October 2012

Dear Nursery School Families,

Welcome to the 2012-2013 school year!  The halls of San Marino Community Church Nursery School are filled with smiles, laughter and excitement!

Our school year is already off to a great start.  On Friday, September 14th we held our 2nd Annual Watermelon Social.  This was an opportunity for children to show their family their classroom.  Enthusiastic children played on the playground and enjoyed juicy watermelon slices, while parents chatted.  It was the perfect way to cool down on a balmy evening.

The Fall Coffee was informative and fun!  Hospitality Chairs, Mary Buckley and Joelle Grossi, graciously hosted the event on September 18th.  The food was delicious and the centerpieces caught everyone’s eye!  Each table was decorated with glass bowls and cylinders filled with goldfish. The swimming centerpieces were donated to parents to enjoy as a pet.  We also had a raffle, where winners received Picnic Day vouchers and a Starbucks gift basket.

The Fall Coffee was also a great way for parents to get to know one another and volunteer for Room Parent, Snack, Cookie Day, or to host a Class Coffee. If you missed the Fall Coffee and would like to volunteer for any of the aforementioned opportunities, please contact the corresponding board member.

Our Parent Education program kicks off on October 10that 9:15am in Fellowship Hall!  Dr. Ginger Bercaw, a Clinical Psychologist, will lead a discussion entitled Beyond the Birds and the Bees: How to talk to your children about their bodies and healthy sexuality.  The Parent Education program at SMCC Nursery School will feature a speaker once a month.  Dates and topics for future speakers are listed in the Family Handbook.  Attendance is free, so we hope you can come and enjoy the seminars and learn more about one of our greatest joys, parenting!

Picnic Day is a great way for your child to stay and enjoy school until 3pm. This program is offered every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, beginning in October.  Sign-up sheets are posted in the hall and sign-ups for November and December Picnic Days will be available October 19th.  On Picnic Days, remember to send your child to school with a lunch.

I hope everyone enjoys the upcoming Class Coffees.  This is a great opportunity to hear more about the curriculum from your child’s teacher.  You will get better acquainted with the other parents and maybe plan a play date or two!  The Room Parents will also let you know what fun activities they will be planning for the school year.

Next up is our annual Book Fair, which will be held November 27th and 28th in Fellowship Hall.  Cynthia Chylinski and Hong Yoon Plurad are organizing a great book fair, with a wonderful selection of merchandise provided by the San Marino Toy and Book Shoppe.  Volunteers are still needed to assist so contact Cynthia or Hong Yoon if you’re interested.  A percentage of the sales will go back to our Nursery School.  Be sure to check it out, it’s the perfect opportunity to purchase holiday gifts!

If you have any questions please feel free to ask myself, Nancy Swanson or a Board Member.  I hope your school year is off to a great start and that you find your time at SMCC Nursery School enriching for your family.

Warm regards,
Colleen McGuinness, President

Your teachers and I have been preparing our portfolios for NAEYC re-accreditation.  As we begin the new school year, we have become aware of how very important it is for us to learn from your knowledge of your children’s interests, approaches to learning and their developmental needs to incorporate that information into our ongoing classroom planning.  We have always asked for your goals for the year and have always welcomed your concerns for your children so we can address those areas in the class setting.  Teachers’ lesson plans include the social/emotional aspects of development as well as the physical and cognitive areas.  In other words we are looking for empathy for others, ability to take turns, cooperative play, maintaining friendships, self-control and signs of independence. Parents know their children best.  Please feel free to talk with your teachers about issues that are important to you and your family.  Teachers are looking for ways to incorporate these many areas into their curriculum and welcome your input.

Nancy Swanson, Director

Please remember that Fall Tuition was due Oct 1st!  If you have already sent your check – thank you!.  If you have not, and you have any questions please contact the SMCC Nursery School Treasurer, Debbie Kurtz at 626-287-6341 or deborahkurtz@sbcglobal.net.

Debbie Kurtz, Treasurer

Thank you to everyone who has signed up to bring school snack!  We greatly appreciate everyone participating in this activity. It makes snack-time easier on parents to only bring it twice per year, and the children get great joy out of delivering “The Cart” to all the classrooms.

Please see the Nutrition tab above – there is lots of great information. Also included in the tab is the October Snack Sign Up Schedule. Each month we will include the month’s schedule so you can double-check your scheduled days. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Nicole Anido, Nutrition Chair

We just completed our first round of Picnic Day sign-ups!  Thank you to all who brought your payments with you – it makes keeping track of things much easier.

Mark your calendars!  Our next Picnic Day sign-up is scheduled for October 19th at 9am.  This particular sign-up day will be for the months of November and December. Remember – BRING your checkbooks!

For more information about Picnic Day, please click the “Picnic Day” tab at the top of the page.  This will answer most of your questions.  Should you have additional questions, please contact our Picnic Day Chair, Debbie Merryman.

Debbie Merryman, Picnic Day Chair

Thank you to the following room parents for volunteering this year!  Your time and dedication enhance the nursery school experience for all our children.

