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Charter News Archives

The purpose of these newsletters is to keep families informed about events and activities that pertain to all programs; such as Board updates, WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges), LCAP(Local Control Accountability Plan), All-Charter events, and other pertinent information. It is also the newsletter for the general public to find out some specifics about all the individual programs we serve. We will be sending this newsletter out every other week. You will be receiving regular emails from the teacher(s) of your specific program to keep you updated on homework, classroom activities and specifics on field trips and special events for your child.


Charter News, November 19, 2017-18

posted Nov 20, 2017, 10:13 AM by Rhonda Schlosser


"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them."

- John Fitzgerald Kennedy




Dear Charter Families,



We hope you and your family have already begun a happy and relaxing Thanksgiving holiday.  A week off with family and possibly special events is a great way to recharge the brain, take the focus off of solely progressing through learning materials and rather take the time to look at something with a fresh perspective.


Recently I was reminded of the importance of having strong soft skills for happiness, resilience, and even future long-term employment. These skills are often referred to as the Habits of the Mind in academic literature. There are 16 habits, and as habits are, they are in constant development.  I love looking at learning through the lens of developing these habits; all of the programs and staff make use of these habits in their work with their students.


I know that all of you support (many, most, all of) these habits naturally in the home.  The more that our students understand the value of these habits, the more that they too can help to develop them in themselves as they get older.  


I have listed the Habits of Mind for you here for those who are interested. Perhaps you’d like to use one of them as a lens when doing something enjoyable with your children this week.


-Persisting, -Managing Impulsivity, -Listening with Understanding and Empathy, -Thinking Flexibly, -Thinking about Thinking (Metacognition), -Striving for Accuracy, -Questioning and Posing Problems, -Applying Past Knowledge to New Situations, -Thinking and Communicating with Clarity and Precision, -Gathering Data through All Senses, -Creating, Imagining, Innovating, -Responding with Wonderment and Awe, -Taking Responsible Risks, -Finding Humor, -Thinking Interdependently, -Remaining Open to Continuous Learning.



Again, thanks for all your help in developing these important skills at home. Thank you for loving and caring, laughing and playing and exploring new learning with your children, -- and thank you for sharing them with us.  

 

May your week be full of good food, good company, and happy moments.


~Rhonda



NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


Parent Advisory Committee: Thank you to the parents who came and reviewed our WASC report draft.  You gave me good feedback that was added to the report.  It is a tremendous help to have parents who are educated on the systems and reports of the Charter meet with me regularly so that I can gain a parent perspective.  I really appreciate it (probably more than you realize).

Thursday, December 14, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.


Opportunities in our Community:

Substance Abuse: A Conversation with Educators and Experts - Nov. 30 SLV High School

We welcome parents from all SLV schools to join us Thursday, November 30 at 6:00 pm in the SLV High School Multi-Purpose Room for a discussion about substance abuse among teens. Sergeant Nicholas Baldridge from the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Department will be presenting on current drug trends in our youth population and within Santa Cruz County. Mary Clark, Adolescent Admission Counselor from the CAMP Recovery Center, will follow with a presentation on drug treatment options and resources for adolescents in our area. She will be available to field questions and provide follow up for any families that have concerns and possible immediate needs. We will close with Dr. Amy Solomon, Board Certified Addiction Specialist and Family Doctor serving the San Lorenzo Valley since 1996, to discuss the risk factors leading to substance abuse and handouts to help you start collecting your own thoughts on the subject.  Whether you are working through these types of issues with a teen or just want to be more informed, please come and get some useful information.


Congratulations to our Charter Student winners of the Air Quality Art Contest:

Fall Creek Program: Aydria Cruz; 1st grade, Ivan Cruz; 3rd grade, Justice Armstrong; 4th grade, Natalee Thomas 5th grade.Nature Academy: Haven Wallace Menge; 8th grade. They were honored at the November 15th board meeting. We send out a job well done to all the participants!!


SLV Charter Current Fundraisers:

The Fall Creek Booster Club will be at the "Santa Comes to Town and Tree Lighting" in Boulder Creek on 11/24/17, behind the IOOF building on Hwy 9 from 4-630pm. We will be selling hot cider (from Gizditch Farm juice) and homemade baked goods. Come join us and support our program!

 

Nature Academy and Coast Redwood Middle School Parent Clubs are currently running their ChicoBag Fundraiser. Chico Bags fit our environmental theme, they are not very expensive, they are easy to transport, and our programs get to keep 40% of the proceeds.  Here is a digital copy of the catalog to share with family and friends who might be interested in purchasing bags and supporting the school:  ChicoBag Fundraising Catalog. Please contact the teacher or PArent club lead for deadline information.

 

All Charter Winter Holiday Craft Fair, Dec. 1, 2017

This is an opportunity to share our creative talents and support each other's artistic endeavors by selling and purchasing each other's crafts and/or food. Students and parents are encouraged to make and sell their craft items!  It's great fun for the kids to sell their creations and buy from their friends, bartering is always on hand as well : ) Please email Amber Walker at awalker@slvusd.org if you would like to participate and have a space to sell your wares (It will be a shared tablespace, approx. 3ft. X 3ft.)  The deadline to reserve a table is Monday, November 27, 2017.  When: Friday: December 1, 2017,      Time: 10:00 am to 2:00 pm   Where: Rooms 14, 15, and 16 (and maybe 17) at the Quail Hollow Campus


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

Coast Redwood HS:This past week has been yet another busy week of science and history exploration, benchmark writing, mystery solving, and math computation with new insights into the many functions of numbers. Students have also been actively engaged in their music, sports, art, theater, culinary arts, physical education, martial arts, and dance! It has been amazing to observe the many individual accomplishments of our students in their elective areas of interest. Super Stars! We celebrated our annual Thanksgiving Potluck Feast, the food was phenomenal and the turnout and companionship was a warm way to begin our Thanksgiving Break.  College acceptance letters are coming in ~Congratulation to Portia Simmons - University Colorado at Denver.

Coast Redwood MS: We debated fair rules for Dodgeball, tried them out in play and then revised. Most of the kids completed writing their blender reviews, revising and editing. Jen talked with the kids about listening.  Afterward, I led the kids in a mindful listening exercise and had them write about what was easy and what was challenging about it. The kids worked on figuring out the real costs of materials used to make each container of lotion; a challenging process as each step is composed of multiple steps and multiple operations. Kudos to our first presenters!  We heard wonderful presentations on raising ducks and on autism.  We went over the criteria for evaluating the presentations and each audience member gave their feedback in writing to each presenter.

Nature Academy: The trimester closed at the end of this week.  This is the first trimester of our non-graded pilot  The teachers have worked at length together to develop comprehensive student self-reflection assessment sheets for each academic content area.  The students took time in the classes this week to look back through their work thus far, reflect on what they did well in, where they could have done better, and where they wanted to focus their goals for improvement in the coming trimester.  Kudos to the students as they really took an honest look at the efforts and made realistic goals that the teachers can work with them on when we get back from the holiday.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): Students have spent part of each day in the afternoons exploring watercolor techniques to choose which themes to create a body of work to sell at our Winter Craft Fair. What a lovely evening we had at our first “World Foods Potluck”. The menu was incredible with foods from Persia, Japan, Ghana, Scotland, Cuba, Sweden, and more, and some wonderful personal family favorites. Students worked on their self-reflections of their academic progress, organization skills, and personal responsibility.

Quail Hollow Homeschool:  We discussed similarities and differences after reading 2 different version of Stone Soup. Our friends made a wonderful Stone Soup everyone contributed and had fun doing it. During our Wednesday Nature Day, we learned the differences between moss and lichen and gathered and examined specimens on our walk through the park. We Tie Dyed socks for the Holiday Craft Fair.

Fall Creek Homeschool:  We have been discussing and exploring sea creatures and working on a mural for our classroom. We took a field trip to the UCSC life lab to help the students make the important connection between farms and the food on their dinner table. This included hands-on exploration of the 25 acre UCSC farm. We had two visitors from Seaquoia Seaweeds who led us in an activity of drawing the food chain in a kelp forest. We saw how the sea otter is a keystone species. Then we felt and tasted 4 types of seaweed.

Mountain IS: In art, we added gourds and glitter to our harvest collages so that they could glow under their starry nights and harvest moons. In theatre, we watched a fabulous musical inspired by Greek mythology put on by our own Mountain 5th and 6th graders. We practiced our African chant and dance for music in preparation for our upcoming school performance in December and we sang a song using American Sign Language. Students created words for a familiar song by adding their own emotions and verbs and body parts in Language Arts.


Dates to remember:

  • November 17: End of First Trimester

  • November 20th-26th:  Thanksgiving Break

  • December 1: All-Charter Craft Faire 10-2:00 pm

  • December 22nd- January 7th:  Winter Break

  • January 25: End of first Semester



This is a reminder that San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District policy, as set by the Board of Trustees, declares that we are a fragrant-neutral district.  As we begin to have our drama performances and other site-based activities and meetings, please take care to follow the policies below for the sake of the students and members of our community who are highly allergic to fragrances and scents.

The SLVUSD Board of Trustees adopted a California School Board Association policy to make all district classrooms and offices fragrant neutral. SLVHS has parents, students, and community members with respiratory issues who can have negative reactions to fragrances. Please take care to follow the policy while on campus.  

Staff and students shall refrain from bringing furred or feathered animals, stuffed toys that may collect dust mites, scented candles, incense or air fresheners and from using perfume or cologne, scented hair spray, nail polish or nail polish remover that are not fragrance-free in classrooms or other enclosed areas or buildings.

Charter News: November 5, 2017-18

posted Nov 5, 2017, 7:02 PM by Rhonda Schlosser



“...most people in the world don't really use their brains to think. And people who don't think are the ones who don't listen to others.”    ― Haruki Murakami, 1Q84




Dear Charter Families,


Halloween has passed, daylight savings time ended this Sunday, and the holidays are just around the corner. Regardless of the program your child is in with us, it’s time to assess their studies and perhaps take some time for a reflection with them. Are they remaining creative? curious? Do they have a consistent routine for their school work?  Are you helping by sharing your own curiosity? Reminders of assignment deadlines? Supporting them in the special ways that serve them best?  Keeping in tune with our children and their needs, keeping the communication door open, being conscious of the need for consistency, boundaries when needed, hugs, laughter, being a listener when needed, was the parenting challenge that I was constantly working on when I was raising my children (now grown and gone). Kudos to you all! It’s the hardest and most important job of all.  We thank you for working so hard with raising your children.


With the focus on College and Career this past week, the message heard from many of our guest speakers was that the skills most needed in the work environment are the soft skills; the ability and willingness to collaborate with others, to have the ability to think critically, work creatively, and to have the grit necessary to stick it through and complete the task. First and foremost are strong communication and listening skills. Again, thanks for all your help in developing these important skills at home.


Please read on to learn more about what is happening in the Charter programs and the district.


~Rhonda



NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


From Our Counselor, Jen Sims:  Listening

Happy November!  This month I will be going into classrooms to work with students specifically about listening.  I’m not talking about the ‘listen to your teacher’ kind of listening, but the deep kind of listening and understanding that is an essential part of communication and ultimately creates greater empathy.  


People think I do a lot of problem solving as a therapist, but really 90-95% of what I do is just listening.  It’s challenging at times because I am not the best or most natural listener.  Like anyone else, I find myself going into problem solving mode. Through the years and various experiments with style, however, I’ve learned that what is nearly always most effective is a closed mouth and open ears.  This way, I end up hearing the things that people are saying, but won’t let themselves hear.  I help them come to terms with or manage these things, and through removing these obstacles people gain the ability to solve their own problems.  Here are some ideas for how you can use these same techniques to strengthen your listening relationship with your own children.


Undivided Attention

If only I had the capacity and ingenuity to solve all problems! Instead, I have the unique opportunity (usually) to be a focused listener in a quiet space.  While quiet, private time is not essential to good listening, your undivided attention is absolutely required.   The way I see it, this is mostly about the person to whom you are listening.  So often a student will turn up at my office door with what they feel is a HUGE dilemma and I will start to feel nervous – how am I going to help this little person?   There are so many complicated relational issues as children move through developmental milestones.  Then after I have sat and listened for a while, that student will suddenly announce, “Wow, I feel better!”  No problem solving necessary!  I have done literally nothing but been a person who looked at them and nodded while they talked.  Think about your own experiences of sharing and consider what situations have lead to you feeling fully heard.  How satisfying was that?  Did you ever feel that just saying what you needed to out loud was enough?  Most of the time it is enough for our students.


Non-Judgmental

In my role as a counselor, I hear all kinds of things that don’t personally sit well – politics that I disagree with, behaviors I find uncomfortable or scary, even video games or television programs that I don’t find interesting.   I have learned over the years that inserting my personal feelings are a sure-fire way to shut someone down and stop them from sharing – sometimes for good.   Removing our own judgment (or just keeping it to ourselves) is so important to good listening.   My mentor used to reassure me that unless we are sitting on the bench in robes with a gavel, we don’t have to worry about whether or not something someone is telling us is true, if their response matches the situation, whether they are right or wrong, or where their motivations come from.  In my experience, people are usually judging themselves so harshly that adding my two cents can actually devastate a strong connection.  


