Gratitude is our theme this month at QAE. Ms. Stone and some of our students are celebrating and sharing gratitude through song. Enjoy!
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“No one who achieves success does so without the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude.” Alfred North Whitehead
I would like to take a moment to express my deepest gratitude to our school community. In the past two months, the QAE community has raised over $100,000 to support our school. As of this writing, the Explorer Fund Drive has made $58,427.40 in direct donations* and our students raised over $45,000 during the Jog-a-thon to help support programs and classes so important to them (music!). Without this financial support it would be virtually impossible to supplement the education and experience your child receives at QAE. Things would need to be cut; tough decisions would need to be made.
It is uncomfortable to ask families to give money to QAE – simply to give money. It is strange to ask a family who may be struggling to make ends meet to give what little money they might have left over at the end of their paycheck to support our little school.
I knew when I took on the challenge of attempting to raise $75,000 that I would be unable to meet this goal without the support and commitment of the QAE community. I am humbled at the generosity our community has shown this fall. When I sit around my dining room table with family and friends tomorrow, I will be grateful for your support and your commitment to QAE.
While we have not met our financial goal (yet!), there is still time! You can donate here.
Yours in gratitude,
*with $19,800 pledged in matching
Once again, Queen Anne Elementary is joining in the largest learning event in history: The Hour of Code, during Computer Science Education Week. Last year, 15 million students tried computer science in one week. This year, we're joining students worldwide to reach 100 million students!
We live in a world surrounded by technology. And we know that whatever field our students choose to go into as adults, their ability to succeed will increasingly hinge on understanding how technology works. But only a tiny fraction of us are learning computer science, and fewer students are studying it than a decade ago.
Our Hour of Code aligns directly with Queen Anne Elementary commitment to 21st century learning. To continue bringing programming activities to your students, we want to make our Hour of Code event huge. We need your help to make this event successful and bring coding into our children’s lives.
In the next week we will send out link to sign up to volunteer to help on Thursday, December 11th. We’ll need morning, afternoon, and all day volunteers. Last year we had about 20 volunteers, this year we are shooting for 50! It’s amazing how excited our kids are to code—We hope you’ll have a chance to see it first hand and help support their discovery. We know that many parents cannot attend and in the coming weeks we’ll send other ways that you can get involved and support the effort.
Learn more about the Hour of Code: http://hourofcode.com/us
If the following applies to you, please read the update about advanced learning testing for this Saturday, November 22 at the John Stanford Center:
Update: Testing will be held at the John Stanford Center this coming Saturday, November 22 (not at QAE) at your scheduled time of 9:00am or 12:30pm (you should have received your testing time from the advanced learning office).
For students in grades 2-5 who applied by the October 2 deadline, missed the November 8 testing, and don't have a rescheduled test date, please contact the Advanced Learning Office to reschedule.
If you applied for advanced learning after the October 2 deadline, please visit Advanced Learning - Testing.
For questions about testing, please contact:
Advanced Learning Office
Email (for quickest response):
(Please include your child's name and student ID#)
John Stanford Center
2445 3rd Ave S, Seattle, WA 98134
It is the start of that crazy busy time of year. Check out the latest, very timely, SEL Blog.
The Maintenance and Care of You
Parenting and teaching are creative acts. We don't generally think of them as such. Our cultural myths are that each is simple, even intuitive. Or that they are a matter of following easily laid out principles or curriculums. Just read a few books and you are good to go.
But parenting and teaching absolutely are not simple nor are they step-by-step processes. They each require a tremendous amount of creative energy. As with all creativity, you cannot continually tap into it without replenishing it. That is why it is so essential to incorporate self-care into your parenting—or teaching—practice.
QAE's second annual Dwankhozi Week is coming up just after Thanksgiving break, December 1st-5th. This week is all about coming together and learning about our school partnership (both students and staff). Here is an outline of events that will be happening during the week!
