Berkeley Lake ES

"Bear Essentials" Weekly e-Newsletter, December 6, 2019

Principal's Message

Dear Parents,

I hope that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving break full of fun, family, and food! Please be sure to keep up with the information we share on the school website and school calendar because December is full of special events. Calendar events are also posted at the bottom of this newsletter.

Speaking of the school website, if you have not seen it yet please visit our new look at Many thanks to Ms. Jessica Hill for all her hard work in creating our new site and migrating everything over from the old one. I think it looks fabulous!

Another thing that looks fabulous is our new sign, shown above. The new addition is almost complete and we are moving our media center and art room to the new space at the end of the semester. Stay tuned for an opportunity for the community to tour the new building.

We are looking forward to seeing everyone during the month of December for the Candlelight Luncheons and Winter Parties. Details about Candlelight Luncheon can be found below. While you are here, please stop by the Lost and Found to look for missing items. All items left on December 20 will be donated to a local charity.

Have a nice weekend.

Your Principal and Partner,

Dr. Pendleton

The Lost and Found is Full! Please check it for missing items the next time you visit the school.

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Additional Help Offered During the Holidays

Many of us face economic hardships at various times in our lives. Due to these hardships, we understand that additional help during the holidays may be necessary. The Poplar Hill Baptist Church is able to help a limited amount of Berkeley Lake families with holiday gifts (at least one per child). If you find your family in a position of need at this time, consider participating in this program.

If you choose to participate, please fill out the form below and return it to your child’s teacher or one of the counselors over the next few days. Once we have received the form, we will pass it on to the church. The school is not involved with the program after we have given the church the form. The church will contact you directly.

We must receive the form below by December 13, 2019

Join Us for a PTO Spirit Night at the Chipotle at The Forum:

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Holiday Book Fair and Special Activities at Barnes and Noble

Stop by our school's Barnes and Noble Book Fair, before or after the Chipotle PTO Spirit Night on Monday, December 9th. The Book Fair will feature crafting, holiday story times with Dr. Pendleton and Mrs. Washington, and a holiday sing-a-long featuring Mr. Green and the BLES chorus. The book fair activities are from 6:00 - 8:00, but any purchases you make that day support our school. When shopping, be sure to mention you're with Berkeley Lake!

Chorus Club Performance

The BLES Chorus club will perform a small concert (including some sing-along songs) at the BLES book fair at Barnes and Noble on Monday, December 9 at 7:15 pm. Please join us for this free concert inside Barnes and Noble.

Art Club News

Art Club will not meet next week on December 11th.

K-Kids Club News

The K-Kids and Peer Leaders will be headed to the Leadership Conference Saturday from 9:00 AM- 12:00 PM at Discovery High School. We are excited to attend the 10th annual conference to learn about being effective leaders.

The next K-Kids school meeting will be held on Monday, December 9th at 7:45 AM.

Hat and Glove Drive Sponsored by Student Council

Student Council is having a Hats and Gloves Clothing Drive. Any donations would be greatly appreciated. There is a box inside the front door to drop them off.

Candlelight Lunches

Our Candlelight Lunches will be December 11th -13th. For those of you who are new to BLES, this is a time when family members are invited to come eat lunch with their students. The cafeteria ladies make a feast, and the lunchroom is decorated for the season.

See the lunch schedule below by class:

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District Assessments

During the month of December, students in grades 1st - 5th will take Mid Year District Assessments on the computer. All students will be assessed in Reading and Math, and 3rd - 5th graders will also take district tests in Science and Social Studies. Attendance is important during the testing window, so please make sure your child comes to school on time each day. These tests will count 5% towards your child's final grade in each subject area and measure knowledge of the AKS taught up to this point.

Save the Dates - December Music Performances

Our Berkeley Lake Elementary Chorus will perform the National Anthem and five Christmas/Holiday-themed songs at the 7:35 PM December 13th Atlanta Gladiator's Hockey game against South Carolina. Tickets are discounted for this event. See the flyer below for more details on purchasing tickets.

Our annual Winter Concert Series will be held on Thursday, December 19. Our Strings Club will perform at 4:30, followed by a chorus performance at 5:15. At 6:00 PM, our 4th graders will perform.

Science Fair

If your student will be participating in the Science/STEM Fair, this is a reminder that the paperwork due date is Monday, December 9th. Need more information? Click here to visit Mrs. Bentley's eClass page.

We Still Need Help With the Online Parent Survey from the State

Parents, please take the Georgia School Health Survey if you have not done so already. This state survey can be taken anywhere online but so far only 65 of our parents have taken the survey. This survey is anonymous and can be taken in English or Spanish. Here is the link to the state survey:

PTO News

Photographers Needed

The PTO offers customized photos at the Candlelight luncheon for $5 as a fundraiser for the school. We are in need of photographers with their own cameras (like Minolta or Canon but not cellphones) to work the lunches each day.

We also need people to sit at the table and take the orders.

Click here to sign up.

Thank you!

Raise Money for BLES While Doing Your Holiday Shopping on Amazon

Did you know that Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to our school? AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know. Same products, same prices, same service. Click here to get started and select Berkeley Lake Elementary PTO.

Remember to Buy Your Yearbooks

Yearbooks are purchased and customized by you online.

