South Side Newsletter – December 2021

For to us a child is born,
To us a son is given,
And the government will be upon his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.   
                                                        Isaiah 9:6  

What a special month December is…a time when we get to turn our focus to THE BEGINNING…when a child came to us, born of a young virgin in the city of Bethlehem. A few years ago my husband and I had the amazing privilege of going to Israel with Ray VanderLaan. As we walked up a rugged mountainside one day, I stopped and wept as I thought of what it would be like for my 15 year old daughter to make that same journey that Mary took from Nazareth to Bethlehem on foot, without the hiking gear that I had, and also pregnant with the King of Kings. I was overcome with emotion of what she must have felt physically, emotionally and spiritually. She was chosen to carry the “Son of the Most High God”–AMAZING!!! Only God could write a miraculous love story like that. It is this amazing baby, Jesus, whom we celebrate during this Christmas season. It is so fun to be able to spend this month with the students slowing down some of our normal pace of our instructional day to add activities that allow us to focus on our special Christmas gift, the birth of our Lord and Savior.

Wishing you all a blessed holiday season,

Erin

/ Announcements

Illness

We continue to use precautions at school such as diligent hand washing and wiping down of surfaces to keep everyone healthy and in school each day. Thanks for your help with this in monitoring your child for any symptoms he/she may be experiencing at home. If your child has the following symptoms, please keep them home:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever (over 100.3)
  • Fatigue and chills
  • Loss of taste and/or smell

Your child needs to be free of these symptoms for at least 24 hours before returning back to school. For fevers, your child must be fever free without the use of fever reducing medicine for 24 hours. If your child will not be present at school, please remember to let our office know at 616.820.3535, or by emailing jritsema@hollandchristian.org AND pmeiste@hollandchristian.org

Just a friendly reminder that the office is not able to administer medication without a doctor’s signature on a medical consent form. This includes both prescription and over the counter medication (Tylenol, ibuprofen, cough drops, ointment, etc.). You can find the medical forms needed on the Medical Information Page.

Christmas Project

This year we are partnering with Hand2Hand Ministries. Thousands of students in the West Michigan area are able to take home snack packs and supplemental food each weekend through the work of Hand2Hand Ministries and their partnership with local churches, schools, and businesses. Following their guidelines, we are going to provide Snack Packs for children. On Wednesday, December 15, all of our students will get busy packing Snack Packs, decorating small note cards, and filling boxes with these food supplies. Collection dates for the items listed below will be December 6-14.

If you would like your child to participate in donating food items, take a peek at the item assigned to your child’s class below, and send it along to school between December 6-14. Every class will have the opportunity to help pack the Snack Packs on December 15. We’re excited about this opportunity to talk with our students about God’s call for us to serve our neighbors, and by moving into action!

Items for each class to collect

  • (Any brand, Please try to get items that are at least 6 months away from expiration)
  • Fruit Snacks: Mrs. Brouwer & Mrs. Beckfort
  • Applesauce (pouches preferred): Mrs. Diekema & Mrs. Dreyer
  • Boxes of individually wrapped microwave popcorn packs: Mrs. Grassmid’s classes & Mrs. Baker
  • Individual snack size bags of Goldfish or Teddy Grahams: Mrs. Engbers & Ms. Hoezee
  • Quart-size Ziploc bags: Mrs. Strikwerda & Mrs. Timmer

Sledding Hill

Along with the snow comes recess time on the sledding hill! South Side will be providing sleds and has purchased them for the hill this year, so please do not bring your own sleds from home. This will allow us to keep the sleds stacked neat and tidy in the building, and give all students who want to a chance to sled!

From the Parent Board

The Parent Board would like to thank you for your support of our teachers and staff during the month of November! Your cards and tokens of appreciation brightened their days. Thank you!

Thank you also for your support of the Book Fair! Your participation was able to help us fund more books in the South Side and Pine Ridge libraries.

Parent Board Christmas Lunch

On December 14, staff will have the opportunity to gather together for a Christmas luncheon. In order for this to happen, we would like some volunteers. If you are willing to volunteer in your child’s classroom during lunch time, please reach out to the teacher and let them know. We need 1 parent per classroom. If you’re willing to bundle up and cover recess duty, please fill out the recess duty sign up to reserve your spot! Thank you for your help in making this special time work for our staff!

Christmas Spirit Week

To get into the spirit of Christmas, we are going to have some fun, themed days our last week of school before Christmas break, December 13-17. Here’s what we (along with Pine Ridge) have planned:

  • 12/13   Monday: Christmas socks
  • 12/14   Tuesday: Christmas sweater
  • 12/15   Wednesday: Christmas headgear (antlers, hats)
  • 12/16   Thursday: Red/green day
  • 12/17   Friday: Christmas PJs

Discover South Side

Do you or any of your friends or extended family have a prospective preschooler or kindergartener? Are you looking into options for the 22-23 school year? We’ll be having our second Discovery Night on January 18 at 6 pm, and we’d love to have you come and explore South Side’s preschool and kindergarten options for the 22-23 school year! So that we can prepare a personalized scavenger hunt for both you and your child, an RSVP is needed by emailing admissions@hollandchristian.org, or by calling 616.820.2805.

If you are unable to make it to any of these specialized events, you are still welcome to visit Holland Christian Schools in person or virtually to learn more about us and see things in action for yourself. Feel free to schedule a campus tour, or a virtual Zoom visit with the Admissions Department at admissions@hollandchristian.org or 616.820.2805. Enrollment for the 22-23 school year begins in early February of ’22.

Lost & Found

Our South Side lost & found items have moved into a gray tub in the office. If you are missing anything, please stop in and take a peek before Christmas break, as we will be donating the remaining items.

Substitutes Needed

With the unique year that we’ve been experiencing, we can always use more available substitute teachers! If you love working with kids, have obtained 60 or more college credits, and are willing to have a background check/fingerprinting done, we would love to add you to our list! If you are interested, please contact Rachel Hendershot at rhendershot@hollandchristian.org, or you can start an application on edustaff.org.

TRIP

Remember, December 8 is the last time to place an order for items to be received before Christmas.

IMPORTANT WEBSITE LINKS

/ Calendar

December:

6-14: Collection dates for Hand2Hand items
18: Christmas break begins

January:

3: School resumes
10-21: Delta Math & MAP testing
17: No school (MLK Day)
18: Discovery Night @ South Side 6 pm