Monday Morning Meeting - Kickoff with Mr. Elliott and Ms. Ward
Dwankhozi Gallery Walk - Tuesday (K-2) & Wednesday (3-5) - 9:30am-11:30am in the Covered Play Court
Students will be allowed to engage in various Zambian/Dwankhozi related activities, including maize tasting, recyclable projects (fabric, stamps, soccer balls), water awareness, story corner and a photo gallery.
Sharing throughout the week:
** Volunteers are needed to help out for the Gallery walk on Tuesday & Wednesday. If you can help out from 9am - Noon (on one or both days) with setup, working at a station, directing students and cleanup, please contact Beth MacLean. **
If you plan to do any holiday shopping on Amazon, please remember to start your shopping through one of QAE's Amazon links. When you make a purchase through one of our links, Queen Anne Elementary receives money back from Amazon.
1. Bookmark this page: http://smile.amazon.com/?tag=qae-20
2. Visit our home page and click on the AmazonSmile image
You will need to go through one of these links each time you shop at Amazon for QAE to earn a percentage of your purchase.
Last year we earned over $920 during the holiday season, something to be thankful for.
QAE PTSA Amazon Team
A few words from Ms. Amsel:
"I am excited to be at Queen Anne Elementary! I am a National Board Certified (NBCT) visual art teacher and have taught grades seven through twelve. I enjoy watching my students grow creatively and become inspired by art and the artists and culture around them. I believe that every student can learn how to see the world differently through creating art."
Welcome to month three at QAE! How is it going so far?
The staff is amazing, the kids are wonderful and creative, and our parents are so supportive. I love how the staff is so passionate and involved; it’s such a great positive environment to work in. If I have a new idea, everyone is “IN” and excited.
You taught high school students before coming to QAE to teach elementary students—what are some of the joys and challenges of teaching K - 5 students?
What a change I decided to take on, but I love it! I’m realizing that even though my students are younger than I’m used to, if pushed, they can create some amazing things and go beyond what I’ve asked them to do. They can take on multi-step projects, follow directions, try new mediums and techniques that they have never tried, and I can still build on creativity, perseverance, and growth. I feel like I am getting their young minds to create things that I have never experienced. When I put something in front of a kindergartner, they will always try—and they are excited to try. I’m slowly realizing that I can teach some of the same skills and techniques to K-5 students as I did to HS students - just at a different level and pace.
This change has definitely pushed me to become a more organized person with 16 classes and almost 400 students, along with the transitions, time, and remembering everyone’s name (which has been hard)! The biggest challenge has been time management. I think because of the fast classes - only 30-40 min, the change between classes is sometimes 5 min for clean-up and line up - I have to be on top of everything! I also have had to get used to the younger ages and their short attention spans. I can’t talk as much at the beginning of class. They are so eager to DO art, that holding their attention is really hard. I’ve also struggled with the noise levels. They truly love art and want to be there, but they get so excited to talk and do art it’s hard to keep the noise level at a “studio level” - we are working on that.
How often do you see each class?
In the upper grades (2-5), not enough, only 1 or 2 times a week on a three week rotation for 40 minutes; K and 1, I see twice a week for 30 minutes.
What mediums do you teach, and do you have a favorite?
I will teach and have taught everything! I love to paint, do printmaking, and mixed media. I’m sure you will see my style and love for certain mediums shine through my students' work - like the multi-layered, mixed media projects we are already working on. I also enjoy teaching ceramics and would love to get a kiln at this school so we could have the option to work with clay.
How do you incorporate PBL?
I have already worked with the kindergarten classes on their All About Me project - incorporating a self-portrait, a plate of food they like, and pumpkins that look like them. In 1st grade, I’m going to start a “Story Quilt” soon to incorporate their What Does the Past Tell Us project. For 2nd grade, I will work on incorporating their Soil and Water units into my curriculum soon using watercolors and real dirt for paintings. For 3rd grade, I’m working on Cursive in art since they are working on it in Writing; I will also create an art project based around their Salmon unit that is coming up. For 4th - 5th grades, we are meeting soon to figure out some interesting projects to do together. And, Ms. Stone and I are starting a 5th grade PBL project for an outdoor Sound Garden.
