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Elementary Connections Group

The ElemElementary Connections Groupentary Connections Group, formerly the Parent Advisory Committee, is devoted to bringing nature, families, educators, and the community together to create unique and memorable experiences that nurture our children's minds. The group is focused on building a stronger school community through experiences like elementary camps and family mentorships.


Volunteering & Outreach

The Elementary Connections Group expanded a couple of years ago to include more school/classroom volunteering and outreach. Each year, we look for anyone interested in taking on the following roles:

  • Lower Elementary Classroom Volunteer Liaison
  • Upper Elementary Classroom Volunteer Liaison
  • Elder-Outreach Liaison

With the 2021-2022 school year being back in person, ECG will work on volunteer and senior outreach within the schools when volunteers are allowed back into the buildings.

Below are basic summaries of the roles, but these can be molded to what is needed. If you are interested or have any questions, please reach out to Adrianne Quinn at adrianne.quinn@gmail.com.

Lower & Upper Elementary Classroom Volunteer Liaison:

An individual for each school to work with the Parent Liaison, teachers and Principal. The Classroom Volunteer Liaison would determine what teachers need/want volunteers, if they have a Classroom Coordinator, encourage the use of family members for classroom volunteers, help to pinpoint best-practices for recruiting and communicating, etc. The Liaison would help to promote classroom volunteers and would assist in finding Classroom Coordinators, as needed.

Elder-Outreach Liaison:

An individual to lead elder-outreach via direct mail invitation. The goal is to encourage inter-generational learning and to incorporate elders from the community into Classroom Volunteering. Generally speaking, the elder community does not utilize online sign-ups, etc. As such, scheduling elder volunteers would require direct contact with both the elders and the school administration. 


Camp

Ferndale Elementary and the Elementary Connections Group organizes and plans camps for each grade every school year. The camps are an opportunity for all students in Ferndale Elementary to participate in special activities in an outdoor setting. The First Fives, Kindergarten and 1st graders enjoy a one day outdoor camp. The 2nd and 3rd graders have two days of camp. The 4th grade camp is two days with one overnight stay, and the 5th grade camp is three days and 2 nights.

Camp projects, trips, and activities are theme‐based, structured around the Common Core Curriculum, and strongly supported by our teachers and administrators. This year’s theme will be “My World”. Parents work with teachers to plan and facilitate these programs. Camp is not a field trip.  Camp is so much more!  Families come together to plan, coordinate, teach, and implement this wonderful outdoor learning experience for all our children.

In order to run Camp efficiently, 1 parent volunteer is needed for approximately every 3 students participating in Camp.  Camp is entirely Parent planned and run. Our wonderful teachers are there to approve parents’ Camp vision, review/approve lesson plans and oversee student behavior on the day-of, but otherwise, this day is basically for the teachers’ enjoyment and the parents to manage. Please see the individual camp tabs below for what volunteer positions are needed.

A combined one day camp for First Fives, Kindergarten and 1st Grade students with parent designed and led centers around the "My World" theme. We are still looking for a Camp Coordinator and will eventually need Center Developers/Leaders. If you are interested or want more information, please contact Adrianne Quinn at adrianne.quinn@gmail.com.

Location

TBD (Local)

Date

TBD

Cost

$10

Camp Coordinator

TBD

Volunteers Needed

We are ALL volunteers with a common goal:

  1. to actively participate in our children’s outdoor education Camp in conjunction with teacher overview and
  2. to create a fun and engaging camp with the purpose of supporting classroom curriculum/learning.  K/1 Camps are combined to encourage mentoring both students and parents.

The annual theme is curriculum-based and strongly supported by our teachers and administrators. There are many ways to create a wonderful learning environment with these topics and there are many resources available at the school and beyond.  Volunteers are encouraged to utilize all current resources as well as develop their own new twists! We work with the budget afforded us through Elementary Connection Group fundraising only. Donations are allowed & encouraged.

*Accommodations are made for special needs students and, of course, our wonderful grandparent volunteers!  You must let your Camp Coordinator know in advance of any special accommodations that need to be made.  

