Saturday, June 6, 2020

I Love a Parade!

Hi folks, Jon Wennstrom here! As we end the school year, we will be saying farewell to our students in a new way. I hope it will be a fun way! On Friday, June 12, all families are invited to come by the school in their cars as the Buchanan team waves goodbye to our students for the summer. With over 500 families, we ask that there is no stopping, but a continuous parade through the parking lot to wave goodbye for the summer. Families are asked to enter from the south (by 5 mile) and exit to the north (toward six mile). This will prevent any left turns and keep the parade flowing smoothly. The staff will take their places outside the building at noon. We hope to see you there!

STUDENT MATERIAL PICK UP SCHEDULE
The week of June 8, we will be offering a curb side pick up of student materials from desks and lockers. The teachers have been hard at work collecting student items and arranging them for pick up. At the designated time, parents will drive up to the school in front of the gym and staff members will bring out labeled bags with student belongings. The ONLY item we are collecting from families will be library or classroom books. Chromebooks and all other school items will be collected in the fall. Parents will not need to exit the vehicles and staff will be wearing protective gear. Please see the pick up schedule by grade level (Those with siblings may pick up for all children at their first pick up time).

Monday, June 8: First Grade 9:00-10:30  / Fourth Grade 10:30-12:00 
Tuesday, June 9: Kindergarten 12:00-1:30  / Second Grade 1:30-3:00 / Make Ups 4:00-5:30 
Wednesday, June 10: Third Grade 9:00-10:30 / Make Ups 10:30-12:00

PTA POINTS
  • Yearbook update! Yearbooks are printed, but we have not yet received a guaranteed ship date. Once we receive the yearbooks, we will coordinate their distribution.
  • Attention 4th grade families! There will be a special goodbye surprise from the PTA for all of our 4th graders at materials pick up. We hope to see you there!
  • Thank you to everyone who attended our final PTA meeting of the school year! At the meeting, we elected the following board for the 2020-2021 school year:
President: Valerie Jackson
1st Vice President: Jill Allevato
2nd Vice President: Mary Anne LaCaprara
Treasurer: Amy Owens
Recording Secretary: Marcie Wenzlick
Corresponding Secretary: Kira Crandall
  • The National PTA released the following statement on Racial Inequity and Injustice in America: PTA Statement


#BuchananBears


Did you know that STORY TIME is coming to an end? I've really enjoyed reading stories for our Buchanan students and I've been so grateful for all my special VIP guest readers. However, our students can still access more than 50 of our STORY TIME episodes on YouTube. If you want to watch episodes, just click on this link with your child: STORY TIME CHANNEL. I hope our students will continue to enjoy the episodes this summer and that they will all remember "Great things happen we we READ!" 


Sunday, May 31, 2020

More Questions than Answers

Hi folks, Jon Wennstrom here! With only a few more weeks of this school year, people are starting to look toward to the fall and what things will look like. The truth is, we have more questions than answers at this time. However, I do know that our district will look at every option, include many stakeholders, and keep the safety of children as our primary focus as decisions are made for the fall. Decisions will not be made hastily and will be shared out to the staff and our communities as they are made. My commitment and my advice is patience. That's not easy for me as I like to get things done and move quickly, but it's something I'm going to strive to demonstrate. Thanks for all your patience as well as we move forward together!


STUDENT MATERIAL PICK UP SCHEDULE
The week of June 8, we will be offering a curb side pick up of student materials from desks and lockers. The teachers have been hard at work collecting student items and arranging them for pick up. At the designated time, parents will drive up to the school in front of the gym and staff members will bring out labeled bags with student belongings. The ONLY item we are collecting from families will be library or classroom books. Chromebooks and all other school items will be collected in the fall. Parents will not need to exit the vehicles and staff will be wearing protective gear. Please see the pick up schedule by grade level (Those with siblings may pick up for all children at their first pick up time).

Monday, June 8: First Grade 9:00-10:30  / Fourth Grade 10:30-12:00 
Tuesday, June 9: Kindergarten 12:00-1:30  / Second Grade 1:30-3:00 
Wednesday, June 10: Third Grade 9:00-10:30 / Make Ups 10:30-12:00 

Wondering what books your child has checked out from the library? Click on the link below to watch a video by our Media Specialist, Ms. Ford to find out!

