Wade King Elementary

March 2020

A Note from the Principal

Dear Wade King Families,

February was Black History Month. This was a time to recognize the achievements of African American people who have shaped the history of our country. There were several ways our school community recognized Black History Month during our school meetings, in our classrooms, and as part of our library information science time with Mrs. Hunter.

Bessie Coleman and Amelia Earhart were the focus of a February School Meeting. Both were young women in the same time period, with the same dream of becoming pilots. However, we learned that their journeys to becoming a pilot were very different because of their race.

This learning continued in the library. Mrs. Hunter, our librarian, collaborated with classroom teachers to provide learning experiences in the library that support grade level I.B. units of inquiry. Our first graders were learning about different genres of music as part of their ‘How We Express Ourselves’ unit of inquiry. Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger became favorite folk singers. In the library, Mrs. Hunter had students listen to a short audio clip of a singer/songwriter that Bob, Woody and Pete all learned from. After listening to the audio clip, students were asked to picture the artist in their mind. Almost every student pictured some variation of a white cowboy and students were amazed to learn it was actually Elizabeth Cotton, who was an African American woman. Another day, Mrs. Hunter had our first graders name Classical composers they had learned about. They knew Mozart and Beethoven and were curious to know more about one of Mrs. Hunter's favorite classical pianists, who was also a jazz artist. Mrs. Hunter played a song by Nina Simone without telling them who it was. Once again, they pictured a white man and were shocked to see an African American woman. These experiences helped students question their assumptions and learn about important African American musicians.

Meanwhile, in 4th and 5th grade, Mrs. Hunter asked students to name inventors. Each class came up with a long list, and when they realized they had only listed white male inventors, they logged on to laptops to research African American inventors and found many.

Black History Month has come to an end, but this learning has not. We want Wade King students to question who they have learned about, and whose story might be missing. This not only applies to African Americans, but to all people of color. We want our students to understand the contributions of individuals from all races.

Please continue to reach out to me if you have questions or ideas to strengthen our school community. Your voice is really important to me.

With Gratitude,

Stephanie Johnson, Principal

Important Dates in March and April

3/6 No School for Students: Teacher Inservice Day

3/12 PTA Meeting 6-8 pm in library (childcare provided)

3/15 Mobile Dental Clinic in morning

3/18 5th Grade Exhibition 6:30-7:30 pm

3/20 2nd Grade Musical: Mungarro 8:40 am, Samuelsen 1:00 pm, Fleenor 1:50 pm

3/23 1st Grade Field Trip to Mt Baker Theater 9:30-11:30 am

3/25 BAAY Dress Rehearsal in the gym 2:30-3:30 pm

3/25 King Consort Final Performance 6:30-7:30 pm

3/26 PTA Family Art Night 6:00-7:30 pm

3/30 1st Grade Field Trip to WWU 11:30 am-1:30 pm

4/1 BAAY Drama Performance 5:00 pm

4/2 BAAY Drama Performance 8:10 am

4/3 After School Playground Play Date (info below)

4/6-4/10 NO SCHOOL: Spring Break

WK Wolves - Student Leadership Team

The Wade King Wolves Student Leadership Team has started meeting. This is a group of 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students who are responsible for helping us solve school problems and for planning fun community-building activities for our whole school. We had our first Leadership Team meeting last week. Our kindergarteners and 1st graders have a voice too! Their older buddies will join their class meetings to share the work of the Student Leadership Team and solicit ideas from them.

Keeping our Community Safe and Healthy

Our school district health and safety staff will continue to be in communication with state and county health officials who are monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely. Health agencies will provide recommendations to our school district as needed. Our district website will also be updated regularly for families with ongoing information about this topic.

At Wade King, we are continuing to clean and disinfect our school daily. We are also reminding students and staff of the importance of good handwashing and covering any cough or sneeze with their elbow, rather than hand. This is the best prevention for any communicable disease. If your child is not feeling well, please keep him/her home. You can call the attendance line at (360) 647-6840 ext. 1 OR email us so we can excuse your child’s absence due to illness. Finally, if your own children have questions about the virus, this comic may be a helpful tool.

Salmon in our Schools

Have you checked out our large salmon tank on the second floor? Our students have been watching our small fry turn into fish. Students have been learning about the salmon life cycle and observed their growth from small eggs to swimming fish. This is a great learning opportunity for our students!

