Penguin Press News

December 3, 2019


Dear LPE Families,

I hope that each of you enjoyed the Thanksgiving holiday and long weekend! My family enjoyed spending time with grandparents, cousins, and friends. As we enter a very busy time of the year for families, I thought I would share an interesting article about how to support our young people during the holiday/ winter season:

Gentle reminder: All parents/ family members who visit LPE during the school day need to check in at the front office before heading to another location in the building. If a parent/ family member intends to visit a classroom, they must be cleared to do so by the front office. We do not allow visitors to the classrooms without approval first. This includes dropping off lunches, forgotten bookbags, etc.

For families interested in applying for a track change for the 2020-2021 school year, please see the request form found at the bottom of this newsletter. All forms are due to the front office no later than February 28th, 2020.

Mark your calendars:

    • December 5th - CogAT parent meeting (5:30-6:30 pm)

    • December 7th - Weather Make-up Saturday (1,3,4) (9:15 am - 12:45 pm)

    • December 23rd - January 1st - Winter Break (school closed for students)

Happy Holidays!

Kind Regards,

Raleigh G. Bame




Garden Club Updates for December

Fall 2019 LPES garden update! We were busy Sept. thru Nov. planting cool weather crops such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, & cabbage (just to name a few!). Other favorites included harvesting 50+ lbs of sweet potatoes, and popping & eating the popcorn that we grew! We are so incredibly grateful for these amazing, hard-working students who, over the past 5 months alone, have grown & harvested 140 pounds of fresh & healthy produce, all donated to the local food pantry.
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What is First Lego League?

FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) is a program that supports children and youngsters in order to introduce them to science and technology in a sporty atmosphere.

The objective is to:

  1. Make children and youngsters enthusiastic about science and technology
  2. To equip the participants with the idea of team spirit
  3. To encourage children and youngsters to solve complex tasks in a creative way

The basis of FLL is a robotics tournament in a cheerful atmosphere, where kids and youngsters need to solve a tricky “mission” with the help of a robot. The kids are researching a given topic within a team, they are planning programming and testing an autonomous robot to solve the mission. Student teams develop their individual robot based on the LEGO Mindstorms® system (EV3).

This year our school had 5 teams participate in FLL, attending tournaments across the state in November and December. Our school is incredibly lucky to have Mindstorm systems available to support students in this program, in addition to funds from our generous PTA and grants from John Deere. In addition, parent coaches and parent volunteers have given countless hours and support to participating students in order to ensure they have the best experience possible. This truly wouldn't be possible without them!

Congratulations to Our LPES 2019-2020 FLL Teams:

Team Name: Link to Your Future

1. Aurora Harris

2. Ian Lewis

3. Kay Hardin

4. Steven Moyer

5. Cadence D’Aurellio

6. Emma Fok

7. Dylan Link

8. Natalie Bryant

Team Name: Skyscraper Squad

1. Advay Gaonkar

2. Aidan Capellini

3. Lincoln Berry

4. Eric Zhu

5. Nicholas Tandradinata

6. Lucas Stein


1. Andrew Shin

2. Dexter Marino

3. Lucy Hill

4. Naomi Monk

5. Nathan Manrique-Ardila

6. Sophie Powell

7. Davis Volpe

8. Kai Alesio

Team Name: Epic Gamers

1. Maya Mahesh

2. Oliver Fields

3. Raina Thomas

4. Olivia Burke

5. Pari Shah

6. John Olender

Team Name: Exploding Creepers

1. Adhithi Balaji

2. Julia Murphy

3. Caleb Jaquillard

4. Dain Curtin

5. Jackson Fickler

6. Andres Hayes

7. Ronit Nimesh

Science Fair 2019

It’s time to get ready for Science Fair again! Projects in the 3-5 experiment category will be due at school on January 6 or 7, and projects in the other 2 categories will be coming in January 17 or Jan 21.

Science Fair chairs this year are Mary Masui and Laurel Voelker. You can reach us at Ms. Trent is our teacher contact.

