Art Show 2022

You are invited to join us for The Saklan School’s Spring Art Show on Thursday, May 12th! The event will take place outdoors at Saklan and feature artwork from all of our Preschool – 8th grade students.

Volunteers Needed

Ms. Lauren is looking for volunteers to help prepare for the art show. If you have some time to spare, she would love your help! Click on the button below to view the volunteer opportunities. 


Head for a Day

I got to be the Head of School yesterday! The first thing I did was open doors for students before school started. It was fun to greet them and see their surprised faces. Then I met with David and walked through the classrooms. 

The 6th graders had a surprise guest (the guide from their fall field experience at Westminster Woods). He was kind and silly and had their full attention. The students seemed really excited to see him again. 

On the ECE yard, Ms. Jessica was reading a captivating dinosaur book to some of the students while others played on the playground. In Kindergarten, students were writing in their journals; I loved seeing how the young kids write and I was impressed that I could read their work. A lot of them wrote about having lunch with the bigger kids in the pavilion. 

Then we went to see the box of concrete that the 1st graders had created with the 8th graders on Wednesday. It was fascinating, cool and surprising to see that the 1st graders could make that; it’s amazing what people can do when they work together! 

In second grade, the students were reading myths. Many of them raised their hands in excitement to share what they were learning. The 3rd graders were learning about Susan B. Anthony, and learning their vocabulary words. They were on task and happy to point things out in the classroom. 

We walked into the 4th grade when they were starting a new book. But what I am most excited about in 4th grade right now is the passion projects that we have just begun. Fifth grade was watching a video of their concert drumming performance. They looked focused and I think they were getting ready to share their thoughts about what they did well. 

I learned that the Head of School has to deal with a lot of urgent matters, and sometimes even crises, but they can also make decisions that make kids happy. I don’t think I want to be a Head of School, but I had fun doing it for one day!


Vanessa B.

#SaklanConfident #HeadsCorner

Guest Expert: Renata Sos

Second grade has been learning about rules and laws: why we have them and how they keep us safe. There are rules at home, at school, in our towns, state and country. The class has also been thinking about what it means to be a citizen in all these places. They have been learning about the government and how laws work and the consequences of not keeping to those laws. 

As a part of their unit, the Mayor of Moraga, Renata Sos, came to visit the second graders on Monday. She informed the students about the laws she is implementing, her daily life, her ethos of working with people (always be kind and respectful), how much she gets paid (nothing!), and how the town gets money to make the residents’ lives better. The second graders thoroughly enjoyed the mayor’s visit and learned a great deal!

#SaklanGuestExpert #SaklanAcademic

Day on the Bay

Last week the 5th graders had a great time participating in the Marine Science Institute’s Discovery Voyage. The students embarked on a four-hour expedition of the San Francisco Bay. During the trip the students learned about marine science through hands-on learning centers on board the R.V. Robert G. Brownlee.  

At the benthic (ocean floor) ecology station, the students dredged sediment samples from the bay floor using a Peterson benthic grab-claw, then washed the mud away on screens to expose native and non-native invertebrates. Students discovered a plethora of species, from Japanese spider crabs to jellies, sponges, bay shrimp, isopods, and clams, which were put into “touch-pool” buckets for students to gently handle and study. 

At the ichthyology (fish) station, students used teamwork to deploy a 16-foot net. After trawling it for several minutes, students worked again to haul the net in. Cries of ‘HEAVE-HO…HEAVE-HO” were heard yelled by students as they hauled, and much excitement followed as a leopard shark and sizable ray splashed the team that caught them. Fish were placed in buckets and students used dichotomous keys to identify them by examining their gill location, number of dorsal and pectoral fins, tail shape, coloring, eye location, etc. Additionally, adaptations for habitat and predator/prey relationships were observed, such as an intricate pattern of bio-luminescent spots on the underbelly of one fish, and the countershading of others, such as on a topsmelt. 

Meanwhile, at the plankton ecology station, the fifth graders collected a plankton sample and examined it under a video microscope, identifying many zoo- and phyto- plankton from single-cell organisms to complex species. At the hydrology station, they collected top and bottom water samples, and measured salinity, temperature and density of the bay. 

The students rotated through all stations in collaborative learning groups. The students enjoyed seeing each group’s catch, the highlights of which were leopard sharks, sting rays, halibut, and torbets. This experience brought to life many of the science concepts the 5th grade has been learning this year, centered around earth’s spheres, hydrology, life science/animal food chains, adaptations, and human impact on the natural world. 

Check out video highlights of the field experience here!


Bryan’s House

In March, Saklan’s eighth grade students took part in a service-learning field experience in Puerto Rico in which they helped rebuild homes destroyed by Hurricane Maria. Check out the blog post from the fourth day of the trip below.

