Wise Word, 10/13/2021

School logo, golden owl link to the MVWSD logo link to picture of Vargas School

from the principal's desk

Hello Golden Owls,
September 15-October 15 is Latinx Heritage Month. Students have been learning about the contributions and histories of Latinx people in their classrooms. As we celebrate and learn this month, it's important to remember the importance of developing a positive cultural identity.
The Importance of Positive Cultural Identity
It is important for youth to feel that they belong. Positive identity brings self-assurance, a sense of belonging, a positive view of personal future, and better success in school. Developing a positive cultural identity—a critical element of personal identity—can be difficult for young people, especially when they may be bridging more than one culture.
The way that youth are treated in regard to their ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or gender directly affects their ability to develop a positive personal identity. As adults, it’s critical that we model recognition, understanding, and celebrating all cultural identities, including the cultures to which we and/or our children do not belong.
Sharing and celebrating different cultural identities increases self-esteem and promotes cultural competence among all young people. The diversity of Silicon Valley is a benefit to our youth as they are exposed to many different cultures.
The following discussion topics* can help families talk about their cultural identity:
  • What is our cultural background?
  • What are some things that you value about our culture?
  • What are some things about our culture that you would like other people to know?
  • Do you know anyone who’s from a different culture? In what ways are your cultures similar and different? Do your cultural differences make it difficult to be friends? How can you share your cultural differences in a positive, nonjudgmental way?
*Adapted from the Canadian Child Care Federation’s “Supporting Our Children’s Social Well-Being… It’s a Team Effort!” workshop
This article was provided courtesy of Project Cornerstone’s Asset-a-Month program. For more information, visit www.projectcornerstone.org.

In Partnership,
Principal Vern Taylor

School News:
  • Golden Ticket Winners
  • After school Virtual Halloween Parade 10/29 @ 3:00pm
  • Coach’s Corner
  • Is your child feeling sick?
  • Gift Card Donation
  • Principal’s Virtual Office Hours
District News:
  • Mentor Tutor Connection Volunteer Information Session - Thursday, October 14th
  • SMART Goals - Creating and Troubleshooting IEP Goals that Work - Flyer here
  • Cafecito con el Superintendente
  • MVLA Speaker Series with Dr. Michael Bradley - Flyer
  • Parent University: Supporting Literacy Grades 3-8
  • Eviction Help Center at MV Public Library - Flyer
  • Health and Wellness: Parenting Series
  • Better Together: Seeking Multiple Perspectives - Flyer
  • MVEF Relies on Parents Like You!
PTA News:
  • Scholastic Book Fair - October 4th - 17th
  • Membership Drive
  • Get Involved
  • Konstella
  • Website

Golden Ticket Winners - Week of 10/12/2021
Tyson W.         RM: 1        Annie M.        RM: 9
Mira D.           RM: 2         Malika K.      RM: 11
Keeratjot N.    RM: 3        Aaron V.         RM: 13
Kiley A.          RM: 5        Rieger V.         RM: 14
Noah A.          RM: 5        Ali U.              RM: 15
Mayuka M.     RM: 6       Jamie W.          RM: 16
Noelle R.        RM: 8       Leslie Y.           RM: 17
The Vargas Way - Be Safe, Be Respectful, Be Responsible, Be an Upstander.
What are Golden Tickets?
Students earn Golden Tickets from teachers and staff when they are following the Vargas Way. What is
The Vargas Way? Click here for an in depth view.

After school Virtual Halloween Parade 10/29 @ 3:00pm
We are having a virtual Halloween parade! For those wanting to participate, submit pictures of your children in their costumes to [email protected] by October 25rd. Please include your child’s grade level when submitting your picture. The virtual Halloween parade will take place after school at 3:00 on October 29, 2021. If you would like to join us for the virtual celebration, Please click here. Can’t wait to see OWL of you!
Please note: Our school does not have any school-wide event that asks students to wear costumes during the day of 10/29; however, if students want to wear costumes for Halloween, they can. We are asking, as is standard, not to wear masks or overly gruesome or violent attire. We are also asking that students not bring any accessories that would distract from regular classroom instruction.

