Susitna Elementary News
October 5, 2016
Please take a few minutes to read over all the exciting things happening at Susitna Elementary School. The newsletter is sent directly to your email address(es) twice a month, so please make sure to keep the front office current on your preferred email contacts. Paper copies are available in the front office, or you can go to our school’s website to read this issue, or any others in the archive library.
It’s almost time for our Fall Parent-Teacher Conferences (Oct. 26 – 27). This year elementary schools are using the same online scheduling application our middle schools use. You will receive a copy of the Parent Aid Sheet later this week and can schedule your conference time(s). To ensure we see ALL of our student’s families at conferences, teachers will begin calling parents who have not scheduled conferences after Monday, Oct. 17th. If you have any questions concerning conferences, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher or the front office for help at 742-1400.
A reminder that ASD does not celebrate Halloween or allow costumes at school. This includes masks and hand toys. It is a safety issue and a distraction issue that we would like everyone to continue learning and then enjoy the evening with your family to celebrate the holiday. The days are getting darker and colder so please remember these safety in the dark suggestions.
- Wear light colored clothes
- Use reflectors on jackets or costumes for visibility so drivers can see the children
- Walk on sidewalks and not in the center of the road
- Walk in groups
We want everyone to have a safe and fun holiday.
As always, if you have any questions or concerns, you can call, email, or drop by to talk with me.
Meet our Assistant Principal Mai Saevang
Hello and Nyob Zoo,
My name is Mai Saevang. I lead a busy life as we all do, as a wife and mother to my children. I am thrilled to be the Assistant Principal at Susitna Elementary School this year. I share time between Susitna and Williwaw Elementary School. Let me tell you a bit about myself. I grew up with six brothers and three sisters. I was born in the small country Laos. My family were refugees that moved to Thailand and then on to the United States, because my father was an American Secret Guerrilla soldier in the Vietnam War.
I started second grade in Las Vegas, Nevada, the state where my family first called home. Even though I could not speak English and was only in second grade, I already knew then, that I wanted to be a teacher. I started my career as an English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher Assistant (TA) after graduating from high school. For 5 years, I taught all of the ESL students in the district, covering grades K-12. I decided to attend part-time college while working full-time as an ESL TA. Finishing my degree was taking too long, so I quit my job and attended school full-time.
I am proud to be the first generation and the first college graduate in my family. Outside of my school time, I like to spend time with my husband, children and to read. I earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in education with an emphasis in mathematics from Concordia University of St Paul, Minnesota and a Master’s Degree in Education Administration/Director of Curriculum and Instruction. I also have a Bilingual Bicultural and an ESL Certifications from Edgewood College.
I have seven years of teaching experience, two years as an assistant principal, and five years as a school principal before coming to Susitna as an assistant principal. I am excited and look forward to work with Susitna’s wonderful families, students and caring staff. It is my commitment to do whatever it takes to prepare all of Susitna’s students for success in college, career and become great leaders of tomorrow.
Parent Teacher Conferences
Parents now have the ability to schedule conference times online. The Conference Scheduler will be available soon. We will send a flyer home when it is ready to start scheduling with your teacher. Scheduling early offers you the opportunity to secure conference times that work best for your family. Please visit the online scheduler at: www.asdk12.org/parents
If you are unable to use the online Conference Scheduler, please contact your student's teacher via phone or email. Please call the front office at 742-1400, if you need assistance scheduling or getting contact information with teacher.
Upcoming Dates of Importance
5th - Basketball Permission slips due today
10th - Rick Riordan Book Talk 7 P.M. West High Auditorium
11th - 3rd - 4th Graders Basketball practice 3:30 - 4:30 P.M.
13th - 5th Graders Basketball practice 3:30 - 4:30 P.M.
18th - Picture Day
19th - Flu Vaccinations for those students who signed up during registration
21st - In-Service Day - No School for students and end of first quarter
24th - 27th - Book Fair in Library
24th - 27th - Red Ribbon Week
26th and 27th - Parent Teacher Conferences - Early release for students at 12:30
28th - Inservice day/Conferences - No School for students
31st - Subway Lunch Celebration and October Student Birthday Celebration
6th - Day Light Savings turn clocks back 1 hour
Older leaders helping the younger ones remember the signs for the open house music.
