The End of the First Trimester

Emergency Preparedness–It’s for all of us!

In October we participated in The Great California Shake Down.  We held an earthquake drill that teaches students to duck, cover and hold on.  All classes then evacuate the building to our assembly positions on the blacktop.  The drill went smoothly.  I am very proud of our students and staff.  When parents and other adults are on campus it is imperative that everyone participate in these drills.  In the event of an actual emergency, we would be accounting for everyone on campus–parent volunteers, mentors, guest speakers, etc.  We’re all a part of emergency preparedness!

An Author Visits  By Jack

Paul Zelinski and Emily Jenkins came on Monday October 24 and showed there book, Toys Come Home. Paul Zelinski drew for everybody and Emily Jenkins read some of the book.  Toys Come Home is the 3rd book in this series.  It’s about a toy sting ray, a toy buffalo and a toy bouncey ball.  They go on lots of adventures together.  Mr. Zelinski, the illustrator, gave his signed drawings to our library.

Fourth Grade Social Studies by Ally

During fourth grade Social Studies we learn about different regions, urban rural and suburban areas, Indians, also absolute location, and the discovers ofCalifornia. Once we even made a dough map project. Here’s an interview I did with a student about how she feels about Social Studies.

Q: What do you like better Social Studies or Science?    A: Social Studies

Q: Did you have fun with the dough maps?   A: Yeah, lots of fun.

Q: What was your favorite Social Studies Project?   A: The dough maps.

I also got to do an interview with the Social Studies teacher and her perspective.

Q: Do you like how Social Studies are going?    A: I love it; it was one of my favorite subjects as a kid.

Q: Do you wish you taught science or do you like teaching Social Studies?

A: I taught Science before, it was ok but I just love Social Studies

Q: Are you having fun with Social Studies, or is it hard work?

A: It is hard work, but I love it too, its fun teaching kids aboutCaliforniaand the great things it has to offer.

So you can see that fourth grade Social Studies is a lot of fun.

Murals on the Ball Walls–Sign up now

Mrs. Haugen & Mr. Crysdale are collecting volunteers to help students paint murals on all four sides of the green ball walls.  Please email Mrs. Haugen if interested:  It will be the perfect crowning project on our beautiful playground, field and track.

Speaking of the Track…

Doesn’t the field look amazing?!?!  A huge thank you to our maintenance crew!  They’ve been working weekends to finish irrigation, seed, sod and artificial turf on our campus.  The play structure irrigation and sod was a nearly final step.  We await the track installers for the final step–resealing & striping the track.  It’s the home stretch.  We can’t wait!

Tolay Park by Channing

Tolay Parkis a field trip that the first and sencond graders went on.  They went to the Pumpkin Patch and had a lot of fun.  At Tolay Park there was a corn maze, a tractor that took kids out to the pumpkin patch, and activities.  You could make candles and corn husk dolls.  You could spin wool and visit the nocturnal animals in the barn.  We had a great time there!

Hoist the Sales by Lexi

On October 7,2011, our 5th grade class went on the Alma. The Alma is  a wooden schooner boat that was built in 1891 to carry cargo. We sailed from the Sheraton to the edge of Schollenberger park. Captain Jason was our guide and taught us how to steer the boat, put up the sails and how to use a commpass. It was a super fun field trip.

Red Ribbon Week by Vivian & Charlotte

Red Ribbon Week is when we teach people about staying away from drugs.

A Buddy Red Ribbon Week Poster

This year we did activities for the week of October 24th to October 28th. On Monday the GLT announced Red Ribbon week. On Tuesday we did our recycling rooms and told the story of how red ribbon began. On Wednesday we asked for students to wear red. On Thursday classes made posters about how to prevent drugs.  There were two classes that hung a poster outside the classroom(Mrs.Rc’s class and Mrs. Cohen and Mrs.Baumann’s class). A lot of classes  put red ribbons on poles along the hallways.

Reading Intervention at Grant School

After much discussion and analysis, we have launched reading intervention this year beginning with our 1st to 4th grade students.  Tammy Jacobson, our reading specialist, and Shantina Willits, our instructional assistant, are meeting with small groups (4-5 students) focusing on early phonics, decoding and comprehension strategies.  We identify students through STAR Reading and Early STAR Literacy assessments (both through Renaissance Place) and teacher input.  For most students, a boost of intervention will put them back on the right path and for others, more extended intervention will be key.  Each group meets for 30 minutes per day with either Mrs. Jacobson or Mrs. Willits.  We are very proud of this brand new reading intervention and are monitoring student progress closely.  It is our goal to intervene early and return students to 100% classroom instruction as quickly and efficiently as possible.  And already, as of November 1, we have exited six students from intervention groups.  We look forward to continued success through the winter months and beyond.

Cool the Earth  By Nathan Turner

At our B.E.S.T. assembly this week Mrs. Frankin and Ms. Megna had their students present a skit for Cool the Earth.  Cool the Earth is a program that gets kids and families everywhere to take charrge of the planet.  For example, you could take shorter showers, or ride your bike or carpool.  You could also turn off the lights when you are not in your room and don’t forget you can recycle too!

There are many more ideas out there and there are Cool the Earth coupons to tell you more.  If your family agrees to participate in Cool the Earth, students can return the coupons to school to get a game card and possibly a prize.  Can you collect them all?

Grant Technology Committee aka Grant Geeks

Are you looking for a way to help out?  Want to get involved at Grant?  We have just the group for you!  Our Grant Geeks meet monthly to discuss the future of technology on our campus–maintenance, curriculum support, teacher training, lab replacement options, classroom technology needs, etc.  Next meeting: December 2, 2011 3:00pm, location TBD (check in at the office).

Conferences, Report Cards & the End of the Trimester

Starting November 7th parent/teacher conferences are held everyday after school.  We are so fortunate to have 30-minutes per student to discuss all the things that help make school successful–organization, social skills, academic growth, and areas of focus.  Report cards are sent home on November 18th.  Students are participating in a variety of benchmark assessment to help inform the report card, shape future instruction and celebrate growth for the 1st trimester.  Teachers make an effort to schedule sibling conferences back-to-back.  All conference days are early release for students (just like Wednesdays) from November 7th to November 18th.

6th Grade at the Ropes Course by Alyssa

6th Grade Teachers at Westminster Woods

Last week on Friday, October 21, 2011, the sixth grade went to Westminster Woods Challenge Course in Occidental. It was the first field trip for the entire sixth grade. The facilitators helped each group go across the challenge courses. They also had wierd animal names like sloth, goose, and fox. The drivers helped us get to Occidental in their own cars. Thanks parents and Ms. Reynolds and Ms. Bender!

Jog-a-thon is Coming

Stay tuned for information about the Jog-a-thon! Students will bring home details on November 10th. This year’s Jog-a-thon is December 9th.  It’s going to be great!

New Balance Girls on the Run 5k                            

Family-Fun Run/Walk

Saturday, December 3, 2011 at 9:00 AM

Rohnert Park Community Center

5401 Snyder Lane, Rohnert Park
Join us!  Lace up your shoes and join over 300 3rd-8th grade girls in this family-fun 5k open to the community.  Families, friends and strollers are welcome!  Run, walk, cheer!

To register, visit

Upcoming Dates:

  • Conferences: November 7 to November 18 (early release every day)
  • Race to Nowhere (the movie & facilitated discussion): Thursday, November 3 Grant School Multi (see website for details)  Tickets are still available.
  • Thanksgiving Break: November 21 to 25
  • Book Fair: November 29 to December 6
  • Jog-a-thon: Friday, December 9th

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