The Stallion Scoop: 29Oct21

The Stallion Scoop: 29Oct21
Posted on 10/29/2021
stallion scoop




Each month we focus more closely on one trait - this month's EPICER trait is: ENTHUSIASM.

  * I show a positive attitude at all times

  * I am eager to learn

  * I show active engagement throughout my day


#OneBookDCSD November 8-12, 2021

DCSD is hosting its first ever ONE BOOK event as a CELEBRATION of LITERACY & COMMUNITY, encouraging everyone to read and be inspired by the beautiful picture book by LeUyen Pham, Outside, Inside. See the flyer for events happening throughout the week!

Book Fair
Book Fair is Back! Set your calendars for the week of November 15 - 19. Our "Wild About Books" Fair opens with Donuts with Dads on Friday, November 12th with our late night hours on Tuesday, November 16th.


What’s Happening in Social Emotional Wellness?

This week in Social Emotional Wellness, we will be defining 6 core emotions. Understanding how all of our feelings are related to those emotions will help us to be better able to name how we are feeling. When we can name our feelings and emotions, our journey to regulating our nervous system begins.


Douglas County School District Counselors have teamed with Dr. Scott Cypers to create a video series to help parents understand how to help their children with Anxiety.  This series will be ongoing throughout the remainder of the school year and a new video will be released every few weeks.  These 20-30 minute video videos are designed to provide parents with an understanding of anxiety and provide some actionable tools to help their children.  Dr. Cypers is a nationally recognized expert on child and adolescent anxiety and is the director of stress and anxiety at Johnson Depression Center.
Here is the link to the first video: Understanding Your Brain and How Anxiety Fits Into the Picture
On November 2 at 6:00pm Dr. Cypers will host a live zoom session for any parent that would like to get more information after watching the video.  Please log in to get your questions answered in real time and speak with Dr. Cypers.

Here is that link:

Safe 2 Tell Colorado

Do you know how to report a concern that threatens you, your friends, your family or your community?  Safe 2 Tell Colorado is an anonymous reporting tool for parents and students.  There are 3 ways to make an anonymous report – via website, app, or phone call.   

Classroom guidance lessons

In Kindergarten, we began the year by discussing feelings about beginning Kindergarten while relating to Mr. Fish from “Pout Pout Fish Goes to School”. 

Students have also been introduced to basic mindfulness concepts and are learning various techniques to calm their body and brains (breathing, glitter jar, muscle relaxation).  Using the “Alphabreaths” book, students are introduced to 2 new animal breaths each week.  The breaths are reinforced with practice and activities. 

In 1st grade, I read “The Little Engine That Could”.  We discussed characteristics and experiences related to perseverance and schoolwork.    

In 2nd grade, I read “The Bad Seed” by Jory John.  Students then identified different thoughts and emotions in the story and were able to discuss whether the character demonstrated positive or negative thinking.

In 3rd grade, our lesson celebrated our unique self.  I read “Ish” and we created or own unique Ish projects using our unique thumbprint.

In 4th grade, our guidance lesson was about building relationships within the classroom community.  Students learned about the researched behaviors of geese and applied their migrating behaviors to building relationships within the classroom.

In 5th and 6th grade, we discussed the complexities of mental health and taking care of oneself.  We also talked about Simone Biles and the decisions she made during the summer Olympics.

These students were also presented information about Safe 2 Tell.  Students learned how they can access this tool if they encountered an unsafe situation.  All students were encouraged to seek help from a trusted adult first. 

As schools and parents remain flexible during uncertain times, your child may not be as agreeable to change.  News reports and changes in daily routines may be adding to your child’s anxiety.  Check out this article from Children’s Hospital Colorado for tips to help your family.  In addition, here is another article on how to create a routine/schedule to ease the impact from changes.

Parent Articles

How parents can combat the negative effects of social media on kids

Family Resources

Weekly snack/food bags provided by Parker Task Force – If your family is interested in having a bag of snacks/food sent home in their student’s backpack weekly, please fill out this brief form.

Families with housing instability

Universal Free Meal Benefits



The Principal Chronicles continues....(Fall Break Edition)

It has been a little while since I have had a good story to tell as I've been spending the majority of my time here on things that are decidedly not funny. Having said that, buckle up, I have a few stories to share about my trip to the Dominican Republic over fall break. 

