Adams Update 1/2/18 Welcome to 2018!

It’s a New Year @ Adams!
Dear Adams Families,
Welcome back and Happy New Year!
I hope this update finds you well and you have had some special time with family and friends over the last two weeks. I imagine that many of you are ready to send the kids back to school! Classes will resume on Wednesday this week and it will be an early dismissal, as usual, at 1:45. Thanks in advance for helping them to dress for the weather, as we will be planning for outdoor recess.
Below are a few links I found interesting related to parenting. If you’re like me, you feel that raising kids is the most challenging job any of us have ever taken on. I am always looking for tips, ideas and feedback on how to be be a better parent. I’ll occasionally add an interesting piece here. If there is something specific you are looking for, please let me know.
Please read on below for news you can use about school choice, winter weather, 4J news and more. If you’d like to get these updates as texts, text FOLLOW ADAMSALLIGATOR to 40404.
Let’s have an amazing 2018!
Principal Kevin
Parenting Resolutions for 2018
Encouraging Gratitude
Easier Healthy Eating

6 Media Resolutions Every Family Should Make in 2018

Whether or not you’re a “resolution person,” approach the new year as an opportunity to bond, to be mindful, and to learn something new. By Caroline Knorr 12/21/2017 – Source:… Topics: Healthy Media Habits, Screen Time, Technology Addiction 📷
If there’s one thing nearly every parent wants to get better at, it’s staying ahead of their kids when it comes to media and technology. From crazy YouTube videos to marathon Minecraft sessions to sexy selfies, kids are constantly testing the limits (and our patience) with new stuff they want to download, watch, and play. Even as we encourage our kids to use their devices for good (homework, making things, learning stuff), we still butt heads over safety, screen time, age-appropriate content, and the importance of making eye contact instead of staring at your screen when a human being is talking to you.
Well, 2018 can be the year you do things differently. Learning to live in harmony with media and tech — in a way that works for your family — is one of the most forward-thinking actions you can take as a parent raising kids in the digital age. Who knows? One of these may be the start of a new family tradition.
  • Commit to learning about one media item your kid is passionate about. If your mind tends to wander when your kid explains every detail of her latest Minecraft mod, catch yourself and tune back in. Whether it’s the latest YouTuber, a new app, a game, or a dank meme, it matters in their world. It’s a good sign if they’re sharing it with you because it means that they care about what you think. If you know a little something about the stuff your kid is into, it can spark conversations, lead to new media choices, and make it easier to manage (but you don’t need to tell your kid that).
  • Deal with the one thing that’s most frustrating about your kid’s media/tech. What didn’t work in 2017? Do you need better rules or limits? Do you need to make a space for charging phones outside the bedroom at night? Do you need to stop watching TV before school? Do you need your kid to be better about responding to your texts? Check out the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Family Media Use Plan worksheets to identify problem areas and solve them. Make a New Year’s resolution to fix a nagging issue that’s causing friction between you and your kid.
  • Lead by example by putting down your phone at a certain time every evening. Make an announcement when you shut down your devices. Your kids may roll their eyes, but it sends a strong message that you can set boundaries — and stick to them.
  • Put a new spin on the device-free dinner. If you’re already designating a night or nights as device-free, give yourself a pat on the back. How about taking it a step further and doing something that inspires closeness and conversation with kids? Some ideas: Pick a word of the day, play “two truths and a lie,” or talk about what you’d do if you won the lottery. Leave school, work, and chores to discuss after dinner.
  • Start a book club (with your kids). It’s so important to keep your kids reading. Strong readers do well in all school subjects. They also learn to focus for extended periods, a necessary skill in the world of bite-sized information. And reading together gives you a chance to discuss plot, characters, and themes that can apply to all aspects of life. There’s no shortage of book recommendations. You can get into a book series, whether you have little kids, tweens, or teens. Or you can introduce your kids to the great classics of English literature. Focus on one topic — for example, “What did you like best about the book?” Then use the conversation starters from our book reviews or look for discussion guides in the back of the book or online.


