ABS Thursday Notes-March 9, 2023

Published for the Arts Based School Community

March 9, 2023

How We Do It and Why

By Mary Siebert

Man's mind, stretched to a new idea, never goes back to its original dimension. 

– Oliver Wendell Holmes.

Our teachers meet at grade level with specialists on a rotating basis, to share ideas for integrating the arts and inspiring learning. We sit together with the remaining whisps of attention we can squeeze forth at the end of a demanding day, when students are safely on their way home, and driving to the soccer fields and piano lessons, or household chores lie ahead of us. 

Arts integration can reveal surprise mini-geysers of unexpected talent among our students. We frequently find that the very child who struggles daily with classroom studies of a more traditional sort will suddenly reveal surprising skill or self-expression through the arts. And this often leads to a fresh flow of curiosity for the learner. Curiosity is one of the most precious resources in the world. 

This sort of bursting forth of artistic radiance causes the child to be seen afresh by their fellow students and their teachers. It is not uncommon for them to surprise their parents, too. I have seen many a tear flow from parents who exclaim: “I didn’t even know she could sing!”

So at these arts integration meetings, the gathered staff sit as though on a mini front-porch, sharing stories of successes that took us by surprise. Yesterday, with the 4th grade team, there was awe in the description of a little girl who was able to execute preternatural, complex “hambone” rhythms, which dance teacher Miss Rains had learned at her own grandmother’s knee in Granville County. We marveled, to think of that grandmother’s energy reignited through this little girl.

Art teacher Ms. Trish told about a boy who often runs into trouble with rule following. He was the first one in class to break the rules about use of pins and needles as the students learn hand-sewing and quilt-making basics. He spent most of the first day of these lessons in the office, away from the delicate and pointed tools. But by the third day of class, he magically transformed into a highly organized stitcher, pinning his fabric expertly, planning, organizing, threading and knotting with little to no assistance, and maintaining fascinated focus. 

4th Grade teacher Mrs. Meeks told about two students who can’t bring themselves to speak any of the lines, tell any of the jokes, or participate in any of the storytelling. But when they are given readings from the authentic reminiscences of factory workers in the 1920s, they come to life and capture fascinated listeners. 

These little triumphs become bigger ones, in the development of our students. That feeling of success and fascination contribute to a child’s belief that he or she can learn, can achieve, and can find learning rewarding. 

4th Grade “Like a Family” Presentations

4th grade classes will share their performances of Like a Family at the Ewing black box theater in the MLK building of the ABS-North campus. The performance will last between 30-45 minutes.

12:00 Tuesday, March 21 - Meeks’ Class

12:00 Wednesday, March 22 - Robertson’s Class

12:00 Thursday, March 23 - McGarry-Pike’s Class

Peter and the Wolf Performance Videos

The archival videos of our Peter and the Wolf performances are now posted in the Family Portal! (If you need help accessing the portal, you can always reach out to us.) Please keep in mind that these videos are intended for families, students, and friends of The Arts Based School. They were produced for educational purposes only, and may not be downloaded or shared on social media. Thank you, and enjoy the show(s)!

Staffing/Hiring  2023-24 School Year

As we look toward the 2023-24 school year, we have some staff positions to hire.  We have posted these positions on our website.  If you are interested, or know someone who would be a great match for ABS, please send them to our website for an application.

Summer Camp Openings

Summer camps are filling quickly! Take a look at your summer schedules and find an ABS camp that will work for you! Registrations are ongoing. If you have questions about billing or invoicing, please reach out to Angela Garner. For other questions, please reach out to Mrs. Hollis.

Parent Council Meeting - March 17th- 

Our next meeting is Friday, March 17th, at 8:30am in the Cafe of the MLK Building. If there is an agenda item you want considered for discussion, please submit the topic to [email protected] 

School Calendar 2023-24

The ABS Board of Directors is considering the school calendar for 2023-24. If you would like to review the original draft calendar, Calendar Draft A, Calendar Draft B and provide feedback, please respond to this form.

School Calendar Considerations

  • 180 days of instruction
  • Major breaks coincide with WS/FC schools
  • Trimester system allows teacher workdays to coincide with parent/teacher conferences
  • Begin school year earlier than WS/FC school to secure enrollment and fill from waiting list
  • Snow Make up days are built into calendar throughout the school year 
  • Gather input from teachers, staff, and parents


Nominations for Parent Council Board

We will be accepting nominations for the Parent Council Board positions at the March Parent Council Meeting.  Please consider running for one of these positions or encourage another parent to do so.  Getting involved on the Parent Council Board is a great way to get more involved at ABS.  Following are the positions that make up the Parent Council Board.

Board Positions

  • Co-Chairs ( 2 years)
  • Class Representative Coordinator (1 year) 
  • Secretary (1 year)     
  • Teacher Appreciation Coordinators ( 1 year)     
  • Technical Support Coordinators (1 year)  



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!


Around Town

Chase the Dream 5K

To register for the Dream Center's 'Chase the Dream' 5K or Fun Run, scan the QR code or visit https://runsignup.com/Race/NC/WinstonSalem/ChasetheDream