Camp Coordinator: NEED 1 PERSON 

Day-of Camp Attendance Not Required, but Encouraged

  • The Camp Coordinator plans, organizes, and orchestrates the annual camps for all students. This committee will work in partnership with the classroom teachers to organize, plan details, and carry out a successful camp experience which are based on themes each year that align with the grade-level content expectations. If you are willing to oversee the grade-level camp planning committee by organizing the meetings, keeping track of deadlines, and coordinating volunteers, this job is for YOU (and a partner if you like)!  Lots of support is available from past coordinators

Center Planners

Day-of Camp Attendance Not Required

  • If you cannot attend Camp, but have a great idea for a Center and would love to develop it and then teach it to someone who can lead it on the day of Camp, this job is for you!  Sometimes a full-day at Camp is a tough commitment. You may find that once you’ve created a Center, you just have to be there to see the kids enjoy it! In which case, take the day off work and join us even if it’s just for part of the day.

Center Leader

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Develops concept for specific Center
  • Prepares Lesson Plan
  • Obtains all supplies needed, whether from Camp Closet or approved purchase by the Treasurer
  • Communicates with Camp Coordinator if need specific items to be donated
  • Sets up Center on day of Camp
  • Runs Center (with Helpers) on day of Camp
  • Cleans up Center after Camp

Center Helper

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Helps the Center Leader on the day of Camp with set-up, teaching center and clean-up

Group Leader 

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Distributes name-tags, bags/bandanas at the beginning of Camp to students in group.
  • Leads group of ~ 10 students (give or take) through cycles of Centers at Camp 
  • Your child cannot be in your Group

Group Helper

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Helps the Group Leader corral kids through the cycles of Centers on the day of Camp
  • Makes bathroom runs if students need it
  • Your child cannot be in your Group

Set-Up / Clean-Up

Part Time Attendance Required

  • If you have limited time in the morning or afternoon, consider just helping the Centers set-up or clean-up.  We may need volunteers to deliver extra tables or other supplies in the morning on the day of Camp from the school to the park, or back again in the afternoon

Photographer

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • We love seeing the happy faces of our Campers!  If you enjoy taking pictures and have the ability to share those photos via Facebook on our Ferndale Elementary Schools’ Parent Network Facebook page and providing the Overall Camp Coordinator with a digital copy for archival purposes, then we’d love to have you!  There are certain students that cannot be photographed, which our Photographer will need to be cautious of and respect.

Timekeeper

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • If you have a loud voice and/or a whistle and an accurate device to measure time, this job is for you!  Timekeeper is a great role in that you are able to wander Camp and visit all the Centers.

At-home Help

Attendance Not Required

Two days of camp for 2nd and 3rd grade with one day overlapping for 2nd and 3rd Grade Camp.  Those grades will be combined that day for "Center Day" to encourage mentorship. We are still looking for a Camp Coordinator and will eventually need Center Developers/Leaders. If you are interested or want more information, please contact Adrianne Quinn at adrianne.quinn@gmail.com.

Location

TBD (Local)

Dates:

TBD - 3rd Grade Camp

TBD - 2nd & 3rd Grade Camp

TBD - 2nd Grade Camp

Cost

$25

Camp Coordinator

TBD

Volunteers Needed:

We are ALL volunteers with a common goal:

  1. to actively participate in our children’s outdoor education Camp in conjunction with teacher overview and
  2. to create a fun and engaging camp with the purpose of supporting classroom curriculum/learning.  2/3 Camps are combined to encourage mentoring both students and parents.

The annual theme is curriculum-based and strongly supported by our teachers and administrators. There are many ways to create a wonderful learning environment with these topics and there are many resources available at the school and beyond.  Volunteers are encouraged to utilize all current resources as well as develop their own new twists! We work with the budget afforded us through Elementary Connection Group fundraising only. Donations are allowed & encouraged.

*Accommodations are made for special needs students and, of course, our wonderful grandparent volunteers!  You must let your Camp Coordinator know in advance of any special accommodations that need to be made.  

Center Planners

Day-of Camp Attendance Not Required

  • If you cannot attend Camp, but have a great idea for a Center and would love to develop it and then teach it to someone who can lead it on the day of Camp, this job is for you!  Sometimes a full-day at Camp is a tough commitment. You may find that once you’ve created a Center, you just have to be there to see the kids enjoy it! In which case, take the day off work and join us even if it’s just for part of the day.

