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December, January & February

Armenta Learning Academy

December 12, 2016

Give the Gift of Learning By Julie M. Armenta M.A. of my favorite vocabulary Educational & Family enhancing toys. These letters Specialist can be used to aid spelling, What better way to give a gift reading, vocabulary, and which enhances learning than grammar. Kids love the fun with some of my favorite colors. I recommend purchasing educational toys? two sets of letters for use in Leap Frog Products– My favorite longer sentences. Another fun educational toys! The Leap Pad reading and magnet related toy is the Magnetic ABC Book ($59.99) is an award-winning product that introduces children ($14.99). I highly recommend it out. Holidays to the magic of books, money, checking Happy populations, music, capitals, and Books in general make much more. This company also makes talking globes to increase geographical awareness, and many other games. Leap Frog has a variety of learning materials that reach the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners. Another of their wonderful products, the Turbo Twist wonderful gifts. I personally love ($39.99), builds vocabulary and books on tape, books that math skills. involve music, and ones with Science & Excitement– There’s bright illustrations and pictures. For the younger children, popthe Geo Safari Talking up books are a wonderful idea. Microscope ($35.99) that Next time you’re at the introduces children to the bookstore, take a look at The amazing world of insects and Tin Forest ($15.99). It’s a book spiders with an easy to use talking microscope. There are so full of rich and detailed many science kits out there, that illustrations, lyrical text, and it was difficult to pick a favorite. empowering messages. I’m certain that someone on your Some common kits include shopping list would benefit from Geography, General Science, such a book. Volcanoes, Geology, Problem Solving, and more. Try the Q & A– I highly recommend Mystery Rock ($24.99) and encyclopedias, children’s unearth four real gemstones dictionaries, and thesauruses including a genuine emerald, with pictures. Books of this three prehistoric fossils, and nature are not only informative, much more. but interesting. Reference books like Question & Answer Word Wonders– Read Spin ($13.00) magnetic letters are one Library ($39.99) can be on

specific topics such as the United States of America or nature. Perhaps one of the most enjoyable Q&A toys is the Brain Quest ($10.95) series. Each deck comes with over a 1,000 cards with questions and answers drawn right out of school materials. The series covers everything from math and science to English and history, and many more subjects. They make their card decks for all grades Pre-K through 8th. That way you can play with your friends, quiz your parents, or test yourself. Electronics & More– Word Warp ($24.95) reinforces spelling skills with an entertaining ‘twist.’ Quickly turn each spherical knob to the correct letter, press the button, and beat the clock! As the game progresses, it gets faster and crazier – spelling has never been so much fun! This game is appropriate for ages 8 and up. For more word practice for the younger children, try the Phonics Firefly ($39.95). Children learn the alphabet, letter sounds, and over 500 three-letter words! This is a musical and colorful light-up keyboard game. Through interactive learning toys, children build their phonics, reading, and spelling skills, and confidence. If you’re a little worded-out, why not try some math for a change of pace? Numbers come alive with Math Shark (Continued on page 2)

Reminder The Academy will be closed for Winter Recess December 23rd through January 6th. School resumes Monday, January 9th.

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Special points of interest: December is National Drunk Driving Prevention Month Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day December 7 Human Rights Day - December 10 Winter Recess Friday December 23 - Friday January 6 Happy New Year - January 1 January is National Mentoring Month Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day January 16 February is Library Lovers Month Lincoln’s Day - February 17 Presidents’ Day - February 20 Give the Gift of Learning Writer of the Quarter Student of the Month Community Events

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Success Stories


Standout Parent


New Learning Options


Back to School Photos


Armenta Events & Programs


(Continued from page 1) Give the Gift of Learning

($39.95). Children will want to practice their math on this hand held toy that plays more like a video game than a math quiz. Addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, decimals, or percentages are just a few of the topics covered by this math-smart game. It is even a fully functional calculator. There are eight skill levels to choose from, so pick the one that best suits your personal mathematical talents. Keep in mind computer games too! Group Learning– To spice up the classroom or to make a long car ride a bit more interesting try a multi-player game like Eggspert ($49.95). Teams or players test their knowledge on such topics as math, science, spelling, and history. Two different game modes let you either play the “Jeopardy” mode or the “Wheel of Fortune” mode. This game involves bright colors, flashing lights, and out loud questions or activities. This is a wonderful educational gift – I’d be excited to find it under my own Christmas tree. Back to Basics – Sidewalk Chalk (no more than a few dollars at the local drug or toy store) is a great way for your children to have fun while practicing spelling and math. How often is it that a child’s workspace is the entire Page 2

