July/Aug 2015                                                                  
Vol. 16 No.7                                                                                               View this content in your browser

Summer Camp Sizzles

Well, summer camp is restful and easy fun. We swim at Milam Park Pool and we eat in local restaurants. We test out new parks and we sometimes play with the water tables and bowls of water outside. We have done a lot of painting and spent one afternoon creating clay figures out of homemade play dough. We watch Clifford occasionally, we eat popcorn, and popsicles when we feel like a treat is called for.  One afternoon, the train set was built, the legos were in action and the dollhouse was an apartment building with everyone engaged in creating a city.

Summer camp is very different from the regular school year. We still go to the library and we still do art projects, but it all feels much like the summer afternoons when I was a kid. So far, we’ve eaten at Panera, Matthews, Maddio’s, Moe’s, Jason’s and I-Hop. Most of the time, everyone can find something on the menu to eat and we always keep the cost down to $4. We have learned how to stay seated at the table, how to handle the napkins, how to say “Thank you” after the meal, how to be a good sport if the foods on the plate are touching one another.

We’ve watched baby geese grow into teenager geese and we’ve seen a fisherman pull out brim and sunfish for his dinner. We know that a Great Blue Heron likes to stand across the lake from us at Cofer Park and that lots of families use the Henderson Playground.  Usually we do more field trips than we have done this year, but everyone is very content to play with the toys here and the heat and crowds make trips seem stressful. We still plan to go to the movies once and maybe to try a Gwinnett County water park. We will have to find new water spaces when the public pools close because public school is starting. Summer seems so short! 

Summer Calendar

  • July 20th—Tyra will be setting up the afterschool/camp space over at our new building. 
  • July 21st—moving day!  Peachtree Movers will be here at 9:00 a.m. and hopefully, everything will be in our new space by 3:00.  There will be no camp today due to safety concerns. 
  • August 19th Open House for families to come see our new space.
  • August 21st Last Day of Camp
  • August 26th First Day of School
  • September 7th—Labor Day—school closed



We have been looking for a more affordable space in the Tucker area for a year. We got serious about it in May and Debbie visited about 10 places to see what was out there. Luckily, we were referred to the 1st Baptist Church by Toni from Cofer Bros. Lumber company.
The church is right across the street from us and Pam Woodson, the church Administrator, is more than welcoming.  They seem a great fit for us and they manage a large building and have several other non-profits sharing their space, along with us. 

Our rent will be manageable and the utilities will be a little less. We will have the use of a gym and a place for meetings as well. We can share some of the cost of the Spanish, Art, and Music teachers with the preschool downstairs. We can already see some service projects that might be fun for the elementary kids.

This will be a wonderful chance to open us up to more community involvement with a more sustainable budget for the school, in general.  Our move in date is July 21. 

$25 off your Fees for Referrals 

If you refer anyone to the school and they enroll their child, you can earn $25 off your own tuition. Here is how to do it. Take a few flyers and give them to neighbors or relatives or stick them on bulletin boards at restaurants you visit. Put your name, in print, somewhere on the flyer, so I know who referred the person. Several years I had families whoearned free lunches for several months, doing this. Take a few flyers to work and leave them in the employee lounge. I’m going to put flyers on cars at the Farmer’s Market a couple times in August. We have one opening in the Kindergarten/1st grade group and two openings in each of the elementary classes. 

2 Simple Games for Little Kids

    At camp, we’ve been playing two simple games that keep everyone interested day after day.  First, “Connect Four” which is a game based on Tic Tac Toe that requires a plastic, stand-up frame and red and yellow checkers. This game requires the child to drop checkers down a column and work toward getting four in a row, while at the same time watching the opponent and blocking any move they make to get four lined up. The skills are simple ones—taking turns, planning ahead a couple of turns, being careful which columns you drop your checkers down, and being a good sport no matter who wins.  All of these skills are useful and learning simple strategy games help in learning math patterns, later. 

    Second, the card game of UNO has been popular with some of the 5/6 year olds. It requires planning ahead, taking turns, predicting what the opponent might have in their hand, matching colors and numbers, and eventually using strategy to get your opponents’ hands very full while using up your own cards. This calls for advanced thinking that will come in handy for any number of school skills that will come up—and it is fun. 

