The Franklin Academy

Weekly Update Newsletter December 31 - January 7

Monday, January 3rd

  • Classes Resume
  • Port of Subs Lunch for those who pre-ordered
  • Boy's Basketball Practice 3:15 Markell Hall

Tuesday, January 4th

  • No Used Uniform Sales
  • NO PALS Meeting
  • Pizza Lunch for those who pre-ordered
  • Boy's Basketball Practice 3:15 Markell Hall

Wednesday, January 5th

  • House Color Day
  • Middle School Electives Schedule
  • Auction Volunteer Meeting - Markell Hall Chapel 8:15-9:15
  • Port of Subs Lunch for those who pre-ordered
  • Middle School Boy's Basketball Games at Assumption 4:00 C Team and 5:15 8th Grade Team

Thursday, January 6th

  • Pizza Lunch for those who pre-ordered
  • Boy's Basketball Practice 3:15 Markell Hall

Friday, January 7th

  • Auction Donations Accepted at Drop Off - Fine Wine Friday
  • Port of Subs Lunch for those who pre-ordered
  • Boy's Basketball Practice 3:15 Markell Hall

Saturday, January 8th

  • PALS Event - Back to School Movie Day @ Barkley Regal Theater 2:00 – 4:00pm

Upcoming Events

  • No Classes - Faculty In-Service - Friday, January 14th

  • School Closed - MLK Day Monday, January 17th

  • PALS Event - Family Ice Skating @ Bellingham Sportsplex Monday, January 17th 12:45 – 2:45pm

  • Free Dress - January 28th

  • Annual Auction - In Person January 29th 5:00 Bellwether Hotel
  • Girl's Volleyball Season Begins - January 31st
  • Board Meeting -Tuesday, February 15th4:00 – 6:00pm

  • School Closed - Mid Winter Break/President's Day - February 18th - 21st

  • STEM Fair - Wednesday, March 30th
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Volunteer for the STEM Fair!

Dear Franklin Families and Scientists,

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we will not be hosting the Whatcom County Science and Engineering Fair, but we will be hosting a STEM Fair day on Wednesday, March 30th, with an in-school, competitive exhibition science fair. All students in grades 5-8 are required to participate in the fair. 5th grade students will present their team engineering design project they have been working on in class, and 6-8 grade students will present their individual projects they have been working on at home. All Middle School projects will be evaluated by volunteer judges on this day. Students in 3rd grade will complete a project in class. If K-2, and 4th grade students wish to complete their own projects, they will need to be done outside of school. All K-4 students will also have the opportunity to present their projects on this day.

More details about this event will be sent out soon. Right now, we are in search of vaccinated volunteer judges and guest speakers to help make this day a success! Volunteering to judge is a rewarding and uplifting experience that is best seen when a participant is presenting his/her science project and realizing someone understands and cares about their efforts. Anyone who has a desire to promote the advancement of the sciences and science education can be a judge. Judges will be expected to evaluate projects in an impartial manner while applying the judging guidelines and providing positive feedback to the student.

We are also looking for guest speakers! If you are working in science, technology, engineering, or math, and are interested in sharing what you do with Middle School students, you would make a great guest speaker! Click here for more details.

The time commitment for volunteering as a judge or guest speaker is approximately 5 hours. If you would like to volunteer, please fill out the sign-up form by March 1st. If you have questions about volunteering, contact Bre Harris at We look forward to involving you in this day!


Ms. Harris

Middle School Science Teacher

The Franklin Academy

(360) 733-1750

STEM Fair Guest Speaker at The Franklin Academy

Do you work in Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math? Are you interested in sharing what you do with Middle School students? Join us as a guest speaker on January 19th, for our STEM fair day!

As a guest speaker, you will be asked to give 30 minute presentations that includes the following:

  • A brief history/background of yourself that led to your current career or job

  • Description and responsibilities of your career/occupation

  • Education/training required – Please emphasize the importance of life-long learning, ie. communication skills, hand-eye coordination, etc.

  • Positive and negative aspects of your career/occupation

  • Extracurricular activities you took in school and how they have helped you

  • Anything else that is fun or interesting to share

The presentation should be around 20 minutes and allow for 10 minutes of Q & A. Remember that middle school students respond well to hands-on, interactive, show-and-tell type information and presentations. Show them equipment you use, safety gear you wear, and examples of problems you try to solve.

Q & A Questions you might get from students:

  • What are the major duties/responsibilities of your job?

  • What character traits/work habits do you or your employer expect an employee to have?

  • What training/education is required for this job?

  • What types of demand (physical, mental, emotional) or hazards, if any, are involved in your job?

  • What specific types of tools, equipment, and/or technology do you use on a regular basis?

  • What led you to this job/career?

  • If you have/had a role model or mentor, please tell me about them.

  • What do you like most about your job? The least?

  • What courses in middle/high school would help a student prepare for your job/career?

  • What extracurricular activities, volunteer work, and/or part-time job might help someone prepare for your job?

  • What changes, positive and/or negative, have taken place in your job/career recently or since you started?

  • What do you think your job/career will be like in ten years?

  • What advice would you give a student who is considering your type of job/career?

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Mrs. Pickerill's Pre-Kindergarten Class Update

We had a great time celebrating and enjoying all of the fun and festive events last week at school. The children were able to make gifts for their family, and they are so excited for you to open them. On Wednesday, we made holiday trees out of ice cream cones and green frosting. The children also enjoyed adding different candy ornaments to their trees.

