Dear Middle School Families,
Amid the heat and humidity of the past few weeks, a gentle cooling has crept into the air. An uncomfortable day gives way to a refreshing snap, and a touch of dew on the handrail lets me know fall is here. Football games, serious discussions about halloween costumes, and of course the indulgence of a pumpkin spice latte all confirm what nature has begun to reveal.
Autumn also brings clarity to the academic work which is now our focus. With stories of summer shared and school friends now a regularity rather than a treat during the weeks of summer, coursework, quizzes, and due dates for projects have reentered the discussion at many family dinner tables. Managing the curricular and co-curricular expectations of Parker, as well as the unique needs of each family keep all of us here at Parker thinking about the best way to support students.
Because each child has unique strengths and struggles, there is no “one size” fits all solution; however, I do note that the concept of “triage” seems to benefit most students. In Middle School, we ask students to hold an increasing share of the responsibility for managing academic life. Haiku pages, planners, and meetings with teachers are all tools that help students develop the skill of prioritizing workflow and making choices about how to approach a life full of both opportunity and expectation.
While thinking about this concept I came upon a March 31, 1998 opinion piece by Dan Dunn, one of the section editors of the MIT Newspaper The Tech. I have selected the excerpt below for your consideration:
What is it that we learn at MIT? There are a lot of people who think that when we walk out of here, we are armed with an education that is second to none. But what is it that separates this education from the others?
Professor of Mechanical Engineering Woodie C. Flowers SM '73, who taught a manufacturing class that I took, gave the best explanation that I have heard yet. He didn't intend it to be a definition of MIT's teaching, but I think it is a great one: "MIT teaches students to perform triage. There is no way that students can meet all of the demands on their time. They must perform triage to decide what is the most important."
As we move toward the one month mark in the 2014-2015 school year, I encourage all of our students to take a good look at their planner, include the totality of the demands upon their limited time and use the concept of triage to prioritize and plan for success.
Thank you for checking out all we do here “in the Middle.”
10/10 - Fall Break - with no school on Friday, the week of October 5 will follow the Short Week Schedule - Friday Holiday
10/13 - Fall Break - with no school on Monday, the week of October 12 will follow the Short Week Schedule - Monday Holiday
As part of educating around our core value of Global Awareness, the Foreign Language department has selected the theme: hunger, for this year’s world language week events. In addition to the Middle School Olympics in the Spring, our Foreign Language department will be supporting other educational opportunities during the school year. On October 7, Middle School students will experience a hunger banquet hosted by our grade level advisors. Hunger banquets have been an educational experience at Parker and other schools for many years. If you are interested in learning more, the Oxfamamerica website, found here, has a good deal of information. Founded in 1942 by Oxford University Academics, Quakers and social activists the group’s original name was the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief and works toward ending poverty and hunger around the world.
We do need some helping hands to make the event a success. If you are interested in helping, please follow the link below and complete the form.
Hunger Banquet Volunteer Form
Notes from Nurse Maggie...
Enterovirus D68: Enterovirus D68 is a respiratory virus that has had a recent surge in activity among children. This virus causes a mild to severe respiratory illness. Most children recover fully from enterovirus however children who have other health problems such as asthma or impaired immunity are at higher risk. Rady Children’s Hospital has the following recommendations concerning Enterovirus D68:
If your student is ill, with symptoms such as a runny or stuffy nose, sneezing and chest congestion, treat the symptoms. If your student has a fever and a productive cough please keep them home from school. If your student has difficulty breathing, wheezing, high fever for several days, or difficulty keeping down fluids consider seeing your primary care provider.
Remember Parker policy: Any student with a fever of 100 degrees F or above should stay home from school until they are fever free without fever reducing medications (such as Tylenol or Advil) for 24 hours.
Be aware that viruses are spread by coughing, sneezing and touching another person or surface with your hands and then touching your face. Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
Viruses can live on surfaces for hours.
Keep a distance of six feet from someone who is coughing or sneezing
Wash your hands often or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer
Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, dispose of used tissue and wash your hands
Whether you are well or ill, drink plenty of fluids and get enough rest.
Please contact me with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org or 619-717-0235.
Reuseable “Grab and Go” Lunch Containers…
In an increasing effort to promote sustainable practices here at Parker, our cafe has reduced the amount of waste it generates by adopting reuseable “grab and go” lunch containers. Here is a link to an article about the containers: Going Green
Please note that the County Ed. parking lot is not available for Parker to use as overflow parking on October 18th.
Parker will have parking available at the University of San Diego. Please enter at the intersection of Linda Vista Road and Marian Way and park in the West Parking Structure. Located north of Alcala Park West, the structure is entered off of lower Marian Way. The structure provides inside parking for 775 cars. Immediately outside the structure is surface parking for an additional 335 vehicles.
Parker will provide shuttle service to and from USD from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm (or later, if people are still on campus).
Parker Theater presents The 39 Steps...
The 39 Steps (dun dun duuunnn!) is a stage adaptation of the Alfred Hitchcock classic spy thriller of the same name. The twist? All 39+ characters are played by only five actors. With thrilling intrigue, raucous comedy, and trope-twisting good times, The 39 Steps is a hilarious romp through the thrilling, dangerous, and melodramatic world of the 1930s spy game.
Join the hero, Richard Hannay (and his really quite attractive pencil mustache) as he races to uncover the secret behind The 39 Steps, save the fair maiden, and defeat the villain. This is your last chance: are you sure you want to be… involved?
Shows are in the Amelita Galli-Curci Performing Arts Center (PAC):
September 28th at 2:00PM
September 29th at 3:30PM
September 30th at 7:00PM
Tickets are $5.00 for students and $10.00 for adults.