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The Bulldog Blast

August 12, 2019

In this Blast:
  • New! Principal Post
  • New Teacher Bios
  • School Supply Lists
  • Thank You from Ms. Welsh
  • Fun Run Thank You
  • Kindergarten Play Date
  • Fun Run Banner
  • Get Your Fun Run Messages!
  • Back to School Picnic
  • Ice Cream Fundraiser
  • Evening Out at Tuco & Blondie
  • Hygiene Product Donations
  • Box Tops Go Digital
  • J at School
  • CPS 2019-2020 Calendar
New! Principal Post

We hope that all students are continuing to enjoy a well-deserved summer vacation! Agassiz teachers and administration have been busily preparing for the start of the 2019-2020 school year. At this time, we would like to share some important updates:
World Language Program
After much research and consideration, we have decided to make some changes to our global context and world language classes. We are proud to be one of only 9 Chicago Public Schools that offers both the Primary Years Program (PYP) and Middle Years Program (MYP) of the International Baccalaureate (IB®) curriculum. This means all students in grades K-8 participate in inquiry-based, student-led, project-based learning that prepares them to be global citizens who create a more peaceful world. Global context coursework is an important part of the IB curriculum.
Global context teaches students age-appropriate lessons about who we are, where we are in space and time, how we express ourselves, how the world works, how we organize ourselves, and how we share the planet. For the last several years, we have taught global context as a standalone class. Based on teacher, administrative, student and parent feedback, we have decided that this course has not been meeting Agassiz standards of excellence. As a result, we are introducing a new approach to global context study as part of our IB curriculum.
We are beyond excited to announce that our beloved teacher, Ms. Taguchi, will start teaching Japanese to all students in grades K-5. Instead of a global context class, students in grades K-5 will study both Arabic and Japanese. By the end of the 2019-2020 school year, 5th grade students will have the opportunity to choose between Arabic or Japanese as their language elective once they enter middle school.
We are thrilled to be able to enhance our world language program to enable Agassiz students to gain exposure to multiple languages. We are also excited to give middle school students a choice of foreign language instruction (Arabic or Japanese). Finally, we are grateful to have someone of Ms. Taguchi’s caliber elevate world language instruction at Agassiz.
Here are just a few highlights of what students can expect from Japanese instruction this year:
  • Begin to learn the 4 skills of Japanese: Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking
  • Begin to learn about Japanese culture, traditions, holidays, folktales, geography, clothing, food, manners, and festivals
  • Create Japanese-style art
  • Watch first-hand videos of Japanese schools, homes, festivals, cities, and lifestyles
  • Sing Japanese songs
  • Create student-designed projects about Japan
A Note from Ms. Taguchi
I am so excited to share the rich culture and language of Japan!  Students will definitely embark on a new journey of discovery. They will explore a new world where culture, history, and language are deeply intertwined. I want students to embrace learning new languages so they can increase their global awareness and build a better world. I am hoping that students will see the world through a set of new eyes.  Remember, the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics is around the corner!

We hope you are as excited as we are to bring Japanese instruction to Agassiz this fall!

2018-2019 Fundraising Update
As we start the new year, we would like to thank the Friends of Agassiz, and our parent and donor community, for all their efforts and financial support during the 2018-2019 school year. Thanks to your hard work, we were able to allocate funds toward:
  • ChromeBooks to provide a 1:1 ratio for students in grades 4-8
  • Replacement of 17 broken teacher laptops for use in planning lessons and teaching student lessons that sync with classroom SmartBoards
  • materials for visual arts instruction
  • teacher professional development
  • savings for capital improvement projects
Your contributions enabled us to invest in the much-needed technology, arts, and teacher training we need to deliver high-quality instruction to our students.
Thank you for supporting our school. We could not be Agassiz without you!
Tuesday Folders
Please note that all updates communicated in the Blast will also be printed in Tuesday Folders once school resumes. This will help us ensure that all families have access to important school updates. Thank you!
New Teacher Bios

Please stay tuned for new teacher updates and short biographies. We are excited to introduce our newest teachers in the next Blast.
School Supply Lists

School supply lists for the 2019-2020 school year are now online. School supplies can be dropped off Thursday, August 29 from 1-3 PM and Friday, August 30 from 8-10 AM.
Thank You from Ms. Welsh

I want to thank everyone who donated towards the purchase of stools for the 7th and 8th grade science lab. We got this project funded before the start of the school year! I’m so excited for students to walk in on their first day to a new classroom, with bright and colorful stools. It’s going to be an exciting year! I am so lucky to have so many generous families and donors contribute to our class.
With gratitude, Ms. Welsh
Fun Run Thank You

