Friday, November 30, 2007

Community Holiday Giving

"Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones surround us every day."

Once again King School will help children in our community by purchasing small holiday gifts. Look for snowflakes in the courtyard windows with coded numbers. Take a snowflake to Mrs. Greene or Mrs. Basta and they will inform you of the age, sex and "wish" list item for the child in need. Please wrap your gift and attach the snowflake to the top of the gift. All gifts should be delivered to school and placed in the teachers lounge by Wednesday, December 19. We have many snowflakes this year so more children at King can participate by helping other local children. Thanks in advance for your generosity. Questions? Please contact Susan Aaronson.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

AAPS Gift Policy

With the upcoming gift giving season upon us, please be aware of the following AAPS Board of Education policy: "Ann Arbor Public School employees may not accept gifts of more than token value from individual students or parents or from groups of students on school property."

Report Cards - Friday, November 30

Your child will bring home their report card on Friday, November 30. This report indicates the progress your child has made since the beginning of the school year. Please pay close attention to the end of the year targets to see how your child is progressing toward the targets. Also, please note if the teacher has indicated areas that need additional practice or focus.

If you have questions, please call us at school--or stop by.

MLK PTO eNotes Archive

In case you are looking for more news that might now get posted here, please check out the MLK PTO's eNotes Archive. You'll find lots of useful information :-)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Fifth Grade Bake Sales

The King School 5th graders sponsor popular Baked Food Sales throughout the year in their efforts to raise money for end-of-the-year field trips and specific classroom needs. This year we are promoting an even greater variety of snacks that include healthy choices. As your child looks over the appealing selections, he or she may not even notice the changes!

The focus on healthy snacks is consistent with nutritional guidelines adopted by the Ann Arbor Public Schools. Our school district supports Project Healthy School, a 3-year-old initiative that partners the Ann Arbor Public Schools, health practitioners, and local agencies to promote our children’s health. (For more information, visit Also, check out the MLK website for updates related to the Bake Sale, including postings of recipes for healthy snacks.

The first Baked Food Sale will be on December 5. Items are priced at 25¢ each. Look out for some great snack selections!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Help Make Healthy Chioces

As we get closer to Thanksgiving and winter break, I want to encourage families to help school make healthy choices as teachers plan any winter celebrations. Here is list of healthy snack choices to consider. Serving all healthy foods and incorporating physical activities make a powerful statement for our kids as they become more independent in making choices.
  • Fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Yogurt
  • Bagels with lowfat cream cheese
  • Baby carrot and other vegetables with lowfat dip
  • Fig cookies
  • Animal crackers
  • Baked Chips
  • Lowfat popcorn
  • Granola bars (but may contain allergens)
  • Soft pretzels and mustard
  • Pizza (no extra cheese)
  • Pudding
  • String cheese
  • Cereal bar
  • Single-serve lowfat flavored milk
  • 100% fruit juice
  • Flavored bottled water*
  • Deep-fried Twinkies with hot caramel and/or fudge, whipped cream and those little multi-colored sprinkles
* This line and above recommended by Michigan Action for Healthy Kids.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Parent Opportunity: Presentation on how to help your child with writing

Dear King Parents:

This year the School Improvement Team (SIT) will provide a series of presentations and workshops for parents on writing. The first is led by the Eastern Michigan Writing Project and is called “How to Help your Child with Writing.” This 90-minute presentation is for parents and caregivers who want to learn more about how to encourage their student writers at home. Dr. Cathy Fleischer and Kimberly Pavlock of EMU will explore family activities that promote writing as well as effective ways to respond to children about their writing. If you have not attended this event before, we strongly encourage you to attend. In the future, SIT will offer this year other presentations about the Ann Arbor writing curriculum, culminating with a writing workshop for the whole family.

For your convenience, the EMU presentations will be repeated three times. Please sign up for one of the following evenings:

• Monday, November 19 7 – 8:30 pm.
• Tuesday, November 27 7 – 8:30 pm
• Monday, December 3 7 – 8:30 pm

KingCare will offer childcare compliments of the MLK PTO.

