Saint Andrew's Episcopal School
Chapel Message for March 3, 2016

Several people enjoyed Father Cameron's message this morning so much that they suggested we share it on our blog:
What I want to focus on today can be reduced to one very simple word, but unlike many of my messages in chapel, it’s not love. It’s faith! Grace is God’s gift to us…not that He doesn’t want us to try to live lives of love and service, but we don’t earn our way into God’s favor. That can be confusing to us at a deep level if we hear messages that we always have to prove that we are good enough. We are already good enough for God. The Lord made each of us that way. 


Posted on: 3/3/2016 3:47:00 PMComments (0)

Books for Winter Break

Just in time for the Winter Break, school librarian Mrs. Sylvie Roy, has assembled a great list of books to keep the kids entertained at home, in the car, or on a plane.  Stop by the library before pick up today to check one out or visit your neighborhood library over the break.
Wish by Emma Dodd

Pre-K- Kindergarten
World of Reading Star Wars The Force Awakens: Rey Meets BB-8: Level 1 by Walt Disney Company

Pre-K- 1st grade
Here Comes Valentine Cat by Deborah Underwood

Hot Rod Hamster series by Cynthia Lord.
Ms. Lord will visit Saint Andrew's on April 8th for a special author reading and book signing. Check out some of her award winning books


Posted on: 2/12/2016 3:15:00 PMComments (0)

Choosing our words wisely

by Erik Carlson, Head of School
In the last two summers the faculty read Mindset, by Carol Dweck and The Power of Our Words, by Paula Denton. We have been focusing on the language that we use with our students. The meaningful feedback and guidance provided by the adults in the community shapes the students' mindset and stimulates their growth intellectually and socially. We are cultivating their inclination to be curious and kind and hard-working. I was reminded of one of the key messages from Mindset recently, when I read the following blog from one of our education journals.
The Best Type of Praise by Jill Berkowicz and Ann Myers
As educators, expectations and achievement remain front and center. This arena is not limited to teachers and students. It extends to leaders with teachers and to leaders and teachers with parents. It exists in formal evaluations and informal communications. Expectations and student achievement are a bottom line focus in schools and are paramount in the thinking of adults in them.


Posted on: 1/27/2016 4:22:00 PMComments (0)

Next Generation Science Standards

by Dr. Len Bloch
The media has devoted a lot of attention to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and how they might change science education in public schools. Saint Andrew’s families are naturally curious about how the NGSS might impact science teaching here. Educational standards provide an important baseline for educational practice: They represent the minimum of what students should learn, and they should not limit what they learn.


Posted on: 1/12/2016 11:45:00 AMComments (0)

A Super Science-filled Holiday Break!

Are you looking for another source of fun for the winter holidays? Trying to ease that academic slump when the holidays are over? Why not try some science! Science is the best way to keep children engaged and thinking over the break because it provides them with a joy of discovery, the excitement of exploration, and builds the life long skill of curiosity! It can provide a chance for students to make mistakes without feeling the pressure of a bad grade or the distress of failing in front of a group. Science can also bring about a realization that everything is connected in some way by a scientific explanation waiting to be found!


Posted on: 12/16/2015 4:57:00 PMComments (0)

Teaching Our Children to be Kind

“A little consideration, a little thought for others, makes all the difference.” Eeyore (Winnie the Pooh)

We all want our children to be kind. In fact we find ourselves stunned and embarrassed when we witness them being anything but kind. But childhood is a series of growth lessons and learning to be kind is one such milestone.

We all assume our children know what being kind means, however it is important to define it for them and discuss it just as you would any other value that’s important to you. So what is the definition of kindness?


Posted on: 12/4/2015 4:34:00 PMComments (0)

Raising a Spiritual Child

Lisa Miller’s book The Spiritual Child is a groundbreaking study on the health and development of children. Her book concludes that developing the spirituality of your child is the greatest gift you can give for managing adolescence and beyond. Spirituality affects brain development, healthy relationships, one’s connection to the transcendent, and our identity and purpose.


