Wednesday, March 28, 2012

MPA Newsletter 3/28/2012

We'd like to send some special recognition to the families of students in Mrs. Timko's Kindergarten class- they have the distinct honor of being the only class to have no absences or tardy students for six days in a row!  We all know how hard it is to keep everyone healthy and on-time this time of year, so we know what an achievement this actually is.  Way to go!


Student Information

The 1st grade, 5th grade & the 3 middle school Gardening Elective students who missed hot dog day last week won't miss out.  We will be serving their hot dogs on Thursday, March 29th.  Bon Appetit!

The school held a state-mandated tornado drill this morning.  The students behaved well, moving to the safer locations within the school quickly and quietly.  I was there to see the drill, and I've never seen that many K-2nd graders be so quiet in my life!  There will be more tornado drills in the future, so don't be surprised to hear about them from your students in the coming months.

Has your child made use of any of our Emergency Replacement Lunches?  Please remember that these lunches are for kids who forgot to bring a lunch - not for kids whose parents just don't feel like packing a lunch that day.  The school does not make any profit on the sale of the lunches, and currently we have to use funds from other school areas to make up the almost $150 we are missing because parents haven't paid for the lunches their children have used.  Please contact Lynn.Wilson@MenloParkAcademy.com if you need to pay the school for replacement lunches - she'll be happy to help you figure out how much you owe.  Thanks for your help with this!

Our art teacher Mrs. Padrutt is in need of the following supplies: styrofoam egg cartons, newspaper, and small (6-8 ounce) plastic yogurt containers.  If you can send these items in between now and the end of April, she'd greatly appreciate it.

MPA is having a snack sale during lunch periods to benefit the students who will be traveling to Washington, D.C. later this spring.  Prices range from $0.25 to $2 for chips, granola bars and candy.  Keep in mind that the last snack sale sold out quickly, so students should bring in money soon if they'd like to participate.
 
Congratulations to the team of Ojas Nadkarni and Brian Mingus, who took third place this past weekend at the BEST Medicine science fair in Akron with their project using a hydraulic pump to help people in wheelchairs. The third place in this fair is much more impressive than at CONSEF because at the BEST Medicine fair, they give out only one first, one second and one third place. No one else won anything (no honorable mentions, etc.) so the boys were in fact the third best in their category. At the other science fairs, there were several winners at each of the various levels.  Plus, the boys won a cash prize for this competition!  Congratulations, guys!

Here we go Wizards, here we go!  The MPA boys' spring basketball team won their first game of the year this past weekend.  Awesome game, boys - let's keep up that undefeated record!

Congratulations to sixth grader Marshall Monnette, who took the ACT in February.  His composite score was 28, which places him in the 90th percentile.  He also scored a 34 on the Science section, which places him in the 99th percentile.  This is the same test given to high school juniors and seniors, so placing that high is quite an accomplishment.  Way to go, Marshall!  

Dr. Bouchard asked me to share a couple clarifications on the school's policy on the use of electronic devices (game systems, iAnything, phones, etc.):
  • Use of electronic devices in classrooms (including during indoor recess) is only allowed with specific permission from the teacher.
  • Electronic devices may NOT be used during outside recess.
  • Telephones may only be used at the end of the day, not during school hours.
  • The school will not be held responsible for any damage or loss that occurs to electronic devices that are brought to school.
We hope this clears up any questions you have about the policy.  If not, feel free to contact Lorraine.Bouchard@MenloParkAcademy.com directly for more information.

Menlo Park Academy will again be having the ARTS FAIR & ICE CREAM SOCIAL on April 22, 2012 from 2:00-3:30 p.m.   Like last year, this event is FREE and is not a fundraiser!  Instead, it is a celebration and show case of the many talents of our MPA students.   Like last year, there will be an opportunity to play an instrument, sing, perform a dance or poem, or act out a famous historical character as a “wax figure”.  Students can perform individually or in a group.  In the next few weeks, your children will be receiving more information about the event and a sign-up sheet will be available soon.  Please have your child begin to think about how they would like to participate in this exciting event!  In addition, many of your children’s beautiful works of art will be on display throughout the building for you to enjoy and there will be a fun craft for the children to make and take home.  At the end of the event, we will celebrate with a yummy ice cream treat!  Check out the attached flyer for more information on this fun event.

Thanks go out to the Hamilton family, who has agreed to loan the school a cartop carrier.  We're hoping someone can loan the school one more cartop luggage carrier to use for the Middle School trip to Washington, D.C.  We'd need to use them from April 30-May 4.  If you have a set the school can use, please contact Lynn.Wilson@MenloParkAcademy.com and let her know.  Thanks!

