A Weekly Update for Families
In this issue...
MACS Charter School Day at the Capitol
TCGIS Clothing Orders
Sixth Grade Performance
Please Return Overdue Library Books
Vienna Community Arts
Spring Break in Grand Marais
Recess and Cold Weather Policy
Attention aRtiSTs
German Heritage Night with the Timberwolves
Carnival of Cultures
ElternbriefFebruary  9, 2011

Dear Families,


Performing Arts Publicity If you didn't get a chance yet to admire our Performing Arts program in action in a video clip published by the Star Tribune on Tuesday, February 8th, please click Tango clip.  And, click here to see a scan of the article that appeared in print.  We're grateful for the well deserved attention for an exciting program.


February 11th Carnival of Cultures Logistics You can come and see it live yourselves this Friday at 6:00 PM (NOT 6:30 as falsely published in some places) for our K-4 Carnival of Cultures performance and at 7:20 for the 5th and 6th grade program. In order to get everybody lined up in costumes and oriented to a new performance space we ask parents to drop of K-4th graders between 5:15 and 5:30 at St. Thomas More School at Summit and Lexington.  5th and 6th grade families are of course more than welcome to attend the K-4 performance.  If you choose to only come for the 5-6 performance, your teachers will greet you outside the door of the performance hall to ensure no disruptions to the earlier performance.  K-4 families are of course also more than welcome to join the latter performance.  It's fun to see what your kids will grow into.  We also respect that bedtimes and family obligations may make it a better choice for you to leave.  This turn around will be tight and we will need the cooperation of everyone to ensure a smooth transition and allow the second half of the program to start promptly. 


Note when you arrive that there is a school and a church at this intersection.  The program is in the school, which is located at 1065 Lexington, whereas the church has the address 1079 Lexington.   


K-4 students will do a dress rehearsal from 9:00 to 10:00 at school on Friday morning.  5-6 students will do their dress rehearsal at 1:15. 


We know it's a challenge to coordinate rest, costumes, dinner and rush hour to make it all work.  We appreciate your working on this and making decisions to accommodate the needs of your family.  We will offer afterschool activities that day to provide the planned-on childcare for those that are counting on it.  We respect the decisions of families that are able to help kids get home for a proper rest and refuel by skipping afterschool activities.  We've done our best to keep costume ideas simple, but know that still not everyone has the right color shoes and pants.  Please know that your child's presence and enthusiasm are the most important elements. 


Charter School Day at the Capitol on March 1st.  Further information is available below about attending this event.  Charter schools in general and ours in particular will benefit from some legislative support around issues of both funding and authorizer requirements.  It's very important that our legislators learn how these issues matter to your family.  If you register, both we and lobbyists from Minnesota Association of Charter Schools will provide you further information on specific initiatives.  If you have flexibility in your schedule to attend, we'd love your presence as part of a delegation from TCGIS.  Please let me know if you're able to attend. 


Can your support of Minnesota Public Radio benefit your school?  I suspect there are a few in our community who will choose to support Minnesota Public Radio during their upcoming fund drive.  If you're doing this anyway, but really don't need another coffee cup or other joining gift, you could consider accepting as a premium a day sponsorship which you could in turn donate to the school.  As a regular MPR listener, I've noticed that a lot of schools publicize their Open Houses on public radio.  We could do this as well, if we had a day sponsorship or two.  You may also get a message as a thank-you gift when you contribute $500 (or pool donations to total $500).  A written message by the contributor is broadcast two separate times in a given time period on the date of their choice. It is aired on the News & Information Service, Classical Music Service or 89.3 The Current, whichever is preferred by the member. If you are interested in becoming a day sponsor, or if you want to request your message please contact the Member Benefits Team, 800-228-7123.


Enrollment forms due February 15  Enrollment forms for for the 2011-2012 school year for new students only, including new Kindergarteners, are due by February 15.  Remind your friends and neighbors that Tuesday is the deadline to be entered in the lottery.  Siblings, of course, have priority.


Warm Winter Clothes  See below for our updated winter weather policy.  As we strive to get kids outdoors for at least a little while every day, it is an absolute requirement that kids come to school with hats, boots, mittens, snow pants and jackets.  We cannot send them out without the appropriate gear, and we do not have enough to lend to every student who forgets it.  If kids don't go outside for recess, both the kids and teachers don't get their hard-earned breaks!         