Posted on: 11/9/2015 4:28:00 PMComments (0)

Get to Know Head of Middle School Tom Burgess

Yesterday afternoon, it was announced that Tom Burgess had been selected as our Middle School Head.  Tom has made an immediate positive impression on all within his sphere of influence.  Parents describe him as thoughtful, responsive, and knowledgeable on Middle School matters.  Teachers note his inclination to listen and appreciate the programs and traditions at Saint Andrew’s, while also sharing research and his vast experience to advance the program.  On the administrative team, Tom is quick to frame issues according to the School’s mission and strategic plan.  Tom is a trusted colleague and a champion for Middle School students.  He continually seeks opportunities for the students to share their “voices”, to participate in decisions that affect their school life, and to assume leadership opportunities.


Posted on: 10/28/2015 12:55:00 AMComments (0)

Our Giving Community

Parents, students and teachers in the Saint Andrew’s community give of their time, talent and treasure to make our community a better place. Saint Andrew’s is a place each of us can be at our best because we are embraced by a generous community. The many gifts that you offer lead to multiple successes for each and every child, each and every day.


Posted on: 11/4/2015 11:25:00 AMComments (3)

How to minimize stress during homework time

by Paula Ramos, Learning Specialist
The after school homework routine can be a challenging time for many families. Following are several tips to help ease this potentially trying time for you and your children.  

Time for homework!
First and foremost, it is important to develop a homework routine that begins at roughly the same time every day.  The time of day you choose to begin homework is not as important as sticking with the routine you develop. What time is best? That will depend on your child. Every one is different. Many children need some down time before getting started on homework. They enjoy a snack and perhaps a ½ hour of physical activity or playtime with a favorite hobby. Others have trouble shifting from a down time activity to the structure of homework and therefore need to just get started on homework right away. Again, whatever your child’s personal style, the homework start time should be as routine as possible.


Posted on: 10/14/2015 12:02:00 PMComments (0)

Learning a Second Language: How Parents Can Help

Saint Andrew's offers Spanish instruction as an enrichment course in Lower School and as a core daily subject in Middle School. Our Spanish teachers, Ana-Zahra Ezzine de Blas, Saul Guizar, and Bibi Millet, help students learn about the Spanish language and culture, practicing the four basic skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students feel excited about Spanish and are enthusiastic learners, while being acquainted to new values, ideas, customs, and traditions. We pay special attention to the spoken language. The language of instruction is almost entirely Spanish.
BUT, you don't have to understand Spanish to help your child boost his/her language skills.


Posted on: 9/30/2015 4:52:00 PMComments (0)

Why do we celebrate Eucharist in a multi-faith school?

by Father Cameron Ayers
Firmly rooted in the Episcopal tradition, Saint Andrew’s is an inclusive community grounded in respect and honor for each of our members. The religious pluralism of our school community provides a magnificent opportunity to foster the spiritual formation of our students from a variety of faith traditions. Students are encouraged to seek clarity about their own beliefs and to honor those traditions more fully and faithfully in their own lives.


Posted on: 9/22/2015 12:11:00 PMComments (0)

What is Morning Meeting?

by Victoria Trevor
Morning Meetings are a powerful way to begin the day.
The best way!
The way we begin each day in our classroom sets the tone for learning and speaks volumes about what and whom we value, about our expectations for the way we will treat each other, and about the way we believe learning occurs. The Morning Meeting is part of Responsive Classroom and is an integral way to do this.


Posted on: 9/8/2015 7:08:00 PMComments (0)

Bringing Out the Best

By Erik Carlson
Over the summer, we published our school magazine, The Oak, which elaborated on living our mission to educate the “whole student.” I wrote an article about how satisfying it is to be an adult in a community dedicated to educating the whole student. As we attend to the balance of the intellectual, spiritual, physical, and social growth of each child, we are stretched and challenged and grow with our children. We count on each other, our fellow parents, for support and guidance, and that camaraderie is lasting. In the opening chapel I encouraged the students to seek out role models. You, with the teachers and administration, are those models, demonstrating the behaviors and attitudes you wish your children to adopt. Educating the whole student brings out the best in us.


