Tuesday, February 10

A TO Z: Saving Battery Life

We have all been there.  You turn on your iPad in class or for a meeting, you see the icon in the corner - battery is at two percent.  What can you do to maximize that last bit of battery juice? How can you prevent a low battery situation?

Prolonging Your Battery

Here are six quick tips to help your battery last longer.

1. Identify Culprits

A new feature in iOS 8 allows you to view the apps are using the most battery life.  Click on Settings —> General —> Usage —> Battery Usage.  Apps that are using up your battery life should be closed when not in use or deleted if they are not essential.

2. Turn Off Background App Refresh

Some apps run in the background even when you are not actively using them.  This is convenient when you are multitasking, but it drains battery life. Go to Settings —> General —> Background App Refresh.  You can turn off the feature in general, or select certain apps that you would like to refresh and turn it off for others. 

3. Turn Off Data Push or Fetch Email Less Often

If you are using the Apple Mail app to check your email, you can manage how often the app will connect to the mail server and search for new messages, called Data Push or Email Fetching.  How often the app fetches email will affect your battery life.  To adjust these settings, go to Settings —> Mail, Contacts, Calendars —> Fetch New Data. If the Push setting is switched on, your iPad will connect to the server frequently to find new data.  Turn this feature off to save battery life.  You can then select how your data will be fetched for each account.  To save battery life, select the Manual option - data will only refresh when you open the account. Alternatively, you can select Fetch, and select a fetch option that is less frequent, such as hourly.  

4. Use Auto Brightness or Reduce Screen Brightness

The screen display will eat up battery life if it is set to a high brightness.  You can save your battery by either using Auto Brightness or by dimming your screen when possible.  Go to Settings —> Display —> Brightness and turn Auto-Brightness to on.  You can also access your brightness quickly by swiping up from the bottom of your screen to open the Control Center.

5. Auto-Lock Sooner

Your battery will continue to drain while your iPad is on.  Using the auto-lock feature will put your device to sleep and save on battery.  You can adjust how quickly this will occur in Settings —> General —> Auto-lock.  Use a quicker auto-lock to save on battery life.

6.  Turn Off Parallax

The feature that makes the wallpaper appear like it’s moving behind your apps is called parallax. Whether you find this to be distracting or want to reduce the huge battery drain it causes, you can turn it off. Go to Settings —> General —> Accessibility and switch Reduce Motion to on.

I hope these tips are helpful in ensuring your iPad is fully functional when you need it the most! I would like to know your thoughts and ideas regarding saving the battery life for an iPad. Please feel free to contact me at: rosborne@fairmontschools.com. 

Contributed by Natasha, Fairmont Private Schools
Image from Freepik.com 

Thursday, February 5

HOW TO: Helping Students Prepare for the Next Grade

Having a daily routine of reading, writing, and practicing math facts at home significantly helps a child prepare for the next grade level. Here are some recommendations for parents to help their children confidently make the transition.

-Encourage your child to read books that appeal to his/her interests. For children who cannot yet read on their own, being read to aloud by an adult or older sibling is a wonderful way to finish a busy day.
-Talk positively about math with younger children and provide examples how addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division are tools for solving everyday problems. Explain how math helps figure out the cost of going out for lunch, save money for purchasing a toy, and determine the cost of groceries during a trip to the market.
-Accelerated Math (AM): For older children who have a strong grasp of their basic math facts, AM is a great way for expanding their mastery of mathematics.  It enables them to review a variety of math topics in order to remain current.
-Writing is an accrued skill. Steady practice results in better writing. Parents can help their younger children foster a love for writing by encouraging them to write in a journal every day. Keeping these journal entries will help track the progression of writing skills over time.

Along with assisting in practicing academic skills, it’s equally important for parents to remember that encouragement and assurance go a long way to helping their children prepare for the next grade level.  

Contributed by Doug Fleischli, Fairmont Private Schools
Image from Scholastic 

Wednesday, January 28

CHALK TALK Learning Science at Home

It would be advantageous if children had some knowledge of science, even if they have interests outside of physics, chemistry and biology.  Students need to have a basic understanding of science to make informed decisions about their own health and their surrounding natural environment. Embracing the basic scientific concepts complements a well-rounded education. 