Whole Listening

I can often figure out the path I want to take in counseling by listening to everything someone is saying – everything.  For example, a downward glance from a child when asking how about how math class is going might lead me to inquiring more – even though they said things are totally fine.  As I get to know students better I learn about their ‘tells’ – a curve of the lip when one is feeling anxious, rocking back and forth harder in the rocking chair when I am touching upon a vulnerable subject, a quick grimacing smile when I am saying something they like but they don’t want me to know.   I also pay attention to their tone of voice and overall energy – anything that seems dissonant is something for me to bring to light and share with the speaker.       

Reflect and clarify

We can use our ears to biologically hear words, but truly understanding is a whole different ball game.  Using reflective statements can help you clarify the meaning behind the words and will help you get a clear grasp on the situation, making sure the speaker feels truly heard.  A reflective statement is saying something back to someone in a slightly different way, and perhaps deepening it to encourage further discussion.  Here are some examples:

“Sounds like you felt left out when that happened”

“You want your teacher to understand that you’re trying your best”

“It seems like you don’t know how to tell her how you feel”

I try to leave the door open for correction.  A student might respond, “I didn’t feel left out, I felt mad!”  This gives me a greater understanding of what’s going on inside.

For younger children, use simpler language or just reflect back the emotion:

“You look angry!”

“You’re happy with your new bike!”

“I see that you wanted that balloon but it flew away”

This will start your child on the road to connecting their actions and emotions and give them a greater ability to express themselves moving forward.

        

You don’t need the answers

Don’t worry about having the perfect answers.  In fact, don’t be afraid to say, “I don’t have the answers,” if in fact you truly don’t.  Something I say often is, “I don’t really know what to do right now but I see that you’re in pain and I want to support you.”  The student can then let me know how best to proceed.


Listening takes practice.  Give yourself the opportunity to do it in a quiet contained space if you can – like driving in a car.  You can practice these skills one at a time and see how they work.  Back in my early days as a therapist I would do this – practicing all reflection, all quiet, all non-judgmental statements.   This helped me practice not going into a mode that was just about helping that person with a specific problem and learn to trust the process of listening.  You will see what works the best with your child and move on from there.  Happy NOT problem solving!


An Opportunity for CRHS students: The SLVHS Drama group is having an informational meeting on their upcoming play, West Side Story this Monday, 11/6, at 3:00 in the HS MPR. They will go over how to best prepare for vocal auditions in January. Will Gilford will keep us apprised as to when and where auditions will be held.


😀 RETAKES November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD: possible reschedule due to rain)  Please contact Danelle Matteson or your teacher for final update!


Parent Advisory Committee: Next meeting will focus on reviewing the Charter WASC report and Charter board presentation.  Thursday, November 9, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.


FREE AUTO EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATOR (AED) TRAINING

Each year, there are an estimated 10,200 cases of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in children nationwide. Are you prepared to help if a child or adult needs to be resuscitated?

This free training is designed for parents and the general public and covers:

  • How to use an Auto External Defibrillator (AED)

  • Quick Comprehension Only CPR

  • When to call 911

These hands-on trainings are limited to 25 participants free of charge. There will be a sign-in sheet at each event. The first 25 on the list are eligible for the training. So don’t be late, you won’t want to miss this free training event!

Training dates, locations and times are as follows:

November 14th                4:30pm – 6:00pm       SLV Cafeteria

November 16th             4:30pm – 6:00p           BCE Multi-purpose Room


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

It's time to start planning your ideas for our All Charter Winter Holiday Craft Fair, Dec. 1, 2017

This is an opportunity to share our creative talents and support each other's artistic endeavors by selling and purchasing each other's crafts and/or food. Students and parents are encouraged to make and sell their craft items!  It's great fun for the kids to sell their creations and buy from their friends, bartering is always on hand as well : ) Please email Amber Walker at awalker@slvusd.org if you would like to participate and have a space to sell your wares (It will be a shared table space, approx. 3ft. X 3ft.)  The deadline to reserve a table is Monday, November 27, 2017.  When: Friday: December 1, 2017      Time: 10:00am to 2:00pm   Where: Rooms 14, 15, and 16 (and maybe 17) at the Quail Hollow Campus

 

Coast Redwood HS:This past week has been busier than normal as we have celebrated Halloween, College and Career Week, and ended the week with a field trip to the Cultural Center in Watsonville to celebrate Dia de los Muertos. A shout-out to our Leadership class and to Keidi for orchestrating a fun-filled "All Hallows' Eve" celebration. College & Career week included guest speaker Ben Hammond from the SCCOE Outdoor Science School who discussed the many occupations and opportunities available through the county outdoor science schools. Rory McKee followed up with a slide show outlining occupations in Environmental Sciences, Parks and Recreation, and in the State Parks. Another guest speaker was Briana Giorgione from Longs Marine Lab, who spoke about opportunities available to students with Marine Science and Psychology degrees. A common thread of skills and knowledge all students heard from our speakers is to build their skills in communication, cooperative teamwork, observation, critical analysis, research, data analysis, as well as technical skills and experience with spreadsheets! Our desire is for our students to make connections between what they are learning in their various classes to how they will apply their knowledge in their workplace environment.  Friday, November 9 marks the end of the second quarter, we freeze grades for all students and hand out progress reports. Remember, these grade freezes are only markers for our students and parents to gauge individual progress. The only grades that will appear on a student’s transcript are the final grades at the end of semester one and semester two.  Important College Deadlines CSU & UC Applications are Due by November 30th. Don't Procrastinate!

Coast Redwood MS: PE:  We filled in gaps we discovered in our Capture the Flag game description and then played a very enjoyable, smooth-running game.  It is a pleasure to play PE games with a group of kids who understand and agree to the rules of play! Class Business, Logo:  Cyndi, Kovas’ mom, shared a video on the psychology of color, then showed various font styles, first clarifying what image we are trying to project (hand-made, local, clean, healthy for people and the environment, student-made).  It was difficult for some of the kids to choose fonts based on what projects the business mission best, and not just go for what shows their individual personality/interests the best. Class Business, Lotion-Making:  It was great to get started on our first product production of the year!  Many skills across the subject areas were involved in the process, including: following written directions, dividing measurements, lab norms, collaboration roles, oil rancidity, melting points, emulsification, friction, gels, measuring weight with a triple-beam balance scale, measuring volume, measuring temperature, using an unfamiliar blender, removing air pockets. Art: Tina helped the kids notice how line quality can vary in a drawing. She introduced different shading methods, how to draw parallel lines, and directed them to create their own value scales using only regular pencils. River Hike: Navigating the terrain took continuous focus. As much as the hike in the river was a learning experience, the hike to Henry Cowell was also one. I don’t think the kids will take that stretch of road for granted now that they know more intimately what they have passed hundreds of times in the car.

Nature Academy: Mesopotamian studies continues in Ms. Hope’s class. The Hammurabi Code Project is underway as is the study of Assyria. Students are completing their personal narrative essay. 7th-8th graders are continuing their in-depth study on the Brain,with an emphasis on researching the pros and cons of screen time. The end of the trimester is around the corner and students are busy completing their writing assignments, including their free choice science book/articles.  

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): Hogwarts day on Halloween was a blast! Students sorted into houses by taking a quiz, then studied our spells and had a wizarding duel in the dance room (Improv game using spell casting instead of the word, “Splat”.) Carolyn, Jamey’s mom, joined us for an impromptu story at the end of the day while we enjoyed our butterbeer. For the rest of the week we had a mellow pace, learning/discussing, notetaking on the history of World Religions, which is our next history unit. The students gave great feedback regarding the problem solving class we had. All were working together and sharing strategies on how to solve these tricky math problems. On Thursday, Jen Sims joined us for our monthly talking topic, “Listening”. Wednesday, November 15: QHIA Movie/Game Night/World Foods Potluck from 6-8:30pm Parents, please join us for an evening of exploring foods from different countries/cultures, with the option for the kids to watch a movie, play games, etc. Next week each student will select the food that they will prepare.STOMP! Tickets have been purchased. Thank you Sheryl Lane for making this happen for us!

Quail Hollow Homeschool: We had a wonderful week of sharing together with fun activities on Halloween.  A special Thank You to the parents who supported our class by donating their time and energy to run a station on that fun day. Stone Soup - We will read the story Stone Soup and making our own version in class.  Please plan to bring a single item to contribute to our group soup for this day! Tie Dye and Gift Wrap It was discussed at our last parent meeting to have a booth for our Annual Winter Holiday Craft Fair to raise money for our program.  We are going to make and sell tie dye socks AND have a wrapping station booth with hand made gift bags. We met in our Henry Cowell gathering spot for Nature Wednesday, and did a brisk exercise to warm up on this crisp morning.  After a discussion of leaves and trees, and the story, We are Going on a Leaf Hunt, we walked along the river and collected interesting leaves. We stopped at the Fremont Tree and made leaf rubbings of various leaves and bark in our nature journals. We had a wonderful day at the Scott's Valley Public Library. We were well taken care of by Librarian, Victor Willis.  All friends were issued their own library card and given the responsibility of caring for books that everyone can enjoy. We were given a tour of the library, and specifically explained the layout of the children's section.  Then he read a few wonderful stories. We spent the next happy hour exploring the shelves and reading stories to each other. We walked to Sky Park where we ate lunch, and friends played at the playground.  We played an active game of clothes pin tag and ended the day with another story.

Fall Creek Homeschool:  We had a stupendous Halloween Day of crafting and games. We made cornhusk dolls, apple pie, applesauce, glitter “sugar skulls” drawings, and paper pumpkins. We played target games and painted mini pumpkins, strung beads with glow sticks for light during trick-or-treating, and made homemade caramel corn! Thank you to all of the parents and Fall Creek alumni who helped to make it a truly fun day. We also listened to a Halloween story from 1958 that my mother used to read to me and my sisters when I was very young. We ended the day with a compliment and comment circle. We listened to a news story about how they are beginning to use sailboats to transport goods along the Hudson River in an effort to clean the river of pollutants. We discussed the parts of a boat and labeled a diagram of a typical sailboat. We made boats from corks, toothpicks, paper, yarn and eyelet screws. We hiked to the pond and dam where we  floated our boats. We ended the day with a compliment and comment circle. Each year we do some kind of research report. Students enjoy doing this project and presenting it to their friends in class. The research is done at home and each student presents their report to the whole class. We will be mostly presenting on unusual creatures of the Monterey Bay. The report should include photos, drawings and text concerning the creature. These should be displayed on a cardboard presentation board (poster board). A rubric will be used to make sure your report is complete. Students who are not yet writing can dictate content and/or copy content onto their report boards.

Mountain IS: We started our Halloween off with a costume parade, the Hokey Pokey and the Chicken Dance. We had a great turn out as always for this Mountain School event. We read books about Frida Kahlo one narrative and and another nonfiction informational text. With Danika's help we used Microscopes to investigate vegetables up close like Frida Kahlo did as a child. We also used vegetables to recreate a skeleton as we felt our own bodies and discussed anatomy facts. We created Dia De Los Muertos and Frida Kahlo inspired Sugar skull designs. Guest speaker, Claire, shared her experiences about providing assistance to families in Africa. She shared her stories about helping villages in setting up Bio sand filters through education and supplies. Perhaps some of you may enjoy creating your own filters. In the Congolese village that Claire visits, these filters have dramatically increased the health of the locals in addition to creating a small income stream which provides enough revenue for children to attend school. Her images and stories are an important reminder for us all in appreciating our own great fortune. She also helped to connect disabled women with manual sewing machines and sewing business opportunities. She imports their clothing and sells them at her shop,The Outback Trading Company. Art: We began a line drawing project with black glue inspired by fabrics from Africa. Next week the students will use chalk pastel to add vibrant colors and sew pieces together. We will eventually create a "thank you quilt" to give back to Claire for her compassionate service.


Dates to remember:

  • November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs : (time TBD)

  • November 10th:  No School-- Veteran’s Day

  • November 17: End of First Trimester

  • November 20th-26th:  Thanksgiving Break

  • December 1: All-Charter Craft Faire 10-2:00 pm

  • December 22nd- January 7th:  Winter Break

  • January 25: End of first Semester



This is a reminder that San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District policy, as set by the Board of Trustees, declares that we are a fragrant-neutral district.  As we begin to have our drama performances and other site-based activities and meetings, please take care to follow the policies below for the sake of the students and members of our community who are highly allergic to fragrances and scents.

The SLVUSD Board of Trustees adopted a California School Board Association policy to make all district classrooms and offices fragrant neutral. SLVHS has parents, students, and community members with respiratory issues who can have negative reactions to fragrances. Please take care to follow the policy while on campus.  

Staff and students shall refrain from bringing furred or feathered animals, stuffed toys that may collect dust mites, scented candles, incense or air fresheners and from using perfume or cologne, scented hair spray, nail polish or nail polish remover that are not fragrance-free in classrooms or other enclosed areas or buildings.



Charter News: October 22, 2017-18

posted Oct 22, 2017, 3:01 PM by Rhonda Schlosser



“Individual Commitment to a group effort; that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” -Vince Lombardi




Dear Charter Families,


“It takes a village”  This phrase is used to signify that it takes more than one person, one effort, one avenue to make a difference. It is a phrase that we believe is a critical way of working in our Charter, within all our programs, in order to ensure the best for our students.  For us, this phrase means that families need to keep in relationship and communication with other friends and family members who can help them to support the positive growth of their children.  Your children are our children, and we are there for you as well.


Academics and a healthy social-emotional life work hand in hand.  What we have found is that sometimes we are working with another element that can be subtly working against our united village: social media and screen time sometimes takes precedent in our student’s development beyond what we initially perceive.  


