Weekly Notes from the Head of Middle School, 11/15

Dear Middle School Families,

It was a tremendous turnout for our Veterans Day Assembly and I want to thank every family member in attendance that supported our speakers and musical performances. It is a very busy time of year and the time you commit to being a part of our Palm Valley community is greatly appreciated.

Congratulations to all of our finalists in the Middle School Poetry Recitation Competition, held yesterday in the MPR. Thank you to our judges, Mrs. Rice, Mr. Sarkis and Mr. Griffin and of course, Dr. Carr and Ms. Zachik for organizing such an event. Our English department grows stronger and stronger every year and it is due to the collaborative efforts, level of dedication, and support that our English teachers provide.

Additionally, faculty from our math and science departments hosted our first Middle School Math Game Night yesterday evening. Our families and students were presented with 24 different math games that challenged everyone’s thinking and provided a fun way to compete with others in creative math challenges. Thank you, Mrs. Farley, for setting up the games along with the descriptors. All of the games that were played can be purchased online so the fun and challenge can be practiced at home. Further thanks go to Mrs. Bernstein, Mr. Buck, Mr. Killeen, and Mr. Zuniga for their participation and supervision. Thank you, families, for your support.

It is a busy time of year, so here are some reminders moving forward:

7th Grade Service Learning Trip - FIND Food Bank
Our 7th Graders will be the first to kick off one of our yearly service learning activities. On November 30th at 8:30 AM to 11:30 AM, they will be returning to the FIND Food Bank. Students will depart from PVS at 8:30 AM and return by 11:30 AM. As part of this wonderful opportunity, students will take a tour of the facility, help other volunteers pack, separate and prepare items for delivery, and learn about all the good they bring to so many families across the valley. I would like to thank 7th Grade families in advance for your willingness to participate alongside the students and help transport our students to their location and back. Permission slips were sent home on Monday. Please complete the Adult Waiver Form and return it along with the students' permission slips if you wish to participate. Permission slips are due this Friday, November 17th.

Make High School Count
Please join Ms. Steinman, Head of Upper School and Mr. Hewitt, Director of College Counseling, for an informational night welcoming all 8th and 9th-grade families in the Coachella Valley. Learn about our College Counseling program, our Upper School curriculum, and how to make the most of your High School experience for a College-bound outcome. Thursday, November 30 at 6:00 pmin the Upper School.

Normans Uniform Sale
Normans will be selling uniforms in the Upper School lobby from 2:30 PM - 5:30 PM on Thursday, November 30th. Please come and stock up on dress uniform items and winter wear.

Jimmy John's Dinner Out Event
Be sure to visit Jimmy John's Palm Desert on Thursday, November 30th and present this flyer - 20% of your purchase will benefit PVS.

Support our Troops
This month Palm Valley School will be participating in a project to show our support and gratitude for the men and women serving in our armed services. Middle and Upper School students will be collecting, sorting, and packaging items for care packages.  All of these items will be collected and sent to Support Our Troops, for distribution during the holiday season. Each Middle School Student will be given a cardboard box. Students will be able to choose from seven different items they can bring to school. Items are listed below. At the end of the collection period, Friday, November 17, Middle School Students will bring their boxes to the Upper School, where they will be sorted into like items and packaged with drawings and letters provided from the Lower School Students. We have selected the seven most commonly asked for items. Students can choose from these seven types of items if they'd like to donate. We can also send non-branded gift cards, such as Visa/MasterCard or AMEX gift cards.

Here is the list of items (new, unopened items only):
1) Candy Bars, Snack Bars, Protein Bars
2) Wet Wipes - UNSCENTED
3) 1 GB + USB memory sticks & AA, AAA batteries
4) Disposable Razors, Q-Tips, Cotton balls/pads, Sanitary Napkins and Tampons
5) Cookies
6) Beef Jerky
7) Tins and Packets of Flavored Coffee

Please do not box items that do not fit into these categories. We are following the rules of the Armed Services and Support Our Troops, and will not forward items that are not on the list of items requested. Thank you for your support. We have two weeks to fill our boxes and show our gratitude! Thank you, Middle School!

Upper School Play
Parents, you are welcome to enjoy and support the Upper School drama production of The Crucible,  which will run from December 1-3 and 8-9. This play is rated PG-13 and contains material that is unsuitable for children under the age of 13. Please support our drama program by supporting this incredible play directed by Ken Sarkis. https://pvs.org/support-pvs/the-crucible/

Open House for Current Families
On December 4th at 6 PM, Palm Valley will be hosting an Open House for current families that are interested in touring and learning more about our Middle School campus and programs. Especially if you have a student that is about to go into 6th grade or 9th grade, we want to provide you an insider perspective from current students and teachers about what makes our Middle and Upper School programs so great. Hear all about our clubs, activities, athletics, trips, and academic requirements. We look forward to welcoming you here on the 4th of December.

Upcoming Dates:
11/15 - Fall Sports Banquet at 6:00 PM in the Gym
11/20 - 11/24 - Thanksgiving Break - No School
11/30 - FIND Food Bank visit for 7th Grade from 8:30 AM to 11:30 AM
11/30 - Making High School Count Night for 8th Grade at 6:00 PM in the US
12/4 -  Current Families Open House at 6 PM
12/20 - Whole School Ugly Sweater Day and Parade at 8:30 AM near the Gym
12/21 - LS Winter Sing at 9:00 AM in the Gym
12/22 - Student Half Day - Students are released at Noon
12/30 - Dinner Out Event at Jimmy John's Palm Desert. Present this flyer and 20% of your purchase will benefit PVS.

Mr. Brooks
Head of Middle School