HOLA Families Newsletter Dec 12th

Holbrook Language Academy

Message from Principal Orellana

Dear HOLA School Community,

I hope you had a nice and relaxing weekend. I hope you enjoyed the rain and the lovely Holidays Decorations all around!

We started in the Holiday Spirit with our Winterfest! Thank you to all families who came to the Winterfest: our Jets were so excited to learn and "travel" to so many interesting and beautiful countries!! We had the following countries represented at the festival: Mexico, Colombia, Ghana, Egypt, Italy and Argentina. Our ballet folklorico delighted us with more dances: We are so proud of them! Thank you, PFC for hosting this school event that helps us continue to foster cross-cultural competence and coming together as a school community.

Below you have school and district updates. There is a section below with Winter Break Ideas that is shared in no particular order but with the intention of providing resources for family fun during the break.

I am adding below the Winter workshops that PFC is offering for After School Enrichment.


Just a reminder that our School Site Council (SSC) Meetings will be held on the second Monday of the month.

Dates for the Year:

09/ 29, 10/24,11/14, 12/12, 01/09, 02/13, 03/13, 04/10, 05/08. All HOLA parents are welcome. Only SSC members are able to vote.

Kwanzaa 2022: Dr. Francies is organizing a wonderful Kwanzaa celebration on December 20th at Riverview Middle School. All families are welcome to attend. See the invitation below.

Have a great week!

- Principal Orellana

#WeAreHolbrook #SomosHolbrook #HOLAseis #HOLAproud

School Updates

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CARES program News

Our CARES program is starting the Winter Sports for Middle School. All Middle School students are invited to be part of the basketball team. Students do not need to be part of the CARES program to participate in the CARES Basketball team. All students are welcome!

See the categories below. Ms. Guzman, our Program Coordinator, will be providing flyers with information.

Middle School students will participate in an Intra district Sports competition. Winter Sports will be Basketball and in the Spring will be Soccer.

We are encouraging students to be part of one of the following teams:


6th/7th girls
8th girls

6th/7th boys
8th boys

Go, Jets!!

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PFC News

HOLA Jet Families!

Today, December 12, we have a Dine and donate at Nick the Greek from 4:00pm-10:00 pm at 2075 Diamond Blvd, concord, 94520. Please, help our PFC by dining at this place tonight!


We are creating a beautiful feast to feed our staff as they head off to break on 12/21. If you are able to participate, please sign up below.



Our last PFC meeting of 2022 will be Tuesday 12/20 in room 20 - please join us if you are able to!


Don't forget our December Month of giving - you can donate as much or as little as you would like based on what you'd like to see your money go to!

Click below to donate now! There is a donations box in the office as well.


Ideas during Winter Break

The holiday season is in full swing, and with it, comes winter vacation, a welcome break in the school year for students and parents. While a few weeks off from the day-to-day schoolwork is important (and well-deserved!) there are lots of fun ways to incorporate learning during the break. Try these fun winter break activities to keep kids engaged and learning throughout the break, without it seeming like a chore.

1. Read holiday books together.

Incorporate reading time into your holiday plans. Try reading favorite holiday books together, or these holiday-themed stories from classic literary characters. If you’re traveling, take some audiobooks along to keep kids engaged on the plane or in the car.

2. Practice writing skills with seasonal writing projects.

Many favorite holiday activities are perfect opportunities to practice writing skills. Have kids write letters to Santa or try these Christmas journaling prompts. If you send a family Christmas letter, invite kids to help write it or have kids express gratitude and get some practice in too, by writing thank you notes for gifts received. Use these activities to brainstorm, practice the writing process, and learn to address letters.

3. Explore your family heritage.

Many families spend the holiday season with extended family near and far. If you’ll be visiting grandparents and other older relatives, it’s a great opportunity to encourage kids to take an interest in learning about their family heritage. Try having kids interview relatives about what life was like when they were growing up and about your family’s cultural heritage. Kids could even create a family history book or family tree with what they learn.

4. Discover the history of winter holidays.

Did you know that many favorite Christmas traditions, from caroling and Christmas trees to decorating with poinsettias, have very long histories? Spend some time learning about the traditions you incorporate into your holidays and about the origins of winter holidays and traditions around the world. Or discover the history of Santa Claus and the Santa Tracker.

5. Create art.

Practice art skills by spending time doing crafts, making ornaments or holiday cards, creating handmade gifts and decorations, or decorating wrapping paper. Find more fun art activities on our Arts Education and Crafts Pinterest boards.

6. Explore science, engineering, technology, and math.

Discover the science of snowflakes, the history of winter inventions, or try a science experiment like this crystal snowflake. With time off from the busy school year, you may also find you have more time for fun activities like LEGO learning activities or home science experiments.

