Welcome back to school!
Teacher grants: Teacher’s Wishes Mini Grant application opened on Tuesday, Aug. 1. Share with Sonoma County PK-high school teachers that they can apply for up to $300 for their classrooms or a project. johnjordanfoundation.org
Drama fun: The fall program at Libby Oberlin’s Theater School begins in September. Her first show is “Dear Edwina” for ages 7-12 and the play “1984” for teens. She is also offering an eight-week musical theater class for teens on Tuesday nights. For more information, visit thetheaterschool.com.
Supply lists: A handful of local schools are signing on for a new service at TeacherLists.com. With a few clicks, parents can find their child’s exact supply list and then click over to pre-filled shopping carts on Target, Walmart, Jet.com or Amazon to purchase their list and have it shipped right to their home. Target and Walmart also offer in-store pick-up. So far, I see El Verano and St. Francis schools in Sonoma but others are likely to follow. More than 50,000 schools now have lists posted on TeacherLists. Lists for more than 1 million classrooms are live on the site and include required and requested items as well as specific notes and clarifications from teachers and school staff. Teacherlists.com.
Library event: On Saturday, Aug. 19, at 2 p.m. the Sonoma Valley Library presents Los Gu’achis. Los Gu’achis is a Petaluma-based quintet that plays instrumental music of the American Southwest, early California, and Mexico. The event is free and no registration is required. facebook.com/sonomavalleylibrary.
Supply costs: Speaking of school supplies, a new survey from Junior Achievement has found that most parents and teens agree that buying school supplies poses a financial challenge for families. Additionally, 78 percent of parents are buying school supplies from traditional “brick and mortar” stores, as opposed to online. In all, 64 percent of parents expect to pay less than $500 per child on back-to-school items (clothes and school supplies), while 72 percent of teens expect their parents or guardians to pay less than $500. Only 17 percent of parents and 16 percent of teens expect that more than $500 will be spent, per-child, for school supplies.
Farm Tots: Farm Tots at the Studdert Family Farm is expanding its program this fall and is currently enrolling children ages 2.5 to 6 years old. The pre-school program is Tuesdays-Fridays from 9 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. It’s a small program (12 children) and the teacher-child ratio is less than 6-1. Parents can choose one or multi-day options during the traditional school year (September-June). The program is led by preschool teacher Cindy Studdert, who is assisted by SVHS grad Noemi Campos (’08). “Farm Tots is committed to seasonal and creative learning - activities range from gathering eggs, planting seeds, feeding farm animals, art, play dough, swinging, hiking through the vineyards and looking for hawks... and always welcoming children’s discoveries,” says Studdert. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for a tour or visit farmtots.blogspot.com.
Shopping tip: If you need to stock up on back to school clothes or equipment, you can save 50 to 90 percent on everything for your family at NorCal’s largest kids’ and maternity consignment sales. The event at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds runs Thursday through Sunday, Sept. 14 to 19. Check website for details (northbay.jbfsale.com).