Coach’s Corner
There are some incredible benefits of reading each night for 20 minutes! In a study by Nagy and Herman, it was found that reading just 20 minutes had both academic and social-emotional benefits. Students developed empathy and other soft skills, helping them maintain healthy relationships with their peers. Reading for 20 minutes each day also builds vocabulary, and this exposure increases the chances of students being in the 90th percentile on standardized tests (Nagy and Herman). Whether you want to stimulate creativity in your child or promote relaxation before bed, 20 minutes of reading is an excellent choice at home!
(Repeat) Is your child feeling sick?
Please keep your child home if they are not feeling well. Signs to look for are headaches, runny noses, sore throats, fever etc… If your child has any of those symptoms, we will need a negative COVID test before returning to school. We want to ensure the safety of all children and staff. Thank you for your cooperation in keeping your child home to get the rest they need to recover. For more information about our district and county guidelines for quarantine and COVID testing, click here.

(Repeat) Gift Card Donation
As you may know, there are several families in our district that need help to meet some basic needs. The district is providing meals every day. But some families need more support for providing food, clothes and shoes for their kids. There is a critical need for gift cards for these families. If you are able, please consider donating a Safeway or Target gift card to families in our own district. Thank you so much for your help! Let’s show these families how strong and supportive our Vargas community really is!
Please bring the gift cards to the office. If you have any questions, please contact Ms. Bea, School and Community Engagement Facilitator – SCEF- at [email protected].

(Repeat) Principal’s Virtual Office Hours
Join me today for our informal Principal Office Hours (virtual) from 4pm -5pm. Feel free to drop in if you have any questions or if you just want to chat. For office hours, there is no formal agenda, it is a time for you to stop in to say hello, and for us to get to know each other better! I look forward to meeting you!
Register in advance for this meeting.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

  • October
13th - Principal Office Hours - Virtual, 4:00pm - 5:00pm - Register Here
20th - Principal Office Hours - Virtual, 4:00pm - 5:00pm - Register Here
21st - MVWSD Board of Trustees Meeting, 6:00pm - 10:00pm
22nd - Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm - 4:30pm
27th - Principal Office Hours - Virtual, 4:00pm - 5:00pm - Register Here
27th - ELAC Meeting, 6:00pm - 7:00pm
29th - Principal’s Coffee, 8:30am - 9:30am
29th - Virtual Halloween Parade - 3:00pm - 3:30pm
  • November
1st - Lifetouch Picture Retakes
3rd - Principal Office Hours - Virtual, 4:00pm - 5:00pm - Register Here
4th - MVWSD Board of Trustees Meeting, 6:00pm - 10:00pm
5th - End of Trimester - Minimum Day - Dismissal 11:55am
5th - Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm - 4:30pm
10th - Principal Office Hours - Virtual, 4:00pm - 5:00pm - Register Here
10th - SSC Virtual Meeting, 5:00pm - 6:30pm
11th - Veteran’s Day Holiday - No School

Mentor Tutor Connection Volunteer Information Session - Thursday, October 14th
You can change the life of a student! Come learn about volunteer opportunities to Mentor high school students and Tutor students in grades K-8 in our Mountain View and Los Altos schools. Becoming a Mentor or Tutor will add joy to your life and help a student in our local community to a brighter future!
There is no obligation to sign up as a volunteer. You're welcome to just come and learn more about what we do.
All volunteers must be high school graduates.
Date: Thursday, October 14th
Time: 5:30 - 6:30 pm
Location: Online via Zoom (URL provided upon registration)

SMART Goals - Creating and Troubleshooting IEP Goals that Work -
Flyer here
IEP Goals are written in a very specific language and it can be difficult to see how the goals relate to concrete skills and goals for your child. Learn more about SMART Goals and how they work with Professor Anne Spillane of University of Massachusetts Global.
What: Parent Education Event and Discussion
When: Tuesday, October 19, 7-8:30 PM
Where: On Zoom, email [email protected] for link

Cafecito con el Superintendente
Wednesday, October 20, 2021⋅5:30 – 6:30pm
This is an informal meeting for Spanish-speaking parents. Translation will be provided. Please register in advance for this meeting by clicking here: http://mvw.sd/cafe10-20-21

MVLA Speaker Series with Dr. Michael Bradley -
The MVLA Speaker Series continues on Thursday, Oct. 21 at 7:00pm. Join us for an evening with clinical psychologist and author of Yes,Your Teen Is Crazy! Loving Your Kid Without Losing Your Mind, Dr. Michael J. Bradley. Dr. Bradley’s respect-based philosophy is at the heart of the presentations he has given to thousands of parents who are seeking ways to communicate with their adolescent children. He takes you inside your teenager’s head and shows you why teens think and behave the way they do, and gives parents real-world advice, strategies, and methods to use. Register at: https://eventbrite.com/e/michael-bradley-yes-your-teen-is-crazy-registration-167808157717