March 27, 2022

Today we went to a different work site than the other days. We went to Bryan’s house and met up with William, Angel, and the team. We all had different tasks. One was shoveling sand and rocks into a wheelbarrow for Mr. Javier to take down to the cement mixer. Other people shoveled cement into buckets and then took them up to where the cement was being poured. After we did our job, we went to Maria’s house and ate a scrumptious lunch. While at Maria’s house, we reflected on our work from the past three days. William and Angel spoke about how grateful they were for us and how our work has helped their community. After we said goodbye and hopped on the bus, we went to the beach and washed away the concrete from our skin. Once we were back at the BYH (Big Yellow House), we journaled and got ready for dinner with the community. We enjoyed the food, and said our last goodbyes. Before William left, he gave out bracelets to show his appreciation and so we will never forget this experience.

-Evie, Cassidy, Thomas

Thank you Evie, Cassidy and Thomas, for sharing your experience with us.


Willing Hearts

To say Grace spent a little time curating the songs for the concert would be an understatement. From “Seasons of Love” to “People Get Ready” to Wyatt’s moving introduction to “Fight Song,” the message of the concert was clearly of hope and looking forward. I would not be surprised if Grace has spent the past two years thinking and waiting to have your children share this message of hope with us. 

Grace had a lot of support. The 3rd- 8th grade students had the privilege of learning Ghanian drumming with Isaac while Annie worked with the Owlets and Hoot Owls to prepare for their concert debut. Shay and Emily made sure every logistical detail was taken care of while Javi prepared the venue for the audience, sound, and instruments. Our teachers were flexible, patient, and helpful throughout the process. The students showed their courage by singing their hearts out.  

Pulling off a whole school concert is not a task for the faint of heart. Executing it outdoors – in a parking lot- at the end of the rainy season (whatever that means these days) with 70% of the participants new to the activity- the word impossible comes to mind. 

But then again, “nothing is impossible to a willing heart.” And if Grace is anything, it is a willing heart. A willing heart that inspires others. 

In immense gratitude,


#SaklanCreative #SaklanCourageous

Frog Pond Subtraction

What does a song about frogs and a ruler have to do with subtraction? The Kindergarten students recently enjoyed hearing a song and watching a video about frogs jumping one by one, into a pond. Then using a paper cut out, the class acted out the song. Next, the children worked with a partner. One child set up markers and told their partner how many to take away. The other child knocked over that many markers to get the answer. The Kindergarteners used a ruler to knock over the markers. Using a ruler, which looks like a minus sign, helped give the students a concrete experience of subtracting. Finally, the cut out was used to solve equations. The Kindergartners practiced using different paper cut outs to help them gain experience with subtraction.

If you walked by the Kindergarten room recently and it sounded like the students were being loud and having fun, it was probably math time!


Pen Pals

The third graders were very excited to receive their first letters back from their pen pals last week! Saklan’s third grade class is paired up with a third grade class from Parkside Elementary School in Lawrenceville, IL through the USPS PEN PAL Project. Saklan’s third graders wrote the first set of letters and mailed them off to Illinois back in early March. Ever since then, the third graders had been anxiously waiting for a reply, and on April 11th their letters finally arrived!

Through this project students learned how to write a friendly letter with an opening and closing, as well as how to address an envelope. The class also tied in some geography as they used a map to see where their pen pals live.

The third graders have already written their second letters back to their pen pals and hope to hear back from them soon!


State of the School

On Thursday, April 14th, Saklan hosted its annual State of the School presentation over Zoom. Through highlights of the year, we shared how Saklan delivers on our mission to Think Creatively, Act Compassionately and Live Courageously. In addition, a portion of the presentation addressed the school’s successes in our fundraising efforts and the overall solid financial health of Saklan. Lastly, we gave a short preview of things to come in the future, including strategic initiatives and our WASC/CAIS accreditation process. If you would like to view the State of the School presentation, click here.

Celebrating Saklan’s Teachers

Teacher Appreciation Week is the week of May 2nd – 6th. One of the beloved Saklan traditions is themed potluck lunches from the parent community, making the week extra special for our incredible teachers and staff! We still need a few main dish sign-ups on Monday, May 2nd, Wednesday, May 4th, and Thursday, May 5th. Please take a look at the Sign-Up Genius and have fun in the kitchen to celebrate our teachers:

Additionally, you should have received emails from your Room Parents to fill in thank you notes on Kudoboard for each teacher and staff.  Please be sure to have this done by Monday, April 25th. 

If you have any questions, please email Teachers Appreciation Committee Chair Shannon O’Connor at or PA President Sandy Lo at


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