Social media and excessive screen-time use among children and family members can sometimes create an environment that can negatively alter the face to face communication skills and/or attention span capacity needed for an active engagement with studies and/or with friendships.  It may beneficial to reflect on the use of screen-time, social media sites, and apps in your family.


This is not a black or white answer. It is important to take the time to reflect on what level of screen time and social media is appropriate for your children and household.


If you are interested to learn more about how to support a healthy use of media in your family, here are a few articles and videos you may like to review. (A big thank you to our teacher, Melissa Stockton for sharing these links.)

Media Use in School-Aged Children and Adolescents -American Academy of Pediatrics

"15 Surprising Benefits of Playing Video Games –  Mental Floss Magazine" (article)

"5 Crazy Ways Social Media Is Changing Your Brain Right Now" Asap Science, Sept. 7, 2014 (Video)


Another resource that I subscribe to is Tech Talk Tuesdays from Screenager’s filmmaker, Dr. Delaney Ruston.  The blog subscription emails conversation starters about social media, video game use, tech tips and more.  Here are a couple of the latest examples:

The latest app to join the social networking roster, TBH (To Be Honest) is meant to share positive vibes. Users anonymously receive and can send superlatives, such as “Best person to get a cup of coffee with?" or "Who is most likely to keep in touch with friends after ten years?"

Questions to bring to the table.

  • What are some other ways to foster positivity online that is anonymous? That is not anonymous?

  • What do you think the pros and cons are for anonymous apps?

  • What are the ways you feel that you most authentically give people positive feedback? Give yourself positive feedback?

  • Most of us are our own harshest critics. Do you have tricks to help you notice when you are putting yourself down? What compliments do you ever give yourself?


Are our kids losing their in-person communication skills? Discusses communication skills with our children or students. Including a communication tool that comes from a field of therapy, called DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy), created by Marcia Linehan. It’s called DEAR, and it is great to use when anyone is about to ask for something that they are nervous about.

D = Describe the situation   

E = Emotion you are feeling about the issue

A = Ask for what you want

R = Reiterate how it will benefit both of you if this can be worked out

How do we improve our face-to-face communication skills? Here are some questions to get the conversation started:

  • Who do you know that is an excellent communicator? What makes them so good?

  • What do you do when you are experiencing conflict with a person? Do you communicate about it only online, or both online and offline?

  • Do you think people can learn to be better communicators?

  • Can everyone try to do DEAR once in the coming week—perhaps with another family member so that it feels less awkward trying it?

For more discussion ideas, you can peruse past Tech Talk Tuesdays.

Please read on to learn more about what is happening in the Charter programs and the district.


~Rhonda


NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


A huge THANK YOU to the CalFire crews, local fire departments, and Hot Shots who came to fight the Bear fire and  protect the homes and structures in and around Boulder Creek.  I have heard many stories of how our community rallied together to help those in need during this emergency. We hope that you all came out unscathed!  

What happens when a disaster strikes? Our district has systems and procedures in place. For more information about District Emergency Information please click on this Emergency Procedures Link to access the SLVUSD Emergency Information Page. You will find a lot of handy information in pages that you can print and have readily available.  


Toyota Drive for Schools: Fundraiser! A big thank you to everyone who participated in this fundraiser.  Maybe this year, we will have a big winner!


Message from the Parent Advisory Committee: Thank you to the parents who attended. We have representation from nearly all programs now. We discussed Charter and District three main goals in Math/Literacy, SEL, College & Career and discussed ideas and concerns. Next meeting will focus on reviewing the Charter WASC report and Charter board presentation.

Next meeting is Thursday, November 9, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.


After School Performing Arts opportunities

Thrill the World! 2017 (Michael Jackson's "Thriller" Event)

Preparation and counting down worldwide is part of the fun, but the feeling of being connected to others and dancing together as one is a Thrill like no other! This year the event will be held in Santa Cruz on Saturday, October 28, 2017, at the Louden Nelson Center lawn at 3 pm sharp. LAST REHEARSAL Oct. 27 from 3-4:30 pm at the Quail Hollow site room 29,


All Charter Musical: Cinder-Idol-What the World Needs Now! Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed and choreographed in 2005 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) It is the classic tale twisted together with today's reality talent show craze, with step-sisters resembling the Spice Girls, Motown fairy godparents, 80's big hair rockers, and music ranging from pop, rock n' roll, Motown, and the Beatles.

  • Auditions: 3-5:30pm, Mondays/Tuesdays, Oct. 23, 24; Rm 29

  • Rehearsals: 3-5:30 pm, Mondays/Tuesdays in November and December; Rm 29

  • January Rehearsals: 3-6pm at the SLV PAC, Jan. 8, 9, 16, 22, 23

  • Tech Rehearsals: 3-6pm, Mon. and Tues. Jan 29 and 30 at the PAC

  • Dress Rehearsal: 3-6pm, Wed. Jan. 31 at the PAC

  • Performances for SLV classes: Thurs. and Fri., Feb. 1 and 2 at 10:30 am

  • Evening Performances: Thurs., Fri., and Sat., Feb. 1, 2, and 3

If you have any questions about any of these dates, feel free to email me; awalker@slvusd.org.  I look forward to sharing my love of performing arts with your students!

Sincerely, Amber Walker  - Charter Teacher -Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA)


 😀 RETAKES

November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

It's time to start planning your ideas for our All Charter Winter Holiday Craft Fair, Dec. 1, 2017

This is an opportunity to share our creative talents and support each other's artistic endeavors by selling and purchasing each other's crafts and/or food. Students and parents are encouraged to make and sell their craft items! We have had everything from photo cards, friendship bracelets, and earrings made by students, to essential oil blends and exquisite quilts made by parents. It's great fun for the kids to sell their creations and buy from their friends, bartering is always on hand as well : ) Please email Amber Walker at awalker@slvusd.org if you would like to participate and have a space to sell your wares (It will be a shared table space, approx. 3ft. X 3ft.)  The deadline to reserve a table is Monday, November 27, 2017.  When: Friday: December 1, 2017      Time: 10:00am to 2:00pm   Where: Rooms 14, 15, and 16 (and maybe 17) at the Quail Hollow Campus

Coast Redwood HS: Classes are in full gear with learning and projects taking place daily. In our classes this past week we opened up a dialog for students to share their feelings and emotions about what was happening in their community and beyond. We were all happy to have our first sprinkle of rain which brought us a sense of renewal. Continuing with this month’s theme of Communication, Advisory spent the first hour with students divided in groups to problem solve a task through communication. The field trip to the Garden of Eden was lots of fun with a scavenger hunt as part of the fun. It was an active day searching and exploring, which rejuvenated many of our students. Not one computer or phone was in sight! Rory McKee, our counselor, spoke to our students in English about the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and the background for obtaining aid for college. Also successful was our student enrollment taking the PSAT. Rory will assist you understanding your results when they arrive. Friday 10/27 - Field trip to CSU Monterey Bay Monday 10/30 - College & Career Night at Cabrillo College! 6:00pm-8:00pm COAST REDWOOD ANNUAL HALLOWEEN PARTY: Tuesday, October 31 starting at 11:00 with a costume contest, potluck luncheon, and more!

Coast Redwood MS: A brief update on classroom activities: Presentation Preview Meetings:have your CRMS student present their research and project to me to receive my suggestions for improvement a week before s/he presents it to the class. - Circle Check-In: we focused on the Bear fire and neighbors and friends who were in danger. -PE: Students filled out the game description template, hammering out the rules to Capture the Flag, using supporting evidence to convince others of their points of view.  When we actually played the game, we saw the need for even more rules. -Art: -Logan’s mom Tina talked about her background in art, including attending art college. She showed some of her paintings asking what feelings they evoked.  We drew a simple figure, first upside down and then right side up and we compared the difference in our experiences.  We then took that drawing and scaled it up, using a grid. -Marketing: Willow’s dad, Jimmy Pezone came in and talked to us about important considerations when marketing our Healthy Redwoods products.  We’re hoping that he will return to help us with next steps. -Mindfulness:  We took a minute to turn our attention inward and focus on the simple experience of hearing sounds.

Nature Academy: 6th graders are studying the book “The Little Prince”, with literature analysis in preparation for a final essay assignment. They are also working toward making their personal cuneiform as part of their Mesopotamian studies. 7th-8th graders are continuing their in-depth study on the Brain, integrating charting data in spreadsheets as part of their science studies and reading, analyzing, and integrating information about brain development in various writing assignments. There will be a Nature Academy Skate Day on Friday, October 27th from 10:30-12:30.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): Here is a brief recap of our academic activities: -Students completed their Science packets on Genetics. -We ended our study of the Byzantine Empire by watching a really well done documentary on how engineering helped build this golden era: -The students sorted skittles and worked on the computer-art program, Pixlr, learning the tools to edit and pixelate portraits and paintings. This is an extension of our Roman/Byzantine Mosaic study. -Students worked on their individual myths, and we did some reader’s theater with the play, “Escape from Ilium”. -We clarified next steps the students are working in math. Thursday, Oct. 26: First Book Club Meeting at 3pm in the Resource Center (organized by Miles...yay!)

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Younger students used a lot of movement working on personal space, holding our own, following directions, and counting together. We practiced an emergency earthquake/fire drill, read, Last Stop on Market Street, and discussed their experiences with sharing empathy.  Older students ordered decimal numbers down to the hundredths place,  created equivalent fractions and ordered proper fractions. Together, we had a Pumpkin Activity: we conducted scientific observation skills and games with our miniature pumpkins, ending the activity with a balancing pumpkin relay race. We read aloud the poem ‘Jabberwocky’ in unison. Drum Circle - older students did a terrific job leading the circle with their own beats and adding improvisation.

Fall Creek Homeschool: Our field trip to the Monterey Aquarium was wonderful! We listened to a news story about how scientists are tracking incidents of humpback whales helping other marine animals escape from Orcas. We drew detailed illustrations of life at the beach and along the shore onto their watercolor paintings from last week. We used a new book from the Aquarium to follow step by step directions for drawing marine creatures. We drew them and cut them out in preparation for making a mural of the Monterey Bay. We listened to three more chapters of Buoy.

Mountain IS: We practiced sign language for feeling vocabulary. We had a class brainstorm about things that make you happy, sad and mad. In Life Lab we weeded and observed signs of Fall. We played many math games; domino, and  Mexican Train with the older students. We created a multi media starry night watercolor and created covers for our feelings books. In music the older students played ukuleles and the younger students sang songs and chants with creative movement.


Dates to remember:

October 27th:  End of Quarter 1 grading period

November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs : (time TBD)

November 10th:  No School-- Veteran’s Day

November 17: End of First Trimester

November 20th-26th:  Thanksgiving Break

December 22nd- January 7th:  Winter Break

January 25: End of first Semester



Charter News October 1, 2017-18

posted Oct 1, 2017, 8:46 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


“Listen with curiosity. Speak with honesty. Act with integrity. The greatest problem with communication is we don’t listen to understand. We listen to reply. When we listen with curiosity, we don’t listen with the intent to reply. We listen for what’s behind the words.”     - Roy T. Bennett





Dear Charter Families,


October is here, the seasons are shifting, and the school rhythm is in full swing.  This Charter News has a few important reminders for you to review, but the majority of it is focused on our monthly correspondence from our counselor Jen Sims.  She too is in full swing working to support our students, developing the skills that can deepen our level of empathy with each other.  Please read on and take a minute or two to digest what she shares.  I have also little snippets of activities from our various programs..truly wonderful things happen in our classrooms, and all so unique.


Please read on to learn more.


~Rhonda



From Our Counselor, Jen Sims:  Communication

Hello!  Since my last communication, I have facilitated more than 20 empathy groups with the students of the Charter School Programs and Boulder Creek Elementary. It’s been great to spend time with so many students and teachers.  I have had fun participating in the special dynamics that make up each classroom group.  It has definitely been a learning experience!


Just to let you know, the children in this district are pretty good at empathy.


I came to the students with a daunting task:  -Sit and listen to your classmates.  -Share when it is your turn.  -Listen with open ears, open eyes and an open heart.  I did not approach any class with an exact agenda, other than I wanted to assess their current abilities to process things in a group and to make some points about empathy. I can say for sure that there was not one dull moment in any group. From kindergarten all the way to 12th grade, most students were anxious to share their experiences and worked hard to hold space for their peers.  I asked groups to answer different questions, depending on their age: “What’s your favorite thing about school?”, “Why do you come to BCE”, “What gets in the way of having a great day at school?”,  “Talk about a time when you felt empathy for someone, or talk about a time someone felt empathy for you.”


To iron out some communication basics, we talked about ‘real listening’ vs. ‘fake listening’ before starting group conversations. Students of all ages waved their hands in the air when I asked about this - they knew exactly what I was talking about:


  • “Fake listening is when you look at someone when they are talking, but you are thinking about something else.”

  • “Fake listening is like this: (looks at pretend phone while saying ‘uh huh, uh huh’)”

  • “Fake listening is when you’re looking around the room or watching tv while someone is talking to you.”


Listening to these comments I scanned my own experiences with the kids, thinking about times that I myself have been a fake listener.  Honestly, there are too many to mention and I am the school counselor!  It’s not realistic to be a perfect listener all the time, but this was a great reminder that children are really paying attention to when we’re not.   


This brings me to my topic for the month – communication.  In many ways, communication is at an all-time high in our world.  We can be in constant contact with each other through phone, texts, emails, and social media sites like Facebook. World news travels so quickly that we know about far away events almost immediately.  Any thought or feeling that crosses our mind can be imparted through our social media pages within seconds.


