Winter Traditions

The winter season brings not only cold weather, but also different holidays and family traditions. To celebrate each class member, the third graders created slides or posters to share about holidays and traditions that are unique to their family. They included pictures and text about winter holidays they celebrate, places they like to go in the winter,  winter activities, food they like to make in winter, and any other special family winter traditions. Each slide or poster was as unique as each student!  Check out the slides and posters the students created below.

The third graders really enjoyed learning about each other’s traditions!


Life Lessons of 2020 in a Zine

What is a zine? A zine is short for Magazine and is a self-made booklet that tells a story, informs about an issue, and is fun to make! It’s origin dates back to 1776, with Thomas Paine’s self-published pamphlet, Common Sense, which advocated for the thirteen colonies to become independent from Great Britain

In returning from Winter Break online and entering into the new year, 1st-8th graders were asked to reflect on what lessons they learned about themselves and the world in 2020 and what they were excited about striving for in 2021. 2020 forced the world to face reality, good or bad, and with so much to learn from, the children triumphed over all of these obstacles to share what they found most rewarding, difficult, and inspiring. In seeing these zines created, we hope it inspires us all to continue to persevere, fight for justice, and take care of each other and ourselves.  

#SaklanCreative #SaklanThoughtful

Collaboration Blocks

Have you heard about Saklan’s collaboration blocks? These large blue blocks have been a favorite recess activity since they were introduced at the beginning of December.

The blocks are manufactured by Imagination Playground, and are designed to allow for open-ended play, giving children the freedom to create and pursue their own play activities. These blocks have produced numerous creations, giving our students the opportunity to not only have fun, but to further develop their logic and mathematical skills, problem solve, use their imaginations, and develop inter and intrapersonal skills.

Working together with classmates to build with the collaboration blocks has provided Saklan’s students with many opportunities for creativity, fun and learning. Check out the pictures below to see some of the creations the students have built.

The collaboration blocks were made possible by gifts to Saklan’s Annual Giving Fund. Saklan relies on the generous support of the community to provide the many extras, like the collaboration blocks, that make Saklan such a vibrant place for children to learn and develop. Thank you to all our generous AGF donors.

#SaklanCreative #MadePossibleByAGFGifts

Pumpkin Book Characters

The third graders just completed a book report project where they transformed a pumpkin into a character from their book. The students were quite creative in their use of many different materials to create the pumpkin book characters.  The third graders also used the reading strategies they have been learning in class, such as identifying character traits, using text evidence and summarizing, to complete the written portion of the project. They had a great time presenting their pumpkin characters to their classmates on Thursday and sharing their books with each other. 

Do you recognize any familiar book characters?


Rube Goldberg Machines

The third graders enjoyed learning about famous cartoonist Rube Goldberg. He is well-known for the elaborate crazy contraptions he drew of complicated chain reactions that performed a simple task. The class learned that Rube wanted to be a cartoonist, but instead went to UC Berkeley and became an engineer to please his father. Eventually, he did follow his passion and pursued a career as a cartoonist. His engineering background came in handy though, because it helped him to create designs in his cartoons that could actually work, even if he only drew them to make people laugh.

The class’s excitement to read books about Rube Goldberg tied in nicely with a weekly theme in their reading program: Inventors, explored through the genre of biography.  The class was able to relate the reading strategy of finding “cause and effect” in their stories with learning about the chain reactions in Rube Goldberg’s contraptions, since a chain reaction is really just a cause and effect.  

The third grade students were then inspired to use the engineering design process to create their own Rube Goldberg machines. Each student came up with their own design for a contraption with at least 4 chain reactions to complete a simple task. They used great perseverance to keep trying and redesigning their machines until they worked. Here are some videos of their machines in action!  


Accept Yourself and Others As They Are

Yesterday, the 1st – 8th grade students met in their first family group lesson to discuss the importance of being accepting. 

Students introduced themselves, heard a story called The Crayon Box that Talked, and then discussed the story to understand that sometimes getting to know someone or learning how unique they are can help breakdown misconceptions. While everyone of us is unique here at Saklan, it is our similarities and our differences that make us such a special school. From soccer players to cat lovers, artists and passionate young scientists; the more we listen to others, respect our differences, are kind with our words and think of others, the more accepted everyone will feel.

Students then colored their own crayon with a picture of themselves, and listed something they feel makes them special! These self-drawn crayons are to be returned to Saklan, either by the next connect day or the next swap and drop so they can be inlcuded in the Family Group posters that will be put on display in the breezeway. 

***We deeply apologize for any technical issues you suffered that may have caused stress during the Family Group time. Ms. O was not able to get into meeting rooms either as she was trying to help people. Zoom locked her out! 😦 We can only assume others were just as frustrated. If that is the case, please know your student can still draw their crayon and return them to Saklan to be included on the Family Group poster. Their teacher can help them with any instructions they need.


Saklan Happy

In an effort to do a little something fun with our Friday Flag, we asked families to create their own version of Happy by Pharrell Williams. This video certainly made everyone smile and happy this morning!

Special thanks to Noah M. (8th grade) for putting the video together!


Thank You!

The Saklan Student Council, along with our partner Pledge to Humanity, would like to thank the Saklan Community for making our food drive a huge success.  We collected 1,415 pounds of food for the Monument Crisis Center. Together we made a difference for struggling families in our county.