Please return the form sent home previously by Friday, November 16 or call Secretary Mary Greene at 994-1940. Also, don't forget to indicate whether you will need childcare and the names and ages of your children (school aged children only).

Monday, November 12, 2007

Over $500 raised from Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF

On behalf of the PTO, thank you to everyone who participated in this year's work around Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF which raised over $500! Nice job MLK community!

King School International Night Meeting Monday 11/12 6:30-7:00

Join us for a planning meeting for International Night tonight from 6:30 - 7:00 in the MLK Media Center!

What is International Night?

International Night is a fabulous evening of pride and celebration for the King School community. We begin with an International Potluck of delectable dishes from around the world. Then we have a Showcase of Student Performances (225 students last year!)—such as Arabic Debkeh Dance, Korean Tae Kwon Do, Guatemalan Dance, Dutch song, Thai dulcimer, American Hip-Hop, Indian bhangra dance, Chinese fan dance, and more! We also decorate the hallways with informational Country Displays and art projects for a World Tour. We also try to help with International Crafts during lunchtime enrichment that week. We are also always open to new innovative ideas!

When is International Night?

International Night will be Thursday, January 31, 2008, 6:30-8:30 pm.

How can I be a part?

If everyone does a little bit, it won't be too much work. We have this one meeting in the fall, then everything else is done by email. We need parents to organize performances—either perform a special talent with your child and/or organize/teach a group of students—dance, song, poems, music, martial arts, be creative! We also need parents or students to make informational displays about different countries or cultures. The day of the event, we will need a lot of help with setting up the potluck, clean up, Security, Parking, and the Stage Management Team. We also need technical types for the Technical Team (video simulcast and recording, microphones, make DVDs, etc.). Those who are good at crafts can do international-themed crafts during lunchtime enrichment that week. There is something to fit every schedule and talent. Everyone is welcome!

What if I can't make it to this meeting?

Email Frances Kai-Hwa Wang at to volunteer (or phone 930-2162).

Thanks on behalf of all our children!--Frances Kai-Hwa Wang (Hao Hao and Niu Niu)

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Nominate MLK teachers and staff for the Celebration of Excellence!

I recently received the piece below from the Board of Education secretary and thought it would be a good time to remind MLK families that you can recommend MLK teachers and staff for the Celebration of Excellence Award. Thank you for your consideration.
Forwarded message:

We have made some exciting changes to the Celebration of Excellence awards! As you know, awards are given to staff who perform above and beyond what is expected in their jobs, and staff may only receive the award once. We will now award a "Gold Star" to recognize those staff whose nominations are received for a job well done, and will also include repeat nominations up to 1 per year. These "Gold Star" awardees will receive a gold star lapel pin and a $25 Borders gift card. Names of our Gold Star recipients will also be read by the PTOC chair at a Board Meeting.
Information about this change in our selection process will be on our website:
We are happy to continue to offer our employee recognition program. Keep those nominations coming!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


Recently, families were asked to express how often they checked the MLK News website.

The results were that 63% of families check this website at least once a week, and 72% check it at least once every two weeks.

Newsweek Magazine: Handwriting Feature

One of the curricular areas we're looking closely at this year at MLK is handwriting. My goal is to implement a comprehensive handwriting program by the fall of 2008, if not sooner.
With this end in mind, the MLK staff participated in professional development around handwriting on Tuesday, November 6. Parents may be interested in reading a feature in Newsweek! online (link below) about handwriting.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Academic Games: No Practice Tuesday, November 6

Due to the students having the day off on Tuesday, November 6, we will

not be holding Academic Games practice on that day.

Our next practice will be Thursday, November 8.

Mr. Vanek & Christy

Monday, November 05, 2007

Fruit and Vegetable Bar

Each and every day at MLK, the lunch program offers a free fruit and vegetable bar for all students to choose from to help make healthy choices. There are typically 4 - 5 fruits or vegetables from which to choose--and it is available to all students even if they bring lunch from home.

  • Students should take only what they believe they can eat during the lunch period.
  • Once a student goes through the line for the fruit and vegetable bar, they should let others go through the line before they get "seconds."