be learning, right up until vacation starts and the first day back. This holiday season, give your children the gift of an education and the habit of attendance.

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original Bringing Attendance Home_ Parent Video
Attendance Everyday (Spanish)

Tech Tip

Playing games online is becoming more and more popular these days. Familiarizing yourself with some of the websites that your kids like is important because not all games are appropriate for our kids. However, many websites have games that are educational and many students enjoy those games. Sometimes our kids need help finding appropriate sites and games. If you would like to introduce yourself or your student to some of the websites that Gerber School recommends then check out our Student Links page. As mentioned in last months newsletter, you can use Common Sense Media for ratings on a website's appropriateness for different age levels.