Weekly Newsletter for TCGIS Families

 September 29, 2011

in this issue
:: Upcoming Dates
:: Oct. 4 Picture Day Information
:: Scrip Fundraiser
:: Introducing Two New Amity Interns
:: Cereal Boxes Needed for Martinstag
:: After School Activities Begin Next Week
:: TCGIS Lice Policy
:: Outreach to Prospective Families
:: Auflauf Cook-off and Community Dinner Tickets on Sale
:: Chinook Books for Sale
Annika Fjelstad

Annika Fjelstad, TCGIS Director


Dear Families,

Each year each public school is required by the State of Minnesota to post publically an annual report summarizing accomplishments of the past year and goals going forward. It is a broad picture of the school's functioning including a look at academics, finances and operations. Our annual report can be found here. I encourage you to take a glimpse for a deeper understanding of how we are growing not only in numbers, but programmatically, and some of the ways we hope to deepen and strengthen what we do.

Although it seems we've just begun settling into this school year, the season is also already upon us in the school office to look ahead to building next year's Kindergarten class. Ideally, we would like to strengthen our school financially and programmatically by adding a third Kindergarten. We would like to receive 150 Kindergarten applications with a goal of starting next year with 72 Kindergarten students. It will take a more deliberate outreach to find enough families to meet this goal. Our most effective recruiting tool is word of mouth. Please see below for ways to spread the word about TCGIS!

It's a sad, but true fact that dealing with lice is just part of being an elementary school. Please check your child carefully and read our school lice policy below.


Monika Schröder is an author of historical fiction for middle school readers. She will visit the school on October 27th and spend some time with 6th and 7th graders discussing her childrens novels. Although her novels are written in English, several are set in Germany. She will discuss her work in German. She will also be featured doing a reading at the Red Balloon Bookstore on October 28th at 7:00 PM. You can learn more about her and her books here


Find us on Facebook

Annika Signature


Annika Fjelstad  

651-492-7106, ext. 103

[email protected] 



UpcomingDatesUpcoming Dates
Save the Date  Calendar
4 - 6:30 PM, PTO Meeting
6 - 8:15 AM, Tour for Prosp
ective Families
12 - 4 PM, Information Session for Prospective  Families
13 - 8:15 AM, Tour for Prospective Families 
14 - 8 AM, Kaffeeklatsch
14 - 6 PM, PTO Auflauf Cook-Off  
20 & 21 - NO SCHOOL
- 8:15 AM, Tour for Prospective Families 
27 - 6:30 PM, School Board Meeting
28 - 8 AM, Kaffeeklatsch
30 - 2 PM, Information Session for Prospective Families

3 & 4 -
Parent Teacher Conferences- PM Only (school open)
6:30 PM- School Board Meeting


For the complete school calendar, click here.

Picture Day!
School pictures on October 4

Today we sent home order forms (envelopes) in your child's backpack for you to review and chose the photo package you would like to order. We were able to negotiate very reasonable prices, including a package priced as low as $11. Please include your payment by check or cash and have your child bring in the envelope in for picture day, October 4, or choose the convenient online payment option by clicking here.


We are in need of 4 volunteers who can help the photographers by getting the classes ready, making sure envelopes are marked correctly, checking names off of lists, etc. Available shifts are 8:30am to 10:45am and 10:45am to 1:00pm. If you are willing to help, please contact Stefanie Berres at [email protected]. Volunteers will receive vouchers for complimentary photo packages (first come, first serve).


We are excited to announce that we chose Enstrom Studios for this year's school photos. For more information about the company, please visit their website. In addition, we have samples of photos on display at school.

Scrip Fundraiser
Next order due October 4

Hopefully everyone has eased into the school year and established their routines. Our Scrip program routine is right back on track, with orders due on the first Tuesday of the month (October 4th!)


Scrip is a great way to support TCGIS by simply purchasing gift cards to make your day to day purchases. Every retailer gives a percentage of your purchase back to the school. It's like walking into the gas station & having them give $1 of your $25 purchase directly to TCGIS! The percentages are even higher at hundreds of restaurants and other retailers (amazon.com, Target, Best Buy, Home Depot, Cub, Kohl's, Papa Murphy's - most anyplace you can think of!)


If you're thinking about trying out the Scrip program, you'll want to start by setting up a family account by clicking here. When prompted, please enter TCGIS's enrollment code, 4CA2AE9714L14, so we get credit for your order. Place the order online, and deliver your check to the front desk by the due date.  


Again, orders are due on the first Tuesday of each month, and will be ready for pickup by the second Wednesday.If you have any questions, email Deb Helmel at [email protected] 

Amity Interns 

Stephanie Reinhard and Andreas Zeilnhofer    

Amity- Stephanie

Our next intern is Stephanie Reinhard. She is in Frau Cooper's first grade classroom. She is staying with the Coleman family. Stephanie studies English and philosophy at the Ruhr-University Bochum and hopes to become a teacher. She loves musicals, reading, playing the piano, and meeting with friends. She loves pets, especially her dog, Blake. She will be spending a semester in Norway, so she thinks Minnesota will get her ready for the cold winters!


Amity- Andreas

Andreas Zeilnhofer is in Frau Goodman's 7th grade class. He will be staying with the Huebschs. He is currently studying educational science, English, business administration, and economics at the University of Passau. He likes to read, teach, play outdoor sports, and go out.