GROUP 1:  Mrs. Talbot’s Monday-Friday Class
Elsie Wong and Sean Ky

GROUP 2:  Mrs. Brown’s Monday-Friday Class
Jeannie Kim and Erin Shearin

GROUP 3:  Mrs. Fitzhugh’s Monday/Wednesday/Friday Class
Annabel Hom and Natalie Peterson

GROUP 4:  Mrs. Randall’s Monday/Wednesday/Friday Class
Mary Buckley and Amy Walker

GROUP 5:  Mrs. Conkling’s Monday/Wednesday/Friday Class
Sheryl Brown and Jessica Martignetti

GROUP 6:  Mrs. Perth’s Tuesday/Thursday Class
Dawn Fagot and Ivy Lee-Keltner

GROUP 7:  Mrs. Conkling’s Tuesday/Thursday Class
Anita Tao-Huang and Alice King

GROUP 8:  Mrs. Randall’s Tuesday/Thursday Class
Susan Chang and Malia Griffice

Pasadena Area California Association of Independent Schools

Kindergarten and Elementary School Options Night:

Polytechnic School
Thursday, October 25, 2012   (6:00 – 7:30 p.m.)
Adults only
See flyer on Parent Board

Integrated Learning Solutions (ILS) Parent Information Meetings:

Walden School
Tuesday, November 13, 2012, (6:30 – 8:00 p.m.)

Gooden School
Wednesday, December 5, 2012 (6:30 – 8:00 p.m.)
Adults only

**See flyer on Parent Board

Matrix of key dates for kindergarten admissions (CAIS Consortium Schools) available upon request in Director’s office.

Featuring seven education sessions with local experts and a variety of current parenting topics, this series is not to be missed! Each speaker will give a presentation followed by a generous question and answer portion.  Casual and interactive, this series is designed to be informative, helpful and supportive.

We will begin our series with a former SMCC mother, Dr. Ginger Bercaw on the topic of “Beyond the Birds and the Bees:  How to talk to your children about their bodies and healthy sexuality.

Wednesday, October 10th
Fellowship Hall
9:15am – 11:30am

RSVP:  Sign-up sheets will be posted in the courtyard.  Please put your name down if you are planning to attend.

Babysitting:  Sign-up sheets will be posted in the courtyard.  Cost is $10 per child.  Please contact Joy Flores if additional information:  joycedawnbon@aol.com

Dr. Ginger will discuss how to establish yourself as a trusted ally to your children.   With clearly outlined, age-appropriate ways to talk to your kids about their bodies and sexuality, your children will have the accurate information they deserve.  And with the practical steps on how to answer questions about the birds and bees, you’ll gain a strengthened confidence in this sensitive and often awkward territory. Bring your questions and get ready for a thoughtful, enlightening and even humorous morning!

And mark your calendars for our November session, “Kindergarten Readiness” with Valentine Elementary School Kindergarten Teacher, Mrs. Krista Diaz, on Thursday, November 8th.

With the ever-changing world of Kindergarten it can be difficult to know what to expect.  Krista will discuss this and other key topics including knowing if your child will be prepared and the current expectations for kindergarten students.  Krista will give you the tools to put your mind at ease with detailed information including current kindergarten standards, changing trends in education and how to encourage and model social skills.  With lots of great parenting freebies and hand-outs, you will leave knowing how to facilitate a successful Kindergarten year.

Judy Rivera, Parent Education Chair

Save the Date! The Book Fair is coming up next month on November 27 and 28. If you did not get a chance to sign up to volunteer there are still shifts available.  This is a great way to get a sneak peek at some of the amazing merchandise we’ll have at the fair! If you can wrap a book or swipe a credit card – we can use you! If you’re interested, please contact Cynthia Chylinski or Hong Yoon Plurad.

Cynthia Chylinski & Hong Yoon Plurad, Book Fair Co-Chairs

Thank you to Jeannie Kim and Erin Shearin for the adorable window display from Mrs. Brown’s Class. Be sure to stop on your way in to admire the children’s artwork!

Jessica Martignetti, Window Coordinator


School Spirit Days are the last Thursday & Friday of the month (October 25 & 26 this month). This is a great day to wear your SMCC Nursery School tee shirts. If you haven’t already ordered yours, please contact Natalie O’Connor.  She will help get your order placed as soon as possible.

We have extended the deadline for our t-shirts to Friday, October 5th.

The order forms have all gone with with your children, so please fill them out and return to Nancy Swanson’s office.  If you have any questions, please contact Natalie O’Connor at nhoconnor@gmail.com

Natalie O’Connor, Enrichment Chair

Halloween is a delightful holiday for many children.  Dressing in costume is a favorite past time of many 3-4 year olds. However, we ask that on Halloween, you keep your child in their regular clothing for school that day. While some costumes are fun for your child, they may be scary for others.  We will celebrate with Halloween cookies and special napkins.  Thank you J

Please click on the link below to see all the wonderful things happening at the Crowell Public Library.