ABS Thursday Notes- March 30, 2017

Thursday Notes                           

Published for the Arts Based School Community                                      March 30, 2017




How We Do It and Why

By Mary Siebert


“Appalachian storytelling isn’t a theatrical performance with sets and costumes and lighting and accents, though a good storyteller can conjure all those things in the mind of the listener.” – Dave Tabler


The 4th grade “Like a Family” event is not a formal performance, but a shared experience focused on the art of story-telling, arts and crafts of Appalachia, and the history of the textile industry in the Piedmont region of North Carolina. It recalls the days before radio when we all participated: telling stories, dancing, singing, playing instruments, adapting household objects to produce percussion and melody, creating art from whatever we found around us.

Students explore the history of these regions of the state, learning about the vibrant cultural mix of native people, immigrants, slaves, and invaders who all contributed to create a powerful and unique culture in our state. We explore this culture through reading, research, maps, visiting artists, and the arts. We share it with our families in a culminating event that includes dancing to the live old-time music of the Reel Shady Band, student art and sewing exhibitions, music, and storytelling.

Preparation for the storytelling involves extra time with “Mr. Bob” Moyer and Heidi McIver, who help students focus on the lifeblood lines of acting: simply telling the story, and truly listening. Students learn traditional tales from Mr. Bob, but they also learn about child labor in the textile mills, and unionizing efforts that followed changes in lifestyle from farming to millwork. Through the famous period photos of Lewis Hine and written memoires of folks who were there, students imagine themselves into the mills and act out a scene using quotes from the letters of textile workers.

Meanwhile, they have been learning to weave and sew, beginning with small, personalized projects. Along with the stories, students will perform some traditional songs from the region, and invite parents and siblings to join in the delightful reels and square dances. The event takes place at the MLK building and on Wednesday, April 5, at 6:00 p.m. 4th graders and their families should arrive at 5:45, dressed in their “country” clothes (no bare feet please!) Ya’ll come!



On April 7, if nothing unexpected delays us, K-4 Friday Sing will take place in the newly renovated theater. Since this will be our first full seating in the space, we do not yet know our capacity for visiting parents. Please be prepared to listen from the hallways, should we find that we can’t pack in as many visitors as we have in the past! Another event will be scheduled soon, to gather our 5-8 students in the new theater.


ABS Yearbooks

Spring is here and so are our yearbooks! Pre-ordered yearbooks will be going home with students this Thursday in their packets. If you didn’t pre-order don’t panic, we will have a limited number for sale starting on Monday, April 3rd. These will be first come, first served. You can purchase these with Ms. Wise in the MLK building or Mrs. Brown at the 7th St building. The cost is $20.00.


ANNUAL GIVING – WEEK 4 (2 days to go!)





Ok folks, it’s crunch time…our dollars donated so far is record-breaking but our work isn’t done.  Our participation is the lowest it’s been in years.  Please don’t think it doesn’t matter if you don’t participate – IT MATTERS!  We cannot achieve 100% participation without each and every family in our school making a donation or a pledge.  Don’t wait another day – please, make that magic happen NOW.


Here’s how:

  1.  LOOK for the blue envelope and form in today’s Thursday folders (or print the attached form)
  2.  DONATE NOW – Stick in a check, cash, change from your car (you get the idea) and return with your child tomorrow.
  3.  DONATE LATER – Fill out the pledge form to pay later and return the form with your child – all pledges count toward participation now!
  4. ONLINE https://mkt.com/the-arts-based-school/annual-campaign.
  5.  SMILE –  you just did an awesome thing!


All funds go directly to operating expenses and programs that impact each and every child at ABS every single day.  Now, we just need each and every family – THANK YOU!!


ABS Garden Work Day & Earth Day Celebration

Saturday, April 22, 9 am to 12:00 pm

The ABS Garden celebrates Earth Day on Saturday, April 22. Bring the whole family to do some spring planting and garden maintenance in honor of Earth Day! In addition to the usual playground time for kids who come along, we will have children’s Earth Day activities including seed planting, bouquet making and tasting of garden goodies.


Bring your sun hats and garden gloves. RSVP appreciated but not required: kristen@rootsfirst.com


Garden Volunteers Needed

Do you want to take care of ABS volunteer hours on your own time? The ABS garden is organizing for next year! Since we’re losing our long-term garden guru, Matt Mayers, we’ve got to regroup and find new garden caretakers. We’re looking for volunteers to steward one small part of the ABS garden. This job can happen in one hour a week or four hours a month. No experience is necessary! Please be in touch with Kristen Haaf if you want to learn more! kristen@rootsfirst.com


Builder’s Club News

Spirit Week in the 7th St. Building

Spirit week, sponsored by ABS Builder’s Club, is coming up, April 3 – April 7! Please participate by donating different things on each day.

Super Hero Monday – Dress up as a superhero. Bring in canned foods.

Twin Tuesday– Dress up identically with two or more people. Bring in things that come in pairs, ex. socks, gloves, etc.

Wacky Tacky Wednesday – Dress up wacky. Bring in new or gently used toys or board games.

Time Travel Thursday– Dress up in any decade or as any book or movie character. Bring in new or gently used books.

Fanatic Friday– Represent your favorite sports team by dressing up or wearing their gear. Bring in toiletries (toothpaste, shampoo, etc.).

Your participation is greatly appreciated. There will be a collection bin in the hallway at 7th St Building.



Join Builders Club on April 6th in the Seventh street building. Builders Club is sponsoring a Lularoe event to sell clothing and other merchandise. A percentage of the proceeds made by the vendors will be donated to the Eliminate Project in Builders Club’s name.


Be the Match

Come walk for the Be the Match Foundation with Builders Club students on April 29 from 9am-1pm. Be the Match gives all the money raised to help fight leukemia and other bone marrow diseases. Whichever school donates the most money that amount will be matched and donated in that school’s name.


Parent Satisfaction Survey

Just a few days left to share your opinion on the Annual Parent Survey.   Please follow the link to the ABS Parent Survey online about our school.  Your responses are completely anonymous and help us determine what’s working well and what needs more work!  Please take a few minutes to complete and submit.  Thank you!


Around Town…

RiverRun Film Festival is offering a FREE outdoor screening at Bailey Park 4/1. Lots of other free family events that day, too!  See attached flyer for more info.