Parent University: Supporting Literacy Grades 3-8
Date: October 27, 2021 Time: 5:30-7:00pm
Registration Link: mvw.sd/pu102721
“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body” - Joseph Addison.
Join Instructional Coaches Melanie Stanley, and Katie Stern share creative tips and strategies to better support your child in their literacy skills. By supporting your child’s literacy you can take part in developing their reading ability, comprehension, and language skills. To submit questions prior to the event, go to mvw.sd/questions. We will do our best to address your question during the session.
Note: While this presentation is tailored towards families with children in third grade and above, all are welcome. If you’d like to see a presentation that is aimed more toward families with younger students, check out the recording of last year’s literacy-focused Parent University event.

Eviction Help Center at MV Public Library -
The City of Mountain View hosts a help center at the MV Public Library with city staff, CSA, and Project Sentinel to provide residents with rent assistance, eviction help, legal resources, and other support services. There are multiple representatives that speak Spanish. The help center is available every Thursday from 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. at the Mountain View Public Library on the 2nd Floor, Room 205. For more information, contact [email protected] or visit mountainview.gov/COVID19HousingRelief.

Health and Wellness: Parenting Series
It is natural for us to pay attention to behaviors that are irritating, worrisome, or make us want to disappear from embarrassment. Usually, when our child is calm, quiet, and self-entertained, we breathe a sigh of relief. However, this inadvertently teaches our child that they can get our attention by being disruptive. The good news is that we can reverse this pattern by paying attention to our child’s positive behaviors.
To praise positive behaviors:
Try praising something positive that your child is doing each morning and evening (for example, “Good job sharing with your sibling”). We are used to noticing disruptive behaviors, so praising your child’s positive behaviors will take some practice and patience – but will ultimately benefit both you and your child.

This tip came directly from the free, online Everyday Parenting program created by parenting expert, Dr. Kazdin.

To learn more parenting tips click here.

Better Together: Seeking Multiple Perspectives -
The focus of October’s Better Together infographic is “Seeking Multiple Perspectives.” When individuals examine issues from a different point of view, they are able to think more critically and question dominant beliefs. Please see the graphics attached to this newsletter, or visit https://www.mvwsd.org/bettertogetherMVWSD.

MVEF Relies on Parents Like You!
Please donate to MVEF to help us reach our annual $800,000 fundraising goal and raise an additional $300,000 to fund two ELA teachers to reduce class sizes at the middle schools in 2022-23. Please see the website at mvef.org for more information and to donate online. You can use your credit card to pay in monthly installments.

Scholastic Book Fair - October 4th - 17th
Only one week left to shop at our Scholastic Book Fair! All book-only orders over $25 ship to your home for FREE! Now is a great time to shop for upcoming birthdays and more. Feel free to share the link with family and friends so they can shop for loved ones as well. Every purchase benefits our school and helps develop a love of reading.
Shop from the link until Sunday, October 17th:

Membership Drive
Our PTA membership drive is coming in October! We need your help to reach our 80% participation goal. To support your classroom teachers, please go tojointotem.com and choose Jose Antonio Vargas as your homeschool. Memberships cost $11 and additional donations are very appreciated! Donations will help pay for community engagement events, assemblies, author visits, educational subscriptions, teacher reimbursements for classroom materials, field trips, Ms. Bea’s scholarship program, and teacher appreciation. Your participation and support are needed to build our Vargas community!

Get Involved
A great way to get involved this year is to become a room parent.https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1VmB94ytD0ck24ygVjFXIjAKcElWOoP1HlW0Nm6P0_2A/edit

Konstella is our main communication tool. The PTA will post information about meetings, events and volunteer opportunities. You will also be able to communicate with other families from your child's classroom.
Use this link to register:https://www.konstella.com/cd/XGJHYL
To Join a Classroom
Web: Click your name at the top left corner. Click “Your Children” to add/modify your children.
Mobile App: Click the Settings icon at the top left corner. Click “Your Children”.
Find links to membership, Konstella, gear shop and volunteer opportunities on our website.
Shannon Lundin, and the Executive Board

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