Thank you to all the parents and businesses who are sponsoring our 13th Annual Fun Run in September. We have raised almost $4,000 so far! If you’re still interested in sponsoring the event and having your logo or business name listed on kid t-shirts, the Fun Run banner, and the school website, the deadline has been extended to Tuesday, August 13. 
Kindergarten Play Date

Agassiz will hold a summer play date on August 17 from 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM at Weisman Park (901 West Oakdale).  This is a great way for incoming kindergarten families to get to know each other prior to the start of the school year. New and current families are all welcome!
Fun Run Banner

As FOA continues to plan Agassiz’ September Fun Run, we invite all parents and community members who are service providers to advertise your business during this year’s Fun Run. For $100, you can list your name and the service you provide (e.g., “Joe Smith Pediatric Physical Therapy” or “Ana Carmen Event Photography”) in the large event banner displayed on school grounds during the Fun Run.

The banner will be displayed on school grounds from the day of the Fun Run on September 20 until the end of October.

This is a great opportunity for parents to spread the word to the school community about the unique service they provide! Please email by August 30 to sign up.
Get Your Fun Run Messages!

Agassiz students: Do you have a fun message for your classmates, classroom, or favorite teacher? Want to share what you like most about Agassiz with the school? Here’s your chance! This year, FOA will also print student messages in the Fun Run event banner.

Parents: You can also send a message of support to your children, their classmates, and teachers in their efforts to run as many laps as they can at the Fun Run event!

The cost is $25 for a 50-character message. The banner will be displayed on school grounds from the day of the Fun Run on September 20 until the end of October.  Messages will be accepted on a first come, first served basis.

Space is limited! Please email to participate.
Back to School Picnic

Please join FOA and the newly renamed Agassiz Building Community (ABC, formerly PTO) for our annual back-to-school picnic on school grounds on Sunday, August 25 from 11 AM to 1 PM. Kindergarten families are invited to come at 10 AM to get to know other school families. The picnic is also a great time to learn about FOA and ABC and see how you can get involved this coming school year!
Ice Cream Fundraiser

Spread the word! Tuco & Blondie, a Mexican restaurant on 3358 N. Southport Avenue, has generously offered to donate all sales of ice cream for the month of August to ABC (formerly PTO). Ice cream is free for kids and only $1 per adult! Please stop by and mention Agassiz when you visit.
Evening Out at Tuco & Blondie

Save the Date! Tuco & Blondie is donating 15% of all restaurant sales on Thursday, August 29th to Agassiz ABC (formerly PTO). Remember to mention Agassiz when you go. ABC invites all families to a back to school get together from 4 PM to 7 PM on August 29. Come out to say hi to old and new friends!
Hygiene Product Donations

As some of you may know, Illinois law mandates free feminine hygiene products in schools. These are often provided by teachers. As a way of supporting Agassiz middle school students and alleviating any financial burden to teachers, ABC (formerly PTO) is accepting donations of sanitary items (tampons and pads of various sizes). Donations can be dropped off at the Back to School picnic on August 25. Thank you for your support!
Box Tops Go Digital

The Box Tops for Education program donates 10 cents to your school for every Box Top clipped off of a General Mills product. The program has donated more than $913 million to schools since the program was founded in 1996. This year, Box Tops will go digital. Instead of clipping Box Top clips, parents can now use a mobile app to scan their store receipt. After the receipt is scanned, money will automatically be added to your school’s earnings online.

Here’s how it works: 1) Download the Box Tops app from Google Play or iTunes. 2) Create a username and connect it to Agassiz. 3) Scan your grocery store receipt within 14 days of purchase. 4) Items with the new Box Tops label will automatically be credited to Agassiz. Happy shopping!
J at School

J at School provides aftercare to Agassiz students on all weekdays between 2:45 PM and 6 PM. Students can enjoy a safe play to play and enjoy time with their school friends. J at School includes snack, arts and crafts, game time, indoor and outdoor play, and homework time. Parents can sign up for any combination of weekdays, or for last minute aftercare, using this link.

A variety of enrichment classes are available at an additional fee. The fall enrichment schedule will become available on August 20.
CPS 2019-2020 Calendar

The Chicago Public Schools 2019-2020 calendar can be found online here.

Who We Are

Agassiz School is a Chicago Public Schools (CPS) neighborhood and magnet cluster school with a fine and performing arts focus, providing high-quality elementary education to students from Kindergarten through eighth grade. Agassiz also offers half-day preschool for qualifying 3 and 4-year-olds.
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