Viking Pride -

Friday April 30, 2021

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Hello Valhalla Families and Staff,

Congratulations on the very successful and fun Read-a-Thon! Can you believe that we raised over $13,000 and read over 30,000 minutes! WOW! Bravo! πŸ’πŸ“šπŸ‘πŸ»

Thank you all so much for your hard work and perseverance during the morning zoom and in the afternoon support sessions. Regardless if you are on campus or via zoom, afternoons are very smooth and successful with many activities. The best part has been connecting with old friends and making new ones too!

We appreciate you continuing to fill out the daily health form on the days your student is coming to Valhalla. We will email the form to you each day at 11 am.

Thank you for dropping off and picking up your students so promptly and smoothly! Please continue to follow all of the safety guidelines. We appreciate all of your support!

Thank you for keeping up all of your hard work! Please do not hesitate to reach out to me.


Theodora Pappas, Principal


Congratulations & THANK YOU on the read-a-thon!

The Valhalla Community raised $13,200! WOW! Thank you to all who participated!

From Julie McPhearson:

Hello Valhalla Vikings!

What can I say? We are ALL winners!! As a school, we raised over $13,000 and collectively we read for almost 30,000 minutes. Let that sink in for a moment: 30,000 minutes. Now that's some brain food!


Our TOP school fundraiser: Ella McDivitt in Mrs. Ramirez's 5th grade class

Our SUPER school fundraiser, coming in second: Clara Campbell in Ms. Fivey's 1st grade class

*Top fundraiser prize package includes: certificate of achievement, $10 gift certificate to the Friends Bookstore, and 2 free online music lessons at Village Music, and a Reading is my SUPERPOWER poster

Our TOP class fundraiser: Mrs. Richards' 2nd grade class

Our SUPER class fundraiser, coming in second: Ms. Robinett's 2nd grade class

*Top class fundraiser prize packages includes: certificate of achievement, $10 gift certificate to the Friends Bookstore, 3 Read-a-thon poster, bragging rights, and a class dance Zoom party or storytime with Principal Pappas

OUR TOP school reader (& our 3rd grade SUPER reader): Koudai Aono in Ms. Kaput's class

OUR TK/K SUPER reader: Yui Matsuura in Mrs. Motta's class

OUR 1st grade SUPER reader: Jazlynn Lorenz in Mrs. Rosner's class

Our 2nd grade SUPER reader: George Orlov in Ms. Robinett's class

Our 4th grade SUPER reader: Jayden Lorenz in Ms. Hanko's class

Our 5th grade SUPER reader: Mei-Ling Lee McMurray in Ms. Ramirez's class

Super Reader (those who read the most minutes regardless of funds raised) prize package includes: certificate of achievement and $5 gift certificates to the Friends Bookstore, TOP reader also received Reading is my SUPERPOWER poster

Our TOP class of SUPER readers: Ms. Robinett's 2nd grade class

Top Class Super Readers (the class that read the most minutes regardless of funds raised) prize package includes: certificate of achievement, bragging rights and an after-school Zoom movie party with Principal Pappas

All prize packages will be available for pick up next MONDAY APRIL 26 in the office.

ALL Read-a-thon participants will receive a custom-designed Valhalla Read-a-thon bookmark distributed by their teachers in the coming weeks. Winners will also be announced in the Viking Pride.

Thank you again, Viking family, for making this THE MOST EPIC SUPER Read-a-thon EVER!

Please check out our pictures below!

Thank you Riddle Family!

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Monday, 5/3 (A) or Thursday 5/5 (B) (depending on your cohort):


Surprise your teacher by bringing a note to school of why you think they are "super", what their superpower is, or draw a picture of them being a superhero! Distance learners, you can email directly or drop in the office either day!

(Please see attached template HERE for one idea if needed)

Don't forget a note for our amazing staff as well!

