E-NEWS YOU CAN USE
HABIT OF MIND: Listening with Understanding & Empathy
"It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen." Oliver Wendell Holmes
From the Principal
Dear McKenzie Families,
I hope that you enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends. This week's mild weather makes it hard to believe it's December. Even our students have been fooled into thinking it's October! We need your help in making sure that your child comes dressed for all types of weather. We find that layering clothing is always a great idea. Because our students spend 30 minutes of lunchtime recess outdoors, it's time to break out the long pants (no more shorts, please!), warm jackets, hats and gloves. This allows everyone to have an enjoyable and safe time on the playground.
With a new month comes a new Habit of Mind. December features the habit of listening. Some psychologists believe that the ability to listen to another person--to empathize with and understand that person's point of view--is one of the highest forms of intelligent behavior. We spend 55% of our lives listening, but it is one of the skills least taught in schools. Here at McKenzie,however, that isn't the case. Through our Second Step curriculum we intentionally teach the 'Skills for Learning', one of which is EARS LISTENING. Ask your child to show you the gesture for "ears listening"---if he/she can't remember, cup the palms of your hands behind your ears as a prompt, and I am certain your child will say, "Oh, yeah!". This month we are focusing not only on the act of being attentive, but truly being present. We know that we often say we are listening when we are actually rehearsing in our heads what we want to say next. We want our students to learn to devote their mental energies to another person by investing in their partner's ideas. One way we teach this is by having our students "turn and talk" where they assume the position of sitting knee-to-knee, giving eye contact. Active listening is a complex skill that we will continue to teach throughout the year. I hope you will join us by modeling and reinforcing the importance of this habit at home. I will share additional strategies with you in next week's Monitor. Till then, listen on!
As our school's Share the Joy/Share the Feast comes to an end, the Sharing Committee would like to thank McKenzie families for your phenomenal participation! Through your generous donations, holiday gifts for 144 children, more than 100 coats, 120 hats and mittens, 3 boxes of library books, and over $2,000 in Jewel cards will be delivered to our sister school, Carmen-Buckner. That breaks every record of generosity I can think of! Thank you for sharing your resources and gifts to Share the Joy with others. What a wonderful way to demonstrate the true meaning of the holidays.
May your weekend be merry and bright!
From the P.T.A.
Jr. Great Books Registration Ends 12/5 - In Junior Great Books, students read multicultural folktales and short stories from around the world. Small groups lead by parent volunteers meet once a week for 8 weeks during lunch/recess. For more information, please visit the PTA website (www.mckenziepta.com). Registration runs through Dec. 5. Space is limited. Contact Margo Chambers at email@example.com or Jennifer Nash at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Cars 2 is Coming to McKenzie! Movie Night for McKenzie students is Friday, December 9th from 6:30 - 8:15 p.m. All McKenzie students are welcome to have a night out at the movies, and parents don’t need to stay! Admission is $4 at the door (cash only please). Please drop off your McKenzie student (no older or younger siblings please) at the auditorium doors no earlier than 6:20 p.m. and pick up at the auditorium doors at 8:15 p.m. (Please come inside the building for drop-off and pick-up.)
McKenzie is Going Places! The biennial benefit “Going Places” takes place on Sat., Feb. 4, 2012. We’re seeking donations big and small from the McKenzie community! Please visit http://signupgenius.com/go/donations104 to see what we need and sign up for what you can give! Check out some of the places already confirmed for the auction here: http://mckenziepta.com/2011/benefit-feb-4-2012/. Questions? Contact Rebecca Lieber and Emily Zivin at email@example.com.
Variety Show Kick-Off Meeting - The fun is soon to begin for our 32nd annual show! Our first cast/crew meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 8th in the McKenzie auditorium. We’ll talk about this year’s theme and discuss the rehearsal schedule. Come on out to see old friends and make new ones. Regular rehearsals will begin in January. Any questions, contact Jon Marshall, Show Producer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Game On! The first Open Gym Night of the year is Wednesday December 14th from 6-8 p.m. Bring your family for an evening of indoor play using the gyms and equipment. Lockers are not accessible during Open Gym night. Please help protect our gym floors by bringing a change of shoes if the weather outside is wet. Go to the PTA website for more information and a full schedule of Open Gym dates.
Chess Club Registration is Open! Whether your child is new to the game of chess or has experience, all skill levels are accommodated. Because chess is mathematical and strategic, students master important skills applicable in many areas: concentration, patience and problem-solving. Registration is open until January 8, 2012, and the first class is on January 9. See the PTA website for details.
Honor a Faculty or Staff Member with a Certificate of Appreciation from the District 39 Education Foundation. Make a tax-deductible donation to the Foundation (minimum online donation $39) and we will create and delivered a beautiful keepsake certificate for the honoree. Each honoree will also be added to our online Wall of Honor -- a virtual brick wall that lists every honoree and the family that has made the donation. All donations to the Foundation help fund innovative programs and experiences for the D39 community. For more information, or to order a certificate, go to www.d39foundation.org.
Don't Forget to Order the 2011-2012 Yearbook! New this year. . . you can only order online at Jostens (http://www.jostens.com/apps/shop/customer.asp?CID=204749). Each yearbook costs id="mce_marker"3, and no orders will be taken after January 23, 2012. If you have any questions, please contact Sheri Herd at email@example.com.
On the Web
|Reminder: Submissions for the McKenzie Monitor are due by Wednesday at 3:00 pm. Go to mckenziepta.com/communication.html for the submission form. Questions? Contact Mindy Rittner, McKenzie Monitor Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.|
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