Originally delivered on 12/5/2019 4:00 pm

SUBJECT: Winter Concert, Spirit Day, & Cookies! - Discovery PTA Newsletter 12/5


December 5, 2019

Happy holidays, everyone! This will be our last PTA newsletter of 2019, so please read through for updates and reminders about December activities and important dates coming up in January. We wish you all a happy new year!

In This Issue:

  • Calendar of Upcoming Dates
  • Play Before Your Day is TOMORROW 12/6
  • Waste Free Lunch Challenge is 12/9-12/13
  • Discovery Voices Winter Concert on 12/11
  • Teacher of the Year: Your Help Needed
  • Calling All Bakers!
  • Discovery Spirit Day: Pajama Day 12/20
  • News from the Advisory Council on Instruction (ACI)
  • Reminder: Community Service Opportunities
  • Save the Date for the Discovery DJ Dance Party on 1/10



12/6 - Play Before Your Day, 8:30 am
12/11 - Early Release at 1:26 pm
Don't Forget - There's a camp for that!
12/11 - Discovery Voices Winter Concert, 7 pm
12/13 - Teacher of the Year Letter Deadline
12/19 - Teachers' Holiday Treat Station
12/20 - Discovery Spirit Day: PJ Day
1/8 - January ACI Meeting
1/10 - DJ Dance Party, 6:30 pm
2/29 - Discovery Speakeasy Auction

Check the PTA Calendar for more information.

Play Before Your Day is TOMORROW

After a brief hiatus, “Play Before Your Day” is back! Please join members of Discovery’s Health and Wellness Committee on Friday, December 6 at 8:30 on the “big” playground between the slide door (#6) and the orange playground equipment (behind the gym) or on the field (BYOB - Bring your own ball!)

This is a family-oriented opportunity for our students to get some extra play to start their day and get some of those “wiggles” out! There will also be coffee in Ms. Klanderman’s 1st grade classroom (room 128) for the adults that will be accessible from the outside.

Please note, this is not a drop-off event and parents are required to stay with their children until the doors open for the day. In the event of inclement weather, we will move inside the gym.

Waste Free Lunch Challenge: Dec 9-13

Please join us in participating in our first Waste Free Lunch Challenge to see how much waste we can reduce in our Dining Commons for one week from December 9-13. We encourage you to participate by packing a lunch that requires no trash or recycling- you can do this by using reusable containers and bags, cloth napkins, whole fruits and vegetables, reusable silverware, and drink containers. Students who buy lunch can participate by bringing in their own silverware and drink containers for the week and only taking what they will eat when going through the lunch line.

Our goal is to reduce the amount of waste by 10% compared to the previous week. This helps us to fulfill our goal of working towards reducing our overall waste and consumption throughout the year. We will assess how successful we were and plan for our next waste free lunch week in the new year.

Join us for the Discovery Voices Winter Concert on Dec 11

Join us for an evening of music celebrating this wonderful time of year! 4th and 5th Grade Choir Students will perform in the Discovery Voices Winter Concert “Winter Around the World” on Wednesday, December 11, at 7 pm in the Discovery Gymnasium.  

 Teacher of the Year: Your Help Needed

We are so proud to announce that Kate Annamreddy was nominated by her colleagues as Discovery’s Teacher of the Year! Kate has been an Art Teacher at Discovery for four years. She co-leads Eco-Action with Ms. Wine. In addition, she is on the APS County Sustainability Committee and Discovery’s Sustainability Committee. She is a wonderful asset to Discovery and we would love nothing more than to have her honored as the APS Teacher of the Year.

Here is how you can help. We welcome both student and parent letters of support. Please address letters to Superintendent Johnson and drop them in the main office. All letters are needed by Friday, December 13th. 

Calling All Bakers!

To show appreciation for Discovery staff during the holiday season, the PTA is providing a holiday treat station on Thursday, December 19. We need your help to supply 80 dozen (that's 960!) delicious baked goods for staff to bring home and share with family/friends! Please ensure all cookies, brownies etc are nut free, and drop them off in the front office on Wednesday, December 18. Sign up now! 

Additionally, the PTA is once again sponsoring the staff New Year's Party at Whitlow's in January. Thank you to all that you do to help make these events possible.

