Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Connecting Waters Charter School Information Session, Thursday, May 20, 3-6pm @ Fremont Main Library


What: Connecting Waters Charter School Information Session

When: Thursday, May 20, 2010, from 3-6 p.m.,
Session I: 3:00-4:30 p.m., Session II: 4:30-6 p.m. (session presentations are identical)

Where: Fremont Main Library
Fukaya Room A
2400 Stevenson Blvd.
Fremont, CA 94538
(510) 745-1424

What:
Curious about homeschooling through a charter school? You're invited to attend an Information Session to learn more about parent-driven Connecting Waters Charter School and non-classroom based education for K-12 students through:

• Student Project Displays
• Informative Parent Panel Discussions
• Q&A with the Executive Director and Education Specialists

Current CWCS families are encouraged to attend. No registration is required. This is a FREE event open to the public. Children are always welcome.

QUESTIONS:
Call or e-mail: Connecting Waters Charter School
1.800.808.9895 X 6
http://www.connectingwaters.org/
cwcs@connectingwaters.org

or call/e-mail me, Janine Weston (Volunteer Coordinator), 510-299-2586 , janinemweston@yahoo.com

Please forward this message on to those who may be interested.

Thanks,

Janine Weston, MLIS
Connecting Waters Charter School Homeschooling Parent
Fremont Main Library Volunteer

Friday, April 16, 2010

Social Networking: Making the Most of STAR Testing

On April 7th, many enthusiastic Connecting Waters parents and children from the East Bay Area congregated in a Fremont church parking lot for the annual STAR testing. A nervous charge filled the air as students were signed in and led to their classrooms. Once our dedicated scholars had departed, parents either clumped into small groups to socialize, headed to the park with younger siblings, or left to run errands.

After 2 days of informal mingling and idea-swapping, I had an idea. It was time to get down to business! On day 3, I proposed that we get together and have a "curriculum chat" to share what products and services we are using with our children. I quickly made my way around the parking lot to invite those present, and directed everyone to form a circle in the shade. Never did I guess that our spontaneous, 45-minute meeting would have been so beneficial to all who participated!

We each introduced ourselves, shared our city of residence and the ages of our children and then proceeded to pour out the essence of our homeschooling content for all ears to hear. After one pass around the circle we then asked parents to suggest classes or programs that their children enjoyed. We continued to reap the benefits of knowledge that comes from a community of homeschoolers with much wisdom and experience. I hastily took notes on the educational resources shared and agreed to e-mail out the list to the participants. We sent around a clipboard for e-mails and decided that a Google Group was in order. Establishing an online group would create a communication tool, resource guide, and support network for East Bay CWCS Parents.

Following our group chat, parents were then able to approach others that had common interests, similar challenges, and children in the same grades. For the future, we've thought about starting weekly summer park days to better build a sense of community among Alameda County CWCS families. Even without a physical learning center in our county, we can still build a social network for support and connection.


Next year, with the help of our test-site coordinator, we are hoping to integrate a "hands-on curriculum" element so that parents can bring and share what they are using, giving Connecting Waters families the opportunity to take a peek at what others are using.


All current Connecting Waters families are encouraged to join our community and start collaborating. E-mail janinemweston@yahoo.com or call 510-299-2586 to be added to the Connecting Waters East Bay Parents group. Contact Janine if you'd like help setting up your own social network. Let's get connected at Connecting Waters Charter School!