Emergency Preparedness – Cell Phone Use in Emergencies – Friday February 17, 2012

Hello Upper School Parents,We have the great fortune to have Mark Anderson, Nick’s father, presenting a series of lessons on emergency preparedness and first aid to our upper school students. Mark is a fireman and EMT, and he has years of experience dealing with emergencies of all sorts.

This Friday, February 17, Mark will be presenting a lesson on cell phone use in emergencies. We ask that students bring with them to school:

  • Their cell phones
  • A complete list of phone numbers for parents and guardians (land lines, business numbers, cell phone numbers)
  • A phone number of an out of state emergency contact (preferably not in the PNW — the farther away the better)

We look forward to learning what we can do to prepare ourselves for whatever comes our way!

“Twelfth Night” February 15 – 16

After suffering a slight sling and arrow of outrageous fortune – ie the snow storm – the 5th and 6th graders are ready to take their places in front of the lights! Do come and join us for a wonderful, futuristic look at Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night.
Suggested donation of $10.

Hillside Open House – This Saturday

Hello Hillside Families,

This weekend we are hosting an additional open house for those families who were snowed in in January. Please invite anyone who might be interested in learning more about our great school AND our magical summer program to stop by the Hillside this Saturday.

And thanks for spreading the word.

Hillside wouldn’t be Hillside without you.

Questions? Email Susan at susan@hillsidesc.org

Hillside Celebrates Halloween and El Día de los Muertos.

Halloween and El Día de los Muertos was a cause of much celebration and quite a bit of learning at Hillside.

The 5th and 6th grade took advantage of the ready availability of pumpkins to do a little math.  Their “Pumpkin Explorations” has them estimating the weight of the pumpkin and then testing their answers, estimating the number of seeds in each pumpkin and determing how close their prediction was to the actual answer and finally calculating how many seeds each student would get if they were distributed evenly.

Not only did they do some fine math but at the end of the day they had a jack o’ lantern as well.


The Spanish Class celebrated the Mexican holiday, El Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) which is celebrated on November 1st and 2nd. Scholars trace the origins of the modern Mexican holiday to indigenous observances dating back hundreds of years and to an Aztec festival dedicated to a goddess called Mictecacihuatl. Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed and visiting graves with these as gifts.


And of course there was the annual Halloween Party. Replete with great costumes, games, and sweets.

Light, Music, Dancing, and Games at Hillside’s Yule Ball

December’s Yule Ball was a delightful celebration full of light, music, dancing, and games, both for current students and their guests.  We are grateful to Seniors Alex Nolan and Riley Miller who organized students and parents to send out invitations, to decorate the upper school with festive lights, and to feed us a feast of meats, cheeses, crackers, cookies, and more.  Everyone came dressed in holiday best and wearing masks that made one feel as if we were at the Carnival in Venice.  Kevin Mills played enchanting and contemplative music on his beautiful harp.  Kathy Frugé-Brown taught and called contra-dances and kept us laughing and lively throughout the evening.  We jigged around to the Eastern European twang of klezmer bands in a wild game of musical chairs—and, in a limbo challenge, Isabel Wallace and Jack Alford flexed further below that broomstick than anyone else.  After some final notes from the harp and a few more dance steps, everyone pitched in to clean up before taking off for the winter vacation.  The entire evening was a joy and a pleasure.


February Bulletin – 2012

Although slammed by the recent surprise January snowstorm, we boldly stride forward into February and hope for the best!  Events this month include our 5th/6th grades’ amazing, futuristic production of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, another Open House for families unable to come because of the snow, and Hillside’s first-ever full-week February winter break.  Please read closely for details; we have changed our calendar significantly to accommodate our recent snow days.

Breaking News:

We are delighted to announce our Summer Discovery Program 2012!

  • Dates:  Four, week-long day camps, from July 9 – August 3, 2012
  • Time: From 9:00 – 4:00 pm daily
  • Open to all youth (not just Hillside students), grades 5 – 9

Hillside’s Summer Discovery Program offers youth, grades 5 – 9, four weeks of opportunities to explore (wilderness near and far), design (theatrical sets), create (sculpture, visual media), cook (delicacies), duel (with sabres), act (on stage), and survive (the outdoors).  Please see our website for details.  Come join the fun!

Come see Hillside’s 5th & 6th Grade Players production of Twelfth Night, set in the 24th Century!