Good turn out for our schools open house night. Thank you parents for coming and seeing what makes Susitna so great.
Each class worked on the song and signs during their music class and put it all together for the parents during open house.
Children enjoying riding bikes on a sunny day
We received a grant to have the mobile bike trailer at our school
They were able to go around the school and through the woods on bikes
Susitna Big 5
In music classes this month K/1 students have been continuing their study of pulse, the 4 voices, and tempo through games and movement. The 2/3 students have been learning about body percussion, simple chord borduns, and layering through the piece "Journey." The 4/5 students have been learning about Ostinati and borduns through "Going on a camping trip." They have also been creating their own repeated patterns using rhythmic building blocks and camping nouns, performing for the class in Rondo form.
Susitna Learning Trips
4th Grade Overnight Field Trip
A Seward Trip Of A Lifetime!
This past week the neighborhood fourth grade students went to Seward for their first ever overnight field trip. As part of the every fourth grader in a National Park grant we were lucky enough to be one of a very limited group of students to head out on the adventure of a lifetime. We boarded our buses early with all our gear for our overnight adventure. We saw goats on the mountains and beautiful views from the bus on the trip down to Seward. We arrived at the Kenai Fjords National Park to explore Exit Glacier and discuss climate change as well as the water cycle. We really loved the awesome view from the top of Exit Glacier. When we finished up at the park we headed to the Sea Life Center where we got to explore all of the exhibits. The favorites were the touch tank and octopus. We took classes on bioluminescence and macro invertebrates. We finished up our night by sleeping in between all the birds and seals. We would like to thank our chaperones whom without this trip would not have been possible. Also the STEM department for securing the grant to allow us to go.
Ms. Therriault and Ms. Wilson
William Jack Hernandez Sport Fish Hatchery
2nd Graders listening intently to the biologists at William Jack Hernandez Sport Fish Hatchery
Children using a real silver salmon to make a print
The final print of a real silver salmon! Masterpiece
Biologists showing life cycle of a salmon
Tanks holding live Arctic Char
Waiting to receive our salmon eggs to house in the classroom until they are ready to release next spring
Healthy Future Pictures for PE
We have a Healthy Futures bulletin board outside the gym and we would love to display pictures of students participating in sports, hiking, riding bikes, or any other form of exercise! We will be rotating the pictures on the board throughout the year. This is a great way to motivate kids to get physically active and be proud to show it to the entire school! If you’re interested, please send one picture that you don’t mind NOT getting back.
Mr. Putman & Ms. Malloy
Children working hard to make it through the rock wall during PE.
Children enjoying staying active with hula hoops.
Our rock wall is open to all age groups.
Physical Education News
After school basketball will start soon and permission slips have been sent home and are due to Mr. Putman by Wednesday October 5th. This is for grades 3rd through 5th. Practices will start October 11th for 3rd and 4th graders and are scheduled for Tuesdays. 5th graders will practice on Thursdays starting October 13th. All practices will go from 3:30 P.M. and finish at 4:30 P.M. Parents please have someone there to pick your child up no later than 4:30 P.M.
-Kudos to those students that attended the ASD North Running Jamboree. Susitna had over 100 kids participate in running club and over 40 attend the jamboree! We had fantastic helpers this year working with the Susitna runners during practice after school. Without parental help we would have had to limit participation. Thank you to everyone who helped make it safe and fun.
News from the Librarian
Attendance and Tardies
If your child has missed five or more days of school this quarter, or if s/he has been tardy repeatedly, you will be receiving a letter reminding you of the importance of getting children here on time every day. Absences and tardies can really impact your child’s progress. So, thank you for understanding and helping us with this. Remember, FREE breakfast is served in each classroom beginning at 8:45 daily, so students can come in, eat, and be ready for the 9 a.m. bell!