Berkeley Lake Elementary

"Bear Essentials" Weekly e-Newsletter, September 13, 2019

Principal's Message

Dear Parents,

We kicked off our Georgia Breathes project this week after practicing Mindful Moments each morning for the first weeks of school. This is our second year of working with Georgia Breathes to teach our children a variety of yoga-style poses and breathing exercises to encourage mindfulness and stress management. Our Peer Mediators filmed videos of the various poses that we will show on the morning announcements for 40 days. Ask your child to share their favorite with you!

If you are unfamiliar with the parent portal, eClass for students, or the site, My Payments Plus, I strongly encourage you to attend the parent technology workshop written about below. Although the workshop will be held at Duluth High School, ALL parents in the cluster are invited to attend. Our parent liaison, Sandra Orci, will be there to help train and support our BLES parents.

We have another parent workshop next Thursday, September 26th, on two technology-related topics. Come learn some tips for helping your children safely use technology and find out what technology resources are available to your child through our school's Title 1 funding and our school system. The workshop will begin at 6:00 PM.

I also hope you will mark your calendars to join us on Saturday, September 28th to walk with us in the Duluth Fall Festival Parade! Mr. Matt Green, our 2019 Teacher of the Year, and I will lead our group and we'd love for you to join us!

I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Your Principal and Partner,

Dr. Pendleton

Parent Technology Workshop

Do you want to know how to navigate thru the parent portal?

Do you want to make payments to the school but don’t have time to go to BLES?

Do you want to help your kids navigate into my eClass?

Do you need to create an email but you don’t know how to use it?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, then you will want to attend the workshop shown in the image below! This workshop has been designed specifically for our parents and it will be a hands on experience, so you can feel comfortable when using all these tools.

Please see the flyer image below to have more information:

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Parent Advisory Committee Meeting

The Office of Federal Programs has announced the next Parent Advisory Committee (PAC) meeting. This is an opportunity for parents to learn about the different federal programs offered in Gwinnett County Public Schools and to provide their input on each. This meeting will take place on October 3 from 5:30-7:30 PM and will be held at Rhodes Jordan Park's Community Room. Childcare will be provided and we will have Spanish, Vietnamese, Korean, and Chinese interpreters present.
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National Arts in Education Week

This past week was National Arts in Education Week. This week, the field of arts education joins together in communities across the country to tell the story of the impact of the transformative power of the arts in education. We would like to thank Lori VanBuskirk, Art Teacher, and Matthew Green, Music Teacher, for all they do for the students here at Berkeley Lake Elementary School.

PTO News

Charleston Wrap Sale Kick-Off

Our Charleston Wrap Fundraiser continues. Please be reminded that all orders are due back to school by Friday, September 20. Daily coupons can be returned to the collection box in the main hallway (in front of the PTO bulletin board) for prizes at any time. If you have any questions, contact Emily Shih at

Next PTO Spirit Night

Our next spirit night will be Wednesday, Sept. 18, at the California Pizza Kitchen at the Forum. Let’s show up in our proudest BLES purple and have a “purple out” at CPK! (please note the date for this event has been changed from the original date of Mon. Sept. 16th)

Click here and print the coupon to take with you to CPK.

Field Days

Field Days will be October 2, 3 and 4 this year. Please click here to volunteer. It looks like the first graders are filling up their spots the fastest! What grade level can beat them and have the most volunteers?

Turkey Trot:

Save the date: Our annual BLES Turkey Trot and Pancake Breakfast is Nov. 9. We need volunteers to keep this event going. It’s a great community tradition. Know a company that would like to sponsor? Email

Flash Sale:

Did you know that there was a flash sale going on? Come by our PTO table next time you are a school event to check out the massive savings on our “vintage” spirit wear. For our brand-new look, visit our website to order spirit wear anytime!

Yearbook reminder:

Yearbooks will be discounted through the end of September. See our site for ordering instructions. Thanks to committee chair, Pam Block, and Ellissa Friedman for getting this new online and customizable yearbook started for us.

If you’d like information about all things PTO, visit our site or see us at most school events. Thanks for supporting our school!

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Important Testing Dates Coming Up

IOWA testing for students in grades 2nd & 5th will be September 23 - 27. Please try to schedule appointments for children in these grade levels outside of those date ranges. Thank you!

Field Days

Just a friendly reminder that Tuesday, September 17th will be the last day for ordering your Field Day T-Shirts. Please use MyPaymentsPlus or hand in a hard copy of the order form with cash/check to your teacher by Tuesday.

