A Weekly Look at Grant Elementary School & the Grant PTA
Week of March 24, 2020
A Message From Principal Grey
Dear Grant Community,
This week the Grant staff is working very hard to organize and plan distant learning curriculum for your students. There will be a blend of physical materials, online assignments, videos, calls, and emails in this coming week. As we approach our first attempt at remote learning/teaching, please keep the following ideas in mind:
- If it's a little shaky on the homefront at the beginning, that's okay! We have time to work out the challenges and make adjustments.
- Not every teacher will utilize the exact same strategies, but each teacher will be clear in her instructions and very open to communication with students and families.
- There will be many opportunities to provide me with feedback to ensure we are meeting the needs of your students the best we can.
- These assignments do not replicate a school day. They are designed to keep your students learning their grade-level content standards and sharpening their academic skillsets.
Your teachers will communicate with you how they would like your students to demonstrate the completion of the assigned work. It is important to note that the completion of tasks and participation in teacher programs represents your student's "presence" at school.
Thank you all for your continued compassion, patience, flexibility and courage during this time. We miss seeing you all arrive each day to campus, but we know our Grant community is intact and strong. We got this.
Video Resource: How to Help Kids Cope During This Challenging Time: Madeline Levine
The American Academy of Pediatrics is offering advice to parents who are stressed out trying to keep themselves and their kids safe amid the coronavirus pandemic. Some key suggestions were to practice self care, reach out to others and watch out for signs of increased stress in children. Psychologist Madeline Levine, author of "Ready or Not: Preparing Our Kids to Thrive in an Uncertain and Rapidly Changing World," joins "CBS This Morning" to share advice for parents.
Friday, March 27th: Student Materials Drive Through at Grant
- 9:00 am-10:00 am: Last Names A-G
- 10:15 am 11:15 am Last Names H-N
- 11:30 am- 12:30 pm-Last Names O-U
- 12:45pm- 1:45pm-Last Names V-Z
If you are unable to come during your assigned time slot, you can come any of the other time slots. If you are unable to come to any, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can find a time for you to come by to pick up your student's bag.
If you do have a vehicle, please drive to this pickup. Our goal is to keep folks from congregating in groups on and near campus. Thank you!
Q&A with Principal Grey
-Are school iPads enough or do we need something else? Can we use other devices in a pinch? Also, is there a tech point person to contact if parents need assistance connecting or figuring something out?
The school iPad should be enough for anything that the teachers assign. However, families can use a home device if would like to. For a student or family/student that doesn't have Internet access, they can contact Comcast/Xfinity and/or Sonic--who are providing free home internet during this crisis. More details can be found on the PCS website at this link or families can call (707) 778-4795 and leave a message for assistance. A district representative will contact the family to help connect them to available resources.
-Will the lessons and assignments provided take up the full school day? Will we have to meet online as a class at certain times or will it all be flexible, like videos we will be able to watch on our own time frame?
No, assignments and instruction are not designed to take up six hours ( a full school day.) For Kindergarten-third grade, it should be about 8 hours per week and for the fourth-sixth grade, it should be about 12 hours per week. The core instruction will have an emphasis on Math & ELA (reading and writing). Other enrichment activities such as Social Studies, Science, PE, Library, Mindfulness, etc will be a part of your student's learning experience at home. Any instruction given on video will be available to your students. Most, if not all video instruction will not be live for this reason.
-Will there be a space for each teacher to keep a record of assignments that students and parents can refer back to?
Your individual teachers will be able to share their protocols with you.
-Thank you for leading our school at this very interesting time. For anyone, the first few days of working from home come with some challenges that we meet and overcome. Can you offer any advice or encouragement to our students and teachers who are doing this for the first time?
Take a deep breath and prioritize your physical and mental health! Get dressed and ready for your school day just like always and have patience with yourself during this time of change. We are all a very important part of this community and so much incredible growth and learning can take place even though we are not all in the same place together! I am already so proud of you all.
