Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Interesting Research on Kids and leadership

from the Girl Scouts

Storytelling & Social Justice

This comes from Michelle at the Cumberland Family Network.. I heard great things about this last year -- Valerie Tutson will be here February 8 for two great events. She will have a storytelling workshop at 2pm on February 7 and she will perform that night at 7pm. Both events will be at the Congregational Church in Cumberland, 282 Main St. Both events are free and open to the public. (The programs are secular, just held at the church.) For those of you who have not Valerie, I can not say enough good things about her. She has a tremendous energy. Her workshop is a great way to learn how develop your own gifts in storytelling. (We all have them-truly!) She leads you through the process so it's easy and fun. This is a great experience for anyone- any age. Children are welcome. (Probably best for school-aged and up.) And the performance- just a great family night out. I'm happy to answer questions folks have, or you can call the church- 829-3419.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

More about Popular Culture

Audra Zarin forwarded me this blog post about 1 mother's failed attempt at being less controlling about popular culture and media with her daughter. I really hope that the Obama administration takes on regulation so that we don't have to be "those parents" quite so much...

Monday, January 26, 2009

Movie Review Sites

Parents on the Cumberland Family Network recently shared movie review sites for parents. Some that got high marks included: Common Sense Media
Kids In Mind And MovieMom

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Jan 26th -- Free admittance to the Children's Museum

Here is the scoop: The Children's Museum of Maine and The Children's Theatre of Maine have merged to form one organization: the Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine. We need new pictures to represent our new identity! Please join us on Monday, January 26, from 11am-5pm for an informal photography session! Instead of admission, you will be required to sign a photo release form allowing the Museum & Theatre to use any pictures taken of your child(ren) in our promotional materials. Local photographer Claudia Dricot will be at the Museum all day snapping photos while kids play. You might even see your kids in our new brochure!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Extra Curriculars!

Jonathan is organizing new after school programs and the sign-up time is now! Casco Bay Dancers is offering an on-site dance class. Right now the main age group signed up is ages 7 - 11 but if more kids sign up there is the possibility for more sections (I think). Kate would love more preschool / pre-K / K kids to sign up :-) Lindy, from the Tree School, is interested in offering after school yoga. I'm not sure if it is intended just for kids or for kids and parents, but she is one of the most amazing people I know and I would love the chance to do some yoga with her. She is really great with kids and kinesthetic learning. Contact Jonathan for more information, or to sign up, or check out the signs outside of James' office.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Auction and Brunch Update

Hello all of you FSP families!  I am thrilled to be contributing to this wonderful blog, and hope that this will be another place for you to gather information about the auction and hear updates of our progress.  Thank you, Kim!!   After a slow start when we returned from the holiday break, the auction committee is gathering momentum.  We have a great start on our collection of donations, but certainly need contributions from every member of the school community to make the fundraiser a success.  Also, now is the time to start mentioning the auction to friends and family, and continue to give them updates-- most people (myself included) need to be reminded several times in order for an idea to stick.  We are in the process of designing and printing the save-the-date cards and poster, which are beautiful, thanks to the expertise of Kristin Sims-Kastelein.  Once those are printed and in our hands, there will be opportunities to sign up to deliver stacks of cards to businesses, and posters to tack to bulletin boards.  There will also be a sign-up sheet posted in the coming weeks for volunteers for auction set-up, and the auction itself.  Many more updates to come... Keep those donations coming!!!!!    

Thursday, January 15, 2009

FSP MLK Celebration

Ellie is organizing a celebration of MLK's ideas for Friday's assembly and we're all invited (1pm - 1:45). Grace has given me a sneak preview -- there might be some gospel singing and perhaps a reading of I Have A Dream. For more ideas about how to talk about both MLK and Obama check out the Teaching Tolerance site.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

MLK day events 2009

The Portland Press Herald has a list of a few events happening around Portland in honor of MLK Jr. Day, and UNE is offering some interesting looking speakers as well. Bowdoin offers an annual children's program in honor of Dr. King at the Bowdoin Library at 10:00 am. There is also a movement to engage people in MLK day as a Day of Service (President Elect Obama has called on people to serve, as well). Some service opportunities in the Portland area are posted here -- perhaps we could think about creating a service project as a school community in the future?