Due to COVID, I had a ton of trips planned that were canceled so I accumulated tons of vacation and flight credits that I needed to use up so I booked a trip to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic for my daughter and me. So on the Friday before break my daughter, me, and 60,000 of our closest friends all headed out to the airport for our vacation. Since the DR is so far away, and there aren't any direct flights, we had to stay the night in North Carolina before we were able to fly down. Essentially, this meant we flew into Charlotte around 10 PM, got to the hotel at 11 PM, and then turned around and left said hotel at 4:30 AM. Completing this task with a 14 year old was certainly not easy. 

Once we arrived in Punta Cana we set out for our hotel which was the Hard Rock all-inclusive. I picked that place because (according to my travel agent) it was the most teenager friendly resort in Punta Cana that was all-inclusive. The hotel was massive and that isn't even an exaggeration. If we were to walk from the lobby to the beach it took us around 15 - 20 minutes and it was all hotel and pools. Our hotel had 13 pools, which is a ridiculous amount of pools. One of the first things that stuck out to us was there were very few Americans staying at the Hard Rock. Not that it is a big deal but I just thought that was interesting. Plus the largest group of people not from South/Central America were from Russia. Who knew Russians traveled to the DR when they wanted to vacation? The other thing that stuck out was that very few people spoke English. Again not that big of a deal but it became more challenging when we figured out the Spanish that I was taught in High School, and the Spanish I used as a teacher and Admin in previous schools, was not the same type of Spanish used in the DR. In fact 90% of the time I spoke to a hotel worker in Spanish the response I received was like nothing I have ever heard before. Certainly made things interesting to say the least. 

A few days in we took our first excursion off the resort. Our destination was the tropical island of Sonora. It was billed as a private island with crystal clear water. Since it was a ways away, this was supposed to be an 8 hour tour (cue Gilligan's Island theme music). We hopped on the bus at 6:50 AM despite the protests of my daughter. Since our hotel was the furthest away, we were picked up first. From there, we went along and picked up more members of our tour group. Along the way we repeatedly had to stop and wait at the different hotels because apparently no one knew exactly who was supposed to be on our bus and who wasn't. After waiting for about 45 minutes at two separate hotels, we stopped at a hotel to wait for the next set of people. We were not prepared in the least for what emerged from this hotel. 

When the door to our bus opened, 16 people from one traveling group all piled on. This is where our trip to Sonora Island went sideways and for the next 11 hours was not overly enjoyable. Once this group settled into their seats, they felt compelled to start yelling from the back of the bus (of course they sat in the back of the bus) to the tour operator that they needed drinks immediately and "to crank up the music". They were decidedly saddened to learn that no drinks were served on the bus despite it being roughly 8 AM and there wasn't any music on the bus. Undeterred, they produced their own speaker and smuggled alcohol. The rest of the bus I am sure were equally excited as I was to hear "it's five o'clock somewhere" at a sound decibel that I'm sure could be heard all over the entire island. After another hour of riding and listening to nearly every song associated with partying known to man, we arrived at our boat. Our tour operator told us it would be a 90-minute ride out to the island. What he neglected to tell us was that the boat was two batteries (one in each motor) that needed to be replaced and that those batteries would fail causing both motors to fail causing them to call for a rescue boat to come out and replace said batteries. Luckily it was a mere 45-minute delay getting to the island. This also gave our fun-loving group more chances to fill and then refill and then refill their cups. The group also insisted that the volume of the music get turned up to its full volume so they could utilize several poles on the boat to dance on, around, and even up. Kind of an amazing feat considering the overall size and girth of some of the group. 

When we arrived (finally) at the island, we were all starving. During the opening leg we discovered that our party group was in fact a large group of people who lived in the same town as Penn State University. How did we find this out you ask? They decided to share their football game chant with the rest of us on the tour by repeatedly yelling "WE ARE" followed by "PENN STATE" anytime they desired, which was far more frequent than you would think. From this moment on, that group was then referred to as the PSU Crew by the other members of the tour. Since we were so late arriving at the island we missed out on the majority of the "Island Buffet". We were left with potato salad, buttered noodles, and one chicken wing each. Somehow I don't think this was the cuisine the locals consume. This also didn't sit well with the PSU Crew since I don't think any of them met a meal they didn't consume. 

