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Monthly Archives: November 2013

Week Ending 11/22/13


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Book Character Dress Up Day

On Wednesday, November 27th we are having our school-wide book character dress up day. Students are encouraged to dress up — something simple! — as a character inspired by their favorite book. For example, if they want to be Clifford The Big Red Dog — dress in red and cut out a tail from red construction paper. We will have name tags we can use as well to help clarify characters, too!

Pennies for Patients

Counting Change

It has been heartwarming to see children come to school proud of the fact they are raising money for a great cause.  Many have approached me saying they have emptied their own piggy bank to help kids fighting cancer.  An added benefit is that teachers have been incorporating money counting into a math center.  We have extended our deadline to Monday November 25th so please continue to collect spare change for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) .  So far we have raised a total of $404.63!

Cards for Soldiers

Dear Polaris Families,

My name is Lucas and I am a student in Miss Petzold’s class. I am working on a blue star project for karate class and over the past year have worked to complete 28 random acts of kindness. As one of my final acts of kindness for this project I am collecting and sending letters to soldiers that are away fighting for our freedom during the Holidays. I was hoping you and your families would help me out by making cards for me to send.

There will be a box in my classroom (Miss Petzold’s room) to put cards in. Please turn in all cards by the end of school on November 27th (the last day before Thanksgiving.) When making your cards please follow the rules below.

Card Guidelines:

  • You may make a card by hand or use a purchased card.
  • Ensure that all cards are signed.
  • Use generic salutations such as “Dear Service Member.” Cards addressed to specific individuals cannot be delivered through this program.
  • Only cards are being accepted. Do not send or include letters.
  • Do not include email or home addresses on the cards: the program is not meant to foster pen pal relationships.
  • Do not include inserts of any kind, including photos: these items will be removed during the reviewing process.
  • Please refrain from choosing cards with glitter or using loose glitter as it can aggravate health issues of ill and injured warriors.
  • Each card does not need its own envelope, as envelopes will be removed from all cards before distribution.

Thank you for your help!

2014-2015 Admission

Re-enrollment at Polaris for next school year will begin January 6th.  The deadline to complete the online re-enrollment process will be January 27th.  Additional instructions will be emailed in December. Please note that our age cut off has changed.  Children must turn six by September 30th.  If you have any questions, contact Liz Putnam.  More detailed information can be found at https://polarischarter.wordpress.com/admissions/information/

If you know of families interested in Polaris, attending one of our upcoming Information Sessions is mandatory.  The dates and times are:

  • Monday December 9th at 6:30pm
  • Wednesday January 8th at 6:30pm
  • Saturday January 25th at 10:00am and 1:00pm
  • Sunday February 2nd at 1:00pm

At the end of each session, we give prospective parents a tour of our school.  Last year, these tours were led by students with an adult helper and it was fabulous to hear about Polaris from the kid’s perspective.  We are looking for student and/or parent volunteers for this year.  The sessions last approximately 1 1/2 hours and Mrs. Putnam will direct the students.  Please contact Liz at e.putnam@polarischarterschool.org if your child is interested in helping.

Polaris Star Students

Star Students

Star Students

Six more student’s received certificates for showing good citizenship this week. Congratulations to: Ally, Bobby, Ethan, Josie, Jeffrey and Nithin!

Box Tops

We are holding a BOX TOP contest at the Polaris Charter School!  The class that turns in the most BOX TOPS by December 20th will earn an extra recess/play period and a Box Top trophy to be proudly displayed in the classroom! The winning class will be announced in the first week of January.  Our goal is to raise $1000 in free money for our school for the year.  We hope to have 100% participation, even if its just one box top per student.

Clip, save and submit all BOX TOPS for Education certificates and bonus certificates that you will find on many household and food products you already buy!  Each unexpired box top is worth 1 point (exception is bonus coupons-10 bonus box tops = 10 points) which is $.10 to the school.  So every 50 box tops turned in = 50 points = $5 to the school.

Thanks for supporting our school!  Together, we can make a big difference!  Keep clipping Box Tops and send them to school – we have two submission deadlines a year – Nov. 1 and Mar. 1 but we keep collecting all year round!

Any questions please email karynmisenheimer@gmail.com

Boats

Tinfoil Boats

Tinfoil Boats

Students in Ms. Petzold’s class set sail working in groups to make tinfoil boats designed to hold as many pennies possible. The activity worked on collaboration, critical thinking, and beginning design skills. After each group tested their first boat, they discussed which boats held the most pennies and why. The students then had the opportunity to re-design a boat with their team to try to make a design that would hold even more pennies. One boat held over 100 pennies!

