PTA Newsletter - November 26, 2018
Mon, Nov 26 10:05pm
Frank Otis Elementary

November 2018
November 26th-30th
-Fall Teacher Conferences with Parents/Guardians
(Kinder dismissal at 11:40am; Grades 1-5 dismissal at 12:30pm)
November 26th-December 3rd
-Book Fair! 7:50am-4:00pm, Media Center
November 26th, Monday
-Coffee Talk with Principal Harris, 8:30-8:45am, Blacktop (round green tables)
November 28th, Wednesday
-Equity & Inclusion Meeting, 6:00pm, Location TBD
November 30th, Friday
-School Spirit Day! "Culture Day" theme
-Last Day to Claim Items from Lost & Found
-Book Fair Hot Cocoa Night, Media Center, 6-8pm

December 2018
December 5th, Wednesday
-Lincoln Middle School Information Night, 6:30-8:00pm, Multi-Use Room
December 3rd-13th
-Used Sneaker Drive
December 7th, Friday
-Walk-A-Thon, 8:30-10:30am, Blacktop/Krusi Park
-Bake Sale hosted by 5th Graders, 2:50-3:30pm, Blacktop (round green tables)
December 17th, Monday
-Coffee Talk with Principal Harris, 8:30-8:45am, Blacktop (round green tables)
December 18th-20th, Tuesday through Thursday
-Gingerbread Shoppe (classroom teachers will schedule date)
December 19th, Wednesday
-Lincoln Middle School Information Night, 6:30-8:00pm, Multi-Use Room
December 21st, Friday
-Spirit Day! "Fancy Friday" theme
December 24th-January 4th
-Winter Break - NO SCHOOL

Dear Families,
I hope that you all had a wonderful fall break. I am looking forward to seeing all of the little Owls back at school.
Family/Teacher Conferences
All AUSD elementary schools are on a modified schedule from November 26th-November 30th for Family/Teacher Conferences. Kindergarten students will be released at 11:40am and 1st through 5th grade students will be released at 12:30pm. Supervised lunch will not be available; however, students may pick up school lunch in the MPR.
Families should have received information regarding scheduling a teacher conference. If not, please make sure to contact your child's teacher as soon as possible. Conferences are an essential part of the school experience, as they provide an opportunity for families and teachers to work together to develop academic and social-emotional goals for the year. During the conference, your teacher will discuss your child's progress, show you samples of your child's work, and go over the report card. As you prepare for your conference, some questions you may want to consider are:
  1. Is my child performing at grade level?
  2. What skills and knowledge is my child expected to master this year?
  3. How does my student interact with peers?
  4. Does my child participate in class discussions?
  5. What part of the curriculum does my child like most? Least?
  6. What can I do to stay more involved in my child's academic progress?
Have a wonderful week!
~Principal Harris
Be Safe, Be Kind, Be Your Best

Rescheduled to Friday, December 7th 
Please continue to collect Walk-A-Thon donations! Donations can be made via cash, check or online.  
  • Please make all checks payable to "Otis PTA"
  • For ONLINE DONATIONS, you must indicate the name of your student's teacher. Please let friends and family know this information so there aren't any delays in processing donations. 
DONATE NOW by clicking HERE

We still need volunteers from 8:00am to 10:30am to set up the courses, punch lap cards and monitor the course while students are walking to ensure our students stay on track and are safe at all times. We need LOTS of volunteers to make this a successful and fun event for our students.
VOLUNTEER at Walk-A-Thon by signing up HERE 
QUESTIONS? Contact Chris Ernst, Walk-A-Thon Chair, at 


Wednesday, November 28
Location TBD
Join us for the next Equity & Inclusion Committee Meeting on Wednesday, November 28 from 6-7pm. We will start planning for Lunar New Year and Black History Month. Free childcare in Room 102. 


The deadline to submit a Mini-Grant has been extended to Friday, November 30. Teachers, staff, students and family members can apply for PTA funds to support classroom learning or enrichment activities that take place outside of the classroom. Grants range from $20-$500. See the application form for more details.
Grant awards will be announced at the January 2019 PTA meeting. Questions? Contact Jenny Beck, PTA President.