On Friday, we watched a holiday movie called Stick Man with our Pre-K and Early K friends. We also decorated sugar cookies together in class. Thanks again for helping with the supplies for our party. The children enjoyed everything and we had a fun-filled week!

Mrs. Rail's Kindergarten Update

This week was sooo much fun! We did Christmas themed everything from hot cocoa math (addition AND subtraction!) to color by sight word, Christmas words handwriting practice, and plenty of Christmas stories. We even dressed up festively every day this week! We also did plenty of Christmas crafts. I hope you all enjoy your hand made gifts.

Today we partied pretty hard! We decorated cookies, drank hot chocolate, watched The Grinch (1966 version), saw some snow falling, had a dance party, read Jingle Bells, engineered the tallest Christmas tree, made reindeer antlers, and even had PE. Phew!

We have officially made it to Christmas Break! Wahoo! I wish all of your families a very Merry Christmas, a wonderfully restful break, and a Happy New Year!

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All tables are sold! BUT, you can get on the waiting list!

We are excited to announce that all tables have been filled for the Gala!

Thank you to all our generous sponsors for your support!

If you were hoping to attend and missed getting a table, we would welcome putting you on our waiting list. As we all know, plans change and often there are spaces that need to be filled, so please use the email link below and request to be placed on the waiting list.

Questions Email Us By Clicking the Link Below:

Thank you to a few of our Bronze Level Sponsors of this year’s Gala & Auction

- Gabrielle Balolia with RE/MAX Whatcom County. Visit

for more information.

- Brandi Coplen with Windermere Real Estate. Visit

for more information.

- Em's Herbals. Visit

for more information.

- Kyle H. Martin with The Muljat Group. Visit

for more information.

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Mrs. Owen's Early Kindergarten Class Update

We have been having a very festive week filled with all kinds of Christmas fun! We made a little video of some Christmas songs that we have been practicing. We did our best to keep this a surprise for you. The children sang their hearts out and put on a wonderful/funny performance!

Here's what else we were up to this week:

-Celebrated Hailey's and Dafni's 5th Birthdays! Thank you to both families for the yummy cupcakes and awesome party bags!

-Letter Cc, how it looks, writes, sounds, and signs

-Santa’s Spin and Cover Numbers

-Gift Stack STEM Challenge. We used steppers as sleighs and building blocks as gifts and pretended to be elves carefully stacking gifts onto Santa's sleigh. The children quickly learned that in order to move their sleigh they had to stack the gifts lower

-Candy Cane Dissolve observational science experiment. In about 30 minutes the candy canes dissolved in water, vinegar, and soda. Candy canes do not dissolve in oil.

-We had a lot of fun creating/making our elf hats and textured wreaths

-We wrapped presents and made our very own to and from labels

-Today we decorated/painted Christmas cookies and then ran all the sugar off out at recess! Thank you to Ezra and family for these sweet treats!

-We enjoyed reading Stick Man by Julia Donaldson and even got to watch the short film.

-The light snow today brought such joy and warmth to our hearts, as we all have been wishing for snow on Christmas :)

Mrs. Ho's 3 Year Old Preschool Class Plays Pin the Nose on Olaf!

Mrs. Mellos' 2.5 Year Old Preschool Class!

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Mrs. Killian and Ms. TeVelde's Pre-Kindergarten Class Update

It was our final week before Christmas break, and the preschoolers are very excited. We began our week by recording our Christmas songs.

As a class we enjoyed many fun dress up days this week. Here is a picture from Wednesday.

In class we celebrated by having a party on Friday.


On Tuesday we created sequence trees. The preschoolers enjoyed comparing the various sizes of the strips of paper. We measured each strip, and noticed that they made a pattern. When they were done they had the opportunity to decorate the paper.

We enjoyed learning about patterns on candy canes on Wednesday. Each preschooler was given a candy cane with various patterns. They then colored and clapped each pattern.

Our task on Thursday was to create a tree using cups. The preschoolers needed to count out a specific number in order to create their tree.


We continued learning about light this week. On Monday we learned that light either reflects or refracts. The preschoolers looked at two arrows of similar size. One was observed through a glass of water and the other with no water. The preschoolers loved how the water made the arrows look bigger.


This week we took a break from our letter of the week and worked on learning to write numbers. This is a skill all of our preschoolers are working on mastering. Our writing curriculum, Handwriting Without Tears, has a mini unit on writing numbers.

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If you shop at, this is a great opportunity to raise money for Franklin Academy. Sign up at Amazon Smile and 0.5% of your purchase price will go towards the FA Annual Fund. Here’s how:

1. Go to Amazon Smile

2. In the “pick your own charitable organization” box type in Franklin Preschool

3. Click on the Bellingham Franklin Academy (may still be listed under St. Paul’s Episcopal School through the summer)

4. Very Important! Please make sure whenever you shop on Amazon you go to the Amazon Smile webpage. If you shop on we won’t receive the donation.

The Franklin Academy

A supportive community with STEM focused education in a safe, small class environment for all grades.

The Franklin Academy Points of Contact

Gretchen Bucsko, Head of School,

Melanie Hurley, Associate Head of School,

Dawn Regier, Administrative Assistant Markell Hall,

Rachel Lee, Administrative Assistant Robin Hall,

Natalie Bennett, Admissions Director,

PALS (Parents Actively Lending Support)

After School Care Supervisor Violet Lord