The impact has been strange.  Because of the Internet, I feel like I, along with the world, has some increased personal empathy.  We are able to learn about people and communities that we might not have had access to in the past.  We can read people’s words; hear their voices and perspective.   At the same time, I wonder if our world is smaller because we are taking in the information in a 2 dimensional way.  Other than comments sections, which are usually quite dysfunctional, how do we process what we have learned with real people?  Not just the people around us, but also with people who might disagree with us?  How do we hold empathy in those situations?


Learning to communicate what is inside


We all need to be able to decipher and communicate the feelings we are having inside both to others and to ourselves.  While working with a child of any age, I find ‘I don’t know’ to be a common response when I ask them how they are feeling.  This is an opportunity to dig deeper and work on skills that connect thoughts, emotions, and language.  Did you know that every feeling has a corresponding physical sensation?  This is factual and a good place to start.  Ask them, where do you feel this emotion in your body? Give them a variety of words to talk about feelings so they can describe the nuances of anger, happiness, sadness or worry.   We are not born with the natural ability to figure out and talk about emotions, but if you keep practicing the skills of noticing and saying what is happening inside, I promise your child will get good at this.  I don’t make very many promises as a therapist, but I have seen this happen enough that I believe it to be true.


The movie ‘Inside Out’ has been so great for helping kids understand and express feelings.  I have had success using this movie as a jumping off point for this skill.  I am also a huge fan of Dr. Becky Bailey who developed the ‘Conscious Discipline’ model.  She has made many helpful videos about coaching children of all ages through their feelings.  Here is a link to some of her youtube videos:


https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Becky+Baily


What I love so much about Dr. Bailey is that she also focuses on helping parents manage their emotions so that they can step back and become better teachers of emotional skill.


Just listen


Earlier I mentioned how tuned in children are to the fact that adults are not always paying attention.  I have compassion around this because I know how many directions a person can be pulled even in just one day.  However, the more we listen to children – truly listen – and create space for them to share, the better communicators they will become.  Going into their world is going to increase your empathy for them as well.


If you’re not already doing this, the next time you have a conversation with your child, practice being present and NOT problem-solving.  This is tough because of course, you want your children to be safe and having already been through this period of life, you know the answers!  But letting your child just talk is invaluable.  Sometimes it is all someone needs to feel better, to just let it out, and sometimes hearing their own words out loud can help them come to a solution themselves.  To encourage your child to keep the communication going, try using some prompts like:


  • Tell me more about that?

  • Wow!

  • I can tell you’re really feeling  __________ (name a feeling)

  • It’s okay to let it out

  • I’m here for you

 

You will want to regularly check in – even if your child is not up to talking at one point (or many points).  Leaving that door always open is meaningful, even if it seems like your child doesn’t really notice. “Whenever you’re ready, I will be here,” is a good way to let them know you are available.  It is also a great idea to circle back around to previous discussions.  “How did things work out with your friend?”  This makes the point that you are listening and interested in an on-going discussion.


Timing is everything


You have probably noticed that there are certain times your child will open up more than others.  Parents have told me that teenagers become more willing to talk in the car.  Other kids might prefer dinnertime, bedtime or Saturday mornings.  Whenever it is, pay attention and seize the opportunity to open the space for communication.  It is really up to you to be the initiator as you are teaching your children these skills.   Trust that they are paying attention and will eventually develop that habit of coming to you as a reflex.  


Offer encouragement and praise


People really enjoy positive feedback and your children are no different.  Sometimes it’s easy to get lost in parenting; I know at least as a counselor I am occasionally itching to deliver a message related to their bigger picture (ie, school or behavioral responsibilities). This gets in the way of my ability to really hear and I can see that it shuts them down.  I have noticed that a child will tell me a little bit and as I use encouragement, they will open up and tell me more.  Make a point to look for honestly positive aspects of what your child is bringing to you and highlight them.   Even if you don’t like what your child is saying, you can let them know how great it was that they came to you.  That kind of unconditional positive regard will make you a safe person to approach.


Hard conversations are hard


There is no getting around it: hard conversations are just hard.  If you are already working on developing open communication with your child, you will be more practiced and prepared when they come around.  It may be tempting to skip them or not share the whole truth, but developmentally appropriate honesty is crucial to helping kids truly understand the world.  Using all of the emotional communication skills, active listening, timing and encouragement that you are practicing every day will help make the tougher conversations more effective, clear and honest.


One of the driving forces behind my initiative to have group conversations with classrooms every month is to practice all of the skills necessary to become comfortable communicators.  It is my hope that as the year progresses we will be able to have the face to face conversations necessary for getting through relational and ideological disagreements with empathy and grace.  When parents are working on this at home, the chances of success increase exponentially.  It is hard work, but I believe the impact of this will go far beyond your family, this community and the school district, and in fact, benefit the entire world.


Toyota Drive for Schools: Fundraiser!

Ticket sales are happening now through Thursday, October 19.  You can buy tickets from your Booster Club representative or teacher.  Prizes include cars, $25,000, and many other great prizes.  The best thing about this fundraiser is that your student’s program retains 100% of the money from tickets sold.



Message from the Parent Advisory Committee Member, Laura Bowers:  As Rhonda mentioned in the last newsletter, we had a very small turnout for our first committee meeting (only representing the Nature Academy and CRMS). The Parent Advisory Committee is an excellent way to support teachers and students in your school, to advise on school plans, funding, and resources, within the school, and to identify ways that the charter programs can collaborate. Please consider joining this committee to advocate for your program and the Charter school as a whole. It is a great way to make a difference and to be involved!  Our next meeting is Thursday, October 12, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.


DACA information. Please open the link below to read a letter from Michael Watkins, County Superintendent of Schools regarding DACA. Website link:  here


After School Performing Arts opportunities coming up soon!!

Thrill the World! 2017 (Michael Jackson's "Thriller" Event) Rehearsals

When: Thursdays: Oct. 5 and Oct. 12 and Fridays Oct. 20 and Oct. 27 from 3-4:30 pm

Where: Rm. 29 (the dance room) on the Quail Hollow Campus

No need to sign up ahead of time. Just show up.

This event was founded in 2006 in Toronto and has now spread to six continents. Every October people in cities around the world dance to "Thriller" at exactly the same time.  Preparation and counting down worldwide is part of the fun, but the feeling of being connected to others and dancing together as one is a Thrill like no other!  Celebrating the truly inspirational genius of Michael Jackson in a living and moving way is what keeps people coming back year after year.  This year the event will be held in Santa Cruz on Saturday, October 28, 2017, at the Louden Nelson Center lawn at 3 pm sharp.


All Charter Musical: Cinder-Idol-What the World Needs Now!

Last year we had a great turnout, with 60 students from each and every program in our Charter participating.

Informational meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 10 at 3 pm for students and parents.

The meeting will be held room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.

You will get a synopsis of the script, hear about characters and musical numbers, and get detailed info on the rehearsal schedule/requirements.


This year, the play will be, "Cinder-Idol-What the World Needs Now". Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed and choreographed in 2005 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) It is the classic tale twisted together with today's reality talent show craze, with step-sisters resembling the Spice Girls, Motown fairy godparents, 80's big hair rockers, and music ranging from pop, rock n' roll, Motown, and the Beatles.

Come to our meeting to find out more details!

  • Auditions: 3-5:30pm, Mondays/Tuesdays, Oct. 16, 17, 23, 24 in Rm 29

  • Rehearsals: 3-5:30 pm, Mondays, and Tuesdays in Rm 29

  • January Rehearsals: 3-6pm at the SLV PAC, Jan. 8, 9, 16, 22, 23

  • Tech Rehearsals: 3-6pm, Mon. and Tues. Jan 29 and 30 at the PAC

  • Dress Rehearsal: 3-6pm, Wed. Jan. 31 at the PAC

  • Performances for SLV classes: Thurs. and Fri., Feb. 1 and 2 at 10:30 am

  • Evening Performances: Thurs., Fri., and Sat., Feb. 1, 2, and 3

If you have any questions about any of these dates, feel free to email me at awalker@slvusd.org.  I look forward to sharing my love of performing arts with your students!

Sincerely, Amber Walker  - Charter Teacher -Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA)


 😀 Put your smiles on and brush your hair, Charter picture days are coming soon! More information will be sent closer to the picture dates.

  • October 5th: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

             P.S. These pictures will be taken outside for a natural background.

  • October 16: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

Coast Redwood HS: It has been a busy week for students with onsite classes, AP classes, independent study/homeschool classes, sports, clubs, Cabrillo, capping our week off with our 9/10th grade Advisory Meeting. Advisory update: Our 9th/10th graders arrived in the morning and were presented with a group question, "How can we foster _____at CRHS," and proceeded to write their thoughts on the paper taped below each poster students drew and colored at the last week’s Advisory meeting.  The message and question this week was, "what did you observe this past week between friends and peers on campus." The student comments were inspiring, positive and supportive. Next, the students were off to the tennis courts for a rousing and challenging (Keidi's version) of the "Badminton Game." Our students had lots of fun with this team building exercise! In closing, all the teachers met with their students to discuss Power School, updated grades, Schoology, classes, and reiterated the importance of staying organized at home, at school, and in their planner book. Many students stayed a bit longer to meet with Rory with their college questions and Rory's recommendations. Students also stayed to work on various assignments to turn-in next week. Well done everyone!

Coast Redwood MS: We had a fabulous day at Mt. Hermon Outdoor School led by Suzy, Erin & Rebecca.  Part of the process at Mt. Hermon includes group discussion to tease out deeper understandings from the activities.  We continued that process in class as we looked at our patterns in the roles to which we naturally gravitate. Circle Check-In: Due to popular demand we participated in our usual Wednesday morning circle check-in. The kids verbally rated their in-the-moment physical and emotional well-being on a scale of 1-10 and backed up their claims with evidence. High-quality listening was practiced by all. Project Presentation Leadership: While the new students were at the library, continuing students brainstormed a list of advice to offer new students about how to best tackle their first project presentation. We also worked on questioning skills to help new students begin the process of picking a topic. Through this process, students were also able to get a good start on outlining their own project.

Nature Academy: 7-8th graders continue their in-depth study of the Brain with various articles, discussions, writing, drawings, and a sheep brain dissection!  6th-grade class completed their work on a 3D representation of the layers of the earth.  All grades had a great time on their hike through Pogonip and to the Evergreen Cemetery. The 6th-grade class will have an excursion to the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco on Oct. 6th.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): This week we finished up our study of Cell Structure and Function, and read/compared Ancient Greek Culture and Roman Culture, focusing on Ovid’s Epic Poem “Metamorphosis” for themes present in Roman History and Mythology. The students will be writing their own myths over the next two weeks. Any extra reading of Roman/Greek myths will be a great inspiration to draw from. They continue to enjoy Improv with Hunter and are working through the tedious art-style of Roman Mosaic.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: We had a great time on our annual camping trip: what great way to begin to build our community. We will begin an 8-week Outdoor Adventures Component on Wednesday, October 18th.  In addition to our activities in our k-2 and 3-6 groups, we have been having great Group Activities: We worked in multi-age groups using only small cups to build the tallest possible tower.  This STEM activity required students to plan and work together to engineer a tall and stable structure. Friends built many structures over 60 cm tall, and a few reached over 70cm! We worked in multi-age groups to each create a personal collage, with some facts and info about ourselves, and a pictorial expression of who we are and what we love. We ended the day with one big compliment circle, all together. Elkhorn Slough Kayaking Trip Friday, October 13 This is another one of our Annual Favorites! This particular trip is for 3rd grade and up​

Fall Creek Homeschool: We played “telephone” as an introduction to a theme about truly listening to each other.We discussed one way and two-way communication and the circumstances of each.  We discussed shellfish and drew a Venn diagram of animals that would be considered “mollusks” and those considered “crustaceans”. We examined seashells of all kinds, identified them and colored drawings of them to match the real item. We listened to the true story of a captive pilot whale who was bullying other dolphins and how the empathy of the dolphins to his plight resulted in his no longer being a bully. We discussed the three general zones of ocean life – sunlight, twilight and midnight. We discussed what ocean creatures would live in which zones and why. We drew schemata of the three zones in our rainbow books and then added creatures. We listened to a true story of a pod of dolphins that protected a class of junior lifeguards from a great white shark.  We split into two groups and each group had a session on empathy with Jen Sims.  We will be going on a hike into Fall Creek Forest. Our trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium is on Wednesday, October 18.


Mountain IS: Our next book for our Book Club is The Incredible Journey which we will discuss on October 24. Students k-6th are welcome, but we ask that k-2nd attend with a parent. Please bring a snack to share. It seems everyone is in favor of the idea of participating in a service project and presenting their experience to the class in a medium of their choice throughout January. For now, we are just planting the seed. Students and IS families are welcome to collaborate on a project together or work independently. It may be as part of a pre-existing organization, or a particular area you are passionate about or see in need of help. I look forward to hearing about students practices in empathy. During class, Jenni and Jackson Harn shared their photo journal from this summer while their lizard had babies. They also helped our students set up a lizard tank to house our new class pet. A sign-up sheet will be posted soon in hopes of enlisting volunteers for cricket donations. Thank you again to the Vallett's for hosting the apple picking and cooking event. There was no shortage of good old-fashioned farm fun. Isn't it amazing the wealth of resources we have in our IS community? Thank you all for how much time, effort and generosity you have given so far to our families this school year.


