Ohlone Family Connection

March 10, 2021

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Beauty of the Farm

I thought I would share some pictures of our beloved farm with you. Many of our students are missing this Ohlone treasure. Iris, Elke, S'mores, and King miss them right back. The chickens are on the fence (literally) and the bees are indifferent ;). The animals are happy for their visits with some of our hybrid classes. They are looking forward to some good old fashioned head scratches when we are all back together in the fall. They certainly need social connection, too.

There is much happening in our classrooms and in our community. K/1 is launching their farm unit where students will create a model of their own farm through purchasing land, materials, and livestock with "farm bucks". 2/3 is introducing the Ohlone Native American unit and are collaborating on their series of culminating activities in May. Our 4/5 Cluster has begun their Gold Rush Unit and will have their simulation the week before spring break. Our teachers have begun thoughtful inquiry in looking at our simulations through an anti-racist and equity lens. They have found exciting and creative ways to reach all students during our time apart and together.

As you know, we are working through details to bring back two full classes, five days per week, as part of a pilot program. We will be restructuring rooms and reorganizing our play zones in order to accommodate the larger classes. This pilot will help to inform our return in the fall so that we are prepared to welcome and transition students back full-time in August.

March is busy! Check out the calendar below. Ohlone is still the place to be. I wish you and your family happiness, joy and good health. Take care!


Ohlone Principal

On the March Horizon

3/11 - Parent Leadership Team (PLT) - 12:30-1:15

3/15 - Local Holiday - No school for students

3/17 - BIPOC Affinity Group - 6:30-7:30pm

3/20 - K/ 1 Farm Work Day - 9-12 - All Welcome

3/22 - Middle Schools and 5th Grade Zoom Visit

3/22 - Farm Council Meeting - 12:30-2:00

3/22 - Principal's Informational Tea for Rooms 5 & 12 - 2:30pm

3/23 - PTA Executive Board Meeting - 3:15-4:45

3/23 - PAUSD Board Meeting - 6:30pm

3/24 - Student Council Meeting - 3:00-3:45

3/24 - Ohlone Times - 3:45-4:30

3/24 - Principal's EquiTea with Dawn and Lana Conaway - 4:00-5:00 (tentative)

3/24 - Oren's Hummus Express Takeout/Dine Outside Fundraiser - Say "Ohlone" :)

Bed to Honor African American Farmers

The pictures above are from my time on the farm with John and Room 27 students today. John is leading the charge in starting a bed that will commemorate African American farmers. The seeds are either from Africa or have been preserved as heritage seeds by African American farmers. We would not have the varieties we have today without them.

There are fish peppers, Paul Robeson Tomatoes (see the 90 second video below), and something called Jelly Melon that I can't wait to try. It's actually just fun to say. John and Coach Bryant will be working together to create QR codes for informational voiceovers about the vegetables. Our Room 27 helpers were a great help! We look forward to having more students tend to this important garden bed. So exciting!

Here’s a link to a group that has been an inspiration for the project: https://trueloveseeds.com/collections/african-diaspora-collection

We also need a sign for the garden bed. If you have an artistic streak, we would love some help with a painted wooden sign. Email John if you are interested! jdiscosmo@pausd.org

Paul Robeson

A Message About Class Placement

We have been through a number of changes over these last two school years. We understand that consistency is important for child development. We have also learned a lot about the resiliency of our students during this challenging time, for ourselves as well.

The district will be sending a "temperature check" survey to get a sense of how many families may wish to choose distance learning for another school year for their children. Once we have all of the necessary information, we will begin our thoughtful discussions around creating balanced classrooms to support all students. There will be some movement. We will need to rebalance disproportionate numbers of Youngers and Olders that were created by the learning model choices and staffing shifts made this year.

Please know that we are keeping students' social-emotional well-being at center. I will send out more information about class placement toward the end of the school year. As always, specific class placements will be shared the week before school begins in the fall.

New Guidance for Cleaning Play Structures

I wanted to share a quick update regarding the cleaning of play structures. According to new state guidance, when hand hygiene is emphasized, cleaning of outdoor play structures is no longer required between cohorts. The guidance states that playgrounds and natural play areas only need routine maintenance.

We will be cleaning our play structures once per day before the first recess. Please know that we will ensure that children wash or sanitize their hands before and after using these spaces. This will provide us with much more flexibility in how we use our play zones.

If you would like to review the state’s guidance on cleaning playground structures, you can find that information on page 28 in the link here.

Summer Camp Auction and Community-Building Parties open now!

Bidding and signups open today, March 10th at 5pm!

Message from Ohlone PTA:

Enrich your child's summer while contributing to the PTA-supported education. Local owners have donated spaces in 14 summer camps and activities for kids and adults for our auction, plus the dedicated parking spaces all up for auction.

On top of that, fellow Ohlone parents have answered our call for party hosts and we have a variety of online and in-person parties for kids and adults to connect our Ohlone community! Party sign-ups are first come, first served so make sure to grab your spot this week.

Browse the catalog at: https://sites.google.com/view/ohlone-auction/catalog/

We Need You! Open PTA Positions

PTA is a great way to get involved with our community. Plus, it's the most fun group ever. Please consider joining us!

Open positions:

  • Co-VP for Ways and Means
  • Co-VP for Enrichment
  • EVP
  • Historian

Click below for descriptions. Open positions are highlighted in yellow.

2021-22 Open PTA Exec Board Positions

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Farm Work Day - March 20, 9-12 noon

Please join us Saturday, March 20th for some fun while helping with routine maintenance on our beloved Farm. No experience necessary! All K-1 classrooms are invited to volunteer, FDL and Hybrid. Parents from these classes are asked to volunteer to help for 1 hour during this time frame, if possible. As always, everyone is welcome!

Questions? Email Kathy Howe, Farm Council Co-Chair @ Kathryn.howe@gmail.com

Parent Education

PAUSD Parenting Support Series - Free

March 16 - How Cultural and Generational Differences Impact Parenting - No cost

March 23 - Stress, Depression & Anxiety: Understanding Children's Mental Health - No cost

March 30 - Reduce Internet Overuse - No cost

Register through Eventbrite

March 16 - In the Middle: Caring for Aging Parents While Raising Kids - Fee

Schedules and Free Play Balance

Encouraging Creativity