Center Leader

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Develops concept for specific Center
  • Prepares Lesson Plan
  • Obtains all supplies needed, whether from Camp Closet or approved purchase by the Treasurer
  • Communicates with Camp Coordinator if need specific items to be donated
  • Sets up Center on day of Camp
  • Runs Center (with Helpers) on day of Camp
  • Cleans up Center after Camp

Center Helper

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Helps the Center Leader on the day of Camp with set-up, teaching center and clean-up

Group Leader 

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Distributes name-tags, bags/bandanas at the beginning of Camp to students in group.
  • Leads group of ~ 10 students (give or take) through cycles of Centers at Camp 
  • Your child cannot be in your Group

Group Helper

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • Helps the Group Leader corral kids through the cycles of Centers on the day of Camp
  • Makes bathroom runs if students need it
  • Your child cannot be in your Group

Set-Up / Clean-Up

Part Time Attendance Required

  • If you have limited time in the morning or afternoon, consider just helping the Centers set-up or clean-up.  We may need volunteers to deliver extra tables or other supplies in the morning on the day of Camp from the school to the park, or back again in the afternoon

Photographer

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • We love seeing the happy faces of our Campers!  If you enjoy taking pictures and have the ability to share those photos via Facebook on our Ferndale Elementary Schools’ Parent Network Facebook page and providing the Overall Camp Coordinator with a digital copy for archival purposes, then we’d love to have you!  There are certain students that cannot be photographed, which our Photographer will need to be cautious of and respect.

Timekeeper

Full Day-of Camp Attendance Required

  • If you have a loud voice and/or a whistle and an accurate device to measure time, this job is for you!  Timekeeper is a great role in that you are able to wander Camp and visit all the Centers.

At-home Help

Attendance Not Required

The 4th grade camp is the first year of overnight camp. It is two days and one night of camp.  This camp experience needs male & female chaperones for the day and night portion of the camp. We are still looking for Camp Coordinators. If you are interested or want more information, please contact Adrianne Quinn at adrianne.quinn@gmail.com. A camp information folder will be coming home with students in January and will include necessary forms and more detailed information.

Location

Camp Tamarack

Dates

TBD

Cost

$100

Camp Coordinators

TBD

Volunteers Needed:

Camp would not be a success without parents who volunteer as chaperones.  This is the time that we ask for as many who are willing and able to volunteer to enhance your child’s camp experience.  We have many positions that need to be filled and it is imperative that all parents generously volunteer. Please remember that camp can’t take place without your support! 

Camp fees cover overnight lodging, meals, snacks, staff & activities.  As a parent volunteer, your lodging will be free of charge and include all meals & snacks.  Parents can also participate in activities throughout camp, although there a few activities that are reserved just for the children.  Please see the Volunteer Packet below for all necessary forms. 

Volunteer Background Check - REQUIRED

At camp your child will participate in activities conducted by Camp staff with the support of parent volunteers.  Volunteers are needed for all activities, for free time, and overnight supervision.   

We have separate boy and girl cabins at camp, and multiple of each. For every cabin, we will need a parent supervision.  This means that we will need at least 14 moms and 18 dads to spend the night at camp. Parents spending the night must be at camp by 8:00 p.m. and able to stay with their cabin group until breakfast at 8:30 a.m. the next morning.  The facility has showers and volunteering parents will have meals provided for them as well.

Volunteer Commitment Forms and other paperwork will be sent home in Informational Folders in the spring. Positions will be filled on a first come, first served basis.  Once all assignments have been made, you will receive a copy of the schedule and will be expected to attend at the times you have agreed to serve.  

As you will see, camp is a very fun, exciting, and educational experience for both parents and children alike.  Please partner with us and donate your time generously to make this year’s 4th grade camp a success.

The 5th grade camp is the culmination of a student's elementary camp experiences. It is the longest camp experience; three days and two nights of camp. This camp experience needs male & female chaperones for the day and night portion of the camp. We are still looking for Camp Coordinators. If you are interested or want more information, please contact Adrianne Quinn at adrianne.quinn@gmail.com. A camp information folder will be coming home with students in January and will include necessary forms and more detailed information.

Location:

Camp Cavell

Dates:

TBD

Cost:

$130

Camp Coordinator:

TBD

Volunteers Needed:

Camp would not be a success without parents who volunteer as chaperones.  This is the time that we ask for as many who are willing and able to volunteer to enhance your child’s camp experience.  We have many positions that need to be filled and it is imperative that all parents generously volunteer. Please remember that camp can’t take place without your support! 

Camp fees cover overnight lodging, meals, snacks, staff & activities.  As a parent volunteer, your lodging will be free of charge and include all meals & snacks.  Parents can also participate in activities throughout camp, although there a few activities that are reserved just for the children.  

