Monday Memo October 12, 2015

Principal’s Corner

Congratulations to Ella Gambaro for winning the Trike at the Columbus Day Festivities!

A special thanks to all of our parents and students who volunteered during the Columbus Day Parade. It is vital to our parish, school and neighborhood to help where we can in order to continue to grow strong for future generations.

During the second quarter our virtue will be silence. With our many areas of technology and the many demands that are placed on us daily, it is important for us to teach our students the value of this virtue. Sometimes it is difficult; however, we can only hear the tiny whisper of God in silence. How much do we value this virtue? Where can we carve out a time for silence each day to listen to the Holy Spirit? When as a family can we commit to silence during this second quarter?

May your week be filled with peace.

Dates to Remember

Oct. 13             8 am Mass

Oct. 16             8 am Mass

Oct. 16             End of 1st Quarter

Oct. 19-22       Schoola Stitch Clothing Drive

Oct. 20             8 am Mass

Oct. 23             8 am Mass

Oct. 23             STUCO Pizza Day

Oct. 27             8 am Mass

Oct. 29             Noon Dismissal

Oct. 29             Parent Teacher Conferences 1 pm—9 pm

Oct. 30             No School

Oct. 30             Trunk or Treat 6:30-8:30 pm

Nov. 1               8 am Mass

Nov. 2-13         STUCO Food Drive

Nov. 5               8 am Mass

Nov. 5               PTO Board Meeting  7 pm in the Church Hall

Nov. 6               8 am Mass

Nov. 9               PTO Special Lunch

Parent Teacher Conference Sign Up

Outside the gym at the top of the stairs there is a table with sign up sheets for the parent/teacher conferences. Please sign up for a time to meet with your child’s teacher if he/she is in grades PK-5. If you are unable to make it into school to sign up because of your work schedule, Fast Direct your child’s teacher a couple of times you are available and she will check the list for you.
If you have a middle school child, middle school teachers will be in the gym as in the past. There is no sign up sheet for middle school. Middle School students are also expected to come to the conference with you.
Conferences will be on Oct. 29 between 1 and 9 PM.

Academics

Middle School 
Transition to middle school is a difficult one. Learning to move between classes and multiple teachers with different expectations presents a steep learning curve. We are working hard to help the students make those transitions. One way that parents can help is to always encourage students to speak to the teachers directly when they are confused or don’t understand a concept or an assignment. Taking a step back, and expecting your child to have those conversations is a challenging transition for parents as well. You can help us to help them by asking the questions that encourage this: When can you speak with the teacher about this? What did the teacher say when you asked him/her about this? Have you asked your teacher for clarification or further explanation?

PTO News

Schoola Stitch                                                                                                                                                 We will have a clothing drive from October 19-22nd.  Please send in your clean, gently used women and children’s clothes in a large trash bag.  Schoola Sticth will pick them up and sell them on their website.  We receive 40% of the sales and earned $1500 last year!

Trunk or Treat                                                                                                                                             PTO will be hosting Trunk or Treat on Friday, October 30th from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm on the school parking lot. Flyers were sent out on fast direct and are also available in the office.  Be sure to send your reservation in soon.

Just a reminder, all PTO forms can be found on Fast Direct under the Planner tab under PTO.

If you have any questions about either event or any PTO matter, please feel free to contact PTO through Fast Direct. Thanks!

Athletic Association

Registration for CYC basketball is now open for boys and girls in grades 3-8! Please take advantage of the lower fee of $30 per child and register now. This early fee will be offered through October 16th. After the 16th the fee goes up to $60 per child.  Due to District deadlines, we have to close registration on Friday, October 23rd. So please don’t delay and register today!!

Registration for CYC chess, for children in grades 3-8, is now open. The fee to participate in chess is $20 per child. You can register your child by logging into EZRosters via the following link: ezrosters.com/stl-stam/  Once you have registered your child/children, please click the link that takes you to the payment page.  Registration will remain open until Friday, October 30th.

Last week the Athletic Association sent a message via EZRosters to all email addresses in the system regarding unpaid sports registration fees. The message did not apply to all families, however was the first step in our efforts to collect unpaid fees, some of which are over one year old.                                                  If you have an unpaid balance, we ask that you please log into EZRosters and settle your account. If you are unable to pay the entire balance, we understand, but ask that you contact either Tom Cissi or Amy Rafferty and make alternate payment arrangements. You can split what you owe in half or in thirds, or whatever is necessary to help you bring your account current. Since EZRosters does not allow for partial payments online, this will have to be done via personal checks. And please know that each family’s situation will be kept confidential.