driveway? Make some lemonade or hot chocolate and stake out a clean piece of sidewalk. Try studying for vocabulary and spelling tests or testing your multiplication tables this way. It’s fun, a wonderful learning experience, and a great time for parent-child bonding. Another variation, but on a smaller scale, would be personal chalkboards or white boards and dry erase markers. These are wonderful study tools that encourage students to be creative in their learning processes. This definitely reaches out to the visual learners. The colors enhance the memory, interest, and creativity. Fitness Fun– Other toys and activities that can be wonderful and beneficial gifts are those that involve health and sports. Perhaps a new basketball and a coupon for a free game of horse would be a fun and creative gift to give. I personally enjoy fast paced games and activities such as bike riding, roller skating, and jet skiing! How about a new helmet to promote safety, or an iPod for long walks? Even the simplest gifts can be fun and encourage fitness. When was the last time you used a Hula Hoop or a Frisbee? Although December isn’t the ideal time for water sports, pool toys and beach games are great ideas too. Since it is winter, maybe winter

sportswear and gear would be a wonderful choice. Also, for colder weather, indoor sports and activities can be loads of fun. Trampolines, treadmills, and table tennis are great fun, healthy, and played with a roof over your head. No matter what gifts are given, remember that they come from the heart. I always thought that the best part of the holidays was watching my friends and family members open the gifts that I personally bought them, watching their expressions of excitement and pleasure, and listening to how “perfect” my gift was… That’s one of the best feelings in the whole world. Knowing that others appreciate your care and creativity is a heartwarming experience. I have found the educational toys are the ones my sons, nieces, nephews, and students enjoy the most; gifts that children can play and learn with at the same time. What better way to make a meaningful and lasting impression, than making a difference in the lives of those you love? Good luck in your shopping, and have a wonderful holiday season! Have a happy New Year too!

Writer of the Quarter Gianna Marie Van Essen is our Student Writer of the Quarter. Quarter Gianna is a talented student and artist. She has submitted writing samples weekly throughout the quarter. Her stories are creative and intelligent. Gianna is making tremendous progress at ALA!

Gianna’s mom, Lora Van Essen, donated books in for less fortunate children to Armenta Learning Academy. We would like to thank and honor Lora for her generous donation!

Aster Flowers By Gianna Van Essen

Scared, withered and afraid walked the little flower home. Waiting at the front steps sat Ma and Pa. With open arms and a love that’s strong, they picked the little flower up and kissed her on the cheek. They asked her why she looked sad and meek. She replied, summer came and went and took my friend away. My favorite flowery friend away, what now shall I do. Wait, ‘till next summer and what if the seasons change and I go away? What if I go away? Well, replied Ma, the seasons change, but we’ll be ok because we’re Aster flowers with blue and purple color. Flowers may die but we never will.

imagine it, you can achieve it; If you can dream it, you can become it.”

“If you can

William Arthur Ward

Second quarter Newsletter

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Success Stories “Mrs. Armenta, you're amazing! So wonderful with my son....we just love you!” - Cathy

“Thank you for what you've done for my gifted child. He is so challenged and loves Armenta! He is so intrigued with learning and you have helped him reach such a high level of education. You not only help him “Mrs. Armenta is truly and academically but also socially, emotionally and amazing and talented teacher! My daughter and I both love her personally. We are so and know we are unique. Mrs. grateful for that! Thank Armenta has the gi to reach you!” students with all different needs - Karen and is able to connect with parents, as well ”

“Thank you Mrs. Armenta for always being so nice and helping me to learn. I love coming here and I love seeing you! We always have so much fun.” - Lily

“I love this school! I can't wait to come here, it's been such a fun summer Mrs. Armenta and Mr. Smith are the best, they teach me in crea ve and fun ways. I love all my classes here, especially Science. ” - Declan

- Sheri Geoffreys

Armenta Parents Corner Meet one of our amazing parents, Missy Del Nero Pires (left) Missy is an outstanding and supportive parent. She is patient, kind and helpful. She is being recognized for her wonderful spirit and for all she gives to her children and others!

