Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Book Fair Thanks!

The King School Scholastic & Used Book Fairs were a huge success! We raised over $2000 for the PTO! We would like to thank everyone who volunteered at the King School Book Fairs (before, during, & after)...and all the wonderful King School families who purchased both new & used books. Additionally, every classroom received a book for their classroom library as a thank you to the teachers & students for their support. We also purchased several books for the King School Library!

Thanks for all your support!

-Susan Gechter & Diane Alson :)

PTO Positions for 2009-2010

Nomination forms were sent home in last week's Friday folders for the 2009-2010 PTO Executive Board of Directors & Committee Chairpersons. This form lists every single position (both Executive Board of Directors & Committee Chairpersons). There are more than 50 positions available. Help plan events, activities, and more!

Do you want more information about a specific committee or board position? Check out the descriptions (& get another nomination form) at: http://king.a2schools.org/king.pto/files/file.pdf . Or, contact the existing chair (all chairs are listed in the King School Directory).

Nomination forms are due to the King School office (PTO mailbox) by Thursday, April 9. Nominate yourself! Contact kingpto@gmail.com for additional questions.

Thank you for volunteering...and here's to a fantastic 2009-2010 year!

Silent Auction: Friday April 24, 2009 3 Weeks Countdown!

Thank you to the following King families and teachers for their
donations to the Silent Auction:

Mrs. Jarjoura; The Myers/Fingar Family: Anne Flucke (King Alumni Family); The Barnett Family

Please take a moment to look at this link to the Volunteer Calendar and see where you can donate an hour or two toward the success of the auction:


For questions or information:
Lisa Kohn

Ann Arbor PTO Council News Page

Upcoming events posted by PTOC:

Washtenaw Area Council for Children's Annual Conference, Friday, April 24, 2009. This year's conference is "INTO THE WILD: A Journey Inside the Middle School Mind." There is a link to a downloadable brochure on our home page www.washtenawchildren.org

Also, a special Internet Safety event for parents (and interested others), "Safety'Net: Tech Tips for Parenting in the Digital Age" on Thursday, May 7, from 7-8:30 PM. A flier for the event can be reached by clicking the link on the home page.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you!

Marcia Dykstra, Program Director
Washtenaw Area Council for Children
Phone - (734) 434-4215
Fax - (734) 434-4243

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Do you want to dunk Mr. Karr at the Ice Cream Social?

This year my participation in the dunktank will occur for the first 30 minutes of the Ice Cream Social. However, you’ll need to think ahead if you hope to get me wet! Ill be offering throws this year to both parents and students in the following ways:
1. High bidders at the Silent Auction – you will be able to bid for three throws each at the Silent Auction. Remember: Proxy Bids will be accepted for those who can’t make it to school the evening of the Silent Auction.
2. Selected students who achieve a yet unannounced challenge during the month of May. Names of students who throw will be drawn in a raffle.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Silent Auction: One Month Countdown!

Silent Auction: Friday, April 24, 2009

Thank you to the following teachers and families who have donated to the Silent Auction.

Lisa & David Joseph, Susan Aaronson; Erin Zurbuchen; Ms. Laura Wayne, Mr. Huyck, Mr. Petty, The Schorer Family, The Chauhan Family

Take a look at these generous and interesting donations:

An afternoon of basketball with 2 King teachers; "Paint like the Masters" --an art class to learn brush strokes, light and color like the masters,:A nutritional consultation and pantry makeover to create delicious, nutritious meals everyday; 4 Red Wings tickets and parking pass; A Super Mario Basket with t-shirts and keychain collection; 4 music lessons on a string instrument (violin, viola, base, cello); art lessons for a budding Monet and art consultation for high schooler or adult.

Please use this Doodle Calendar to see where there are volunteer needs before, during and after the auction.


For auction information or questions:

Lisa Kohn, Chair

Student Council News: King Goes Green

Students and staff at King have been working very hard to complete all of the necessary points or jobs to become Green School certified by the State of Michigan. To become certified, the school must complete at least “ten points” from a given list of criteria for becoming “green.” We have completed the following points: recycling paper, cardboard, containers, batteries, & printer cartridges; implementing an energy savings program; reusing magazines and newspapers; the media center has a plan for updating and using ecological materials.

