Tuesday, March 10

CHALK TALK: The Value of Grandparents

While taking a young granddaughter to the zoo, a grandmother affectionately imparts lessons about the importance of education and hard work. In a similar setting, a grandson learns from his grandfather about how his grandparents endured to build a life and legacy for their children in the U.S.  These lessons and stories are invaluable for children.

Passed down like family possessions, they provide children with cultural pride, security, and a sense of identity.  Some believe that the relationship between children and their grandparents is only second in importance to that between a child and their parents. Here are a few of the many reasons why grandparents are more important than ever: 
  • ·      Grandparents Make a Difference in their Grandchildren’s Lives
Involved grandparents make a big difference in the lives of their grandchildren. Some grandparents see their grandchildren at least once a week. Some grandparents help teach their children to read, write, and spell. Others influence their grandchildren’s imagination by taking them to museums, plays, and concerts. For example, what better way for a child to spend an afternoon than by taking a stroll with a grandparent in the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History! Exploring the museum and learning about dinosaurs and our natural world can leave a lasting impression on a child. It can open a door for a possible future in archaeology or anthropology! This time and care contributes to happier and healthier grandchildren.  
  • ·      Grandparents Have Valuable Experience
When you think about it - who could better provide advice and help in raising children than someone who has many years of experience? Grandparents put their past parenting experience to use in their interactions with grandchildren. They can influence the lives of their grandchildren with values and behaviors. The advice, stories, and lessons imparted to them leave a lasting impression, one that will hopefully have a positive influence and be passed on again and again to future generations.

At the end of the day, the saying rings true, it really “takes a village to raise a child.” What better way to raise your child than with the support and unconditional love from grandparents!

Contributed by Natasha, Fairmont Private Schools

Thursday, March 5

CHALK TALK the benefits of students exploring robotics

It’s a sunny day as a team of Fairmont Prep students known as the “Huskyteers” prepare a wireless operated robot, nicknamed “Balto,” to compete at the Regional FIRST Robotics Competition. Using laptops and power tools, they work together to make sure Balto performs its required task.  Balto must lift, move, and stack items that represent litter in a pre-determined arrangement.

The process of building a robot offers students a rewarding experience regardless of their academic backgrounds and experience.  They form a diverse team exchanging knowledge, skills, and ideas with the goal of creating an reward-winning robot.

Teachers see robotics as a perfect example of cutting-edge learning that is completely student-driven. When students focus their energy on building a robot, they demonstrate problem-solving abilities, apply academic knowledge, integrate skills, and collaborate within a group. It’s a microcosm of a real world entrepreneurial start-up.  

The experiences in designing, building, and testing a robot bring to life mathematics, computer science, engineering, and other tech savvy topics. The finished robot provides students a gratifying source of accomplishment. Most of all, they become confident in using these academic subjects to overcome many obstacles, not only for technically-based challenges, but life as a whole.

Contributed by Doug Fleischli, Fairmont Private Schools

Tuesday, March 3


Contest Entry Proposes Product Packaging Rating System to Help Consumers Select Products with Less Packaging Waste

Fairmont North Tustin third grader Kamran Ansari has a special connection with Disney's 2015 Oscar-winning animated feature Big Hero 6. He is among the winners in the DISNEY BIG HERO 6 – XPRIZE CHALLENGE.  The contest, held late last year, encouraged children between the ages of 8 and 17 to use science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics to develop innovative approaches for addressing global problems.

For his winning entry, nine-year-old Kamran proposed a product packaging rating system to inform consumers of the wastefulness of a product’s packaging. His system allows consumers to make environmentally friendly decisions by choosing products with less packaging waste.  Click here to see the winning video entries.
“I selected this topic because I thought packaging is having a big, negative impact on the environment, and I want to find ways to solve this problem,” said Kamran. “I am extremely honored and grateful for having won. I can’t believe it!”

“Kamran is a prime example of the amazing things children can do when they build upon their ingenuity and express their passion,” said Kristen Jansen, Campus Director for the  Fairmont North Tustin Campus. “We are proud of his achievement and pleased to provide a learning environment for him and his classmates to make a positive impact in the world.”

Contributed by Doug Fleischli, Fairmont Private Schools

Friday, February 27

FRIDAY FOLDER february 27

Highlights of the week:

Junior High Drama Production of Seussical, Jr. is a Block Buster at our Anaheim Hills Campus SMASH hit!

Junior High Drama performed four shows of Seussical, Jr. this week and everyone loved it! Our students dazzled us with their amazing talent. They sang and danced through stories of the Cat in The Hat, Jo-Jo, Horton the Elephant, Sour Kangaroo, Gertrude McFuzz andMaysie.  Our students are truly talented, and they loved entertaining us with their gifts!
During the past three months of rehearsal, the students of the 8th period drama class learned theatre disciplines, including but not limited to, improvisation, mime, character/scene study technical theatre, and much more.The performances were a compilation of what they have learned.~Mr. Halkyard

Monday, February 23

HOW TO: Teach Children Responsibility

Your teenage son comes home from school and calls you to his room for help. He has placed all his dirty clothes in the laundry basket and he needs help carrying it all to the laundry room downstairs.