Volunteer Background Check - REQUIRED

At camp your child will participate in activities conducted by Camp staff with the support of parent volunteers.  Volunteers are needed for all activities, for free time, and overnight supervision.

We have separate boy and girl cabins at camp, and multiple of each. For every cabin, we will need a parent supervision.  This means that we will need at least 16 moms and 14 dads to spend the night each night at camp. Parents spending the night must be at camp by 8:00 p.m. and able to stay with their cabin group until breakfast at 8:30 a.m. the next morning.  The facility has showers and volunteering parents will have meals provided for them as well. We strongly encourage parents to stay only one night at camp to give other parents the opportunity to participate.  Overnight volunteering is a popular choice.

Volunteer Commitment Forms and other paperwork will be sent home in the Informational Folders in January. Positions will be filled on a first come, first served basis.  Once all assignments have been made, you will receive a copy of the schedule and will be expected to attend at the times you have agreed to serve.  

As you will see, camp is a very fun, exciting, and educational experience for both parents and children alike.  Please partner with us and donate your time generously to make this year’s 5th grade camp a success.


Camp Sponsors

Do you remember the first time you went away to camp? Did you make new friends, try new things, sit and enjoy a campfire? For students in Ferndale Elementary Schools, attending camp is an essential part of the school year. It provides an opportunity to take learning outside the classroom and into the community. ECG has a budget of just under $50,000. While the majority of the money comes from fees paid by families, there are a large number of those who cannot afford Camp. More than half of our Ferndale Elementary students qualify for free or reduced lunch. ECG ensures that EVERY child has the opportunity to go to Camp through fundraising and sponsors.

This is where we need your help. If you work for, own or know of a company that would be interested in sponsoring Ferndale Elementary Camp, please send us an e-mail.

As a sponsor, your business’ logo/name will be placed on the back of the annual Camp T-Shirt, one of the many Camp traditions. Every one of our students receive a shirt, which includes designs by fifth graders on the front. Additional details about each sponsorship level are listed below.

 

 

  • Large logo on the back of our Camp T-Shirts which will be distributed to approximately 1,000 kids and adults.

  • Large logo on banner at each of our six Camps which are attended by not only kids, but hundreds of parents. 

  • Facebook shoutouts (Parent Groups and Public Forums) with click back to your website. 

 

  • Medium logo on the back of our Camp T-Shirts which will be distributed to approximately 1,000 kids and adults. 

  • Medium logo on banner at each of our six Camps which are attended by not only kids, but hundreds of parents. 

  • Facebook shoutouts (Parent Groups and Public Forums).

 

  • Small logo on the back of our Camp T-Shirts which will be distributed to approximately 1,000 kids and adults. 

  • Small logo on banner at each of our six Camps which are attended by not only kids, but hundreds of parents.  

  • Facebook shoutouts (Parent Groups and Public Forums). 

 

  • Company Name listed on the back of our Camp T-Shirts which will be distributed to approximately 1,000 kids and adults.

  • Company name on banner at each of our six Camps which are attended by not only kids, but hundreds of parents. 

  • Facebook shoutouts (Parent Groups and Public Forums).


Fundraisers

Elementary Connections Group plans and organizes group and individual fundraisers throughout the year. Group fundraisers help to support overall camp costs, such as t-shirts, camp fees, etc. The individual fundraisers help families raise money for their children's camp costs. Below are the individual fundraisers we typically plan for the year and their current status:

The Elementary Connections Group also hold several general fundraisers throughout the school year where the proceeds benefit the general camp scholarship fund for Ferndale Public Schools Elementary students and then general ECG funds for outdoor learning and community outreach. Below are the general fundraisers we typically plan for the year.

  • Winter - Clothing Swap
  • Spring - Just 4 Kicks Adult Variety Show
  • Spring - Butterfly Larvae

If you are interested in assisting with one of the fundraisers, please send us an e-mail.

During the 2019-2020 school year, we raised over $4000 for camp scholarships and over 150 students had fully paid for their camp costs through fundraising. Individual funds raised will be carried over to the 2021-2022 school year for camp costs.

The Norwood St Coffee Fundraiser is one of Elementary Connections Group's newer fundraisers! The fundraiser will help families raise money to pay for their individual camp costs. Each bag is sold for $14, and $5 from every bag sold goes towards students' camp costs.

