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Viking Parent Nov 1, 2012
Posted Date: 10/30/2012

Viking Parent

Crocker Middle School

Hillsborough, California

Posted Date:

Nov 1, 2012

The Viking Parent will be emailed to Crocker parents on approximately the 1st and 15th of each month. At the same time The Viking Parent will be posted and archived on the school websites. The electronic newsletters provide highlighted links to print out flyers, to access websites and to email personnel easily. The "In This Issue" section lists the major sections within the newsletter. You can click on a highlighted link and go directly to that section of the newsletter. In the "Dates to Remember" section you can view and print out the most recent Crocker and district calendars.

In This Issue

Click here for the HCSD Master Calendar

Nov 1

Last day to renew your Safeway Card at eScrip

Nov 4

Community Mural Painting Day

10am – 4pm

Nov 6

HSF Pledge Day – Annual Campaign Kick-off

Nov 6

All School Spirit Day

Nov 6

Picture Retake Day

Nov 7

Superintendent’s Coffee

8:45am (District Office)

Nov 7

Faculty Meeting, No Homework Center

Nov 12

Veteran’s Day – No School

Nov 14

End of 1st Trimester

Nov 15-17

Crocker Musical, Grease

7pm (MPR)

Nov 16

Speaker: Modell Marlow Andersen, STAR Test

Nov 18

Crocker Musical, Grease

2pm (MPR)

Nov 21

Turkey Trot, No Late Start, Noon Dismissal

Nov 22- 26

Thanksgiving Holiday, No School

Nov 27

Return to School

Nov 28

7th-8th Grade Basketball Season begins


Clink on “key words” below to activate links.

Crocker Parent Dues - Dues

Volunteer at Crocker - Signup

Revolution Foods Lunch Program – Menu

HTV – Crocker Newscasts

Hillsborough Recreation – Activities

Blessings in Disguise

As most of you know by now, both of my sons play competitive ice-hockey at the junior level. We were fortunate enough this year that a franchise was purchased in the Bay Area, which meant that our sons would not be moving to Minnesota, but instead they would live at home for at least one more year.

When reviewing the boy’s contracts with the new owner of the team, he asked my husband and me if we would be interested in billeting a couple of out of town hockey players at our house for the season. We responded by telling him that in any other year, we would be more than happy to help out with billeting players, but this year, our youngest is a senior and this may very well be the last year all of our kids are home, together, and we really want to make the most of our time together. He said he completely understood. And, that was that.

Ironically and only three weeks into the preseason, my sons brought home four young men for dinner one Friday evening. These young men were thoughtful, respectful, and more than grateful for a home cooked meal. After dinner, our sons approached us to let us know that the four boys’ living situations had fallen through. They continued to share that the boys had nowhere to go until it was settled, which should be in the next five to seven days. My husband and I told our boys that we were glad to see they were sensitive to their teammates’ needs and that of course they could stay for the week until new homes were found… that was six weeks ago…

What is comical about our situation is, we were nervous to billet other kids in our home because we didn’t want anything/anyone to take away from what could possibly be our last year together, at home, as a whole family unit, but instead, oddly enough, it has turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

I know what you are thinking; how could this be a blessing in disguise? You have more cooking and cleaning, your grocery bill has just doubled, not to mention your utilities, and yes, all of that is true! But, as we are getting to know these young men better by them talking about their families, and sharing their childhood stories, it has caused our children to do the same as our guests are trying to get to know us, too. Now, everyone makes it a point to be home for dinner, but more importantly there is more of an effort to be present; no cell phones, texting, laptops, it is pure bliss! Then there is the laughter; it never stops as it permeates throughout the entire house.

We may have done them a favor by taking them in, but they did us a favor by giving us the opportunity to walk down memory lane, as a family by simply remembering everything that brought us to where we are today.

I always find the month of November symbolizes for me, a time of reflection. To be grateful for how blessed I truly am. To challenge myself to look at situations or challenges through a lens of possibilities, instead of viewing them as distracters, or obstacles standing in the way of what I think I need. I hope that you, too, will take a moment to reflect, share and laugh with your families over the next few weeks. The memories we make now with our families and loved ones are the memories that we safely tuck away in our hearts, to be drawn upon at a later date when we need them the most.

