Kulshan Connect

October 8, 2021

In our Kulshan Community, we are courageous, kind, and committed!

Thurs, Oct 14: KMS Open House

We have rescheduled our Kulshan Open House! We invite you to join us for this online Zoom event at 6:30 PM on Thursday, October 14. In our webinar, you will hear from our administrators, counselors, librarian, Ed Tech coach, and our PTSA president. Here is the Zoom link. We look forward to this event!

Kulshan Teacher Videos

We couldn't be in person for Open House, but our Kulshan teachers wanted to connect with you personally! Each teacher made a video showcasing a little bit of their personality, teaching style, and curriculum. Click this link to view a list of all of the KMS videos. Then take a minute to find your child's teachers' videos. Enjoy!

Thur, Oct 28: Picture Retake Day

Are you wanting a picture retake? If you ordered photos, please bring your original package on Picture Retake Day. You can still order photos on mylifetouch.com. Our KMS Picture Day ID code is EVTJXZHGJ.

Wed, Oct 27: Kulshan @ MOD Pizza

Support Kulshan ASB by eating pizza! Get dinner (or lunch! Or both!) at MOD pizza on Wednesday, October 27, and support Kulshan ASB and this year's charity partner, Northwest Youth Services! Mention "Kulshan ASB" when you order in person or by phone, or use the code GR204669K for online or app orders. Tell your friends, relatives, and neighbors, too!

Sign Up for your November Conference

Our November student-family-teacher conferences are right around the corner. Conferences will take place with your student's T-Bird Time Teacher. Families can sign up for conferences via the personalized Sign Up Genius link that your T-Bird Time Teacher sent you via email this week. In the Sign Up Genius, you can choose between an in-person, Zoom, or phone call conference. We look forward to connecting with all of our KMS parents during November conferences. If you didn't get the email from your student's T-Bird Time teacher, please email them or call our Kulshan front office.

Mon, Oct 11: Indigenous Peoples' Day

We want to share information and resources about events happening on Monday, Oct. 11, Indigenous Peoples’ Day, a day to focus on education, building relationships and honoring the ancestors who cared for the Coast Salish land where we live, work, and play on. As a family, you may consider attending the virtual Indigenous Peoples’ Day events offered in collaboration with local Indigenous nations and peoples. Please click here for more informations about local events.

Mon, Oct 25: Healthy Youth Survey

On October 25, KMS will be participating in the Healthy Youth Survey. This student survey is voluntary and anonymous, and the results are used to identify and monitor factors that affect the health of youth in Washington. The results can indicate changes in health behaviors over time, and our schools use these results to identify important areas of need. Survey results are used to guide policy and programs that support our youth and reduce their risks. Please take some time to review this information for parents and students, then talk about the survey with your child.

Photographers Needed!

Do you enjoy taking photos? Are you often at KMS events with your camera or iphone camera? Our Yearbook Advisory Club is asking KMS parents to email photos from school sporting events and clubs. They can send them via email to Katherine Hendricks. Thank you!

Raincoat Donations?

Do you have a raincoat to donate to Kulshan? Our students use these raincoats for Plant Science, Garden Classes, and other outdoor activities. Use this SignUp Genius link or just drop off raincoats at our Main Office. Thank you for your donations!

Kulshan Food Pantry

Our Kulshan Food Pantry is back! If you are dropping off non-perishable food or healthcare items for the pantry, please deliver to our KMS front office and let them know it's for the food pantry. We greatly appreciate the ways our families come together to support our Kulshan community. If you and your family are in need of food support, please reach out to any of our Kulshan counselors: Aaron Tiger, Michelle Strobel, or Lacey Bachman.

State Testing Schedule

  • RESCHEDULED: 6th grade Science SBA (from 5th grade)
  • New date: Tuesday, October 19th (not Oct 21)
    • Only 6th grade will be on a Testing Schedule
    • 7th and 8th graders will be on a normal schedule
  • Wed, October 27 - 6th, 7th, 8th Reading SBA (from 5th, 6th, 7th)
    • Testing schedule for all grades
  • Thurs, October 28 - 6th, 7th, 8th Math SBA (from 5th, 6th, 7th)
    • Testing schedule for all grades

Tues, Nov 9: KMS PTSA Meeting

Our meetings for PTSA this year are every other month. Our next meeting is Nov 9 @ 6:30 via Zoom. You are welcome to join our PTSA as a member. It's super easy to join. You can become PTSA member here! Membership rates are low and on a sliding scale. Meetings will be held once per month (normally about 1 hour) via Zoom. You can also follow Kulshan PTSA on Instagram by clicking this link. Do you have questions about our KMS PTSA? Email us here. Thank you!