Discovery Spirit Day : Dec 20 is Pajama Day

On Friday, December 20th, send your explorers to school in their pajamas for the last spirit day of 2019!

News from the Advisory Council on Instruction (ACI)

The Advisory Council on Instruction (ACI) is made up of representatives from each school and certain community organizations to assist in reviewing the system-wide curriculum and instructional program and in developing recommendations for improvement. 

In the December Meetingg: Early Childhood & Equity and Excellence Advisory Committees’ reported. Visit ACI's website for more info as well as links to presentations made and available resources.

Looking Ahead, our January 8th ACI Meeting with be an input and feedback meeting with APS and school board representatives to discuss what is going well and what may need improvement in APS schools. If you would like to share major concerns, comments, and/or compliments in relation to how Discovery is meeting the teaching and learning needs of students, please email Carrie Simkin by January 5th at crn3t@virginia.edu.

Topics to Consider: Core Curriculum, Technology, School/Community/Parent Partnerships, APS School Budget, things that are going well in any/all of the above categories or elsewhere. What should APS make sure it keeps doing? Discovery’s feedback will be shared with the larger APS community.

Reminder: Community Service Opportunities

Clothesline Coat Drive - Now through Dec 13
It sure got cold fast this year! As you're cleaning out the closets, please consider donating children's coats, hats, and gloves in good, clean condition to Clothesline. There are two collections boxes at Discovery, one inside the front door and one by the side door near the slide. Please send in your coats before the coat drive ends on December 13th.

Gift Card Drive - Dec 2 through 20
This holiday season, please consider purchasing a few gift cards in $20 increments for our gift card drive. Cards to local grocery stores, gas stations, etc. will help make the holidays easier for Discovery families in need. Drop off the cards in the front office anytime before December 20th.

Save the Date for the Discovery DJ Dance Party on Jan 10


On Friday, January 10th the PTA will host the 5th Annual DJ Dance Party. All grade levels are invited to dance the night away. The price of admission is $0!! That's right, it's free!

Please make sure that your Explorer eats before the event because we will not be selling any food. Also note, this is not a drop off event - all children must be accompanied by an adult.




To submit community news for publication in the Discovery PTA newsletter, please email a short blurb to newsletter@discoverypta.org.


We are currently offering sponsorship opportunities on the PTA website.  Becoming a sponsor allows you to advertise your business at an event, on our website, or in our newsletter while supporting our PTA. If you know anyone that is looking to do a little more marketing of their business or may be interested in becoming a sponsor, please let us know at fundraising@discoverypta.org


Use AmazonSmile for your Holiday Shopping! 

Support Discovery Elementary School PTA while you get your holiday shopping done! Link your Amazon account to AmazonSmile (instructions below under the AmazonSmile logo).

Now Android users can participate as well: simply follow these instructions to turn on AmazonSmile and start generating donations.

  • If you have the latest version of the Amazon Shopping App, open the App on your Android device.
  • View Settings and select AmazonSmile.
  • Follow the in-App instructions to complete the process.

Grocery Cards-one of our biggest fundraisers! 

Harris Teeter
Link your Harris Teeter VIC Card to Discovery.  Visit harristeeter.com/together-in-education to sign up.  Please note that you need to link your account annually, and credit is given for purchases of Harris Teeter branded merchandise from August through May of each school year.

Please register your Giant cards to benefit Discovery. Go to Giant's website, click on Savings & Rewards, then "A+ School Rewards." Discovery is school #40035.

Amazon Smile

Link your Amazon account to Amazon Smile, and Discovery will receive 0.5% cash back on all eligible purchases.  Visit smile.amazon.com, sign into your Amazon account, and link to Discovery Elementary School PTA.  Please note that in order for Discovery to receive credit for your purchases, you must access your account and make the purchase via smile.amazon.com in a browser... not the Amazon App.  As of August 2019, Discovery has generated nearly $2500 through this program!


Box Tops

Physical Box Tops can be turned into the main office.  Box Tops also has a new App that allows you to photograph your receipt and immediately receive credit for Box Top labeled merchandise.



Discovery Elementary PTA
5241 N. 36th St.
Arlington, VA 22207