One point (that should count for five) is our new composting endeavor spearheaded by Ms. Shah. All students will be treated to a composting skit, performed by our 5th grade green composting team (Zoe C., Jessica H., Mabel R., Yasmeena N., Margo K., Laura H., Alice D., Melissa N., Danielle B., Savoy D., Olivia C., Evan W., Bethany G.) on March 30 in the afternoon.

Two points we need to complete are adopting an endangered species and organizing a corresponding presentation. Student council members will use Powerpoint presentations to show students our progress with the Green School initiative, including the raptors that live at the Leslie Science Center. Following this presentation, students will vote on which raptor they want to adopt as a student body. Leslie Science Center will then present “Hunters of the Sky” on April 20, bringing with them our adopted raptor!

Our last points will be completed as part of our Earth Week celebrations. This will include: 5th graders creating six activities for our first ever Earth Day festival on April 22; Ms. Wayne is helping students create & organize an Earth Week poster contest; and all students will be cleaning up our playground and surrounding areas during this week.

Parents are invited to help during the Earth Day festival on April 22. K-2 children will be participating between 12-1:30 p.m. ; 3rd & 4th graders between 2- 3:30 p.m. Please contact Dr. M. if you can help supervise an activity. mailto:michali1@aaps.k12.mi.us

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

World Languages At King For 2009-10

The Ann Arbor Public Schools, in partnership with the University of Michigan School of Education, will implement Elementary World Language next fall as a special class during the school day. The collaborative program will include third grade students in all AAPS schools, with planning underway to expand in the future. Students will be learning Spanish. New language learning emerged as a high priority for parents in a recent district survey as well as the district's strategic plan. You can find additional details about the world language program here.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Academic Games Update: Another GREAT Year

Hello King School Parents,

As our Academic Games season comes to a close, we want to take the opportunity to thank our King PTO for all of their support. We really appreciate all that you do for us.

This year, Christy, Mrs. Vanek, and I coached 26 students on Tuesday evenings and Fridays after school. They learned to play Equations, On-Sets, On-Words, and Presidents. Several of our students attended Saturday tournaments in Ann Arbor, Detroit, and Ypsilanti.

Overall, the students really seemed to enjoy the games, learning, practicing, and competing. Some students even attended the 2-1/2 day State Super Tournament in Grand Rapids, hosted by the Michigan League of Academic Games.

We plan to start King Academic Games again in the fall, and if anyone is interested in more information about AG Summer Camps in Ann Arbor, please give us a call.


Mike Vanek

More Academic Games Resources:
Local: Clague Academic Games - http://clagueag.blogspot.com/
State: Michigan League of Academic Games - http://www.mlagonline.com/
National: Academic League of America - http://www.agloa.net/

Open House/Music Night Dates

The spring concert and open houses are fast approaching, with the third graders kicking off the season on Thursday, April 23rd. Other grade level dates are:

Kindergarten April 28th
First Grade May 14th
Second Grade May 7th
Fourth Grade April 30th
Fifth Grade May 28th

Open house is at 6:30 PM in the classrooms, with the music program beginning promptly at 7:00 in the multi-purpose room. I look forward to seeing you there.

Mrs. Vanek

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Come and Celebrate Youth Art and Music Month at Palio's

The following King students Still Life Paintings are on Exhibit at Palio's Restaurant. (downtown Ann Arbor) 347 S. Main Street. The reception for KingSchool is on Sunday March 22nd, 2009 at 1PM. You are welcome to stop by Palios for dinner during the evenings through March till Mid-April.