Winterizing our KMS Garden

Hello! My name is Karey Sharp (she/her or they/them)! I hope you all are doing well. The garden is looking really good thanks to volunteers and students who have cared for the garden during class. As the weather gets colder and the days become shorter there are protective measures we must take to keep the soil happy and healthy over the coming winter months. Next week I would like to host a work party to winterize the garden and do some proactive weeding to prevent the spread of weeds next spring. Let me know if you are available any evening next week (10/11-10/15) or during the day next Friday (10/15), because there is no school that day. Also feel free to head over to the garden at your own convenience, just let me know before you go so I can give you some ideas of what to work on, and let you know if there will be a class in the garden at that time.) please let me know: kulshan@commonthreadsfarm.org

Water Bottles

We encourage students to bring a water bottle from home. We have a water bottle filling station in our Commons. This helps students stay hydrated all day long and it saves them multiple trips to the drinking fountain.

Kulshan Clubs

Our Kulshan Club are going strong! For most clubs, students can just show up if they have already arranged for transportation either to school (morning club) or home (afterschool club). If students wish to participate in Building Solutions, they should check in with the main office or Mr. Hendricks before coming to the club. You can see a complete list of club times on our website here.

Future Problem Solvers Club

We are looking for more students who are interested in participating in Future Problem Solvers. Our FPS Club will meet Wednesday mornings at 8:15 with Mr. Dockins. It’s an exciting and challenging team atmosphere where you will be a member of a 4-student team figuring our real-life issues that impact our society. Kulshan has had teams who have done well in FPS competitions and it’s a great opportunity for any student who wants to push themselves in a team environment. If you are interested, please stop by the main office or contact Mr. Dockins either in person or over email.

Mask Reminder

Masks at School: Our students are doing a great job following mask guidelines at school. Middle school is a time when students can grow rapidly, and it can be a challenge to keep up all that. One thing that would be worth checking is how your students’ masks fit when they leave for school. Masks should fit snugly over the top of the nose down to underneath the chin. We have extra masks we can and do provide students when they need them as well. Thanks for supporting the safety of all kids, and we are proud of how our kids have responded to our safety protocols.

KMS Fall Sports

We have had a remarkable and extraordinary start to our Fall Sports Season! Over 250 KMS students are registred and are participating in our after school sports. Throughout the season, coaches will add information on our KMS Athletics page. Feel free to check this page or contact the coach directly. If you have any questions about sports registration or Final Forms, please email Lisa Scott, our Athletics Registrar or call 360-676-4886 x4708.

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Kulshan Instructional Spotlight

In 8th Grade math, we have a new teacher to Kulshan Middle School, Heather Kinkade, who moved to Bellingham recently and we are excited to have her here. She has taught in California, Texas, and Florida before coming to Bellingham. She has a strong track record when it comes to student achievement, and demonstrates our core values of our Kulshan community of being courageous, kind, and committed.

In her classroom, students just wrapped up their first unit on Rigid Transformation and Congruence (Geometry), and will be starting their next unit on Dilations, Similarity, and Introducing Slope. One of the strong practices that Ms. Kinkade uses alongside her teaching partner, Mr. Adams, is using pre-assessment to determine what strengths students have and what they need to brush up on before diving into the new unit. By doing this, our teachers can spend the right amount of time on the right content to be as effective with learning time as possible, especially in the context of unfinished learning from last year. Based upon this quick assessment, our students are strong with working within the coordinate plane as you can see on the pre-assessment (in photo above).

From this pre-assessment that Ms. Kinkade gave, an area for growth that we are thinking about is students’ work with fractions. During the pandemic, we focused a lot on conceptual understanding to allow for students to complete their unfinished learning in a strategic way. Building from conceptual understandings leads to learning procedures more effectively. This is where Ms. Kinkade shines. She consistently “goes conceptual” by asking kids to engage in error analysis when looking at common misconceptions that we may have about mathematics. In her class, you can observe her say “turn and talk to your neighbor about why this is a common mistake. Go!”, then students can be heard analyzing mathematical work to have a deeper understanding of a topic. We are pretty excited to have such great instruction here at Kulshan. We would love to have you ask your kids about what they are learning, what mistakes they have learned from, and how it has helped them deepen their understanding.