Thank you!

STAAA
ezrosters.com/stl-stam/index.php”

VBRD

Each family should have received a copy of a prayer and instructions on picking a virtue that your family will work on. This was attached to a piece of card stock for your use to write and decorate your family virtue and post somewhere in your home. We are eager to hear about your family’s experience doing this project. Please send us comments about it, pictures of your poster, and even a family selfie. You might see it here! If you did not receive this, check your child’s backpack or give us a call.
Your VBRD committee,
Emily Elmore
Kate Black
Lisa Horner

Virtue Selfies

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In the Classroom

Fifth Grade students cheered on their classmate, Angelo, during a chess match against Izet.

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Third Grade made hula hoop Venn Diagrams to compare and contrast the traditional story of The Three Little Pigs with the book The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka.

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This week the Eighth grade students visited their buddies in the First grade classroom to spend time reading together.

Buddies Photo 2 Buddies Photo 4 Buddies Photo 5 Buddies Photo 1 Buddies Photo 3 

How to Raise Confident Kids Without Being a Praise Pusher

by Amy McCready

I’m so proud!”  “What a good girl!” “You are SO talented!”

So, there are worse things to say to your child right?

Of course! But… there are better things to say to them as well, without trafficking in the kind of never-ending praise that sends our kids into a “need it, crave it, got to have it” almost addiction to getting patted on the back. For many families it’s the beginning of a very slippery slope into entitlement that they find hard to reverse.

“But Amy, that’s what parents DO.”

I get it!

You think you’re helping them be more poised and self-assured, but left unchecked, you may be setting your kid up to be a person who needs constant “that a boys” from everyone around them to feel good about his own ability or choices.

Younger praise junkies may seek approval from parents and teachers.  “Do you like my singing,             Daddy?”  “Was that a good shot?” But when they’re older – their limitless need for affirmation can send kids gravitating towards their peers or the boyfriend/girlfriend for approval, and becoming the kind of entitled, high-maintenance people that most of us don’t really want to be around.

So all good intentions aside, let’s start turning that praise junkie tide right now in your home with these three steps:

Help them learn to be their own best cheerleader

The trick is to turn the tables for them by switching their source for affirmation from external (you and the rest of the world) to internal (what they see in themselves) so that they can develop a healthy self worth rather than rely on others to fill that void. For example – when your child says, “Do you like my picture, Mommy?”  Respond with, “Well, more importantly honey, what do YOU like about your picture? How does it make you feel?”  By making this one small shift you can encourage dialogue, internal reflection, and teach kids to be self-reliant for their self-image.

Is it easy at first?  Maybe not.  You’ll have to learn to say things like “You must be so proud of YOURSELF,” rather than “I’m so proud of you!”  That’s not to say that you can’t tell your kids you’re proud of them, but you also want to instill in them internal pride and motivation to try new things, excel at their talents, and make their own decisions. That way they won’t grow up to be the kind of people who feel the need to fish for compliments or entitled to praise for every little thing they do.

It’s about the process not the “end product”

Do your best to shift your dialogues from the end results to the process for your kids. Instead of focusing only on the “A” he earned on the spelling test, talk about how he studied and prepared for it. Instead of showering praise for your child’s score in the game, talk about how all the practice and perseverance paid off.

When kids focus on the process – how they can get to the end products rather than the final outcome itself, they still enjoy the highs from the wins, but don’t worry quite so much about the lows and they’ll be less dependent on others for approval.

Let go of the labels

Labels, even the positive ones, don’t help kids in the long run. We’re usually aware of the negative labels and their effect on kids, but to avoid raising praise junkies, we have to steer clear of the positive labels as well. Labels like smart, pretty, and athletic are external labels that put unnecessary pressure on kids to always live up to them. If a child is defined as the “smart one,” how will she feel if she comes home with a “C” in Language Arts?  Is she suddenly not “smart” anymore?

And of course, we don’t want kids to feel entitled to success or an easy ride because they are smart or talented. Again, focus on the things kids CAN control: hard work, perseverance, a great attitude, asking for extra help and more – and success is sure to follow.

Begin making these three simple shifts today and watch how your kids respond.  Not only will they have your unconditional love and support but they’ll also begin to become their own best champion.  They’ll learn to take pride in their accomplishments – and what it takes to reach them. All win-win-wins for you and your kids!