Matterhorn Spring 2013
Parents’ Association Newsletter
End of the School Year Wrap Up!
The end of the year is approaching quickly but have no fear! We have lots of plans and opportunities in store for your family next year. As always, we welcome any thoughts or suggestions you might have. Please do not hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org (be sure to indicate Summit PA in the subject line) with anything on your mind including suggestions of activities you would like to see at Summit and any volunteer interests you might have. The focus of Parents’ Association is to channel all the wonderful energy and passion that Summit parents have and turn that into wonderful opportunities to be involved in a variety of ways. There are so many opportunities to connect at Summit both in social settings as well as settings that expand our minds and hearts. We are, above all else, a community that desires our children, as well as ourselves as parents, to develop our full potential. Please be sure and complete the forms that mail to your home later this month. These forms will give us the chance to understand your areas of volunteer interests. Keep in mind that most volunteer opportunities aren’t large time commitments. Volunteering at Summit does give your child a sense of pride knowing you are a piece of the inner workings of his or her experience at school. Without a strong volunteer base, so much of what gets done on campus could never happen. Thanks for all you do! — Sarah McAuley, President-Elect
What a f un year at Summit School! Thanks to all the wonderful parents who find time to help out, the Parents’ Association h a s h a d a not h er successful year of fund raisers, including our magical auction. I cannot express my appreciation enough to each and every one of you for all your help and
Suggested Activities for Spring & Summer • Enjoy the sights and scents of the flowers and flowering shrubs
• See how many insects you can find • Draw the flowers • Observe birds that are attracted by berries
• Refill the water basin (when it’s installed)
support throughout another busy year! Your combined efforts and many talents have made my job easy. It has been a pleasure working with you all, and I will truly miss the opportunities to meet you and work with you on a daily basis! I know you will continue your support next year as well. Please look for the volunteer form enclosed with the Close of School Information to indicate on what committee you can help next year. The Parents’ Association would love the support! — Denise Hickman, President
New Gardens If you have taken a stroll through our school’s campus recently, you might have noticed something new sprouting from the ground in the space between the First through Third Grades Building and the Kindergarten wing. The new gardens have sprung from the ideas of the teachers in these areas, in collaboration with Deanna Moss, Summit’s garden consultant. The design of the gardens began as early as 2008. Schematic plans were drawn by Sara Edie Simmons-Fife Boyd, and continued to develop until Robin Coffey began installation in fall of 2012. Good things can take a while! With installation of the final few shrubs in the spring of 2013, the gardens are nearing completion. On each side of the semicircular bike path (for the After School children) are two gardens, each enclosed by berms of shading trees, shrubs and perennials. Plants have been chosen to provide bloom, scent, and seasonal interest throughout the year. The garden on the left as you face the building features pathways for walking among the plantings. Our youngest children will have many subjects for their sketch pads, as crocuses, snow drops, and bleeding hearts emerge in spring and as butterflies visit the later flowering plants that were selected to attract them.
The garden on the right is the relocated memorial garden dedicated to Abner Wright ’02, whose original garden was located near the old Second Grade wing. This garden, with a grassed interior, has Japanese elements suggesting a contemplative mood and supporting the Second Grade’s study of Japanese culture. In addition to plants from Japan, Abner’s Garden features a small Karesansui or “dry landscape” garden of sand and stone. The sand can be raked by students in patterns suggesting the flow of water. While serving the curricular interests of our students, the gardens should also bring pleasure to the numerous passersby who enjoy Summit’s campus. Plant labels will soon satisfy the curiosity of the botanically curious! All gardens evolve, and we look forward to seeing ours take form as shrubs and trees mature!
Summit Auction 2013 Congratulations to all volunteers, especially Dana Stallings and Jennifer Hudson, for making this year’s auction truly Magical! We send special thanks to those of you who shared your time and talents to make this year’s auction a great success. We are proud to announce that we raised over $105,000 for Summit. Thank you for participating! We were glad to see so many parents and friends enjoying the special fun filled auction night with us. Our décor was beautiful, our attendees were happy and the food catered by Flik was delicious.