Benjamin Pollitz -K
Nadia Hansen-1st
Siena Smith-1st
Mirian Nweze -1st
Kamoni Cummings 1st
Michelle Deng 1st
Anton Pereklita 2nd
Jadyn Smith 2nd
Emma Helmich 2nd
Joanna Sheng 2nd
Megan Gruber 2nd
Brandon Geng 2nd
Jaylin Johnson 2nd
Jinsung Huh 2nd
Bertrand Chu 2nd
Henry Zhou 2nd
Gaby Shapo 2nd
Afua Nkansah 2nd
Emily Gitilin 2nd
Minna Tremonti 2nd
Umang Bhajani 2nd
Sarah Wamster 2nd
Ivy Han 2nd
Saulius Galvanayskas 2nd
Charle Levine 3rd
Megan He 3rd
Laura Deng 3rd
Saskia Van Nieuwstadt 3rd
Jennifer Zhu 3rd
Celeste Pan 3rd
Iris Campbell 3rd
Xavier Iniguez 3rd
Kazuma Kawai 3rd
Serina Suzuki 3rd
Claire Deng 3rd
Daniel Lee 3rd
Ryo Sugimura 4th
Akane Kawamato 4th
Keyen Yockey 4th
Jessica Zhang 4th
Samuel Kohn 4th
Aylin Cynal 4th
Eric Chen 4th
Grace LI 4th
Sterling Martin 4th
Kallan Roan 4th
Tina Galia 4th
Sabrina Wu 5th
Michi Ota 5th
Clay Patterson 5th
Quentin Millette 5th
Charles Tsao 5th
Jaz Johns 5th
Flynn O' Donnell 5th
Nesma Daoud 5th
Daniel Geng 5th
Susanna Sheng 5th
Amar Nigam 5th
Yuna Kawai 5th
Jenny Zhang 5th
Samantha Lin 5th
Brian Cong 5th
Mabel Redondo 5th
Alex Alajbegovic 5th
Alice Deng 5th

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Week 2: March is Reading Month!

Info every parent should know: King's Media Center in the 21st Century.

While our library might look a lot like the school libraries we all grew up with, times have changed as schools work to prepare our students for the technology-rich, information-laden world they live in. Yes, we still read stories and check out books, two things of great value of fun. But read on to see samples of what our kids are doing during their library and/or lab time (together called ILT: Information Literacy and Technology).

Kindergartners are practicing alphabetical ordering skills--the necessary foundation for accessing library books, using indexes, etc.

1st graders are making classroom nonfiction animal books using facts gathered from books, the internet, and magazines. They'll learn how to use their own words when taking notes and to give citation credit.

2nd graders are studying biographies, both in the classroom and during Media Center time.

3rd graders have spent time working with the Dewey decimal system as they practice effective access skills on our online library catalog.

4th graders used a variety of resources, including our Grolier database and Kids InfoBits from the Michigan Electronic Library (MEL), to collect info about famous African Americans.

And 5th graders discussed internet safety with me using an FBI website.

Sprinkle in a dragon story, some booktalks, and perhaps a tent and some flashlights, and THAT'S the library of today!

Happy Reading Month! Mrs. Ann O'Keefe okeefea@aaps.k12.mi.us

Week 2 WILD Challenge: Return to "old-fashioned" fun: see if someone--or everyone--in your family can tell a story orally--no reading allowed! How's your imagination? Can you make a beginning, introduce a problem, and then end it with a solution? Got good names for your characters? A setting? Remind your kids that this is how stories were told around campfires, in the WILD, for all time.

Additional Volunteers Needed at Book Fairs

We are looking for additional volunteers to help at the King School Scholastic & Used Book Fairs. We especially need help with setting up the fairs on Wednesday, 3/18 between 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm. Additionally, we need help during the book fairs on Thursday, 3/19 between 1:00 pm - 9:00 pm. Volunteer for as little as an hour or two, or all day!

To volunteer, go to:

In advance, thank you for your help!

Used Books Needed -- Book Fairs are Next Week!

The used book collection is on-going through 3/18. Please collect your children & adult books (both fiction & non-fiction), DVDs, CDs, games, puzzles, & magazines for the King School Used Book Fair. What about the books your kids brought home from the used book fair last year? Donate those too! Books may be dropped off in the used book donations box near the King School office or by the front door. Students may give them to their teacher to put outside their classroom door.

Check out our website about the fairs at: http://bookfairs.scholastic.com/homepage/kingschoolpto
Look for additional information about the King School Scholastic & Used Book Fairs in your child's Friday Folder this week!

