A Weekly Update for Families
In this issue...
Spring Break in Grand Marais
Follow the Yellow Brick Road
TCGIS Clothing Sale is Here
The Swedish American Chamber of Commerce warmly welcomes you...
Attention aRtiSTs
German Heritage Night with the Timberwolves
Fund Raising: Group Events
Upcoming Performances
Don't Miss This German Cultural Event
ElternbriefJanuary 19, 2011

Dear Families,


-         Upcoming Dates

-         Report Cards

-         Parent-Teacher

-         Conference registration

-         State of the School

-         February 11th Performance

-         Request for Volunteers

-         Morning Kindergarten pick-up


Upcoming Dates

-       Friday, January 28th 5:00 PM Parent Teacher Conference             Registration Link opens

-       Monday, January 31st Report cards go home with students

-         Thursday, February 3rd 6:30 PM State of the School

-         February 11th 6:00 PM and 7:20 Carnival of Cultures Performance

-         Thursday, February 17th NORMAL SCHOOL DAY, Parent Teacher Conferences after school

-         Friday, February 18th NO SCHOOL


Report Cards   Teachers have completed report cards.  They are being formatted and assembled in Powerschool, our data management system.  Report cards will be sent home in envelopes with your child on Monday, January 31st.  Please check in with your child on Monday to ensure that you receive the report card. It will be in a manila envelope which will include:

-         Grade report from power school

-         Report Card Supplement with a checklist of social and behavioral skills.

-         A slip to sign, date, and return to your child's teacher to acknowledge receipt


Conference Registration  Parent-teacher conferences will be held after school on February 17th and during the day on February 18th.  A link to register online will be made available on Friday January 28th at 5:00 PM.  Registration information available here. 


 A couple things to note on conference registration:

         Please register for conferences with your child's classroom teacher. 

·         5th grade parents will register as a block for meetings with Herr Goetzmann, Herr Koester and Frau Stephens.  If a 5th or 6th grade student is studying Spanish you can register in addition for a conference with Senora Mueller. 

·         We apologize that we are not able to offer conferences with the English teacher, Ms. Stephens, for 6th grade at this time. She has 70 students.  In the fall she was not able to meet with 4th grade parents.

·         We encourage students in grades 1 - 6 to accompany their parents to conferences. 


State of the School

On February 3rd, you will receive updates from key leaders at the school on where we are and where we're heading.  Board Chair Kimberly Kompel, Board Treasurer, Renee Moelders, Director, Annika Fjelstad and newly appointed Curriculum Coordinator for the Middle School, Katie Stephens will each present updates on their work and visions for the future.  We invite you to join us, ask questions, talk with each other and learn more about our school as an organization. 


February 11th  Carnival of Cultures Performance

We very much hope that you can join us for one or both of the presentations of work done in Performance Arts classes this year. 

The schedule for the evening is:

-         5:30 Drop-off for students K - 4

-         6:00 - 7:00 K-4th grade Performance

-         7:00 5th and 6th grade Drop-off  (tentative)

-         7:20 - 8:05 5th and 6th grade Performance

The performance is a celebration of song and dance from around the world.  We have an ambitious evening and need support from parents both before and during the event to pull it off.  Please note volunteer options below. 


Volunteer Thanks/ Volunteer Options

Our parent satisfaction survey from the past two years shows that 80% of our parents volunteer in some capacity or another.   A smaller percentage of parents donate hours and hours and hours of time each week.   The successful program that we have is a direct result of countless hours both on the scene and behind the scenes where parents have donated their time, energy, money and professional expertise.  THANK YOU.   At this time the PTO, the Board, the Facilities Committee, the Amity Committee, the Technology Committee, the Library Committee, the Tour Committee among others are all active with important projects.


We need help from parents on two upcoming dates: February 3rd and February 11th. This is a great opportunity for some new faces of people who haven't overbooked themselves on committees.  Please sign up at the front desk for these tasks if you're available:


February 3rd  State of the School 6:30

Set up chairs

Anytime after school

Take down chairs

7:30 PM

Greet parents and give out nametags

6:00 PM


February 11th Carnival of Cultures Performance

Volunteer Coordinator

In advance

Make signs to orient families about where to go at St. Thomas More

In advance

Help classroom teacher with class during performance


Help coordinate simple costumes for class

In advance and evening of

Set up chairs


Take down chairs


Sound system support

In advance and evening of


It will be an exciting opportunity to get the entire community together to celebrate their Performing Arts work.  We will need the help of many hands to help the evening go well.  Thanks in advance for your support. 