All of our auction items were well received, with thanks to our two great auctioneers Kim Bailey and Steve Combes. Without their efforts we could not have reached our goal.
THE PARENTS’ ASSOCIATION 2012-2013 email@example.com
The Parents’ Association, an organization of parent volunteers, coordinates activities to benefit our children. The Association, led by officers and committee chairs, enlist other parents’ help. The Association also conducts fund-raising activities to underwrite special projects for the school.
President Denise Hickman
Auction Jennifer Hudson, Chair Dana Stallings, Chair
Graduation Ginny Thomas, 9th Debbie Malmo, 8th
Back to School Bash Mary Lynn Sullivan, Chair Elliott Turner, Chair
Hospitality Vera Satterfield, Chair Shelley Holden, Asst. Chair
Book Fair Meredith Peterson, Chair Anna Singer, Asst. Chair
Library Lisa Thompson, Lower Cheryl Gross, Upper
Costume Room Joyce Carson, Chair
Matterhorn Elizabeth Wild, Editor Caleb Clauset, Editor & Designer Isabelle Berquin, Assoc. Editor Martin Tucker, Photographer
President-Elect Sarah McAuley Secretary Elizabeth Hollan Treasurer Louisa Petersen Assistant Treasurer April Holder Nominating Kim Bailey
Ea$y Money Michelle Beck, Chair Gardening Mary Lynn Sullivan, Chair Colby Murphy, Asst. Chair
Thank you also to the grandparents who participated in the Valentine card fund raiser. You exceeded our expectations and raised over $20,000. Wow! We really do have the best family support! Hannibal the magician was truly amazing with his tricks and illusions. He even stopped by the Summit sleepover and gave a 15 minute show to the participants, making the children’s evening more memorable, too. Thanks to all who came and celebrated our wonderful school with us. You made the evening a wonderful success.
May Frolics Kristie Blanco, Chair Clare Quadland, Chair Tabatha Brantley, Asst. Chair Katie Grubbs, Asst. Chair
School Store Katie Grubbs, Chair Alison Sweeney, Asst. Chair
New Families Claire Calvin, Chair
Upper School Athletic Liaisons Charles Corpening Caroline Grubbs Lara Wilson
Office Support Sharon Sturkie, Chair
Volunteer Coordinator Denise Hickman, Chair
Parents’ Forum Jennifer Grosswald, Chair Suzanne Campbell, Asst. Chair
Wrapping Paper Carlie Stubbs, Chair Suzanne Campbell, Asst. Chair
School Pictures Anna Singer, Chair Beth Probst, Asst. Chair
Social Thinking: A Building Block We know there is more to success than arithmetic and grammar. Research confirms the notion that successful people have certain qualities or character traits that impact their ability to interact with the world around them. Ellen Galinsky, author of Mind in the Making, lists skills which enable our children to experience more success both in the classroom and beyond. These skills include self-control, perspective-taking, focus, making connections, critical thinking, communication, and the willingness to take on challenges. This list includes things we often think of as academic skills such as critical thinking but it goes beyond that notion to include skills such as self-control and the ability to see things from a different point of view. Galinsky’s ideas are shared by many in education and developmental arenas. At Summit School we also believe in educating the whole child which includes the social-emotional aspect of development. Over the years, different terms have been used for teaching social-skills but the basic premise is the belief that social skills can and should be taught. Social skills are more than eye-contact
and the ability to carry on a conversation. When considering social skill development we understand that social skills involve a deeper understanding of how we, as individuals, connect to our environment including the space and people around us. Having social skills or social thinking enables us to adapt appropriately to different situations and navigate these various circumstances. Rather than teaching students rote patterns of response, our goal is to teach students to think about the process itself. We want to develop students who understand how thinking affects behavior and how behavior affects the environment. We begin in the early years by teaching and exploring how the brain (thinking) helps us as we move through the day. For a first grader this might be learning how to use “whole-body listening” as a friend shares in morning meeting or how to “think with our eyes” to find clues in the environment that help us know what is appropriate behavior for that situation. As students grow and develop, they are exposed to more specific skills and ideas and given the opportunity to explore and discuss these concepts with their teachers
Spotlight: The Exploring Brain with Don Flow and Andy Chan
Creativity and innovation take place at the intersection of nature and nurture, the individual and the community, spontaneity and discipline, imagination and problem solving, common sense and theory. They are both enabled and constrained by culture and ultimately, when realized, transform culture.