PEF News

Pizza Fridays are a hit with the students!  Monthly order forms are available (click here) and are December’s is due on Thursday, December 5.  There will be 3 Pizza Fridays in December.  We are now able to accept checks, made payable to the PEF, for pizza orders. Weekly orders are still accepted.

Requests

  • We need volunteers!  Click here to view the opportunities to help us.
  • We are looking for donations of tissues and Clorox wipes for the school 

Comfy Reading Day

Students in Ms. Haynes class reached their goal for keeping classroom volume down and earned a comfy reading day! On Wednesday the classroom was transformed into a sea of ‘forts’ where students relaxed in a cozy space in their PJ’s, with pillows, stuffed animals and a book .

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Week Ending 11/15/13


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Cancellation/Delays

photoAs winter weather is approaching, this is a good time to review Polaris Charter School’s school cancellation/delay policy.  Our school follows the Manchester School District’s weather-related decisions;  if they are closed/delayed we are too.  Cancellations or delays will be announced before 6:30 a.m. on the following radio and TV stations:

WZID-FM (95.7)                     WMLL-FM (96.5)

WGIR-AM (610) & FM (101.1)         WMUR-TV Channel 9

We also typically send an email and post it on the PEF Facebook page.  On occasion, Polaris may make an independent weather-related decision, as our students come from many towns and cities in New Hampshire. In such instances, the radio and TV stations mentioned above will carry any special announcements for Polaris Charter School. Parents are encouraged to use their own discretion in commuting on days with snow or icy conditions. If you decide that travel conditions are too hazardous, whether or not school has been delayed or cancelled, your child(ren) will be given an excused absence. If Polaris is in session, weather-related absences should still be called in to the School Office and followed up with a written excuse, signed by the parent/ guardian.

If there is a delayed opening for the Manchester School District on a Wednesday, Polaris Charter School will be closed.

Pennies for Patients

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Link Pattern Greeting

Please remember to collect spare change to donate to Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) .  So far we have raised a total of $123.12.  We will be collecting coins until November 22nd. If your child’s box is full, we have collection boxes in each classroom. They can empty it there and bring it back home. The classroom that collects the most change gets a pizza party!

 

Work Day

On Saturday from 1:30-4:00 we will have a Work Day at Polaris.  Please come help us clean/organize the furnace room, unpack and distributing chairs and  assemble and install shelving. After, you can have a meal and relax at the Thanksgiving Potluck dinner!

Polaris Star Students

Star Students

Star Students

This week’s good citizens are: Charlotte, Emmy, Lexi, Navaeh, Sirus and Tazha. Congratulations!

Recess

Our policy for recess is to take the kids outdoors for fresh air and play every day possible.  If the temperature/wind chill is above 25, we will be taking the kids outside so please make sure they bring winter coats, gloves, hats, etc.  If there is snow, they will also need snow pants and boots.

Professional Development

Polaris staff and some board members participated in a workshop on Project Based Learning (PBL) from 1:30-6:30 on Wednesday November 13th.  It was given by Angela Marzilli who is a PBL/STEM specialist who works for the Portland Maine School District and does consulting.Teachers were provided with tools and resources to assist their students with developing their projects.

Collaboration

Students in Ms. Petzold’s class visited Mrs. Post’s classroom today.  Each primary student was paired with an intermediate student who taught them how to make a simple machine in the form of a pull toy.  The students worked wonderfully together!

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Remember!

Because volunteers are critical for operating Polaris, we ask every family to commit at least 10 hours a year toward making children’s experience at the best it can be!

Click here to view the opportunities to help us.

If you need more information about volunteering, contact PEF  Volunteer Coordinator, Melissa Coffey, or call Polaris Charter School Administrative Assistant, Michelle Mathieu at 603-634-0034.

PEF News

Thanksgiving Potluck

The Thanksgiving Potluck is coming up on Saturday November 16th from 5:00-8:00. Come share a meal and make new friends!

Next Meeting

The next PEF Monthly meeting will be Monday November 18th at 7:00

 

Week Ending 11/8/13


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Citizenship

photoDuring the month of November, we will be focusing on the Core Value of citizenship.  On Monday, we discussed the rights that citizens have as well as what our responsibilities are. At Wednesday’s Morning Gathering we talked about the Pledge of Allegiance and what words like republic, indivisible and liberty mean.  We recite it every day and hopefully students now have a deeper understanding of what it means.  As Veteran’s Day is on Monday, our discussion at Thursday’s Gathering was surrounding our service men and women. We read a story about a teacher named Martha Cothren who removed all the desks in her classroom and then had them returned by veterans at the end of the day to illustrate that they are the ones who have sacrificed and protected our freedom to get an education and be able to sit at desks/tables.  The students were wonderful listeners and made great contributions to our discussion!