Silent Auction: Friday, April 24, 2009

Thank you to the following King Families who have donated to the Silent Auction thus far:

Alena and Ray Stocking; Elsie Orb; Dr. Jennifer Kim; Michael and Jane Niemi; Karl, Heather & Hannah Schweitzer; Mary Morency; The Gechter Family, Dr. Todd Roberts; Max Brodkey; Kim Markey; The Fishman Family; Ron Hermann; The Kimball Wright Family; Mike and Darla Dubin, Tony and Amy Iannone; Lily Au and Ken Morishima; George Schumacher; Mrs. O'Keefe; Mrs. Vanek,:Christy Vanek

These are some of the generous and interesting items up for bidding for the Silent Auction:

Personal bedtime story reading at your home by Mrs. O'Keefe; A planter container garden; 2 sets of 10 Perrenials from the garden of Barb Vanek; 2 hours of academic games coaching; 2 sets of reserved seats for International Night; Cranium WOW game; hand-knit baby sweater set; Botox party; Men's Carhartt coat; 4 tickets to the Tigers game 8/16/09 in the "Tigers Den"; a fairy adobe door; autographed basketball from UM Women's Team; coffee with the Superintendent; 4 Tigers tickets, 20 seats behind home plate; nickel series coin set; Women's Night Out party 5/1/09; gift certificates to Showcase Cinema, Ocean Nails, Seoul Garden and Panera Bread; Antigua time share; 2 hours of computer support and service; A day on the lake, including Pontoon boat ride and BBQ; sushi making party for kids; a "Secret Box" guaranteed to feed the soul; 3 days of summer fun activities; photo album of King life; copies of Chicken Soup for Kids; and Chicken Soup for Preteens; group outings to serve meals at the Salvation Army kitchen and Liberty Plaza; bird watch with Washtenaw Audubon Society.

There are two key positions that need filling: Volunteer coordinator and Food Chair.
The Volunteer Coordinator would spend 2 hrs week during the last 3 weeks making sure that there are enough people in designated slots. Total is 6 hrs over 3 weeks.

The Food Chair would negotiate food prices, obtain tableware, pay vendors and coordinate the International Buffet. Working from last year's spread sheet will streamline the task. 2-3 hrs before auction night. 2-3 hours on auction night.

What goods or services can you contribute?
Everybody loves a party: offer to host a tailgaiting or euchre party; Donate a few of your favorite wines; Offer a home cooked meal; Donate lessons; photographers, gardeners, dessert chefs, we need you.

For any questions or to get more information, contact:

Lisa Kohn, Auction Chair

Friday, March 06, 2009

Thursday, March 05, 2009

You Can’t Bully Me! Presentation

This has been recommended by the King PTO . . . it looks very good.

You Can’t Bully Me! - Saturday, March 7, 10 AM-12 noon - Elmo's Hideaway - 220 South Main Street, Ann Arbor - below Elmo's Main Street T-shirts

Sponsored by the Ann Arbor Storytellers' Guild and The Ark

An interactive program by Chicago area storyteller, Sue Black. Sue uses stories and conversation to help highlight the behaviors of the bully, the bullied and the bystander, but she doesn't stop there. The next step is to empower students, teachers and parents with the skills they need to make a difference: Communicate a shared vocabulary about bullying. Cultivate a culture of inclusion where differences are respected. Celebrate problem-solving and conflict resolution skills. Admission: $5.00 adults - Free to students age 8 - 14 accompanied by a parent.. To register: call or e-mail Judy Schmidt 734-971-5763 - FransDotir@aol.com or
get registration form on the Downloads page of the AASG website: www.annarborstorytelling.org

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Parent Meeting For Incoming 6th-8th Grade Clague Students

All King parents of 5th grade students are invited to a parent meeting at Clague Middle School to get information about the transition to middle school.

March 12, 2009
6:30 - 8:30 PM
Clague Middle School

AAPS budget forum: join A2 Parents for Schools on Thursday!

Help us put the "public" back in our public schools!

Join us at the second and last AAPS budget forum -
this Thursday, March 5, 7-9pm at Forsythe Middle School

These budget meetings are among the few opportunities for parents and the public in general to learn about and have a voice in shaping next year's AAPS school budget before the final vote is taken. Hosted by AAPS Superintendent Todd Roberts and Deputy Superintendent Robert Allen (basically, the CEO and CFO of our public schools), these meetings help spell out what has been happening with our schools' funding and offer the chance to talk about where we go from here.

