Posted by Carol Cooper at 5/4/2012 7:00:00 AM
May 4, 2012
Tomorrow, Saturday, May 5th is our monthly work party. There are lots of satisfying projects awaiting some TLC. We have chairs that need legs glued on (bring some clamps); a lock to remove from a door; some shelving to install, a small tree to remove from the garden, etc., etc., etc. Come and work off some volunteer hours while having a good time with other WCA folks.
Two weeks from now, Saturday, May 12th we have two new fund raising opportunities for Willow Creek. If you can move quickly, you might be able to participate in both: first, at 7:30 in the morning is The Human Race. There is still time to register for this county wide, non-profit fundraising opportunity and run a 5K or walk the same distance. Your dog can also join you in this event which takes place up at the Marin Civic Center.
The second opportunity is to go the Cinemark Theater on Caledonia Street and enjoy a screening of Stories from an Undeclared War. This documentary is the story of a high school teacher and her very challenging students who discovered the power of the written word. The teacher and the film’s director will be available to answer questions after the filming. I believe this will be of interest to anyone who cares about teaching and learning as well as middle school age students. A flyer with the details is included in this packet. $12 of every $15 ticket will be given to Willow Creek so we hope to fill all 100 seats. Information is also on our website.
Two Open Houses are planned: May 23rd for grades K-4 and May 30thfor grades 5-8. Both will be from6:30 to 8:00 PM. For those of you who are new to Willow Creek this year, you will be most impressed by the excitement that students show when they are sharing samples of their work and accomplishments from this year. It’s a great evening with projects, slide shows, concerts and performances in classrooms. Come and enjoy.
You will find a letter in this packet from Mary Jane Burke congratulating you, our staff and your students for Willow Creek’s being named an Title 1 Academic Achievement Award school for the second year in a row. This means that all of our various groups of students showed substantial improvement in their 2011 STAR tests.
Speaking of STAR tests, we started our testing this week for students in grades 2 through 8. Things are going smoothly right now, but it is very important that students be at school on time, well rested and well fed! We work hard to provide your students with comfortable and quiet test taking environments and make sure that lots of exercise and fresh air follows each test taking period. However, we need your help to insure they are rested and ready for the day.
This past week we had the pleasure of seeing both ends of our school strut their stuff. On Wednesday evening, in the courtyard, our 8th graders presented a truly moving performance of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Christine Samson, an 8th grade parent, was the director, most ably assisted by Teri Alton, the 8th grade homeroom teacher and 7/8th grade English Language and Humanities teacher. Students worked with Keith Williams, known as K-dub, their art teacher to create background sets and everyone pitched in to provide props and costumes, all hand made. But the students, presented this famous tragedy with such strength and understanding that I found myself with goosebumps. I was so proud of the results of the hard work everyone put into this production---we need to remember how really capable our kids are not sell them short. It’s important to keep raising our expectations to help them begin to realize their potential.
As soon as the imaginary curtain fell on Macbeth, I darted down the hill to take in the kindergarten Cinco de Mayo celebration. Sitting quietly on the floor, with smiles on their faces were about 25 kindergarteners waiting for Senora Bravo to hit a small chime and begin their vocal concert----all in Spanish! For some 20 minutes or so, song after song, was enthusiastically shared with parents and other family members. Talk about singing for your supper----they were terrific. The potluck buffet prepared by families was also terrific.
And I couldn’t help but think how remarkable it is to see the entire road traveled from kindergarten to 8th grade and appreciate how Willow Creek supports its children every step of the way from kindergarten to graduation 9 years later. Thank you for trusting us with your children----we are honored to be partners with you in this journey.
Have a great weekend. Hope to see you tomorrow at our work party.