Pennies for Patients

To correspond with Citizenship month, this week we kicked off a service project.  Each child was given a box to collect spare change that will be donated to Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) .  In 2012, approximately 12,000 new cancer cases occurred among children age 0-14.  Leukemia is the most common cancer in children and adolescents under age 20 and it causes more deaths than any other cancer in this age group. The LLS uses the funds raised to conduct research for treatment as well as to improve the quality of life of patients and their families. Please help if you can!

We Need Your Help!

As a charter school, our funding is quite low.  We depend on our family community volunteering their time so our school can function well and accomplish all of our goals.  We realize that many of you work and are not available during the school day, however there are many opportunities to help on an evening or weekend or from home.  In addition to helping our school function at its best, every hour volunteered and documented can be used to show community support when we apply for grants.  This can make a big difference in award decisions.

Because volunteering is so important to Polaris, we ask every family to commit at least 10 hours a year toward making our children’s experience at Polaris the best it can be!

Click here to view the opportunities to help us.

If you need more information about volunteering, contact PEF  Volunteer Coordinator, Melissa Coffey, or call Polaris Charter School Administrative Assistant, Michelle Mathieu at 603-634-0034.

Upcoming Work Day

On Saturday from 1:30-4:00 we will have a Work Day at Polaris.  Please come help us clean/organize the furnace room, unpack and distributing chairs and  assemble and install shelving.  After, you can have a meal and relax at the Thanksgiving Potluck dinner!

Polaris Star Students

photoThis week’s star students who demonstrated good citizenship are: Alanna, Alex, Daniel, Chloe, Raden and Tamlyn. Congratulations!

Ham Radio Operator

We have opportunity to possibly win a grant to start a ham radio club.   If you or someone you know has an operators license please contact Liz Putnam at e.putnam@polarischarterschool.org

PEF News

Thanksgiving Potluck

The Thanksgiving Potluck is coming up on Saturday November 16th from 5:00-8:00. Come share a meal and make new friends!

We have a big week coming up!

PHOTOS: The school photo proofs are in.  You should be receiving your proofs in your child’s backpack.  You pick which shot (or shots) you like best and what prints you want.  Please return the proofs and your order in the envelopes provided.  The orders are due by next Thursday, the 14th.

ART: The Original Works art fundraiser samples are in.  You’ll be receiving a packet in your child’s backpack.  The packet includes a preview magnet, a brochure, and an order form.  You can order any of the items shown with your child’s artwork on it.  If you want to keep the magnets, they cost $6 each.  If you do not want to purchase the magnet, please send it back in with your child.  The orders for this are also due next Thursday November 14th.

SCRIP: Scrip order forms went out last week.  We are planning an order that will get cards back in time for Black Friday.  Please think about using Scrip for the Holiday shopping you plan to do as well as giving cards for holiday gifts.  Gift cards also make great teacher presents!  You can also order online at shopwithscrip.com, and use our code number 4885D78934971.  Scrip orders are due next Thursday as well.

Next Meeting

The next PEF Monthly meeting will be Monday November 18th at 7:00

Missing email messages: Some folks have expressed concerned that they’re not getting all the messages about important stuff.  From now on, all messages from members of the PEF Executive Board will be coming from PEF@polarischarterschool.org.  This includes messages about events, enrichments, meetings, and volunteering.  Please make sure that this address is in your accepted senders list.

Reminders

  • There will be no school on Monday, November 11th in recognition of Veteran’s Day
  • Please remember to sign up and volunteer.  We are asking for each family to contribute 10 hours this year (though many of you have done WAY more!)
  • Please look through the lost and found while you are at school

Kris Wine

The results are in and Polaris has won $2000 to put toward our art program!  Thank you everyone who voted.

Intermediate Learning Celebration

Students in Ms. Haynes, Mrs. Post’s and Ms. Sargent’s class had a learning celebration to showcase their first projects.  They used the essential question “How has early American history affected your life today?” to guide their work.  Students used their own interests in areas such as science, sports, music, art and various mediums to illustrate the influence of history on today. There were posters, powerpoint presentations, plays, puppets and more. As you can see from the photos, the students were very engaged and excited to share their projects with others.IMG_1348IMG_1349IMG_1351IMG_1352IMG_1354IMG_1355IMG_1358IMG_1359IMG_1360IMG_1361IMG_1362IMG_1365IMG_1367IMG_1369IMG_1373IMG_1375IMG_1379IMG_1380IMG_1381IMG_1388IMG_1394

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Week Ending 11/1/13


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Important!