Monday, May 7th, will be the day for candid and group photos for the yearbook.  If your child participates in a club, team, or other MPA organization, check with the group leader for information on when and where the photo will be done.  This information will be available in a few weeks.



Development Information

Mmmm, Mmmm, Good:  Thanks to the combined efforts of our parents collecting and submitting Campbell's points, our current balance is 21,787 points.  Campbell's points do not expire and we can roll them over from year to year, so 21,000 points is a great start towards some of the items in the Campbell's points catalog.  Thanks for your diligence in sending these in - keep up the good work!

Ahem:  Have you paid what you pledged to the MPA Annual Fund?  Checks made payable to MPA (with Annual Fund in the note section) can be sent to Tanya Reno via Thursday folders or any other school communications.  Please make sure that it's obvious who the check is from so we can properly credit your family for the donation.  And it's not too late to pledge if you haven't already - every dollar (and family participating!) counts!  Thanks for your support!

Hut, 2, 3, 4: Thursday, April 5th, will be our annual MPA Walk-A-Thon.  Please remember that unlike last year, all Walk-A-Thon donations must be collected before the event and are due Wednesday, April 4th. Students who raise $50 or more will receive a special edition MPA t-shirt.  Check out the attached documents for more information on the event and a copy of the pledge sheet (just in case you filled up the one that went home last week).  So grab those sneakers (and checkbooks) and let's get walking!  If you are interested in volunteering for this event, please contact Kay O'Donnell at ckodonnell207@roadrunner.com to sign up.

Are you smarter than an MPA student?  Quiz Night is coming up - time to start getting together your team of eight adults to tackle our trivia challenges.  The event is Saturday, April 28th, at Brennan's (13000 Triskett Road).  Tickets are $40 per person and include hot and cold appetizers, non-alcoholic beverages, dessert, and one door prize ticket.  There will be cash prizes for members of the winning team.  And don't worry if you don't have enough people for a team - we'll be happy to help form a team for you. 

Volunteer Information

Walk this way:  We're looking for volunteers to help with the Walk-A-Thon on Thursday, April 5th.  We'll need folks to help corral the kids (we're walking outside, weather permitting), do recordkeeping, and so on.  Contact Kay O'Donnell at ckodonnell207@roadrunner.com if you'd like to help out.

Binding contract: We're looking for some volunteers to help assemble and bind the books our students have prepared for the Young Author's program.  We'll be working on this the entire week of April 30th, so if you're available to come in to school and help with it any time during that week, please contact heather.syracuse@hotmail.com.  We'll need someone to head up the project, as well as at least two volunteers per day during that week.  And if anyone has an extra binding machine we can borrow for the week, we'd be happy for the extra equipment.  



Calendar Highlights:
  • April 5 (Thursday) - Walk-a-Thon; New Board member elections will be held at the regular Board meeting
  • April 6-16 - No school for students - spring break and inservice days
  • April 20 (Friday) - Lego Olympiad at LCCC
  • April 22 (Sunday) - Arts Fair and Ice Cream Social, 2-3:30 pm at MPA
  • April 23-27 - OAA standardized testing
  • April 26 (Thursday) - Seventh and Eighth Grade field trip to see Romeo and Juliet
  • April 27 (Friday) - School-wide Spelling Bee
  • April 28 (Saturday) - Quiz Night; Invention Convention
  • April 30-May 4 - Eighth Grade field trip to Washington D.C.; Sixth and Seventh Grade field trip to Mohican
  • May 7 (Monday) - Candid and group photo day for the yearbook
  • May 10-11 - Fourth Grade field trip to COSI in Columbus
  • May 14-17 - Iowa Tests for grades K-4; Explore Tests for grades 5-8
  • May 17 (Thursday) - 3:30 - 5 pm K-4 Carnival Sponsored by Student Council
  • May 18 (Friday) - 6:30 - 8:30 Middle School Dance
  • May 21 - 25 - Student Council Sponsored Spirit Week
  • June 1 (Friday) - Field Day at Lakewood Park
  • June 3 (Sunday) - Crushers baseball game, 5:05pm in Avon
  • August 26 (Sunday) - Back to School picnic at Lakewood Park
If you've got something you'd like to share with the school - a need for volunteers for your school event, an exciting achievement your child has made outside of school, or anything else you think MPA parents should know about - send the information to Gretchen Woods at avonhokie@yahoo.com.  The submission deadline for the weekly newsletter is each Wednesday at noon.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

MPA Newsletter 3/22/2012

Student Information

Trick out the kids' ride!  We're hoping someone can loan the school one or more sets of cartop luggage carriers to use for the Middle School trip to Washington, D.C.  We'd need to use them from April 30-May 4.  If you have a set the school can use, please contact Lynn.Wilson@MenloParkAcademy.com and let her know.  Thanks!