The Federal stimulus won't work miracles; there are still hard choices to be made. Be a part of the solution!

We Need Your Used Books!

The King School Book Fairs are this month. The used book collection starts this week and runs through 3/18. We will accept fiction & non-fiction books for both children & adults. We will also accept DVDs, CDs, VHS tapes (originals only) as well as games & puzzles (please make sure all pieces are included).

New this year...we are accepting both adult's & children's magazines to donate to various organizations in the Ann Arbor area that are in need or reading materials in their waiting room.

You may drop off your donated books in the boxes near the King School office or near the front entrance. Books may also be dropped off in your child's classroom.

Check the bar graph in the front hall to see how many books we collect each day! Let's see if we can we beat last year's donations of over 4,000 books!

Thank you, in advance, for your book (& other materials) donations!

Casting Call... Volunteers Needed at Book Fairs!

We need volunteers to help at the King School Scholastic & Used Book Fairs on 3/18 - 3/20. Help with set-up, running the fair (including restocking, organizing, assisting students, cashier, and more), and with taking it apart/clean-up. Volunteer for as little as an hour or two, or all day!

To volunteer, go to:

In advance, thank you for your help!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Silent Auction Date Moved To April 24

The date for the PTO's Annual Silent Auction has been moved from
April 3 to April 24. The excitement will begin at 6 PM.

5,000+ Hits On King School Website in 08-09

Over the last 184 days, the MLK School website has had 5,024 hits! This is great news. I'm glad families are finding the site useful.

In case you didn't know, all of the following can be found on the MLK School website:
  • Updated school calendar
  • School announcements
  • Staff directory with email addresses
  • Lunch menu
  • Link to the school media center website
  • PTO information
  • Links to important district information
If you have suggestions for other website additions, please email them to Mr. Karr.

Math Olympiad Is Coming To King School

Dear parents,

I am happy to announce that, with the support of PTO and Mr. Karr, King school will add another exciting academic enrichment program to benefit our students—the Math Olympiad for Elementary and Middle Schools (MOEMS). The MOEMS has been a major math contest for school children for 30 years. In the 2007-2008 year, 150,000 students participated in the program, representing all 50 US states and 25 countries. Its stated goals are:
• To stimulate enthusiasm and a love for Mathematics
• To introduce important Mathematical concepts
• To teach major strategies for problem solving
• To develop Mathematical flexibility in solving problems
• To strengthen Mathematical intuition
• To foster Mathematical creativity and ingenuity
• To provide for the satisfaction, joy, and thrill of meeting challenges
Starting from the fall of 2009, King school will have a Math Olympiad Team for 4th and 5th graders. Everyone who wants the challenge is welcome, regardless of the level of math proficiency. We will hold after-school training sessions, where we will introduce problem-solving strategies, and work in small groups on word problems. All students on the team are strongly encouraged to participate in the contests, but they have the option to participate in the training only.

The contests will be held at King school once every month from November to March. In each contest, students will have 30 minutes to solve 5 word problems. All participants will receive Participation Certificates, high scorers will also receive gold, silver or bronze plaques and trophies. Nationwide, about half of the participants receive plaques or trophies.

Student sign-up and parent volunteer recruitment for the 2009-2010 year will begin in the fall. At that time, we will also hold an informational meeting for all interested parents.

The training and contests will run from October to March, roughly 3 times a month. The long time-span helps make math enrichment a continuous process. But it also requires commitment from students and parents. To give students a chance to try out the activity, we will run a math club in May and June, 2009. The club is open to all 3rd and 4th graders (who will be eligible for MOEMS in the fall). We will meet one hour a week after school for four weeks. This will be a good math enrichment opportunity; however, anyone who does not sign up for the club can still sign up for the Math Team in the fall.

The sign-up form for the math club in May and June will be available in April, as well as parent volunteer sign-up. We welcome all kinds of help from parents. Meanwhile, if you have questions, please email jingliu01@gmail.com or ljing@umich.edu .

Jing Liu, PICO (Person In Charge of the Olympiad)

Raising a Son? Need Help? - Come To King 3/4 @! 7

Raising Strong and Gentle Sons Workshop
Wednesday, March 4, 7:00-9:00 PM
King School Multi-Purpose Room
Speaker: Carole Lapidos, M.S.W.