A Retirement and Appreciations

As many of you know, our beloved secretary, Cheryl Lindsey has been out on leave off and on for over a year taking care of some health matters. She is well and has announced her retirement, effective January 1. Please join me in wishing her well as she makes this transition. Cheryl has been at Adams for many years and been a positive force in the lives of countless kids and families.
While Cheryl has been out, Cris Specht, a retired 4j secretary has been keeping things running smoothly in the front office and the amazing Sharon Reel has picked up extra duties as well. Randy Bonney, head custodian, and Launa Hale in the cafeteria are also instrumental in providing support to our staff and students in immeasurable ways.
Adams PTA has gone to great lengths to support students by supporting Meet the Masters, classroom projects, field trips as well as shoving our teachers and educational assistants how much they are appreciated with special treats and recognition throughout the year.
We have recently used funds raised by the fall Jog-a-thon to pay for headphones, field trip transportation, part of 5th grade outdoor school, playground equipment and new projectors for several classrooms. Please know that when you support any Adams fundraiser, you help to enrich the school experience of ALL students at Adams and every dollar counts.
Our food drive and weekly food backpack program, food for thought, are generously supported through donations from Adams families and community members. We are able to help our kids be fed and ready to learn when they arrive at school because of these programs. Our community is pretty awesome!
Lastly, our Wild West Book Fair was a tremendous success thanks to the volunteers who lead that effort. We raised $2000 more than last year and will use those funds to pay for Scholastic News subscriptions for all Adams students and add to the library collection.

Calendar Updates

1/2/18 NO SCHOOL – Building and District Professional Development
1/3/18 – Classes Resume – Early Release at 1:45
1/11/18 – School Choice Tour @ 5:00 PM
1/11/18 Adams PTA Meeting @ 6:00 PM in the Library – Childcare provided
1/15/18 NO SCHOOL – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Observed

Winter s Coming: Snow Day Decisions and Notifications

Plan ahead, sign up now for school closure alert texts
When winter weather arrives, schools may be closed or delayed or buses may use snow routes. These decisions are made districtwide and are the same for every 4J school.
How the decision is made:
Typically, weather-related school schedule decisions are made in the early morning, before school, when current weather conditions can be assessed. We believe students and families are best served when we are open. Our main concern and the reason for any school closure is the safety of our students and staff.
How to find out if there is a change:
If the district decides to make a change to the school schedule or bus routes, it is communicated as quickly as possible in several ways, all well before 6:30 a.m. If schools and buses are on their regular schedule, there will NOT be an announcement.
  • Sign up for text-message alerts via Twitter @4Jweather — text FOLLOW 4JWEATHER to 40404
  • Like Eugene School District 4J on our Facebook page,
  • Check the 4J website,
  • Tune in to local news media
What does the announcement mean?
School Closure: There is no school for students, although some staff will be at work. The district will make a decision by noon about whether any after-school student activities or community use of buildings may take place.
Two-Hour Delay: School will start two hours late and end at the normal dismissal time for a regular school day, which is 2:45. This will be the schedule EVEN IF IT IS A WEDNESDAY. Buses will drive cautiously, adjusting to conditions, so pickup and return may be delayed.
Snow Routes: Some school bus routes have alternate “snow routes” that may be used when snow and ice make road conditions hazardous at higher and steeper elevations. This helps limit the need for school closures in harsh weather. When school buses operate on these snow routes, some students will have a different bus stop location and time than on the regular route.
Parent Choice: When school is in session during wintry weather, families are encouraged to consider the road conditions in their areas, make their own decisions based on safety, and notify the school if their student will be staying home. Parents’ decisions about student absences for hazardous weather safety reasons will be honored.
For more information, please see

School Choice Season is Coming

Earlier deadline: Visit schools and apply Jan. 1–31
The school choice period for the 2018–19 school year is coming soon: January 2018.
In Eugene School District 4J, every 4J school offers students excellent educational opportunities. Students may enroll in their neighborhood school at any time, or request to enroll in a different 4J school if space is available. School choice requests are accepted in an order determined by lottery.
To be included in the annual school choice lottery, 4J residents must apply between January 1 and January 31, by midnight. This deadline is earlier than in past years. Non-district residents apply later, between March 1 and April 1.
Families are invited to explore their school choice options, including their neighborhood school, during the January school choice period. All 4J schools will hold tours and other opportunities to visit in January. The district will hold an Elementary School Showcase with all elementary schools on Saturday, Jan. 6.
Elementary School Showcase Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018, 10 a.m.–12 p.m. 4J Education Center, 200 N. Monroe St., Eugene
  • One-stop school choice information fair!
  • Learn about the school choice process
  • Talk to representatives from every 4J school
  • Spanish interpretation provided
School Choice Information Meetings Saturday, Jan. 6, 10 a.m.–12 p.m. (during the Elementary School Showcase) Tuesday, Jan. 16, 7 p.m. 4J Education Center, 200 North Monroe St.
  • Get answers about the school choice process
  • Spanish interpretation provided
School Tours and Events January 2018

Superintendent Balderas speaks on students’ behavioral needs

“For these are all our children. We will all profit by, or pay for, whatever they become.” –James Baldwin
The Eugene Register-Guard recently published several articles detailing concerns about an upsurge of behavioral issues at an elementary school in Eugene. This has brought attention to an important issue: the rising incidence and intensity of significant behavior issues, not just at one school, but in schools across our community and across the country.
As educators and community members, we must all come together to help every student succeed.
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