Dates to remember:

October 5 and October 12: Vision and Hearing screening

October 5: First Rehearsal for Thrill the World event 3-4:30 at the Quail Hollow Campus

October 5th: Picture Day: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

             P.S. These pictures will be taken outside for a natural background.

October 10: All Charter Play (Cinder-Idol) information meeting at 3pm for students and parents. room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.

October 16: Picture retake day: (during PE period) Nature Academy 6-8 grade

October 27th:  End of Quarter 1 grading period

November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs : (time TBD)

November 10th:  No School-- Veteran’s Day

November 17: End of First Trimester

November 20th-26th:  Thanksgiving Break

December 22nd- January 7th:  Winter Break

January 25: End of the first Semester


Charter News September 15, 2017-18

posted Sep 17, 2017, 2:58 PM by Rhonda Schlosser   [ updated Sep 25, 2017, 3:10 PM by Charter Admin ]


Slow but steady wins the race. ~Aesop


If you ask an introvert a question, wait until she thinks about it. Introverts think before speaking, not through speaking. If you want to get to the good stuff, you need to slow down.  ~ Laurie Helgoe





Dear Charter Families,


Three weeks in the school year and the programs are working with their students to find how best to support their individual needs as well as to develop the classroom culture.  Both of these take time.  Teachers create a variety of activities and opportunities in order to build a foundation in the classrooms that will sustain everyone throughout the year, allowing for all learners and ways of learning to have ground to flourish.


I was reminded recently of the importance of allowing time for the silent minority to speak, of allowing empty space to surround a question, for taking time for quiet to solidify a thought. There are introverts, as well as extroverts in the world, both have valid ways of working and coming to an outcome. Those of us who are rejuvenated by solitude and quiet are sometimes overwhelmed by the rapid pace of the day, of a classroom, of a room full of activity.  Similarly, some students work better in groups, some show their best when able to work on their own.  The beginning of the year is the time to explore and appreciate the various ways we can learn and express our understanding.   So much to learn about how to work and well and learn best together!


Please read on to learn about special events coming up.


NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.



~Rhonda


Toyota Drive for Schools: Fundraiser!  Ticket sales are happening now through Thursday, October 19.  You can buy tickets from your Booster Club representative or teacher.  Prizes include cars, $25,000, and many other great prizes.  The best thing about this fundraiser is that your student’s program retains 100% of the money from tickets sold.


Parent Advisory Committee: We had a very small turnout for our first meeting. This may be because the year has just started, because parents are content, too busy, or not content. I do not know the reason and it may be a variety of reasons, but am still asking for at least one representative from each program to attend and have your voice, and the collective voice of your students program, be heard.  Charter schools are unique. They are a school of choice. Families are here because they made the choice to enroll, to learn in a different model.  Because of this, your voice really matters.  We make changes to how we do things not only because of the external requirements from the State or District, but also because of what you, our families who choose to stand with us want and believe is important for your child’s learning environment.    Come learn about how our Charter works and how your voice can be heard!

And thank you to those who share your voice, either at this meeting or individually when you can!


Our next meeting is Thursday, October 12, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.    Laura, one of our parents will share more before the next meeting date.


Unique After School Performing Arts opportunities open to All Charter students.

Amber Walker, one of our Charter teachers who specializes in the performing Arts leads two fun and fantastic opportunities that are available to All Students in Every Program of our Charter.  Please read on for more details.  They have become annual favorites for many of our students.


Thrill the World! 2017 (Michael Jackson's "Thriller" Event) Rehearsals

When: Thursdays: Oct. 5 and Oct. 12 and Fridays Oct. 20 and Oct. 27 from 3-4:30 pm

Where: Rm. 29 (the dance room) on the Quail Hollow Campus

No need to sign up ahead of time. Just show up.

This event was founded in 2006 in Toronto and has now spread to six continents. Every October people in cities around the world dance to "Thriller" at exactly the same time.  Preparation and counting down worldwide is part of the fun, but the feeling of being connected to others and dancing together as one is a Thrill like no other!  Celebrating the truly inspirational genius of Michael Jackson in a living and moving way is what keeps people coming back year after year.  This year the event will be held in Santa Cruz on Saturday, October 28, 2017, at the Louden Nelson Center lawn at 3 pm sharp.


All Charter Musical: Cinder-Idol-What the World Needs Now!

Last year we had a great turnout, with 60 students from each and every program in our Charter participating.

Amber will have an informational meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 10 at 3 pm for students and parents. The meeting will be held room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.

You will get a synopsis of the script, hear about characters and musical numbers, and get detailed info on the rehearsal schedule/requirements.


This year, the play will be, "Cinder-Idol-What the World Needs Now". Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed and choreographed in 2005 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) It is the classic tale twisted together with today's reality talent show craze, with step-sisters resembling the Spice Girls, Motown fairy godparents, 80's big hair rockers, and music ranging from pop, rock n' roll, Motown, and the Beatles.

Come to our meeting to find out more details!

Auditions: 3-5:30pm, Mondays/Tuesdays, Oct. 16, 17, 23, 24 in Rm 29

Rehearsals: 3-5:30 pm, Mondays, and Tuesdays in Rm 29

January Rehearsals: 3-6pm at the SLV PAC, Jan. 8, 9, 16, 22, 23

Tech Rehearsals: 3-6pm, Mon. and Tues. Jan 29 and 30 at the PAC

Dress Rehearsal: 3-6pm, Wed. Jan. 31 at the PAC

Performances for SLV classes: Thurs. and Fri., Feb. 1 and 2 at 10:30 am

Evening Performances: Thurs., Fri., and Sat., Feb. 1, 2, and 3


If you have any questions about any of these dates, feel free to email me at awalker@slvusd.org.  I look forward to sharing my love of performing arts with your students!

Sincerely,

Amber Walker  - Charter Teacher -Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA)


 😀 Put your smiles on and brush your hair, Charter picture days are coming soon! More information will be sent closer to the picture dates.

  • October 5th: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

             P.S. These pictures will be taken outside for a natural background.

  • October 16: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.


Coast Redwood HS:  We have enjoyed our time meeting with our new families and with our returning families. Students participated in the Waddell Creek hike. It was a fantastic and memorable day hiking with new friends and rekindling old friendships all-the-while figuring out the scavenger hunt questions. We launched the first Advisory day. Nearly all 9th and 10th graders arrived to participate in activities and an exercise in character and empathy. Students then came to their teachers with general questions regarding their courses, Schoology, online math, permission slips, community service and schedules. Rory McKee was available speaking to students about their college pathways and choices. Magic the Gathering: The first club to get started this year is "Magic the Gathering." Meeting times will be at lunch in room P3 from 12:05-12:30 Mondays and Wednesdays starting on Monday, September 18. Student Voice Collective: First Student Voice Collaborative meeting is Friday, September 22 at 8:30 am (room P3) before the Meeting of the Tribes in room P3.

Coast Redwood MS: One on one meetings and solidifying field trips and group activities for the rest of the year continues to be the focus as families focus on their homeschooling.

Nature Academy: 7-8 and the 6th grade classes had a great time at their annual ropes Course at Mount Hermon. An all grades big hike is planned for  September 22, 2017. They will be hiking from the Rincon parking lot through Pogonip to the Evergreen Cemetery for an all day hiking adventure!!

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): Sophia Vanklootwyk-Forde, who presented a Tedx Talk“The Kindness of Strangers” in which she recounts the global connections she made when traveling across 7 impoverished countries in Europe on her bicycle. Improv begins for 5 weeks. First Field trip to Montalvo Arts Center to see Ramayana-The Indian Epic, Sep. 18.  Students were very inspired by Character Day, even creating their own Animoto video that they shared.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Will have their annual Homeschool Family Campout at New Brighton State Beach Campground September 19-21.  

Fall Creek Homeschool: Elkhorn Slough is having a free family day with lots of activities on Sept 23 from 9-4. We’ll be studying estuaries later in the year so it could be a great introduction. http://www.elkhornslough.org/

Mountain IS: The children are blending together in such a caring manner. This week we discussed "Empathy" and how we can all support each other. We began our journey in using sign language by watching a music and signing video of the song "We are Going To Be Friends" by the band White Stripe.


Dates to remember:

October 5 and October 12: Vision and Hearing screening

October 5: First Rehearsal for Thrill the World event 3-4:30 at the Quail Hollow Campus

October 5th: Picture Day: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

             P.S. These pictures will be taken outside for a natural background.

October 10: All Charter Play (Cinder-Idol) information meeting at 3pm for students and parents. room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.

October 16: Picture retake day: (during PE period) Nature Academy 6-8 grade

October 27th:  End of Quarter 1 grading period

November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs : (time TBD)

November 10th:  No School-- Veteran’s Day

November 17: End of First Trimester

November 20th-26th:  Thanksgiving Break

December 22nd- January 7th:  Winter Break

January 25: End of first Semester



Charter News September 1, 2017-18

posted Sep 4, 2017, 4:54 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


“All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be

undertaken with painstaking excellence.”       -Martin Luther King Jr.





Dear Charter Families,


We have now completed the first week of school and we ended on such a hot note!  Everyone is shifting back into the weekly groove and the end of Summer has laid its full heat upon us. ...Please take care this weekend to stay cool and not over exert in this extreme weather this weekend.


It is always rejuvenating to kick off the school year by having the first few days of school working on Professional Development with all of our staff.  Everyone in the District and in the Charter took the two days to heart and integrated what was learned into their already full toolbox of strategies. The truth is that it is the passion, flexibility, creativity and relationship skills of the teachers and the broader team that makes a school year shine for our students.  And I must say, (with all humility) that I think that our Charter team is one of the best!  We really enjoy working together. And again with humility, we are supported by a great district that appreciates our out-of-the-box programs and how we work to maintain our flexibility in order to help our students thrive.  Relationship building is key to any and all long standing learning opportunities. I hope you agree that your student’s teacher(s) and program are starting the year building a relationship that is personal and heartfelt.  That is what we have all dedicated to working with this year: maintaining empathic relationships as we teach your children.


Our programs may be unique from each other, and they may support different grade levels, but we do have many things in common; philosophies about developmental, brain-based learning and supporting the whole child, teaching strategies that encourage collaboration, critical and creative thinking, thematic projects, building affinity with our community and the natural world, as well as joyful engagement with others.


One of the foundational elements that all of our programs share is our commitment to supporting the social emotional well-being our our students, your children. This year our mental Health counselor, Jen Sims, will be systematically working with the staff and students each month to help develop a deeper sense of empathy for one another.


Please read her article in the newsletter to learn more.  Also please read on to learn about special All Charter VAPA opportunities for your child as well as special All Charter dates to put on our calendar.


NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


Have a wonderful Labor Day Weekend.


~Rhonda


From Our Counselor, Jen Sims:  It begins with empathy.


Do you remember the first time that you felt empathy for another person? If not the first time, can you remember the most powerful time?


I’ll give you a minute to think about it.


Next…do you remember the first time you felt someone’s empathy toward you? If not the first time, can you remember the most powerful time?


Take another minute.


When you were remembering these events, what happened for you? What happened inside your body?


Before school started, I had the opportunity to pose the above questions to the teachers and staff who are working with students at SLV Charter and the Boulder Creek Elementary School. Most agreed that even just the memory of events in which they experienced empathy brought up strong emotions. The experience of empathy can powerfully impact our lives, and in fact change them forever. For many of us, empathy is where our paths began; what lead us to be parents, teachers, helpers and healers. That felt experience of seeing and being seen is hard to turn away from.


This year I will be exploring empathy with the students of SLV Charter and the Boulder Creek Elementary Schools (I am the counselor at both). In addition to my usual work of seeing kids individually and in groups, I will be going into classrooms each month to lead activities and discussion geared toward developing student’s empathic skills. Each month I will write an article corresponding with our monthly theme so that parents can stay in the loop of what is being discussed at school and practice more at home. This month, of course, it begins with empathy.


We might think that people are just born with the ability to empathize or not, but according to Dr. Gwen Dewar, empathy is actually a catchall term for three distinct processes: 1. Sharing emotions, which occurs when one feels distress after observing another person in distress, 2. Empathic concern, which is the motivation to care for someone who is in distress, and 3. Perspective taking, the ability to put

yourself in someone else’s shoes. A rare person might score very high or very low across the board, but most of us are going to have varying levels of skill in each of the processes. It will also change over time with development and experiences. Providing children the opportunity to practice will strengthen their abilities.


To be empathic, we need to have the tools to self-regulate. Working with your child to find coping skills will help them set boundaries around the strong emotions of others. It’s hard to stay calm when someone is crying or upset. A natural reaction might be to shut down emotionally or move away from the person, which can put a stop to any empathic response. If your child can deal with themselves first and foremost, they will be better able to respond to others in an empathic manner.


Look for ways to model empathy every day. One of the best ways to do this is by being empathic with your child. When they experience an emotion, ask them about it and coach them through. Try to imagine what things might feel like from your child’s perspective and the things they may or may not have control over. Try to do this even if it is a negative emotion toward you! Having empathy does not mean we will necessarily like or agree with the other person and it does not mean we will solve a problem, but understanding more about someone else’s experience will go a long way in negotiations.


When you are out and about, or watching TV, and see a person in distress ask your child how they think that person might be feeling? With such a vast emotional world out there coming at us at all times, you can use these opportunities to help your child navigate the seas. If you don’t have those resources available (ie, you are alone), feel free to make up scenarios for your child to ponder and discuss. To deepen the experience for younger children, ask them to make the corresponding ‘emotional face’ to how the other person may be feeling.


