Thank You LaSalle II PTO!

A huge thank you to our PTO for working tirelessly to raise funds for our school. Recently, the West Town Chamber of Commerce presented a check for $31,148.87 to our school as a result of our participation in summer festivals.

The West Town Chamber of Commerce was thrilled to be able to give back to the community. Proceeds from the Chamber’s 2016 special events generated over $52,000 in funds that the Chamber Board was able to donate to the following local schools and non-profits:

La Salle II PTO
Talcott Fine Arts and Museum Academy
Friends of Pritzker School
Erie Neighborhood House
The Arts of Life Inc.

The festivals are not only fun, they are economic development tools that draw thousands of consumers to the commercial corridors, they attract new business to West Town, and they have this direct positive impact on local non-profits and schools in the community. The Chamber, a local non-profit as well, also benefits from the special events and raises the bulk of the Chamber operating and member programming budgets from festival fundraising.

La Salle II and Pritzker organize the Family Fun Fest area at Do Division and also benefit 100% from activities in that area raising even more money for the school. Talcott organizes Kid Fest at West Fest and also benefits from 100% of the activities in the Kid Fest area for additional direct fundraising. The other non-profits provide volunteers and partner in some way with the Chamber to produce and license the events, and in exchange get a donation from festival proceeds.

Pumpkins in KDG

This fall the kindergarten classrooms learned about the five senses. Students explored their environment using their senses and learned how to describe things using different adjectives. One exploration the students participated in was a listening walk. Students walked and sat around in the outdoor classroom while they focused on using their sense of hearing. They recorded their observations of what sounds they heard. They also participated in a smelling exploration where they smelled the contents of different bags and guessed what was inside. Lastly, the kindergarteners used their senses to explore pumpkins and then described them.

Storyboards in 8th Grade

In our eighth literacy class, the students are currently reading To Kill A Mockingbird. The core of this narrative focuses on essential themes such as courage, race, discrimination, fairness, and justice. Through the readings and discussions, students are examining the heart of our democratic society. One in which strives to provide “equal rights for all” and “special privileges” for none. The narrative takes place in a small southern town in the early 1930s. Therefore, in social studies, students are also exploring the era of the Great Depression.

 

In eighth grade, students are using storyboards as a way to blend their creativity and analytical thinking skills to discuss this timeless masterpiece.  Storyboards are a powerful way for students to visually present and discuss information. In small groups, students created storyboards to help them keep track of the important events and characters in the novel..  By sharing and discussing their storyboards with their peers, students not only had an opportunity to verbalize thoughts but further synthesize their understanding of To Kill A Mockingbird.

 

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LaSalle II Students in China!

We currently have students abroad in Beijing, China. We can’t wait to hear all about their exciting travels!

LaSalle II Students in France!

Currently we have students in Angers, France. They are having a great time and we cannot wait to hear all the details when they return!

Perujazz Field Trip

LaSalle II is a World Language is the Magnet school, and an important piece to each student’s education is exposure to the cultures and communities that embrace the languages that they are learning. This helps our kids become better able to understand other people’s points of view, ways of life, and contributions to the world.

We are fortunate to live in a diverse city with exciting field trip opportunities. Recently our 4th and 5th grade Spanish students visited the Old Town School of Folk Music for a performance by Perujazz. The concert featured traditional Peruvian instruments such as the quena, zampona and bongos with contemporary tenor sax, electric bass and drums, just to name a few. You learn more about the band here: http://perujazz.com.

Money raised by the PTO funded the bus transportation that made this trip possible. Students studying other languages take similar trips throughout the year. We need your help to continue to provide cultural experiences like this. Please join the other 10 families who are using the monthly donation option as their way of contributing to the LaSalle II PTO Campaign for Excellence. A donation of $50 per month could provide 60 children exposure to a unique experience like this trip. Donations of any amount are appreciated.

Spain Exchange 2016

In September, some students in 7th and 8th grade traveled to Spain to LaSalle II  sister school for two weeks partnering up with Skinner North Elementary. Students stayed with host families in Madrid and attended school at IES Ramiro de Maeztu. Students were immersed in a Spanish-speaking environment most of the time and learned interdisciplinary content in the lessons they attended as well as all the learning trips students took in Madrid and around.
LaSalle II students had the chance to explore four different “Comunidades Autónomas” or the equivalent of a state here. They visited la Comunidad de Madrid, Castilla La Mancha, Castilla León, and Andalucía. Weekdays they attended classes, had school activities and educational and cultural visits, and in the evenings and weekends hosting families organized countless activities everyone enjoyed. It was hard to say goodbye to the host families as they truly became LaSalle II students’ families overseas. Students forged really strong relationships with their families in Spain that will last for a lifetime!

Keeping Recess Safe

Recess is very important for our kids. Obviously it is fun for them. It also helps them stay healthy, and it helps them learn throughout their day. Our teachers will tell you that kids stay more focused if they get exercise at recess.

Making recess run safely and smoothly is a challenge. On any given day our school needs to supervise more than 500 kids ranging from kindergarten to 8th grade, and recess times span 3 hours of the day. It takes five high energy people. Since budget cuts have eliminated funding for most support staff,  the school pays the JCC to staff this important job.

With this year’s budget cuts the school might not have been able to pay for recess playground supervision without cutting something else. Fortunately we have a great school community. Over the past year our PTO had saved enough money to help, and we had the money to cover the $25,000 it costs for recess supervision.

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Next year we will have a similar challenge, and we need your help. A donation of about $3 per day (less than a latte) or $100 per month would help cover almost two weeks of recess supervision. Please consider donating to the LaSalle II PTO Campaign for Excellence. Donation of any amount are appreciated.

 

 

 

Open Houses for Prospective Families

We will be hosting several Open Houses for prospective families who are interested in applying for admission for the 2016-2017 school-year.