December Newsletter

Parent Social

Don’t wait until it is too late!  The parent social is this Friday, 8pm at Over Joy Bistro. TICKETS ARE ONLY AVAILABLE ON-LINE AND NOT AT THE DOOR. Share a few drinks with friends, show off your dance moves (if you are so inclined) but don’t bring the kids! Tickets are going fast at withrowparentsocial.eventbrite.com.

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Annual Giving Campaign

By now all of you should have received our Annual Giving Campaign letter. We had a fantastic year of fundraising last year and we are well poised to pay for our part of the school yard work, including a new running track and a tree island. We are waiting for the final quote and timeline from the contractors now. We did very well in raising money for a climber as well, which will follow the field work. This year we will be raising money to supplement the safety surface for the climber in addition to our usual “operating” costs (for example, arts, greening, STEM).

Please considering donating by using the secure Paypal donation (withrowhands.wordpress.com/ways-to-support/annual-giving-campaign/) or writing a cheque and dropping it off in the locked box at the office. Eagle-eyed parents noted that we referred to a form in our letter. This was a copy-and-paste relic from another era when we had tear-off forms for credit cards; apologies! Feel free to re-use the envelope we gave you to enclose your cheque.

Parenting Speaker Series

We had a great turnout at the Resilient Parenting Talk given by Withrow’s very own experts, Drs Afroze Anjum and Tayyab Rashid. We learned about how to promote growth mindsets in our children and paused for some self-reflection, which should lead to better parenting.

Not only was there plenty of food for thought, but we also were fortunate to have yummy pastries donated by COBS Breads. They are opening soon on the Danforth opposite the Music Hall, so please support them!

The next session will be in February (exact date TBD) and our topic is “Talking to Children about Dying, Death, and Grief.” Our speakers will be Andrea Warnick, Grief Counsellor and David Stark. This is an incredibly important and difficult topic that affects us all from the family pet, to grandparents, and tragic accidents that affect a family and community like our own Erica Stark.

Lost and Found

Please drop by the Bain entrance Lost and Found to find any missing mitts, hats and sweaters. Next clean out date is Friday, December 11th!

Social Media

You like us on Facebook, right? Click here if you want to. We are also on Twitter, so follow us here. These forums are great for reminders and announcements but obviously they are very public. Not great for asking for carpool help or if someone has a babysitter recommendation.

We’ve partnered with 18Blocks.com on a pilot project to connect Withrow parents using an online neighbourhood noticeboard. While 18Blocks currently offers a public board for locals to connect in Riverdale-Leslieville, this is a private, invitation-only board specifically for our school community. It’s a resource you an use to share information with school parents who live nearby and share many of the same interests.
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Here are some of the ways you can use the board to connect in our neighbourhood:
1. Organize fundraisers, garage sales, street hockey, car pools, book clubs
2. Share recipes, a ride, referrals, babysitting resources, school reminders
3.  Find lost pets, missing keys, tutors, dog walkers
4. Buy, Swap, Sell with a neighbour close by
Here is the link to this private board if you are interested in joining.

Visit from Nanjing delegation

Withrow was on display last week as a large group of principals, vice-principals and teachers came to visit us from Nanjing. The delegates were very impressed with all the students. They also liked our toques.

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Withrow Cares

Withrow Cares is on this week! For Primaries and Juniors, please bring in non-perishable food items in support of Eastview Community Centre. Kindies, please refer to the green sheet that came home last week has a list of the families at Interval House.

Silent Auction update

It’s no joke! The 2016 Withrow Silent Auction will be back Friday, April 1, 2016. Planning is already underway. If you’re interested in helping on the committee, we’d love for you to join us.

A huge part of the success of past auctions has been the interesting and fun donations provided by parents in the Withrow community. Could your company provide a product or gift certificate? Could you part with Raptors, Leafs or TFC tickets? Do you have some knowledge or skill you could turn into a unique experience? Some of our favourite past experience donations include: a medical kit and lesson from a doctor for a child, sewing lessons, stand-up paddle boarding lessons, and an evening of skeet shooting at a private club.

To volunteer with the committee, or if you can make a donation, please contact withrowauction@gmail.com.

Community News

Wroxeter Avenue Refugee Resettlement Project

The following is not to take away from the Withrow Cares donations. The plight of the refugees from Syria has been resting heavily in many people’s minds. Withrow parents, Alan and Sara Jones, are part of a privately sponsored group to bring over a Syrian family. They are accepting donations of gift cards, household items like towels, linens, etc. In the words of another Withrow parent, Jenny Do Forno:

[We] have been discussing the Syrian crisis and I want to find a way to engage him and help him understand that he doesn’t have to be afraid and that he can be a helper in this world.

Riverdale Share

Sunday, December 6th 3pm Danforth Music Hall

The Riverdale Share Concert is a diverse holiday celebration held every December in Toronto’s vibrant Riverdale Neighbourhood. Join us for our 23rd Annual show to enjoy an afternoon of festive music, comedy, dance and a visit from Santa! This 100% volunteer-run organization plans to once again raise over $30,000 and truckloads of food to support organizations in our community helping families. Tickets are $20 and are available at The Big Carrot, 348 Danforth; Treasure Island Toys, 581 Danforth, It’s My Party, 423 Danforth Ave or online at ticketmaster.ca. For more info visit www.riverdaleshare.com or follow @RiverdaleShare.

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Carols by Candlelight

Friday, December 18th 6:30pm-7:30pm at Withrow Park

Join us at the Withrow Park fire pit for our second annual Carols by Candlelight event. Storytelling, carol singing and holiday cheer abounds.

Brought to you by the Friends of Withrow Park and our Friends Brian Ross and Dean DaSilva weknowhouses.ca

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