Wednesday, August 28

SCHOOL NEWS prep student completes prestigious biomedical research internship

Medical magnet student and incoming Fairmont Preparatory Academy senior, Megan Reddy, has pretty impressive fodder for her "What I did this summer" back-to-school essay.  She recently completed a 10-week internship through City of Hope’s Eugene and Ruth Roberts Summer Student Academy, an inquiry-based biomedical research program for exceptionally gifted undergraduate and high school students.  

The Academy gives curious and hardworking students the opportunity to learn about science by actually doing it. Unlike traditional high school or college classes where the course of study is entirely determined by the instructor, City of Hope’s summer program students select their own research project according to their individual areas of interest. Selected participants then spend 10 weeks working full-time as a member of a biomedical research team, receiving a stipend of $4,000 for their work.

Megan's research project was entitled: The Activity of SGN-35 in Conjunction with SAHA on CD30+ Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma Parental and Resistant Cell Lines.  Congratulations, Megan, for pursuing your passion for medicine and research this summer. We are looking forward to following your career as you complete our senior year and undoubtedly head off to an amazing university!

Contributed by Danyelle, Fairmont Private Schools

Monday, August 26

HOW TO habits for a happy (and healthy) school year

The new school year has started, and maybe you're like me, and are already feeling overwhelmed. Plenty of other parents are still adjusting to the routine of a new school year, so it's okay to take a deep breath and regroup.  Here are a few tips to help you stay focused on what really matters:

Serve a healthy breakfast…+lunch, snack and dinner
It may sound old-fashioned, but even modern day experts say there’s plenty of merit to making sure your child has a nutritious start to the day.  Think about ways you can pack protein, whole grains, healthy fats, and a serving of fruit into this important start to the school day.  When it comes to after-school snacks, create a kid-accessible snack area of the refrigerator for pre-washed, pre-portioned snacks like fresh fruits and vegetables, cheese, and yogurt.  A little prep time and you’ve got a week’s worth of healthy snacks lined up and ready to grab on your way out the door!  Avoid fast food at dinner time by planning your meals in advance, including shopping and advance prep work whenever possible. And don’t forget your slow-cooker--it’s a real life saver for busy families.

Support your child’s teacher
Start off on the right foot when it comes to connecting with your child’s teacher.  Teachers are professionals whose education and experience makes them uniquely qualified to provide children with the instruction, care, and encouragement they need to master academic and life skills.  Show your respect by scheduling appointments rather than “dropping in” for impromptu conferences.  Be sure to go over your child’s homework and assignments and help out on projects when your assistance is needed.  Let your child’s teacher know you value and appreciate what is truly a labor of love on his or her part and you’ll be rewarded with a partnership that helps your child thrive in the classroom.

Be positive
When talking about school, your child’s teacher or your child’s performance in school, try to be as positive as possible.  Children are great imitators and your enthusiasm will be contagious.  Cheer them on as they tackle new skills and all of the exciting “firsts” a new year brings.  Your positive attitude and loving support will go a long way to helping them overcome any anxieties they may be feeling about learning new things or making new friends.

Read nightly with your child
It’s not complicated, and it doesn’t take more than 15 minutes a day, but this simple step could have a huge affect on your child’s success in school.  Studies show that parents who read with their children, boost overall aptitude for learning, improve inter-personal skills, increase attention-span and discipline…the list goes on.  Make reading a part of your daily routine and you’ll reap the rewards throughout your child’s school career.

Keep to a strict bedtime

After winding down with a good book, it’s off to bed!  Keeping to bedtimes is important for all members of the family, especially young children whose brains and bodies use this downtime to re-group, repair and grow.  The National Sleep Foundation recommends 11-13 total hours of daily sleep (including naps) for 3-5 year-olds.

Image credit:
Contributed by Danyelle, Fairmont Private Schools

Friday, August 23


Our students looked very sharp in their new uniforms on the First Day of School! 

Highlights From This Week
60 Years of Back to School
This Tuesday marked a special moment in Fairmont's history - our 60th First Day of School! It was a very exciting day for all of our students, parents, and teachers. We loved seeing our returning students back from summer break - hearing their summer stories and seeing how much they've grown since the spring. And we were thrilled to welcome our new students and their families to the Fairmont community! Our campuses were bustling with positive energy, and our students were so excited to start learning. Thank you to all of our families for your commitment to Fairmont, and here's to a wonderful 60th Anniversary school year! 

Mark Your Calendars for Parent Night! 
Parent Night, also known as "Back to School Night," is our first big event of the school year. We encourage all of our parents to mark their calendars and attend this special evening to meet their children's teachers and hear about their plans for the upcoming school year. You will also have an opportunity to visit your campus' specialty classrooms, including the computer lab, Spanish classroom, and library, to see what your children will learn this year. 

Parent Night Dates: 
Historic Anaheim Preschool - September 4
Anaheim Hills - September 5 
North Tustin - September 6 
Historic Anaheim Campus - September 11

Wednesday, August 21

SHORT STORY first day of school

From preschool to high school, it's back to school time at Fairmont - a great start to Fairmont's 60th Anniversary school year! 

Contributed by Alyssa, Fairmont Private Schools

Friday, August 16

A TO Z saying goodbye to summer

The end of summer is such a bittersweet time for me. I love the excitement of "back-to-school" and the promise of growth and new experiences in the next grade level. But it’s still tough to box up the super-soakers, UV-beads and Model Magic. And when the tattered friendship bracelets get cut off, I know that another great Fairmont summer is coming to a close.

