Happy 2016!

January ‘ 16 Newsletter

happy-new-year-2016

New Year customs date back to ancient times.

MAKE SOME NOISE

To frighten demons away ancient Thailand fired their guns.  China uses firecracker to ward off the forces of darkness. Today, the Swiss beat drums, and North Americans sound sirens and party horns to bid the old year farewell.

EAT LUCKY FOOD

Many New Year’s traditions surround food. In the southern US, black-eyed peas and cabbage bring good fortune and prosperity. In Swiss homes, whipped cream is dropped on the floor, this symbolizes richness in the New Year.

GIVE A GIFT

New Year’s Day was once a time to swap presents.  In Rome, gifts of gilded nuts or coins marked the beginning of the New Year.  In Scotland, items like coal, silverware or even shortbread are exchanged for good luck.

 

PUT YOUR BEST FOOT FORWARD

In Scotland, first-footing is an important custom of the celebration of Hogmanay, or New Year’s Eve Day. First-footing is a practice that the first foot to cross a threshold after midnight will predict the next year’s fortune.
This practice holds that the first foot to cross a threshold after midnight will predict the next year’s fortune.

EXITING YEAR AHEAD

happy-new-year-2016-imagesAs time passes we see changes all around us, and some of these changes were once only science fiction.

  • During this year we may see China begin the longest undersea tunnel in the world.  It will Stretch under the Yellow Sea from Dalian to Yantai, but many say this is too dangerous because it passes over two major earthquake fault lines.
  • Rio de Janeiro will host the Olympic Games and will become the first South American city to host the event.
  • If you are into long travel vacations you may want to watch the Russian space group, Energiya, who will partner with US firm Orbital Technologies to launch the world’s first space hotel.  This hotel will host spectacular views of Earth and include celebrity chef menus.  With the capability of housing up to seven people the hotel may function as a possible emergency refuge for astronauts from the International Space Station.
  • The Juno probe that was launched in 2011 will finally arrive on Jupiter in July.
  • British researcher have discovered a special compound produced by the algae living in coral protected the algae and the coral from the sun’s UV rays. Using this special compound researchers created biosynthetic sunscreen for human use. This compound has been converted into a tablet form and should provide sun protection for the whole body. Testing should be done by the end of the year and may provide protection for the fair skinned by the end of the year.
  • The 58th United States Presidential election will be held on Tuesday, November 8th.
  • March will provide us with a total solar eclipse and a penumbral lunar eclipse, while September will provide an annular solar eclipse and a penumbral lunar eclipse. Make sure you watch the sky for these eye catching events.

 

LEAP DAY

leap-year

Why do we have Leap Years? The answer is simple. If we didn’t add that one day we would create a misalignment with our calendar and the Earth’s revolutions around the Sun. The ancient Roman calendar added an extra month every few years to account for this shift but Julius Caesar implemented a new calendar. In 45 BCE the Julian calendar added an extra day every 4 years. According to the original Julian calendar, Leap Day was February 24, and February was the last month of the year. The Chinese celebrate leap year every third year where they add an extra month into the calendar.

Leap Year Day has many traditions and folklore associated with it. One of the oldest and most popular traditions is that women propose to their boyfriends, and the man cannot turn her down without compensating the woman.

 

THE OLD FARMER’S ALMANAC FROM ALMANAC.COM

Winter will be much warmer and drier than normal, with below-normal snowfall. The coldest periods will be in early and late December, late January, and early February, while the snowiest periods across the north will occur in late December, early and late January, and mid- and late February.

April and May will be warmer and drier than normal, with drought a major concern.

Summer will be slightly rainier than normal, with near-normal temperatures. The hottest periods will be in early and late June, early July, and late August.

September and October will be warmer than normal, with near-normal rainfall in the north. Hurricanes in early and mid-September may help to ease the drought.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Jan. 5th Roller skating for 3rd and 4th grade
Jan. 7th Barns and Noble K-1st
Jan. 8th Pajama day
Jan. 12 Roller skating for upper level
Jan. 15th – 19th no school

Hello November!

 

November ‘ 15 Newsletter
Thanksgiving-Wallpaper-Owl

FIELD TRIPS

Great adventures await our students!

The visit to the pumpkin patch and the zoo were big hits. We had a school full of junior firefighters after our visit to the fire station. They all looked ready for work in their fire-fighter hats.

The upper level students recently went roller skating and fun was had by all. A second trip will be made on November 10 with the lower level students. Let’s see who skates the best.

COMPETITIONS

Competitions are a great way show the great talent we have at our school. We believe every child has a vast wealth of talent and showing that talent is a great way to boost confidence.We will be participating in several math competitions and our first contest kicks off next week followed by Math Olympiads on November 18.

English and Art competitions start soon, too. Our first essay contest of the year begins December 1st and our teachers have all the details. Encourage your child to get involved!

The Republic of Texas Art Contest begins in December. We need all our art students to get involved.

QUOTE OF THE MONTH: “Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.”

Parent Paired Reading

Parent Paired ReadingPaired Reading is a technique that pairs a skilled reader, the parent, and the child who is learning, reading a book together.

Parents who have undertaken Paired Reading begin to notice their child’s reading improve which builds self-esteem.

Try discussing the book: What do you think will happen in the story? What do you think will happen next? How does the character feel? How does your child feel about what is happening? These are all examples of how you can engage your child in reading and help with comprehension at the same time.

 

FUN FACTS ABOUT THE FIRST THANKSGIVING

The Plymouth Pilgrims were the first to celebrate the Thanksgiving. The Wampatgfanoag Indians were the people who taught the Pilgrims how to cultivate the land.

The Pilgrim leader, Governor William Bradford, had organized the first Thanksgiving feast in 1621. He invited the neighboring Wampanoag Indians to the feast. The first Thanksgiving celebration lasted three days. The pilgrims didn’t use forks; they ate with spoons, knives, and their fingers.

Sarah Josepha Hale, an American magazine editor, persuaded Abraham Lincoln to declare Thanksgiving a national holiday. She is also the author of the popular nursery rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb”.

Abraham Lincoln issued a ‘Thanksgiving Proclamation’ on third October 1863 and officially set aside the last Thursday of November as the national day for Thanksgiving.

Since 1947, the National Turkey Federation has presented a live turkey and two dressed turkeys to the President. The President does not eat the live turkey. He “pardons” it and allows it to live out its days on a historical farm. The heaviest turkey ever raised was 86 pounds, about the size of a large dog. Turkey has more protein than chicken or beef. Male turkeys gobble. Hens do not. They make a clucking noise. Commercially raised turkeys cannot fly.