This year's Field Days will be:

Wednesday, October 2nd: Kindergarten and 1st grades

Thursday, October 3rd: 2nd and 3rd grades

Friday, October 4th: 4th and 5th Grades

We will need adult volunteers to help out, so please click here to sign up.

Art Club (4th and 5th Grade Students Only)

The club roster was posted today, and the first meeting will be held next Wednesday, September 18th at 7:15.

Saturday Intervention Class

The last Saturday Intervention class for this session will be held tomorrow, Saturday, Sept. 14th. Students should arrive at 8:45 and class will begin promptly at 9:00. If you have any questions about it, please contact Sophia Barton.

Thank You to the Following Parents for Volunteering in the Lunchroom this Week:

Monique Somervell

Nadia Claxton

Ninoska Gonzalez

Positive Behavior Focus for this Week:

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A Look Ahead...

Saturday, September 14

PTO Charleston Wrap Fall Fundraiser

9:00am Last Saturday Intervention class - Students should arrive at 8:45

9:30am Duluth Cluster Parent Technology Learning Opportunity - Duluth High School but all parents, including BLES parents invited and encouraged to attend

Monday, September 16

PTO Charleston Wrap Fall Fundraiser

7:45am K-Kids Mtg (Media Center)

2:45pm Orchestra Club

3:00pm Chess club - Media Center

Tuesday, September 17

PTO Charleston Wrap Fall Fundraiser

9:00am Advanced English Class

3:00pm Green Team

3:15pm Drama Club in room 3.124

Wednesday, September 18

PTO Charleston Wrap Fall Fundraiser

7:15am Art Club

9:00am Beginner English Class

3:00pm Soccer Club

5:00pm PTO Spirit Night- California Pizza Kitchen

Thursday, September 19

PTO Charleston Wrap Fall Fundraiser

7:00am Chorus Club Semester 1

3:00pm Robotics Club

3:15pm Club Invention

Friday, September 20

PTO Charleston Wrap Fall Fundraiser - Last Day to submit paper order forms

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Do You Have a Parent Portal Account?

You may have heard about Gwinnett's Parent Portal. The Parent Portal is a website that will allow you to log in and see your child's information, such as attendance, grades, standardized test scores, etc.

If you need to register with the portal, please print and complete this registration form and turn it in to the main office. Along with the completed form, you are required to show a photo I.D. for verification.

We Have a School Store

Berkeley Lake is proud to have our school store open daily before school starts! It is run by highly qualified 5th grade students. Each morning the school store volunteers are in charge of setting up the store, selling items, closing the store, and counting and depositing the money collected. They do all of this before 8:15 in the morning! Our store features school supplies and snacks. All profits go to our Care Team, which helps families in economic need, and the BLES School Counseling Department.

Berkeley Lake Recycles

Berkeley Lake recycles aluminum cans and old clothes and shoes (in any condition) in the two bins in the upper parking lot. The Green Team receives 10¢ per pound of donations, which helps pay the fee for the weekly paper and cardboard pick-up. The aluminum cans are recycled at Progressive Recycling on Simpson Circle. Please support our Green Team by recycling these items here at Berkeley Lake. Thank you!

Remember to Save Those Box Tops!

One easy way to support your school is through the PTO Box Tops for Education collection. Send in Box Tops from products you purchase. To help with counting, you can download this Box Tops Collection Sheet.

Make sure to put your Box Tops on the sheet or in a bag with your name and teacher on it. Drop it into the wooden box in the main hallway near the water fountain. Doing this automatically enters you into a contest.

Each month, we’ll hold a random drawing of all students who submit Box Tops. Winners will be announced on the morning announcements at the end of each month. The prize? A coupon for a free ice cream or an item from the student store. This fundraiser has helped us earn hundreds of dollars for our school!

We Are On Twitter

Follow our school on Twitter @BerkeleyLakeES

Our Parent Center

The Berkeley Lake Parent Center is open each day from 7:30-3:30. The Parent Center is located across from the front office. For Parent Center support please call Ms. Sandra Orci, Parent Liaison, at 678-291-4232.

Our Mission

To provide learning experiences in a secure and stimulating environment where every child can develop to his/her fullest potential academically, socially, and emotionally.

Our Vision

BLES is a positive safe, nurturing environment that fosters respect among all students, teachers, parents and community members, while forwarding world-class achievement that successfully maximizes each student's individual potential through engaging instruction.

Contact Us:

Berkeley Lake Elementary

4300 S. Berkeley Lake Rd.

Duluth, Georgia 30096

P: (770)446-0947

F: (770)582-7514

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