Avoca West News

Week of November 14, 2016

The Kindness Project - Update and Details

Beginning the Monday after Thanksgiving through Friday, December 2nd, Avoca West students and staff will come together to give back to those in need in our community. Journeys - The Road Home “provides both shelter and social services to the homeless and those at risk of becoming homeless in 37 towns in north/northwest suburban Cook County.” Feel free to visit their website linked above to view their introduction video. The staff and liaisons at Journeys will make sure our boxes get into the hands of those who need them the most.

How can you help? Each class will be organizing and building one box compiled of the following items. Classroom teachers will be coordinate with students and families to fill the boxes with the items -- though it may be possible that our students and families look to donate more than one item. The more the merrier! Helping Hands (with the help of Karen Azar) will help to make sure that the kits are in order to be donated the week of December 9th.

Thanks for your help in carrying out Caleb White’s message of, “Everything big starts somewhere small!”

We will be filling each classroom’s box (copy paper size) with:

Hand warmers

ChapStick (lip balm)

Gloves (warm ones preferred -- can be gently used)

Socks (our Girl Scouts group is also doing a drive to collect these)

T-shirt - Chicago sports oriented or and undershirt

Winter hat (gently used AND CLEANED is fine)

Granola bars

Bottle of Water

Band Aids

Wet Wipes

Fleece Blanket (a small one)

Travel Pillow


Toothbrush & Toothpaste


Tissues (travel pack)


Body wash/soap

Cough drops

Bonus items - could include tarp, toilet paper, or other things that might be helpful

A kind note from the class wishing the recipient well and that we’re thinking of them

We will also have a larger box for donated coats or winter gear that families may wish to donate. Please -- NO ADDITIONAL food items because all items need to fit in the box and weight will be an issue.

Questions? Feel free to ask Mrs. Hutchison or Karen Azar (karenlenhardtazar@gmail.com).

Musings from a Fellow Parent - 5 Love Languages of Children

I recently began a book study with a fellow group of administrators and mothers. We are digging into the Five Love Languages of Children, a resource that is designed off of the original Love Languages book. Though we embarked on it to consider its impact on our work in our schools, I'm finding so much that is making me pause in my relationships with my own two kiddos.

I gave my daughter, Kyra, the 5 Love Languages quiz last night to try to get a sense of what "language" (besides pre-teen angst) she speaks and hears the loudest. After I shared the results with her (Words of Affirmation), she told me how she thought I should tell every parent about the quiz. Not only did it give her insight into what she prefers, but she recognized instantly the value it gave to me as a parent to better understand her. Needless to say, here I am typing away...because she's exactly right! How lucky to have the chance to know just how to best fill up her emotional tank so that she's ready to tackle all that the world will throw at her.

I encourage you all to take the quiz yourselves, to give it to your children, and to think how we might best build the most emotionally sound kiddos for the future. Happy parenting, my friends!

Indoor Recess -- Legos Needed

As we head into another holiday season, we are also embarking on the beginning of "Indoor Recess" season! One of the things students prefer is free-building with Legos during their indoor time. Before we spend indoor recess budget money on building blocks, I thought we'd throw the request out for parents who may have children who have outgrown their love of Legos. Perhaps you're clearing out some space for incoming gifts and we are your solution!

If you have Legos to donate, we will happily take your donations to compiling several grade-level bins of Legos. Please know that your donation will be a school-wide donation and is not guaranteed to go directly to your child's classroom. Thank you for your consideration!

Upcoming Dates to Note

11/17 - (6:00-9:00pm) Sip and Shop for Marie Murphy 8th grade students

11/18 - (6:30pm) Angry Birds Movie Night at Marie Murphy for Avoca West Students

11/23-11/25 - Thanksgiving Break - No School Staff or Students!

11/28-12/2 - The Kindness Project in action!

Check out the Avoca PTC's Updated Website

Don't forget to stop by the Avoca PTC website for updated information and dates to put on your calendar as well. There are many exciting events going on -- including our Spirit Wear sales!!

Questions? Comments?

Please feel free to reach out to ask any of our office staff for help!