Doggone it, we missed hot lunch because of a field trip!  Not to worry ... the 1st grade, 5th grade & the 3 middle school Gardening Elective students who missed hot dog day today won't miss out.  We will be serving their hot dogs on Thursday, March 29th.  Bon Appetit!
 
Tryouts for the spring basketball league will finish this Friday 4:30-6pm at the Kamm's Corner YMCA.  Boys in grades 4-6 can come tryout to be on the team - there are still two spots available.  The spring team's first game will be Saturday, March 24th at 2:15 at the Lakewood YMCA.  The only cost for parents will be a team t-shirt (which is waived if your son was on the team this winter and can reuse his shirt).  Contact Coach Littlejohn at mpahoops@yahoo.com to let him know your child will be attending the tryout on Friday, or call him at 216-287-8786.

Mrs. Wilson wants you to clean your drawers ... and your closets.  There is a bin in front of the school office to use for donations of clean, good-condition school dress code clothes.  A parent has volunteered to sort and store these over the summer to make them available for families to use next year.  Since the weather has warmed up, it might be a good time to sort through those shirts and pants to see what's too short on your child (but would still look presentable on a smaller child) and get it out of your closets and drawers.

UFO alert!  The hallway outside of the school office is once again filling up with UFOs - Unclaimed Found Objects.  The weather has been so warm that many jackets, sweaters, and other cold-weather gear has been shed all over school property and left unclaimed.  Please ask your child to check through the items for anything you may be missing from your child's wardrobe.  And to the Brownie Scout who is missing her sash, complete with pins and badges - Mrs. Wilson is holding it for you at her desk.  Please come and claim it soon!

It's music to our ears: Congratulations to the MPA violinists and pianists who participated in the National Federation of Music Clubs Junior Festival on Saturday, March 17. There were around 400 student musicians jamming the hallways of Cleveland State University.  The MPA violin "team" played beautifully and was awarded Unanimous Superiors (the highest possible marks) and Excellents! Other students performing on piano won gold trophies, as well as one student who was awarded "Unanimous Superiors" on both piano and violin on the same day.  Mrs. Billey says: "I am so proud of their courage to compete and their dedication to preparation, which resulted in a great performance that day.  I thought you would enjoy knowing about these honored students!"

Science rules! Congratulations also go out to the students who participated in NEOSEF, a science/engineering fair that Mrs. Eby describes as "a step above CONSEF - over 600 participants, 425 of whom were 7th and 8th graders."  Nick Hiti and Sydney Hofstetter took third place and Quintin Kovach got an honorable mention.  Way to go!

Excellence in action: And finally, congratulations go to first grader Liza Woods, who recently received the MENSA Excellence in Reading award for completing their suggested reading list for K-3rd grade.  Liza is the first student in Ohio to win this honor, which makes it even more special.  Awesome job, Liza!

Development Information

Best before: Have you checked the expiration date on the Box Tops you're saving?  Many expire on March 31st!  Yes, EXPIRE!!  Send them in by Mon 3/27 so the Box Tops coordinator can get them ready and sent in before the expiration date.  Thank you!

Ahem:  Have you paid what you pledged to the MPA Annual Fund?  Checks made payable to MPA (with Annual Fund in the note section) can be sent to Tanya Reno via Thursday folders or any other school communications.  Please make sure that it's obvious who the check is from so we can properly credit your family for the donation.  Thanks for your support!

Left, right, left, right: Thursday, April 5th, will be our annual MPA Walk-A-Thon.  Please remember that unlike last year, all Walk-A-Thon donations must be collected before the event and are due Wednesday, April 4th. Students who raise more than $50 will receive a special edition MPA t-shirt.  So grab those sneakers (and checkbooks) and let's get walking!  If you are interested in volunteering for this event, please contact Kay O'Donnell at ckodonnell207@roadrunner.com to sign up.

Are you smarter than an MPA 5th grader?  Quiz Night is coming up - time to start getting together your team of eight adults to tackle our trivia challenges.  The event is Saturday, April 28th, at Brennan's (13000 Triskett Road).  Tickets are $40 per person and include hot and cold appetizers, non-alcoholic beverages, dessert, and one door prize ticket.  Check out the attached flier for more information and a sign-up sheet. And don't worry if you don't have enough people for a team - we'll be happy to help form a team for you. 

