Alpenglow School Newsletter
We acknowledge that our school is on the traditional lands of the Dena'ina People of Upper Cook Inlet. For thousands of years, the Dena'ina People have continued to be the stewards of this land. ASD is committed to diversity and inclusion, and it is with honor and respect that we recognize all Indigenous people who live and learn in our community.
From the Principal
Dear Alpenglow Families,
It is time to celebrate our students and staff's hard work to ensure our daily routines and procedures are internalized. This creates a positive and supportive learning environment for all students. We aim to develop all our students into passionate, confident, and lifelong learners. I hope you can see the growth happening in your child.
This edition of our Family Newsletter contains essential information about parent-teacher conferences, safety drills, and winter preparation.
Parent-teacher conferences are on Wednesday, October 25th, and Thursday, October 26th. On conference days, students are released from school at 12:30 p.m. There is no school on Friday, October 27th.
The ultimate goal for parents and teachers should be to get a well-rounded understanding of what is happening with the child in their daily lives. For parents, it gives insight into how the day goes for their child while they are in school - academically and socially. For teachers, it is similar; they gain insight into how things are at home. A healthy partnership with your child’s teacher can make all the difference in their school experience.
The Conference Scheduler will be available from Tuesday, October 10, 2023, through Tuesday, October 24, 2023. Please visit the online scheduler at https://www.asdk12.org/conferences to access the Conference Scheduler. Early Scheduling allows you to secure conference times that work best for your family.
Safety is Our Top Priority
I want to explain the practices and protocols we have in place to keep everyone safe and prepared in an emergency. We conduct three safety drills: an evacuation drill, an earthquake drill, and either a lockdown or stay-put drill.
An evacuation drill is conducted once a month. An alarm will sound during this drill, and students, staff, and visitors will evacuate the building and meet in a central location. We have a primary route and a secondary route. We inform the fire department and the alarm security company of this. A team of staff checks the building. Teachers take emergency backpacks with supplies and a current class roster for these drills. There are procedures for locating students who may not be with their homeroom class when the evacuation occurs (i.e., visiting the nurse or in the restroom).
An earthquake drill is conducted once per semester. For this drill, an announcement is made in which students and staff duck, cover, and hold either under tables or against walls. In a real earthquake, students and staff will know what to do. Again, a team of staff checks each classroom.
A lockdown or stay-put drill is conducted once per semester. An announcement is made for these drills, and the classroom and exterior doors are locked. The stay-put indicates a concern in the community but not in the building. Learning continues in the classroom, but hallway passing is limited and only under adult supervision. The lockdown indicates a building security concern. The children and the teacher are out of sight of all windows and doors. No one moves until the all-clear is announced. A staff team checks the building and all rooms for both drills.
An A.L.I.C.E. drill is conducted three times a year. In this drill, an announcement is made before the drill takes place. We completed our first A.L.I.C.E. drill on Monday, September 25, 2023. Everyone evacuated the building and walked to our primary rally point, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints parking lot on Driftwood Bay Drive. This is where parents would pick up their students if we cannot return to the building. Future drills are scenario-based and occur in the building. As we prepare to practice, more information will be sent home.
In a catastrophic disaster, we have an emergency plan in place. The plan is
updated each August, and staff are trained. We hold a monthly safety committee meeting and welcome parent input. Practice develops automaticity. This is why we practice these safety drills continually.
At the conclusion of the morning announcements daily, I remind students to Be Safe, Respectful and Kind, Be Responsible, and Be Ready. I also spent some time in each classroom reviewing our school-wide expectations. These four guiding principles and the Elementary Student Handbook represent the framework governing our school’s positive behavior expectations. We are a caring learning community that needs each person to take an active role in establishing and maintaining a positive school climate. Please help us reinforce our Four ‘Bs’ and the guidance in the Elementary Student Handbook at Alpenglow Elementary School by reviewing both with your student.
Be Safe is our number one priority. Being safe means we are following classroom, school, and district rules. We will not bully; we will help others who are bullied; we will include others who are easily left out; when we know someone is being bullied, we will tell an adult at school and an adult at home.
Be Respectful and Kind means we must be very careful with each other and very intentional about how we speak and act toward others and ourselves. Treating others as you would want them to treat you is key. We honor each person’s unique experiences and gifts. We are in many ways alike, but we also celebrate and treasure our differences. We, as adults, are the role model of respect and kindness.
Re Responsible means acting appropriately without guidance or supervision. Students don’t rely on adults to remind them when they’re supposed to be somewhere, what they’re supposed to bring, or how to behave. You take responsibility. Being responsible means answering for your actions. This means not making excuses or blaming others for what you do.
Be Ready means coming to school ready to learn and make good choices.
The weather is getting cooler, and it is time to start our preparation for winter’s arrival. As you winterize your home, car, and garden to handle the winter weather, don’t forget to dig out those winter clothes for your child to wear on their way to and from school and during recess.
Please ensure your child comes to school prepared to spend 20 minutes outdoors. By ASD policy, we have outdoor recess unless the wind chill is below -10 degrees Fahrenheit.
Exposure to cold weather can lead to tissue damage. The best prevention is wearing appropriate, well-fitting clothing (hat, jacket, gloves, snow pants, and boots), plus a face mask or scarf for especially sensitive skin.
Join the Team
Would you like to work at Alpenglow? We need you! We need Noon Supervisors to supervise and assist students during lunch and recess to ensure student safety. The hours are Monday – Friday from 10:45 to 1:15. The application is HERE.
We are also in great need of Substitute Teachers. Follow this LINK for more details and qualifications.