Complete details can be found on the LPES PTA website. ( )

Students can enter in different categories based on grade level and the type of project. Kids can work in groups of up to 3 students. Students should feel free to work with students in different classes or even grades, as long as everyone in the group fits within the grade category they are entering. (ie, A 1st grader and a 2nd grader could do a joint project, but not a 2nd grader and a 3rd grader). Some of our best entries last year were submitted by a siblings of different ages working together.

Categories are:

  • K-2: All students in Grades K-2 will enter in this category. Students may work alone or in groups of up to 3 students. Awesome prizes will be awarded for things like Best Science, Best Display, Most Creative Project, Messiest Project and other fun stuff! These projects may be an experiment, model, or report. Students in this age group are not eligible for the Regional Science Fair.

  • 3-5 Model/Demonstration/Report: This category is for students in Grades 3-5 who are interested in building a scientific model or doing a demonstration or report of a scientific topic rather than doing an experiment. For example, the entries in this category might be a model of the solar system or water cycle. Students may work alone or in a group of no more than 3 students. Prizes will be awarded for the best entries in this category, as well as other fun honorable mentions. Since these projects are not experiments, they are not eligible for the Regional Science Fair.

  • 3-5 Experiment: This category is for students in Grades 3-5. Projects in this category must include experimentation and follow the Scientific Method. Students may work alone or in a group of no more than 3 students. Prizes will be awarded for the best entries in this category, as well as other fun honorable mentions. The top 3 projects and 1 alternate will be chosen to move to the Regional Science Fair

Students can find the link to registration at Registration will close December 15.

You’ll soon be getting flyers to send home in Monday folders. There will also be announcements about the fair and a display in the hallway coming soon. We hope that you’ll help us promote the fair by talking to your students and mentioning it in your weekly emails to parents. Please share the link to the website ( )

We also found a great set of short videos (5min each) from NASA that walk students through the steps of a project and the Scientific Method ( . Showing these would be an easy way to get students interested. In addition, if you would like one of the science fair chairs to visit your class, let us know. There are links to many other resources on the website.

We are also looking for judges. If you have parents in your class or friends/family members with experience in the Sciences, please encourage them to sign up. This will be a one -time commitment of around 2 hours. Judging for the youngest kids (K-2 category) is fairly simple, and would also be a great experience for a high-schooler or college student. The link to the judging sign-up is here: .

Thank you so much for all you do for our students! If you have any ideas or suggestions or need assistance in any way, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

Contact Info:

Laurel Voelker ,

Mary Masui


That would be great! Also the STEAM night volunteer link and the calling all STEAM people link too. Here is what is on the PTA link:

January 23, 2020
​5:30-7:30 PM
Join us for an evening of learning!
Hands-On-Activities ⧫ Demonstrations ⧫ Food Trucks ⧫ & More
STEAM for kids, Apex Friendship Engineering, NC State, NC Air Quality and more!

Interested in volunteering at STEAM Night?
Please sign up through this link:

Do you know any Scientist?
Tech People? Engineers? Artists?
Mathematicians? Do these people like to have fun with elementary kids?
​We are starting to plan for our STEAM Night and are looking for companies and individuals to provide hands-on/interactive activities for our students. Fill in the Google form through the link below if you are interested in sharing your talents!
Exhibitor Interest Form

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Ms. Trent -

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Laurel Park Spring Fun Run Volunteers Needed

We are THRILLED to be hosting our *very own* Laurel Park FUN RUN in March for our students!

We will be using Boosterthon to help organize secure donations but this will allow us to keep more of the gracious donations that we receive during this fundraiser!

With this exciting change, we are looking for a LOT our Penguin Community to volunteer any time to help us organize this event and make it the best year yet for our students and our school!

Please follow the link below to find a sign up for our current planning needs!

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Grocery Store Rewards Cards

Laurel Park Community Calendar

Please click on this link to view our daily calendar. Thank you!