and classmates. Some of these concepts and skills include problem-solving, community building, communication, teamwork, service to others, managing one’s emotions, empathy, and respect. At Summit School, we utilize different tools to supplement our teaching of social thinking such as Responsive Classroom strategies, the Second Step Social Emotional Learning Curriculum, friendship groups, guidance classes, and teachable moments in the daily interactions of our students. All children want to belong and feel a part of the world around them. By recognizing this need and the important skills or tools a child can use in order to meet this need, we address an essential aspect of a child’s development. Taking time to make social thinking a regular part of our curriculum enhances both academic learning and the overall experience of children as they learn to work and play collaboratively with their peers here at school and as they interact with the world beyond Summit School. — Bekah Sidden, Lower School Dean of Students
Don Flow, Chairman and CEO at Flow Companies, and Andy Chan, Wake Forest University’s Vice President for Personal and Career Development, will address how people and organizations can enable creativity and innovation to flourish. You are warmly invited to come and learn on Wednesday, May 1 at 7 p.m. Bring a friend!
At 4:30 p.m. on April 23 in the Dining Hall, Summit hosted a new event called Inspiring Connections Across Generations. It is designed to support grandparents, aunts, uncles or friends who play key roles in the lives of children. Ted and Becky Dougherty facilitated this discussion. Summit is delighted to have this new program that provide ways for grandparents and other relatives to be involved in the lives of children at home and at school. Another session of this program will be scheduled for the fall.
Save the Date! May Frolics
Mark your calendar and plan to attend this family friendly evening on Friday, May 3 from 5–8 p.m. $15 for unlimited games, activities, crafts, and must-see entertainment! Dinner, drinks and concessions will also be available for purchase. Pre-ordered wristbands and T-shirts are in the process of being filled, but you can always buy wristbands at May Frolics. We are still looking for volunteers. Contact Kristie Blanco at firstname.lastname@example.org or Clare Quadland at email@example.com.
Don’t miss the fun…
• Bake sale • Bounce house and inflatables • Brynn’s Frozen Yogurt • Captain Jim’s amazing magic and balloon creations
• Carpet golf and corn hole • Games2U mobile video game theater, booger
• Gem mining • Live DJ and dancing • MASH tent • Pie eating contests • Snow cones and cotton candy • Tug of war We can’t wait to see you!
wars, and giant hamster balls
frolic | 'fra-lik
verb to play and move about cheerfully, excitedly, or energetically; to run about happily noun a playful action or movement; an occasion or scene of fun
synonyms v. romp, play, sport, rejoice n. merriment, fun, lark, hilarity, party
Summit Summer offers a wide variety of enriching, challenging and fun day camps for three-year-olds to rising 9th graders. The program runs for six weeks this summer and includes more than seventy different options. Families may sign up for one week or as many as six. Early morning and late afternoon care are available. There is also a lunch service option. The teachers are excellent. The atmosphere is welcoming. The facilities are outstanding.
The classes are designed for personal attention with low student-teacher ratios and are open to the public. Learn more and register at http://www.summitschool.com/summer. Camp schedule for 2013: July 22–26 June 24–28 July 29–August 2 July 8–12 August 5–9 July 15–19