Weekly Newsletter #11: Grateful for our Community (Redwoods Class)

Weekly Newsletter #11: Grateful for our Community (Redwoods Class)

Redwoods Togetherness
“Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.”

― Rumi
Support TKG on #GivingTuesday


Tending the Garden – Field Trip on Monday
Parent Teacher Tools – Book Club – TKG PT Resource
TKG Office – Philosophy committee meets next week
In Education News – Read Odin’s story
TKG TV– Watch Branches of Gov by the Redwoods
Listen to TKG’s Playlist on Spotify!

Social Share: TKG’s Pinterest Board

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Happy Fall

Community at TKG
Field Day Mission: Cross-class Collaborative Play

Happy Fall, everyone!

Even with the weather beginning to (finally) cool down, the Redwoods have been igniting some exciting things in our classroom.

We were so proud to perform our Three Branches of Government play. Thank you for joining us. All classes were able to be our audience and we learned much from the feedback we received. We were able to reflect on the content, our projection as well as our managing our energy. TKG is a place where students are empowered to take the lead on projects like this and we’ll take this experience and reflect and learn of the next one.

As a learning facilitator, It has been an amazing opportunity to observe the Redwoods in their element and stretch themselves. We saw students become set designers, script writers, directors, and historians! I appreciated seeing their excitement for learning wrapped up in hard work and commitment. In true TKG fashion, they were able to observe an unknown subject, inquiry, and relate their own experiences to it – causing them to make the learning and knowledge their own!

Our audience peers were very supportive, especially the Acorns! We even had a few parents come to a second showing because they couldn’t get enough. Our Redwoods are already planning their next play…help us develop the stories at home by asking your students to talk about their performing experiences and hopes.

Hope you had an amazing Fall break, folks!


Jill Vengerik, Lead Teacher
Nicolette Rodriguez, Co-Teacher
Lena Garcia, Head of Education – Teacher Mentor
Trish Valdez, School Business Manager
Shannon Minor, Board President
Facebook (private group), Community Forum
Shutterfly Site: photo archive
OFFICIAL CALENDAR: subscribe and never miss an event


  • Celebration of Learning (Passion Project Expos/FACEtime demos), Sat 9 Dec 9am. You won’t want to miss this first quarter expo on all the fabulous learning we have been doing!
  • TKG/SBKC Playgroup. Starts Monday! Every Monday and Wednesday beginning November 27 through February 7, after school. Click here for more details and to register.
  • Book Club, Friday 3.15-4.15pm. We are covering chapters 5 & 6 of “Best Friends, Worst Enemies: Understanding the Social Lives of Children.” You are always welcome to join!
Adopt a PATH Family – this Season
Passion Project: Parents


PT Schedule: Nov 27 – Dec 1
MON – Rossfeld, Bottura, Assad, Sclafani, LaCharite, Tuccinardi, Correia, Wardwell
TUE – Barsha, King, Metzger
WED – Dokmanovich
THR – Williams, Metzger
FRI – Bottura

  • Make Up Hours. We are looking for 3 PTs to cover: full day and am (shifts can be split)
  • Facilities Team (Handy people) Meeting. Sat 2 Dec. Contact Alice with any questions. We still need someone to drive a large easle to Venice.
Winter Birds: A Tipsheet
Redwood Togetherness


  • School Fundraiser. Wed 6 Dec, all day. Join us at Riviera Nails to get some self-care and support TKG. Invites your friends too!
  • A Night of Science & Literacy. Dec 8. A local fundraiser featuring Andy Weir, the best-selling author of The Martian. Click here for more information (not a TKG event).
  • End of Year Tax Donations. Please consider TKG as you are planning for tax write offs. One-time or monthly donations make a difference for you and us! Visit our Giving page (on our website).
SIGN UP: After-School Care


In Education News: We have a responsibility to teach social responsibility

Teaching Thanksgiving in a Socially Responsible Way

*   *   *
A Teaching Tolerance Resource

School Thanksgiving activities often mean dressing children in “Indian” headdresses and paper feathers as they sing “My Country ’Tis of Thee” or “Mr. Turkey.” Some teachers might even ask their students to draw themselves as Native Americans from the past, complete with feather-adorned headbands and buckskin clothing. These activities might seem friendly and fun, unless you are aware of how damaging this imagery is to perceptions of contemporary Native peoples. This imagery contributes to the indoctrination of American youth into a false narrative that relegates indigenous peoples to the past and turns real human beings into costumes for a few days a year. It’s not just bad pedagogy; it’s socially irresponsible.

Native Americans have been speaking out and writing back against the colonialist narrative of Thanksgiving for as long as the American narrative has existed. More recently, comedian Jim Ruel (Ojibwe) includes Thanksgiving in his act (starting at 1:40 in this clip), Dr. Debbie Reese (Nambe Pueblo) writes about children’s books that “set the record straight,” and Native American students speak out about what Thanksgiving means to them.

LEARN MORE @TeachingTolerance

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