Tuesday, 5/4 (A) or Friday 5/5 (B) (depending on cohort):


If you would like to give your super teacher or staff something special, today is the day! Flowers from your garden, gift cards to their favorite place, favorite snack or treat!

(You can find their favorites on Konstella or here)


It's superhero day! Whether you are zooming or coming to school, please wear your favorite superhero t-shirt and be your teacher's favorite sidekick!

For our distance learners, you can participate too! Feel free to drop off a note or gift in the office and we will be sure it gets to your teacher or staff member. In addition, you can email your note directly as well!

What's their superpower? Bulletin board

Starting Monday, May 3rd, you can go to the front bulletin board to write on a star and share what superpowers our teachers and staff possess! There will be stars, writing pens (and hand sanitizer) to share!

Superpowers like: kind, funny, smart, dedicated & more!

The ideas above are all optional suggestions to participate. If you have other ideas or would like to show your appreciation in a different way, please feel free!

As we all know this year has been full of uncertainty, yet our teachers and staff showed up and were a consistent presence in our students' lives. They used all their super strength to pivot in how they taught and connected with their class. In our eyes, they truly have been our heroes this year.

So please help and join us in celebrating them this week!

Thank you!


CREAM Ice Cream Antisocial Committee Chair needed:

The VPFA is looking for someone to chair our final event of the year: our grab-and-go CREAM Ice Cream Antisocial. All proceeds will go to making more multicultural literature available for Valhalla students. The Committee Chair will be responsible for promoting the event via school channels, coordinating two-hour volunteer shifts from 12 PM to 6 PM on June 2 at Valhalla, and coordinating with CREAM. It will be an easy and delicious job. At least four people have already volunteered to help out at the event. If interested, contact VPFA Director of Fundraising Julie McPherson on Konstella or at

CREAM Fundraiser!

On Wednesday, June 2, 2021 from 12-6 we will have our Cream Fundraiser during our Chrome book drop off. You can pre-purchase ice cream sandwiches from Valhalla or purchase one at drop off.

More details to come! All proceeds will go towards Multicultural Classroom Books!

Wednesday, April 21st was Administrative Professionals Day - Thank you Ms. Melissa & Ms. Rebecca!

Drop off & pick up safety reminders:

Dear Parents,

Thank you for continuing to follow all of our safety procedures at Valhalla. Here are some reminders to review:

Please do not turn left into Valhalla's parking lot. Only school busses are allowed to turn left into the parking lot, due to safety issues such as children crossing the street. You're also cutting in front of families who have been patiently waiting in the car line to pick up their students.

Please do not turn left out of our parking lot. Again, we have children and families using our crosswalk and it can be very dangerous. Our top priority is the safety of our students and families. Please turn right ONLY out of our parking lot.

Please do not park in our staff parking lot (it is for staff only). We were a little lax over distance learning, but you'll have to now go back to parking on the street if you need to pick up your child or pick up materials.

Please do not walk through the parking lot. We have staff cars and busses moving through the parking lot and it is a big safety concern to be walking through our parking lot. Please instead use our walkways.

We thank you for your cooperation - our students' safety is our top priority!

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Please welcome Mrs. Tina Deane, our new site technician! πŸ’»

Mrs. Tina has been with MDUSD for over 13 years and we are so lucky to have her expertise to help us! Mrs. Tina has been working hard getting our Chromebooks ready for CAASPP testing! Thank you!

We had our first fire drill back at Valhalla!

On Thursday, April 22 at 2:15 pm we had our first fire drill in over a year with our Group B students. They did such a fantastic job, we had everyone out safely in 2 minutes and 45 seconds! Way to go!

Our next fire drill will be on Tuesday, May 11th at 2:15pm for our Group A students.

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End of the Year events:

Tuesday, June 1st: 9am-11am - 5th grade end of year celebration drive through (staff parking lot) For 5th grade students only. More information to come.

Wednesday, June 2nd: 9am-10am - Last zoom of the year!

