It’s the End of Summer

A Welcome from Mrs. Haugen

Welcome to all our new families and returning families!  I hope this first New Shamrock News finds you rested, rejuvenated and ready for a new school year.  I know I’ve enjoyed my break immensely.  My family and I took a trip to Kauai and rounded out the break with two camping trips.  I can’t wait to hear about your summer adventures.

I’ve been here in the office readying things for our return on August 17th.  I’m learning my way around Dr. Martin’s old stomping grounds and feeling comfortable and supported by our staff, parents and my new principal colleagues.

You’ll notice I called this The New Shamrock News.  Mrs. Paisley (amazing, creative publisher of our Shamrock News in years’ past) has taken a break from this volunteer effort.  Thank you to Mrs. Paisley for keeping us published and looking good!  Since there’s a bit of change going on already here at Grant, I decided to mix up the Shamrock News a bit and put it in the hands of the GLT.  Our Grant Leadership Team will be working together to write and publish articles about the goings-on around campus.  I am so excited for this new format and can’t wait to send you all the first edition from our August/September GLT.  Stay tuned!  And if you’re a parent who’d like to help with this new project, just let me know.

Construction on the Track is Underway!

August 3, 2011 Pouring the Curb

On Saturday, July 23, 2011, construction began on our track!  The Track Committee, Steve Bolman (Petaluma’s Interim Superintendent), and I were all excited to get started.  Delays in the bidding process held us up in June, but we’ve been patient this long, so might as well stay persistent and see it through!  Due to our late start, construction will most likely go through the end of September although if you take a peek at the slideshow on our website, you’ll notice things are moving along a quite a clip.  We have a plan in place for a split recess (1st to 3rd, 4th to 6th) to accommodate a smaller play area and keep our students safe.  Likewise is the plan for lunch with a return to our normal all school recess when construction is complete. 

Upcoming Dates to Know

  • PTA sponsored New Family Potluck: Monday, August 15th at 5:30, bring a side dish to share and come mingle, take an Ambassador Tour, and get to know us!
  • Class Lists Posted: Tuesday, August 16th at 4pm outside the office
  • 1st day of school: Wednesday, August 17th (it’s an early release Wednesday–11:25 for K, 12:45 for 1st to 6th)
  • Picture Days: Thursday, August 25th and Friday, August 26th–check your student’s registration envelope for specifics
  • Back to School Night: Wednesday, August 31st (6:15-7:15 K to 3rd, 7:15-7:30 Introduction of PTA and staff in Multi, 7:30-8:30 4th to 6th)

Mrs. Ihrig went to Washington, DC!

TAH Teaching American History

submitted by Leslie Ihrig 

What did you do this summer? Teachers from Petaluma, Novato, Santa Rosa, Windsor, and Sonoma Valley participated in TAH Petaluma (a federally granted teaching American history project). They completed three years of intense professional development and deepened their knowledge of American History. Leslie Ihrig (teacher leader – Grant), Michele Andersen (Penngrove), and Jeanie Heaslet (McNear) are the Petaluma District teachers involved in this project.

Each summer institute had a specific theme: year one –  “ethno genesis” – first contact and exploration, year two – “palimpsest” with an emphasis on colonial communities, and (this summer) year three – “heritage” with an emphasis on revolution and constitution culminating with a trip to Philadelphia, Plimoth, and Boston.

The TAH project goals and objectives were to increase content knowledge for teachers, improve curriculum instruction quality in American history, raise achievement for all students, develop a teacher leader network, and develop the use of technology as a means for collecting and communicating ideas, lessons, and project efforts. The project was directed by Sue Olds. Nancy Case-Rico was the professional development director and Drs. Margaret Purser and Michelle Jolly, from SSU, lent their expertise and knowledge through college level lectures and activities.

From August 8-10th Mrs. Ihrig traveled to Washington DC to co-present How TAH Petaluma Enriched our Classrooms: The Teachers’ Perspective (with Nancy Case-Rico, Sonoma State University,
Christina Lunde, Novato Schools, and Sue Olds, Petaluma City Schools) at the Teaching American History Annual Director’s Conference. The goal of the conference was to examine what it means to be a history teacher today. The theme was Lens on Talent: Portraits of Great History Teachers. This conference featured presenters from all over the country and panels that have been involved in developing the history education profession.

The three-year TAH project met its goals of integrating academic content and quality instruction into American History curriculum. Fifty-two teachers from TAH Petaluma will be heading back to their classrooms full of ideas and enthusiasm, enhancing their existing programs with the love of history!

A Reminder about Drop off and Pick up

Students arriving at school before 7:55 should wait at the office until the bell that releases students to the blacktop and ensures that supervision for those students is present.  If you are on campus with your student, please model these procedures for your student and others.
Please use the yellow marked curb at the front of school for drop off and pick up only.  No parking.  We try to be good neighbors here on narrow Grant Avenue so keeping students safe and traffic moving is key.  If you need to park, please use the unmarked curb areas or park at the back of school and walk in.  The parking lot barely holds the cars of staff, so this is unavailable for parent pick up or drop off.
Kindergarten parents should come to the classroom door to pick up their students.  If you are in Mrs. Baumann and Ms. Reed’s class, please keep the hallway clear and quiet for the neighboring 1st grade class.  We appreciate your understanding that school is still in session for our other students.

Looking for Help 

We are looking for a few parent helpers to drop in now and then or commit to a set schedule to assist with teacher photocopying in the work room.  We’ve got a queue system set up and some training planned.  If you’d like to help our students and teachers in this capacity, please contact Mrs. Haugen (778-4742).  Thank you in advance for all you do, big or small, many hours or few, for our school.
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