Dear Columbine Parents and Families,
I wanted to share how thankful we are for each one of you, our amazing PTA, and the many hours that you volunteer to make our school a thriving learning community. Our focus from now until December is on taking a minute to reflect on what we are grateful for. Research shows that gratitude opens the doors to more relationships, improves physical and psychological health, enhances empathy and reduces aggression, helps us sleep better, improves self-esteem, and increases mental strength. With so much going on in the world, we invite you to share your own views with your dear children around this important value during Thanksgiving and in the months to come.
We hope that your Thanksgiving is filled with the love of family and friends!
Impact on Education finds a Secret Donor for 5th grade Pathways to Careers
Yesterday Impact on Education Surprised the 5th graders when Chip and the CU Cheerleaders, on behalf of the CU Football Foundation presented our teachers with $10,000 worth of checks so that we can fund another round of our Columbine Pathways to Careers. These funds will allow our 5th graders to leave with a chance to contextualize their learnings as it relates to a career path that matches their interest. Last year, most of our 5th graders stayed for this optional enrichment that allowed them to, depending on the pathway chosen, leave with experience translating, leadership and peer mediation, bicycle building and repair, nutrition and hospitality, agriculture, graphic design, energy conservation, health sciences. This year our hope is to tap into our parents’ expertise as a resource to further improve this valuable experience for our students. We will have more information to share soon.
Thanks to PTA from Enes, our Head Custodian
Enes is one happy Head Custodian! Our PTA gifted our school with a very expensive floor scrubber that will allow him to work faster and more efficiently. Looking at his face when he was explaining how much this will help him, you would think that he just received a brand new Corvette. Thanks PTA!
News from Spanish as a World Language (SWL)
Students from all grades our now working on Unit 3. The SWL team is working hard and continues to make sure to identify and integrate linguistic “transferences,” from first to second language, with students from all grade levels.
As a first transference experience for all grade levels (1-5), SWL students learned all about Día de los Muertos. Through the use of different strategies, all students acquired vocabulary and understanding of this celebration. This celebration offered itself as a great theme and opportunity for transferring vocabulary and cultural competency, while including arts and crafts to the classroom and student experience. The art angle of this effort was facilitated by a Latina parent, Ms. Gabriela Padilla.
As a result, to this connection and linguistic transfer, all students now master from 5 to 20 new words (depending on the grade level) that are directly connected to the celebration and made their Día de los Muertos altar that was displayed on the second floor. All students can now talk about it in Spanish while having developed understanding of this celebration.
SWL will continue to integrate “transferring” techniques and topics being covered by their classroom teachers and relevant to the students’ life!
Letter from a former Columbine Student- I received permission to share this letter written from August King
I have lived my whole life in Boulder, Colorado, a predominantly Caucasian and relatively affluent town. Despite this, the elementary school I attended between 2nd and 5th grade, Columbine Elementary, was 85% Latino. My first year at the school was the strangest for me, as I had to adjust to not only being surrounded by people of a different culture from mine, but for the most part people of a different socioeconomic status. I learned quickly enough though, and the rest of my years at Columbine were much more comfortable. I had been learning Spanish since kindergarten, and I continued learning it through elementary school and beyond. This Spanish education made it even easier to fit in at Columbine, and I regularly spoke Spanglish with my Latino peers. The majority of my friends who I saw outside of school were white like me but this did not make them any more or less close to me than my Latino friends at school. I made friendships at Columbine that I still have today, friendships that exposed me to a whole new world of culture. I went to Latino birthday parties, ate true Mexican food, and played loads of soccer during recess. I spoke Spanish that surprised children my age when I traveled to Mexico, and understood at a very young age the process of unspoken segregation caused by catchment area boundaries that had caused Columbine to be so heavily Latino. I learned what privilege was, and instead of finding it weird how diverse my school was, I found it weird that other Elementary schools were so white. I experienced first-hand how happy people can be with much less money than the majority of Boulder’s citizens. Not only did attending Columbine teach me about Latino culture, but it made me much more adept at absorbing and appreciating all cultures. This appreciation helped me when my family traveled to Spain for two months, when we had a Norwegian exchange student stay at our house, when I visited Jamaica, and even helps me now when I interact with my family’s close British friends. It makes me much more open to new ideas and new customs, which are some of the most intriguing things in the world to me. I consider myself proficient in Spanish and Latino culture, and I have learned to love to travel and learn about others. In all, I think my experience at Columbine made me a much more versatile and compassionate person. It has caused me to want to travel and learn about as many cultures as I can during my life.
Message from Stan Garnett, District Attorney
Many of us in the law enforcement community, and in other Boulder County Agencies, have had residents contact us about fear of deportation, hate crimes, harassment, health care accessibility and other issues due to the tenor of recent political debate in the United States. This office’s Immigrant Protection Initiative (part of our Community Protection Division) first established in 2011, assures the protection under Colorado law of everyone in Boulder County, regardless of language spoken, immigration status, ethnic heritage, religious belief, LGBTQ identification or any other personal characteristic. Every human being in our county is protected by Colorado law. Over the last several years we have handled many cases, some through jury trial, as part of this Initiative. To remind everyone of the commitment of my office to these issues and to answer questions and explain procedures for reporting a crime, we will be hosting a Community Meeting on Tues., November 29, 5:30-7:00 pm, DIAGONAL COURT, 3265 30th St., Boulder (and other meetings later, in different places). The meeting will be in both English and Spanish and representatives from other Boulder County Agencies will be present to underscore Boulder County’s commitment to fair treatment of everyone.