12pm - 6pm End of Year Chromebook, hotspots, other material collection in Thor Hall, photo op & Cream fundraiser!

Thursday, June 3rd: 8am - 12pm - End of Year Materials Collection in Thor Hall for those unable to get their items or chromebooks to their teachers or office.

Your am class teachers will provide information on how they will receive textbooks and any other materials from you. Chromebooks will be returned to Thor Hall on June 2nd or June 3rd.

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Volunteers for End of the School Year Needed, PLEASE! πŸ™πŸ»πŸŒž

If you have some time to help us out, we would really appreciate it!

Volunteer opportunities:

Tuesday, June 1st: 9am-11am - 5th grade end of year celebration drive through. Click here to sign up for a shift to help say goodbye to our 5th graders!

Wednesday, June 2nd: 12pm - 6pm End of Year Chromebook, hotspots, other material collection in Thor Hall, photo op & Cream fundraiser! Click here to sign up for a shift to help collect materials in Thor Hall or sort materials.

Thursday, June 3rd: 8am - 12pm - End of Year Materials Collection in Thor Hall. Click here to sign up for a shift to help collect materials or sort materials.

Food and Nutrition

Changes beginning on Wednesday, April 21:


  2. Pickups are ONLY on Wednesdays.

  3. Seven days worth of meals will be given.

Please view the new flyers HERE.

*NOTE* These changes only pertain to Bus Distribution. Meal distribution out of current school kitchens remain unchanged.

Congrats to SEVERAL of our Valhalla Community Members for being nominated this year! WOW! πŸ†πŸŽ‰

Please use this link to attend the virtual MDEA Academy Awards on Thursday, May 6th from 6:00 – 8:00 PM:

Meeting number: 145 364 5434

Password: MDEA2021050

Please give a shoutout to these staff and our community members for being nominated this year for MDEA awards! Congrats everyone and good luck to our finalists! πŸ€πŸ€žπŸ»

Creative Curriculum: Connor Murray (2nd Grade)

Outstanding Parent Volunteer: Tina and Alex Khodadad* (Parents of Rayan & Tara)

Outstanding Volunteer Organization: VPFA* (Valhalla Parent Faculty Association)

Most Inspirational: Jennifer Neys (Librarian), Sarah Young (4th/5th SDC Teacher)

Outstanding Classified Employee: Ken Ruiz* (Custodian)

Outstanding Administrator: Marji Calbeck* (Previous Principal & Director of Elementary)

Theodora Pappas (Principal)

Social Justice: Cri Schine (Parent of Kaden & Kaleb)

Outstanding Collaborating Team:

CARE Team:

Alison Bartlett Drewicke (Resource), Janet French, (District Nurse) Sabrina Gibson (Speech), Gena Hanko (4th Grade), Olivia Kittredge (Psychologist), Jeanette Miklich (JFK Counselor), Sarah Young (SDC Teacher) and Theodora Pappas (Principal)

4th Grade Team:

Erika Austen, Gena Hanko, Rebecca Schnee


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Valhalla Elementary 2020-2021 CAASPP Testing Schedule, grades 3-5

Click here for the testing schedule.

Teachers are practicing CAASPP with their students until the end of April.

Please click here to read the letter to parents that was sent April 8.

Thank you families for talking to your students about the importance of doing your best and showing us what you know during CAASPP testing!

Ramadan: Monday, April 12 and ends in the evening of Wednesday, May 12

April is Arab American Heritage Month! See our board resolution here.

A short video for students describing Ramadan traditions is here.

Below is some information about Ramadan that was shared by Brooklyn Joseph.

Here is what you need to know about the holy Islamic celebration.

9 Ways to support students during Ramadan-



What is Ramadan?