Boys are growing up in a very confusing world. There are so many conflicting messages about what it means to be a boy and a man. If boys are taking their cues from the culture, then they are losing access to a very important part of themselves. Parents raising sons today face many challenges. This workshop will explore the topics that impact how boys see themselves and provide strategies for parents to stay connected to their sons.

Carole Lapidos is the co-founder and director of Raising Strong & Confident Daughters, a local organization dedicated to helping young children develop a strong sense of self-esteem. Registration is required. Please contact Laurie Galia by phone, 734-996-9946 or by email at lquain@umich.edu to register for this workshop by February 27. This workshop is being sponsored by the King School PTO.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Silent Auction - Our PTO's Biggest Fundraiser

The 2008 Silent Auction raised over $20,000 for field trips, WESO materials, teacher mini-grants, writing workshops with EMU, Leslie Science Center programming and much, much more.

With one month to go, we are not anywhere near that mark. And while we budgeted for a smaller auction this year, we need a concerted effort from everyone to make this event even half as successful as last year.

How Can You Help?

Offer to call 5 businesses who have supported us in the past and likely will donate something this year.

Offer to take on a leadership position--Needed positions are:

Volunteer coordinator--this person helps find/schedule volunteers for table set up Thurs night, display set up Friday, registration, check-out and clean up duties.

Food coordinator--this person plans and orders a menu, purchases plates/serving ware, and ensures vendors are paid.

Filing coordinator--on auction day this person leads a team to handle registrations, makes files for each registrant and sorts winning bid sheets. Terri Brodkey (previous chair) has perfected this and unfortunately will be out of town April 3rd.

Donation, Donations, Donations

Half of our monies raised were from internal donations. Some suggestions:

Offer a home cooked meal for delivery; Lessons?--music, skating, chess, language, painting; host a party--it's 80's night with big hair, Madonna, and shoulder pads; donate travel award miles or hotel reward points; offer your time share; gardeners can share perrenials; bakers share favorite desserts; host a children's party or event such as "learning magic" or "fun with math"; create a collection of your favorite wines; donate a themed basket such as Poke'mon or consider hosting a tailgate party some Saturday in Sept, Oct or Nov.

Unable to Volunteer or Donate?

Please send a check to King PTO with Silent Auction in the memo line. This fundraiser requires the support of every King family.

For information on how to help or to offer a donation, contact Lisa Kohn, Auction Chair.

lkohn@umich.edu or 734-417-7129.

Reading Month: Week 1 Challenge

Week 1 WILD Reading Challenge: (“Bear” with us, we’ve got a wild animal theme!) Pick one evening or weekend day and have the whole family stop everything (kind of like hibernation) and read: it can be one book read aloud for all of you, or everyone can curl up like bear cubs with their chosen favorites (magazines and newspapers ALWAYS count, but let’s not choose something on a screen for this challenge). Turn off all jungle noise, tv’s and phones, and see what 15 minutes of JUST BOOKS AND PEACE feels like. No monkeying around! Ask your child to tell me about it!

March is Reading Month!

While King students love to read all year long, March is the month when we traditionally celebrate READING in a big way. What’s going on?
*Check out the family letter that came home with an optional activity sheet.
*Ask your kids what’s happening at school (something about a lion?)
*Watch these eNotes each week!

Week 1 Notes: Check it out! Kids and books at King

All King kids get to check out two books at a time (plus extras as assignments require)--and this month they get to have four! We don’t charge fines for late books, we just like to get them back when you are done with them. Sometimes a long book needs to be kept for 3 or 4 weeks, while in other cases kids get new books every few days.

Every few days? Yes, there are brief times each day when the library is open (like every day from starting bell till 9am) even if it isn’t your child’s weekly scheduled day. It has to be a good time for the teacher too, but oftentimes kids can scoot in to exchange books quite frequently.

Do you often forget to return books on “library day”? Kids can return their books ANY day, just slide them into the backpacks when you think of it. That way they’ll be all set to find and take out great new stuff when they visit the Media Center.

I welcome questions and comments anytime; email is best since I teach most of the day. Thanks for helping King grow happy readers!
Mrs. Ann O’Keefe