Thornhill Elementary PFC Newsletter

Volume 27, Issue 37, May 19, 2020

In This Issue...

  • PFC President’s parenting “rules”

  • 2020-21 Registration: Get on it!

  • Keep crushing the Read-a-thon

  • GET YOUR STUFF AT SCHOOL NEXT WEEK (and bring your TerraCycle wrappers)

  • This week’s VIP (Very Important Puzzlemaster)


From the PFC President


During these weeks of sheltering in place, Megan and I have tried to maintain some semblance of regular school instruction for Madeline and Lily. We've tried to make it a rule that they have to do schoolwork for a couple of hours before we agree to letting them play a game on their iPad or laptop, or get on a Zoom video call with their friends.

And then we start working. And then someone wants to know why the angles of a triangle equal 180 degrees. And then an hour has gone by and we haven't gotten anything done and we tell them, "Hey...Want to see if Audrey wants to do a FaceTime call?"

So, we aren't always hard and fast with those rules. But, there are some rules that I firmly believe in--35 of those, in fact...And the longer I am a parent, the more I hold these rules sacred, and with some of them, I hold with my tongue firmly in cheek. With summer coming up, I offer these rules to you for your consideration, to possibly use now, or in the future...

1. Never refuse the chance to have ice cream. You can never be in a bad mood when you are eating ice cream.

2. You each have just one sister. Be friends with each other. This will really help out when it comes to sharing clothes. Or, if some day, one of you needs a kidney.

3. Don’t ever be late. For anything. In fact, be 10 minutes early.

4. Get a AAA membership. But know how to change a flat tire, anyway. Your cellphone battery might be dead and you’ll be unable to call AAA.

5. That said…Always keep your cell phone plugged into a car charger when you are driving.

6. You have no excuse for ever running out of gas. That thing on the dashboard with the “E” on one side and the “F” on the other? It tells you how much gas is in the tank. When it gets to the quarter-tank mark, pull off the road and fill up.

7. You want to date someone, fine. But I have to meet them before you go out. And I maintain the right of first refusal.

8. "The Rockford Files". Just watch and you will know.

9. If you are supposed to be home by 10, you will be home by 10.

10. Do I need to repeat Rule No. 9? No? Good. Be home by 10.

11. Always buy the best seat you can afford at the ballgame.

12. When someone puts a specific song on, that means they want to hear that song. Don’t talk over the song while it’s playing. Especially when that song is Boston’s “More Than A Feeling.”

13. Cast-iron skillets. You can cook anything on one and it will outlast you, your children, and your children’s children. And it’s not a bad weapon, either, if you need it.

14. Never go to bed with a sink full of dirty dishes.

15. Hawaii is always a good idea.

16. Accepting a gesture of politeness does not make you look weak. So, go ahead and let someone hold the door open for you.

17. When you are older, you will learn the value of keeping a good curse word chambered for emergency use.

18. Pick up those AA batteries when you’re at the store. You will need them for something.

19. Always raise your hand in class.

20. Help the kid who can’t figure out the answer. Don’t give him or her the answer, but show them how to get there.

21. When you meet your friends’ parents, or any other adults, it’s always Mr. or Mrs. (Last Name). If they say you can call them by their first names, it’s still always, Mr. or Mrs. (Last Name).

22. No one ever gets tired of hearing the words “Please” and “Thank you.”

23. Sometimes, you will have to judge someone. And they will deserve it.

24. A roll of duct tape, a pair of Channellock pliers and a good hammer. Almost anything can be fixed at least temporarily with one of those items.

25. Take $1,000. Hide it somewhere in the house. And don’t tell anyone else where it is.

26. Know that it’s OK to feel humble.

27. Some places where it’s OK to feel humble: Mt. Rushmore, Niagara Falls, Arlington National Cemetery, the Eiffel Tower and when you get home from the hospital after having your first child.

28. It’s better to take a steak off the grill 10 minutes early than leave it on one minute too long.

29. At times, there will be girls that are prettier than you, smarter than you, and better than you in school. Accept those situations. Because there will be times when you will be one of those girls who is prettier, smarter and better in school than someone else. And remember how it felt the other way.

