Eagle Parent Updates

September 24, 2021

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Kicking Off Hispanic Heritage Month

Dear Dawes Families,

It is hard to believe that we just finished our fifth week of school. Last Friday, we kicked off Hispanic Heritage Month at Dawes and our students are loving it. For the next few weeks, our morning entry song each week will feature Spanish music from various Latinx artists and we will continue to host safe, family friendly events to deepen our learning and appreciation of the Latinx culture. Thank you to everyone who was able to join us last Friday for "Salsa in the Garden!" and this week for a special "Interactive Storytelling with Ms. Isa!" We learned how to make salsa and about the origins of peppers while also paying homage to indigenous agricultural practices. Mrs. DiFrisco led us through a demonstration afterwards on how to make salsa verde and Ms. Isa engaged students in movement, music and storytelling about the Latin culture. Tomorrow, the learning and fun continues with our first "Movie on the Lawn" ! Please join us for a special screening to watch Vivo!, a film about a music loving kinkajou who embarks on the journey of a lifetime to fulfill his destiny and deliver a love song for an old friend. Bring your picnic blankets, chairs and masks for a special evening of love and laughter. I would like to take a moment to thank members of our Diversity and Garden Committee, Tabitha Bonilla-Worsley and Samantha Mok, our PTA Co-Presidents, Natasha Hough and Nora Bondi, and our very own, Mrs. DiFrisco for their support with these events! Please note that over the course of the next few weeks, we will continue our tradition of celebrating and deepening our understanding about the identity and experiences of the Latinx people in many ways. The week of October 4th, Dawes students will also engage in lessons and activities as part of our district’s Latinx Heritage Equity Week. As you may recall, this opportunity is made possible by an amazing group of educators who participated in a summer learning project to develop age and developmentally appropriate learning experiences for students. It is our goal to continue weaving in a diverse set of stories, experiences, and identities into our daily standards-aligned learning with the goal of deepening the cultural competence for all in our learning community. As we forge ahead, please take note of some important updates and reminders below. We look forward to seeing you at more of our upcoming family friendly events!

In partnership,

Marlene Aponte (she/her/hers)


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Hispanic Heritage Month Events @ Dawes

Saturday, September 25th - Presenting Our First Movie On the Lawn!

Time: 7:00PM

Location: Grassy Area Near Annex Building

Please join us for a special screening to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. We are going to present Vivo!, a music loving kinkajou embarks on the journey of a lifetime to fulfill his destiny and deliver a love song for an old friend. Bring your picnic blankets, chairs and masks for a special evening of love and laughter.

Thursday, September 30th - Virtual Arts & Crafts With Worry Dolls Representing Guatemala

Time: 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Zoom Link: https://district65.zoom.us/j/4429803067?pwd=SlFZN1BYZ2wzMU0vdWxXYmxITHdBZz09

Meeting ID: 442 980 3067 Passcode: RISEUP

Please join us for a special arts and craft activity tied to worry dolls. Worry dolls (also called trouble dolls; in Spanish, Muñeca quitapena) are small, hand-made dolls that originate from Guatemala. According to legend, Guatemalan children tell their worries to the Worry Dolls, placing them under their pillow when they go to bed at night. By morning the dolls have gifted them with the wisdom and knowledge to eliminate their worries. Students will receive materials for the activity with instructions before the event.

Wednesday, October 6th - Celebrate Latin American Music With Pop-Up Music School

Time: 12:15 PM - 1:15 PM (reminder: students are released at 12:05 for improvement day)

Location: Grassy Area Near Annex Building

We invite all families and students to join the Pop-Up Music School to learn and appreciate the music of Latin America. Students will have an opportunity to learn about music from different countries. We will listen, dance, and sing to the music of that particular nation. We hope you can join us!

Saturday, October 16th - Our Second Movie On the Lawn!

Time: 7:00PM

Location: Grassy Area Near Annex Building

Please join us to conclude this special month dedicated to the Hispanic culture with a special screening of Book of Life, a film about a boy named Manolo who is torn between fulfilling the expectations of his family and following his heart. Once again, we invite all of our families to bring a picnic blanket, chair and mask for an evening to remember!

