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LCTA PTA eROAR, October 30, 2020

Our VIRTUAL BOOK FAIR is Live!  Now through November 9 Please join us at the Book Fair: Two ways to shop:  - Shop the Store  -  New Virtual Fair! All orders ship home and book-only orders over $25 ship free. Every purchase earns 25% in rewards for LCTA. PTA GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS For our October meeting, we were very fortunate to have Dr. Kynai Johnson, ACPS Director of School Social Work, as our guest speaker. She gave a vibrant presentation and spoke with us about working with our children through the stresses of virtual learning. She left us with great tips such as: - Supporting the development of new routines (we have not lost our routine; we are simply developing a new one); - Identifying designated workspaces and materials for our children's online school; - Celebrating victories along the way (she calls it the "Peacock Strut!"); - Planning for and addressing screen fatigue (board games and books!); - Engaging in artistic outlets and self-care: Physical (sleep, exercise, healthy food, walking); Emotional (forgiveness, compassion, kindness, stress management); Social (asking for help, establishing boundaries, support systems, positive social media, time together); and Spiritual (time alone, meditation, nature, journaling, sacred space); - Acknowledging that it is okay to not be okay; - And finally, remembering we are all in this together.  Our November General Membership meeting brings us A'lice Myers-Hall, President of the American Indian Society of Washington, D.C., as we celebrate November's Native American Heritage month. We are combining our 360 Committee "Coffee Conversation" (our monthly chat highlighting the Heritage Calendar) and our regular Membership Meeting in November. Please mark your calendar and join us:  Wednesday, November 11 7pm via Zoom Webinar Amharic Interpretation provided RETURNING TO SCHOOL In the PTAC (district-wide PTA) meeting last night, Dr. Hutchings expressed how he would deeply like to see our students back at school; eight months away is too long! He and his team are carefully looking at how our district can make this happen in a way that is safe for everyone and without negative repercussions. The decisions of ACPS impact our entire city and ACPS is proceeding cautiously and looking hard at how to mitigate our two main constraints: building capacity and staffing. He, like everyone, wants normalcy, but there is still not a vaccine. He does not want to see things shut down entirely again as they did in March due to spikes in COVID-19 cases. The plan is to get K-5 back in the buildings in January, and conversations are now in place to adjust the online education schedules for K-2. At our November PTA General Membership meeting (November 11), Dr. Zissios will share any further updates, answer questions, and address concerns. LCTA PTA FALL MEMBERSHIP DRIVE & CONTEST Please remember to join the PTA (there is no fee to join the PTA this year; it is donation only). Even if you joined the PTA last year, membership must be renewed annually. There will be prizes! Every family and staff member who joins the PTA will be automatically entered into a RAFFLE. There will be one drawing per grade level and one drawing for staff. You could win a gift card to Amazon, Target, Taco Bell Cantina, Five Guys, Papa Johns, and more! And... That's not all...! The grade with the highest percentage of participation will win an asynchronous afternoon! The grade with the second highest percentage will win an asynchronous period! THE RACE IS ON: Leading the charge is KINDERGARTEN with 30.4% In 2nd place is SECOND grade with 28.1% 3rd and 4th places are neck-and-neck with FOURTH grade at 20.8% & FIRST grade at 20.5% Lagging a bit behind (but we know not to be ultimately defeated) are FIFTH grade at 18.5% and THIRD grade at 16.2% The class with the highest percentage so far is Ms. HRIBAR'S class with 55.6% participation! Thank you to everyone who has joined the PTA. For everyone else - as you can see, we still have a ways to go to reach our 100% participation goal. Please help us! There is still time to join: Connect With the PTA PARENT TEACHER CONFERENCES November 11-13 ACPS Elementary Virtual Parent Teacher Conferences will be November 11-13. The three days set aside for Parent Teacher Conferences will be asynchronous learning days for students at all ACPS elementary schools.  Parents will sign up for virtual conferences across a broader time span, including mornings, and teachers will be able to connect personally with families as we close out the first quarter of Virtual Plus. The hope is that the additional flexibility will provide ample opportunity to address the academic, and social and emotional needs of our students.  