Cereal Boxes Needed for Art Class
Send in boxes for Martinstag celebration

Please start bringing your cereal boxes and round cheese and oatmeal boxes to school!  We will be needing them soon for the elementary students' art classes, where we will be making lanterns for our Martinstag celebration in early November.  You can send them to school with your child, or bring them up to the Art room.  Thank you!
Decreasing Fumes in the Parking Lot
Helping TCGIS stay green!

We'd like to encourage parents to help us decrease exhaust fumes in the parking lot by turning off your cars instead of idling while waiting for your child. Thank you!
Community Event: GAI Kaffeestube

The Germanic-American Institute's Kaffeestube Authentic European Breakfast Café has opened again! Enjoy a delicious, hearty and authentic German breakfast buffet while you read the paper, connect with friends and colleagues, catch-up on e-mail, and visit the GAI library. Check out our expanded collection of children's German materials! At just $6 per plate, it is the best brunch deal in the Twin Cities! Reservations not required.  


The details:
Saturday mornings, 9am-12pm
September 24 - December 10*
*closed November 26 for Thanksgiving holiday
301 Summit Avenue
Saint Paul MN 55102   


For more info, call 651.222.7027 or click here

After School Activities
Classes begin next week

After School Activities begin next week for students who have registered. Please pick up your child promptly after classes are done. On Wednesdays, pick up is at 3:45; on all other days, pick up is at 4:30. Pick up for all after school activity classes, including those held at the YMCA, will be in the TCGIS entryway. You do not need to come into the classrooms to pick up your child.
LicePolicyTCGIS Lice Policy
Please check you child carefully

Keeping lice infestations under control is a responsibility of the entire community. Our school lice policy is that if nits or lice are found the child may not return to the classroom until s/he is treated and checked. The child's head may be treated according to an approach found preferable by the family. The child must be nit free as verified by school staff to return to the classroom. Even if nits have been killed by treatment, they must be removed.


You will receive notification if lice are found within your child's classroom. Although we do checks at school, we do not have the capacity to check each child carefully. For not only your sake, but for the sake of the community, please check your child carefully. Also, once a child has been nit free, you must continue to monitor for up to 21 days to catch any possible reoccurrence.  


Resources regarding lice at TCGIS: 

ProspectiveFamiliesOutreach to Prospective Families
Help us spread the word about TCGIS!

We need your help to reach our goal of adding a third Kindergarten class next year. Our most effective recruiting tool is word of mouth. Your happy, fluent and engaged children are our best advertizing. There are several ways you can help us:

  1. Talk to your neighbors and friends with prospective Kindergarteners about our program.
  2. Go to the Minnesota Parent Education Fair at Como Park Zoo on October 15th between 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM with your child wearing German Immersion School T-shirts.  If you are able to do this please notify us here, so that we can organize a group.
  3. If you have a 4 year old at home, fill out your enrollment form now. Knowing how many spots will be filled by siblings will help us know how many new families must be found. You are guaranteed admittance, but you still need to fill out the form.  

We also have a few spots in this year's Kindergarten. If you know neighbors or friends who may be unhappy with their Kindergarten experience, it is not too late to transfer to TCGIS. Please tell them about this opportunity.

TCGIS Auflauf Cook-off and Community Dinner Tickets on Sale Now! 
Friday, October 14, 6pm-8pm


Get out the casserole 9-22 auflaufdishes!It's time to compete in the 3rd Annual Auflauf Cook-Off.   

The dish to beat is Lisa Friedman's Kugel, which won top honors by both our judges and attendees. 


Our celebrity judges will choose winners in three categories: German Traditional, American Traditional, and the Rest of the World. Once the judging gets going, we will all join in a community dinner. Don't forget to take notes and vote for your favorite in the People's Choice. 


This year we are introducing the "Non-Judgmental" Dessert Buffet - for those who enjoy cooking but not the competition. 


Cook-off and Dessert Buffet participants both receive a reduced ticket price. Tickets are on sale now. Space is limited! The Cook-off will be at the Salvation Army Community Center at 2727 Central Avenue NE, Minneapolis.


Click here for more details and competitor info. We have many volunteer opportunities, so please check-out VolunteerSpot to sign-up!  

Don't Forget to Buy Your Chinook Book!
Available at the front deak
Chinook Book Cover
Buy your Chinook Book at the front desk for $20 cash or check payable to TCGIS PTO. You save on purchases around town at local and sustainable businesses, and the TCGIS PTO keeps half the proceeds ($10 from each book) to support our school. Plus, this year's Chinook Book features 300 additional mobile coupons via the new Chinook Book mobile app included with each book. Questions? Contact Kate Olson at 
[email protected]gmail.com or 651-216-8680.
Lost and Found Overflowing!
Please help us identify and return your child's belongings

Our lost and found is already overflowing with jackets and sweaters of all shapes and sizes. To prevent a huge stockpile from building up as the year progresses, we'd ask you to do a few things to help us get things returned to you:

1) Please write your child's name (at least last name) in their sweaters, mittens, hats and jackets whenever possible and appropriate.
2) Come in to the office at drop-off or pick-up and take a look at the lost and found collection whenever you can. If you don't recognize your children's things, perhaps you'll recognize your children's friend's things. 

Until the weather becomes inclement, we'll try to put the lost and found on display at least once a week (usually Fridays) on the playground at pick-up time. Please take a moment then to look through.

Since the nearby Dugsi Academy uses the same space for recess, we surmise that some of the found items belong to their students and will be collaborating with their staff to manage the lost and found.

Educating Children for Informed and Active World Citizenship


The Elternbrief is published electronically Thursdays throughout the school-year and on an as needed basis at other times. Submissions are due by 3 PM on Tuesdays. Content printed at the discretion of the TCGIS administration.