This week, the 8th grade went to Smitten in Lafayette to see chemistry in action. The students saw how a dream to make the best ice cream involved understanding of matter, thermal dynamics, and engineering. Smitten uses local ingredients, machines that make evenly cooled ice cream, and liquid nitrogen to ensure the smallest ice crystal formation and smoothest texture.
Students saw ice cream being made by the machines, nitrogen boiling, and enjoyed a scoop themselves. It was a very tasty and interesting field trip!
Our Director of Development, Carol Goldman, will be launching the Annual Giving Fund Campaign next week. In the next two months, you will be receiving requests to participate, and I urge you to support the work that the faculty and staff do here at Saklan. Our AGF allows us to achieve our goal of going above and beyond and accomplish things like our performing arts program, student leadership opportunities, and facility improvements like the new turf field. I can assure you that we are never short on ideas for improvement and, like all independent schools, we rely not only on tuition, but also donations to provide our students with the highest quality education. Each student at Saklan is in some way a beneficiary of the contributions that you give and all donations are tax deductible, unlike tuition.
Please remember that school will be closed next Friday, October 20 for a professional development day. This year all of our faculty will be attending a workshop on Improving Literacy Achievement at Saklan. This workshop will be led by Dr. Kathy Perez, an award-winning classroom teacher, administrator, and author who has worked with students from preschoolers to college graduates. Dr. Perez is currently a Professor of Education at Saint Mary’s College of California and is an acclaimed international educational consultant, author and motivational speaker, specializing in literacy, instructional strategies, and creative approaches to brain research, student engagement and leadership development. She will draw on material from her latest book, “200+ Proven Strategies for Teaching Reading in K-8,” to help our teachers in all disciplines make great strides in literacy achievement.
Every Wednesday throughout the school year, the Owlets and their 6th grade buddies will get together to play, go on walks, read and do art projects. Both the Owlets and 6th graders look forward to this special time together every week.
8th grade Humanities have been working on a collaborative, map-making, research exploration of US cultural geography. The students are challenged to understand how the way people live affects where they live. An important part of the assignment is learning how to problem-solve creatively and work cooperatively with others in a deadline situation. Please swing by the Humanities class next week to check the map out in person!
AT Flag this morning, our first graders shared what they had learned from their study of Communities. One of the highlights of this unit was a field trip to the Moraga Safeway Supermarket, where they were able to observe and learn about goods and services. Each student shared an important idea that they had studied. For example, Maximillian told us that “communities are where people live, work and have fun.” To make the presentation more interesting, the audience was treated to three short poems titled, ‘City, Suburbs and Country.’
Next week, we will hold our first Parent-Teacher Conference Session of this academic year. This is an important opportunity for you to learn about your child’s progress and development at Saklan. To accommodate the conference schedule, school will officially end at 12:00PM on Thursday and Friday, with the afternoon dedicated to meeting with your homeroom teacher or advisor. Please note that there will be no hot lunch on these days. The school bus will leave school at 12:00PM and follow the regular route. Arrival times can be found on our website under Transportation. Due to the conferences, there will be no bus monitor in the afternoons. We will have extended day until 6:00PM as usual, and there will be no enrichment classes on these days. All parents coming to the school for a Parent-Teacher Conference will be offered coffee and snacks provided by our Development Office.
Please remember that school will be closed on Monday for a holiday.