When I do have extra PBL time, I offer grades to come in for extra art time if they miss an art class for field trips, holidays, early releases, etc., or if I need to have a grade level complete an art project, ie. during Day of Dead projects, they came in for some extra art time, and students love extra art time!
I hope to do more as the year progresses - I love collaborating!
Who is your favorite artist and how has he or she inspired you?
Oh...this is a hard question! I’ve always loved Marc Chagall and his dream-like paintings, focusing on stories, dreams, life, and colors - Expressionist! Color, emotion, not always real, but so vibrant! There’s something to say about the realists too, but my 20th Century Modern Art class in college was one of my favorites. There are a lot of contemporary local artists who are very inspiring with their mixed-media collaging that I enjoy looking at too.
What art books would you recommend?
The Dot is an amazing story and message for kids of all ages! I started all of my classes with this book this year. Ish has a great message for making a “mark” and becoming an artist. Art Synectics and Design Synectics have some great ideas for higher level thinking skills, especially for high school.
What do you enjoy doing when you are not teaching?
I love to be outside! Any chance I get, I am running, biking, hiking, camping, or on the water somewhere. I love the sun, so I soak it up as much as I can. I also love to read, create my own artwork, and listen to music.
How can I help?
1. Encourage your kids to create, be creative, dream, and experiment with new ideas (work on arts & crafts, bake or cook dinner, build a fort)!
2. Volunteer for one or more of the many opportunities - send me an e-mail if you can help:
Thank you for supporting our students during this year's Jog-a-Thon! Because of you, our students raised over $45,000 to support QAE!
Your donations have already purchased xylophones for Ms. Stone's classroom as well as percussion instruments. Your child will be using these instruments knowing that he/she was "instrumental" in purchasing these items. Additionally, you helped fund the salaries of our math & reading instructional assistants and our lovely music teacher Ms. Stone.
You and your child - and about 399 of his/her closest friends - made such a big difference in this school and for our students. Thank you!
We've simplified our home page so you can have current information at a glance. Be sure to visit it often!
We've created a site map (it includes most links) so you can avoid navigating through our drop down menus. The site map link can be found at the bottom of the home page.
For questions or feedback, please contact Karen & Cari, PTSA Communications Team. Thank you!
Dwankhozi Week at QAE is coming up, December 1st - 5th. More information about the schedule of events will be coming soon!
What is Dwankhozi Week?
Dwankhozi week is a time for your child to focus in on and experience first hand exactly what this relationship means to them. There will be school-wide projects that go along with Dwankhozi Week that not only connects us with Dwankhozi, but also our children with each other. Dwankhozi Week is a time where our kids can come together to ask questions of themselves, the staff at QAE, members of the Dwankhozi Hope Organization and even directly to the members of the Partner school in Zambia.
To make this week a success the QAE Partnership Team is asking for the following items/tasks:
Early in October Mr. Liner (3rd) and Ms. Dickens (2nd) announced QAE's year-long theme ~ Mistakes Are Welcome Here! Each month, students will explore a character trait tied to this theme. October was all about being Brave! Mr. Liner and Ms. Dickens shared with us that they found brave in Dr. Seuss' book, "The Lorax", when the Lorax said, "I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues." Each class collaborated on what brave means or represents to them and filled Truffula Trees with their amazing ideas.
If you haven't seen it, check out this amazing Brave Video featuring our very own QAE students! Thank you to Will Miceli for helping make it happen.
Here are a few more links to check out on what being Brave looks like at QAE:
Ms. Colando's 4th Graders
Mr. Bailey's 5th Graders
Ms. Meck's 1st Graders
Ms. Cryan-Leary's Kindergartners
Thank you to all who helped share the "Brave" message in October! And on that note, up next will be a November filled with "Gratitude"!!
Welcome to the Rocket Reader blog! The PTSA's collection of news & information relevant to QAE Families. This is also shared weekly in the Rocket Reader e-newsletter. Use the form below to sign up!
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