As the holiday gift-giving season quickly approaches, please remember that when you use Amazon Smile to make purchases, a percentage of your purchase will go back to Otis Elementary. Just go to and select Otis Elementary PTA as your charitable organization. Click HERE for more information. Tell your friends and family too! Thank you and happy shopping!

The Fall Scholastic Book Fair is here! 
From Monday, November 26 through Monday, December 3, the media center will be open from 7:50am to 4:00pm for students, parents, family, staff and teachers to purchase new books. Don't forget to stop by and check out the selection and pick up a book or two to read over the holiday break.  If you have some time to help Ms. Chapman with book sales or keeping the shelves stocked, please stop by the Media Center and sign up to volunteer.
Also join Ms. Chapman on Friday, November 30 from 6-8pm for Hot Cocoa Night in the Media Center! Enjoy a cup of cocoa while browsing the book selection and mingling with Otis friends. 


IMPORTANT NOTICE: Last Call for Lost & Found! 
All items left in the Lost & Found after 1pm on Friday, November 30 will be donated to a local charity. Please take a look while you're at school for teacher conferences to find any missing items. All items are located in the main school hallway. 


December 3rd-13th
Has you child outgrown or worn through another pair of shoes? Do you have piles of athletic shoes at home that you want to get rid of? Well, now's the time! Beginning on December 3, the Go Green Committee will collect your old, unwanted, worn out ATHLETIC SHOES ONLY (no dress shoes, sandals, flip flops, or shoes with cleats). 
Look for the bin outside the main school office. All shoes will be donated to Nike's Grind Project where Nike reuses old, worn out shoes and turns them into playgrounds, running tracks and more! 


Turn In Your Box Top$! 
This is the last week to turn in Box Top$! Collection containers are in every classroom or the school office. The class that collects the most Box Top$ will earn a reward of their choice worth up to $50, and more importantly, will have their class added to the Box Top$ trophy! We aim to earn $1,000 each year through Box Top$ so please bring yours in! 

Claire Legas, Box Top$ Coordinator



Otis Owls are doing a great job at getting items into the Terracycle bins. 

Don't forget that the following items can be recycled in these yellow bins around school to earn money for Otis: 
  • Foil-lined BAR wrappers- such as Cliff Bars, Z Bars, Power Bars, Lara Bars, Nutrigrain Bars, Fig Bars, etc.
    • NOT chip bags, seaweed snacks, or other foil-lined items.
  • Honest Kids juice pouches, or Capri Sun juice pouches, with straws!
    • NOT juice boxes.
  • ANY pouch with a twist off lid (GoGo Squeeze pouches, Earth's Best baby food pouches, Mott's Apple Sauce pouches, etc.) 
Parents - You can recycle the following items from home: 
  • Empty toothpaste tubes, cereal bag liners, and personal care products like empty chapstick tubes, mascara and lipstick tubes, and deodorant sticks!

Many thanks to Kristan LaVietes and her crew of brave students who have been sorting through all of the recycled items so we can keep them out of landfills and turn them in to Terracycle for cash. Students interested in helping with this effort can report to the AIK portable each Wednesday after school for 15-20 minutes. 
Thank you for participating and GO GREEN!         


To Order a yearbook for the 2018-19 school year, visit:
Enter CODE: 32685M  All orders due by February 1, 2019
WE NEED PICTURES!! We need all families to submit pictures of school events and activities like the Alphabet Rockers, Walk & Roll To School, Summer Scholars, Carnival, Soul Shoppe Assemblies, Field Trips, Art Docent, STEAM lab, and even recess. Submitting photos is easy! Just click on the link and start uploading!

Thank you!


Otis t-shirt, sweatshirt and water bottle Pre-Sale Orders have arrived! 
If you placed a pre-sale shirt order, please pick your items up from All Good Living, 2332 Alameda Ave, Monday-Saturday between 10am-5pm, (510) 522-6288.
We still have a limited supply of shirts, sweatshirts and water bottles available for purchase here. Get them while supplies last - last chance for the 2018/19 school year!



Get entered to win a date night to Chez Panisse by shopping on Good Eggs!