What is Ramadan | Interesting Fun Facts About Ramadan | All About Ramadan and Fasting For Kids

Read Alouds

Lailah's Lunchbox: A Ramadan Story

The Gift of Ramadan (Literally Cultured Read Aloud)-

Nadia's Ramadan-


Make Ramadan Paper Lanterns-

A note from our VPFA President:

Dear Valhalla Families,

We are in the home stretch of this year, which means for VPFA, we are starting to prepare for next school year. We have nominated for all of our elected positions and will vote for our new slate at our May VPFA meeting. There are many more opportunities to help.

Do you like planning parties? Are you the king/queen of themes and costumes? We need 3-4 parents to chair our Auction which will be in March 2022. Sounds far away, but tickets will go on sale in August, so it’s important that the planning start now. The best part, if you chair the event, you choose the theme! Past events have included, Valchella, Honeymoon in Vegas and The Love Boat. (Of course, we can help come up with ideas if you’d like). This is a large event, and involves gathering donations, an online auction, a live auction, and a dinner/dance gala so we encourage several parents to step up to chair this event.

Other positions available include:

  • Director of School Services

  • Welcome Back Dinner Dance

  • Family STEAM Night

  • Family Movie Night

  • Ice Cream Social

  • Multicultural Night

  • After School Enrichment

  • All-in-One

  • Community Fair

  • Assemblies

  • Emergency Preparedness

  • Red Ribbon Week

  • Room Parent Coordinator

  • Science Fair

  • Book Fair

  • Restaurant Fundraisers

If you would like more information, please check out our webpage and click on the VPFA Manual link. Or you can email with specific questions. These are all appointed positions, so if you are interested, it’s yours!

Looking forward to the rest of this year and beyond!

Thank you,

Marni Hutchins

VPFA President

TK & K registration!

Do you have a child who was born before December 2, 2016? Time to register for Kinder!

If your child was born between 9-2-2016 to 12-2-2016, you can register for TK!

We appreciate you sharing this information!

Please check out our school webpage and look under "2021-2022 KINDER REGISTRATION" and follow the step by step directions. Click here. Thank you!

COVID Safety Protocols:

Our district COVID protocols can be found on MDUSD’s Risk Management COVID-19 page. The first step in reporting COVID concerns is to reach out to me via phone or text to facilitate the quickest response. Please also take extra precautions when preparing materials for students. Wear a mask while prepping and wash/sanitize hands both before and after touching materials. MDUSD COVID Reporting Guidelines

Contra Costa County COVID-19 Resources:

Contra Costa County COVID-19 page

COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

COVID-19 Activities Risk Chart

COVID Testing Schedule - Update with Additional Athlete Testing

The following testing schedule is in place, and can be found on our MDUSD website under "COVID-19 Response." Optional testing is available for staff, students, athletes, and their families. Pre-registration is required (info on the COVID Testing page). Since more sporting events are now scheduled, we have added testing on Thursday afternoons as a second opportunity to support our athletes. If these times do not meet the needs of a specific family, please refer to community testing options that are posted outside the office of each school site. During any time below, athletes will have first priority.


12:30 - 4 pm - Mt. Diablo High, Northgate High, Ygnacio Valley High

1 - 6 pm - College Park High, Concord High


11:30 - 5 pm - Riverview Middle


12:30 - 4 pm - Mt. Diablo High, Northgate High, Ygnacio Valley High, College Park High, Concord High

Daily Student Health Form:

All in-person hybrid students are required to submit a daily health assessment before they arrive on campus. We will email you daily at 11 am to remind you. Thank you!

Please use the link below:

Daily Student Health Form: link English

Daily Student Health Form: link Spanish.

*We have hard copies in the office available upon request.

Upcoming May Calendar

1 - Principal Appreciation Day

3-7 Teacher Appreciation Week

4 - Teacher Appreciation Day

5 - Cinco De Mayo
6 - MDEA Awards

9 - Mother's Day

11 - Fire Drill at 2:15pm

12 - Incoming Kindergarten Skills Check

14 - Pastries with Pappas

15 - Armed Forces Day

31 - Memorial Day - No School