The Summer Reading Program at the Livonia Public Library is going virtual this year! This year's theme is "Imagine Your Story." Students will keep track of their reading and earn online badges. There will be opportunities to watch live-stream and recorded story times, magic shows, musical performances, and more! Everyone who completes the Summer Reading Program will earn a bookmark and a book. Registration is online only, and begins June 1. For more information, please go to this link: Summer Reading Program  

PTA POINTS
  • Please join us for our final PTA meeting of the year this Thursday, June 4 at 7:00 pm via Zoom (details below). At the meeting we will elect our 2020-2021 PTA board and vote on a proposed starting budget for the 2020-2021 school year (the meeting agenda and proposed budget are attached to Mr. Wennstrom's email for your review).
The current list of nominees for Buchanan's 2020-2021 PTA Board are:
President: Valerie Jackson
1st Vice President: Jill Allevato
2nd Vice President: Mary Anne LaCaprara
Treasurer: Amy Owens
Recording Secretary: Marcie Wenzlick
Corresponding Secretary: Kira Crandall and Katie Klann
  • Meeting Details:
Topic: PTA Membership Meeting
Time: Jun 4, 2020 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 833 9165 5874


#BuchananBears


Did you know that we did a virtual clap out for our Stevenson High School graduates who attended Buchanan Elementary? Please check out the video below created by Kellie Coogan. Great things are happening with our Buchanan students!  Link to Virtual Stevenson Clap Out

Sunday, May 17, 2020

One Storm, Many Boats

Hi folks, Jon Wennstrom here! Recently, I heard the saying, "We are not all in the same boat, but we are all in the same storm". I thought this was very descriptive of our current situation. We are all dealing with the impact of not being able to finish the school year in the building, but we all have our unique circumstances at home. Some are more adept at working with technology than others. Some are in a better financial situation than others. Some are dealing with health issues, while others may be healthy. Some have younger children navigating distance learning and others have seniors missing graduation. Knowing that everyone has a unique story, I continue to urge patience and kindness as we help and support one another through this situation. We may be in different boats, but we can all weather the storm together!


There will be no class meetings or assignments posted on Monday, May 25 in observance of Memorial Day 

PTA POINTS
  • A reminder to 4th grade families! The PTA would like to honor our 4th grade Buchanan Bears with a tribute video. Please email one photo of your child from kindergarten and one from 4th grade. Also, include your child’s full name. These photos will be compiled to make a video that will be posted on Buchanan’s School and PTA Facebook pages. Please email all photos to pta.buchanan1@gmail.com by May 29th.
  • Below is the slate of nominees running for each position for Buchanan's 2020-2021 PTA Board.
President: Valerie Jackson
1st Vice President: Jill Allevato
2nd Vice President: Mary Anne LaCaprara
Treasurer: Amy Owens
Recording Secretary: Marcie Wenzlick
Corresponding Secretary: Kira Crandall and Katie Klann
  • We plan to hold a Virtual PTA meeting on Thursday, June 4 (which is the original date for our final meeting of the year). During this meeting, we will vote in next year's board and vote to approve next year's starting budget. A Zoom invitation will be sent the week of the meeting.


#BuchananBears


Did you know the "Love and Logic" is offering free webinars for families and staff? I've found this program to be helpful both professionally and personally. This program by Jim Fay is designed to give choices to children, while still offering the structure that adults need to provide. Here is the link if you are interested in participating: Love & LogicGreat things are happening in our Buchanan community! 

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Special Delivery

Hi folks, Jon Wennstrom here! On Friday, our PTA wrapped up Teacher Appreciation Week by making home deliveries to all our Buchanan staff members. They drove for miles and miles to make sure that special care packages containing t-shirts, goody bags, and uplifting messages were delivered to each home and hand delivered if possible. I know that it made everyone on our team feel so special and appreciated. The gift bags may have contained some fun treats, but what the PTA was really delivering was love and it was felt by all. Thanks again PTA and all the families and students that shared positive messages with our staff this week. We miss you so much and will continue to stay connected even when we can't be together in person!


This is the time of year we begin to plan for the 2020-2021 school year.  If your family will NOT be returning to Buchanan Elementary in the fall, please contact Mrs. Pepple (ppepple@livoniapublicschools.org) as soon as possible. 
Please include your child’s name, the name of the school and the district where your child will be attending in the email. Thank you!
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Young 5's registration will open on Thursday, May 14 at 8:00 AM.  The registration information is on the district website and the Jackson website, and also in the link below:

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Buchanan would like to welcome our incoming Kindergarten families for the fall! A Welcome Letter will be sent out to all new families that have registered on Monday, May 11. The letter will share a timeline of events for our newest families. 