30. Sorry, but you don’t always get your way.

31. Sometimes, you can say more with less. Want an example? Read the Gettysburg Address. It’s only about 260 words long.

32. Memorize the Gettysburg Address.

33. When you have to put your shoulder into closing your dresser drawers, it’s time to donate some of your clothes to charity.

34. Always tip your haircutter, your waiter, your garbage man, and if you see him or her, the pilot of any plane you fly in.

35. On a hot summer day, you will never regret drinking an ice-cold Coke.


Rex Crum


Please Register for the 2020-21 School Year!

If you have a student returning to OUSD next year, you need to register through the Aeries Data Confirmation system. Please follow the instructions here, and email Sherry Kaetzel at if you need your student’s ID number or passcode. If you have a new TK or Kindergarten student, enrollment will be through School Mint, and you’ll get separate instructions.


Read-a-thon Update

To celebrate how many Thunderbirds are participating in the Read-a-thon, Ms. Novak took a walk on her hands!

Now is a great time to motivate our students to keep up their reading! Share their reading with family members near and far. Turn those zoom calls with grandparents, uncles and aunts, and cousins into reading sessions by having your Thunderbird read to them or be read to.

The Read-a-thon will end on the last day of school: Thursday, May 28th, but keep an eye out for information about the Thornhill Summer Reading program which will come to you next week!

Check out the upcoming incentives and prizes:

If we raise $16,000, Ms. Fox will have her children throw a pie in her face and share the video - we are SO CLOSE!

If we raise $20,000, Ms. Fox will have a bucket of ice water dumped on her head by her children and share the video!

All families that signed up will receive a participation prize, which will be in their student's bags at personal pick-up next week. The top reader and top fundraiser in each class will receive a gift card to one of our local bookstores:

Mrs Dalloways, Mr. Mopps, or A Great Good Place for Books.

Let's keep at it, Thunderbirds, and finish this Read-a-thon strong!

Marie and Adimika


Pick Up, Take Away, Put Down!

Three school related action items coming up starting Tuesday, May 26!

  • Belongings Pick-Up!! For sure our kiddos left things behind, inside and outside the school building. Zettie created a helpful document detailing how we can safely come to Thornhill on May 26, May 27 and May 28 (scheduled depending on last name) and pick up left behind school and personal related items. Please review and follow the Personal Property Pick up Procedure and Schedule.

  • Lost-and-Found Curbside!! Starting the evening of May 25, all Lost and Found will be brought to Thornhill’s sidewalk by Bonnie Forbes for curbside pick-up. Of course, as in the case of everything now, please wear a mask and observe strict social distancing! Everything not claimed will be given away on June 1!!!

  • TerraCycle!! Final Thornhill collection of the year!! When you come to collect your kiddos’ belongings, please feel free to bring your collected TerraCycle chip and bar wrappers (all clean foil-lined wrappers)—we will send them off to get repurposed!


Thornhill has a New Puzzle Champion

Last week we shared photos of some Thornhill students who were pretty proud of themselves for their work on the Thornhill mural puzzle. Well, PFC VP of Communications Erin Proudfoot did this all by herself, with no help from her children. Nice try, kids, maybe next year.

Big picture


About the Thornhill Newsletter

The Thornhill Parent-Faculty Club (PFC) eNews team publishes this weekly newsletter each Tuesday in the school year to communicate school, PFC and OUSD news, events and information.

Email submissions to our Newsletter Chair, Evie Nagy, at by 8 p.m. Thursday for approval—nothing sent after this will be included in the following week’s newsletter unless there are extremely compelling extenuating circumstances. It’s fine to include text in the body of the email with links and no formatting, and attach photos preferably as 150 x 150, 72 dpi JPG or GIFs only (not embedded in email or Word file). Submissions may be edited for spelling, grammar, brevity and clarity. Advertising and items not related to Thornhill are not accepted, as we need to keep the newsletter focused on need-to-know info for the community.

THANK YOU to everyone who submits articles and to PFC Board Members, Teachers, VP of Communications Erin Proudfoot, PFC President Rex Crum, and Principal Steve Daubenspeck. Member of Oakland Unified School District (OUSD).