Camp Woodland Hills
June 10 through August 14, 2019
For children entering TK through 6th Grade

Enrollment due by Friday, April 12
For more information, visit us at:
Birthday Books
Your donations are appreciated. Thank you for thinking of WHPS and helping to make a difference!
Goldstein Family
Makhloufi Family

Open House

Parents and children, join us for a special evening:
Collins Campus Oxnard Campus
Thursday, April 25
6:30-8:00 PM
Thursday, May 2
6:30-8:00 PM
  • Classroom Displays
  • Book Fair
  • Art Fair
  • Science Fair (Elementary)
  • Refreshments
2019-2020 School Year Preview: Curious what your child can expect for Fall 2019 and beyond? Come see what the older classrooms have been up to this year!
School closes at 5:00 PM to prepare for the event (gates re-open 6:30 PM).
School Tours
A few select spaces are still available for the fall. If you know someone who is interested, please have them contact the school to RSVP for a tour.

Elementary & Preschool Tours (10-11 AM)
Tuesday, April 2
Tuesday, April 9
Tuesday, April 23
Tuesday, April 30

Parent Association | Corner

PAG Gala: May 4, 2019

Tickets on sale soon.
GREAT deals in the PRE-EVENT AUCTION: Restaurants, Underwood Family Farms, AMERICAN IDOL, camp gift certificates, and more!
Only up for a few more days! 
BID HERE (open to ALL families)

PAWS: Gala
Thank you to the Gala Committee for a world-class event! 

Erin Krauss - Melissa Brockman - Lisa Levy - Darcy Pollan - Brooke Fischer
Zabina Bhasin - Jeff Selman - Alison Gussin 


Did you know PAWS awarded a $300 grant to every classroom this year?
Teachers purchased special items, beyond normal curriculum and manipulatives.

Stay tuned on the WHPS Facebook page to learn about what your child's class received (be sure you are following us on Facebook!)


Special Edition | Seth Pozzi -  Head of School

WHPS Accreditation
Why does it matter?

It’s alive! This school is a living, breathing place that is constantly growing and improving! I would argue that all you need to do is set foot on campus for a few minutes to see this. But, there’s another way for you to know.

Over the coming months, we will be working on the renewal of our school’s accreditation. WHPS is accredited by The Western Association of Schools & Colleges (WASC), which is an independent accreditation commission for schools (PreK-12 and higher education) worldwide. Being accredited by WASC is one way for our families to know that our school is worthy of the trust you place in us to provide the highest quality learning environment, and it ensures that our school can clearly demonstrate our commitment to continuous self-improvement.

Our most recent accreditation renewal was in 2014, when we were awarded a full 6 year term. We are already working on our WASC Accreditation Self-Study & Action Plan for the upcoming renewal and are preparing for our WASC Accreditation Committee site visit, just under a year away (March 9-13, 2020).

Accreditation Facts:
  • WASC Accreditation is a rigorous multi-year process.
  • WASC Accreditation requires us to thoroughly demonstrate how we achieve our school's unique philosophy, mission, vision, and goals, and ultimately deliver a high quality program.
  • Not all schools are accredited.
WASC Accreditation ensures you are at a school where:
  • The program/curriculum is rooted in research.
  • Teachers receive ongoing training and professional development.
  • There are meaningful opportunities for parent education and engagement.
  • The school is never done improving.
  • We ensure each child is learning and have clear guidelines about what to do if they’re not.
  • Student learning addresses global/21st century competencies:
    • Collaboration
    • Creativity
    • Communication
    • Critical Thinking
How can you learn more or get involved? - Give us feedback early and often
Our Self-Study & Action Plan will be developed by a team of school administration, teachers and parents. If you are inspired by the work our school is doing and want to contribute to the team, please let me know. Any time you have feedback about the program, whether it's something you love or something you really wish we would do differently, we want to hear from you. I invite you to come by my office, call or email any time you have feedback. If you have critical feedback or a concern, we want to know about it is real-time so we can partner with you on a solution.

Parent Survey Coming Soon - Goal is 100% Participation
The Self-Study primarily looks at two areas for improvement: Student Achievement Data and Parent Survey Data. We gather information through our End-of-Year Parent Survey, coming out later this month. I implore every parent to please fill this out! We design the survey so it can be completed in under 5 minutes, and I (as well as the entire leadership team) read every single one and take note of all ratings, comments and suggestions. We may not be able to implement every idea, suggestion, hope or goal, but we are here to listen to you. And, all of this information goes into the Self-Study & Action Plan.