We encourage our parents to get involved at ALA! We are looking for volunteers and guest speakers to share their stories to impact and inspire our students. Please let us know if you’d like to volunteer! Second quarter Newsletter

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Back to School Fun & Success!

Nick has been taking writing classes this semester. He has advanced an entire grade Self--Discovery Programs for All Ages! level! We are so proud of you, Nick!

Hands-On Learning

Armenta Recommendations HopSkipDrive Armenta Learning Academy is happy to be working with HopSkip SkipDrive, a ride service for kids with HopSkipDrive, highlyhighly-vetted drivers, to help kids get to and from the Academy. Safety is HopSkip HopSkipDrive's SkipDrive's main concern: drivers are fingerprinted, backgroundbackground-checked and must be members of the Trustline Registry; riders have secret code words that drivers confirm; parents can follow rides along in their app and each ride is monitored by HopSkipDrive staff in real time as well. Use the code ARMENTA and you will receive a first ride free (up to $20 value). Second quarter Newsletter

Orange County Driver’s Ed Call 888888-405405-7558 Or Text 949949-412412-9494

Our Christmas Driving School Special: $180 For 6 Hours All driving lessons begin before or after a driver acquires their DMV drivers permit. All behind the wheel training is taught in a calm and caring manner. We offer FREE PickPick-Up and DropDrop-Off service to all cities Driver’s Training Service 7 Days a week Page 5

Community Events Dana Point Harbor 41st Annual Boat Parade of Lights

Friday, Dec 16th & Sat, Dec 17th 5:30pm-7:30pm Each Evening Festive Family activities will get you into the holiday spirit before the parade begins. Then join boaters from all around Orange County decorate their boats and vie for the awards of Judges Choice, Best Theme, Best Use of Lights, Best Animation, Most Colorful, Most Original, Best Sailboat, Best Powerboat and the Perpetual Trophy for the Yacht Club with the Most Entries, along with many other awards and cash prizes! Be part of the parade and enter your own boat, contact us at (949) 496-5794 or pick up an entry form at Dana Wharf Sportfishing or online at or You can view the parade free from anywhere in the Harbor, or make reservations at one of our restaurants to view it from a cozy and warm spot. Come on down and enjoy the sights and sounds of the season. Dana Wharf Sportfishing offers boat rides for the fun of and joining in the parade. The boat is located at Dana Wharf docks, 34675 Golden Lantern, Dana Point. Tickets are $29 for Adults/$19 for Children. Kids will be able to participate in the judging of the Dana Wharf Kid’s Cup Trophy. Call and make your reservations at (949) 496-5794. For more information call the Harbor Info line at (949) 496-5794 or visit our website at Dana Point Harbor is located at 34675 Golden Lantern, Dana Point, CA. Take the I-5 Freeway to Dana Point. Traveling South, exit the Pacific Coast Highway off ramp 86 veer right and turn left onto Dana Point Harbor Drive. Traveling North, exit Beach Cities off ramp 86 veer left. Turn left onto Dana Point Harbor Drive. Parking available at Doheny State Beach $2ph Letters to Santa

NOV 27th – DEC 21st Santa will visit your table while you enjoy a hot breakfast or dessert. Decorate a holiday cookie before joining Santa around the fireplace to listen to “The Night Before Christmas.” Bring your camera as individual photos will not be available for purchase. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Attendance is limited so please register early! Santa’s Village at City Hall 949-830-7066 / FREE

Santa’s Workshop

NOV 30th – DEC 21st Wednesday / Saturday / Sunday 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm Children are invited to share their holiday wishes with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Santa’s Workshop. FREE hot chocolate will be served. Bring your camera to capture the holiday magic. Santa’s Village at City Hall 949-830-7066 / FREE

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Volume 3, Issue 3

Community Events Films of Character

The Community of Character Committee presents films to illustrate our community character qualities. A brief discussion follows. 2:00 pm City Hall – Council Chambers 949-470-3062 FREE SUNDAY DEC 18th “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” On the outskirts of Whoville, there lives a green revenge-seeking Grinch who plans to ruin Christmas for every citizen in town. Rated PG SUNDAY JAN 15th “The Rosa Parks Story” A seamstress recalls events leading to her act of peaceful defiance that prompted the 1955 bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama. Not Rated SUNDAY FEB 19th “A More Perfect Union” In the summer of 1787, 55 delegates from twelve states came to Philadelphia to unify the United States and write a new Constitution. Not Rated Battle of the Bands