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Monday, September 27th, 6:30PM - 8:00PM

Join us on Monday evening to learn about what we have in store for 2021-2022 and to meet your student's educators! You will have the opportunity to learn about the following:

  • Meet New Staff Members
  • Dawes School Priorities
  • Daily Classroom Expectations & Routines
  • Grade Level Academic Learning Topics
  • Grade Level Assessments

Please note that educators will be sharing all of the evening's presentations on curriculum night with parents in the event you are not able to make it!

Zoom Link: https://district65.zoom.us/j/4429803067?pwd=SlFZN1BYZ2wzMU0vdWxXYmxITHdBZz09

Meeting ID: 442 980 3067 Passcode: RISEUP
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MAP Testing Information

Students started MAP testing this week! As you may recall, The MAP test (Measures of Academic Progress) is an adaptive achievement and growth test that is given to students in K-8 across the district. MAP assessments create a personalized assessment experience by adapting to each student's learning level—precisely measuring progress and growth for each individual student.

We complete this assessment throughout the year to measure progress towards grade level expectations. It is information we use in conjunction with classroom based measures to provided targeted instruction. Your child's teacher will communicate when your student will complete the assessment.

Last year, we delivered a presentation for parents on the assessment that was helpful. You can access it here: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1fvymvXiEnijKLQ9PpVgOTOB3qZTnWlhf-E1lT6LFKwo/edit#slide=id.p

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COVID-19 Shield Testing Update

As our district has communicated, we were hoping to have COVID Shield testing up and running on Monday, September 13 across all schools. However, SHIELD needed a bit more time to get testing schedules finalized and staff assigned. In the interim, I wanted to share some tentative logistics and updates as it relates to Dawes. Please note that this can change depending on updates we receive from the SHIELD testing team and by our district health office.

At this time, Dawes is now potentially looking to start SHIELD testing on October 4th. Below are tentative logistics for the testing process:


  • Dawes will have a designated location in our building where the SHIELD testing team will efficiently and safely test students.
  • Our tentative date for testing will occur on Thursdays. We are currently awaiting confirmation. Once our day is confirmed, we will make a schedule for testing classrooms. We learned that students cannot test 1 hour after eating.

QR Codes
  • Our health services team will have a QR code for each student with the exception of students who opted out of testing.
  • Each student testing must have their QR code in order to complete the test.
  • Students who OPTED OUT do NOT test and that list will also be shared with teachers.

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Dance-A-Thon Fundraiser Kick Off!

We are excited to bring back our dance-a-thon fundraiser and this year, our GOAL is $6,000!!!!

This special event is a tradition at Dawes and the funds raised go towards Dawes for special programs, events and resources! Students also love it because they have the chance to dance and compete for a special class prize!

This year, the dance-a-thon will take place outdoors on the morning of October 6th (our half day) and the schedule will be as follows:

    • KG & 1ST: 10:00AM - 10:30AM
    • 2ND & 3RD: 10:45AM - 11:15AM
    • 4TH & 5TH: 11:30AM - 12:00 PM

The class that raises the most funds will have a special movie day! Please use this link to help us raise funds! https://dawes.memberhub.gives/dance2122/Campaign/Details

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Keeping Our Community Safe

Keeping everyone safe and healthy remains our greatest priority at Dawes and we need your cooperation to ensure this happens. Please remember to do the following each day or when joining us for special events:

  • Adults and children must wear a mask and please ensure it is the right size for your child
  • Adults and children must remain 3 to 6 feet apart
  • School playgrounds are reserved for students during the school day and must be cleared from visitors during school hours
  • If your child has any COVID symptoms, please keep them at home and be sure to report their absence with our nurse, Ms. Siavelis
  • Please work with us to limit the frequency at which special lunch is dropped off or delivered for your child - all lunch supervisors are outdoors or with children and this disrupts our routines and procedures. We strongly recommend having your child bring a packed lunch as much as possible to ensure they have time to eat and our supervisors are present for students.