ABS Thursday Notes- October 12, 2017

Thursday Notes                           

Published for the Arts Based School Community                          October 12, 2017




How We Do It and Why

-Mary Siebert


“It is difficult to know oneself, but it isn’t easy to paint oneself either.”- Vincent van Gogh


The week of October 23rd, Fourth Graders present an art opening at the Ewing Theater at ABS, the result of an extended study with resident artist Diana Greene. [Note date adjustments, below!] Ms. Greene is a published writer and professional photographer and film maker. Whose personal commentaries were heard for years on WFDD’s “Voices and Viewpoints.” Her Literacy Through Photography residency, also known as “My Inside-Outside Self,” has become a favorite tradition for ABS 4th graders. Ms. Green began her 13thconsecutive year with our students last week. Here is her description of the program:


“Excellent writing and sharp photography are linked by the primacy of strong images.  By combining these two art forms, students draw profound connections about the power of detail, the essence of composition, and the need to plan before execution and revise for perfection.  Literacy Through Photography teaches students the centrality of their personal vision and shows them how to translate that vision onto the page. Each student will compose self-portraits, setting up shots with a partner, using a digital camera. The self-portrait is then shot and printed in black and white.  Students will then write a narrative to accompany their self-portraits.  Text and portraits will be mounted and displayed. An opening reception will be held, celebrating the work, the young artists, and the power of art in education.”


Students are also simultaneously creating vivid self-portraits in art class with Ms. Messick. These three dramatic self-portraits in photography, drawing, and writing (considered precious keepsakes by ABS parents,) are displayed side by side, and we celebrate with a reading and screen projection of the portraits by each child in the theater. Through this process, each child investigates and details the exquisite individuality of each young personality and each face, each unique point of view. When we honor both the child and the child’s self-expression through this formal reception, we make a powerful and memorable statement of support to each student: we honor your work, and we love and celebrate you. Performances will be at noon, as follows: DeJarnette on Tuesday, October 24th.  Meeks on Wednesday, October 25th and Robertson on Thursday, October 26th, all in the new Ewing Theater at ABS.


MAP results sent home

Third through Eighth grade students will receive MAP results in their Thursday Packets today.  Please take some time to review these results.   Overall results show that ABS students in each of those grades achieve higher scores than the national norms in all areas tested: math, science, reading, and language arts.   Congratulations to our students and their teachers for a job well done.   If you have any questions regarding MAP results, please contact your child’s teacher.


mClass Reading Results Sent Home

The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction has implemented and required a kindergarten through third grade reading assessment called mCLASS:Reading 3D to help teachers assess, track and support each student’s reading skills.  Each student will be assessed every trimester using the online assessment program.  mCLASS:Reading 3D will instantly analyze your child’s development in grade-appropriate foundational reading skills. Teachers will use this data to focus their instruction around your child’s specific needs, in areas that may include:

  • Hearing and using sounds in spoken words (Phonemic Awareness)
  • Knowing sounds of letters and sounding out written words (Alphabetic Principle)
  • Reading words in stories easily, quickly, and correctly (Accuracy and Fluency)
  • Understanding what they read (Reading Comprehension).


In this week’s Thursday Packet, you will receive a letter outlining your child’s specific assessment results and progress as a reader. The letter will also include learning activities you and your child can do together at home to reinforce skills learned at school.  Parent support and reading at home are a vital part of your child’s education. The teacher’s efforts, combined with your support, will help your child read with mastery and confidence.  If you have any questions about the assessment, the activities, or your child’s classroom work and progress, please talk to your child’s teacher.


Parent Council Meeting – Friday, October 13
Please join us for the October Parent Council on Friday, October 13 at 8:15 in the MLK Cafe.  All ABS parents, families, and caregivers are part of Parent Council and are welcome to attend!  Don’t forget that attendance at Parent Council meetings counts toward volunteer hours.  The agenda for this week’s meeting is attached to the Thursday Notes e-mail.


