From November 2011

THE GARDEN Movie Screening, Dec 9

Please join us for a free screening of the Academy Award nominated documentary THE GARDEN on Friday, December 9, at 6PM, in the Micheltorena School Auditorium. THE GARDEN was produced and directed by fellow Micheltorena parent, Scott Hamilton Kennedy.  See the trailer here:

This screening aims to raise awareness and support for the Micheltorena Street Elementary School and Community Garden.   A question and answer discussion with the filmmaker and garden organizers will follow the screening.

Parents, children and community members welcome! Parking will be available in the school’s back parking lot, with entrance on Golden Gate Street.  We will also have a movie for children with snacks and supervision in a classroom next to the Auditorium.  The film will have both English and Spanish subtitles.

Bluepalm gets parents moving!

The first Bluepalm parent dance class was held on November 18 at Micheltorena!  Participants learned more about the Micheltorena Arts Plan, practiced the Bluepalm warm-up, explored why all cultures dance, and let loose with a wild and sophisticated series of moves to enhance cardio fitness, coordination, stretching, and joy!

The parent movement class helps to build parent advocacy for the arts. Parents were able to describe what dance brings to the body and mind – focus, energy, effort, rhythm, beauty – and why these components are essential in teaching to the whole child.  The next Bluepalm Parent Movement class will be held on Friday, December 9 at 10 A.M. in Room 7.

Check out Bluepalm in action at Micheltorena in their video below!

Micheltorena News, Fall 2011

Thank you to everyone who came out for Micheltorena PTA’s First Annual Great Pumpkin Festival on October 29!  We had a great time on the lower play-yard, with a bake sale, delicious food, a raffle, games, amazing music and performances, a scary haunted house, balloon animals, a kiddie train ride, and a visit by two magnificent fire trucks.  Parents and teachers both came out to help make the day a great success, and helped the PTA raise just over $2000, all of which will go towards funding buses for school field trips throughout the year.  We are already looking forward to next year’s festival!  Scroll down to the end of this post to see pictures of the festival. 
The Friends of Micheltorena will be having its bi-monthly meeting on Tuesday, November 15 at 5pm (changed from 4pm!) at the school.  The Friends of Micheltorena is a non-profit group whose activities include stewardship of the school and community garden, the banner program, school beautification, community outreach, as well as grant-writing and fundraising for school projects and activities.  All are welcome to attend.

Micheltorena’s Family Math Night is happening on Tuesday, November 22 at 5pm. Bring the whole family for math games and fun, hosted by our teachers!
We have a new library aide for our Wonder of Reading library!  His name is Mr. Hunter and he comes to us after serving the Los Feliz Elementary library for six years.  Don’t forget to sign your child’s waiver so he/she can check books out of the library!
The PTA is happy to announce that Mr. Carillo’s second grade class was awarded a Subway sandwich party for achieving the highest percentage of PTA memberships for a class during our PTA membership drive.  Congratulations!  However, it’s not too late to become a member of the PTA. Membership is open to EVERYONE!  To join, fill out a membership envelope and drop it in the PTA box in the school box.  Membership is $7 per person for the year, with fees going to support PTA activities at the Micheltorena, city, state and national level.
The Micheltorena Arts Plan is in full swing, with after-school classes in art and design, held in the garden, as well as dance and fitness, that began on November 4.  Classes are taught jointly by Micheltorena teachers and Blue Palm artists!  Parents don’t need to feel left out of the fun; there is even a movement and kinesthetics class for parents to be held on Friday November 18 at 10am.  Field trips have also started as well, notably with visits by the 4th graders to the Gene Autry museum in October, and upcoming visits by the second graders to the Getty Villa and a Nutcracker ballet trip for the kindergarteners coming up in December!

The Silver Lake Conservatory of music has also settled in on campus and now shares our auditorium for it’s chorus and ensemble classes.  Students are also enjoying new classes and music instruction during the school day provided by Conservatory teachers.  We are so happy they are with us, and look forward to a long and happy partnership with the Conservatory!

Our Harvest of the Month program at Micheltorena has also begun and is a big success.  The program, led by teacher Geralyn Buschelman, consists of a monthly program where teachers are provided with lessons for the students on a fruit or vegetable that is in season.  Donated produce is also delivered to the classrooms for children to try (rumor has it that Ms. Buschelman got ALL of her preschoolers to try TURNIPS!!)  Our community representative, Peter Valverde, has been hosting tastings in the parent center for parents, who have been able to take home samples of fresh produce.  The program also includes lessons on “rethinking your drink…choose water to drink!” as well as funding to support chefs in the classroom and in-class yoga instruction.  Lastly, the program provides newsletters with recipes and nutrition facts on in-season produce for children to take home to their families.  You can read more about this amazing program at

The school and community garden is flourishing with flowers, herbs and winter greens.  The garden is open to everyone, every Saturday from 10am to 2pm, for gardening, relaxing and eating.  Come by and cut some fresh herbs or harvest some greens for your Saturday dinner!

KISS kids at the face painting table
Flamenco dance by our own Ms. Vargas and daughter
Chocolate mustaches from the bake sale table
Bake sale hosts Jenny and Tootie from Reform School
Fire truck from Echo Park fire station
Moms helping out at the food tent
Solar workshop in the garden
A mask from the craft table
Spooky cake pops at the bake sale table
Kid Dracula and Moms
Kid Wolfman
Principal Furfari enjoying the day!