Cordata Elementary School

February 2019 Newsletter

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Promise Kindergarten opens at Cordata

On Monday, January 28, we opened up a new classroom for some of our youngest learners at Cordata! Ms. Kelly Eret, our Promise Kindergarten teacher, along with paraeducator Rebecca Hurst, welcomed ten new learners into their classroom, and we are all enjoying helping these children learn what it means to be a Cordata Bobcat!


Promise K is in its sixth year in Bellingham Public Schools. It is a free, full-day early entrance kindergarten for children who are scheduled to enter their full year of kindergarten in the upcoming fall. The program focuses on basic academic and social skills to help qualifying students get a jump start towards success in school. We are excited to host a Promise K classroom at Cordata this year!

How much screen time is too much screen time???

Have you noticed that your child is super motivated by access to computer and video games?

Have you ever wondered what is the right amount of screen time for your kids?

Do you worry about the impact of media is on their learning or brain development?

Media should work for you and work within your family values and parenting style. When media is used thoughtfully and appropriately, media can enhance daily life. But when used inappropriately or without thought, media can displace many important activities such as face-to-face interaction, family-time, outdoor-play, exercise, unplugged downtime and sleep.

The influence of digital media on the psychological and social development of children is profound. Thus, it is important for parents to carefully monitor our children's exposure to media and to provide guidance on age-appropriate use of all media, including television, radio, music, video games and the Internet. But, what is appropriate for your children?

Cordata will host a family engagement workshop on Media Use and Young Children. Join us for an informative session for parents to learn about current research and recommendations for media exposure by age of the child, how to create a family plan for media use, tips and resources for evaluating and managing media in the home.


When?: Tuesday night February 19th, Free dinner and child-care provided 6:00-8:30 PM.

Who?/: Alison Bonner M.ed

Parenting Educator at Whatcom Community College

Student Cell Phone Policy

We've seen an increase in cell phones and other devices at Cordata this year. I'd like to take a moment to clarify our expectations around the use of personal electronic devices here at Cordata. These expectations are designed to keep our learning environments focused and positive, and to maintain safety for all of our students.


First, we strongly encourage students to leave cell phones and other devices at home. We can not be responsible for lost or damaged electronics when students bring them to school. With that said, we do understand that some families rely on these devices for communication and safety outside of school hours. If that is the case for your child, below are the guidelines that we will expect all children to follow:


  • Cell phones and other electronic devices must be left out of sight, in backpacks, and silenced throughout the school day. They are not allowed to be used in classrooms, on the playground, in the cafeteria, or in other areas of the school.
  • If there is a need for parents/guardians to contact students, or students to contact their families, this must be done through the main office.
  • If a student is using a device, or if it is audible during class time, the teacher will ask the student to place the device in a designated envelope and walk it down to the office.
  • We will hold the device in the office for safe keeping.
  • For a first offense, the child may pick up the device at the end of the school day. For subsequent offenses, we will contact parents/guardians for pick-up.


If you have any questions, please contact us in the Cordata office at 360-676-6461.

Cooking with Common Threads

A message from Margo, our wonderful garden educator:


Classes in all grades are enjoying monthly cooking lessons through March 12th. This month, our student chefs will prepare and taste Three Sisters Stew, a traditional and contemporary Native American dish made with squash, corn, beans and more. Keep a lookout for recipes coming home and visit https://commonthreadsfarm.org/recipes/ for more!

We are going to have a Garden Work Party to add compost, weed, and prune on Saturday, March 23rd. Come anytime between 1pm and 4pm to help prepare for spring gardening! As always, if you’re interested in getting involved, please contact me: margo@commonthreadsfarm.org.

Mark your calendars - UPCOMING DATES

Feb. 14 Valentines day - see below for information about Valentines celebrations

Feb. 18 - No school – President’s Day

Feb. 19 - 6:00 - 8:30 pm - Family Engagement Evening - Media Use and Young Children

Feb. 22 – Friendship Day Assembly

March 1 – PTA Family Fun Night – Crafts & Ice Cream Social

March 4 – Class Pictures

A note about Valentine celebrations

Valentine's Day can be a fun day to celebrate friendship in elementary classrooms. Your teacher will send home information about Valentine's celebrations in your child's classroom. But please be aware that we must be very cautious in distributing food, and particularly candy, to children at school. The Bellingham Good Food Promise describes our approach to sharing food in classrooms. We want to model healthy eating habits, and also ensure safety for children who have life threatening allergies or food sensitivities.


For these reasons, I strongly encourage you, if you and your child decide to distribute Valentine cards and notes, to do so without candy. Children will not be consuming Valentine candy while at school, but will take it home so that parents can help them take any necessary precautions. Thanks for your help and consideration!

Cordata PTA News

Your children brought flyers home about our PTA Pack the Paw fundraiser. Since we've had some snow days to contend with, we'll be extending our fundraiser to Feb. 15!
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Contact Cordata Elementary

There are many ways to stay connected! Check out our website, follow us on Facebook or Instagram, email or call our office. You're our partners in educating your chidlren, and we want to stay in touch!

Contact the Cordata PTA

Do you have questions about the PTA? How can you help volunteer at school and/or from home? What events are coming up? Follow/message us on Facebook, or send us an email. We look forward to connecting with you!