7. Cook up a lesson.

There’s a lot to learn in the kitchen! Try baking Christmas cookies or have kids help prepare your holiday feast.

8. Play educational games.

Turn family game night into a learning opportunity by choosing one of these fun educational board games. You can also keep skills sharp and have fun with free educational games, activities, worksheets, and coloring pages. While kids shouldn’t spend the whole break being couch potatoes, they could do worse than to spend some time playing an educational game like Minecraft.

9. Get outside and play.

Even if it’s cold, staying active year-round is important, and as long as you’re properly bundled up, it can be lots of fun too! Try these easy ways to keep kids active in the winter.

10. Learn a new skill or supplement learning.

Explore robotics or learning to code, or try learning a new language with Duolingo.

Finally, winter break is the perfect time to supplement learning with an online program. Check out our EmbarK12 preschool program, Noodleverse Language Arts, or a World Language course for grades 3–12. The opportunity to learn something new is a perfect holiday gift, as well as a fun winter break activity.

Source: https://www.learningliftoff.com/11-fun-winter-break-activities/


Fun family Activities for Hannukkah

Celebration Inspiration is all about bringing you topnotch advice and creative ideas to make the most of life’s special moments. Whether you’re celebrating a birthday or going all out for a holiday, we’re here to share decorating tips, gifting advice, and fun, festive ways you can make a lasting impression!

Hanukkah (חֲנֻכָּה), also known as “The Festival of Lights,” means much more than exchanging Hanukkah gifts and lighting candles eight nights in a row. It’s a celebration that brings families together to share and enjoy age-old customs that have been passed down from one generation to the next. So start some new and exciting traditions with your loved ones this holiday season; try out these fun family activities for Hanukkah!

DIY menorah

Gather everyone ’round the kitchen table and have each family member create their own menorah out of any supplies you have lying around the house: food (apples are a great option), glass bottles, clay, Play-Doh or paper towel tubes. It’s the perfect opportunity to get your creative juices flowing!

Playing dreidel

1.Play a Traditional Game of Dreidel: The traditional game of dreidel is probably one of the most well-known Hanukkah activities to play with the family! There are four Hebrew letters on the dreidel to go along with the game, including “nun,” “gimmel,” “hey” and “shin,” each with a different meaning. Not sure how to play dreidel? My Jewish Learning has a great article on how to play dreidel to help you learn and start having some fun!

2.Dreidel Spinning Contest: Add a “spin” to the traditional dreidel game! As a fun change of pace, hold a contest to see who in the family can whirl a dreidel and make it spin the longest.

Hanukkah gelt (chocolate coin) scavenger hunt

What is Hanukkah without the gelt? Have fun with Hanukkah chocolates! Before your guests arrive, hide those delicious little chocolate coins throughout the house. After dinner, break everyone up into teams and search for them. Whoever finds the most coins wins a prize, in addition to the chocolate.

3.Hanukkah bake-off

Find some Hanukkah-themed cookie cutters and whip up some yummy holiday desserts with your kids. Put your own personal touch on the cookies by decorating them with blue and white icing and sprinkles.

4. Make-your-own Hanukkah magnets

Hanukkah magnets not only make the perfect kitchen decorations for the holiday season, but are also fun to make with the family! Set out some wooden craft sticks, children’s paint, glue and glitter, and have your kids make the Star of David by gluing the sticks together and decorating them. Stick an old magnet behind the star and display the kids’ art on the fridge. Menorah magnets are another fun option and feel free to be creative with the materials used!

5.Hanukkah garland

Give the little ones some scissors and multicolored construction paper, and ask them to cut out some Stars of David and dreidels. (The adults can help out too!) When they’re all done, string the shapes together and hang up the garland across the living room window for some festive Hanukkah décor!

6.Festival of Lights potluck

Ask your family members to each bring their own traditional Hanukkah food so everyone can join in the deliciousness of the holiday! To spice things up a bit more, try to put a modern twist on classic traditions. Need some inspiration? Why not try sweet potato latkes this year? For jelly doughnuts, perhaps try using different kinds of jellies?

7. Hanukkah family sing-alongs

Gather everyone around the menorah and sing Hanukkah favorites like “I Have A Little Dreidel” and “Oh Chanukah! Oh Chanukah!” If you have singers or musician in the group, make sure they bring their musical instruments to take the lead!

8. Pass the Hanukkah candle

Light a large candle and have the elders of the family pass it among each other, one by one. Each time someone receives the candle, they have to tell their favorite Hanukkah story to the youngsters.