Your daughter in kindergarten finishes dinner and puts her dishes in the sink.

Teaching children responsibility fosters valuable life skills. Responsibility is not just about completing a task -- it is about attitude. Teach your children about taking action and being proud of themselves. Once that attitude becomes ingrained, children will begin to take responsibility for tasks without reminders from their parents and they will feel the sense of accomplishment that comes from completing tasks independently.  

Here are some helpful tips on how to incorporate responsibility into your child’s life:

Begin Early
It may be difficult to suddenly expect responsibility from your teenager if that has not been the norm for them during their younger years. It’s much easier if you teach responsibility from the start. For example, you can begin by teaching your toddler to not only play with their toys, but to also put them back in their place when they’re done playing.

Set a Good Example
One of the best ways to teach responsible behavior is to be a good role model. For example, you can always try to place your personal belongings in their proper places – such as always hanging your coat on the coat rack or placing your keys in the key tray. You can always clean up after yourself in any situation – such as placing your plate and eating utensils in the sink after each meal. While you complete your tasks, talk about it with your children: “Let’s go put our dishes in the sink and wash them up!” 

Let Them Help You 
Invite your child to participate in helping you complete tasks. This will both reinforce the positive sense of accomplishment and can also serve as quality time spent together. Make the task a part of a team effort and help them feel that they have ownership so they feel valued and proud. Do it with a smile! 

Show Them the Way 
Help your child along by giving tasks according to his/her skill level and be there to provide them guidance and assistance. For example, you can provide your toddler with a toy bin and then demonstrate where the toys go after they are done playing with them. As another example, provide your elementary aged child with a clothing hamper in their room. It is important for parents to pave the way by providing both guidance and the necessary tools to succeed.

Remember to be positive and consistent when helping your child manage responsibility. Teaching responsibility may not be easy, but it will provide your child with a feeling of accomplishment and with skills and good habits that will last a lifetime.

Contributed by Natasha, Fairmont Private Schools
Image from: About Parenting

SNACKTIME Why fruits and veggies are important during the flu season

To keep your family in tip-top shape during the cold and flu season, make sure everyone is giving their bodies the resources they need to fuel their immune systems. This means fresh, healthy food!

Fruits and vegetables contain essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals (plant compounds) that help children stay strong and healthy.  These nutrients support skin, eyes, heart, and the digestive system. Did you know that eighty percent of our immune system is located in our digestive system?

Color Counts!
Try a variety from the rainbow colors listed below to help support your family's immune systems.

-Green fruits and vegetables such as broccoli, sugar snap peas, Brussels sprouts, green cabbage, green beans, celery, spinach, kale, and bok choy.

-Red fruits and vegetables contain beta-carotene, known to be involved in the immune function. Some examples include cherries, cranberries, pomegranate, red/pink grapefruit, red grapes, watermelon, beets, red onions, red peppers, red potatoes, rhubarb, and tomatoes.

-Orange and yellow fruits and vegetables contain vitamin C and alpha/ beta-carotenes, which protect cell membranes. Examples include oranges, tangerines, papayas, apricot, cantaloupe, grapefruit, mango, papaya, pineapple, carrots, yellow pepper, yellow corn, squash, and sweet potatoes.

-Purple and blue fruits and vegetables contain anthocyanins and vitamin C. They have antioxidant benefits and help protect the body’s cells. Examples include blackberries, blueberries, plums, raisins, eggplant, and purple cabbage.

-White, tan, and brown foods contain flavonoids that protect cell membranes, which help support heart health and reduce cancer risks. Examples include bananas, pears, dates, cauliflower, mushrooms, garlic, onions, parsnips, turnips, white-fleshed potatoes, and white corn.

School-age children need between 1 1/2 to 3 cups of vegetables and 1 to 2 cups of fruit each day. A few bites at every meal can easily add up. Kids love to dip! Have sliced fresh fruit or vegetables ready for after-school snacks. Try dipping veggies or fruit in yogurt, bean dip, peanut butter, or low-fat salad dressing.

Submitted by Leslie Kay, MS, RD
Regional Dietitian for Nutrition Management Food Services

Image Credit: Everyday Families

Friday, February 20

FRIDAY FOLDER february 20

Highlights of the week:

Courtnie B. Wins CASTO Art Competition
Each year, the Orange County Chapter of the California Association of School Transportation Officials (CASTO) holds a poster contest. This year, the theme was "Bully Free Zone."  Courtnie B., under the tutelage of Mrs. Gormin, entered the CASTO contest with her "Bully Free Zone" entry, and she came in first place for the Local Chapter 2. Courtnie will receive a class party and $25 spending money. Way to go, Courtnie!

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