It has been found that humans experience more empathy with those that share commonalities with them. Help your child understand that regardless of what we may look like on the outside or what we may believe, it is still possible that we are more alike than different. Encourage their sense of curiosity and questions about others. With the Internet as a resource, we have the ability to learn countless things about people from other parts of America and the world without needing to travel anywhere!


Developing a sense of right and wrong that is not based on reward or punishment is essential when it comes to empathy. Working with your child to promote an internal moral compass can help motivate them not only to engage in compassionate behavior, but also to take action when necessary. Older children can learn more specifically about ‘moral disengagement’ and research projects like the Milgram experiment, in which participants were urged to administer an electric shock to another person by a man in an authoritative white lab coat. Despite the fact that the people being shocked were screaming and passing out (they were actually faking it), participants continued to shock them when directed to do so by the authoritative man. Having a cognitive awareness of this possible tendency in humans may help your child make a different decision.


I’m so looking forward to spending this year working with the children, parents and staff of the San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District. If you have any questions or concerns about your child, or would like to sign them up for counseling, please contact me at jsims@slvusd.org.


Parent Advisory Committee: The Charter’s Parent Advisory Committee is a great way to stay involved in the Charter and to help guide the direction of the programs at the broader level.  Parents in this committee learn about and help shape the Charter’s guiding documents such as the Charter Petition, Local Control Accountability Plan, WASC, classroom support, public relations, etc.  I would like at least one representative from each program to have a voice on this committee.

We will meet the Second Thursday of each month throughout the year. Please come to the First meeting on September 14 from 3-4pm to learn more.   This is a great way for the Booster Club representative to share with each other as well!

If you have additional questions, please email me! rschloser@slvusd.org


Unique After School Performing Arts opportunities open to All Charter students.

Amber Walker, one of our Charter teachers who specializes in the performing Arts leads two fun and fantastic opportunities that are available to All Students in Every Program of our Charter.  Please read on for more details.  They have become annual favorites for many of our students.


Thrill the World! 2017 (Michael Jackson's "Thriller" Event) Rehearsals

When: Thursdays: Oct. 5 and Oct. 12 and Fridays Oct. 20 and Oct. 27 from 3-4:30 pm

Where: Rm. 29 (the dance room) on the Quail Hollow Campus

No need to sign up ahead of time. Just show up.

This event was founded in 2006 in Toronto and has now spread to six continents. Every October people in cities around the world dance to "Thriller" at exactly the same time.  Preparation and counting down worldwide is part of the fun, but the feeling of being connected to others and dancing together as one is a Thrill like no other!  Celebrating the truly inspirational genius of Michael Jackson in a living and moving way is what keeps people coming back year after year.  This year the event will be held in Santa Cruz on Saturday, October 28, 2017, at the Louden Nelson Center lawn at 3 pm sharp.


All Charter Musical: Cinder-Idol-What the World Needs Now!

Last year we had a great turnout, with 60 students from each and every program in our Charter participating.

Amber will have an informational meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 10 at 3 pm for students and parents. The meeting will be held room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.

You will get a synopsis of the script, hear about characters and musical numbers, and get detailed info on the rehearsal schedule/requirements.


This year, the play will be, "Cinder-Idol-What the World Needs Now". Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed and choreographed in 2005 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) It is the classic tale twisted together with today's reality talent show craze, with step-sisters resembling the Spice Girls, Motown fairy godparents, 80's big hair rockers, and music ranging from pop, rock n' roll, Motown, and the Beatles.

Come to our meeting to find out more details!

Auditions: 3-5:30pm, Mondays/Tuesdays, Oct. 16, 17, 23, 24 in Rm 29

Rehearsals: 3-5:30 pm, Mondays, and Tuesdays in Rm 29

January Rehearsals: 3-6pm at the SLV PAC, Jan. 8, 9, 16, 22, 23

Tech Rehearsals: 3-6pm, Mon. and Tues. Jan 29 and 30 at the PAC

Dress Rehearsal: 3-6pm, Wed. Jan. 31 at the PAC

Performances for SLV classes: Thurs. and Fri., Feb. 1 and 2 at 10:30 am

Evening Performances: Thurs., Fri., and Sat., Feb. 1, 2, and 3


If you have any questions about any of these dates, feel free to email me at awalker@slvusd.org.  I look forward to sharing my love of performing arts with your students!

Sincerely,

Amber Walker  - Charter Teacher -Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA)


 😀 Put your smiles on and brush your hair, Charter picture days are coming soon! More information will be sent closer to the picture dates.

  • September 11th: Nature Academy 6-8 grade: (during PE period)

  • October 5th: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

             P.S. These pictures will be taken outside for a natural background.

  • October 16: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)


CAFETERIA NEWS: Breakfast is $2.50 and Lunch $3.50. Application for free and reduced lunch can be found on the SLVUSD Nutrition Webpage: http://slvusdcafe.com/


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

Wednesday, Sep. 13: Character Day http://www.letitripple.org/character-day/  All programs will be participating in this Nationwide event in a variety of ways.

Coast Redwood HS:  Auditions for the Fall 2017's student-directed play will be held on Tuesday, September 5th and Wednesday, September 6th  in the SLVHS - MPR starting at 3:00 pm. Callbacks will be announced if necessary. You MUST BRING a ONE MINUTE DRAMATIC OR COMEDIC MONOLOGUE. Preferably off-book. SPORTS: X-COUNTRY Practices are starting after school and open to all. Meet on the track. You must have your athletic paperwork completed.

Coast Redwood MS: The Trowbridge opened their home and hosted the Welcome Potluck. Delicious food, swimming, ping-pong, basketball, and trampoline were some of the activities that brought the students together.

Nature Academy: To kick off their support with Empathy, all students watched the film Inside Out together on Friday.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA):First Field trip to Montalvo Arts Center to see Ramayana-The Indian Epic, Sep. 18

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Will have their annual Homeschool Family Campout at New Brighton State Beach Campground September 19-21.  

Fall Creek Homeschool:  Parents have signed up to support the classroom and discussion on Field Trips and online resources for the year were shared.

Mountain IS: Parents met for a long range planning meeting as an opportunity for everyone to contribute ideas and start planning this year’s classroom enrichment activities and special events.


Dates to remember:

September 4: No School --Labor Day Holiday

September 7th:  Nature Academy Back to School Night

September 11th: Nature Academy 6-8 grade: (during PE period)

September 14: Parent Advisory Meeting: 3-4 pm in the Charter Fall Creek Office.

October 5 and October 12: Vision and Hearing screening

October 5: First Rehearsal for Thrill the World event 3-4:30 at the Quail Hollow Campus

October 5th: Picture Day: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

             P.S. These pictures will be taken outside for a natural background.

October 10: All Charter Play Cinder-Idol informational meeting at 3pm for students and parents. room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.

October 16: Picture retake day: (during PE period) Nature Academy 6-8 grade

October 27th:  End of Quarter 1 grading period

November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs : (time TBD)

November 10th:  No School-- Veteran’s Day

November 17: End of First Trimester

November 20th-26th:  Thanksgiving Break

December 22nd- January 7th:  Winter Break

January 25: End of first Semester



Charter News: August 8, 2017

posted Aug 14, 2017, 4:07 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


“It  is good to have an end to journey toward, but it is the journey that matters in the end.”

~ Ernest Hemingway




Dear Charter Families,


Welcome to another great school year of learning together!


School begins Monday, August 28, and on behalf of the Charter administration and extended staff, I want to welcome you to a new school year with the SLVUSD Charter programs. This will be the first Charter News that I will send to all families in every program that the Charter school represents.  It is generally sent every two weeks and is my way of sharing news pertinent to all parents (parent education, educational updates, holidays) as well as a brief update from every program so that you can get a ‘flavor’ of the other educational options this unique Charter school has to offer.   After sent, all newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


You will soon receive a welcome letter from your teacher(s) who run the program that your child(ren) are enrolled in. Our teachers are all great at keeping you informed via email on what is happening in your student’s classroom: school work, activities, and specifics on field trips and special events for your child.  They have all planned some great themes and special events for the year!


For those of you who are returning, we are so glad you are back!  For those of you who are new to the SLV Charter programs experience, I know that you will fully enjoy all the classroom learning activities, events and field trip excursions your teachers have in store for you.  Each program will indeed become almost like a second home for your child...and to you as well if you spend time supporting the classroom experience, go on the excursions, and connect with the other families whose children are learning alongside yours.  All of our programs are richer due to the participation of our parents and  it is true that each year you will  build strong relationships with fabulous teachers and fellow learners that can last far beyond the classroom school year.  


You are also on the front line in ensuring that your student is completing their school work and projects. If you ever feel the need for more help or have questions, your teacher(s) and I are only an email or call away.  Our administrative team is also happy to help you in whatever way they can.


We have two Charter offices; one on the Quail Hollow campus in Ben Lomond is where you can find Holly Thomas, our registrar, and Tarah Locke, or part-time Secretary. Our administrative office is on the Felton campus, located back behind the football field, near  the school entrance to Fall Creek.  This is where my office is located, and also where you can find Danelle Matteson, our administrative assistant.  We are the ones for you to call for everyday questions, concerns, needs you may have with your child that are beyond your teacher’s field of expertise.


Look for updates on what is happening within the Charter in our bimonthly Charter News.  Such an exciting year!


We look forward to meeting our new and returning students soon.  You are indeed a special group of families.  Until then, may you enjoy your last days of summer vacation.


~Rhonda



Powerschool.jpg

The PowerSchool Parent Portal is now open!

PLEASE NOTE: Students are not considered enrolled until the on-line registration has been completed.


You will be required to complete your annual registration before your student can start classes. Completing your student’s online registration is how we ensure that we have all updated home, health, and emergency information.


  • Returning students: the parent portal reopened on Saturday, August 5th. You may access PowerSchool Registration through the parent portal URL at https://grades.slvusd.org/public. You will then complete your student’s online registration by clicking on the PowerSchool Registration link. PLEASE NOTE that students are not considered enrolled until the online registration has been completed. ALL returning students MUST complete the annual update process each year.

  • Parents of  Charter Students new  to SLV School District will receive an email from Holly Thomas, SLV Registrar,  with your incoming student's access code, access password and instructions for completing the on-line registration process. Please expect that you will receive this email from hthomas@slvusd.org by Monday, August 14th.

  • New Charter Students who have attended a SLV School District school in the year prior to Charter enrollment should have immediate on-line registration access.  You will follow the instructions listed above for returning students. If your student's record is still showing the previously attended school in powerschool, please continue to complete the on-line registration. This information will be saved and transferred over to your 2017-18 school. No further action is needed on your part once you have completed  on-line registration.

  • Any questions about this process can be emailed to hthomas@slvud.org.

  • You may access PowerSchool Registration through the Parent Portal. The url for the Parent PowerSchool portal is: https://grades.slvusd.org/public


Immunization Records for 7th graders needed PLEASE NOTE: We are still waiting for current immunization records for many 7th grade students. Due to the passage of SB277, current filings of Personal Belief Exemptions are no longer valid for 7th grade entry. Incoming 7th grade students must  have a medical exemption  or show proof of the state required vaccinations, (usually the TDAP booster) before 7th grade entry.  The Shots for School website lists currently required vaccinations for school entry.  www.shotsforschool.org


If you are in the process of obtaining a temporary or permanent medical exemption for your student please call 336-8527, or email me so that I know you will be submitting your paperwork before school starts on 8/28/17.


This is an essential element of your child’s registration.  Your student will not be enrolled unless we have this information.


If you have further questions,  please call 336-5167 or email me at hthomas@slvusd.org.


Welcome to our new staff and teachers!

Welcome Liza Keshawarz.  Liza will be teaching Math for the Nature Academy students.  She will also be teaching math for the SLVMS. After the youngest of her three children left for college, Liz and Paul decided to make their home in the beautiful mountains of Boulder Creek and enjoy the close-knit community of caring people. She spends much of her time doing Yoga and walking in the woods and on the beach. Liz holds an MS in Mathematics Education from CSUEB as well as California Clear Teaching Credentials. Since 1992 she has taught students in elementary, middle, and high school, managed educational programs in addition to being an avid community organizer. Her unique cultural perspective has been an asset to the teams she has worked with, and students have always been the direct beneficiaries of her efforts. She has lived a rich, well-rounded life both overseas and in the States, working toward the common good has been the source of motivation in her personal and professional life.

Also joining us as our new academic counselor is  Rory McKee.  He will be joining the SLV Charter School community as our academic counselor.  Rory is currently finishing up is counseling certification and has worked with Jen Kelly, our previous counselor at the end of last year. He is a Nature Academy Alumni and is been a guest teacher for them for years. It is great to have him on board as he knows our programs and is excited to join the CRHS team and explore how he can support our student’s College and Career aspirations.


John Reed fundraiser This Friday  8/11 6-8 pm @ SLV pool

Please join us for a swim/pizza party for John Reed and his family. John was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer this past June, he is 16 years old. John is a member of our community and has played on the SLVHS football team since his freshman year.

With your $10.00 donation, you will receive two hours of swimming and a piece of pizza and salad. All of the proceeds will go to John and his family.

The fundraiser is being organized by the SLVHS football team, and sponsored by the SLVHS Athletic Boosters and SLVUSD. Please contact Jennifer Kanter if you would like to help. We look forward        to seeing you there. If you are unable to attend, you can make a donation at:https://www.gofundme.com/jonathanreed.  Go Team!


