We have had quite a busy week here at OAES!
Our second day of Enrichment Clusters was on Wednesday, and groups met in the morning because of early release for Parent-Teacher conferences. Ms Sugiuchi hosted the Book Fair in the Media Center, and Thursday night it was open late for Family Night. On Tuesday night, some OAES families went out for pizza at Stevie B’s to help earn money for our school.
I volunteered to help with Enrichment Clusters and was placed in the Origami group with Ms. Holte, a 1st-grade teacher. Some other Cluster groups met to exercise, conduct science experiments, learn how to sew, step dance, crochet, and cook; and those are just a few among a whole long list of other fun and interesting topics. You can see one very unique and creative cluster group by clicking here. These activities are made possible by material and monetary donations from parents, as well as PTO funds and community support. They are important break-out opportunities for kids to learn skills other than rote reading and math. Developing the whole child is something we care a lot about here at OAES.
Parent-Teacher conferences began Wednesday, ran late on Thursday and ended on Friday. Generous and thoughtful parents brought snacks and treats to the teachers on Thursday evening as a show of gratitude for their extra-long day of work.
The meeting between a child’s parents and his teachers are valuable indeed, as face time is increasingly hard to come by in our busy, screen-focused society. Many parents work hard, long hours and rely on the few appointed minutes with their child’s teacher each semester to bring them up to date on progress in learning, social, and emotional development. Teachers spend so many hours per week with your child, it is hard to believe they wouldn’t be able to develop a deep understanding of each child’s strengths and weaknesses. Of course, parents can make time to meet with teachers on their own accord, but the more open availability during Conference Week adds convenience and accessibility to an otherwise time-constrained system.
One thing that makes conference week really fun is being able to shop at the Book Fair and we have our wonderful Media Specialist, Deirdre Sugiuchi, to thank for that. You can read her blog here, and don’t hesitate to visit her in the library, she can always use extra hands. I went in for a couple of hours on Friday morning to help kids look for books on their reading level and figure out what they could afford to buy with the money they brought. I have to say, when I am volunteering, the time goes by very fast - two hours can feel like 20 minutes!
Does taking a night off from cooking dinner and raising money for our school at the same time sound like a good idea to you? Stevie B’s donates 10% of sales from anyone who shows up for dinner on the third Tuesday of every month and tells the cashier they are with OAES. Really, a virtually effortless and totally delicious donation can be made when you go out for pizza on our behalf!
Our most exciting thing happening this week is Octoberfest - the annual Fall festival and our biggest fundraiser of the year, this Friday from 6pm-8pm! There will be hay rides, inflatables, face painting, and food. You can purchase tickets from PTO every morning before school (7:15am-7:40am), they are 5 for $1. There are also wristbands available for $20 each that allow unlimited activities. Raffle tickets are $1 each, prizes are a girl’s bike, boy’s bike and a football signed by UGA Coach Mark Richt. There are quite a few volunteer spots to be filled at the festival, so please take a moment to sign up with Volunteer Spot. See you there!