Your child’s teacher will be reaching out to schedule conferences by the end of next week. Teachers will assign asynchronous work to equate to a half-day of learning on November 11, 12, and 13. TEACHER WORK DAY Tuesday, November 3 There is a Teacher Work Day (No School for Students) on November 3 and no asynchronous work will be posted. PROGRESS REPORTS ACPS Progress Reports generated through the central office will be sent to family mailboxes the week of November 16. SINGLE PARENT SUPPORT  Join Mai Trinh, MS Global Health and Certified Health Counselor, and parent in our LCTA community, for an evening of learning vital self-care tips to stay healthy for the holidays. This will also serve as the kick-off for the first ever LCTA Single Parenting Group where parents can share resources, provide emotional support and form single parent/solo guardian friendships.  Mai has been a solo parent for over 7 years and has learned tips and tricks in the solo parenting journey. Please feel free to reach out to her with any questions: No registration is required to participate. Please see Zoom link below and spread the word to other LCTA single parents so we can start our supportive community. We are all in this together! Lyles Crouch Single Parent Support: Healthy for the Holidays November 18, 8:00 PM Meeting ID: 859 8748 2426 Passcode: 302632 CLASSROOM LIAISONS We are in the process of establishing a Classroom Liaison for every teacher. Connecting with your classroom liaison is particularly important while school is virtual - please support your designated liaison in their efforts! We are identifying the classes that still do not have a liaison. The role of the Classroom Liaison typically is to help the teacher as needed with additional classroom supplies, plan holiday parties, lead teacher appreciation and birthdays, and relay any other necessary information. Due to online school, the role has shifted to focusing more on connecting and creating community in the classroom. Examples of ideas that your liaison may initiate include a Zoom playdate or game, a parent Zoom happy hour, ways for students to recognize class birthdays, or anything that helps everyone feel more connected as a class. Your Classroom Liaison will also reach out to you about American Education Week (teacher appreciation), and also may have shared with you this fun list of activities to do this weekend with your children:  Safe and Fun Activities for the Family this Weekend! "You've been spooked!" neighbor gift Minecraft "Halloweekend" Kid Club is a free, safe, kid-friendly monitored Minecraft server for kids ages 8-13 Fluffy purple slime Printable spooky scavenger hunt Creepy donuts Vampire bookmarks Spooky bingo Pin the spider on the web YEARBOOKS The Good News: We have a confirmed ship date of November 6! Due to a temporary unexpected shutdown of the printing plant, we did not receive the books in October as we originally hoped and expected (that is The Bad News).  We anticipate distribution the week of November 9: stay tuned for specifics.  AMERICAN EDUCATION WEEK November 16-20 American Education Week presents us with an opportunity to celebrate public education and honor individuals who are ensuring that every child receives a quality education. Given all the extra hours our teachers and administrators are putting in, we thought it serendipitous timing to observe this. Please note on your calendar and more details will be forthcoming through your classroom liaisons.  360 INCLUSION COMMITTEE Heritage Calendar: October is Disability Awareness Month & November is Native American Heritage Month! The 360 Inclusion Committee is focusing on actionable items and discussion topics that offer a perspective of the diverse voices of LCTA. Please note these engaging new initiatives: Let's Chat Together! "Coffee Conversations" On October 20, we were fortunate to hear a wonderful and personal presentation from April Bryant, our 360 Committee Co-Chair, during our discussion on Understanding and Including our Children's Classmates with Disabilities and their Families. One of the (many) powerful things she said was that every one of us should be the biggest fan of every child at our school!  We were also fortunate to hear presentations from Terry Werner, Executive Director Specialized Instruction, and Ms. Ricks, who leads Special Education at our school.  November's "Coffee Conversation" (celebrating Native American Heritage) will be in conjunction with our November General Membership meeting on November 11 and will feature A'lice Myers-Hall, President of the American Indian Society of Washington, D.C. Let's Read Together! "Heritage Month Book List" What better way is there to celebrate with children the diverse cultures and families that are a part of the LCTA school community than with books? Every month we post a reading list that accompanies the Heritage theme for the month. October's informative and inspiring book list, focusing on Disability Awareness, was created by one of our 360 Committee teacher members, Ms. Yonkers.  To join the 360 Committee, or if you have questions and comments about 360, please reach out to April Bryant and Alexis Doxey at 360 Inclusion Website Heritage & Inclusion Calendar

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