April 15, 2020
Welcome back. This is normally what I would be saying as we return from Spring Break, yet it feels odd this year, since we won't be seeing each other for a long time. So, I'll say welcome back to @Home Learning and the Alta Vista community connections.
On Monday, we returned to our @Home Learning program. Grade level teams are creating content that aligns more closely to Alta Vista. Although it will not look like the classroom experience from a few weeks ago, teachers will be using a toolbox of resources to provide learning opportunities and feedback. This will include synchronous and asynchronous connections.
Kindergarten and first grade will continue to utilize a weekly format that is shared through SeeSaw. Students in second through fifth grade will continue to access daily lessons and activities through Google Classroom. Although we will not be increasing the previous guidelines around time limits for Reading and Mathematics, students will continue to have access to a variety of extension activities. You will begin to see options such as P.E., Art Vistas, Project Cornerstone, and more. I would encourage you explore these opportunities.
If you haven't already, please visit Union School District's At-Home Learning website. You'll find details about our goals, instructional shifts, and grade level information. If you have questions, please reach out to your child's teacher or myself. We are committed to working together to support you, your child, and your family.
Love and Logic - Free Parent Access
With the closure of school buildings and the beginning of at home learning, families are facing unexpected challenges and increasing levels of stress. Since 1997, Love and Logic has been helping parents create happy, resilient and responsible children. During this challenging time, they are offering free access to their online parenting class. You will learn parenting tips such as how to end arguing and manipulation, avoid power struggles, teach responsibility, and more. To sign up for a free three-month subscription to the online modules, click on this link (https://www.loveandlogic.com/products/love-and-logic-parenting-online) before April 30th.
Remember to stay connected. Encourage your children to send me pictures of their TRY THIS challenge (see below), Spirit Day, or other @Home Learning activities. I also love getting emails from students and enjoy writing back to them. Don't forget follow me on Twitter (@TeamAltaVista) or post your own positive messages (#TeamAltaVista).
Take care and stay healthy.
COUGAR CORNER - NEW
- Check out this week's video message by clicking above! Here are a few highlights:
- Each Wednesday, I'll be sharing a TRY THIS challenge with you. It may be a puzzle, a design activity, or a community service suggestion. This week, I want to challenge you to TRY THIS ... Take some chalk to the sidewalk, driveway, or parking area near your home. Create a drawing or write a nice message for the people who walk by. When I'm going on walks, I've noticed chalk drawings on the sidewalk in my neighborhood. It always brightens my day. I love seeing these works of art, so I challenge you to add some drawings and messages that will make your neighbors smile. Be sure to send me a picture of your TRY THIS challenge.
- This Friday's @Home Spirit Day is Sports Day. Even if they can’t play now, we still love our teams. Share a picture of you wearing your favorite team’s t-shirt, jersey, or hat.
- Remember to get outside and take a Mileage Club walk. The weather is beautiful, so let's make the most of it. Don't forget to record your Mileage Club progress with the forms at the bottom of the newsletter. Share these updates with our parent volunteers (firstname.lastname@example.org) and me.
- Remember, every day is a great day to be an Alta Vista Cougar!
A Message from Mrs. Threet
Greetings Alta Vista students and parents.
I miss teaching music at Alta Vista, and I certainly miss seeing all of you students each week. I hope you are all staying healthy and occupied while we’re all sheltering in place. I know your teachers and Mrs. Bailey are working hard to keep up your academics during this time. I’m sure you will all do your best on your assignments.
I want to remind you to keep music as a part of your days at home. Whether you are practicing an instrument, listening to songs or instrumental music, or singing in the shower, music can be really important in stressful times. Music can help to ease our cares, lift our spirits, and brighten our days. You might even try to create a body percussion routine like we were doing in early March. I bet you can come of with some good ones.
For those of you who want to be really creative, our local classical station, KDFC, has issued a challenge called the #MakeSomeJoy Challenge. The station is challenging us to perform Beethoven’s Ode to Joy using homemade instruments. There are some very clever ideas posted. If you are interested, go to KDFC.com and look up the #MakeSomeJoy Challenge. You can upload videos of yourself playing your “creative” instruments.
I hope you all stay safe and healthy and I look forward to seeing you all soon.
Alta Vista Garden Corner
Melissa also shared some ideas for creating seedling pots at home:
- https://www.hgtv.com/design/make-and-celebrate/handmade/create-newspaper-pots-for-seed-starting-pictures - Even the youngest Cougars can join in making these newspaper pots.
- https://www.forgreenies.com/origami-newspaper-seedling-pots - With a little more effort, older children can create these origami seedling pots.
Look for more gardening ideas in upcoming newsletters. Thanks to Melissa for all of her hard work in bringing the Alta Vista garden back to life and keeping it going while the buildings are closed.
COUGAR PRIDE - MINDFULNESS
Below you will find two videos for students. Both are part of an excellent Class Dojo video series. The first introduces the concept of mindfulness and the second teaches mindful breathing. I encourage you to sit down with your child to watch the videos and practice the deep breathing exercises together. Mindful breathing is an excellent strategy to balance our emotions and the stressful situations in the coming days and weeks.