PTA POINTS
  • Thank you to everyone who participated in Staff Appreciation Week last week - by sharing something on social media, sending something directly to a staff member, or even just contributing to the PTA throughout the year. We were able to provide our wonderful staff with Amazon gift cards, a "Self-Care Syllabus," and hand-delivered care packages. We could not have done this without the financial support of our members and other Buchanan families throughout the year. We hope our staff knows how greatly they are appreciated!
  • Below is the slate of nominees running for each position for Buchanan's 2020-2021 PTA Board.
President: Valerie Jackson
1st Vice President: Jill Allevato
2nd Vice President: Mary Anne LaCaprara
Treasurer: Amy Owens
Recording Secretary: Marcie Wenzlick
Corresponding Secretary: Kira Crandall and Katie Klann
  • We plan to hold a Virtual PTA meeting on Thursday, June 4 (which is the original date for our final meeting of the year). During this meeting, we will vote in next year's board and vote to approve next year's starting budget. A Zoom invitation will be sent the week of the meeting.
  • Our online spirit wear store is still open! We may not be in the building the rest of this school year, but you can still represent Buchanan from home (and make sure you have spirit wear for next year!). Our spirit wear company offers FREE SHIPPING on orders over $50. Click this link to view our store: https://www.buchananspiritwear.com/


#BuchananBears


Did you know that our second grade Talking Zoo went digital this year? Not wanting to let our annual tradition of amazing animal reports and costumes be cancelled, our second grade team of teachers created a platform for our students to show off their presentations through video! I had the pleasure of watching them and was amazed at how much our students knew and how well they used technology. Just another example of how we are continuing our teaching and learning even when we can't be in the building. Great things are happening with our Buchanan students! 

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Teacher Appreciation

Hi folks, Jon Wennstrom here! Did you know that the first week of May is dedicated as "Teacher Appreciation Week"? Normally, we flood teachers with thank you letters, student made drawings, and the PTA treats our staff with lots of food and goodies! Unfortunately, this year we can't thank the teachers in person or give them cards and gifts. It takes a lot of teamwork to make the magic happen everyday at school from keeping the building clean, to feeding our students, to monitoring them on the playground and of course incredible work teachers do in the classroom as they inspire our children and teach them to be independent thinkers and creators! Now teachers are doing that incredible work in an online setting and working harder than ever to make sure every child feels connected and is learning. Let's make every effort to let our Buchanan team know that their work is appreciated and that THEY feel connected and supported. Whether it's a sign held up in a Zoom meeting, a picture posted on social media, or an email that says "Thank You", let's let them know that even though we are not in school, Teacher Appreciation doesn't stop. Below is my attempt to let the Buchanan staff know how much I love them and appreciate them! I will share the video on our Buchanan page tomorrow.

There will be another Chromebook pick up time at the Buchanan Office for families in need of a device on Thursday, May 7 from 12:00-1:00 PM. Due to limited numbers of devices, we can only give out one per family. If you are using a home device and it is working, please continue to do so. Thank you for your continued support! Also, here is a helpful link for parents & students about logging into Google Classrooms: Help with Google Classroom Video

PTA POINTS
  • It's Staff Appreciation Week! The PTA has plans to make sure our staff knows they are appreciated, but they would also love to hear from their students! Please join us in celebrating and acknowledging all of the hard work of our teachers and staff by flooding social media with photos of your students' homemade signs, sidewalk chalk messages, artwork, etc. dedicated to appreciating our staff. Post your photos to Facebook or Twitter with the hashtag #BuchananBears and/or tag a staff member, OR post your photo as a comment to the PTA Facebook Page's post about Staff Appreciation.
  • Below is the slate of nominees running for each position for Buchanan's 2020-2021 PTA Board.
President: Valerie Jackson
1st Vice President: Jill Allevato
2nd Vice President: Mary Anne LaCaprara
Treasurer: Amy Owens
Recording Secretary: Marcie Wenzlick
Corresponding Secretary: Kira Crandall and Katie Klann
  • We plan to hold a Virtual PTA meeting on Thursday, June 4 (which is the original date for our final meeting of the year). During this meeting, we will vote in next year's board and vote to approve next year's starting budget. A Zoom invitation will be sent the week of the meeting.
  • Our online spirit wear store is still open! We may not be in the building the rest of this school year, but you can still represent Buchanan from home (and make sure you have spirit wear for next year!). Our spirit wear company offers FREE SHIPPING on orders over $50. Click this link to view our store: https://www.buchananspiritwear.com/



#BuchananBears


Did you know that Buchanan has nearly 50 staff members that work with students every day? From custodial, kitchen, office, support, specials, and teaching staff, we have many layers of support and instruction for our Buchanan Bears. We may have different roles and even different schedules, but we all have the same goal...help each child be safe and successful while at school. I'm proud of our team and the work they do both in school and remotely. Great things are happening with our Buchanan Team! 