PTA Mtg - Thursday, March 12th from 6-8pm

Our PTA invites everyone to join their meetings in the Wade King library on the second Thursday of each month. During this meeting, we will talk about holiday celebrations at school, opportunities to learn Positive Discipline parenting strategies, and plan for our Talent Show and spring events. There will be supervision for school-aged children in the gym! We hope you can come!

PTA Family Art Night - March 26th 6:00-7:30 pm

Our PTA has planned an Art Family Night on March 26th. Families can come and make an Ethiopian inspired bead bracelet and listen to fantastic Ethiopian music.

We are in need of volunteers for this event.

You are encouraged to help if you can.

We hope to see your family at this event!

Playground Play Dates

As the weather gets nicer, and to help families connect, we invite you to join us for playground time after school on the first Friday of the month. If you are able to pick up your child from school on Friday, April 3rd, May 1st, and/or June 5th, join us for playtime and conversation.

Families are responsible for supervising their own children.

Talent Show - Can You Help?

PTA has sponsored a Talent Show each year. This year's Talent Show was originally scheduled for March, but has been rescheduled to Friday, May 22nd. We are in need of volunteers! Please contact Adita if you might be able to help!

3rd, 4th, and 5th Grade Smarter Balanced State Assessment

Each spring, our intermediate students take state assessments to measure English language arts (ELA), mathematics and science proficiency. Wade King students will be taking these assessments between mid-April and the end of May. We will be sharing specific assessment dates with families soon.

Dessert Auction and Family Game Night - Thank You!

Wow! We had a great turn out for our Family Game Night on February 13th. We played Bingo and Jeopardy with Ethiopian trivia. Our annual Dessert Auction was also a wonderful success raising $1085 for our PTA. Thank you to everyone who contributed delectable treats for the auction.

School Levy Facts - THANK YOU

Thank you to everyone who voted to support our School District Levy. The support from our community is wonderful! This Levy helps our children grow and learn im so many areas. Did you know that our levies cover nearly 25 percent of the cost of educational services not adequately funded by the state?

Our renewed Operations Levy will be put to good use paying for teachers, nurses, and other staff which helps lower class sizes. Levies also fund basic operations and programs such as safety, Special Education, English Language Learners, and our Highly Capable program. The Levy provide arts, music, athletics, food services, wellness programs, field trips , and Project Free Education.

Our Technology Capital Levy pays for school wired/wireless networks, adaptive technologies and devices for children with special needs, computer, software, and digital curriculum licensing, and one to one tech support to prepare students for the future. The Tech Levy also pays for maintenance of tech equipment and training, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) support and CTE (Career and Technical Education) support. We are also able to replace maintenance equipment and vehicles, provide portables and replacement windows in some of our schools. The Technology Capital Levy also provides education of online safety, empathy, responsibility, and digital citizenship.

Thank you to our community for supporting our school and future of our children through your approval of these Levies. We are able to accomplish great things together as a community.

Parent Bookshelf

Did you know there is a shelf of books for parents to check out in our office? There are several titles you might be interested in, including Positive Discipline parenting books that align with the Positive Discipline strategies we use across our school. Be sure to check this out the next time you are in the office!

Safe Schools Reporting and Tip LIne

Did you know the Bellingham School District has a Safe Schools Reporting and Tip Line Students, parents or community members who have information, tips, or concerns regarding a safety issue in our schools are encouraged to text or call 844-310-9560 or visit bellinghamschools.org/safe for confidential, anonymous, two-way communication with our safety staff.

The Census is Coming Soon!

Did you know that April 1, 2020 is Census Day?

The U.S. Census Bureau will send you an invitation to respond online to the 2020 Census between March 12-20. Responding to the Census helps our community get its fair share of funding. Census data guides how more than $675 billion in federal funding is distributed to states and communities each year for schools, health care facilities, roads, transportation, recreation centers, social services and more.

Starting in March 2020, everyone living in your home needs to be counted. That includes children and newborn babies, citizens and non-citizens, relatives and nonrelatives, and even those staying with you temporarily. You can complete the Census online, by phone or by mail. Your responses are safe and secure. The law requires the U.S. Census Bureau to keep your information confidential, and your responses cannot be used against you in any way.

Learn more about how you can shape your future at 2020census.gov.

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