Volunteer Information

What a Pi of a night!  A big THANK YOU to the MPA community from the STEM Enrichment Committee for an awesome turn out at K-4 Math Night! The gym was packed and buzzed with activity! This was truly a demonstration of our MPA community all coming together to put on a fun, educational, and great event! Special thanks go out to all the volunteers who made all the yummy pies for the event and to the following parent/family volunteers (in alphabetical order) who helped to make Math Night happen:  Sara Atkins, Leah Barmasse, Julia Bowler, Sheila Buchanan, Mandy Czech, Ryan Czech, Rachel Didytch, Pat Harrington, Grant Henson (our fearless leader!!), Jennifer Henson, Natalie Hudak, Margie Kaufman, Heather Keirn-Swanson, Laura Koski, Renee Krohn, Cathie Leimbach, Stephanie Melnyk, Mary Romano, Brianna Ryan, Bridget Ryan, Jamie Ryan, and Latha Srinivasan. And thank you to the following Middle School student volunteers who did a great job helping out at the event: Natasha Didytch, JD James,Shannon Leimbach, Ojas Nadkarni, and Kaela Ryan. THANK YOU TO ALL!  We'd also like to recognize the following organizations for supporting MPA and Math Night: Math Monkey of Cleveland for donating their time, activities, and knowledge; Environmental Water Solutions for donating all of those awesome Math Night T-shirts; Mirabel Promotions, Ltd. for printing those T-shirts and donating the set-up fee; and Comfort Foods for donating the mini-pie door prizes! Thank you for supporting MPA!  Finally, the STEM Enrichment Committee would like to hear from YOU! Please take a few minutes to complete this survey so the Committee can make K-4 Math Night even better next year: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/YXB9XHB. Thank you for your feedback!

Walk this way:  We're looking for volunteers to help with the Walk-A-Thon on Thursday, April 5th.  We'll need folks to help corral the kids (we're walking outside, weather permitting), do recordkeeping, and so on.  Contact Kay O'Donnell at ckodonnell207@roadrunner.com if you'd like to help out.

Binding contract: We're looking for some volunteers to help assemble and bind the books our students have prepared for the Young Author's program.  We'll be working on this the entire week of April 30th, so if you're available to come in to school and help with it any time during that week, please contact heather.syracuse@hotmail.com.  And if anyone has an extra binding machine we can borrow for the week, we'd be happy for the extra equipment.  



Calendar Highlights:
  • March 21-23 (Wednesday-Friday) - Fifth Grade field trip to Camp Fitch
  • March 24 (Saturday) - Power of the Pen regional competition in Sandusky
  • April 5 (Thursday) - Walk-a-Thon; New Board member elections will be held at the regular Board meeting
  • April 6-16 - No school for students - spring break and inservice days
  • April 20 (Friday) - Lego Olympiad at LCCC
  • April 23-27 - OAA standardized testing
  • April 26 (Thursday) - Seventh and Eighth Grade field trip to see Romeo and Juliet
  • April 27 (Friday) - School-wide Spelling Bee
  • April 28 (Saturday) - Quiz Night; Invention Convention
  • April 30-May 4 - Eighth Grade field trip to Washington D.C.; Sixth and Seventh Grade field trip to Mohican
  • May 10-11 - Fourth Grade field trip to COSI in Columbus
  • May 14-17 - Iowa Tests for grades K-4; Explore Tests for grades 5-8
  • May 17 (Thursday) - 3:30 - 5 pm K-4 Carnival Sponsored by Student Council
  • May 18 (Friday) - 6:30 - 8:30 Middle School Dance
  • May 21 - 25 - Student Council Sponsored Spirit Week
  • June 1 (Friday) - Field Day at Lakewood Park
  • June 3 (Sunday) - Crushers baseball game
  • August 26 (Sunday) - Back to School picnic at Lakewood Park
If you've got something you'd like to share with the school - a need for volunteers for your school event, an exciting achievement your child has made outside of school, or anything else you think MPA parents should know about - send the information to Gretchen Woods at avonhokie@yahoo.com.  The submission deadline for the weekly newsletter is each Wednesday at noon.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

MPA Newsletter 3/14/2012

MPA Newsletter, 3/14/2012

Development Information

So, do you ever buy gas?  Shop for groceries?  Eat at a restaurant?  Of course you do!  Wouldn't it be convenient if you could take care of those things and raise money for the school at the same time?  You bet!  That's why the Scrip gift cards are such a great idea.  You order your gift cards through the school, MPA gets a percentage of the purchase price, and everybody is happy.  You can find more information on the program at http://menloparkacademy.blogspot.com/p/fundraising-events.html.  (editor's note: Did you know you can use the Giant Eagle gift cards to buy OTHER gift cards at the grocery store, which may earn you FuelPerks and gives you access to some cards you can't find online?  My personal goal this month: use Giant Eagle cards to buy Visa or American Express gift cards so I can eat cash-free at Chick-Fil-A and Jimmy Johns.)  Scrip card orders for this month are due Tuesday, March 20th. 

