Spring 2018 Grant Period is OPEN

Attention staff of Junction Elementary School District: the JEF Spring 2018 Grant Period will be open beginning February 1!

We will offer $5,000 in grants during this period. Requests will be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis until the grant period ends or funds run out, whichever is sooner.

Please submit your additional grant requests using the form.

 

JEF Board Approves 2017-2018 Business Plan

The JEF Board of Directors approved the 2017-2018 Business Plan at Thursday’s board meeting. The plan outlines the organization’s goals, budget strategy, target Programs, and Communication Plan for the school year.

This year’s plan focuses on balancing fundraising targets with investment targets, and making large investments in three “Programs” that truly enrich the academic and extracurricular learning opportunities for the students at Junction. Those three programs are: Band, Robotics Club, and Junction After School Program.  The plan continues to provide large investments in grant making to the staff at Junction, and provides funding for important activities at school such as drug/bully prevention assemblies, accelerated reading recognition awards, and the spelling bee and math-a-thon, among other things.

As always, the JEF Board’s ability to fund these wonderful things hinges on the success of our fundraisers and grant writing. We appreciate our community’s continual support for us in these challenging fundraising endeavors.

The JEF 2017-2018 Business Plan is available for your review. If you have any questions or wish to make comments on the approved plan, we encourage you to attend a JEF Board Meeting, which take place the 1st Thursday each month at Junction Elementary School in Room 1.

2017-2018 Business Plan PDF

8th Grade Scholarships Coming Soon!

The JEF Board of Directors voted Thursday to open the 8th Grade Scholarship Application Period beginning on March 20, 2017! We have created a page dedicated to this important activity. 8th Graders and their parents are encouraged to stay closely tuned in for more information.

Kindergarten RoundUp!

It’s Kindergarten RoundUp time! So, this week JEF visited the Kindergarten and TK classrooms to explore some of the inspiring things Junction Elementary has to offer.

Dr. Seuss’ birthday makes for an exciting week in Kindergarten. In fact, all that fun really culminates on Friday – “Fun Friday”. On Fun Friday, the students break up into small groups and rotate through different activities led by teachers, aides, and parent volunteers.

Ms. Wood is the Kindergarten teacher. In between teaching the alphabet and numbers, what really shines in Ms. Wood’s classroom is her passion for teaching children lessons in kindness. You can visit her class web page here to learn more about her class, her impressive credentials, and see photos of her classroom in action.

On Friday, Ms. Wood was teaching her students how to finger paint a scene from “The Lorax”.

“Put your hand in the air and swiiiiirlll,” instructed Ms. Wood, “That’s what you’re going to do on the paper.”
Three young boys quietly whispered, “dot… lift… dot… lift” in unison, as they placed white dots on black tree trunks while simultaneously admiring each other’s work.

As I listened to Ms. Wood’s art instructions, I became distracted by the squeal of hot rod tricycle tires from the playground. I had to take a look for myself.

Three little boys fervently raced around the blacktop track during their group’s rotation to the playground.

When the race ended, I wandered next door to Mrs. Gifford’s Transitional Kindergarten (TK) classroom. The two classrooms are connected by an interior door. Each classroom has a sink, bathroom, and a sliding door to the large playground shared between Kinder, TK, and Preschool children.

Mrs. Gifford’s spark of excitement can light up a room. Check out her classroom web page here. Her role is to help children who are slightly too young for Kindergarten to begin their transition into a full day of learning with a little bit more flexibility.

After reading her group the Dr. Seuss story, Bartholomew and the Oobleck, Mrs. Gifford led them to a table of bowls filled with…Oobleck!

 

The kids couldn’t get enough of the slimy goo in the bowls. Mrs. Gifford explained to me, “It’s not even that hard to clean up!” … sure ?

Nearby at the cooking station, Mrs. Culp was helping the children prepare their own serving of “green eggs and ham,” which consisted of green pudding, a Nilla Wafer, and sprinkles.