2017 Solar Eclipse of a lifetime: NASA has created a website with a wealth of great information for those of you who would like to delve deeper into this special event. https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/  Live video streams of the August 21 total solar eclipse, from NASA Television and locations across the country, will be available on this page. https://www.nasa.gov/eclipselive

Many of our teachers have been looking forward to viewing this event for quite a long time! Many of our families are taking the trek to a location where they can experience the total eclipse and not just a partial glimpse. I know of two of our families who will be in Rexburg Idaho. One of our teachers will be in  Silver Falls State Park in Oregon. I am sure there are many more who have planned to travel someplace with family or friends to experience this first hand.  We’ll look forward to hearing their stories and seeing their pictures when school starts up!


 😀 Put your smiles on and brush your hair, Charter picture days are coming soon! More information will be sent closer to the picture dates.

  • September 11th: Nature Academy 6-8 grade: (during PE period)

  • October 5th: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

  • October 16: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 9th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)


CAFETERIA NEWS: Breakfast is $2.50 and Lunch $3.50. Application for free and reduced lunch can be found on the SLVUSD Nutrition Webpage: http://slvusdcafe.com/


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

CRHS: Monday, August 28 1st day of recorded homeschooling for the Fall semester.

Orientation for 11/12th-grade students: Friday August 25 starting at 10:00 am  *Breakfast of juice, fruit, muffins, and bagels at 9:30 am

Orientation for 9/10th-grade students: Monday, August 28 starting at 10:00 am  *Breakfast of juice, fruit, muffins, and bagels at 9:30 am

CRMS: Sunday, August 27, 4-7pm. Beginning of the Year Kick-Off Potluck at the Trowbridge Home in Bonny Doon. Please email mreynolds@slvusd.org for more information.

Monday, August 28, 10am-12pm. Parent Orientation Meeting at the CRMS Classroom.  Parents, please bring your laptop (and login information) and a contribution to help support JT & John.  There will be resources and benchmark assessments available for you to take home to begin your homeschooling year. 1st day of recorded homeschooling for the Fall semester.

Friday, Sep. 1 from 11-2: All Homeschool Charter Beach Day at Twin Lakes Beach Students and parents from all of our homeschool charter program gather for some fun in the sun!

Wednesday, September 27, 9:30am-2:00pm. First Day of Classes at CRMS.

Nature Academy: Monday, August 28: first day of school. It will be an Early Release Bell Schedule.

All grades will be going on a big hike all together in sometime in September. Annual Ropes course will also be in September.  Look for their email soon for more details.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): Monday, Aug. 28: 9:00-2:30 First School Day and QHIA Open House/Potluck

Tuesday, Aug. 28-Thursday, Aug. 31: All students attend all day 9-2:30

Friday, Sep. 1 from 11-2: All Homeschool Charter Beach Day at Twin Lakes Beach

Students and parents from all of our homeschool charter program gather for some fun in the sun!

Wednesday, Sep. 13: Character Day http://www.letitripple.org/character-day/

Monday, Sep. 18 at 11:30: Ramayana-The Indian Epic at Montalvo Arts Center. First field trip.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Theme for this next year is Adventures Through Literature.

Monday, August 28:   10:00am-11:00am: New Family Orientation 11:00am-1:00pm: Open House for New and Returning Families!  First day of recorded homeschooling for the Fall semester.

Friday, Sep. 1 from 11-2: All Homeschool Charter Beach Day at Twin Lakes Beach

Students and parents from all of our homeschool charter program gather for some fun in the sun!

Tuesday, September 19th  - Thursday, September 21st: Beginning of the Year Camping Trip New Brighton State Beach

Fall Creek Homeschool:  Theme for the year:  Our Watershed.

Monday, August 28, 11:30 am -1 pm. We will have a picnic and play time at Fall Creek play yard to see everyone after the summer break and to meet new families. We will also sign up for our semester planning meetings at the picnic.

Friday, Sep. 1 from 11-2: All Homeschool Charter Beach Day at Twin Lakes Beach Students and parents from all of our homeschool charter program gather for some fun in the sun!

Mountain IS:Theme for the Year:  "HANDS"-ON Learning" From sign language to sculpture, using our hands to create, manipulate and express ourselves creatively.

Monday, August 28th: First day to start recording in your learning logs.

Tuesday, August 29th: 12:00-2:00 We will have a picnic and play time at the Mountain School Creek to see everyone after the summer break and to meet our new families.   If you are unfamiliar with the trail that leads us to this amazing Mountain School resource, you are welcome to join me. I will head down from the classroom at 12:00. In addition, our fabulous new instructional assistant Beth and I will be planning and prepping in the classroom from 9-12 so feel free to stop by to pick up learning logs and sign up for our September planning meetings.

Friday, Sep. 1 from 11-2: All Homeschool Charter Beach Day at Twin Lakes Beach Students and parents from all of our homeschool charter program gather for some fun in the sun!






Charter News: June 9

posted Jun 12, 2017, 5:10 PM by Rhonda Schlosser

 

"And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer."

—F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

 

 

 

Dear Charter Families,

 

Well, the school year is officially over!  Thank you so much for sharing your children with us, for sharing your dedication in working with your children and in our programs to support their growth.

 

School begins again on August 28th.  We will be sending you an email in early August to remind you to update your contact information through PowerSchool, beginning August 5th.  This coming school year, students will not be able to start participation in their programs until that information has been submitted.  This registration gives us the updated information we need for your child’s health and emergency contacts, among other things. Please register as soon as you get the email reminder, try not to procrastinate.  We will be in the office starting August 7, available if you have any questions or problems when completing your child’s enrollment.

 

Holly, Danelle, and I will be in the office Monday - Thursday until June 23.  We will reopen the week of August 7, open Monday -Thursday until the week of August 28 when school begins again.

 

May your summer hold every form of fun and relaxation that you can muster. And don’t forget to find ways to laugh, hug, read and play!

 

~Rhonda


Charter Parent Survey:  I am asking one last time to please take the time to fill out our annual survey.  We want to hear how we are doing every year.  Right now we have received fewer responses than we have had in the past several years.  This can mean that everyone is happy with what we are doing, very unhappy, or simply not caring enough to take the time.  This survey gives us a view of progress over the years. And it can show us areas for growth and change as well.

PLEASE TAKE THE TIME.  PLEASE GIVE US YOUR INPUT. WE WANT TO HEAR YOUR COMMENTS.   

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/16-17Charter


Comings and goings: We are so sorry to have to say goodbye to our Nature Academy math teacher, Tamar Ragir.  Though she was with us but a year, she engaged the students in ways that kept them thinking, learning, and asking questions that led them deeper in their mathematical understanding.  We wish her the best at her new school.

 

Welcome to Liz Keshawarz. I am happy to have been able to hire Liz to join the Charter team of math teachers.  Here is a brief Bio:  After the youngest of her three children left for college, Liz and Paul decided to make their home in the beautiful mountains of Boulder Creek and enjoy the close-knit community of caring people. She spends much of her time doing Yoga and walking in the woods and on the beach.

Liz holds an MS in Mathematics Education from CSUEB as well as California Clear Teaching Credentials. Since 1992 she has taught students in elementary, middle, and high school, managed educational programs in addition to being an avid community organizer. Her unique cultural perspective has been an asset to the teams she has worked with, and students have always been the direct beneficiaries of her efforts. She has lived a rich, well-rounded life both overseas and in the States, working toward the common good has been the source of motivation in her personal and professional life.  


Community News: Highway 9/San Lorenzo Valley Transportation Corridor Plan Survey - Online

Complete the survey to share your ideas on how to make it safer and easier for everyone to get around San Lorenzo Valley, whether you are walking, biking, driving, looking for a ride, or taking transit.

https://sccrtc-slv.metroquest.com

The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC), Caltrans, County of Santa Cruz, and Santa Cruz METRO need your help preparing a Highway 9/San Lorenzo Valley transportation corridor plan. Share your vision for Highway 9 and participate in the development of this action plan to prioritize transportation projects and services. Measure D, which was approved by voters in November 2016, includes $10 million specifically earmarked for transportation projects along the Highway 9 corridor. For more information: visit www.sccrtc.org/slv, contact the RTC at 831-460-3200 or info@sccrtc.org.


Student Work: In past years we have had a section of our Charter News that was devoted to selected pieces of student work for our various programs.  Each program does so many fabulous things, each has such unique ways for the students’ talents to shine, that oftentimes I think it is good to share examples to the broader audience of Charter Families. We thought we’d whet your appetite with a few writing samples from the Nature Academy’s 7-8th grade Writer’s Workshop unit.  These are pieces that the students agreed to share in our Newsletter. Selected Writing Workshop Pieces from Nature Academy Students This may be a tradition that we readopt next year. Please tell me what you think!


CHARTER SCHOOL REGISTRATION / INFORMATION FOR 2017-2018 ENROLLMENT

The SLVUSD Charter School uses PowerSchool Registration, an online platform for completing student registration. We have outlined below the requirements for our Returning students, as well as when to access the web-link to complete the online registration process.

 

Our on-line registration for next year cannot be completed until Powerschool reopens on August 5. (Between now and then the District Team needs to complete the work of closing the current school year and setting up for the new school year.) Detailed communication regarding registration is posted or will be posted on the district website as well as at each respective school's website.  

 

There will be a reminder going out around 8/1/17 regarding signing in to PowerSchool to register your student(s). You may sign in as early as 8/5/17 to complete and confirm the student/family information, along with emergency contact information, and permissions at that time for 2017-18 school year.

 

RETURNING STUDENTS: We need your most current information in the event of an emergency! You will be required to complete your annual registration (information update and Parent Permissions) before you can attend classes.

PLEASE NOTE: The Parent Portal will be closed between July 1 and August 4. The Parent Portal will reopen on August 5, 2017.

PowerSchool Registration Window & Parent Portal:

The PowerSchool Parent Portal will re-open on Saturday, August 5.  You may access PowerSchool Registration through the Parent Portal URL:  https://grades.slvusd.org/public

 

Once you have created your PowerSchool Parent account, you will then complete your student’s on-line registration by clicking on the “PowerSchool Registration” link. Students are not considered enrolled until the on-line registration has been completed.  PLEASE NOTE: Students will need to be fully enrolled before they begin classes next year.


Incoming 7th-grade immunizations: All incoming 7th graders are required to proof of an adolescent whooping cough booster (called TDap) to be able to enter school in the Fall.  If your child’s immunizations are up to date, please bring a copy to the office so we can check them off the list.  If you have not received those immunizations, please contact your doctor to get shots updated over the summer.  No 7th grader can start school with proper immunization records.  Please contact our district nurse, Sarah Dahlen, at 335-4452 if you have questions.


Summer Reading Programs:  Bookshop Santa Cruz: Our popular summer reading program for young readers (going into grades K-12) will run June 1st through September 6th this year. We're challenging kids to read 6 books--at least 3 from our recommended reading list (see below) and up to 3 of their choice. Complete the challenge and not only will you have read some terrific books, but you'll earn excellent rewards: A $5 Bookshop gift card, a free scoop from the Penny Ice Creamery, a free slice from Pizza My Heart, and a special prize from the Santa Cruz Warriors!       How to get started: Come to Bookshop Santa Cruz to pick up a summer reading bookmark for your age level or download one of the pdfs listed below starting on Monday, May 15th. You are going to want to hang onto this because it's also your reading tracking form that you're going to use all summer and turn back into us before school starts. Pick out your first book and start reading!  All summer reading books are on display at Bookshop Santa Cruz.  bookshopsantacruz.com/summer-reading-program. How to complete the challenge: Just bring back your filled out bookmark, making sure to note your name, age, and school before turning it in, by September 5th. Then you will get to collect your rewards and proudly post your name on our Summer Reading wall.  Extra bonus: The school that has the most students participate will also get a gift certificate to buy new books for their school library!



Charter News: June 2, 2017

posted Jun 2, 2017, 5:36 PM by Rhonda Schlosser



Like a welcome summer rain, humor may suddenly cleanse and cool the earth, the air and you.

~Langston Hughes




Dear Charter Families,


Next Thursday is the last school day; summer officially will begin!!  These last weeks have had such beautiful and touching program celebrations and advancement ceremonies, with more planned for next week.  Each celebration is so personal, each student known so well by their teachers and peers; each event will become such a heartwarming memory.  Some activities I have missed but I have had the pleasure of attending;

  • Fall Creek Homeschool’s End of Year celebration which included sharing their Jar of Good Deed’s.

  • Quail Hollow Homeschool had their celebration with their older students walking through the ’gateway’ while teachers and parents honored their individual uniqueness.

  • Quail Hollow Integrated Arts had their very first wonderful advancement ceremony where new honor awards and VAPA inspired presentations began traditions for the years to come.

  • Mountain IS had an intimate and loving retirement party for founding teacher Maria Fahrner.

  • Nature Academy’s 6th-grade class had a lovely volunteer tea party held in their garden.

  • And today ended with our Coast Redwood High School graduation for our 18 seniors held in the beautiful Redwood Amphitheater, with music and speeches and each student being honored by their teachers as they received their diplomas.


Kudos go out to the fantastic teachers once again who go the extra mile every year to make the end of year so special for their students.  Next week will be filled with many more special events and advancement celebrations.  I can’t wait!


Please read on for some very important information regarding registration for next year’s enrollment as well as some interesting tips for your summer.


~Rhonda


CHARTER SCHOOL REGISTRATION / INFORMATION FOR 2017-2018 ENROLLMENT

The SLVUSD Charter School uses PowerSchool Registration, an online platform for completing student registration. We have outlined below the requirements for our Returning students, as well as when to access the web-link to complete the online registration process.