Have you checked the expiration date on the Box Tops you're saving?  Many expire on March 31st!  Yes, EXPIRE!!  Send them in by Mon 3/27 so the Box Tops coordinator can get them ready and sent in before the expiration date.  Don't forget about the Box Tops classroom competition!  Wondering what individual reward may be coming up?  Nothing in the works as we get ready for the classroom rewards in May.  If you have a donation or idea for a raffle prize, please contact the Box Tops coordinator at sludersl@yahoo.com  Thank you!

Time for the weekly Annual Fund mention ... have you made a pledge?  If so, thank you!  Now it's time to start thinking about actually PAYING those pledged amounts.  Checks made payable to MPA (with Annual Fund in the note section) can be sent to Tanya Reno via Thursday folders or any other school communications.  Please make sure that it's obvious who the check is from so we can properly credit your family for the donation.  And don't forget that you can pay online, too: just click the "Donate" button on the bottom right of the school website homepage at https://sites.google.com/site/menloparkacademy/Home .

Thursday, April 5th, will be our annual MPA Walk-A-Thon.  Students will be walking laps to raise money for the school.  This is a great way to get your extended family involved in our fundraising - print out the attached form, give Grandma or Aunt Susie a call, and see how much you can raise!  Students who raise more than $50 will receive a special edition MPA t-shirt.  Each homeroom will have a specific fundraising goal, and all classes who meet their goals will be able to participate in a Pajama Day later this year!  So grab those sneakers (and checkbooks) and let's get walking!

Quiz Night is coming up - have you started getting together your team of eight adults to tackle our trivia challenges?  The event is Saturday, April 28th, at Brennan's (13000 Triskett Road).  Tickets are $40 per person and include hot and cold appetizers, non-alcoholic beverages, dessert, and one door prize ticket.  There will be a Chinese raffle and silent auctions for prize baskets ... plus some awesome trivia action!  Stay tuned for more information and ticket sales.  And don't worry if you don't have enough people for a team - we'll be happy to help form a team for you. 


Student Information

Welcome to new Kindergarten student Carol Burgess!  We're so glad to have you join your sister Dorothy here at MPA!  And welcome to Rita Elsea, who joins our faculty as our full-time intervention specialist.  She moved back to Ohio this year after honing her skills in Chatanooga, Tennessee.  When she's not working with students in K-8, she might be found in her office across from the computer lab upstairs. 

Thank you for returning the forms we needed to apply for the increased e-rate discount for our utilities.  We have received sufficient response to qualify for the discount ... so all those little pieces of paper will be saving us big money!  Thanks for taking the time to return them.

It's official - all after-hours entry to the school (including Edison Club pick-ups) will be done through the door that connects DIRECTLY to the gym.  It's not on the same side of the building as the usual entrances - it's around the left corner of the building and down some stairs.  There's a buzzer and everything, so if you need to get into the building after 4pm, try that door first.

Tryouts for the spring basketball league begin this Friday, March 16th, from 4:30-6pm at the Kamm's Corner YMCA.  Boys in grades 4-6 can come tryout to be on the team, which will have practices every Friday this spring at the Kamm's Corner YMCA, and Games every Saturday from March 24-May 5 at the Lakewood YMCA.  The only cost for parents will be a team t-shirt (which is waived if your son was on the team this winter and can reuse his shirt).  Contact Coach Littlejohn at mpahoops@yahoo.com to let him know your child will be attending the tryout on Friday, or call him at 216-287-8786.

Did you know ... that if you pack a carbonated beverage for your kid for lunch, and then the kid swings their lunch bag around and drop-kicks it down the hall and slams it down on the lunch table, chances are pretty good that the soda is going to foam up all over the place and ruin their lunch when they open it.  True fact!  Isn't physical chemistry awesome?  So please, think twice before sending in the fizzy beverages - or at least warn your kids to handle their lunches more gently on days when they bring a Coke with their lunch.

Please remind your children that the student handbook they (supposedly) read and signed off on at the beginning of the year specifically says that students are not permitted to use phones, i-anythings, or other technology during school hours without the EXPLICIT permission of a teacher.  The tech gadgets need to stay in backpacks during the school day.  Sorry, kids, but the volunteers are NOT going to be falling for "But my teacher said it was okay to play Plants vs. Zombies on my iPad during indoor recess!" anymore.

