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Elementary Newsletter

November 29, 2012

Monday, December 10, 7 p.m.                                                           School Board Meeting in library

Wednesday, December 19                                                                 K-12 Holiday Concert

The kindergarten picked up litter on the campus on Wednesday to raise money to shop at Jacob's Dream Christmas Connection on Thursday. They received a special invitation to shop early before the event opens to the public on Friday. The students will make their own gift bags for the gift items they bought on Thursday afternoon. In math they've been working on patterns and will apply that when they decorate those gift bags. The class has also been reading some special stories and learning about sequencing.

The 3rd and 4th graders presented their final projects about Native Americans of Oregon this week. Each student became an expert on a topic of his/her choice, created a project, and prepared a presentation. The class experienced everything from samples of cooked salmon to models of teepees and huts! Coming next will be a physical science unit about force and motion.

In 5th and 6th grade PE the students are enjoying a new challenge. From the push-up position, they must stack cups with alternating hands in a pattern, sometimes with a partner! Wow!

Mrs. Becktold’s desk is well decorated with “doodle art” made by students while they listen to read aloud stories.

Important notice for Richland families:  Beginning on Monday, December 3, the bus stop will return to the old RES parking lot. Thanks to all for your patience and cooperation.

Scholastic book flyers are going home today. This is the last chance to order books before Christmas. Books make great gifts! Orders (with cash or check payable to Scholastic) are due back to Mrs. Becktold on Monday, December 3. If an order is a Christmas surprise, be sure to include a note to Mrs. Becktold so that she doesn’t accidentally deliver the book to the wrong person and spill the beans! Extra flyers are also available for all age groups. Contact Mrs. Becktold if you want flyers in addition to the ones your children bring home.

Jacob’s Dream is having their 7th annual Christmas Connection sale this Friday and Saturday, November 30 and December 1, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Lions Hall. “Junior Jacob’s” will be a special room for young shoppers with kid-priced gifts for giving. Encourage your children to take advantage of this special Christmas shopping opportunity!

Sports news:  The boys’ 6-7-8 basketball team hosts Imbler on Friday, November 30, at 2:30 p.m. Note the change in start time for that game. The Saturday game in Elgin has been canceled.

Using Empathy Teaches Empathy

Dear parents,

Do you ever wonder what it's going to be like when you are old and gray…and you're dependent upon your children for daily care? Does this serve as a sobering reminder of the importance of raising responsible and empathetic kids?

One of the best strategies for raising empathetic kids involves being empathetic with our kids. Yep! Every time we use empathy, we teach it. In our audio, Keeping Cool When Parenting Heats Up, we describe how consequences gain their power from the empathy locked in before they're delivered.

Here's the problem: Empathy doesn't always come easy! That's why wise people delay their reactions or consequences by saying:  "I'm too angry to think about this right now. I make better decisions when I'm calm. We'll talk later."

Is that great modeling? Would you like for your kids to learn to do this?

The next time you find a need to punish your child, experiment with prefacing the consequence with a sincere empathetic statement. For example, "Ooooh, no. That arguing on the way to the game was no fun. You might want to warn your coach that I won't be driving you to the games until I don't have to worry about that anymore."

Another strategy for modeling empathy involves reading stories to our children about others using it. In his new book, Stand in My Shoes: Kids Learning About Empathy, Dr. Bob Sornson provides a heartwarming story about a girl named Emily who discovers the power of empathy. In this book, Emily learns that focusing on the feelings of others brings the best out of others.

When our children experience empathy from us, and they learn about empathy from Emily's wonderful story, the path is laid for a lifetime of happier relationships. Watch for this book.

Thanks for reading! Our goal is to help as many families as possible.

Jim Fay

Love and Logic Institute