Happy Thanksgiving to the Crocker Team, students and parents and my administrative colleagues! I feel blessed to be a part of the Hillsborough community.

Catherine Ward-Mikes,

Proud Principal of Crocker Middle School

A few things to be proud of:

  • Our sixth graders made it through Outdoor Education! They loved it!
  • Our sixth grade parents made it through Outdoor Education! I think they loved it, too!
  • The Trivia Team made it a 3-Peat and won the Trivia challenge this year for the third time in a row.
  • Our sixth graders survived their first ice skating party!
  • Mr. Collins survived chaperoning his first dance; the Halloween Dance.
  • HTV is doing an amazing job with the morning news show. A big thank you to all who are involved!
  • Crocker Administrative and Lead Teachers attended a Common Formative Assessment Conference in San Jose. It was phenomenal information that we are already putting to good use.
  • Our first set of conferences has concluded. Chris and I have had good feedback from both teachers and parents. Thank you for your partnership.
  • Our kiddos attended the Shelter Network Breakfast, and our very own Ben, grade 8, won an award for his philanthropic giving! Thank you Ms. Fairchild and Mr. Carroll for overseeing service learning.
  • The leadership kids are doing a great job around campus, especially with the lost and found articles!
  • Laura Jadelrab and the CJSF kids had a very successful "Pack your Back" day today, all day designated to organizing students backpacks.
  • Crocker’s first networking meetings were well attended, and positive feedback was shared by all grade levels. Thank you to the parents who hosted these events for the benefit of all who attended.
  • Chris and I have been in and out of the classrooms, and we are seeing some pretty awesome teaching and learning going on!
  • The Giants swept the Tigers to win the World Series
  • And, on a personal note, my daughter was named the 2012-2013 “Best Voice” at her high school this year!

Important Information and/or Dates:

It’s the Law

Current sixth grade parents please begin bringing in your child’s proof of t-dap immunization so that we can ensure that child starts seventh grade with the rest of their classmates on the first day of school.

A note from the office:

Eighth Grade Students Applying for Private High Schools

Any request for copies of records, which include transcripts, must be made 72 hours in advance of your deadline.

Request for letters of recommendation and/or records must be made no later than 3:30 PM, on Friday, November 30, 2012. Any requests made after November 30, 2012 cannot be accepted.

All Parents; 6th, 7th, and 8th Grade


When your child misses school, for any reason, please contact the office. Your notification is the only one that clears a child’s absence. Although notifying your child’s teacher is advised, it does not clear the absence through the office.

Requests for Elective Schedule Changes: The 48 hour window to request an elective change will begin on November 14th, and close on November 16th, at 3:10 PM. A parent signature is required for ALL elective change requests.

Crocker Parent Group Meeting with Special Guest Speaker

Please join us in the Crocker Library on Friday, Nov 16th , 9 a.m. for a Parent Group Meeting featuring guest speaker, Modell Marlow Andersen. As the Director of Educational Services for HCSD, Ms. Marlow Andersen will answer all of your questions regarding STAR Testing Results. If you haven’t seen her presentation before, you will not want to miss this, and if you have seen it in the elementary schools, her focus this time will be on Crocker and district results, and how they fit in to the larger picture for students. She will also talk about anticipated changes to the testing system as the new Common Core Standards are introduced. Coffee and snacks will be served at 8:45 a.m. with the presentation starting at 9 a.m..


6th Grade Spooky Skate Party

Our heartfelt thanks goes to Co-chairs Dierdre Zimits and Kelly Layton for organizing a spooktacular 6th grade skate party :) From the spooky fun decorations, to the relay skating games, to amazing prizes for the costume contest, the event was meticulously organized and executed, making it one of the most memorable events for the 6th graders this year. Our sincere thanks also goes to the dedicated team of volunteers who helped Dierdre and Kelly, consisting of Eudora Ting, Rana Brown, Sheri & Andre Morin, Kathy Liu, Lily Eneyati, Debbie Icardi, Kellie Meyers, Aida Kedefors, Ann Mahoney, Christina Meints, Tracy Huebner, Nancy Heafey, Regina Sheynblat, Lucy Sun Tom, and Julie Dennerline.