Posted on: 9/2/2015 7:08:00 PMComments (0)

The Student Experience Survey

By Joey Jalalian and Joelle Strickland

Here at Saint Andrew’s Episcopal School, we recognize that each child’s school day is a unique experience full of exploration, curiosity, relationship building, and the development of identities and lifelong values.  As professionals in education, we want to ensure that we are delivering the richest experience possible for each and every student.  In order to ensure this, the Lower School faculty wanted to understand in a deeper, more meaningful way, how our students perceive their school world on social, emotional, and academic levels.  While there is no one way to measure the complex symbiosis of teaching and learning within a special community like ours, we chose to start by administering The Student Experience Survey to our second through fifth grade students. It was our hope that this survey would be a valuable start in capturing a comprehensive picture of student life.


Posted on: 5/4/2015 7:25:00 PMComments (0)

Winter in New York City

As you think ahead to Spring Break, take a minute to check out the great trip Ms. Halla and Mr. Souder had over Winter Break as they took a group of nine 7th and 8th graders to NYC on an arts/literary New York extravaganza.

Prior to the trip, students attended a series of NYC post WWII art history classes where they studied why and how the center of the art world shifted from Paris to New York.

The week long trip included gallery walks in Chelsea, MOMA PS1 in Queens, SOHO art lofts, Greenwich Village art tours and so much more. The group somehow found time to see Les Mis and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night on Broadway, witness the NY Rangers lose to the Vancouver Canucks in a shootout at Madison Square Garden, go sledding in Central Park, and eat the most amazing pizza in the west village.
Check out some of their pictures!


Posted on: 3/25/2015 4:30:00 PMComments (0)

The Episcopal Tradition

by Erik Carlson, Head of School
A favorite part of my job as Head of School is the opportunity to meet with many of the families considering our school for their child’s education. It’s a great time to get to know the families and discuss why I believe Saint Andrew’ Episcopal School is an amazing place of learning for both the students and the parents. I often recount for them how last spring, after my appointment to be the eighth head of Saint Andrew's Episcopal School, I had an unscheduled opportunity to visit the campus. Moments after I stepped onto the plaza, an 8th grade boy broke from his casual conversation with his friends, approached me, and asked if I was Mr. Carlson. He looked me in the eye, extended his hand, and said, “I am going to be graduating, so I won’t get to know you at school next year, but I am glad you are joining us. So welcome.”


Posted on: 2/6/2015 5:26:00 PMComments (0)

My first three months at Saint Andrew's

Deacon Lauren McCombs recently shared about her experience as a new member of the Saint Andrew's Episcopal School faculty.
I can’t believe that three months have already passed since I first joined the staff at Saint Andrew’s Episcopal School as the Religion teacher for Pre-K and Kindergarten. I am truly enjoying my time here immensely. I have gotten to know my 39 students quite well as I tell them stories about God who is all loving and all forgiving.


Posted on: 12/29/2014 1:43:00 PMComments (0)

Our new fifth grader

Late last semester, Mrs. Trevor took part in a one day shadow experience to understand what it's like to be a fifth grade student at Saint Andrew's Episcopal School. Complete with SAES uniform, "Vicky" began her experience by completing the homework that would be due the following day. Here's her adventure...

Monday Evening:
Tonight, my trepidation, excitement and nervousness have started to build as I prepare for my 5th grade student experience. What will it be like? Will I be able to do the work? How will the students respond to me? What will I do at recess? Who will I sit with at lunch? Lots of questions!

First, I prepared my uniform. Proudly, I squeezed myself into a blackwatch pleated skirt and SAES sweatshirt. I have developed a new appreciation and understanding of our uniform. It is much easier not to have to choose something different every day to wear however I do have some ideas for the scratchy skirt material and new recognition of how cold the skirts can be!


Posted on: 12/2/2014 8:07:00 PMComments (0)

Choir and Ensemble Receive Gold in Anaheim

The Concert Choir and the Jazz Ensemble made an outstanding showing at the 2014 Heritage Festival in Anaheim, California. Both groups received 1st place Gold rankings in the Jr. High School divisions earning scores in the 95th percentile of all High School and Jr. High School Choirs, and scored in the 90th percentile of all High School and Jr. High School Jazz Bands in the nation.


Posted on: 5/28/2014 3:20:00 PMComments (0)

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