February 11, 2014 | Issue No. 23


​In This Issue:
Important Upcoming Dates
February 13: PTA Meeting, 7:00 p.m.
February 14: Box Tops Contest Ends
February 14: Family Fun Valentine's Day Dance, 7:00 p.m.
February 17: School is Open; Make-Up for Jan. 2nd Snow Day
February 21: Colonial Day for 4th Graders

February 26: Transition to Middle School Mtg for Parents, 7:00 p.m.


Snow Make Up Day
The first snow makeup day will be on Monday, February 17th, and it will be scheduled as a full day for elementary schools. This full day will help to ensure elementary schools reach the annual 990 hours of instruction required by the state. 

This means that on Monday, February 17th, we will have school from 9:10 a.m. - 3:50 p.m.



PTA Meeting THIS Thursday
Please join us for this month's PTA meeting on Thursday, February 13th at 7:00 p.m. in the school library There is no better place to learn about upcoming PTA events and hear from our principal Ms. Fernandez about hot school topics.


Family Fun Dance THIS Friday
Love is in the air this week. Spend Friday evening, February 14th with the Mantua PTA for a Family Fun Valentine's Day Dance from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. in the school cafeteria. Put on your dancing shoes and come with your family and friends for a fun filled evening. Music will be provided by Everything Entertainment. You can dance to all the latest hits. Don't miss this event because you don't know how to dance. The Everything Entertainment DJ will teach everyone a few new dance moves. There is no cost to attend. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Contact Kathleen DeCarlo at kdecarlo@verizon.net with any questions.


Box Tops Contest Ends THIS Friday!
The Spring Box Tops Contest is coming to a close! Please send in your box tops through this Friday, February 14th. Our goal is to raise $1,500. Send in Box Tops and Labels for Education labels in a plastic zip bag with your teacher's name and grade on it. Labels should be dropped in the collection box by the front office. Please do not send in expired labels. A special prize will be awarded for the class bringing in the most labels.

The winning class will be announced early March. A list of participating products can be found on: www.boxtops4education.com and www.labelsforeducation.com. Ask your neighbors, co-workers, and local businesses to help you collect. Note that we collect BOTH Box Tops & Labels for Education! If you have any questions, please contact Sandy Spector at sandy.spector@gmail.com



Colonial Day is Coming!
Our 4th grade students will be experiencing some Colonial-era fun on Mantua's Colonial Day, Friday, February 21st. This all-day event is a fun and memorable day for our 4th graders. In order to allow our students to experience multiple activities, we need a lot of volunteers. If you'd like to help, please visit www.SignUpGenius.com/go/5080E45AEA9229-colonial. Please sign up as soon as possible so we know we have all areas covered by parent volunteers. And as always, thank you for your help!

In addition to helping on February 21st, here is another easy way to help. Do you have any used candles that you'd like to get rid of? We're collecting all unwanted and used candles for a Colonial Day project. There is a box in the front lobby if you'd like to contribute to the cause. Thank you!


Mantua Spring Fling is Coming!
Save the Date! The Mantua Elementary School Spring Fling will be held this year on Saturday, March 29th (with a rain date of Sunday, March 30th) from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This is a new twist on the old carnival with huge inflatables, carnival amusements, food vendors, games, a silent auction, the jewelry PLUS sale, and a marketplace! In addition, the Silent Auction will be held during the Spring Fling, featuring all of the teacher-donated items. There will be something for everyone! So come on out, bring the whole family, have a good time and support your elementary school at the same time. For information on being a part of this FUNdraising event, contact merifarling@hotmail.com


Raccoon Runners Program
The Mantua Raccoon Runners is a positive youth development program for girls in 3rd-6th grades. This program, sponsored by the Mantua PTA, will empower young girls to be true to themselves through lessons in positive body image, health and nutrition and social awareness. This will all be done while we strengthen ourselves through various fitness activities as we train for a 5k run. Any girl in grades 3-6 is eligible to participate.

 The Raccoon Runners is a six-week program that will meet before school Monday and Wednesday mornings from 8:00- 9:00 a.m. in the gym starting on Monday, March 10th. We will start our mornings with some sort of physical activity. Exercise will consist of a variety of activities from yoga to strength training and flexibility to 5k conditioning. After our workout and stretch, the girls will have a healthy snack while we cover our lesson for the day. There will be a new lesson each time we meet. Lessons will cover a variety of subjects including health and nutrition, safety, hygiene, emotions, team building, self-esteem, gratitude, social issues for girls and many others.