7th and 8th Grade Halloween Dance

Thank you to the faculty chaperones and our parent volunteers for making the dance a treat for all! Kudos to Julia Davidson, Wenli Wang, Shelly Green, Carol Lambson, and Karyn Allen.

Mural Project Volunteers

We have made a lot of progress on the Crocker Mural Project, thanks in part to the parents and faculty members who have given up their time after school on Fridays to chaperone the students during the planning and drawing sessions. Our most sincere thanks go to Ann Lee, Giselle Beucus, Sandi daRoza, Sherry Haber, Regine Rogers, Aida Kedefors, April Filer and Lisa Baba, Chris Collins, Richard Lu, and Marie Monaco who have chaperoned the sessions so far.

If you are interested in chaperoning any of the upcoming Friday after school sessions which run from 3:15-5:15, please contact Harini Krishnan at

Community Mural Painting Day, Sunday, November 4th, 10 am to 4 pm

Sunday, November 4th, is the Community Mural Painting Day from 11 am to 4 pm. No need to bring anything except your enthusiasm and maybe clothes that can get paint on them!

Remember anyone in the Hillsborough community can participate! Join us on November 4th to honor Mrs. Janet Chun and to celebrate our Crocker traditions!


HTV programming is now on To view the 6th Grade Retreat, please go to:

To view the latest Crocker HTV Newscasts, please go to:

Thanks to all the parent volunteers who have helped film for Crocker HTV: Angela An, Andre Morin, Andrea O'Riordan, Neeti Sandhu, Leo Simone, Wendi Van der Meer


Crocker Trivia Team

Congratulations to the Crocker Trivia Team for their Three-peat win in the Serra High School Trivia and Scavenger Hunt! Under the inimitable faculty supervision of Alec Mackenzie and with the enthusiastic student leadership of captain, Kaitlin H. and her co-captain Annabelle T., the Crocker Trivia Team came out on top once again with a 35 point margin over the second place team. They competed against seven other middle schools from San Mateo County and came in first place for the third year in a row! They didn’t get every question correct, but for the first time in many years, they managed to track down all fifteen of the scavenger hunt items – even the most obscure items! No other competitor was able to accomplish this. Thank you to all Crocker student participants and everyone in the Hillsborough community (from all four schools) who sent in answers or leads to trivia questions and scavenger hunt items. This was a great team effort!


6th Grade Outdoor Ed News

Our 6th graders are home safe and sound after a fun-filled, rain-filled, and eco-friendly-filled week at Outdoor Ed. Thank you to Ron Frankel and all of the faculty chaperones and high school cabin leaders who gave our children a memorable week at Jones Gulch. In case your camper has been short on giving detailed reports, here are the highlights of the week:
Beach Day
Night Hike
Emerald Grove
Buckeye Grove
Big Red and Dead Fred
Skit Night
Banana Slug Club - kiss a banana slug
Hard Core Club - eat an apple to the core, all but stem and seeds
Wood Cookie Club - put your entire wood cookie pendant in your mouth
Mud Club - rub mud on your face
Charcoal Club - rub charcoal from a burnt tree on your face
Mountain Mama Club - do your business in the woods
Happy Hiker Club - smile the entire time while hiking uphill to the garden.


6th Grade Crocker Cotillion


The history for attendance at the 6th Grade Crocker Cotillion is typically 85%; we are hoping for 100% attendance for this year's class!

Please mark your calendars and in the next month, watch your email inbox for a invitation for your son or daughter to attend the 2013 6th Grade Crocker Cotillion. Eight Cotillion sessions will be held in the Crocker MPR on Monday nights from 7-8 pm, beginning on January 14, 2013, and concluding on March 25, 2013 (1/14, 1/28, 2/4, 2/11, 2/25, 3/11, 3/18 and 3/25). THE FINAL CLASS IS A PARENT/CHILD DANCE.

