ABS Thursday Notes- January 19, 2023

Published for the Arts Based School Community

January 19, 2023

How We Do It and Why

By Mary Siebert

“There are shortcuts to happiness, and dancing is one of them.” - Vicki Baum


Next week, each of our five kindergarten classes will perform a re-telling of Peter and the Wolf at the ABS Ewing Blackbox Theater, with an audience of wildly enthusiastic fans, namely: their families. There have been weeks of preparation, leading up to this important event.


Kindergarten students and their teachers use Prokofiev’s beloved musical tale to study story structure and sequence, character and setting, and scientific examination of animal movement. They compare the evil wolves in children’s literature with real wolves, discovering that the shy creatures are family oriented and have been vilified through much of classic fiction.


Meanwhile, students are exploring the individual characters in the story through music and dance, learning to identify each of them through the musical instrument and the individual melodic themes that are particular to them, as assigned by the composer. They work with their knowledge of animals, people, story, and music to portray the characters through dance. It’s something of a revelation: you can actually tell a story through dance!


After learning all of the movement for all of the characters, the students are each assigned to dance the role of one character from the story, which they then piece together for a public performance attended by their family. The teachers are available to step in at any point, to provide the little dancers with a visual safety net. When the duck appears on stage, there are actually three or more ducks waddling together. If stage fright confuses the little ducklings, they can look up at their tall teacher, who will step in as needed, and follow. The classroom teacher and assistant wait at the sides with groups of cats, hunters, birds, etc. to remind students when it is time to step onto the stage.


Our 8th graders recall their Peter and the Wolf experience from way back in kindergarten with nostalgic delight. They remember themselves not as a group of cats but as THE Cat. For a kindergartener, the combination of working together to tell a story this way is still a very individualized experience. 

Kindergarten Performances of Peter and the Wolf January 30 - February 3

The Kinders will perform by individual class at noon. The performance is brief and parking can be challenging, so 11:45 arrival is encouraged, at the ABS Ewing Theater at the ABS-North campus, at 1380 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, at noon. 

Heck: Monday, Jan. 30

Barnes: Tuesday, Jan. 31

Roberson (Mrs. Z): Wednesday, Feb. 1

Greene: Thursday, Feb. 2

Warren (Miss Gracie): Friday, Feb. 3

Admittance is free, but donations are gratefully accepted

6th Grade Math & Science Dances Performance January 19

The performance of this event begins at 6:00 TODAY, February 19, and lasts a little under half an hour. 6th Graders will congregate at SECCA between 5:30-5:45, dressed in black dance clothing. Admittance is free, but donations are gratefully accepted. SECCA (the (Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art,) is located at 750 Marguerite Drive, in Winston-Salem. 


Student Intent for 2023-24 School Year

As we prepare for next year’s enrollment lottery (2023-24), it is important to know how many spaces are available in each grade. As a current student, your child has priority placement and no additional action is required. If your child is not returning to ABS for the 2023-24 school year, please notify Principal Hollis [email protected]. Siblings of students also receive priority, but must fill out an enrollment application in Lotterease. You must complete an application for the 2023-24 school year for siblings of current students in order to reserve a space before the lottery. The deadline for receiving applications is Jan 31 at 3pm. Applications are available on our school website: www.artsbasedschool.com/enroll

Skate Night for ABS

ABS Builders Club will be hosting a schoolwide skate night! All ABS students are invited to participate. A parent/guardian must stay at Skate Haven during skate night.


Where: Skate Haven, 120 Hood Dr #2440 

When: Tuesday, January 31st 6:30-8pm

Cost: $6.00 

MAP Testing in January continues

Third through eighth grade students will complete the second round of MAP testing in January. After the testing is complete, parents will receive an updated score report showing the progress your student has made this year.

Order Your Yearbook

Yearbooks are available for order now!  Our yearbook includes both campuses. Orders can be placed by visiting the Strawbridge website at http://www.strawbridge.net/ and clicking the red “Order Pictures and Yearbooks” button at the top of the page. The price is $25 and our school code is YB25672.

Lost and Found

We have many coats and jackets in the Lost and Found at ABS South and the MLK Building. If your child is missing something, please come have a look! We hope to have items on display when the weather clears.

Set-Moving Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteers are needed to move sets, props and costumes! These are high-energy, rewarding tasks that help us produce our beautiful performances. These magical shows do not just magically happen...we rely upon magic-making volunteers! You are invited to log DOUBLE VOLUNTEER HOURS for these set-moving tasks:

-Friday February 3, 3:00-4:00 p.m.

-Friday February 24, 3:00-4:00 p.m.

If you can help with either of these, please sign up HERE. We will meet in the Ewing Theater at ABS North.

Thank you!!

We owe a huge thank you to Roots First (led by ABS parent Kristen Haaf), the Winston-Salem Garden Club Council, and the volunteers who spent the morning planting seven shade trees and hundreds of bulbs at ABS North! Stay tuned for more opportunities to help keep our grounds beautiful!

2023 Summer Camps

Mark your calendar NOW and set a reminder for February 3! Registration for ABS summer camps will open to ABS families February 3. We can't wait to share all the details with you later this month! 



Assistant Principal for the Day

Does your child want a chance to be Assistant Principal for the day? We hold drawings every month at Friday Sing! You can purchase raffle tickets online or in the front office of your campus to give your child a chance to be Assistant Principal of the Day. Assistant Principals have their own desk, name tag, and list of very important duties for the day. All proceeds from the raffle support our teacher appreciation fund and allow us to do special things for our staff throughout the year. Thank you, and good luck!



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 January 19, 5-6pm.


Inclement Weather

In the event of inclement weather, ABS will announce school closings on local TV channels, under “The Arts Based School.'' This information will also be posted on the ABS website (www.artsbasedschool.com).

Around Town

There is a “Read Write Spell” literacy fair this Saturday, January 28! Please see the attached flier for details.