At the end of the program, the Raccoon Runners will participate in the Raccoon Run 5k on Saturday, May 10th. The permission slip can be found on the PTA website at http://mantuapta.org/documents/rrpermission.pdf.

 If you have any questions, please contact Meri Farling at merifarling@hotmail.com



FLEX Classes
FLEX classes are now open for registration! FLEX is a world language enrichment program sponsored by FCPS for elementary school children. All classes will run for 10 weeks and cost $159. Classes must have a minimum of 8 students, so sign up today before registration ends on February 21st! Please visit http://www.mantuapta.org/programs/flex.html to register or click on the links below. There may be multiple classes listed, **Be sure to select the class at Mantua Elementary**

Class                      Level                     Day / Time                          Start Date            Grades
Chinese                1                              Thurs 4-5pm                       March 13th           K-3
Chinese                3*                           Fri 4-5pm                             March 14th           1-6
Spanish                1                              Fri 8-9am                             March 21st           1-6
 

*This course is for native speakers or children who have completed a Level 2 FLEX Chinese course.
 
Please contact Jennifer Rade at radejk@gmail.com with any questions.



Congratulations MATHCOUNTS Mantua!

Mantua Elementary's sixth graders were represented in the Northern Virginia Regional MATHCOUNTS competition on February 1st by the following selected students: Samhitha Reddy, Ben Kang, Zhiyao Zhang, Pratistha Timilsina, Daniel Lee, Victoria Puck-Karam, Tasia Ahmasi, and Abena Asiamah. While the full results won't be available for a few weeks, a big congratulations to Ben Kang for placing 10th in the Fairfax Chapter, out of more than 200 students!

Thank you to Paul Malc for sponsoring the program, to Eli Lifland and Abhishek Bhargava for coaching the team, to Ken Lifland for chaperoning the meetings and competition, and to the kids and their parents for participating and supporting the team.




Yearbook: Candid Photos Wanted
The Yearbook Committee still needs more pictures from all the classrooms. If you can, please take photos during upcoming Valentine's Day parties and email them to mantuayearbooks@gmail.com. You can still order yearbooks. The price of the yearbook is $30.


Support for Parents in Special Education (SPISE)!
Our next meeting will be held on Monday, February 17th at 8:00 p.m. at Lisa Libby's home.

This is a group started by parents, for parents. Do you have a child with special needs and are overwhelmed by the day-to-day demands of being a parent? Do you want support and information from parents that have been through the special education screening and IEP process? Do you constantly research better diagnoses, therapies, and learning programs for your child? Do you want to be able to vent your frustrations and share your victories with people who understand and share your struggles? If any of these are true, this is definitely the group for you. 

If you would like to join us, please contact me, Lisa Libby, at Lisa.A.Libby@gmail.com



Frost Family Bingo Night
Save the Date for Frost Bingo: Friday, February 21st! Pizza and drinks starting at 6:30 p.m., BINGO starts at 7:00 p.m. Come play for fun and prizes including $100 grand prize, gift cards,movie passes and more! This is Frost PTA's biggest fundraiser of the year so be ready to call BINGO! Questions? Email Miriam Smolen at miriam.smolen@gmail.com. Bingo Order form is on the Frost PTA website. You can pre-order your BINGO tickets and pizza!


First Annual Regional Science Fair for Elementary Students 
Northern Virginia's First Annual Regional Science Fair for Elementary and Middle Schools will take place at George Mason University on Saturday, April 5th. Mantua has signed up to participate. Participation is open to students in grades 1-6, but the number of children who can be sent to the fair from each school is limited. In the likely event that the number of Mantua students who want to participate exceeds our quota, Mantua will hold its own judged science fair the week of March 10th to select the children who are sent on to the Regional Fair.
 
To find out more about these events, please read the information sheet, then sign up your child here if he/she is interested in participating. If you have any questions, please e-mail mantuasciencefair@gmail.com.



Special Education Conference
The 9th Annual Special Education Conference: Parents + Educators + Students = Success will be held on Saturday, March 1st at Woodson High School from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The keynote presentation will be delivered by Ellen Galinsky, early childhood expert, president of Families and Work Institute and author of Mind in the Making. Ellen’s focus is on promoting life skills, based on Executive Functions of the brain. FCPS staff and guest speakers Ann Dolin, Cathi Cohen, Kirk Martin, Dr. David Black, Dr. Samantha Hollins, Joyce Sharp and Dr. Joyce Cooper-Kahn will also present a variety of workshops for families and educators of students who receive special education services in Fairfax County Public Schools.