Join us as we travel back to the future for a unique evening celebrating one of Shakespeare’s great comedies.  Our heroine, Viola, finds herself shipwrecked on the planet of Illyria, where her adventures take her, disguised as a man, to the court of the noble Duke Orsino.  Will she ever find her lost twin brother Sebastian?  Will the Duke win the hand of the beauteous Countess Olivia?  Will the Countess’ roguish Uncle Toby amend his drunken ways?  Will Toby con exuberant-but-dim Sir Andrew out of his inheritance? All these questions and more will be answered in our sci-fi version ofTwelfth Night. New February 5th/6th Twelfth Night performance schedule: Sunday, February 12:  Mandatory Dress Rehearsal, 1:00 – 5:30 pm Tuesday, February 14:  Morning Performance, 10:00 am All students arrive at 9:00 am. Wednesday, February 15:  Evening Performance:  $10 ticket 6:30 pm performers’ call 7:30 pm performance Thursday, February 16:  Grades 5-6 only:  NO SCHOOL during school day Evening Performance: $10 ticket 6:30 pm performers’ call 7:30 pm performance Friday, February 17: Grades 5-6 only:NO SCHOOL (Play recovery day)

Out of State Emergency Contact:  Jim Chartier

In the event of an emergency in which cell phone and land lines are down in this region, we ask that parents contact Jim Chartier, Karen’s brother, who lives in Phoenix, Arizona to get messages to us.  His phone numbers are (602) 505-3111 (cell phone) and (602) 953-3856 (landline).  In an emergency or disaster, he will serve as the central hub for communication between Hillside students and staff and our Hillside families.  Please note that between cell phones, texts can often get through when calls cannot; always try both methods on a cell phone if one method does not succeed.

Other February (and March… and April… and May!) Dates:

Monday, February 6: Sign Up Date for Grades 9 – 11, March 5 Conferences

Please contact Leslie Howells at Leslie@hillsidesc.org to make your appointment for the upcoming Monday, March 5, conferences by Monday, February 6.  Conferences begin at 3:30 pm. Every effort is given to accommodate parents’ wishes in scheduling; please contact Leslie early if you need a specific time and she will do her best schedule your conferences accordingly.

Wednesday, February 8:  Animation/Filmmaking Club Make-Up for January 18

With the addition of this Wednesday, February 8, make-up date, Animation Club will run three consecutive Wednesdays2/1, 2/8, and 2/15.

Saturday, February 11:  Open House 1:00 – 3:00 pm

Please help spread the word about our snow make-up Open House to your friends, neighbors and co-workers.  We have our fingers crossed, and are counting on better weather this time!

Saturday, February 11:  Poetry Out Loud

We applaud the performances of all Hillside’s participants in the Poetry Out Loud competition, including Alex Nolan, Matthew Coopersmith, and Paul Pfenning.  Come support Paul Pfenning, Hillside’s representative at the regional poetry recitation competition.  The Puget Sound Regional Finals will be held Saturday, February 11, 2012 at the Tacoma Public Library, 1102 Tacoma Ave S, Tacoma, WA 98402.  Directions to the library can be found here All students, teachers, families, and friends are invited, and there is no charge to attend.  Here is the February 11 schedule for our Regional Final.

Puget Sound Regional Final B

1:00               Students arrive & check in 1:15 – 1:45   Student workshop/ warm up on stage 2:00               Program begins 2:10 – 3:00   Round One 3:00 – 3:10   Short Break 3:10 – 4:00   Second Round 4:00 – 4:30   Presentation of awards, Q&A with participating students Two students will be selected from Puget Sound Regional Final B to participate in the State Final held on Saturday, March 10, 1-5 pm (the National Final is from Sunday to Tuesday, May 13-15, in Washington, D. C.).   For the regional competition, each student must memorize and perform two poems from the Poetry Out Loud anthology.  For more information about this national competition, go to the Poetry Out Loud site .

Monday, February 13: Sign Up Date for Grades 7 – 8, March 13 Conferences

Please contact Leslie Howells at LeslieHowells@hillsidesc.org to make your appointment for the upcoming Monday, March 12, conferences by Monday, February 13.  Conferences begin at 3:30 pm.  Every effort is given to accommodate parents’ wishes in scheduling; please contact Leslie early if you need a specific time and she will do her best to schedule your conferences accordingly.

Thursday, February 16:  Running Start Meeting Cancelled (date change TBA)

Monday, February 20 – Friday, February 24:  Mid-Winter Break

Tuesday, February 28:  Fencing Term II begins: 3:00 – 4:30 pm

Please note:  Extending the date of the drama production two weeks means that Fencing resumes two weeks later.  The new price for Term II is $160 due to the reduced number of classes.

Wednesday, February 29:  Happy Leap Year!