Your son or daughter will learn roughly five popular ballroom dances including the Foxtrot, Waltz, Tango and the Cha-cha-cha. The instructor is Barry Woodruff who has been leading the Crocker Cotillion for many, many years. The training is done in both small and large group settings. Your child will learn about the protocol with respect to formal dancing; from asking for the dance, to dancing, to escorting their dance partner back to their seats.

Your response and payment of $80.00 is due by Friday, December 14, 2012. You may purchase tickets by clicking on the following link: or by sending a personal check made out to

Crocker Parent Group, c/o Cotillion, 20 Patton Place, Hillsborough, CA 94010. Please note... this is the CROCKER Cotillion, not to be confused with the non-Crocker Junior Manners' Cotillion program.

If you have any questions regarding the Crocker Cotillion, or if you do NOT receive an invitation by the end of November, please contact Cotillion Co-Chairs, Denee Berliner (, Christina Ching (, or Ingrid Kitahata (


Science Olympiad

Science teacher Amanda Siegel and Principal Catherine Mikes are supervising this year’s students interested in competing in the Science Olympiad. The Regional competition is February 9th at Foothills High School in Pleasanton, CA. It is an all-day event. They are determining regular meeting times, so if your child loves science and wants to join the team, please contact Amanda Siegel or Catherine Mikes

Our Community Service drive during November for “ONE GOOD NIGHT” a drive for new slippers, pjs’, nightgowns or robes, or bedtime story books, for our read-to-a child event at Shelter Network later in November.

The drive for sleepwear lasts from Nov 5 to Nov. 20. Please donate what you can to the bedtime box outside the front office at Crocker Middle School. A little child at the Shelter Network will have a better night because of your generosity.

The following Community service opportunities are also available:

  • Beach Clean-up, November 17, 9 to noon in East Palo Alto
  • Hillsborough Community Garden: 5 Sundays, from 2 to 4 pm: Nov. 4 and 18
  • Crocker Mural Project: sketching and painting on Fridays in Nov 3:15-5:00 p.m. and Sunday Nov 4, 11:00 am - 4:00 pm Sign up on the Community Service Wall outside Bonnie Slater’s office near MPR.

If you have any questions regarding Community Service, please contact Audrey Fairchild.

HSF SPOTLIGHT: Pledge Day, Tuesday, November 6th

The Hillsborough School Foundation (HSF) has started its 33rd Annual Giving Campaign where, through generous donations from families like yours, we are able to raise private funds to aid our public schools and provide our children with the best possible education.

Last year, HSF pledged $3.4 million to the school district for 2012-2013, representing 17% of our district’s budget. It is because of the generosity of donors like you that we are able to preserve small class sizes, retain all of our classroom teachers, and maintain our ranking in the top 1% of California Public Schools.

However, every year we start at zero, so we need your continued support. Please make a pledge on or before November 6th, Pledge Day! You should have received a pledge envelope in the mail with our Annual Report mailed last week. Please visit our website for more information or to make a pledge or donation online.

Together, we are all HSF and every contribution matters. THANK YOU!


  • Look for your pledge envelope in the HSF Annual Report! Make sure to fill it out and return it to the HSF Office (300 El Cerrito Avenue) by Pledge Day, November 6th.
  • There may be significant tax advantages for your family to donate appreciated securities to HSF instead of cash. Please consult your financial manager for advice on your individual situation. Click here for details on how to donate appreciated securities.
  • Did you remember to sign-up or renew your Safeway / credit cards at eScrip? Contact Naomi Petrushka if you need help. Deadline to renew is today, November 1st.
Citizen of the Year and Community Care Award Nominations

The Associated Parents' Group is seeking nominations for the Hillsborough Schools' Citizen of the Year and Community Care Award. The Citizen of the Year Award honors a resident who has made a sustained and significant contribution to Hillsborough and especially to the education and wellbeing of our children. Nominees should be widely recognized as respected leaders who have created a lasting legacy for our community, and their children should have matriculated beyond Hillsborough Schools. The Community Care Award honors a non-resident, typically in a salaried position with the School District or Town of Hillsborough or other vital community role. Nominees will have made a sustained and significant contribution that has broadly touched the lives of our children. Nominations for these awards are being sought from the whole community. Recipients will be honored at a reception held in the spring.