Mental Health Message - PCS
From the Petaluma City Schools Mental Health Team:
We know this is a very different time and you may be experiencing many emotions, given our circumstances. Please know that this is new to us all, and whatever you are feeling is okay. You are not alone.
With all the restrictions on what you can do and where you can go, we think it’s important to note that we are all allowed to go outside for exercise—as long as you stay out of groups and keep six feet apart from others. We want to make sure you take advantage of that. Take a walk, run, skateboard, or find some other way you can enjoy moving every day. The fresh air, sunlight, and being able to get out of the house are important for your mental and physical health, while still obeying the shelter-in-place order. Please make sure to breathe and use the healthy coping skills you have learned such as music, drawing, writing, mindfulness, connecting with others, etc. Whatever helps, doesn’t harm, and maintains connectedness and stability.
If you are struggling with emotional overwhelm or other mental health challenges, please email your designated District Guidance Coordinators based on your school site:
Lara Wilson, LMFT
- Grant Elementary School, McDowell Elementary School, McKinley Elementary School, McNear Elementary School, Valley Vista Elementary School
For emergencies, call 9-1-1. The National Suicide Hotline number is 1-800-273-8255. To access the Crisis Text Line, text HOME to 741741.
Mindfulness Sessions with Ozlem
Join our wonderful school mindfulness instructor, Ozlem, for a 15-minute mindfulness check-in. She will connect with our students 1:1 online, and practice mindfulness with some
simple movement. There is no cost. Here is the link to book a session!
What to Expect:
+ Fun and interactive activities for kids such as mindful movement,
breathing and more
+ 15 minutes of mindfulness and a restful break from the business of daily life
+ Best for all grades, siblings, and parents are welcome.
Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our
thoughts, emotions, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment –
with openness and curiosity. It has a variety of research-backed
impacts, including a reduction in stress, and improvements in
emotional regulation, and focus. It is a great way to create a
positive daily routine.
PTA Meeting via Zoom, 3/26 @ 6pm
You are cordially invited to the next PTA Meeting on Thursday, March 26th at 6pm. We will vote in next year's PTA Board and we'll be discussing all things Grant. We'd love to have you with us.
Due to Coronavirus concerns and the current statewide shelter in place order, we'll be holding this meeting via Zoom. You'll need to download the Zoom app and then click on this invitation:
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 369 105 6732
Yearbook Cover Contest Submissions Due 4/3
One thing that isn't canceled? The Yearbook!
It's the perfect time to jump onto treering.com and upload pictures you've taken from the year or even from this Spirit Week in Quarantine. The cover contest is still on - so get your submissions together!
- 8.5 x 11 standard white paper.
- Must include the following words clearly written in the art: GRANT ELEMENTARY YEARBOOK 2019-2020
- Must include your full name and grade on the back in pencil
- Due Date: April 3, 2020
- Submit artwork in the front office. Look for the yearbook art folder.
- Pencils, pens, crayons, markers, paint, computer graphics are all allowed. Sorry, no glitter!
- The Yearbook cover will be voted on by our teachers. The student cover artist will receive a free yearbook and an art basket.
Don't forget to purchase your Yearbook today!
Enter your school’s passcode: 1015022997383930
In the Thank You Column:
- Thank you to Amber Kinard for her extremely generous donation of 350 paper bags to Grant School in support of distant learning!
- Thank you to our amazing staff for being so creative, resilient and committed during this challenging time!
- Thank you to our families for their positivity and enthusiasm for home learning opportunities!
- Big thanks to Principal Grey for working hard to get Distance Learning going and being a great leader in a time of such uncertainty. We appreciate you.
At A Glance
March 26- PTA Board/Association Meeting - Via Zoom
March 30 - First day of Distance Learning Begins. Information from teachers coming.
April 17 & 18 - Mary Poppins in the Shamrock Theater (Multi) - On Hold
May 1 - Volunteer Breakfast - On Hold
May 14 - Grant Open House - Canceled
May 18-22 - Spring Book Fair - May be done online - more information coming
May 27 - 6th Grade Celebration - Old Hold
May 29 - Last Day of School