Go to

Enter our school code 1015217531682993

Positive Behavior Focus for this Week:

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Digital Learning Days

The Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) 2019-2020 school calendar includes two make-up days to address school days missed due to inclement weather. In addition to these days, GCPS also has the option of making up days missed due to inclement weather using Digital Learning Days.

A Digital Learning Day is considered a school day, so students will be accountable for completing the teacher assignments from home, just as they would do at school. The assignments will be found on the teacher’s eClass course page under the Digital Learning Day icon and will be checked by the teacher and considered in the grading process.

Gwinnett Parks and Recreation Free Holiday Event

This Saturday, December 7, from 11:00am - 5:00pm, experience the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center will host a Holiday Arts and Craft Show featuring over 60 local vendors selling handmade crafts, jewelry, clothing, art, holiday decor, and much more! (And you can get all of your shopping done in a single afternoon).

If you need to take a break from shopping and grab lunch, we will have food vendors onsite.

During the show kids will have the opportunity to write their letters to Santa, enjoy our complimentary holiday arts and crafts stations and explore our newest traveling exhibit - Coney Island Visions of An American Dreamland.

Admission is free for this event.

For information, see the flyer below or visit their Facebook link at

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A Look Ahead...

Saturday, December 7

8:30am ES Peer Leader Conference

Monday, December 9

Mid Year District Assessments for Grades 1st - 5th

7:45am K-Kids Mtg

2:45pm Orchestra Club

3:00pm Chess club - Media Center

5:00pm Spirit Night at Chipotle

7:15pm Chorus performs at Barnes & Noble @ The Forum

Tuesday, December 10

Mid Year District Assessments for Grades 1st - 5th

7:00am IT Girls

7:30am PTO Board Meeting

9:00am Advanced English Class

3:00pm Green Team

3:15pm Drama Club in room 3.124

Wednesday, December 11

Mid Year District Assessments for Grades 1st - 5th

Candlelight Luncheon Grades 3 & 5

7:15am No Art Club

9:00am Beginner English Class

Thursday, December 12

Mid Year District Assessments for Grades 1st - 5th

Candlelight Luncheon Grades 2nd & Kindergarten

7:00am Chorus Club Semester 1

3:00pm Good News Club (Media Center)

3:00pm Robotics Club

Friday, December 13

Mid Year District Assessments for Grades 1st - 5th

Candlelight Luncheon Grades 1st & 4th

7:30am Witzzle Pro Club meets

7:35pm Chorus Performs at Gladiators Hockey Game

Spring Milestones Schedule Released - 3rd, 4th, and 5th Grade Students

If your child is in the 3rd, 4th, or 5th grade, he/she will be taking the Georgia Milestones Assessment in the spring. Attendance is very critical during the testing window, so please note the dates below and try not to schedule any appointments or vacations during this time frame. You may also click here for a printable version of the testing schedule.
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Do You Have a Parent Portal Account?

You may have heard about Gwinnett's Parent Portal. The Parent Portal is a website that will allow you to log in and see your child's information, such as attendance, grades, standardized test scores, etc.

If you need to register with the portal, please print and complete this registration form and turn it in to the main office. Along with the completed form, you are required to show a photo I.D. for verification.

We Have a School Store

Berkeley Lake is proud to have our school store open daily before school starts! It is run by highly qualified 5th grade students. Each morning the school store volunteers are in charge of setting up the store, selling items, closing the store, and counting and depositing the money collected. They do all of this before 8:15 in the morning! Our store features school supplies and snacks. All profits go to our Care Team, which helps families in economic need, and the BLES School Counseling Department.

Berkeley Lake Recycles

Berkeley Lake recycles aluminum cans and old clothes and shoes (in any condition) in the two bins in the upper parking lot. The Green Team receives 10¢ per pound of donations, which helps pay the fee for the weekly paper and cardboard pick-up. The aluminum cans are recycled at Progressive Recycling on Simpson Circle. Please support our Green Team by recycling these items here at Berkeley Lake. Thank you!

Remember to Save Those Box Tops!

One easy way to support your school is through the PTO Box Tops for Education collection. Send in Box Tops from products you purchase. To help with counting, you can download this Box Tops Collection Sheet.

Make sure to put your Box Tops on the sheet or in a bag with your name and teacher on it. Drop it into the wooden box in the main hallway near the water fountain. Doing this automatically enters you into a contest.

Each month, we’ll hold a random drawing of all students who submit Box Tops. Winners will be announced on the morning announcements at the end of each month. The prize? A coupon for a free ice cream or an item from the student store. This fundraiser has helped us earn hundreds of dollars for our school!

We Are On Twitter

Follow our school on Twitter @BerkeleyLakeES

Our Parent Center

The Berkeley Lake Parent Center is open each day from 7:30-3:30. The Parent Center is located across from the front office. For Parent Center support please call Ms. Sandra Orci, Parent Liaison, at 678-291-4232.

Our Mission

To provide learning experiences in a secure and stimulating environment where every child can develop to his/her fullest potential academically, socially, and emotionally.

Our Vision

BLES is a positive safe, nurturing environment that fosters respect among all students, teachers, parents and community members, while forwarding world-class achievement that successfully maximizes each student's individual potential through engaging instruction.

Contact Us:

Berkeley Lake Elementary

4300 S. Berkeley Lake Rd.

Duluth, Georgia 30096

P: (770)446-0947

F: (770)582-7514

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