Thursday, March 1:  Informational Meeting for Incoming 7th Grade, 7 – 8:00pm

Monday, March 5:  Grades 9 – 11, Parent-Student-Teacher Conferences

Tuesday, March 6:  Grade 5 & 6 Parent Student Teacher Conferences Cancelled

Please note:  The later date of our Twelfth Night performance, combined with our mid-February week-long winter break, results in our intermediate grade students’ having fewer than two weeks of regular classes before the previously proposed March 6 conference date.  Make-up conferences for the March 6 conference date will be held in early April, TBA.  Parents may contact individual teachers at any time and arrange a meeting if they have specific concerns.

Friday, March 9, Regular School Day

Our Snow Make-Up Days have been changed to regular school days to make             up for the class time lost during our snowstorm.

Monday, March 12:  Grades 7 – 8, Parent-Student-Teacher Conferences

Monday, April 9 – Friday, April 13:  Spring Break

Monday, May 14, Regular School Day

Our Snow Make-Up Days have been changed to regular school days to make-up for the class time lost during our snowstorm.

Monday, May 28:  Memorial Day

Please note additional changes:

Block Calendar Changes:

Thursday, February 2:  Block IIC: 7 – 8 Washington State History 9 – 12 Western Civilization from 1600 Friday, March 2:  Block IIIA: 7 – 8 American Literature and Composition 9 – Art 10 – 11 Biology (Lab) Monday, March 26:  Block IIIB: 7 – 8 General Science 9 – 11 Western Civilization from 1600 Tuesday, April 24:  Block IIIC: 7 – 8 Art 9 – 11 Literary Criticism Wednesday, May 16:  Spring Electives Begin

Happy February!

A Hillside Update from Kael

Snow began falling on Sunday up at Hillside, continued through Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and built up to six enchanting inches on Tuesday.  Today (Wednesday the 18th) the powder has been piling up all day to well over a foot.  After my morning run (yes, I’m crazy), I took an afternoon stroll through the woods to catch some photos of them—and as Frost says, they “were lovely, dark, and deep”.

The cedars and hemlocks drape down in tents around their trunks, white cushions soften the benches in the garden and the chair in the field, icicles fringe the gym roof, and the mossy maples reach like green and white candelabras for the sky.  I’m very tempted to take my sled and hike high up Cougar Mountain to slide a mile and a half down its trails—but there might be school tomorrow, and I have “miles to go before I sleep”.  I hope to see you soon.

Warm blessings to you all.


Washington State History Field Trip Inspires!

In November, we mentioned that the Washington State History Class took a field trip to meet Suguamish Tribal Elder, Ed Carriere on Bainbridge Island. You can click on that post here.  The following painted boxes were inspired by that trip and the Native American Art that they saw.

January Bulletin – 2012

Welcome to the New Year! This winter we’re hoping for crisp, cold days — and NO snow to impede attendance at school and at our many exciting events. Please read on for details!

Tuesday, January 3:

School recommences at 9:00 am for a full day of classes.

January 5 – January 27: Block IIB

Grades 7 & 8 General Science Grades 9-11 Literary Criticism

Saturday, January 7:

Intermediate Winter Drama Set-Up, 11:00 am – 3:00 pm

Thursday, January 12:

Grades 9 – 12 ‘Poetry Out Loud’ Competition at Hillside, 3:30 pm. Come listen to recitations of great poetry and cheer on the students!

Saturday, January 14:

Intermediate Winter Drama Set Painting, 12:00-4:00 pm

Monday, January 16:

NO SCHOOL: Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Friday, January 20:

Teachers’ Meeting: 3:30 – 5:00 pm

Saturday, January 21:

Open House for Prospective Families, 1:00 – 3:00 pm Our last Open House was a success and we look forward to sharing our program with even more families at this one. Help yourself to the Open House post card announcements in the basket on the hall table, and share them with your friends and co-workers and at your neighborhood gathering places. You, our satisfied and supportive families, are our best advertisers. We encourage you to spread the good news about Hillside School!

Sunday, January 29:

Twelfth Night Dress Rehearsal 1:00 – 5:00 pm (grades 5-6 attendance mandatory)

January 30 – February 17: Block IIC

Grades 7 & 8 Washington State History Grades 9-11 Western Civilization after 1600

Please note upcoming important February events:

Thursday, February 2:

5-6th grade class presents Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare, 7:30 pm

Friday, February 3:

5-6th grade class presents Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare, 7:30 pm

Tuesday, February 7:

Hillside Cavaliers Fencing Club sessions recommence for the Spring Term.

Opportunities For Student Volunteers


VIBES co-ordinator, Sue Hanlon, for Bellevue School District and she is looking for student volunteers.  If any students are interested in volunteer hours, the person to contact is Janet Smith smithj@bsd405.org at 425-456-4152. Contact information can also be found on the Bellevue School District website.  They are looking for students in 9th grade or older.