Camp Fundraiser. Participate in this easy fundraiser and cover your student's cost for camp! Ground & whole bean coffee. Elementary Connections Group is offering this fundraiser, so students can earn money for their individual camp account.* Norwood St. Coffee Roasters. $5 per bag goes directly to student's camp account. All orders must be made and purchased online at https://www.schoolpay.com/link/norwoodcoffee Scan for Order Website. You may use the order form on the opposite side to collect orders and payments from your friends and family, and then submit the entire order online. Please do not return the order form or any cash/checks to the school. Order Due: 11/29/2021. Orders Arrive: 12/15/2021. Any monies earned over the cost of a student's individual camp costs will first be used towards the general camp scholarship fund and then general ECG funds for outdoor learning and community outreach. Questions: ferndale.elementaryconnections@gmail.com

Norwood St Coffee Roasters is an ultra-nano coffee roasting company in Oak Park, MI. It was created to support direct trade coffees, small holder farms, and making high-end specialty coffee more accessible. The coffee is roasted to order so it's at the peak of freshness.

Coffee Descriptions:

  • Medium Roast: Colombia Supremo - Medium body with notes of chocolate and almond and hints of cherry sweetness.
  • Dark Roast: Sumatra Mandheling - Rich, smoky, and earthy with hints of cedar and dates. 
  • Grind Types: Whole Bean or Drip

Each 12 oz. bag of coffee will make about 28 cups of coffee, depending on how strong it is brewed.
Try using 1 Tbsp. per 6 oz. water and adjust to taste. Coffee is best within 3 weeks of roast date.

Orders will be made online only at: https://www.schoolpay.com/link/norwoodcoffee
Pick your coffee and check out as a Guest (Thanks, just want to pay). You can pass the link along to your friends and family, just make sure that they know your child's school and teacher's name.

Orders must be made online by 11/29/2021 and will be sent home with your child on 12/15/2021. If the total order for your student at Lower is more than 4 or at Upper is more than 6, we will contact you by text to coordinate a pick-up option. If there are any questions, please reach out to

Detroit PistonsThe Detroit Pistons Game is a fundraiser that helps families raise money to pay for their individual camp costs. Each ticket is typically sold for $25, and $5 from every ticket sold goes towards students' camp costs. More information will be available at a later date.

 

  • Game: Pistons vs. TBD
  • Date: TBD
  • Ticket Cost: $25, $5 from every ticket sold goes towards students' camp costs

Order can be made online for an additional service fee per ticket.

Orders will be sent electronically for orders made online and delivered to the students at school for those made by the paper order form. If there are any questions, please reach out to:

Ticket Information - TBD

Camp Costs - ferndale.elementaryconnections@gmail.com

In the Spring of 2021, the Butterfly Larvae Fundraiser sold 75 cups of 2 larvae and 148 butterfly kits (nets and 4 larvae). Think of all the amazing Painted Lady butterflies that we helped hatch! Students raised over $350 for Camp Scholarships!

Thank you for all of the support of Camp!

Meetings:

Elementary Connections Group is holding a Camp Information Meeting:

Please attend to learn about Camp and provide your valuable input!

Date: Tuesday, December 14th, 2021

Time: 6:00PM

Location: Virtual

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us06web.zoom.us/j/83539924602?pwd=a05FMVozUGE3U1lpZjRCcEhFQXFMQT09
Meeting ID: 835 3992 4602
Passcode: 540826

Camp information meeting. Tuesday, December 14th at 6:00pm. Please attend to learn about Camp and provide your valuable input! Zoom Information: CAMP $35  https://tinyurl.com/ECGCamp Meeting ID: 835 3992 4602 Passcode: 540826 CONTACT US: ferndale.elementaryconnections@gmail.com www.ferndaleschools.org/family/parentorgs/elconnections/  Ferndale Elementary Camp FF/K/1st Grade 2nd/3rd Grade 4th Grade 5th Grade

The next joint PTA & Elementary Connections Group meeting will be held:

Date: Tuesday, January 11th, 2022

Time: 6:30pm

Location: Google Meet 

This is a joint meeting with the Ferndale Elementary PTA.


2021-2022 Leadership Team

Our active Elementary Connections Leadership Team is proud to make Ferndale Schools more accessible and really focus on building a stronger school community.

Co-Presidents
 

Vice-President
 

  • April Campbell

Treasurer
 

  • Sarah Elturk

The Elementary Connections Group can be contacted at: ferndale.elementaryconnections@gmail.com


The next Family Outdoor Nature Walk will be:

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Location: TBD