Which Hanukkah traditions will you be passing on to your kids this year?

Source: https://www.1800flowers.com/blog/floral-occasions-holidays/fun-family-activities-for-hanukkah/


Fun activities to celebrate Kwanzaa

Kwanzaa was created by Dr. Maulana Karenga in 1966 to celebrate connection and community among African families. For each of the seven days of Kwanzaa, a candle is lit to commemorate one of the seven principles: unity, self-determination, responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.

This collection of engaging resources features colorful crafts, educational lessons, and traditional stories designed to bring this meaningful holiday to life.

1. Weave a Kwanzaa Mkeka Mat

A mkeka is a woven straw mat and is one of the seven symbols of Kwanzaa, signifying the importance of beginning all projects with a strong foundation.

Age Group: Elementary

2. Make a Kwanzaa Kinara

A kinara holds seven candles, each representing one of the values of Kwanzaa. All you need for this homemade version are recycled cardboard tubes, paint, and shimmering sequins.

Learn more: Crafting a Fun Life

3. Play Kwanzaa Bingo

What better way to celebrate African culture than with a game of bingo? Students can learn about important Kwanzaa traditions while having lots of fun!

Age Group: Elementary

Learn more: Crayola

4. Read a Favorite Kwanzaa Story

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This beautifully illustrated book celebrates family roots and traditions all while teaching one of the core principles of Kwanzaa - coming together to help others.

Age Group: Preschool, Elementary

5. Make a Custom Unity Cup

Making a handcrafted unity cup is a wonderful opportunity to share with children the importance of coming together as a family and community.

Age Group: Elementary, Middle School

Learn more: HGTV

6. Sing a Kwanzaa Song

A festive song is a great way to teach children about the traditional colors of this holiday celebration and the ritual of lighting candles for each of the seven days. Why not let kids choose some fun dance moves to accompany their singing?

Learn more: The Kiboomers - Kids Music Channel

7. Make a Kinara with Construction Paper

Writing each of the Nguzo Saba or seven principles of Kwanzaa on these construction paper candles is a terrific way to reinforce student learning about this cultural holiday.

Age Group: Elementary

Learn more: Crayola

8. Make a Paper Chain Craft

Using red, green, and black construction paper and a little ingenuity, this festive garland craft makes a lovely homemade gift during this weeklong celebration.

Age Group: Elementary

Learn more: Free Kids Craft

Age Group: Elementary

Learn more: Craft Project Ideas

Source: https://www.teachingexpertise.com/classroom-ideas/kwanzaa-activities/

PFC After School enrichment workshops

Enrichment Classes start 1/17. No school 2/20 and 3/13. Sessions are 10 weeks long unless noted otherwise.
Note the end dates.

Clapclap2Spanish and iHeartArt both have a Spanish component.

Classes are 8 - 10 weeks.

Students are to sign in with CARES before going to their enrichment class. Parents/Guardians will sign students out at the MU/Cafeteria.

If you have not filled out a CARES emergency card this school year, please do so: MDUSD_expanded_learning_program_emergency_card.pdf

Click here for Vendor Descriptions

Questions, email: hola.enrichment@gmail.com



1:45 - 2:50



Start date 1/23, no school 2/20, 3/13, ends 3/27

8 weeks


3:00 - 4:00




3:00 - 4:00


-email: blackdragonchess@gmail.com -Include your child’s name, grade, parent phone #, -Payments via PayPal: blackdragonchess@gmail.com OR Venmo: @JB-McCann (last 4 digits of phone #: 0814)

Sports Medley


1:45 – 2:45


Register Here



3:00 - 4:00


Register here




3:00 - 4:30



Ends 3/21

i Heart Art*

TK - K

1:45 – 2:45





1 - 5

1:50 - 2:50


-email: wccapoeira@gmail.com
-Include your child’s name, grade, parent phone #

Ends 3/22


Hip Hop


1:45 - 2:45



Ends 3/23


3:00 - 4:00



i Heart Art*


3:00 - 4:00



No class 2/17. Ends 3/31



3:00 - 4:30



9 week sessions. No class 2/17
Ends 3/24

Musical Theater


3:00 - 5:00



8 weeks. Musical Theater will have their last class/production on 3/17. Please see the Vendor description for more details.

📆 Upcoming Events

December 12: Dine and donate at Nick the Greek from 4:00-10pm

December 12: SSC Meeting at 3:00pm

December 16: Cafecito con la Directora at 8:30 am

December 20: PFC Meeting at 6:00pm in Room 20

December 22-January 6: Winter Recess

January 9: School resumes

Holbrook Language Academy

TK-8 Two Immersion Dual Language School

MDUSD Language Magnet School