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Patience and Grace

Hi folks, Jon Wennstrom here! Recently, I was asked by a friend what advice they had for parents working with their children at home as they continued their studies through distance learning. My advice was to show patience and grace. Patience and grace for the children doing their best to learn in a new environment. Patience and grace for the teachers who are learning and creating new learning platforms each week as they plan and coordinate in a virtual setting. Patience and grace for YOURSELF as you juggle working from home, taking care of the needs of your family and work with the teachers in this new environment. Please keep in mind that everyone is doing the best they can (including you). There are many questions still to be answered, but one thing I know for sure. We will get through this....together! 



UPCOMING EVENTS FOR BUCHANAN STUDENTS
  • Week of April 27: Classroom Meetings (through Zoom or Google Meets), New Instruction begins for English Language Arts & Math. 
  • Thursday, April 30: Virtual Science Fair
  • CELEBRATE MONDAY videos post each Monday at 9:00 AM and STORY TIME videos post each weeknight at 7:00 PM on our Buchanan Facebook page! 
PTA POINTS

  • Below is the slate of nominees running for each position for Buchanan's 2020-2021 PTA Board. We will likely hold a PTA meeting via Zoom in May or early June, during which we will hold elections. We will keep you posted!
President: Valerie Jackson
1st Vice President: Jill Allevato
2nd Vice President: Mary Anne LaCaprara
Treasurer: Amy Owens
Recording Secretary: Marcie Wenzlick
Corresponding Secretary: Kira Crandall and Katie Klann
Check out this link to participate in our Virtual Science Fair! 




#BuchananBears

Did you know that last Wednesday was Secretary's Day? We are so fortunate to have such wonderful people in our front office. Thank you Mrs. Pepple and Mrs. Flack for all you do!! We sure miss you! Great things are happening in our Buchanan Community! 


Sunday, April 19, 2020

The Essentials

Hi folks, Jon Wennstrom here! I'm sure by now, you have received the email from Mrs. Oquist about our continuity of learning plan and how we are moving forward with distance learning. Part of that plan is teachers from across the district, working to establish the five essential concepts in English Language Arts and Mathematics to focus on for the remainder of the year. These will be taught in weekly lessons through a variety of virtual platforms for our students and provide opportunities for students to submit work and receive feedback from teachers. However, I think our district & school team have already been working on the essentials for the past month. Our district has continued providing necessary food distribution for families. We have supported the social/emotional needs of students through a 24 hour support line. At the building level, the Buchanan staff have been reaching out to families through email, social media, and even phone calls to make sure our students are feeling connected and supported. This will continue and even increase as each classroom hosts virtual class meetings each week and provides video lessons. I'm proud of Livonia Public Schools and the Buchanan Team for making sure that ALL of our students have "the essentials" they need!
  


UPCOMING EVENTS AT BUCHANAN

Week of April 20: All Classrooms will have at least one virtual Class Meeting 

Thursday, April 23: Families in need of a device may pick up a chromebook from the Buchanan Office from 12:00-1:00 PM

Week of April 27 and beyond: All Classrooms will have weekly virtual Class Meetings and posted lessons for ELA and Math as well as links to activities for PE, Art, Music, and Library

Thursday, April 30: Virtual Science Fair

PTA POINTS
  • Below is the slate of nominees running for each position for Buchanan's 2020-2021 PTA Board. We will likely hold a PTA meeting via Zoom in May or early June, during which we will hold elections. We will keep you posted!
President: Valerie Jackson
1st Vice President: Jill Allevato
2nd Vice President: Mary Anne LaCaprara
Treasurer: Amy Owens
Recording Secretary: Marcie Wenzlick
Corresponding Secretary: Kira Crandall and Katie Klann
Check out this link to participate in the Buchanan Virtual Science Fair!

Click HERE to visit our school web page & see all the links to family resources & weekly lessons!




#BuchananBears


Did you know that all classrooms will be hosting virtual class meetings every week? The meetings will be held using "Google Meets" or a secure "Zoom" session. Please remember that video conferencing should ONLY be initiated by the classroom teachers. Students should not start video conferences or invite others to join...this is the role of the teachers. Thank you for monitoring your child's online activities and for your support of distance learning. Great things are happening in our Buchanan community!