Morning Kindergarten Pick Up The pick up time for half day kindergartners is between 11:00 and 11:15.  Teachers are responsible for your children until you pick them up.  This is also the only time they have available to eat lunch and do prep.   Please be respectful of your child's teachers' time by arriving punctually.  Thank you!


Thanks for all you do to support your children and the school as a whole.


Frau Annika Fjelstad
Twin Cities German Immersion School

[email protected]

State of the School
February 3rd

1745 University Avenue
St. Paul, Minnesota 55104

6:30 PM

Carnival of Cultures
February 11th

St. Thomas More Catholic Community

6:30 PM

Parent Teacher Conferences
February 17th and 18th

1745 University Avenue
St. Paul, Minnesota 55104

Spring Break in Grand Marais

Click here to learn more about a trip to Grand Marais over TCGIS spring break!

Follow the Yellow Brick Road


To the cafeteria at TCGIS where Vienna Community Arts will offer a unique production of "OZ!".

This musical theatre workshop will be held during Spring Break, from Monday, March 21 to Thursday, March 24, 2011, with a final showcase for parents and friends.  The workshop is from 9:00am to 1:00 and is open to K through 6th graders. Enrollment is limited to 15 students. 

No experience necessary!  VCA takes an educational approach to theatre using this as a way to build confidence, acquire new skills, and build relationships.  No auditions.  Every student has a role.

Tuition is $125.00 for the week.  Call Nancy or Herbert at 651-773-9525 for more info.  Watch for our flyer!


TCGIS Clothing Sale is Here  

The 2011 TCGIS Clothing Sale is now open online! Check it out to see the selection of colors and styles on student, staff, and parent models.  There are also some samples hanging just outside the school lobby in the hallway by the front desk. 

**We are now offering the girl's white tee with pink rings and lettering in women's sizes.**


Through the online TCGIS PTO store, you may pay one of three ways:

  1. Order online and then pay by cash or check at school in the PTO Drop Box (write clothing sale on memo line)
  2. Pay using your PayPal account,
  3. Pay with your regular credit card through the PayPal website (no PayPal account required).  

If you prefer not to order online, just pick up an order form from the front desk; fill out the form and put it and your payment into the PTO Drop Box. 


Orders must be submitted by Friday, January 28th.  If you have any questions regarding the clothing sale please contact Gina Vader (or call 763-432-2274).

       Tshirt Sample      

Maskenball -- A Night at the Oscars™ Tickets Now on Sale

You have much more than "127 Hours" to figure out what to wear and to hire a babysitter to make sure that "The Kids Are All Right." So show your "True Grit" and buy your Maskenball tickets today! Maskenball promises to be a fun-filled night of "The Social Network(ing)".

Maskenball is set for Saturday, February 26, from 7:00 PM - Midnight at the Dancers Studio in St. Paul. Besides a night of fun and glamour, it's a great opportunity to raise a tremendous amount of money for our school!

Tickets are now on sale, buy yours today before the price goes up! Tickets are $45 per person now through February 17. Beginning February 18 tickets are $55 each. Staff tickets are $35 each (staff may purchase two tickets at this rate.)

For more information on how to donate to the auction, wall of wine or any other of the exciting activities, click here.



The Swedish American Chamber of Commerce warmly welcomes you...


...to join us for a Very Special European

"FIRST TUESDAY" business networking meeting

along with our special co-hosts


The German-American Chamber of Commerce

The French-American Chamber of Commerce

The Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce


complimentary appetizers and cash bar


business card drawing at 6:30 for gift cards


Tuesday February 1st, 2011, 5:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Firelake Grill House & Cocktail Bar

The Radisson Hotel

35 South 7th Street, Minneapolis, MN


(612) 339-9766


** free parking in the underground ramp, ask your server for a voucher


Click here to see the flier! 

Attention aRtiSTs

We would like to invite you to participate in the First Annual TCGIS Family Art Show...to coincide with the First Annual Talent Show (sponsored by the Vienna Community Arts) on Sunday, March 6th at the Germanic American Institute, from 11 to 3 p.m.

We will have 3 categories: PAINTING/DRAWING, PHOTOGRAPHY and SCULPTURE.  All 2 dimensional artwork must be either framed OR matted, and sculptural pieces must be free-standing.  All art submissions must be made by no later than February 28th.  (ALL artwork will be returned!)