ASL Links

John Smith has kindly suggested that we check out Dr. Bill Vicar's fingerspelling sign language site. Have others found fun and useful sites? This link is also permanently on the right hand side under "school related links"

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Middle School offerings from the Telling Room

Announcing three new and exciting workshops from The Telling Room! Please find three printable pdf files attached to share with whomever might be interested. To register or for more information, please contact us at 774-6064 or email On the Street: Writing and Photography Grades 6 ?12 Thursdays, February 5th, 12th, 26th, March 5th, 12th, 19th 3:30 ? 5:00 p.m. Taught by The Telling Room Staff, guest authors, and photographers. What's the word on the street? How do we talk about the streets and neighborhoods that we walk through every day? Using The Telling Room's digital cameras and our notepads we will explore the streets in search of the stories, real and invented, that are on every corner. We'll learn about framing a picture and how images and words together can create a powerful narrative. This workshop is connected to our yearlong project, "On the Streets Where You Live." Participation in these workshops may produce work that we will publish or make available to the public, with permission of the student artists. Songwriting Grades 6 - 12 Wednesdays, Feb 4th, 11th, 25th, March 4th 3:00 ? 5:00 p.m. Join local singer-songwriter Emilia Dahlin and hip-hop artist Sontiago in this four-week song writing workshop and hear your own words turn into actual song lyrics. Ever wondered how words transfer from the brain, to the paper, to the radio airwaves? Haven't you always wondered how your favorite artists came up with such catchy lines? You'll take part in creating an original song and watching it come to life. Learn how melodies, verses, and choruses develop into a final product. This workshop is connected to our yearlong project, "On the Streets Where You Live." Participation in these workshops may produce work that we will publish or make available to the public, with permission of the student artists. Documentary Shorts: Filming the Old Port Tuesdays, 3:00-5 pm. February 3rd, 10th, 24th, and March 3rd, and 10th. Grades 7 - 12 Come along with local filmmakers Cecily Pingree and Brooke Brewer and turn video cameras on the wharves and streets off Commercial Street. Interview the shopkeepers and personalities of the Old Port as you choose how to frame scenes of this important Portland downtown neighborhood. This workshop is connected to our yearlong project, "On the Streets Where You Live." Participation in these workshops may produce work that we will publish or make available to the public, with permission of the student artists.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Contra Dancing

The FSPPA has booked Crooked Stovepipe Band to call and play for our Contra dance / Potluck on Fri Feb 27th. I have invited them to join us for the potluck. We discussed beginning the dance at 6:30 and ending at 8:30. Do folks have feedback about the time? If you've never Contra Danced before, it is bound to be a great time, full of laughs -- don't be shy!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Twiglight and Real Life Real Talk

The Twilight books recently came onto my radar and I've been thinking a lot about how to think about them (you can see my musings here). I'm really looking forward to our March 11th "Sex Ed for Parents" program, in part to ask the facilitator how she would begin a conversation with a 9 10, or 11 year old about the themes in the books. I'd love to hear how other parents are talking about the books with your kids, too! The Parents Association has invited the Real Life, Real Talk staff to come host a "Sex-Ed for Parents" program on March 11th at 6:00 pm. Sex Ed for Parents The foundations of sexual health are built early on in a child's life. As your kids prepare to enter puberty and adolescence, they need information, guidance, and skills that will help them negotiate the often confusing realms of media messages, peer relationships, and sexual development. In addition, the world is changing, and many parents feel unprepared to help their kids deal with the new challenges posed by internet and communications technology. Join Real Life. Real Talk.® Facilitators as we discuss effective parenting strategies to help your kids build the foundations of sexual health now and in the future.

Friends in the Newspaper

Check out the fabulous article about our school and share your feedback!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Free Rice

Looking for a web site to procrastinate a bit, or amuse a bored child? Lise suggested Free Rice to me, and it is addictive and does a bit of good in the world, too.