Please take a few minutes to nominate candidates for these awards by Tuesday, December 4, 2012 using the forms that can be found by clicking on the following links:

Hillsborough Schools' Citizen of the Year 

Hillsborough Community Care 



The Town of Hillsborough adopted the U. S. Army 101st Airborne Division, HHC, 1BCT (Ft Campbell, KY) and they are currently serving in Afghanistan. The Adopt-a-Unit Program needs your support. Care packages are shipped to 200+ soldiers every month. Please donate snack items (jerky, snack bars, sunflower seeds, packaged nuts, trail mix, crackers, cookies, chips in containers, gum, candy), ground coffee in bags, Crystal Light Powder Water Enhancer. Tax-deductible donations for postage are also appreciated—checks payable to “Hillsborough Adopt-a-Unit”. Drop off at Hillsborough Police Department any time or Town Hall during business hours. Thank you for lifting the spirits of our military. (Contact: LeAnn Thornton, 650/375-7450,

Drop off SNACKS (jerky, snack bars, sunflower seeds, packaged nuts, trail mix, crackers, cookies, chips in containers, gum, candy) to Town Hall or Hillsborough Police Department. Shipments sent every month. (Contact: LeAnn Thornton, 650/375-7450,

Too much Halloween candy in your house? Just drop it off to Town Hall or Hillsborough Police Department. We will send it to the Town's Adopt-a-Unit -- U.S. Army Soldiers serving in Afghanistan. Candy is a remembrance of home and soldiers cannot be home on Halloween. We have not forgotten them. The troops may also be sharing the candy with local children as a way to foster relationships. Many thanks for your generosity. (Contact: LeAnn Thornton, 650/375-7450,

We are collecting current issues of People, Us, Newsweek, Time, Sports Illustrated, Golf, Cars, Motorcycles, Trucks, Fishing, Hunting, Puzzle magazines to include in care packages for our adopt-a-unit Soldiers based in Afghanistan. Please drop them off at Town Hall of Hillsborough Police Department. Shipments sent every month. (Contact: LeAnn Thornton, 650/375-7450,



October 18th marked our 2nd state-wide ShakeOut earthquake drill. Did you brace under a strong table and practice your family's emergency communication plan? We had 38 of 84 HNN neighborhoods participate at some level in the drill and learned a lot more about how to communicate in a disaster situation. We'd also love to be connected to any ham radio enthusiasts here in Hillsborough. If you have a call sign, please let us know. If you'd like your neighborhood to get more involved, please email us at

Monday, November 5, 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM, Crocker Science Lab

HNN Town-wide Emergency Prep Info Session

PG&E's Gerry Kohlmann, Sr. Public Safety Specialist Gas Emergency Preparedness, will present gas and electricity safety tips and Robbie Turner of Nextdoor, the free private social network for your neighborhood, will introduce their platform to all interested residents. Burlingame and Belmont are using this system, as well as over 5,000 communities across the U.S. Come see the demo and hear the details about how beneficial this will be for communicating among neighbors and the larger Hillsborough community. All Hillsborough residents are invited to attend this informative evening. RSVPs greatly appreciated at


Hillsborough Memorial Day Parade Liaison Wanted.

Do you love a parade? Come join the team that produces Hillsborough's new tradition!

The parade committee is looking for a representative from each Hillsborough school who will:

  • attend a monthly parade meeting at Town Hall
  • recruit involvement from the school population to participate in the parade
  • coordinate the School Spirit Float. This can be simply a group of walkers with a banner or can get elaborate with decorating a vehicle for kids to ride upon.
If you are interested in volunteering or learning more, please contact Lilli Rey at

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