It’s the last week of the Frank Otis Elementary School fundraiser (it ends on Nov. 30!)! And if you shop on Good Eggs this week, you’ll not only help our school meet our goal, but you’ll get entered to win a date night to Chez Panisse! If you’re new to the fundraiser, it’s not too late to join. Just visit, enter the code OTISGOODEGGS, and place an order. You can get produce, meat and fish, baked goods, easy dinner kits, and more delivered same-day. No subscription required and delivery is free any time you spend $60. 




It's time to start thinking about middle school. If you're interested in exploring options around the island, below are dates for scheduled information sessions for Lincoln, Wood, Junior Jets, AOA, Bay Farm Middle School, and ACLC, or click HERE for more information.
Lincoln Middle School
- Wednesday, 12/5
- Wednesday, 12/19
Each Parent/Guardian Information Night is from 6:30-8:00pm in the multi-use room.
Beginning in January 2019, every Tuesday and Thursday, LMS will be offering tours for you and your student. We have several of the same tours set up with a focus on 6th grade which include a brief overview of the subjects offered to 6th graders led by our Math, Science, CORE, and Elective teachers, along with a brief tour of the school. We have a tour focused on 7th and 8th grade subject areas also led by teachers and a brief student led tour of the school. There are two tours focused on electives and clubs offered at Lincoln in which you will hear from the elective teachers and given a brief tour by our Outdoor Development docents/students. Tour sign-ups will be available on the LMS website in December.
Junior Jets 
- Tuesday, 12/11
- Thursday, 1/10
Each Information Nights will start at 6:30pm in the Junior Jets office. Look for signage directing you (it is on the far right as you are facing the school).
Wood Middle School
- Wednesday, 1/9
Each Information Night is from 6:00-7:00pm in the Media Center.  
- Thursday, 1/17 
- Thursday, 2/7 
Each presentation is from 6:00-7:00pm in the gym. Parents and students are welcome. Click HERE for more information.

- Thursday, 12/13
- Wednesday, 1/9
Each presentation is in the Multi-Purpose Room from 6:30-7:30pm. They are intended for parents and their incoming students. Click HERE for more information.


Click HERE to sign up to receive newsletters and other important information from AUSD. 
  • Next Board of Education Meeting: November 27 at 6:30pm (Island High School).
  • Next High School Consolidation Committee Meeting: December 4 at 6:30pm (Island High School).   
  • Click HERE for the agendas.
AUSD is offering a wide variety of parent enrichment speakers, workshops and events. See below for more information or click HERE
Screenagers Film
Paden Elementary MPR/GYM
February 7, 2019 |7:00- 8:30 p.m.
Event Information | Official Trailer

Parent University at Lincoln Middle School 
Spring Session: 
February 13, 2018 6:00-8:30 p.m.
School Smarts
Sessions begin week of January 15, 2019 at Ruby Bridges, Paden, Earhart and Haight elementary schools. Details coming soon! Schools alternate hosting the program every other year. If your school is not listed, you are still invited to attend your neighboring schools' program.


The Alameda Elks are running the Americanism Essay Contest again this year. All 5th-8th graders are invited to submit an essay for a cash prize. Last year, an Otis owl won the prize! This year's topic is "What Makes You Proud of America." Please encourage your child to put together 300 words and see how they do! 
Deadline to enter is December 15. See contest details and application packet here.



Alameda Girls Softball Association
AGSA is the only youth sports league in Alameda with a primary focus on development of girls in sports.  

Registration for the 2019 Spring Recreation season is open from NOW through January 6. Early bird registration ends November 30. Returning players should register NOW! Added bonus is that all games are played at the fields at Krusi Park!
For more information and to register, go to


Did you know Otis is part of the Sports Basement Basementeer program? You can get 10% off your purchase and 10% goes to Otis too! 
Become a Basementeer here!

OTIS 101
Ever wonder what a room parent does, what "MPR" means, how the money from PTA fundraising events is used, or what's what at Otis?  If so, you will find this guide to be a helpful resource and reference guide.  It's also posted on the school website at for easy reference.  Please take a few minutes to read Otis 101 so you're up to speed!

Questions?  Please contact any member of the PTA Executive Board for more information. 
To contact Otis PTA Outlook, please send an e-mail to, or hit reply to this newsletter. These emails will go directly to the Editor's personal in-box. 

Thank you, 
Outlook Editor