Parents can play a significant role in helping their children develop a curiosity and appreciation for science. There are many educational resources readily available for parents to explore. What is more beneficial than joining your child in the exploring, observing and learning about the wonderful world of science around you.  

Taking your child on a fun journey to a museum or observing nature at a park are a few of the many exciting opportunities in your community to engage in scientific exploration. For example, you and your child can take a walk on the beach and examine the diverse biosphere of a tide pool. In the comfort of your own home, you can study how water boils when it reaches very hot temperatures! You can even conduct a scientific experiment by watching how items float in your sink or bathtub! 

Everyday interactions can inspire your child to observe and appreciate the wonders of nature and science. 

Here are ideas for you to try at home:

·         Look for constellations in the night sky
o   Do you know how to describe a constellation? It is a group of stars that makes a pattern and has a name. Can you spot the big dipper in the night sky? You can familiarize yourself with different constellations, including the big dipper, by conducting a quick search online.
·         Bake a cake
o   It’s one of the first lessons in culinary school: baking is a science. Each ingredient has a job to do. Flour provides the structure, baking powder and baking soda give the cake its airiness, eggs bind the ingredients, butter and oil tenderize, sugar sweetens, and milk or water provides moisture.
·         Observe nature – different trees, rocks and leaves
o   Collect and identify leaves or rocks. Talk about the differences between the color, texture and smell of the objects you encounter! Where are they located? Do certain trees only grow in certain terrain? Do leaves change color in different seasons?
·         Learn about different animal breeds
o   Go for a walk and talk about how the dogs (or birds or cats) that you see are alike and different. Observe your favorite animal(s) around your neighborhood or park. If you love dogs, then talk about the different breeds and what that includes, such as: color of fur, size and even different barks!

Contributed by Natasha
Photo courtesy of Slate.com

Monday, January 26

SNACKTIME: Recommendations for parents to help their picky eaters eat healthy food

It is not uncommon for a parent to experience a child who is a picky eater.  This phenomenon occurs in both boys and girls regardless of ethnicity and economic background.

For example, a child might insist on eating only one particular food item at each meal or display fear when introduced to new foods. They can even completely refuse to eat the food on his/her plate.

There are a number of strategies parents can use to help their children overcome their picky eating habits.  Here are some helpful recommendations:

1. Keep Trying--Repeatedly offering a food item during mealtimes will increase the chance that the child will finally eat it. Studies show that it may take 8-15 attempts before a child will finally taste the food.
2. Involve Children in Meal Preparation and Cooking--Becoming familiar with a food item can help overcome a child’s hesitancy to try it. Studies show that when children engage in meal planning and preparation, they are less likely to be picky eaters. Children involved in grocery shopping, gardening and meal preparation will significantly increase the likelihood that they will eat the food prepared for them. 

Children can help select foods when shopping for groceries or even help create the menu. Young children can retrieve items from the pantry, garden or refrigerator. They can also help measure and stir various ingredients. Older children can help read and follow recipes.
3. Role Model Healthy Eating Habits--Children learn by watching and listening.  Parents can set a good example by eating a variety of healthy foods.
4. Be Patient Especially with New Foods--Remember, a child might taste a certain food item ten or even twenty times before eating it.
5. Make Meals More Fun—There is a variety of visual tools you can use to make nutritious meals pleasant and even exciting for children. Try using bright colors, unique shapes and special plates. Be sure to discuss the benefits of good eating right from the start. For example, children love finger foods and anything prepared in miniature sized arrangements. 

Try bite-size chunks of fruit, cheese or berries.  A colorful bowl, special plate or fancy fork can make a child feel special during meal time. You can also use seasonal cookie cutters to transform ordinary sandwich bread into special shapes for snacks or lunches.

Begin the year with strategies to help picky eaters eat right!