Stay tuned for lots more information about WASC Accreditation in the coming months. And, please set aside 5 minutes to complete the (anonymous) survey when it comes out.
Preschool News
Collins Campus
Robin & Ms. Ailin
Oxnard Campus
Dr. Tracy  Ewing & Ms. Christine

Emotional Intelligence
Why teach it to teachers?

February School-Wide Professional Development
As you know, Preschool closes early twice a year for school-wide Professional Development. Last month’s workshop: Emotional Intelligence (EI) in the Preschool Setting was led by Gwen Bagley, one of the preeminent experts on EI in Early Childhood Education. EI is the ability to utilize emotions and apply them to tasks, for example thinking and problem-solving during a highly emotional event or situation. Having the ability to manage emotions, including controlling your own, as well as cheering up or calming down another person is Emotional Intelligence.

At the workshop, Gwen outlined four key components of EI: self-awareness, self-management, managing distressing emotions, and social awareness. As adult learners, we tried out some tools to help us understand our own strengths and develop areas where we are less strong. We also looked at how “emotional hijacks” can get in the way of effective relationships.

Why do we need Emotionally Intelligent Teachers?
EI is critically important for Early Childhood Educators for two reasons:

  • Reason 1 - Teachers with higher EI are more effective, have better parent-partnerships and make better decisions.
  • Reason 2 - In order for teachers to help children develop EI, they must be able to model and discuss their own emotions with children. You can't teach if you can't do!

Emotionally Intelligent people know how to make the workplace, and the world, a better place. Daniel Goleman, one of the best-known writers and researchers on Emotional Intelligence (Why It Can Matter More Than the IQ) states that it is Emotional Intelligence that drives a person to excellence both personally and professionally.

Tips for Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child

Acknowledge Perspective and Empathize  
You can’t prevent (and actually wouldn't want to prevent) most conflicts, upsets, or injustices. But when your child is upset, empathize. Just being understood helps humans let go of troubling emotions. Empathizing doesn’t mean you agree, just that you see her side, too. Remember she is entitled to her perspective. Feeling understood triggers biochemicals that travel in the neural pathways. Each time you empathize with your child, you’re strengthening these neural pathways to learn how to self-soothe. As your child grows, these pathways will be stronger and allow her to eventually self-soothe without your guidance. As adults, it is not our job to solve the problem. Empathize, and if necessary, help your child reflect on how she might want to resolve (or not resolve) the issue.

Allow Expression
Children can’t differentiate their emotions and them-selves. Accept their emotions rather than deny or minimize them. Minimizing a child’s emotions creates a belief that feelings are shameful or unacceptable (e.g. "Boys don't cry..."). Disapproving of fear or anger won’t stop him from having those feelings but it may well force him to repress them. Teach that feelings are understandable and part of being human. Your acceptance helps your child accept his emotions which in turn helps your child to resolve and move on.

Listen to Feelings
Rage doesn’t begin to dissipate until it feels heard. Listen to the feeling your child is expressing. Once the child feels they have been heard or expressed themselves, they can let go and get on with life. Resist the urge to protect your child from hurt feelings. The nature of healthy human emotions is to move through us, swamp us, and then pass away. Children can be terrified of their strong emotions, so they try to fend them off to feel safe. Tantrums are nature’s way to help children vent. 

Teach Problem-Solving
Teach your child to feel emotions and tolerate them without always needing to act on them. Once emotions are understood and accepted, the feelings lose their charge and begin to dissipate. This leaves an opening for problem-solving. Children just need our help to brainstorm constructive solutions to problems.  With coaching, we can empower children to handle their feelings in a positive way. It is important to not problem-solve for your child, but to be a participant in their problem solving.

Play it Out
When you notice a negative pattern developing, recognize that your child has some BIG feelings he doesn’t know how to handle, and step in with the BEST medicine: Play! Help him to work through those feelings by playing a game. Be creative, be silly, and change the tone, change the environment. All children experience BIG feelings on a daily basis. They often feel powerless and pushed around, angry, sad, scared, or jealous. Emotionally healthy children process these feelings through play. Your child cannot put these emotional conflicts into words, but he can play them out symbolically and resolve most of the time. Remember: laughter releases hormones similar to tears, but laughter can be a lot more fun!
Elementary News | Jacey Dexter - Elementary Principal

Leadership Notebooks
Every Student's Individual Learning Profile

I want to take this opportunity to share one of the most unique things we do as an elementary school to ensure that our students leave us as empowered learners: Leadership Notebooks. A Leadership Notebook contains each student’s unique set of goals, strengths, and growth opportunities. This allows students (even as young as TK) to take ownership of their learning and celebrate their unique strengths. A Leadership Notebook is simply a fancy word for a 3-ring binder, but its contents tell a wonderfully complex story.