Parents can register online http://www.fcps.edu/dss/conference/ or by phone at 703-204-3941. 

• List of Conference workshops http://www.fcps.edu/dss/conference/2014/workshops.pdf
• Download the conference flier http://www.fcps.edu/dss/conference/2014/flier/ConferenceFlyer.pdf
Learn more about Ellen Galinsky http://www.mindinthemaking.org/meet_ellen_galinsky/.
Questions? Contact the Parent Resource Center at 703-204-3941.



FCAG Summer Enrichment Camp Fair 
FCAG's annual Summer Enrichment Camp Fair will take place on Wednesday, February 12th, 7:30-9:00 p.m. in the Oakton High School Cafeteria. Representatives from a variety of summer camps will be on hand to discuss their offerings with families looking for activities for their children. This event is free and open to the public.
                                                          
Costa Rica Trip with Ms. Warner
Do you want to be a part of an amazing experience this summer? Do you want to explore what makes our earth so special? If so, come join Ms. Warner on a Costa Rican adventure! There will be an interest meeting on 
Tuesday, February 25th at 7:00 p.m. in the school library.
 
This summer, Ms. Warner will be leader of the fabulous Costa Rica Trip sponsored by Earth Explore, and she’s inviting all rising 5th, 6th, and 7th graders to join her! Earth Explore is a national program designed to offer 5th - 8th grade students the opportunity to explore their world through travel and hands-on discovery. This amazing trip is currently priced at $2,395 – which includes all meals, all lodging, all ground transportation, and all educational lessons/activities/guides (airfare cost TBD).
 
The group will leave in late June for travel to Costa Rica. Throughout the trip, students will have the opportunity to see rich landscape and wildlife of this country. You will explore Tortuguero National Park, raft the Rio Pejivalle River, watch a sea turtle lay eggs, visit a local school, go down a zip line in the jungle, hike in the Monteverde Cloud Forest, go on a horseback ride, and climb to a forest Sky Walk in the Santa Elena Cloud Forest. During many of these activities, you will view various wildlife species such as sloths, toucans, ocelot, and iguanas.
 
Please note that Ms. Warner is not doing this as a 4th grade teacher from Mantua but as someone who loves learning, enjoys being outdoors, and wants to have an adventure. This event is not sponsored by Fairfax County Public Schools or Mantua Elementary School. This is solely Ms. Warner working with Earth Explore to offer an incredible opportunity to students.
 
Please take some time to read the information from Earth Explore, visit their website (www.earthexplore.com), and consider this fantastic opportunity. If you want to hear more about the trip before (or after!) signing up, there will be an information session for anyone interested on Tuesday, February 25th at 7:00 p.m. in the school library. If possible, please contact Ms. Warner to let her know if you will attend! You can email Ms. Warner at costaricajune2014@gmail.com. She would appreciate hearing from all of you – interested, thinking, or not interested – so she can get an idea of numbers of students who may join her for this 7-day Costa Rican adventure!



Translators
Translators comprise another vital part of our outreach efforts. We want every Mantua ES family to feel included and connected—should families need to have a document translated into their native language, our volunteers are here to help!

  • للحصول على نسخة مترجمة للغة العربية، نرجو الإتصال بالأخت بدرية كفالة على هذا الإيميل: bkafala@gmail.com. If you need to have a document translated into Arabic, please emailbkafala@gmail.com.
  • 如果你需要把文件翻译成中文,请联系冯敏。她的电子邮件是mmfeng@hotmail.com。If you need to have a document translated into Chinese, please emailMin Feng.
  • Если вам необходимо перевести документ на русский язык, пожалуйста обращайтесь к Анне Жердецкой или Виктору Жердецкому по электронной почте: hannaz74@gmail.com или ViktarZ@gmail.com. If you need to have a document translated into Russian, please contact Hanna Zhardzetskaya and Viktar Zhardzetski.
  • Para obtener una copia en Espanol favor de contactar a Ana Castelan. If you need to have a document translated into Spanish, please email Ana Castelan.
  • We are still looking for Korean and Vietnamese translators for 2013-14.

Email Shoshi Kalderon at shoshi.kalderon@yahoo.com if you have any questions about or would like to volunteer as an ambassador or translator with Mantua ES’s Community Building Network.

Mantua Elementary School PTA
9107 Horner Court | Fairfax, Virginia 22031
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