Monday, March 19th, will be the MPA band and strings concert.  The musicians will perform for the other students at an assembly at 2pm that day, and later for family and friends at 6:30pm.  Parents are welcome to attend either (or both!) of the performances.

Here's the buzz: homeroom teachers are conducting qualifiers this month to identify which four students from each classroom will be competing in the spelling bee on April 27th.  Good luck to all of the students who hope to participate!

CALLING ALL INVENTORS!!!    Invention Convention is Saturday, April 28, 2012!  The Invention Convention inspires students to create and problem solve while developing inventions. It differs from science fairs in that the focus of the curriculum is to recognize simple to complex problems that individuals face everyday and follow them through the process of creating solutions to them.  Specific information about the contest and what is involved in preparing for it can be found on the Invention Convention website (http://www.just-think-inc.com/cleveland/index.html). I suggest that parents of interested students read through the evaluation guidelines (http://www.just-think-inc.com/documents/evaluationguidelines.pdf) to see what will be expected of students to help them decide whether they want to take part.  This year, Menlo Park may register a maximum 4 students for this eventAfter reading through the guidelines, if your child is interested in participating, please email Karen Peacock at Karen@OcularConcepts.us.  You will then be provided with the next steps for your child to try and earn a spot in the competition.  

Make a note on your calendar - Field Day will be Friday, June 1st, at Lakewood Park.  We'll be calling for volunteers later, but for now - time to request the day off of work so you can come watch or help out!  And while it seems like it's a long way away, you might as well set aside Sunday, August 26th for next year's back-to-school picnic.

Speaking of next year ... check out the attached school calendar for details of the 2012-2013 school year.  Some highlights:
  • Parent-teacher conferences will be about mid-way through each trimester, rather than at report card time, as they were this year.
  • Thanksgiving break will be a full week.
  • A Winter Respite 4-day weekend has been added in February. 
  • And a last-minute whoops! edit: There will be no school on September 29 or 30 during the next school year, regardless of what the calendar shows.  

Volunteer Information

Wondering whether we need help with lunch or recess on a particular day?  Be sure to check outwww.volunteerspot.com to see if we're fully-booked or desperately in need of extra hands for any particular day.  And thanks for your help!

Calling all parents!  We're looking for volunteers to help with the Walk-A-Thon on Thursday, April 5th.  We'll need folks to help keep track of laps, corral the kids (we're walking outside, weather permitting), do recordkeeping, and so on.  Contact Kay O'Donnell at ckodonnell207@roadrunner.com if you'd like to help out.



Calendar Highlights:
·  March 15 (Thursday) Prospective Board candidates are invited to attend a Question & Answer session with Board members at 6:00pm at the school.
·  March 16 (Friday) - No school for students - inservice day; Spring basketball league tryouts at Kamm's Corner YMCA from 4:30-6pm
·  March 19 (Monday) - Photo make-up, club and candid day; Strings and Band Concert at MPA at 6:30
·  March 20 (Tuesday) - Fourth Grade field trip to Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
·  March 21 (Wednesday) - First Grade field trip to Great Lakes Science Center; Middle School gardening elective field trip to the Galleria "garden under glass"
·  March 21-23 (Wednesday-Friday) - Fifth Grade field trip to Camp Fitch
·  March 24 (Saturday) - Power of the Pen regional competition in Sandusky
·  April 5 (Thursday) - Walk-a-Thon; New Board member elections will be held at the regular Board meeting
·  April 6-16 - No school for students - spring break and inservice days
·  April 20 (Friday) - Lego Olympiad at LCCC
·  April 23-27 - OAA standardized testing
·  April 26 (Thursday) - Seventh and Eighth Grade field trip to see Romeo and Juliet
·  April 27 (Friday) - School-wide Spelling Bee
·  April 28 (Saturday) - Quiz Night; Invention Convention
·  April 30-May 4 - Eighth Grade field trip to Washington D.C.; Sixth and Seventh Grade field trip to Mohican
·  May 10-11 - Fourth Grade field trip to COSI in Columbus
·  May 17 (Thursday) - 3:30 - 5 pm K-4 Carnival Sponsored by Student Council
·  May 18 (Friday) - 6:30 - 8:30 Middle School Dance
·  May 21 - 25 Student Council Sponsored Spirit Week
·  June 1 (Friday) - Field Day at Lakewood Park
·  June 3 (Sunday) - Crushers baseball game
·  August 26 (Sunday) - Back to School picnic at Lakewood Park
If you've got something you'd like to share with the school - a need for volunteers for your school event, an exciting achievement your child has made outside of school, or anything else you think MPA parents should know about - send the information to Gretchen Woods at avonhokie@yahoo.com.  The submission deadline for the weekly newsletter is each Wednesday at noon.