Parent Teacher Conferences  Please remember to sign up for parent-teacher conferences on February 17th and 18th.  More information here. 


Frau Annika Fjelstad
Twin Cities German Immersion School

[email protected]

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

 Maskenball -- A Night at the OscarsTickets 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.)


If you plan on donating an auction item or group event please note that the deadline is this Friday, February 4.


Please send the group event form to Molly Foster at [email protected] and the auction donation form to Michelle Sheire @ [email protected] or drop-off in the front office.



MACS Charter School Day at the Capitol: March 1

On Tuesday, March 1st, 2011 the Minnesota Association of Charter Schools is organizing the 5th Annual Charter School Day at the Capitol to promote the 2011 legislative agenda and to share the benefits of a public charter school education with legislators.  Please come if you can make it.  For more information click here.

TCGIS Clothing Orders 


*TCGIS clothing orders will be available for pick up on February 22nd in the school office.*

Sixth Grade Performance

Dear Parents:


The 6th graders have put together a play. It's called Nathan the Wise (Nathan der Weise), written by Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, a German playwright and philosopher from the 18th century. The performance will take place on Feb 11th (Fri) at the St. Thomas More Catholic Community (on intersection Lexington and Summit Ave.)


Nathan the Wise takes place in the 12th century Palestine. Under all the twists and turns in the plot, and fighting about different religions, the story is about friendship and tolerance between different cultures. Although it is a piece of "old" literature we are impressed how modern and up-to-date it is. It is about to be an exciting play.


What you will see on stage is only the top of the iceberg. Everybody in our class is working hard on this play. As well as actors we also have a designer team: Background Designers, Costume Designers, Advertisers etc.


You are welcome to come and see the outcome of our work. See you on February 11th at 7:20pm at the Concert Hall of St. Thomas More Catholic School. We hope you will enjoy it.


Thank you,


Kimberlee Brandt on behalf of the 6th Grade

Please return overdue library books!  

It's a good time to return books to the TCGIS library, as the library committee would like to get all overdue materials returned by mid-February.  Please look for books your child has checked out, put them in your child's backpack, and remind the kids to return them to either the cart outside the library or bring them back on their designated library day. 

Vienna Community Arts 


Springbreak brings the opportunity for students to participate in the musical theatre workshop offered by Vienna Community Arts.

Flyers and registration forms are available in the school office.

Registration deadline is Feb. 18th, limited to 15 students.

651 773 9525 for info.


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!


On Saturday February 5th the Jugendchor , Konzertchor and the Volksfestsingers. Under the direction of Herbert Engelmayer from Vienna Community Arts will perform for the "Royal Wedding".

The ceremony takes place in Ryce Park at 2 pm and is part of the St.Paul Winter Carnival celebration.


Thank You,

Vielen Dank

Herbert & Nancy

Vienna Community Arts

651 773 9525


Spring Break in Grand Marais

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

Recess and Cold Weather Policy

Dear TCGIS Parents, Guardians and Staff,

We would like to announce a revised recess cancellation policy. We have introduced a 20-minute shortened recess for when temperatures are cold, but not cold enough to cancel recess outright.

Our policy is based on a windchill chart National Weather Service: http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ssd/html/windchil.htm

  • We will have regular recess (30 minutes) until temperatures are below -5 F or a windchill  -12 F, whichever comes first.
  • Recess will be shortened to 20 minutes if the temperature is between -12 and -5 F or a windchill between -22 and -12 F, whichever comes first.
  • Recess will happen indoors at any temperature below -12 F or a windchill below -22 F, whichever comes first.

This policy has been adopted with student and staff safety in mind, as well as the need for outdoor recess. The policy assumes that children are dressed appropriately for winter weather. Students without proper winter attire will be outfitted or will spend recess inside doing alternative activities.

Questions and comments can be referred to Annika Fjelstad or Hunter Goetzman

Thank you,


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.  Please fill out and submit this form with your piece.

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

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.  Click here to see the official invitation! 

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!

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].