Jon's Weekly Update 12-18-14

posted Dec 19, 2014, 10:05 AM by Cynthia Friedman


Mon., 12/22–Mon.,1/5        Winter Break

Monday, 1/5                        NO SCHOOL – planning day

Tuesday, 1/6                        Classes Resume

Tuesday, 1/6, 6pm               RCO—Jon presents Middle School Program 2015-2016

Tuesday, 1/13, 3:15-4pm     Ukulele Performance Group Rehearsal (Mandatory)

Thursday, 1/15, 3:15-4pm   Ukulele Performance Group Rehearsal (Mandatory)

Tuesday, 1/20, 3:15-4pm     Ukulele Performance Group Rehearsal (Mandatory)

Thursday, 1/22, 3:15-4pm   Ukulele Performance Group Rehearsal (Mandatory)

Tuesday, 1/27                      Ukulele Performance! Sam Bonds

Saturday, 2/14                      Ukulele Performance! Asian Celebration


Dear Middle School Family,


We're going to miss your kids.  Carrie and I are so proud (and fond) of them.  We hope your time together is filled with Joy and Love and quality time.


Important Ukulele Update:

When we get back from Winter Break, we're going to hit the ground strumming.  We've booked two Ukulele Performance gigs in January and February.  The first is a Ridgeline fundraiser at Sam Bonds' new place over by the new Federal Building (the owners asked for TRUE to perform as part of the deal).  The second performance is with Iron Mango, a local ukulele orchestra, closely associated with the "Ukes for Kids" program that granted us the ukuleles in the first place.  We'll be playing two songs with them at the Asian Celebration on February 14.


We play ukes every day, and the students sound really good, for casual performance.  We've come so far so fast!  For the Performance Group, TRUE, that goes out into the community to perform on professional stages, I require attendance at the extra rehearsals after school.  It is absolutely necessary for us to refine and perfect a short, solid show.  (It just can't be done with 28 students--not all of them are interested in performing in the community.)


Participation in TRUE is completely optional. I don't get paid for these extra rehearsals.  I don't get paid for the performances.  I do, however, get a lot of joy from playing music with your kids. It's totally worth it.


In order to participate in the Sam Bonds Concert, your student  must commit to participate in at least 3 of the 4 rehearsals.  (All 4 would be preferable.)


As for all the other stuff we're learning:

We spend most of our energy before Winter Break, establishing the Norms of our community, and settling into the Middle School routines and expectations.  After Winter Break is when the real work and growth happens (in the context of the school year).  We have a lot of exciting field trips and learning opportunities planned for after Winter Break.  We're going to have a blast this year.


Already looking forward to having everyone back!

Jon and Carrie


P.S. On that first Tuesday back, January 6, from 6-7:30pm, I'll be presenting at the RCO meeting about the changes we have planned for the (growing!) middle school program next year.