FRIDAY JAN 20th 4:00 pm - 11:00 pm Let’s rock and roll! Rock out to 10 bands battling to be battling to be dubbed the Best in Mission Viejo! Bands must attend a Mission Viejo High School to participate. Norman P. Murray and Community Center $5 / $10 at the door for guests / $25 per band call 949-859-4348 Polar Bear Plunge - Sierra Recreation Open House

SATURDAY JAN 28th 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm Enjoy carnival games, snowball fights, snow cones, hot chocolate, water slide and recreation swim. Enter to win FREE guest passes and a 1-month family membership to the Recreation Centers Sierra Recreation and Fitness Center Sierra Recreation and Fitness Center 949-859-4348 / FREE Community Health Fair

SATURDAY FEB 25th 10:00 am - 1:00 pm Companies and organizations will showcase their healthy options and services to the public. Get inspired to get on a healthy track! Free health screenings, giveaways, over 50 vendors and kids activities galore. Norman P. Murray Community and Senior Center FREE / 949-470-3062 / healthfair Page 7

Volume 3, Issue 3

Upcoming Events Armenta Angels

Armenta Pet Academy

Custom Care & Training We believe, at Armenta for your Pet Learning Academy, in the importance of reaching out to the community and Basic Puppy Skills Training & making a difference. We instill these Socialization values and principles to our students. Obedience/Problem Solving We have cleaned up beaches, raised Training—Cure digging, biting, money and collected food and toys for those less fortunate. This quarter, we barking and more! Tricks & Performance Training will be bringing Jackets of Love to local communities, sending a thank you Call Armenta Pet Academy for all letter to our soldiers, your pet training & collecting food for the hungry boarding needs. and books for children. Let us (949) 433433-0898 know if we can help in any area in your communities or any causes you support. We love to make a difference in your lives and the lives of those around us all.

Mrs. Armenta, Hannah & Brody

The Gift of Giving Toy & Clothing Collection ALA will be collecting donations of new, unopened toys, games, books, crayons, markers, clothing etc. to donate to needy children this year. This is the season of giving and not everyone is as fortunate as we may be. Please share the gift of giving, and help a child feel the joy of this Holiday season. December Contest This month ALA will be holding a contest to see which student will work the most volunteer hours. Students just need to log their service hours and have them signed by a supervisor or parent. We will tally up the hours at the end of the month, and whoever spent the most time volunteering will win a prize! Page 8

Jackets of Love This year we are collecting jackets, coats, sweaters and sweatshirts for local homeless people. Winter can get very cold when a person is living on the streets. Jackets are a more expensive item that are frequently unavailable to the homeless. We will be collecting at ALA all the way up to Winter Recess then taking all the jackets to Los Angeles for distribution. Book Drive Armenta is collecting books for the Million Books for Kids Campaign. We will help them with their goal to provide 1,000,000 books for needy children this year! Bring in your books in December, or go to the web site and make a monetary donation.

December - Books, Clothes & Toys Drive

December - Volunteering & Candy Jar Guess Contest

Dec. 1 - Secret Santa Begins

Dec. 8 - Armenta Olympics & Games

Dec. 23 thru Jan. 6 - Winter Recess

Jan. 9 - School Resumes, Second Semester Begins

Jan. 16 - Martin Luther King Jr. Day Holiday (no school)

Jan. 19 - Letters of Love to our Soldiers

Jan. 26 - New Year’s Resolution Essay Submissions Due

Feb. 14 - Valentine’s Day Party, Science & Craft Day

Feb. 17 - Lincoln Holiday (no school)

Feb. 20 - Washington Holiday (no school)

Armenta Referral Program Refer a student to Armenta Learning Academy and receive a free tutoring session to use or gift to someone for the holidays! Call ALA for more details.

ALA Winter 2016 Newsletter  

Our Winter 2016 Newsletter is here! We have great content and articles including Success stories, Student of the Month and Writer of the Qua...