A special treat at the cooking station this week.

Fun Friday is nothing short of brilliant.  From the Library, to music, to outdoor play, arts, crafts, and cooking, the children work hard all week to earn their participation in Fun Friday.

Aften bidding farewell to the Kindergarten and TK students, I found myself wandering about the school snapping photos.

Johnnie was mowing the lawn on his tractor and the fresh cut grass smell lingered in the air.  I could hear the school band practicing. The slightly older elementary children ran about their “big kid” playground. In the distance beyond the giant oak tree, I could spot a snow capped Mt. Burney far in the background, and in the other direction, Mt. Lassen.

Junction is really the best of two worlds: It has the small town country feel that brings a sense of unity and community to the campus and makes children feel at home. Yet at the same time, it has all the amenities of a suburban campus – extracurricular activities like sports and music, STEM clubs like Robotics, Book Club, Student Council, and the support of a community who, by the way, voted last June for a school bond that will bring Junction School, a long time community staple, to the same modern facility standards as newer schools in the area (construction starts this summer ?).

JEF encourages families to enroll your youngsters in Kindergarten (or TK, or Preschool for that matter) at Junction Elementary School in Palo Cedro, where they’re sure to experience years of magic in learning. Kindergarten Roundup goes through the month of March. Visit the front office for details, or contact JEF to chat about it.

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Highlights of the Junction Kindergarten Program:

Differentiated instruction at our Language Arts/Reading Stations

Music, Library, Computer Lab/Technology Programs are offered weekly.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) trained K and TK teachers

Hands-on Learning; Math manipulatives, Zoo Phonics

Kindergarten Electives once a week:

Fall – Around the World ~ Art, Games, Cooking, and Music

Winter-Spoken Word ~ Poetry, Readers Theater, Dance

Spring – STEM ~ Engineering, Physical and Chemical Science

Fun Friday Stations: Art, Cooking, Science, Library, Engineering, Outside Play

3-4 Field Trips

Snack Time Daily

Free Choice Time/Play in the afternoons promoting social and emotional development

Basic Daily Schedule

8:30-10:10 Language Arts/ Reading Stations

10:10-10:30 Snack and Recess

10:30-11:35 Math and PE Stations

11:35-12:15 Lunch/Recess

12:15-1:00 Calendar; Share; Read-Aloud; Math

1:00-1:30 Writing

1:30-2:15 Singing, Reading, Extra Work Time, Free Choice Time

Music, Electives, Computer Lab on certain days

Un-BEE-lievable Spellers!

It was a crisp Friday morning in February. Two rows of chairs lined the Junction School auditorium stage. The elementary students sat patiently, listening to instructions from Mr. McCoy, with their ankles crossed, or tip toes to the ground and knees wiggling.

Slowly, the audience began trickling in. Parents sat in front, sharing the nerves with their children. Mr. McCoy welcomed everyone, and introduced the three judges. One at a time, the contestants took the podium.

The announcer, in her gentle voice, spoke the spelling words. The children replied, “Can you use the word in a sentence, please?” “Would you please repeat the word?”

After a few rounds, the nerves lightened. “Kisses” spoke the announcer. The little blonde boy in a blue shirt smiled and his cheeks turned a slight hue of red before he replied, “Kisses. K-I-S-S-E-S. Kisses.” The students in the audience giggled. “Gangster,” spoke the announcer, and the children burst into laughter.

Little-by-little, the competition waned. Finally, the last three competitors remained. Excitement seized the room. The spelling words toughened. “Cheapskate.” “Eternity.” “Humorist.” A tense silence drew from the crowd as each letter was pronounced into the microphone, then “oooh!” and “awww!” filled the air when the judges held up their smiley faced cards – “Correct!”