Invention Convention details

CALLING ALL INVENTORS!!!    Invention Convention - April 28, 2012
The Invention Convention inspires students to create and problem solve while developing inventions. It differs from science fairs in that the focus of the curriculum is to recognize simple to complex problems that individuals face everyday and follow them through the process of creating solutions to them.  This year, Menlo Park may register a maximum 4 students for this event
 
Specific information about the contest and what is involved in preparing for it can be found on the Invention Convention website (http://www.just-think-inc.com/cleveland/index.html). I suggest that parents of interested students read through the evaluation guidelines (http://www.just-think-inc.com/documents/evaluationguidelines.pdf) to see what will be expected of students to help them decide whether they want to take part.
 
After reading through the guidelines, if your child is interested in participating, please email Karen Peacock at Karen@OcularConcepts.us.  You will then be provided with the next steps for your child to try and earn a spot in the competition.  

MPA Newsletter 3/7/2012

Please don't forget that Daylight Savings Time begins this weekend, so set your clocks AHEAD by one hour on Saturday night/Sunday morning.  We don't want anyone to be late for school on Monday, do we?

Development Information:

It's been a busy couple of weeks for the development team - here are some of the highlights of what we have accomplished:
  • Alex Riviera was the winner of the Kindle Fire raffle, which raised $942 in profit for the school.
  • Our top auction items were the Tom Brady jersey ($550) and the Lego robotics workshop ($500).
  • We have two unclaimed prizes from the raffle:  the Middle School Zentangle was won by ticket number 297931, and the Second Grade Zentangle goes to ticket number 510605.  If you entered to win either of these items, check your tickets and contact Tanya.Reno@MenloParkAcademy.com if your ticket matches these winners!
  • All together, the "From the Heart" fundraiser and concert raised more than $10,000 in profit for MPA.
  • The Scholastic book sale was also a success, selling more than $5,300 in merchandise and raising about $3,000 in Scholastic dollars we can spend on books for the school.   Thanks also to all those parents who stopped in before or after conferences to browse and buy.
  • The annual fund pledges are still coming in (and we'd be happy to accept yours, if you haven't pledged yet!).  Right now we're at about 74% participation, for a total of more than $62,000 pledged.  Our goal for the year is to raise at least $70,000, so we're really close ... can you help us reach the goal?
Speaking of the annual fund, if you've made a pledge, please check with your employer to see if they have any sort of matching gift program.  We've already received matching donations from Sherwin-Williams, Key Bank, Eaton Corporation, PNC Bank, and AIG.  If you have any questions about the process, our development coordinator would be happy to help out: Tanya.Reno@MenloParkAcademy.com .

Our next fundraiser will be Quiz Night, which will be held the evening of Saturday, April 28th at Brennan's, which is located near MPA.  Teams of eight adults will answer questions on a variety of topics and compete for prizes.  Mark your calendar, and start getting together your teams (if you don't know seven other MPA adults, we'll be happy to help you make up a team).  More information will be coming soon!

Student Information:

If you are having problems accessing your student's Progress Book account, contact Lynn.Wilson@MenloParkAcademy.comor Carol.Scheuer@MenloParkAcademy.com.  They can confirm that you have the correct password and help you with the login process.  Also, please remember to sign and return the envelope that enclosed the recent report card. We will be using those envelopes to mail report cards at the end of the school year.

Congratulations to the following middle school students for best representing the character trait "responsibility" for the month: Isabel Veloso, Owen Kranz, and John Antolik.

Congratulations to all the students who participated in CONSEF last week!  It really was a wonderful day with more than 500 students from seven states participating. Out of 44 schools in attendance, Menlo came in second overall.Our students did exceptionally well. John Antolik got best in category (computer science). Nine students got gold medals - Sam Ammari, Hector Cummings, Andrew Beck, Emily Carroccio, Fraser Hamilton, Ojas Nadkarni, Grant Gibeault and Nick Hiti. Seven kids got silver - Patrick O'Malley, Isabel Veloso, Alexandra Harrison, Liam Kovach, Owen Kranz, Sophia Ross and Teresa Szczecinski. Three students got bronze - Sparsh Balabadrapatruni, Aidan Harrington and Quintin Kovach. Sydney Hofstetter got an Honorable Mention. So all the MPA students who participated won something. For more information about the CONSEF science fair, visit http://www.consef.org/Results.aspx

Mrs. Scheuer would like to remind families to send in a completed income survey (it went home in last week's folder). The information will help MPA take advantage of discounted phone and internet service and will only be viewed by our business manager. He will compile the data and submit it to Mrs. Scheuer without the family names. Please see the attached letter for more information and the blank form.  Thanks for your support.
 
