ABS Thursday Notes- October 13, 2022

Published for the Arts Based School Community

October 13, 2022

How We Do it and Why

-Mary Siebert

“The American tapestry is vibrant, bold, and varied, like the people who call America home.” - ABS 2nd Grade Team

Who are Americans? Americans are still learning the answer to that question. One thing we know for sure is that the answer is complicated. If we think of our country as a tapestry, we discover this: the threads that are woven into the tapestry come from all over the world. We think of country music, of hip hop, of our favorite foods like tacos, pizza, and hamburgers, of stories from The Three Little Pigs to Star Wars, and all of these things are American—but all of them spring from other cultures. If we could grab any one of the threads in our American tapestry and follow it back into history, it would lead far, far back, on our continent, and in almost every other continent of the world. The best tool to bring with you to study American culture is: curiosity. 

North Carolina introduced new standards for social studies, to begin this year. At 2nd grade, the changes are particularly pronounced. The new course is called “America: Our Nation.” Students are expected to learn how the United States developed over time. Included in these standards is an expectation that students learn of “contributions of various women, indigenous, religious, racial, and other minority groups that have impacted American history.” 

The team worked together to consider how the arts specialists might contribute to the new goals, and we determined that we could explore four varied American cultures via four different art forms. The students have prepared demonstrations about what they learned in each of music, art, drama, and dance: 

Music that follows from Irish immigrants to influences of jazz. The students perform four songs; two of them accompanied by their own strumming on ukuleles.

Artwork inspired by vivid folk traditions from Mexico, including textile art, painting, and clay sculpture.

Dramatization of a story that comes from the Snohomish tribe of our Pacific Northwest.

Dances that connect the traditional dances from the African continent through the Lindy Hop of the 1930s, to Hip Hop.


Whenever we create an entirely new production, the teachers are anxious about its completion and reception. Even though the main point of our project development is for students to engage in the material through the PROCESS, rather than focusing on the PRODUCT, we have high standards and we desire a polished presentation. Yesterday’s premiere with Mrs. Warren’s class received great cheers from an enthusiastic audience of parents and siblings, and 100% of the students participated 100% of the time. That’s a great result. The applause is the cherry on top. Whew!

Important dates this month:

There’s a lot happening in October! Read on for details on the following events/ workshops/ happenings:

  • Oct. 12-14: 2nd Grade Performances
  • Oct. 13, 5-6pm: Free ballet class demonstration for grades K-2 at ABS South
  • Oct. 13, 5-7pm: Invasive Plant Workshop at ABS North
  • Oct 14, 8:30am: Parent Council meeting in the MLK Cafe at ABS North and on Zoom
  • Oct 15, 9am: Garden and Grounds work day at ABS North
  • Oct 17-22: Scholastic Book Fair 
  • Oct 17-22: African drumming for ABS North K-4 students at Lloyd Presbyterian.
  • Oct. 21, 1:50pm: Friday Sing at ABS North
  • Oct 22, 12-2pm: ABS Fall Fest, held in the 7th Street Courtyard
  • Oct. 27, 1-2:15pm: Substitute teacher training at ABS South
  • Oct 31: Our Annual Giving push comes to a close. Please make your gift today!
  • Nov. 5, 9am-12pm: Positive Discipline Workshop at ABS North for all interested families

Annual Giving!

This month, we are celebrating the collective power of Annual Giving at The Arts Based School! From now until October 31, all gifts and pledges to the school will benefit the learning, doing, and creating that happens here every day. Please give as generously as you are able, and share the call to action with grandparents and extended family as well! Please look for weekly emails throughout the month from your Class Representative with updates on participation for your class.

We are truly grateful to everyone who has made a gift to the Annual Giving campaign so far! Thank you!

Total School Participation to Date: 17%

Total Gifts to Date: $16,425

Last year, by the end of October, we had 47% participation and $53,214 raised. We would love to raise the bar significantly for both of those numbers this year. Together, we can celebrate and support everything that we love about our school. To make your gift, send a check or visit https://www.artsbasedschool.com/apps/pages/giving

Thank you! 

African Drumming at ABS-North for K-4 Next Week

During their music times, K-4 students at ABS North will be walked by teachers to our neighboring friends, Lloyd Presbyterian Church, where they will be taught African drumming by Tam Tam Mandingue, along with their music teacher Mary Boudreault. (Mrs. B.) If you stop by to pick up or see your student during their regularly scheduled music time, you’ll find them at Lloyd Church.