Box Tops Collection – Friday, October 13

Volunteers will be in stationed at both buildings to collect Box Tops this Friday morning.  This is a simple way to support the school financially, so don’t forget to the Box Tops you have collected in with your child!  If you have questions, please contact Box Tops Coordinator, Gwen Ashburn (gwendolyn.ashburn@gmail.com

Book Fair Update 

The Book Fair was a huge success!

We want to thank all the volunteers who helped throughout the week.  We also want to thank all the shoppers who supported the fair by buying books- you made the book fair a success!

It was a joy to see so many happy kids buying books!  The teachers were also thrilled to receive so many books from their classroom wish lists.

In total, we sold more than $15,000 at the fairs and earned more than $8,000 towards new books for both the school libraries and classroom libraries.

Rachel Wilson & Catie Ayers- MLK Co-Chairs

Mackenzie Calhoun- 7th Street Chair

Positive Discipline Workshop for Parents

 October 21

-Ever wonder why your child listens so well in school but you have trouble getting him to even brush his teeth at home?

-Frustrated that you raise your voice more than you’d like to?

-Finding your previous discipline strategies no longer work with your new middle-schooler?


If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this workshop is for you!  Join us for an interactive workshop with Principal Robin Hollis as she takes us through the strategies behind the Positive Discipline practices used by ABS staff members.  The same effective principles found in the classroom can be beneficial in your home as well!  Find out how you can apply positive discipline at home today and provide wonderful continuity for your child each day.  The workshop will be tailored to meet the age appropriate needs of those that register.

WHEN:  Saturday, October 21  from 9am-Noon

WHERE:  ABS Café, MLK Building

CHILDCARE:  Childcare will be provided on site (please let us know how many children will need care when you sign up)

COST:  $10/family

SIGN-UP:  Email Robin Hollis (rhollis@artsbasedschool.com) to sign up today.  You may send in payment with your child in a marked envelope (checks should be made out to ABS).  You may also stop by either front office to sign up as well.  Space is limited so reserve your spot today!


Upcoming ABS Garden Workdays

Friday Garden Work Session and Play Date TOMORROWOctober 13 and October 27 from 1:30-3:30. We’ll get started before the kids get out of school and then let the kids play while we work some more.


Saturday Workdays, 9:30-12:30October 21 and November 4. RSVP appreciated but not required to kristen@rootsfirst.com.


Come Skate October 26!

The K-Kids and Builders Clubs are sponsoring a skating party on Thursday, October 26 from 6:30 – 8:00 at Skate Haven, 120 Hood Drive. The cost is $5.00 per skater (which includes skate rental). All proceeds will go to a challenge match for disaster relief through One America Appeal.

So grab your friends (and your Grandma) and come rock and roll!


Prospective Parents’ Tours

School tours for prospective parents are scheduled weekly on Thursdays at 9:30am.  Each tour is limited to 10 adults in an effort to limit the disruption to our students and teachers in the classrooms.  Parents interested in learning more about ABS and how to enroll their child, should contact the front office to sign up for a tour. 748-4116 ext 1023.  Applications will be accepted beginning January 1.  The lottery will be held the second Tuesday of February.


Salem Academy Visit

A representative from the Admissions Office at Salem Academy will be on campus on October 18th. All girls in 7th or 8th grade are invited to attend a meeting during lunch where they will learn more about the school and have a chance to ask questions. This meeting is optional and a great way to learn about Salem Academy!


Halloween is Coming

Please do not send students to school in costumes.  We all enjoy the fun and excitement of Halloween but find that costumes and accessories make it very difficult to concentrate.  Also we do not want students to bring candy in their lunch bags for snacks.  Although it can be delicious, high sugar snacks should not replace a healthy snack.  Thanks for your help!


Around Town…

Reynolds High School presents “The Miser” this Thursday and Friday evenings at 7pm and on Saturday at 2pm.  Tickets are $7 and all shows are presented in the Reynolds Auditorium.  Come cheer on ABS alumni Mackenzie Wright, Sophie Garau and Duncan MacMillian in this entertaining comedy!