    These two games are fun and cheap and easy to take with you on vacation to entertain during rainy days. 



Eric Neumann spent a weekend working on the bus, re-taping tears in the seats, cleaning it up, and putting on vinyl signs that tell everyone who we are. The first time we drove it to the swimming pool this summer, several people said, “Oh, you got a new bus”—it was great to talk about it. Thank Eric when you see him. This was a lot of work. 

Using FACTS for tuition

Most of you will receive an e-mail from FACTS reminding you that your first payment will come out in August. Thefolks that haven‘t signed up for FACTS, yet, should get that started as I have to do some scheduling and you don’t want to have double payments in September. The on-line facts registration link is here.

They will want your checking account information and you will decide if you want it taken out on the 1st, 5th, or 10th of each month. You also must decide if you want to pay over 10 or 11 months. As a non-profit, we are instructed to avoid taking in payments in our office for on-going bills—IRS is watching—so we signed up for FACTS to meet this requirement. Before FACTS, we financed the tuition and the cost was much higher than the $43 they charge. Some folks have tried using Paypal, but their charges are quite high. FACTS seems to bethe cheapest, most user friendly system and they will take your credit card if you want to earn points. Please feel free to ask questions, if you need to.

Extracurriculars for 2015-2016

We will have Forefront Arts for Drama again this year, but they are planning some small plays for a slightly younger group this year—maybe some tall tales or myths and less singing and dancing. Anyone 6 and up is eligible.


We will have Spanish classes this year with Ms. Fretwell and she’s planning to offer to both the elementary kids and to the K/1 group.


Tennis and swimming will happen seasonally.


We are exploring a Yoga class with an organization that is interested in sharing space with us.


We are still working on gymnastics and art. Everything has to be affordable—sometimes we pay the whole tab and sometimes we split it with the families that are interested.  Piano lessons can happen, if anyone wants their child to start those this year. I think Matt might like to take on a few Kingfisher students. 


List for K/1

***a permanent, light-weight water bottle
***an easy-to-manage lunch box
***a couple easy-to-manage food keepers for the lunch box
***one small bottle of school glue
***one ream of white paper
***a box of large Ziploc bags (1 gallon-sized)
***a complete change of clothes, including socks
***a white t-shirt (for tie-dye day) that is slightly too big for your child 
***A ream of manuscript paper for a first grade child (this has lines on it to help learn to print)
***4 pocket folders for take home work and for portfolio work
***a box of Ticonderoga yellow pencils (the fancy ones with decorations don’t have a centered lead, so they don’t sharpen very well)
***a County Library Card if possible


List for 2/3/4

***a permanent, light-weight water bottle
***an easy-to-manage lunch box
***a couple easy-to-manage food keepers for the lunch box
***one ream of white paper
***a complete change of clothes, including socks
***a white t-shirt (for tie-dye day) that is slightly too big for your child 
***A ream of notebook paper (wide-rule)
***a zipper binder (not too heavy)
***4 pocket folders for take home work and for portfolio work
***a box of Ticonderoga yellow pencils (the fancy ones with decorations don’t have a centered lead, so they don’t sharpen very well)
***a DeKalb County library card in your child’s name 
***a flash drive

We don’t encourage books bags, unless you are dying to buy one, since we want the kids to be able to carry their own stuff and it’s hard to fit every thing into a book bag that a little guy could actually wear on his/her back.  We do suggest a “shopping-type” bag that could carry the lunchbox, artwork, etc. If it’s open at the top, stuff can hang out without having to be carried separately. 

Buy good solid sneakers, rather than Crocs—we walk a lot. 




Don't forget the easy ways to contribute to our school!
  1. Connect your Kroger card to us. We get $ for our art program that way.
  2. Remember to use and we'll get a percentage of the purchase!
  3. Show your Publix Partners in Eduction card when shopping there (pick up one at the school).
  4. Use our Kingfisher magnets on your car.
  5. Dump your junk mail and used paper into the recycling bin the parking lot
  6. Many more ideas listed on our site!
  7. Don't forget to LIKE us on FACEBOOK! Your pictures and comments welcome!
Kingfisher Academy does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, or gender. We do not discriminate in our scholarship practices, our enrichment programs, our hiring practices, or our enrollment procedures. 
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