Volunteer Opportunity: Help Mr. Court Clean Musical Instruments

On Monday, October 17, Mr. Court will be cleaning clarinets, flutes, and trumpets in anticipation of trading instruments at the 6th grade level. He will show you how to do it, if you’ll join him in the 7th Street music room between 8:20-10:45. Please let him know if you’re coming: [email protected]

Book Fair is next week!


We still have some rewarding volunteer opportunities available! Your help is very much appreciated! Signups below.

K-4: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/8050B4AA4AC23A02-absbook


5th-8th: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/8050b4aa4ac23a02-book


Give your child a safe, cashless way to shop the Book Fair. This digital payment option can be used at the in-school Book Fair or online at the Virtual Book Fair, where you'll discover an expanded selection of over 5,000 products. Plus, every purchase benefits our school! Visit FAQs to learn more.

To create your student's eWallet account, simply go to the website for your student's book fair. Please note that 7% tax rate will be added to purchase price of items bought at the book fair.

K-4: https://bookfairs.scholastic.com/bf/artsbasedschoolk4

5th-8th: https://bookfairs.scholastic.com/bf/artsbasedmiddleschool

UNCSA Ballet Class at ABS South

We are delighted to share that ABS and UNCSA Preparatory Dance Program are partnering to provide an after school ballet class for children in grades K-2. There will be a free demonstration class on Thursday, Oct 13, 5-6pm at ABS-South.

For more information and to register, see flyer 

Invasive Plant Workshop at ABS: October 13, 5-7pm

ABS parent and landscape architect Kristen Haaf is hosting a 2-hour free public workshop where we can learn about the most invasive weeds we struggle with in our bioregion (and our school) and how to go about managing them. We will also learn how to identify several native trees, shrubs, and grasses, learn about their benefits, and explore what we can do to protect them. The first half will be learning/workshop style, and in the second hour we will work together to cut back all the invasive weeds we can eradicate during that session, focusing on the hillside around the 7th Street parking lot. Join us!

Parent Council Meeting – Friday, October 14!

Please join us in person or virtually at the North Campus, cafe for Parent Council meeting on Friday, October 14 at 8:30am.  All ABS parents, families, and caregivers are part of the Parent Council and are welcome to attend! 

Garden Clean-Up, and an Eagle Scout Volunteer

Join us on Saturday, October 15 from 9 am onward. An Eagle Scout candidate and his team of supporting Scouts will visit the entrance gardens at our ABS North campus on MLK to clear out, clean up, and mulch! We welcome all the help we can get! Bring your tools, pruners, loppers, work gloves, wheelbarrows, etc. There will be more gardening dates ahead!

Schedule Change:

Friday Sing at ABS North campus has been moved to October 21.


Fall Fest
Saturday, October 22 is this year’s Fall Fest! Look out for more information on Fall Fest soon! 

Substitute Teachers Needed!

ABS relies on many great substitute teachers to support our students when our teachers are absent from school. Our current substitutes are wonderful, but we just don’t have enough people to meet our needs. If you are interested in learning more about subbing at ABS and/or attending a training session, please complete this form. Principal Hollis will be conducting the training session covering the basics and expectations for subbing at ABS. The pay rate for substitute teachers is $15 per hour. Training date-October 27, 1:00-2:15 pm at South Campus.


Prospective Parent Tours

School tours for prospective parents are scheduled weekly on Thursdays at 9:30am. Each tour is limited to 10 adults in an effort to limit the disruption to our students and teachers in the classrooms. Parents interested in learning more about ABS and how to enroll their child, should contact the front office to sign up for a tour. 748-4116 ext 1023. Applications will be accepted beginning January 1. The lottery will be held the second Tuesday of February. An Open House Tour of South Campus will be held Nov. 15, 5-6pm.


Halloween is Coming

Please do not send students to school in costumes. We all enjoy the fun and excitement of Halloween but find that costumes and accessories make it very difficult to concentrate. Also we do not want students to bring candy in their lunch bags for snacks. Although it can be delicious, high sugar snacks should not replace a healthy snack. Thanks for your help!


Around Town

Producer, comedy writer, and actor Michael Schur (The Office, Parks and Recreation, The Good Place) is coming to Wake Forest on October 17 at 7:30, to talk about his new best-selling, hilarious book about ethics and his show The Good Place, in Brendle Recital Hall. The event is free and open to the public. More details HERE.


UNCSA Nutcracker Tea Events 

Here is the link for more information about The Nutcracker Tea Party webpage: http://UNCSA.edu/nutcrackertea

ABS students get the discounted rate of $20 for NTP tickets. They will just need to use this code: PREPDANCE on the box office website when they book.