RETURNING STUDENTS: We need your most current information in the event of an emergency! You will be required to complete your annual registration (information update and Parent Permissions) before you can attend classes.

PLEASE NOTE: The Parent Portal will be closed between July 1 and August 4. The Parent Portal will reopen on August 5, 2017.

PowerSchool Registration Window & Parent Portal:

The PowerSchool Parent Portal will re-open on Saturday, August 5.  You may access PowerSchool Registration through the Parent Portal URL:  https://grades.slvusd.org/public


Once you have created your PowerSchool Parent account, you will then complete your student’s on-line registration by clicking on the “PowerSchool Registration” link. Students are not considered enrolled until the on-line registration has been completed.  PLEASE NOTE: Students will need to be fully enrolled before they begin classes next year.


Bell Schedule next year: Teacher collaboration

Next year, SLVMS and SLVHS will move to “Early Out” days instead of having “Late Start” days. School will start at 8:00 and release at 1:40 on Early Release Mondays, and 2:25 on other days of the week.  This scheduling will impact our families in the Nature Academy as well as some of the CRMS and CRHS students. A more detailed bell schedule will be sent later.  


These “Early Out days” allow for our teachers to collaborate together on how best to support their students.  This collaboration time is very important for our teachers and allows them time to review information and data and make any changes to their plans in order to reach each student the best they can.


Screen Time Awareness:  From our Student Services department

Dear Parents and Guardians,

As summer comes upon us and students have more leisure time on their hands, we would like you to consider placing some guidelines around student screen time.


According to the Council on Communications and Media (www.aap.org), increased screen time has a negative effect on children.   The major areas that may be impacted are:

  • Sleep: Technology should be turned off at least 30 minutes before bedtime in order to allow your child’s brain some time to settle down from the bright lights of screens and the stimulation of playing with electronics.  Send tablets, phones, and computers to bed early and keep them outside of your child’s bedroom so they won’t be tempted to play.

  • Attention Span: a 2015 study by the Microsoft Corporation found that technology interfered with the ability to stay focused and that the human attention span has reduced from 12 seconds to 8 seconds since the year 2000.   Further, according to a study published in the Journal of Pediatrics in 2011, children and adults who were exposed to more screen time had a higher rate of diagnosed attention span disorders.  The fragmented, action-packed nature of electronic devices contributes to the problem.

  • Learning: While technology puts a world of information at our fingertips, the Internet cannot replace human interaction.  Too much screen-time can blunt imagination and resourcefulness, as well as impact the ability to build new memory.  It is also important to think about what you do not want your children to learn without the benefit of adult support and discussion and filter their Internet use accordingly.

  • Mental and Physical Health: Overuse of screen time is linked to higher rates of depression, anxiety, and obesity.

  • Privacy: Children are at risk of having their privacy compromised and/or being exposed to online predators. Talk to your children about internet safety.  Commonsensemedia.org has many helpful ideas for building skills for digital citizenship.


To promote a healthy balance between media use and other activities, The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends developing a Family Media Plan that addresses the health, education and entertainment needs of each child, in addition to needs of the family as a whole.   You can get started on your own plan here: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/media/Pages/default.aspx


For additional tips on media use, please see below.  

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends the following:

Media Use Plan Tips:

  • Screens should be kept out of kids' bedrooms.  Put in place a "media curfew" at mealtime and bedtime, putting all devices away or plugging them into a charging station for the night.

  • Excessive media use has been associated with obesity, lack of sleep, school problems, aggression and other behavior issues. Limit entertainment screen time to less than one or two hours per day.

  • For children under 2, substitute unstructured play and human interaction for screen time. The opportunity to think creatively, problem solve and develop reasoning and motor skills is more valuable for the developing brain than passive media intake.

  • Take an active role in your children's media education by co-viewing programs with them and discussing values.

  • Look for media choices that are educational, or teach good values -- such as empathy, racial and ethnic tolerance. Choose programming that models good interpersonal skills for children to emulate.

  • Be firm about not viewing content that is not age appropriate: sex, drugs, violence, etc. Movie and TV ratings exist for a reason, and online movie reviews also can help parents to stick to their rules.

  • The Internet can be a wonderful place for learning. But it also is a place where kids can run into trouble. Keep the computer in a public part of your home, so you can check on what your kids are doing online and how much time they are spending there.

  • Discuss with your children that every place they go on the Internet may be "remembered," and comments they make will stay there indefinitely. Impress upon them that they are leaving behind a "digital footprint." They should not take actions online that they would not want to be on the record for a very long time.

  • Become familiar with popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. You may consider having your own profile on the social media sites your children use. By "friending" your kids, you can monitor their online presence. Pre-teens should not have accounts on social media sites. If you have young children, you can create accounts on sites that are designed specifically for kids their age.

  • Talk to them about being good "digital citizens," and discuss the serious consequences of online bullying. If your child is the victim of cyberbullying, it is important to take action with the other parents and the school if appropriate. Attend to children's and teens' mental health needs promptly if they are being bullied online, and consider separating them from the social media platforms where bullying occurs.

  • Make sure kids of all ages know that it is not appropriate or smart to send or receive pictures of people without clothing, or sexy text messages, no matter whether they are texting friends or strangers.

  • If you're unsure of the quality of the "media diet" in your household, consult with your children's pediatrician on what your kids are viewing, how much time they are spending with media, and privacy and safety issues associated with social media and Internet use.

P.S.  If you have the time, please explore the website Common Sense Media for more great tips. https://www.commonsensemedia.org/



Summer Reading Programs:
 Bookshop Santa Cruz: Our popular summer reading program for young readers (going into grades K-12) will run June 1st through September 6th this year. We're challenging kids to read 6 books--at least 3 from our recommended reading list (see below) and up to 3 of their choice. Complete the challenge and not only will you have read some terrific books, but you'll earn excellent rewards: A $5 Bookshop gift card, a free scoop from the Penny Ice Creamery, a free slice from Pizza My Heart, and a special prize from the Santa Cruz Warriors!       How to get started: Come to Bookshop Santa Cruz to pick up a summer reading bookmark for your age level or download one of the pdfs listed below starting on Monday, May 15th. You are going to want to hang onto this because it's also your reading tracking form that you're going to use all summer and turn back into us before school starts. Pick out your first book and start reading!  All summer reading books are on display at Bookshop Santa Cruz.  bookshopsantacruz.com/summer-reading-program. How to complete the challenge: Just bring back your filled out bookmark, making sure to note your name, age, and school before turning it in, by September 5th. Then you will get to collect your rewards and proudly post your name on our Summer Reading wall.  Extra bonus: The school that has the most students participate will also get a gift certificate to buy new books for their school library!



DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)
  • June 8th:  Last day of school

  • The Charter School offices will be closed for the month of July and will re-open the first week in August.  

Charter News: May 26, 2017

posted May 29, 2017, 10:53 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


I would rather be remembered by a song than by a victory.

-Alexander Smith




Dear Charter Families,


I know it is the end of the year and everyone is racing to the end of school so this Charter News is short!

Please read on for an article from Counselor Jen, accolades for our Charter school, Highway 9 meeting reminder, Flu virus, celebration/graduation dates.


Have a fabulous Memorial Day weekend.


~Rhonda

______________________________________________________________________

Notes From Our Counselor Jen Sims: It’s the Relationship

Every once in awhile I stop and say to myself,  “It’s the relationship, stupid!”

Normally I am not a fan of name calling or shaming, but this is what my mentor used to say to me with an affectionate smile back when I was a struggling new therapist.   She said it when I got wrapped up in the need for evidence-based or results driven therapeutic techniques.  She said it when I would grumble and whine, “I’m not sure what my clients want from me?!?”  She said it when I took things too personally and forgot what I was supposed to be doing, and that what we are really here for is the relationship…come on, don’t be stupid.   

"It’s the relationship.  I can’t say that enough.  It’s the relationship.  As the school year draws to a close and I reflect on my work here over the past two years, it feels more true than ever that nothing that I do matters as much as the relationships I cultivate with the students, parents, teachers and staff at the charter school.  And nothing will change, get better or heal without the relationships that you have with each other.



Twenty years ago, there was a huge research project called The ACE study.  ACE stands for adverse childhood experiences – things like abuse, parental addiction and mental health, divorce and loss - and it turns out that the more you have of them, the more at risk you are for poor physical and emotional health as you age.  The tagline for the ACE study is ‘Turning Gold into Lead”, and those with the highest number of adverse experiences actually face early death.  One mitigating factor was discovered to make a difference, however, and that was the presence of a healing relationship.  Not multiple relationships; just one where you feel truly seen and heard.  This is all it takes to make the difference between life and death.

There’s no magic around health and healing.  It’s just the relationship.

What are the components of a healing relationship?  I think it’s pretty simple.  Children need relationships that are real, clean, clear and honest.   If you are working on a relationship with a young person, you are already doing what it takes.  If you are working on your relationship with yourself so that you can make sure you are being real, clean, clear and honest, then you are already doing what it takes.   Even if it feels like sometimes you are just being that potted plant parent, or the teacher who keeps saying good morning to a cranky student who barely responds, or if you’re wondering if that last ‘serious talk’ had any impact at all, or, if you are like me and felt so tired one day that you just played hide and seek with your kids rather than do anything serious at all, you are doing what it takes.

My most successful and positive interventions are with students that I have spent time getting to know and allowed to get to know me.  When the relationships in children’s lives improve, I notice their ability to focus and achieve in school dramatically increases.  Their decision-making gets better.  It goes on and on from there, and it doesn’t have to be hard!  When you’re in a jam just remember, it’s the relationship (but I won’t call you stupid).

Read more about the CDC-Kaiser ACE study here:  https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/acestudy/about.html

Read more about the potted plant parent here: https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/14/well/family/what-do-teenagers-want-potted-plant-parents.html?_r=0

Teach your child about co-dependency and how to avoid it:

http://oureverydaylife.com/can-teach-children-not-codependent-13778.html

__________________________________________________________________________

Charter School received Honor Roll award

Our school was chosen by Educational Results Partnership (ERP) and the Campaign for Business and Education Excellence (CBEE) as a 2016 California Honor Roll recipient!


“The California Honor Roll is part of a national effort known for its extensive and rigorous analysis of student achievement in public schools. Our school stood above other schools in the state because of success in getting students to grade level achievement and beyond.


This year, the Honor Roll includes 1,866 public K-8 and high schools that are recognized for demonstrating consistently high levels of student academic achievement, improvement in achievement over time, and reduction in achievement gaps.


We did not apply for this award (they found us!) and it is a great honor to have been chosen. We will be featured on the Honor Roll website and a banner has been designed for us to hang proudly at our school.”


On behalf of our entire school community I want to say congratulations to you and your kids!

__________________________________________________________________________

WASC Accreditation: Let’s celebrate our WASC Accreditation!!

We have officially received our WASC Accreditation through June 30, 2021!!!

______________________________________________________________________

Highway 9/San Lorenzo Valley Transportation Corridor Plan Open House

When: Wednesday, May 31, 2017; 5:00-7:00 pm (presentation at 6pm)

Where: Felton Community Hall (6191 Hwy 9, Felton)

What: Come share your ideas on how to make it safer and easier for everyone to get around San Lorenzo Valley, whether you are walking, biking, driving, looking for a ride, or taking transit. The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC), Caltrans, County of Santa Cruz, and Santa Cruz METRO need your help preparing a Highway 9/San Lorenzo Valley transportation corridor plan. Share your vision for Highway 9, learn about upcoming projects, and participate in development of this action plan to prioritize transportation projects and services. Measure D, which was approved by voters in November 2016, includes $10 million specifically earmarked for transportation projects along the Highway 9 corridor. For more information: visit www.sccrtc.org/slv, contact the RTC at 831-460-3200 or info@sccrtc.org.

______________________________________________________________________

A Message from the SLVUSD School Nurse on Norovirus

The Santa Cruz County school nurses met this week with the public health officer for Santa Cruz County about the Norovirus outbreak. Although we did have an outbreak in our valley, it was not our students who were at the camp at that time.


It has been recommended that we send any student with stomach pain, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea home and require 48 hours symptom-free before returning to school.


Norovirus in a healthy adult lasts 1-3 days, causing vomiting, diarrhea, and sometimes fever. Often people think it's food poisoning and the biggest risk is dehydration. There are over 1,200 cases in Yolo County schools, and 200 cases San Jose schools. We currently do not have any known cases in our schools and would like to keep it that way.


Please keep your child home if he or she is displaying these symptoms.

https://www.cdc.gov/norovirus/about/symptoms.html

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What’s Going on in Our Charter School? ..little snippets from some of our programs.

All of our programs are busy either coming back from or going out on their last special excursions.  End of year yearbooks are completed, celebrations of advancements and graduations are underway.  

  • 8 more days of school when we get back.


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • May 29th:  No School-- Memorial Day

  • June 1: Quail Hollow Integrated Arts 8th grade advancement ceremony & program celebration -QH Multipurpose Rm Classroom-12:30

  • June 2: Coast Redwood HS -12th grade Graduation -Fall Creek Amphitheater  -12:30

  • June 6: Coast Redwood MS 8th grade advancement ceremony & program celebration -Trowbridge Residence -3-6 pm

  • June 7th:  8th grade advancement ceremony--  SLVHS football field-- 11 AM

  • June 8th:  Nature Academy 8th grade advancement ceremony & program celebration -Fall Creek Amphitheater -10:00 am

  • June 8th:  Last day of school


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