Notes from the Dragon Cave

From the Desk of Schuba...


In this edition of Notes from the Dragon Cave, we're sharing a note from IBCS School Psychologist, SuBeckah Florczak, about mindfulness, and her training and implantation of the topic within education.


Greetings Izzi B. Community. I am enjoying my first year as the school psychologist here. Thank you for being so welcoming and kind. I know I have not had the opportunity to meet everyone, nut please know I am available if you have concerns or questions I may be able to navigate with you.


Schuba asked me to share a quick note about one of the school-wide interventions I have begun teaching in some of our classrooms. I am pleased to share I am teaching mindfulness curriculum. I received my training from a well-researched, evidence-based organization called, Mindful Schools. If you would like to learn more, please visit www.mindfulschools.org.


Mindfulness can support and sustain us by helping to manage stress of today's world. Mindfulness is shown to have a positive impact on stress, attention, and even relationships. The American Psychological Association shares research on a range of benefits of mindfulness, including:


  • Stress-reduction

  • Boosts to working memory

  • Focus

  • Less emotional reactivity

  • More cognitive flexibility

  • Relation satisfaction


I enjoy sharing mindfulness because it provides students and teachers with strategies to assist with focus, attention, emotional-regulation, and so much more. You can read more about the research and benefits online. The benefits of mindfulness can take us beyond the terrain of managing symptoms to a place where we develop our deeper human capacities for awareness, attention, empathy, kindness and compassion.


For questions or conversation about mindfulness in education, reach out to SuBeckah via email Su_Florczak@dpsk12.org or phone 720-423-9900.

Take Action....


Picture Day

Picture Day is Tuesday, Sept. 24. Picture packets were sent home this week. All students take individual pictures and class photos to be used in the IBCS yearbook. Families can purchase photos by filling out and returning the paper form, or online. Pictures packets contain specific information. Say cheese!



Harvest Tickets on Sale NOW

Join your fellow Isabella Bird families on the playground, Sunday, Oct. 6, 2-5 p.m., for our 6th Annual Harvest Festival. This is a fundraiser for the school and a great way to meet and enjoy an afternoon with our school community. Food is available for purchase from Biker Jim's; free popcorn and cider; games, crafts, inflatables, climbing wall, tattoos, live music, pumpkin patch and hayrides. Event tickets are $20/person and available online. Purchase tickets by Friday, Sept. 27 to receive a free hayride ticket. See Main Office Staff for discount ticket options.


Harvest Volunteers: Grab a friend or fellow classmate’s parent and sign up to give an hour of your time during the festival. We need a minimum of six volunteers for ECE and 15 volunteers for all other grades. Each grade will win a popsicle party, if they meet this minimum. Register today and pick your perfect volunteer spot!


For questions about Harvest Festival, contact IBCS Parent and Harvest Fest Chair, Catherine Schurger.


Highly Gifted & Talented Testing Request

Have you noticed your child...Learns subjects quickly? Displays an unusual intensity or feels emotions quickly? Has a strong sense of justice and/or injustice? Shows exceptional curiosity? Has deep intense feelings and reactions? Demonstrates abstract, complex, logical and insightful thinking? Is incredibly sensitive? Enjoys solving problems, especially with puzzles and numbers? Has rapid language acquisition? If so, you may be interested in our Highly Gifted & Talented (HGT) testing. Testing occurs at IBCS in November. To have your child tested, you must complete an online nomination form. If you would like a hard copy of the form, these are also available. The form must be completed and received at 1860 Lincoln St., by Friday, Nov. 1. Results from testing, along with a body of evidence, are utilized for Gifted & Talented (GT) identification. For questions, please teach out to our GT Teachers, Rebecca Mercer and Meg Torres. Review more characteristics of gifted learners.


What's Going on With...


Welcome Lisa Cohen, IBCS Social Worker

After 15-years in public health and, more specifically, infectious disease, Lisa Cohen is now a part-time social worker at IBCS. In this role, Lisa will work with families on attendance and tardies, 504s and accommodations, and within the Family Community Resource Center (FCRC) (read more about the FCRC below). Lisa believes young people thrive and have the potential to be their best self when they have robust supports, and when social-emotional learning is commensurate with academic development. In her free-time, she enjoys hiking and biking in the mountains, and reading and yogaing at home. Her most favorite activity is traveling with her kindergarten-aged daughter and husband to off-the-beaten-path places. Please stop by the FCRC to welcome Lisa, or contact her via email (coming soon).


IBCS' Family Community Resource Center, Call for Costume Donations

Because IBCS recognizes and values the integral relationship existing between family-success and student-success, we work to provide direct supports and/or connections to resources available in the larger community via the school’s Family Community Resource Center (FCRC). The FCRC is located in the Front Office and is home to our donations-based food pantry and child-sized clothing supply. Occasionally, the FCRC seeks donations of non-perishable food items and clothing; these requests are communicated in a variety of ways, including Notes from the Dragon Cave.


Current FRCR Needs: The FCRC is in need of new or gently used Halloween costumes, sizes 6-14. Donations can be dropped off with Joannie in the Front Office now through Wednesday, Oct. 30. For questions, please contact Izzi B. Parent and Volunteer, Susan Lorimor.


Garden Update, Call for Help

The Izzi B. Garden is coming to the end of its life cycle. Fifth Graders will soon uproot and compost the existing crops later this month. This is the first step in “putting the garden to bed” for winter. We'll plant cover crops in each bed once existing crops are out. Cover crops will stay all winter and then be worked into the soil to provide extra nutrients come spring time.

Put the Garden to Bed Day: Parent volunteers are needed Saturday, Oct. 5, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m., to plant cover crops. Please text IBCS Garden Volunteer and Parent, Sarah Lopez at 720-335-8435, if you are able to help.


The IBCS garden is successful because of Vermicomposting (and lots of love, of course). To continue its success, we'll host two worm bins in Anne and Andy’s second and third grade classrooms. Students will learn the process of nurturing “Red Wiggler” worms, utilizing newspaper and fall leaves as bedding substrates, turning bedding to aerate contents, feeding appropriate food material and utilizing “aged” castings in our school garden.


King Soopers, Community Rewards Program

King Soopers gives back 5 percent of what you spend to IBCS, when you use and link your loyalty number to Isabella Bird. If you shop at King Soopers, please take a moment to link your King Soopers card to IBCS to participate in the community rewards program. Its super easy to do! Here's how:


  1. Log into your King Soopers account via kingsoopers.com.

  2. Click on "My Account."

  3. Select "Community Rewards."

  4. Add IBCS Council - Isabella Bird Community School; or our organization number: CC756

You can invite family and friends to do the same! For questions, contact Izzi B. Parent and Volunteer, Susan Lorimor.


IBCS Classroom Liaison, Group Meeting

Classroom Liaisons are all signed up and the official IBCS Classroom Liaison kick-off meeting is slated for next Thursday. During the meeting, the group will discuss liaison initiatives for the school year, show off new technology for volunteer sign ups and answer any and all questions members of the group may have. Look for messages from your Classroom Liaison soon!