We invite TCGIS community members of ALL ages and abilities to participate!  This art display will not be a "contest" but a celebration of our visual arts talents.  If you are a student, parent, or other family member or even friend, please think about making a masterpiece to submit for the show!  Individual or group works invited.

Contact Mickey Jurewicz-Gruenheid (612.759.2996 or [email protected]) with any questions!

German Heritage Night with the Timberwolves


First Annual German Heritage Night with the Minnesota Timberwolves


This special evening will be a chance to cheer for former NBA MVP and Germany's own Dirk Nowitzki!


It will be a fun and exciting evening of Timberwolves basketball and German culture.


A portion of the proceeds will go to benefit the Twin Cities German Immersion School. 


WHEN: Monday, March 7, 2011 at 7:00pm

WHERE: Target Center

PRICE: $36 lower level seats ($40 regular) or $12 upper level seats ($15 regular)


German Heritage Night includes:

  • Early entry into the arena to watch the Mavericks warm-up
  • A possible meet and greet with Dirk Nowitzki after the game (not guaranteed and subject to the approval and discretion of the Dallas Mavericks
  • A post-game photo for the entire group
  • Also, the first 40 kids to sign up get to high-five the players as they run onto the court before the game!
  • A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Twin Cities German Immersion School 

Click here for free child with adult purchase order form (no donation to TCGIS) 

Click here for discounted tickets (donation to TCGIS)

For more information contact Jacob Widerschein,
widerschein(at)timberwolves.com, 612.673.1282

Fund Raising: Group Events

This year as part of Maskenball Silent Auction, gatherings and community events are a crucial part of our fundraising effort.  For those of you new to TCGIS, these donated events offer a means of both raising money for our school and strengthening our community.  Simply, they're organized get-togethers donated by families at the school.  They can be as simple as a dinner party or a game night, or they can be more involved. 


Some ideas are listed below:

  • Wine and cheese tasting
  • Summer picnic
  • Family bowling night
  • Waffle breakfast
  • Ice skating and hot chocolate
  • Adult bunco game night (a fun dice game)

We need people who are willing to host events.  Host as a family or talk with other parents in your child's class or friends from other grades to plan an events togethers.  These events can be large or small, elaborate or simple.  They can be geared toward children, adults, or families.  You get to choose.


The donor family provides everything needed for the gathering to take place such as materials, supplies and venue.  The expenses associated with the gathering are a charitable tax deductible.   


Please consider supporting our school by sponsoring a group event. To organize an event, just complete the Group Events Form. Forms will also be available at the front desk at school. Turn in forms directly to Molly Foster or leave in the PTO box at the front desk. Your help in making group events and all aspects of the Maskenball Silent auction a success is great appreciated!


If you have any questions, please contact Molly Foster at


or [email protected].


Upcoming Performances


Karneval der Kulturen/Carnival of Cultures


February 11th, Friday

We would like to invite all of you to our Carnival of Cultures that will take place at 6:30pm in the school concert hall of St. Thomas More Catholic Community, St. Paul.

Through this performance we would like to unite a Carnival atmosphere with the idea that our world is so beautiful and colorful because it is so different and unique.  Every grade is preparing its part. You are welcome to join our Carnival of Cultures!

Don't Miss This German Cultural Event!
Who: Germanic - American Institute

What: Winterfest mit Euro Dance Party

Where: 301 Summit Avenue, St. Paul

When: January 29, 2011

Time: 3pm - Midnight

Price: Free and open to the public

Come celebrate the St. Paul Winter Carnival German-style. January in Minnesota is the perfect time to bundle up and head outside to enjoy the revelry of Karneval and a mug (or two!) of warm Glühwein


3-7pm Winterfest Tent Party

Keep warm under the tent or join your friends around the bonfire outside on the GAI grounds.
Festivities to include:


· Live music from the band Dale Dahmen and the Beats


· Draft beer, Glühwein, and freshly grilled bratwurst


· Performances by the Spielmannzug Tanzguard and Karnveval games


· Weiberfastnacht celebration. Ladies come made-up as a hag and enjoy the emasculating tradition of cutting the men's ties. Prizes for the best Altweib (old woman) costume.

7pm-12am Euro Dance Party

The party moves into the Ratskeller for more music and dancing. D.J. Ben will be spinning Retro 70s and 80s Europop and classic Karneval party music.


Click here to see the flyer!

Elternbrief Submissions

Please have all articles pertinent to the TCGIS community submitted to the Elternbrief by Monday at 9 am prior to Wednesday publication. Submissions may be sent to [email protected].