On November 7th, House Bill 435 is up for Executive Session.  This is the bill that would fund public charter school students at 50% of the state’s average tuition instead of the 40% we currently receive. This bill would result in over $130,000 of increased funding for our school!

photo 2Please take a moment to click on the link below, fill in your zip code, and use the opportunity to include a personal and positive comment in support of HB 435.   Charter school families are small in number (at a state level) but together will have a powerful voice.   It is important to keep our messages positive and productive– please focus on Polaris and the vital role Charter schools play rather than making any negative comments about local school districts, etc.

Please note that you will need to use your nine digit zip code separated with a dash i.e. 00000-0000.  A simple Google search will tell you what the additional four digits for your zip code are.  There are so many House Representatives that we need the extra digits to make sure it goes to the Representative that covers the correct constituent. Please take a moment to look them up and give Polaris voice at the State level!

Please click on the link below.  Remember that some suggested talking points are listed below the link.  Please forward this email to any NH residents of voting age who support the Polaris Charter School and/or Charter schools in general.  Think of neighbors, co-workers, friends, and family members.  Let’s rally behind this opportunity to bring about a real improvement to our funding situation!

Here is the link:

http://salsa.publiccharters.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=9419

Some talking points to use in comments, or just share your own personal experience:

Please support increased funding for NH Public Charter Schools by voting forward
the policy of HB 435 giving NH public charter students 50% of the state
average.

Why?

  • NH Public Charter Schools Students are the Lowest Funded Public Charter School students in our country at $5,498.30/ student. HB 435 would provide $6,579.57.
  • The national average is 80% for the amount of tuition following from the student’s district of residence.
  • The Ball State Report: Charter Funding Inequity Persists; Ball State University May 2010. Average charter school underpaid $2,247 of their district funding nationally or a 19% funding disparity.
  •  NH Public Charter School students currently receive $5,498.30/student . That is 40% of the state average of $13,159 minus transportation or a 60% funding disparity.
  • NH Public Charter schools receive no additional funds or stipends for facilities, transportation or catastrophic aid.
  • Free and Reduced Lunch (FRL) differentiated aid formula was drastically reduced and full funding for a full day of kindergarten was halved from, $5,450 to $3,725. This new formula only affected public charter schools and districts funding levels were frozen at the 2010-11 levels
  • Supporting Public Charter School Options Fuels Economic Development for NH. NH charter schools currently directly employ over 260 full-time employees and 200 part time employees in 22 facilities throughout the state.  The number of indirect jobs in accounting, janitorial and consumer products has not been calculated.
  • The New Hampshire Public Charter Schools Contribution to Dropout Prevention. NH Public Charter Schools Create Innovative Public Education Options to engage more students in their learning.  Since their inception in 2004 the state authorized public charter schools have graduated over 700 high school students.

THANK YOU for your time and attention to this effort!!!

Polaris Star Students

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Star Students of the Week

This week’s star students who showed the value of community are: Ava, Bindhi, Charlotte, Josiah, Madison, Sarah and Tia. Way to go!

Egg Drop

photo 2photoStudents in Mrs. Dudley’s class worked  to construct a birds nest that could protect a falling egg from various heights. They could only use straws, duct tape and one of the following; felt, sponge, Popsicle sticks, or styrofoam. Some students’ nests protected eggs dropped from eight feet!

Ooblecks

Oobleck 3Oobleck 1Ms. Petzold’s students did a fun science experiment making Oobleck made from cornstarch and water.   When you tap on it’s surface it feels hard yet if you slowly dip your fingers into it they slide through it. Is it solid? Is it liquid? Is it both? Can it be both?

PEF News

Thanksgiving Potluck

The Thanksgiving Potluck is coming up on Saturday November 16th. Come share a meal and make new friends! Keep an eye out for a link to a sign-up soon.

Original Works Fundraiser

The Original Works art fundraiser packets will be coming home soon. We hope to have them next week.  The art looked great when we packed it up to send, we hope you’re excited to see the results!  The packets will include a magnet with your child’s artwork on it to give you an idea of what the products will look like. The magnets need to be purchased to be kept.  If you don’t want the magnet, PLEASE send it back to school with your child. Any magnets not returned and not paid for will have to paid for by the PEF. Thank you!

Next Meeting

The next PEF Monthly meeting will be Monday November 18th at 7:00

Reminders

  • There will be no school on November 5th as parent-student-teacher conferences will be held
  • Sign up to volunteer at conferences
  • Please look through the  lost and found while you are at school