Since the PSU Crew didn't get their usual 10,000 calories for lunch they in turn decided to drink their lunch which made the normally peaceful island not very peaceful. While us, non-PSU Crew people sat on the beach, the actual PSU Crew set up shop in the beautiful clear water and set up a system where they would continually send a member of their party to the bar and bring back a tray full of drinks. If any of said drinks (in their plastic cups) fell into the water, they were left there floating for either the fish to consume or for a park worker to clean up. Also at this time, the PSU Crew felt that the use of clothes became optional, despite not a single other person on the entire island feeling the same way. To make matters worse, since the members of the PSU Crew had clearly been in Punta Cana for a while, their skin was very tan. This meant that any time an article of clothing was removed the corresponding skin below was highlighted even more due to the stark contrast in body parts that were normally covered with a bathing suit vs body parts that are not. 

Luckily, the PSU Crew was forced to exit the water and return their clothes to their proper locations due to the rain storm that rolled in, but the rain did little to dampen their beverage consumption. By now, it was becoming a modern miracle how so much liquid could be consumed without the constant need for a bathroom. Once the rain subsided, it was time to head back to our bus. This time we were to utilize a speed boat so we could swim in the "pristine starfish viewing area". Once we all piled onto the speedboat, the cramped quarters apparently made it nearly impossible for any member of the PSU Crew to move without falling on other members of the tour. On our arrival at the "pristine starfish viewing area", there was only one stated rule, "please do not pull the starfish out of the water". This rule was reviewed no less than 11 times prior to stopping the speedboat in the area. Apparently, the sheer volume of consumed liquid by the PSU Crew caused some hearing loss because as soon as they were in the water they tried to use multiple starfish as frisbees. Luckily they were saved by the other workers. 

Finally the tour was over and we were set to return to the bus and finally get back to our hotel. The ride back to the bus was fairly uneventful minus several of the PSU Crew losing their lunch over the side of the boat. When we pulled into the beach we all headed to the bus. Just before we were about to leave one of the PSU Crew stated that not all of their members were on the bus. Despite most of the members of the tour wanting to leave them there, the tour operator disembarked the bus along with the entire PSU Crew to search for their missing counterpart. An hour later, the missing person was discovered directly behind the bus shooting baskets completely oblivious to our impeding departure and the search party out looking for him. As we finally pulled out we were told by our tour operator that despite the late hour we were contractually obligated to stop at a "gift shop" prior to us being returned to our hotel. The PSU Crew was upset at this until they learned that drinks were served at said gift shop so their mood increased dramatically. When we arrived at the gift shop after listening to the exact same soundtrack we were all so lucky to hear on the way out, the PSU Crew piled out and loaded up on more liquid sensing that this might be their last opportunity to consume free beverages. An hour later, we were on the move and the non-PSU Crew members of the tour were getting restless as it was now past 7 PM and we had been on this tour for over 12 hours. As we plotted our mutiny, the tour operator told us that he has called for separate transport for us to get us home quicker. 

Finally, 13+ hours later we arrived back at our hotel with empty stomachs, ringing ear drums, and eyes that saw things that we will never be able to unsee. Ever. My daughter and I went straight to dinner, ate quickly, and then went to bed. Before we turned out the lights, we decided that we would never root for Penn State in anything ever again. 

That is it for this week's edition. Stay turned next week for Part 2 of our trip to Punta Cana. See you next time when the Principal Chronicles continues...



* Chaparral Trunk or Treat (flyer)
Discovery Education Information Night (flyer)
* Chaparral Wrestling Club (flyer)
join CUB SCOUTS (flyer)

* STEM CLUBS (flyer)
* Strategic Kids Chess (flyer)
* Strategic Kids Lego (flyer)
* TGA Tennis and Golf (flyer)

Tennis (Fridays) 8 weeks: 9/3, 9/10, 9/17, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15, 10/29, 11/5

Golf (Mondays) 8 weeks: 8/30, 9/13, 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, 10/25, 11/8

NONDISCRIMINATION NOTICE: The Douglas County School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, religion, national origin, ancestry, creed, age, marital status, genetic information, or physical characteristics, disability or need for special education services in admissions, access to, treatment of, or employment in educational programs or activities. The School District’s Compliance Officer is Ted Knight, Assistant Superintendent, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado, [email protected], 303-387-0067. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public.