Summer at Fairmont Schools is about building confidence—and depending on the student, this may have an academic or social focus. To develop confidence, summer may mean experiencing or succeeding at things for the first time. At the elementary level, this may mean sharing a writing project up in front of the class or working independently in different learning stations in summer school. It may mean riding a school bus for the first time or actually being at a field trip destination for the first time without a parent! It could mean the first jump off a high dive, the first shriek on a roller-coaster or the first time petting a manta ray at the Aquarium.

Developing confidence over the summer also may mean experiencing academic success. This summer, a record number of Fairmont junior high students took advanced math courses at Fairmont Prep which will allow them to progress to the next subject level during the school year. This sense of accomplishment is the essence of what summer at Fairmont is about to me.

Just like our students, summer is a great time of learning and skill building for our faculty and staff. Fairmont teachers experienced teaching the new grade level they will teach this upcoming school year or had extra practice using Accelerated Math or technology tools. Summer Camp Counselors returned after another year of college under their belts, ready to take on new roles in teaching students and supporting families.

In my five years as Director of Summer Programs at Fairmont Schools, I’ve never experienced a summer so magical as the Summer of 2013--Fairmont’s 60th Anniversary Summer. This summer seemed to fly by...but for a few moments, time stood still. I’d like to share a few of my favorite Summer 2013 memories:
  • Sitting in on Ms. DeVane’ 6th grade Language Arts class discussion on The Giver at the North Tustin Campus. As a kid, it was one of my favorite books but I hadn’t thought about it for years. After hearing our students’ discussion of the novel, I had to re-read it myself. 
  • Seeing videos of the Jedi Training Academy taught by summer camp counselors Mr. Evan and Mr. Cody during an afternoon camp rotation. I love the creativity of our staff and the unique moments it creates for our Padawans, I mean campers! 
  • Watching Oliver in swim cap and goggles give me a huge grin and thumbs up while “body surfing” at Corona del Mar Beach. It was a perfect summer moment for him and became one for me too.
  • Hearing Mr. Al speak with a southern drawl all day on Western Wear Dress-Up Day.
  • Having a pretend “tea party” with preschool campers while waiting for their pony ride and pictures. Since I was dressed up as Snow White for Fairytale Dress Up Day, I was treated as part celebrity, part best friend by the preschoolers.
  • Pointing out sight words in Miss Dodson’s JK summer school class with “witchy fingers". Who knew plastic finger sleeves could be such fun and so educational?!

 I’ve already begun a countdown for Summer 2014…43 more weeks! See you then!

Contributed by Jamie, Fairmont Summer Programs

Wednesday, August 14

BULLETIN BOARD back to school cool

It's safe to say that back-to-school season is our favorite time of year at Fairmont Private Schools.  We are thrilled to welcome back all of our amazing teachers and staff and to say a big "Hurray" for the first day. Sending out warmest wishes to all of those school-aged children out there and to their moms, dads, and little brothers and sisters...who will one day be headed back to school too!  Here are a few of our favorite back-to-school pins from Fairmont's Pinterest boards.  Follow us on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram (search for Fairmont Private Schools and choose your campus)...and right here on our blog for lots of inspiration all school year long!

Heart & hands classroom shot
School supplies illustration
First day photo ideas
Photo op signage
School days journal

Contributed by Danyelle, Fairmont Private Schools

Wednesday, August 7

FAIRMONT FIVE tips to beat the back-to-school blues

It's back-to-school season!  Don't you just love picking out fresh new school supplies, choosing new backpacks, buying new clothes--it's exciting, right?!  Yes and no.  There's plenty of anxiety that comes along with the start of a new school year, for parents and for children.  As with any big change, it helps to shift gears slowly.  Here are some of our tips for making your transition from summer break to the new school year a little less painful:

1. Plan ahead for the morning rush. We all know mornings are the toughest. Even if you're a morning person, juggling breakfasts and showers and's enough to push you over the edge. Take some time the night before to prepare.  Have your child lay out his or her outfit for the next day (including shoes and accessories) before bed time. Make sure completed homework and signed permissions slips have been neatly tucked away in your child's backpack. Know what you're making for breakfast and packing for lunch--and stick to the plan. 

2.Transition into the school routine. A few weeks before school starts, start adjusting bedtimes and getting back into a regular routine. For the little ones, make this transition fun by saying "we're going to start practicing for school!". Remind older kids that getting enough sleep really does make you smarter and happier at school--it's scientific fact! Build the back-to-school excitement with school supply shopping, "classroom" playtime themes, bedtime stories about school, playdates with school friends, etc. 

3.Start a unique goodbye ritual. For younger children (and maybe for you), one of the toughest parts about going back to school is saying goodbye. Instead of making goodbyes something to dread, make them special by coming up with a fun goodbye ritual that is unique to you and your kids. It could be a made-up handshake (think Parent Trap) or a whistle or a special hug. Ask your kids for their input and create a unique daily tradition that will make you both smile.  

4.Send a little love. No matter how old your child is, a heartfelt note, compliment or gesture never goes unnoticed. Sending a surprise post-it note message in your child's lunchbox or cutting his or her sandwich in a special shape or even just suggesting a spontaneous after-school ice cream date is a great reminder of how much you care. And the best part? Thinking up these little surprises will help you stay positive amid the back-to-school stress. 

5. Create a homework zone. Organized, designated study spaces are crucial to student success when it comes to homework. Be mindful about providing desk or table space for each child where he or she can work successfully. Some children like privacy, others like background noise, so pay attention to how and where each child works best and create learning spaces accordingly. Set up a routine of checking student's planners and class agendas daily or weekly to make sure assignments are being completed on time. Encourage students to share their homework with you and show you what they've learned. 

We wish all our Fairmont Private Schools families a wonderful, blues-free back-to-school season! 

Image from

Contributed by Alyssa, Fairmont Private Schools