Submitted by

Leslie K. Kay-Getzinger, MS, RD

Regional Dietitian for Nutrition Management Services CompanyImage from Newsolio

Friday, January 16

CHALK TALK The Benefits of Studying History

As a junior high student, I was fortunate to have a theatrical history teacher who made every lesson a journey back in time. From the Roman Empire to World War II, he told vivid stories of presidents, generals, inventors, and explorers along with a host of not-so-famous people simply trying to make a living. 

From the teacher’s captivating insights “behind the text of the history book,” I learned both the triumphant and tragic sides of humanity. My teacher’s lessons offered more than a window to the past. It helped me understand the world beyond my life of family, friends, and immediate community. 

History shows how social, political, and economic actions of the past influence current news from around the world, far beyond our comfort zone. Studying history gives profound examples of how decisions by individuals hundreds of years ago still affect millions of people decades later. Records of both good and bad decisions give students in all grades models to shape their decision-making and worldview.  

History also provides students role models of character, wisdom, bravery, and good leadership. Reading about significant figures such as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who represents courage and integrity in the face of daunting challenges, illustrates a positive role model for students to look up to in their lives.

Scholars point out that the study of history fosters analytical thinking by causing students to dig deep into historical content to identify specific information for building a sound argument or making an accurate comparison between the past and present. This strengthens abilities to examine, organize, and explain factual information. These skills are essential in other academic subjects, as well as career pursuits.

Contributed by Doug Fleischli
Image courtesy of What Answered 

Wednesday, January 14

How To: The Importance of Good Manners

Good manners are important for children to learn, especially in their formative years of interacting socially. Whether it is in a classroom, playground or larger social engagements, good manners will help your child gain respect and make a positive impression. Here are some helpful tips to assist children in understanding and practicing proper etiquette. 

Practice basic courtesy – 

Say “please” and “thank you,” even to those you briefly encounter. People notice when you are courteous and respectful toward them. It sets a good impression and builds a foundation for strong character.
Hold doors open for other people – 

It is courteous to hold the door open for someone, even if they are a stranger. If you do not know the person, you can say “after you.” If you do know the person, you can address him/her by name. If you are unsure about whether or not a person would appreciate having the door held open, ask politely “Can I get the door for you?” This gives the individual an opportunity to accept or decline.

Speak politely – 

Be aware of the volume of your voice when speaking in a public setting. Keep in mind that speaking with a lower voice tone is encouraged especially in classrooms and other places where people are in deep thought. When engaging in conversations, it is wise to be a good listener and speak when it is your turn, rather than interrupting a person in mid-thought. 

Dining etiquette, chew politely – 

Do not chew with your mouth open. It is easy to forget this rule when having lunch with friends, but it is important to maintain in all social settings. Others around you might be distracted if you chew with your mouth open, and they may not be able to focus on finishing their food or conversation. 

Share food politely – 

Ask someone to pass you a dish or a seasoning. Never reach across a dish or someone else’s plate for something; instead, politely ask the person sitting next to you to “please pass” the desired item. It can be inconsiderate if you reach out for something across the table. For example, your hand might knock over a glass or graze the food on someone’s plate. 

Excuse yourself when leaving – 

Always try to say “excuse me” whenever you need to leave a table. It is appropriate for a child to ask an elder for permission to leave. This is important because leaving a table without excusing yourself might be abrupt, leaving others to wonder what happened. 

Contributed by: Natasha 
Photo credit: Hart Total Fitness

Friday, January 9


Highlights of the week: 

Junior High Spelling Bee

The Anaheim Hills Campus kicked off the year with a Junior High Spelling Bee.
Congratulations to all who participated.  Participants spelled words such as edification, gambol, phonetics, stalwart, gainsay and wraith it was a spirited competition!

1st Place - Ali A
2nd Place - Kayla T
3rd Place - Ryan Z

Our top 3 finalists will represent us in the Orange County Spelling Bee, which is the next step toward the National Spelling Bee. 

Pranav K
Dylan P
Aidan A
Sarah H
Ishaan V
Sunny Y
Mariano C
Patrick G
Ishan P
Karina P
Arjun M
Andrew Y

For exciting news and updates from the campuses, check the weekly newsletters below:

Weekly Newsletters:

December Lunch Menus: