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Monthly Archives: October 2016

Week Ending 10/28/15

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From the Board of Trustees

The Polaris adult community of parents, staff, and friends is invited to an Open Forum with the Board of Trustees to be held on November 10th, from 7-8:30 PM. This is the first of what we hope will be a series of discussions between the Board of Trustees and the community we serve.

Our initial Open Forums will focus on the Board’s Strategic Plan, which was created to set goals to work on over the next year.  At the Forum on November 10th, we will start by sharing and asking for your input on the goals we are considering for the school Facility.

The Board of Trustees is very interested in hearing your ideas and suggestions related to the many important issues facing Polaris Charter School.  The PEF has kindly moved up and reduced their meeting time (to 6:30-7:00pm) on November 10th to increase the likelihood of parents and staff being able to attending both meetings. Watch for an e-mail coming from the new Board of Trustees Chair, Jill Cane, with more detail.

We look forward to hearing your voices on November 10th!

Great Opportunity

Polaris Charter School is now signed up as a recipient for donations solicited online through the Giving Tuesday website. (https://www.givingtuesday.org/)  Please tell your friends and neighbors to check out this site to benefit our school!

Core Value – Respect

This week, we learned the Respect Poem. It has hand motions that go along with it that you can view here.

I will value other people and I never will forget
that even though we’re different
I can still show you respect.

I will always use good manners
I’ll be careful what I say
I will treat others with dignity
in how I live each day

My character is what will make a leader out of  me
So next time crew let’s say it more enthusiastically!

Book Character Dress Up Day

On Wednesday, we celebrated Book Character Dress Up Day. Students and staff alike participated in the fun! Classes got together with their buddies and did some activities as well.

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Field Trip

Miss Haynes and Mrs. Rainey’s class went on a field trip to America’s Stonehenge in Salem, NH. They got to take a tour of the archaeological site and learned about the civilization that lived here. Students also got to take part in an archaeological dig, where they dug for pottery, polished stones and other artifacts. 

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img_3935Star Students

Congratulations to Damian, David, Emma, Kenneth, Madison, Mikail, Solana and Sophia for being chosen as Star Students!

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Weather/Recess

As 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.

Recess will be held outdoors unless it is actively precipitating or the “Feel’s Like” temperature is below 20 degrees F. Due to our limited staff, we cannot keep children inside when they are not dressed appropriately.  We ask parents to ensure that their child comes to school dressed for the weather conditions, including appropriate coats, snow pants, boots, mittens, hats, etc. Please label all clothing with your child’s name. 

Dorado’s Class Share

Mrs. Dudley’s shared what they have been working on with their Wampanoag studies. They showed their wigwam, explained the 3 sisters (the planting of corn, beans, and squash in a single mound or bed) and compared how we have many similarities to the Wampanoags.

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STEM

This week the STEM class was turned into a catapult firing range. The students put their catapults to the test by trying to hit the drum we had set out on the floor. Some of the students had this down and were able to get their marshmallows into an inverted drum that had a 5 inch opening. It was great to see the students be able to apply their knowledge of their catapult in their accuracy and repeated shots. The students were able to take their catapults home so they could share with others what they had done. Ms. Rainey’s class will do their catapult testing next week since they were out on a field trip this week. Ms. Perham’s class went the extra mile and documented how far each marshmallow went on the rainbow carpet squares.

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Good Luck Ms. Meli

This was Ms. Meli’s last week at Polaris. She has embarked a new adventure, moving to Colorado and obtaining a long-term sub teaching position. We wish her the best of luck with this transition. We have hired a new Educational Assistant. Loren Robidas will begin on Monday. Welcome to the Polaris community Loren! 

Reminders

  • There is no school Friday November 11th
  • Board Meeting November 15th
  • No School November 23rd, 24th and 25th
  • Wednesday, Dec 7th:  6-7pm  Primary Learning Celebration
  • Thursday, Dec 8th: 6-7pm Intermediate Learning Celebration. Note that this is a change we have made to our school calendar. 

PEF News

PEF Autumn Potluck- Bring a dish and join us for a special autumn pot luck!  This is a great way to connect with the Polaris community and for kids to try new foods.  Please sign up and let us know what you are bringing and let us know if you can volunteer to help.  Sign up at: https://wejoinin.com/sheets/owqsp

As always, anyone who you consider as part of the family during weekend dinners are welcome to join us!

PEF Meeting Change!! PEF Meeting will now be on Thursday, November 10th from 6:30 – 7:00pm to accommodate the Polaris Board of Trustee’s Community Forum (7-8:30pm) regarding The Strategic Plan and the goals for the Polaris Facility (the building).  Both the PEF and the Board of Trustees need to hear your voice and it is for this reason the PEF moved/shortened the PEF meeting.  We strongly encourage all parents to attend the meetings on this evening.

School Spirit Wear– School Spirit Wear is now available on line. Choose sizes from toddler to 5X. This year’s selection includes great customization options as well as new options such as coffee mugs and winter hats. There is no deadline to order. The school store is here year round. Special custom options including shirts that say Polaris Mom, Grandma, Uncle or Dad will make a great gift for the holidays! Order any time:

https://ssastores.com/polarischarterschool

Pennies For Polaris:

Once again we are asking families to dig under their seats and collect change for Polaris. As we face delays in realizing the dream playground, the PEF has recognized that for many students the classroom is their playground. We are collecting funds to fit the following new In School Enrichment mission.  Funding will be given to both individual teachers and to school wide enrichments.  The Penny drive will continue until November 7th.

The PEF In School Enrichment Mission: To enhance the classroom experience with real world, hands on interactions by providing special resources to the classroom or to the school population at large. Enrichments are intended to broaden the scope of learning, engage children in ways that reach beyond the daily classroom routines.  In school enrichment might include visitors, field trips, enhancement of short term projects with extraordinary materials and resources(purchased or leased) to support a teacher led project. Projects, visitors and facilitators associated with the in school enrichment mission can support the current curriculum or offer an educational or team building diversion from the daily school routine. While there is no set time restrictions on how long an In-School enrichment program will last, Polaris in school enrichments are not intended to be long term capital expenditures or school supply drives.

After School Enrichments

There is still space available in some of our enrichments.

The Sustainable Artist: Making Art from Trash ($68)  (Starts 11/21): This class needs more participants in order to run. Registration will not be closed at this time in order to allow more students to sign up.

Please use the following link to sign up: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScIoIfhS2YHb3v8ALupDtCZCK_0hVmqTjIqCj_mOMB6zUEe3A/viewform?usp=send_form

Destination Imagination ($170) : Registration has re-opened for students in grades 3 – 5 as we will be running two teams.  The 17 week session begins on November 10th.  In addition to the overall challenge the team selects to work on for the end competition, full will be had weekly with instant challenges.  For example, the team might build a structure that is as tall as possible that will support a baseball – with only these materials.  12 toothpicks, 5 Mailing Labels, 6 Coffee Stirrers, 3 Pieces of Paper, 2 Pencils, 3 Paper Clips, 1 Glove, 1 Plastic Bag.

Registration is open on for students in 3rd to 5th grade. Only a few 3 student slots remain. Please use the following link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSe2_PIflfu0xCB6oSYfL3aX0quSxQgFSasZqUVz61Npuihq2Q/viewform?usp=send_form

As a reminder, all enrichments over $100 can be paid for in 2 installments. Additionally, Enrichment Scholarship is available upon request. Please contact The Enrichment Team at pefenrichment@gmail.com for questions or to enroll!

Below, you can find some important dates for your School Calendar:

  • PEF Meeting– November 10th 6:30pm at Polaris
  • Board of Trustees Community Forum: Strategic Plan and the Polaris Facility: November 10th 7- 8:30pm at Polaris
  • Autumn Potluck– November 5th @ 3pm at Polaris. A wonderful shared meal Polaris Families
  • Polaris Auction!!! – March 11th

Week Ending 10/21/16

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Core Value – Respect

We tacked the issue of gossip and rumors and how disrespectful and hurtful that is to others. We first defined what each are. A rumor is a piece of information or a story that is not verified; the person telling it does not know if it’s true or false. Gossip can be true, false or a rumor. It is idle talk about the personal or private lives of others. Three volunteers helped demonstrate what can happen when you spread rumors or gossip. I poured a glitter into the first student’s hand. The object was to pass ALL of the glitter to the next person without dropping any or leaving any left on their hand. As you can imagine, this was impossible and glitter was everywhere. This is what happens to our words. Once we speak them they have been heard and they cannot be erased.

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We also discussed the similarities between glitter and gossip. Its messy, stick around, attracts attention and makes a person look bad.

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STAR Students

Congratulation to our Respectful students! Way to go: Allie, Amadu, Crosby, Irelyn, Ephrim, Joey and Teagan B.

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Weather Station

A weather station was recently installed on Polaris’s roof. Ms. V’s and Ms. Perham’s classes have a display in their room so they can graph temperature, precipitation, wind speed and air pressure. They also made their own barometers and thermometers to compare their homemade versions to the computerized one.

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Important Upcoming Events

Wednesday, Oct 26th: Book Character Dress Up Day. NOTE – We do not celebrate Halloween. We celebrate by representing our favorite books! 

Friday, November 11th – No School

Wednesday, Dec 7th:  6-7pm  Primary Learning Celebration

*Thursday, Dec 8th: 6-7pm Intermediate Learning Celebration. Note that this is a change we have made to our school calendar. 

Pavo Class Share

At Friday’s Morning Gathering, Ms. V read the book “What Do You Do With a Problem” by Kobi Ymada. It is about a child struggling with worry about dealing with a problem and what do do about it. Should he ignore it? The more he worried, the bigger it became. He finally mustered the courage to face it and discovered how capable he really was. “Every problem has an opportunity for something good. You just have to look for it.”

Pavo students then shared how they viewed problems and what they would do to solve them.

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A Message From the NH Alliance for Public Charter Schools

Many of you have seen the recent ads airing against Massachusetts charter schools and have expressed concern.  The NH Alliance for Public Charter Schools has written a letter to share with you. You can view it by clicking here.

The New Hampshire Alliance for Public Charter Schools is a non-profit, 501c3 organization working to support public charter schools in our state.  The Alliance has created a secure, online form that allows charter school supporters to receive important news & updates during the legislative session.  If you are interested in receiving these updates, you can find add yourself to the list via the following link: https://nhcharterschools.wildapricot.org/stay-informed

PEF News

PEF Autumn Potluck- Bring a dish and join us for a specia autumn pot luck!  This is a great way to connect with the Polaris community and for kids to try new foods.  Please sign up and let us know what you are bringing and let us know if you can volunteer to help.  Sign up at: https://wejoinin.com/sheets/owqsp

As always, anyone who you consider as part of the family during weekend dinners are welcome to join us!

School Spirit Wear– School Spirit Wear is now available on line. Choose sizes from toddler to 5X. This year’s selection includes great customization options as well as new options such as coffee mugs and winter hats. There is no deadline to order. The school store is here year round. Special custom options including shirts that say Polaris Mom, Grandma, Uncle or Dad will make a great gift for the holidays! Order any time:

https://ssastores.com/polarischarterschool

Pennies For Polaris:

Once again we are asking families to dig under their seats and collect change for Polaris. As we face delays in realizing the dream playground, the PEF has recognized that for many students the classroom is their playground. We are collecting funds to fit the following new In School Enrichment mission.  Funding will be given to both individual teachers and to school wide enrichments.  The Penny drive will continue until November 7th.

The PEF In School Enrichment Mission: To enhance the classroom experience with real world, hands on interactions by providing special resources to the classroom or to the school population at large. Enrichments are intended to broaden the scope of learning, engage children in ways that reach beyond the daily classroom routines.  In school enrichment might include visitors, field trips, enhancement of short term projects with extraordinary materials and resources-(purchased or leased) to support a teacher led project. Projects, visitors and facilitators associated with the in school enrichment mission can support the current curriculum or offer an educational or team building diversion from the daily school routine. While there is no set time restrictions on how long an In-School enrichment program will last, Polaris in school enrichments are not intended to be long term capital expenditures or school supply drives.

School Photos

School photo proofs by Hayward Photography went home last week.  Orders must be placed by October 24, 2016 in order to receive free shipping and be sent to the school.

After School Enrichments

There is still space available in some of our enrichments.

Pokémon Club: (Starts 10/31) Students who sign up will be given a deck as part of sign up their sign up costs.  (Parents: please note Pokemon Club will not be allowing the trading of cards in this session. It may be considered in future sessions if participants do well with following the rules of the game.)

The Sustainable Artist: Making Art from Trash ($68)  (Starts 11/21): This class needs more participants in order to run. Registration will not be closed at this time in order to allow more students to sign up.

Please use the following link to sign up: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScIoIfhS2YHb3v8ALupDtCZCK_0hVmqTjIqCj_mOMB6zUEe3A/viewform?usp=send_form

Destination Imagination ($170) : Registration has re-opened for students in grades 3 – 5 as we will be running two teams.  The 17 week session begins on November 10th.  In addition to the overall challenge the team selects to work on for the end competition, full will be had weekly with instant challenges.  For example, the team might build a structure that is as tall as possible that will support a baseball – with only these materials.  12 toothpicks, 5 Mailing Labels, 6 Coffee Stirrers, 3 Pieces of Paper, 2 Pencils, 3 Paper Clips, 1 Glove, 1 Plastic Bag.

Registration opens on Saturday, Oct 22nd for students in 3rd to 5th grade. Please use the following link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSe2_PIflfu0xCB6oSYfL3aX0quSxQgFSasZqUVz61Npuihq2Q/viewform?usp=send_form

As a reminder, all enrichments over $100 can be paid for in 2 installments. Additionally, Enrichment Scholarship is available upon request. Please contact The Enrichment Team at pefenrichment@gmail.com for questions or to enroll!

Below, you can find some important dates for your School Calendar:

  • PEF Meeting– November 10th 7pm at Polaris
  • Autumn Potluck– November 5th @ 3pm at Polaris. A wonderful shared meal Polaris Families
  • Polaris Auction!!! – March 11th

 

 

 

Week Ending 10/14/16

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Core Value – Respect

“Respect is a two-way street, if you want to get it, you’ve got to give it.”
– R.G. Risch

This week we read different scenarios and then discussed how we could handle them with respect. Some of the students’ suggestions were:

1. Someone on the school bus is saying unkind words to another student. What
should you do?
  • Ask the person saying mean things to stop
  • Tell the bus driver
2. One of your classmates shares a story you have already heard many times before.
How should you react?
  • If it is just the two of you, tell them kindly that you remember them telling it before. If you are in a group, take them aside and talk to the privately
3. The park is closed for construction and the sign says “Keep Out!” Your friends want to play
anyway. What should you do?
  • Stay out
  • If your friends go in anyway, tell an adult since it might be unsafe
4. Your teacher brings in a very special souvenir from her vacation. She allows it to be passed
around the classroom. How should you handle the special item?
  • Be very careful
  • Do not grab for it

STAR Students

Our STAR students this week were: Deepthi, Lilly, Nadia, Maru, Tyler, Leo and Katie. Congratulation for showing such Respect!

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STEM

This week in STEM we went over Punkin Chunkin and how it demonstrates multiple physics principles. In the spirit of Punkin Chunkin we are going to be building catapults in all the classes. Depending on the age of the group we will build accordingly. Some students said they would like to work alone and other wanted to work in groups.

I am using the input from the classroom teachers to make sure that students are challenged by the build. This build will let the student bring together what they have learned so far in both their regular class and in STEM.

Students will be able to experiment with how variations in the build effect both the stability of the catapults, range, and accuracy.

The catapult project will be a two week project. The first week will be the build phase and testing. In the second week we will test the catapults for both range and accuracy. We will collect data and based on ability classes will review this data with graphs.

A key concept that I have been stressing is consistent input should result in a consistent output. Ideally scientist try to limit the variables in an experiment so they can determine what is really happening. Our hope is that the students will see this in action and have fun in the process.

At the end of the second week students will have the opportunity to bring their catapults home.

The basic build consists of using chopsticks, plastic spoons, and rubber bands.

Each mini catapult is made up of 6 chopsticks to make up the frame held together with rubber bands at each corner. The spoon is attached to another chopstick to make the launching surface and arm. Then the arm is attached to the frame with a band and another band is used to produce the power to launch.

I picked chopsticks due to their size but, the frame could be made of other items like pencils.

Planned ammo will be mini marshmallows. I already have safety glasses to make sure that eye protection is observed as safety has been stressed since our first class. There are a few kids that say that the glasses are small, but I have had them for an entire class session without issue.

There were some students upstairs that wanted to work in groups. These groups would be able to work on larger catapults will be constructed with components proportional to the number of students.

I am looking for donations of:

Chopsticks
Rubber bands in various sizes including some large
Sturdy plastic spoons
Masking tape
As always soda cans, large cardboard boxes, tube rolls, and newspaper are still on the wish list.
If you need something to do this weekend there is a local chunk event .

Important Upcoming Events

Wednesday, Oct 26th: Book Character Dress Up Day. NOTE – We do not celebrate Halloween. We celebrate by representing our favorite books! 

Friday, November 11th – No School

Wednesday, Dec 7th:  6-7pm  Primary Learning Celebration

*Thursday, Dec 8th: 6-7pm Intermediate Learning Celebration. Note that this is a change we have made to our school calendar. 

Sculptor Class Share

Student’s in Mrs. Rainey’s class worked on Respect poems in class this week. Several students shared their’s at Morning Gathering on Friday. Ask you student to share theirs with you!

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Book Buddies

Book Buddies has begun! Mrs. Fesh and Mrs. Rainey’s class started book buddies this week. Students completed an activity where they learned more about their buddy. They worked on a Venn diagram that showed their similarities and differences. 

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PEF News

School photo proofs by Hayward Photography went home this week.  Orders placed by October 24, 2016 will receive free shipping and be sent to the school.  Please contact your child’s teacher if  you did not receive your child’s proof’s. 

There is still space available in some of our enrichments.

Pokémon Club: (Starts 10/31) Students who sign up will be given a deck as part of sign up their sign up costs.  (Parents: please note Pokemon Club will not be allowing the trading of cards in this session. It may be considered in future sessions if participants do well with following the rules of the game.)

The Sustainable Artist: Making Art from Trash (Starts 11/21): This class needs more participants in order to run. Registration will not be closed at this time in order to allow more students to sign up.

Please contact The Enrichment Team at pefenrichment@gmail.com for questions or to enroll!

Below, you can find some important dates for your School Calendar:

  • PEF Meeting– November 10th 7pm at Polaris
  • Autumn Potluck– November 5th @ 3pm at Polaris. A wonderful shared meal Polaris Families
  • Polaris Auction!!! – March 11th

 

Week Ending 10/07/16

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Core Value – Respect

This month’s Core Value relates directly to our School Rule of Treating Ourself, Others and Our Environment Respectfully. We started off by discussing what Respect looks like and sounds like. The next day we watched a video by the fabulous Kid President that reinforced this entitled “Twenty Things We Should Say More Often.” You can view it by clicking here.

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On Thursday we did at experiment at Morning Gathering. It involved a bowl of water, pepper, a bar of soap and sugar. The pepper was sprinkled liberally on the water. It represented all of the people with whom students interact such as family, friends, teachers. The soap represents hurtful words, unkindness and disrespectful actions. When the soap was dipped into the water and pepper, the pepper moved away from the soap to the sides of the bowl. When we are hurtful or unkind to others they do not want to be around us. The soap was removed and sugar was poured into the center of the water. The pepper moved towards the sugar. When we are kind and respectful, people are drawn to us and want to be our friends.

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STAR Students

This week’s STAR students were: Kylie, Maddie, Maliha, Ryan, Tricia, Wendy and Zander. Great job!

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Ms. Haynes also recognized her whole class for how awesome they were from welcoming our new student Xander.

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Important Upcoming Events

Monday, October 10th: No school

Wednesday, Oct 26th: Book Character Dress Up Day. NOTE – We do not celebrate Halloween. We celebrate by representing our favorite books! 

Wednesday, Dec 7th:  6-7pm  Primary Learning Celebration

*Thursday, Dec 8th: 6-7pm Intermediate Learning Celebration. Note that this is a change we have made to our school calendar. 

Perseus Class Share

Ms. Perham’s class share this week was inspired by Kid President’s 20 Things You Should Say More.  Ms. Perham’s class created 16 Things we should do more.  Students shared that they believed people should read more books, eat good food, and make more friends to make the world a better place.

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Book Buddy Projects

Last week Ms. Haynes and Ms. Gilbert’s class read, “What To Do With A Box” and brainstormed additional things we could make or do with a box. Each book buddy pair picked an object to make out of boxes and this week they worked together to make the item this week. Examples: robots, rocket ships, tree houses, cake, a library, etc. 

It was the perfect beginning of year project to get the creativity flowing at our project-based school.

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PEF News

Pizza Fridays are back!  Please use the order forms.  If for some reason you are not able to use the form, it is very important that you include your child’s NAME, CLASS, and # of pizza slices with the money that you turn in.  Otherwise, your order may not be placed correctly and your child is likely to be disappointed.  If you missed turning in an Annual order, you can still order pizza for the reminder of the school year in November.  This option (for ordering pizza for the remainder of the year) will be available at the beginning of every month. All orders are due by WEDNESDAY- at the end of the school day. There will be No Exceptions. Pizza Fridays are back!  Please use the attached forms to order Pizza for your child. You may order for a single day, a month, or for the entire school year. You will need to return your order form no later than Wednesday, October 5th for pizza lunch on Friday, October 7th.  All orders are due by WEDNESDAY. There will be No Exceptions.

Monthly Order Form

Weekly Order Form

Annual Order Form

There is still space available in some of our enrichments.

Pokémon Club: (Starts 10/31) This course has enough participants to run and everyone who has already registered is guaranteed a spot if it runs.  As this program has not reached its maximum capacity, registration will not be closed at this time.

The Sustainable Artist: Making Art from Trash (Starts 11/21): This class needs more participants in order to run. It is in danger of not being able to run. Registration will not be closed at this time in order to allow more students to sign up.

Please contact The Enrichment Team at pefenrichment@gmail.com for questions or to enroll!

Below, you can find some important dates for your School Calendar:

  • PEF Meeting– November 10th 7pm at Polaris
  • Autumn Potluck– November 5th @ 3pm at Polaris. A wonderful shared meal Polaris Families
  • Polaris Auction!!! – March 11th

There is still space available in some of our enrichments.  Several are beginning next week so:

Engineering FUNdamentals (Delayed Start- New Start date of 10/4): This course needs quite a few more participants in order to run. It is in danger of not being run and registration will be left open to allow more students to sign up.

Pokémon Club: (Starts 10/31)This course has enough participants to run and everyone who has already registered is guaranteed a spot if it runs.  As this program has not reached its maximum capacity, registration will not be closed at this time.

The Sustainable Artist: Making Art from Trash (Starts 11/21): This class needs more participants in order to run. It is in danger of not being able to run. Registration will not be closed at this time in order to allow more students to sign up.

Please contact The Enrichment Team at pefenrichment@gmail.com for questions!

Below, you can find some important dates for your School Calendar:

  • PEF Meeting– October 3rd 7pm at Polaris
  • Movie Night – October 7th @ 6pm at Polaris.  Join us for a family-friendly movie and popcorn (Movie TBA)!
  • Autumn Potluck– November 5th @ 3pm at Polaris. A wonderful shared meal Polaris Families
  • Polaris Auction!!! – March 11th