Please contact Mrs. Demetree-Trombley if you have any questions or plan to apply.
Winter choir for 4th-6th grade has started! We meet in the music room on Thursdays from 3:40-4:30 until the end of December. We will have four performances in December; the Chugiak/Eagle River Tree Lighting Ceremony, Alpenglow Choir Holiday Tour and an afternoon and evening Alpenglow Choir Winter Concert.
If you did not get a chance to participate in choir this semester, there will be another chance in January! I will send out the permission slips for the spring choir after the winter break. Participation in the winter choir does not automatically place you in the spring choir. You must turn in another permission slip after the winter break.
Thank you to all the choir families who donated snacks! We could still use some more. Please bring snacks for 45 students to the music room if you would like to donate. Thank you!
In the art room, Mrs. Upicksoun's 5th grade students worked on tessellations.
International Art Contest for Alpenglow students (ages 11,12, or 13 as of November 15, 2023)
The International Lion’s Club 2023-2024
Theme: Dare to Dream
"To a young person, a dream isn’t just a wish, hope or desire — it’s a path, a goal, an ambition. But achieving that dream takes hard work. So this year, we’re asking young people to show how they’ll turn their dream of a peaceful world into reality.”
Alpenglow and Homestead students ages 11, 12 or 13 as of November 15, 2023 are eligible to participate in the International Lion’s Club Peace Poster Contest through Mrs. Upicksoun. Eligible birth dates are November 16, 2009 through November 15, 2012.
- Please write your name on the back.
- No laminating.
- No bent corners or creases.
- No letters, words, or numbers on the front.
- No 3-D.
- Size: no smaller than 13 in. X 20 in. and no larger than 20 in. x 24 in.
(Before beginning on the poster, please share and discuss plans of design with Mrs. Upicksoun.)
The Lion's Club in Eagle River is sponsoring Homestead and Alpenglow. The contest is international. The 1st place winners advanced to the next level of judging. 1st place is awarded $50. 2nd place is awarded $25. Please complete a media release form.
Posters are due October 15 to Mrs. Upicksoun.
Dear Alpenglow Families,
This past month, the main SEL (social emotional learning) focus for all classrooms when I visited was on peaceful conflict resolution using either Kelso’s Choices (K-3rd) or Choose 2 & Defuse (4-6th). These programs are used in schools nationwide and empower students to handle their own small social problems. Big problems are always referred to an adult. We talked about how small problems have big feelings but can still be handled by them. There is always adult support available if their attempts are not successful. In October, we will look more carefully at the various choices.
I am pleased to announce the school-wide Paw Power program which will begin the first week in October! Staff members will give students a written notice (a Paw Power note) when they observe them being kind, honest, fair, responsible or friendly. The beauty of the program is that we can individually recognize those students who quietly show these qualities but may not always get acknowledged as well as those who show improvement from past choices. Paw Power students will immediately get to choose a sticker as well as place their name on a pocket chart on a bulletin board in the hall. Once we fill the 100 spots, there will be a celebration with those students. Then, we will begin again! The PTA is partnering with us to offer this wonderful program that highlights our students in such a positive way. We’re excited to begin!
Finally, Dads, Dudes & Daughters will have its first gathering on Tuesday, October 17, 7:45-8:45 am, in the MPR! This event will happen several times throughout the school year and is supported enthusiastically by our PTA. This is our early morning breakfast meeting for dads and their students (K-6th) which has been so successful for several years. If you’re a single parent or dad is deployed, etc., please join us! We offer breakfast (including Jitters coffee) and a program designed to help dads and kids engage with one another. Please join us to begin your day with a smile! (We will have reminders on FB, both Alpenglow and Alpenglow PTA.) Please email me with any questions.
As always, I am available to visit with you about your student. If you have concerns you feel I can help with, I would welcome your thoughts: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your school counselor,
Jane Barber, M Ed
Alpenglow days: Mon, Tues: all day; Fri, after 12:30.
Dear Alpenglow Families,
We will be conducting our required annual screenings (distance vision, hearing, height, weight) for the following classes on the dates below. We are required to screen all grades except for 4th and 6th. All grades will be photo-screened on October 3rd. If your child wears glasses, please make sure that your child brings their glasses to school so we can screen them properly.
Thank you so much,
- Tuesday, September 25th – Petrie
- Thursday, September 28th- Halfpenny
- Monday, October 2nd- Photo-screening
- Tuesday, October 3rd- Lawson
- Thursday, October 5th- Sandoval
- Tuesday, October 10th- Neff
- Thursday, October 12th- Trembath
- Tuesday, October 17th Smerekanich
- Thursday, October 19th- Williams
Battle of the Books
Girl Scout Discovery Night
Dates to Remember
- 2 - PTA Meeting @ 4:00 - 5:00
- 2 - Battle of the Books Begins @ 3:30 - 4:00
- 6 - Popcorn Friday
- 9 - No School - Indigenous People Day
12 Girls Scouts Night @ 5:00 - 6:00 pm
17 Dads, Dudes, and Daughters @ 7:45 am
- 19 - Great Alaska Shake-out @ 10:19 am
- 20 - No School - Teacher Work Day - End 1st Quarter
- 23–26 - Scholastic Book Fair
- 25 - Parent/Teacher Conferences – Early Release
- 26 - Parent/Teacher Conferences – Early Release
- 27 - No School - Professional Development Day
- 3 - Popcorn Friday
- 5 - Daylight Savings Time Ends
- 6 - PTA Meeting @ 4:00 - 5:00 pm
- 10 - Veteran’s Day - No School
- 23 - Thanksgiving Day - No School
- 24 - No School