The elementary school spelling bee winners who captivated us all with their brilliance, and dazzling stage character, were:

First Place: Rosa Miranda

Second Place: Landon Stark

Third Place: Matty Gouvea

I asked the students how they felt afterward. Landon told me, “At the end, I was getting nervous!” – a huge smile beamed upon his face. Matty told me the funniest word was “swagger”. Rosa said the experience was “nerve wracking!”

Following the elementary school event, the middle schoolers took the stage. Easily rattling off spelling words that stumped their parents in the audience, the students dazzled us with charm, suspense, excitement, and comedy. The middle school winners were:

First place: Andrew Shanks

Second place: Rebecca Wright

Third place: Kacey McGee

Please join us in proud congratulations to these fabulous students. The Elementary Student Council hosted the Spelling Bee.

Elementary School Photos!

Middle School Photos! 

 

Reflecting on the first half of the school year…

As we lay low for winter and plan for spring, we hope you’ll enjoy a brief reflection.

We started by thanking Voters for passing Measure A.

JEF endorsed Measure A, and thanks to our voters, it passed on the June 4 ballot. This school bond measure will provide needed safety and facility improvements at JESD.

We raised $8,800.00 with the Ducky Derby.

Junction families sold Ducky Derby Raffle tickets for a few weeks in September, smashing our records for this event by raising over $8,800.00. JEF expresses our most sincere appreciation to the Redding East Rotary Club for continuing to host this amazing fundraiser for the greater Redding community each year. Thank you to JESD Board member Heather Richards for Chairing this extraordinarily successful event.

We represented JESD at the Palo Cedro Honeybee Festival.

Our students (some dressed as adorable honey bees) sold doughnuts and cookies, earning $350, while raising awareness for JEF amongst the Palo Cedro Community.  We also welcomed many new volunteers, and piloted our use of SignUpGenius.com. Thank you to our sponsors for this event: Palo Cedro Holiday Market, and Roots and Shoots Nursery.

The Palo Cedro Lions Club sponsored Parent’s Night Out, and Elementary Student Council sponsored Kid’s Movie Night.

JEF hosted a fabulous night out for JESD families. The adults enjoyed great food  cooked up by the Lions Club, and entertainment by Three Mile Road (rock and roll!), with auctions, raffles and good company. Meanwhile, the children spent their evening watching movies and eating tacos with good friends at Junction Elementary. JEF owes a HUGE thank-you to Roger McCoy and the Elementary School Student Council. We would also like to thank our sponsors (listed below), and ALL of the wonderful families who participated in this exciting event, and successful fundraiser.

Our sponsors were: A&J Foods, Best Little Sandwich Shop (Palo Cedro), Breann Katsares at Pure Bliss Salon and Day Spa, Mason’s Pizza, all of the JEF board members and friends who made donations for the raffle and auction, the parents who donated baked goods for our dessert auction, and the parents who made donations for the classroom gift basket auctions. Thank you!

 

Fall Carnival was a BLAST, despite stormy weather keeping us indoors.

We sold the remaining classroom silent auction baskets, raising hundreds of dollars directly for the classrooms. We held pie eating, hula hoop, dancing, doughnut eating, mummy wrapping, and limbo contests. The 6th grade painted faces, the 7th grade prepared a spooky haunted house, and the 8th grade barbecued delicious food for lunch. The kids bounced their hearts out in the jumpy-house, decorated pumpkins, caught real-life goldfish, and won whole cake and cookie platters in the famous cake-walk.  What a bunch of excitement packed into a few hours!

We participated in the Palo Cedro Country Christmas Parade and Festival.

JEF helped the Junction after-school program host a booth at the event. We sold our new stickers, which you can purchase at the elementary school office, by the way!

It’s easy to see we’ve been busy this school year.

For now, we’re taking some down time while we improve the business side of things here at JEF. With mostly new Board Members driving the bus, we have some work to do to get organized before the spring – our next round of fabulous activities.

Thanks for reading, and as always, we encourage you to visit our Volunteer page if you would like to get involved.