Tuesday, September 13, 2011

MPA Newsletter, 9/8/2011

Morning mayhem – or at least that’s what the traffic situation has been around MPA this past week.  In order to make sure cars waiting to drop off students aren’t backing up traffic on the streets surrounding the school, please follow the same traffic pattern in the morning that we use in the afternoons.  Using all of the lanes in the parking lot as a waiting area will help keep all of our students (and cars!) safer.  And please make sure that your child is ready to exit the car by the time you reach the front of the line – awake(!), bags gathered, wearing coat and shoes/boots, etc.  Thanks for helping us make arrival run more smoothly!

Hungry children don’t learn well … which is why we want to make sure your child has enough time to finish their lunch each day.    Please keep in mind that children who can’t open their own lunch containers will end up having less time to eat because they have to wait for help from a volunteer.  The lunchtime volunteers have milk to distribute, messes to clean up, and bathroom trips to monitor – and with only two hands per person, it’s difficult to get to all the pudding cups and Go-Gurts in a timely manner.  Items that cause the most problems for younger children include juice pouches, yogurt tubes, pudding cups, and individual fruit cups (which are particularly sticky when they spill).   Many children have an easier time opening Ziplock-type bags, reusable plastic containers and water bottles.  We've also spent a lot of time distributing napkins and utensils, items which could easily be packed by parents.  If you could please keep this in mind when you pack your child’s lunch, we’ll all be able to enjoy a more leisurely lunch break.  Thanks for your help!

Volunteers needed immediately in the following areas:
  • Electives, especially for Kindergarten and Friday classes for middle school
  • Two additional people to help with morning arrival, unloading students from cars and making sure kids get off the buses and into the school
  • Two or three additional people to help with lunch and recess, especially on Wednesdays.
Contact Connie Lindemann if you can help.  connie.lindemann@menloparkacademy.com

Quick reminder – the first volunteer team meetings are tonight at 6:30 If you’ve already signed up for a team online, come in to school to meet your teammates and brainstorm projects.  If you haven’t signed up for a team yet, come in to learn more about the teams and projects to help you make an informed decision.  Volunteers are an important part of the MPA experience – so get involved!  Also, we were able to get a break on the price of BCI checks performed at the meeting – they will now cost $43.10 That’s a good deal, so please consider getting your BCI completed tonight (if you haven’t already).

There’s still time to order official MPA spirit gear We’ve arranged with Ackmera Identiy Partners to offer a variety of shirts, jackets, hats and scarves in adult and youth sizes, all embroidered with the MPA logo.  Order forms were sent home in the Thursday folder last week.  Submit your order form by September 14th for delivery by September 30th

Calling all parents of boys!  Cub Scout Pack 110 will be holding an organizational meeting Tuesday, September 13th, at 6:30pm in the MPA gym.  This is a planning meeting for the parents of current and prospective Cub Scouts in grades 1-5 (ages 6-10).  Come learn how your son can participate, and how you can get involved.  

What can you expect your child to cover in this year’s curriculum?  Want to know more about this “Singapore Math” you keep hearing mentioned?  What the heck is a “Responsive Classroom,” and why do we need them at MPA?  These questions and more will be answered during Curriculum Night, September 22th at 6:30pm More details to come – but make sure to set the date aside on your calendar!

Several parents have asked about what after-school activities the school will be offering this year.  Unfortunately, space limitations make it difficult to host activities directly after school without interfering with teachers’ classrooms and work time Edison Club, our after school care program, will periodically offer a variety of enrichment activities as part of their schedule.   Otherwise, after-school clubs may be offered by some teachers on a limited basis as their schedules permit.  We will send home information about these opportunities as they arise.  The Tri-C Arts Prep Program offers many classes and gives MPA students a discounted rate.  A separate email with all their offerings and registration information will be sent out on Friday 9/9/11.

Menlo Park Academy will once again be offering violin classes as an elective during the school day Musicians of all ages and abilities are welcome!  See the attached form for information and fee schedules.  You can also register online at http://www.ardismusic.com/stringprograms/menloparkacademy.html .

Calendar highlights:
  • Sept. 8 (Thursday) – Volunteer Team meeting, MPA gym, 6:30 pm; BCI checks available from 5:30-7:30pm in the gym
  • Sept. 13 (Tuesday) – Cub Scout organizational meeting, MPA gym, 6:30 pm
  • Sept. 14 (Wednesday) – Order forms for MPA spirit wear due
  • Sept. 22 (Thursday) – Curriculum night at MPA, beginning at 6:30 pm (details to follow)

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