MPA's K-4 Math Night is just a week away! Join us on Pi Day, Wednesday, March 14, 2012, from 6:30 to 8 p.m.! Activities will include fun and interactive math-related puzzles and games, including bonafide Math Jeopardy! match-ups by grade level, flexagons, tangrams, and creative ways of calculating pi. We are lucky to have Math Monkey of Cleveland (www.mathmonkeycleveland.com) as a sponsor of some of our activity stations, including a math cornhole game, the popular ThinkFun Rush Hour game, and a math fishing game for the younger kids. Parents and students will also be able to have their pi and eat it too - look for yummy pies at the refreshment table! Specially created Math Night T-shirts and mini-pies will be awarded as door prizes! For parents interested in learning more about Singapore Math, a loop presentation will be available to watch at the event. We hope you will join us for some math fun! Questions regarding K-4 Math Night can be directed to Latha at LMS54321@gmail.com or Grant at granthens@gmail.comSEE YOU THERE!

Parents, please be courteous of each other in the mornings and do not begin forming a car line in front of the building until 8 am.  Parents who must park and escort students in to Edison Club in the mornings before the school is open to all students have been having problems finding parking spaces that weren't blocked by the car line.  Thanks for your understanding and cooperation!

Speaking of Edison Club, families who participate in the program may be pleased to hear that we are working on installing a door buzzer on the set of doors nearest the gym, so that it will be more convenient for you to pick up and drop off your students.  We'll let you know when it's installed and operational!

The US Chess Federation has just released its updated standings and Dominic Mayhew is now listed among the top 100 chess players his age in the country, and among the top 50 K-6 chess players in Ohio!  Congratulations, Dominic!

One final note from the school administrators - thank you, parents, for your patience and understanding as we search for a person to fill the Operations Manager position.  We're doing our best to answer questions and get the work done, but it really helps that everyone has been so flexible and patient.  Thank you!

Volunteer Information:

We owe a GIANT "Thank You!" to the myriad of volunteers who helped to make the book sale and fundraising auction successful last month.  Whether you worked the cash register, helped kids select books, donated an item or service for the raffle baskets, helped distribute or collect raffle tickets, or bid on an auction item - you were part of a ridiculous number of people who helped out!  And thanks to all of your effort, these two events raised more than $13,000 in funds and book vouchers - money that helps ALL of our students.  So, from the bottom of our hearts - THANK YOU!

We know that the MPA community is an amazing resource, so helping us find new members to serve on our Board should be no exception.  This April, MPA’s Board of Directors will conduct our annual elections and are seeking to add members to the Board.  More information on the requirements and process can be found on our blog at http://menloparkacademy.blogspot.com/2012/02/board-member-search.html.  Thursday, March 8th is the initial deadline for applications, so get your papers together post-haste if you're interested in coming on board!

After the success of our boys' basketball team this year, we're excited about the prospect of putting together a girls' team for next year.  In order to get started, we'll need to find a location that is willing to host five games for us. The location will need to have a regulation-sized court with bleachers and a scoreboard.  If you know of any site that might be able to accommodate us, please pass the information on to Coach Littlejohn at wbl8305@sbcglobal.net.

Calendar Highlights:
  • March 8 (Thursday) - Fourth and Fifth Grade field trip to Hanna Theatre;  Board candidate applications should be submitted by this date.
  • March 14 (Wednesday) - Math Night from 6:30-8pm
  • March 15 (Thursday) Prospective Board candidates are invited to attend a Question & Answer session with Board members at 6:00pm at the school.
  • March 16 (Friday) - No school for students - inservice day
  • March 19 (Monday) - Photo make-up, club and candid day; Strings and Band Concert at MPA at 6:30
  • March 21-23 (Wednesday-Friday) - Fifth Grade field trip to Camp Fitch
  • March 24 (Saturday) - Power of the Pen regional competition in Sandusky
  • April 5 (Thursday) - New Board member elections will be held at the regular Board meeting
  • April 6-16 - No school for students - spring break and inservice days
  • April 20 (Friday) - Lego Olympiad at LCCC
  • April 27 (Friday) - School-wide Spelling Bee
  • April 28 (Saturday) - Quiz Night
  • June 3 (Sunday) - Crushers baseball game
  • Sept. (TBD) - Golf scramble fundraiser
If you've got something you'd like to share with the school - a need for volunteers for your school event, an exciting achievement your child has made outside of school, or anything else you think MPA parents should know about - send the information to Gretchen Woods at avonhokie@yahoo.com.  The submission deadline for the weekly newsletter is each Wednesday at noon.