Written by Tyler Dockins, Instructional Coach

Support for Tribal Affiliated Students

Did you know we have over 400 students in our district with tribal affiliation? Lummi Behavioral Health can serve students with ANY tribal affiliation/status. Here is the interest link for starting MH services with Lummi Behavioral Health.

If you are interested or have questions please talk to your school counselors:

Michelle Strobel michelle.strobel@bellinghamschools.org

Lacey Bachman lacey.bachman@bellinghamschools.org

Aaron Tiger aaron.tiger@bellinghamschools.org

College Bound Application

Did you know college is free for qualifying families? Middle school is the only time that families can sign up for the College Bound Scholarship Program. The College Bound Program covers the average cost of tuition, some fees, and a small book allowance at over 65 Washington State colleges, universities and technical schools. Please fill out our district Free and Reduced Lunch Form to apply. Please let your KMS counseling team know if you have any questions.

Attendance Office Reminders

Parents: If you need to pick your student up early, please send them with a note to the front office in the morning , then they can be ready in the office when you arrive. Also, our automatic attendance messages to parents will now only go out one time per day, at 3:45 PM. (not twice per day). Let us know if you have a question about this change.

Limited Pick Up Loop @ KMS

As many of you know, our pick up loop at KMS is quite limited. We encourage KMS students to walk, bicycle, skate, or skooter to school or use their assigned bus route. Students often enjoy walking in small groups together or parents can walk with them the first couple of times. In the past, our KMS parking lot has experienced significant blockage issues and delays. Check and plan your routes for walking and biking. The district partners with the City of Bellingham to support families with school walk routes. Review how to walk or bike safely, especially during high traffic times such as school drop off and pick up.

Universal “free” meals for 2021-22

Since the first menu of the school year was included in the back-to-school mailing, the Food Services program has been impacted severely by national supply chain issues in the food industry. To keep families updated on what will be served, a two-week menu will be maintained on the school menu webpage. Reminder! All breakfast and lunch meals are provided at no cost to families in the 2021-22 school year thanks to a USDA ruling earlier this summer.

Now Hiring in BPS

We are hiring in Bellingham! If you have questions about jobs available in our schools, please visit the district website at and click on “jobs”. For assistance with questions about temporary substitute assignments, you may contact Gabrielle Roberts, Substitute Coordinator by emailing or by calling the office at (360) 676-2784 or (360) 398-5572. Questions about other job opportunities in our schools may be addressed by contacting Kara Silsbee, Employment Specialist by emailing or by calling (360) 319-4999.

Skyward Family Access

Is your contact information for your student up-to-date? You can do this online now through our Skyward Family Access program. Please take a few minutes to log into Skyward Family Access to review your contact information, mailing address, emergency contacts and to complete the Annual Health Concerns form for your student. If you need your login and password information for Skyward Family Access, please contact us. Do you need help with Skyward/ Family Access? Here are some great online resources and videos.

LGBTQ Support for Families and Youth

Dear Families - Did you know that we have many local and online supports to help you with your LGBTQ+ or questioning student? Middle school is a time of growth and many students in middle school are figuring out who they are. These resources are just a few to help along the journey. Please feel free to reach out to our KMS counselors if you have any questions or need more support Aaron Tiger (cell 360-739-3991) or Michelle Strobel. Here is a list of local and online supports.

Bellingham Food Bank Schedule

Our local food bank (1824 Ellis Street) is open Monday, Wednesday & Friday from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM. The team at Bellingham Food Bank works tirelessly to make sure they have great food to give families. Anyone can visit the food bank as often as needed, regardless of address. The food bank is proud to be of service to our families—always striving to serve them with dignity, respect, and a smile. Check out the Food Bank website to learn more about their satellite food banks, home delivery and Whatcom County Foodbanks. You can also make a donation here.

WTA Bus Fare: FREE for Youth

Did you know that youth can ride WTA busses for free? If you're not yet in high school, you can just step on and ride. You don't need a bus pass of any kind. If you're high school aged, you will need a FREE TouchPass/Umo Youth Pass. You can pick up your free TouchPass/Umo Youth Pass at WTA's Bellingham Station. Please bring proof of your age, or your current school ID. Or, you can request a card by sending an email from your school email address to buspasses@ridewta.com . Provide your first name, last name, full birth date and current grade. Students at High Schools in Bellingham can pick up their Youth Cards at school.
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Kulshan Contacts