When students are introduced to this concept, they can’t help but giggle and perhaps imagine a pig dressed in a wig. A “PIG” is a Personally Important Goal; this is a goal that students set out to reach that is personally important to them (e.g. getting better at playing the drums, getting to the next level in karate, scoring a soccer goal). A “WIG” is a Wildly Important Goal; these goals are set aside for academic growth and are directly school-related (e.g. growing by 2 reading levels, mastering multiplication facts, learning all 100 sight words). Our highly trained staff sit down with each student to establish goals early in the year and revisit them regularly. Students are learning at an early age that they can set and accomplish their goals. Teachers work with each student to set goals that are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. This is a skill many adults are still working on! Throughout the adventure of elementary, our students constantly refine this skill, so that by the time they leave our program they are confident goal-setters (and achievers) who are able to approach complex situations and work toward incremental growth. Essentially, they become CEOs of their learning and development.

Data drives everything that we do at WHPS. But, data doesn’t necessarily mean multiple-choice tests and bubble-in answers. The data our students track in their Leadership Notebooks includes both “formative” assessments (during the learning process) and “summative” assessments (at the end of the learning process), work samples, and reflections about their learning and personal development. All of this data drives our teachers’ decisions and approaches to each individual student. By involving students in tracking and discussing data, we shift the conversation from a teacher or parent telling a student they’ve succeeded or (G-d forbid) failed, to instead leveraging a partnership in which students are involved in critical conversations about their learning.

Growing as a learner is not linear, it is filled with big jumps as well as occasional setbacks. Using Leadership Notebooks as a tool allows each child/family to celebrate successes and talk about areas that are harder. It can sometimes be more difficult for adults to watch their child struggle and experience setbacks, but children do not benefit from being successful at everything all the time. Ultimately, we are raising our children to be resilient, empowered, lifelong learners, and some of this comes from helping them learn how to overcome setbacks, disappointments, or even failure.

One of the most rewarding parts of my career is helping children build resiliency while we have them in a safe, protected environment. This approach is an incredibly powerful tool, which helps prepare our children to go off to middle school (and beyond) with the tenacity, grit, coping abilities, and communication skills necessary to succeed at complex and difficult tasks.

"Our Barnyard" News | WHPS Science & Nature Center

Hello Barnyard Friends!

Spring is here, and all the animals know it. Everyone is getting excited for the season, showing a lot more energy and enthusiasm.

Elementary has been full of exciting learning this month. In Evolution & Genetics, we learned about Neanderthals (another species of humans that lived right alongside us) including why they went extinct while we survived. In April, we are moving on to a topic our students have been asking about all year, hybrids! What exactly is a hybrid? Are they natural in the wild? Are they “better” than non-hybrids? All these questions and more will finally be answered!

Recently our Ecology classes learned about photosynthesis and the plant cycle; plants starting as seeds, growing roots, stems leaves, and flowers, and then producing more seeds. We then started our planting project in which each class planted a different herb. This month, we will learn about pollination and binomial nomenclature, the process of naming new species.

As expected, our Animal Care class had a blast in our poop lesson! It was a fun-filled day full of giggles and laughs, but we also saw just how important poop is to an animal caregiver. Poop can often be the first indication that something is wrong with our animals, so Mrs. Tanja and I keep a close eye on it here in the barnyard! With the end of the year coming up, our Animal Care class only has a few more lessons to go. Next up is learning the importance of record keeping and Ethograms. Ethograms are charts and diagrams describing an animal's behavior, or a group of animals. It is yet another way for Animal Caregivers to know if something is wrong with our animal friends.

Preschool has already been enjoying the weather in the Barnyard. We learned about baby animals and the different names we use when they are young: ducklings, lambs, or even poult for a baby turkey! Everyone enjoyed our “Chicken Mama Game” where we all made nests and laid some eggs, protecting them from the egg monster, Mr. Matthew. As we continue our spring lessons, we will be learning about plants and their five different parts, culminating with planting herbs for the animals!

Don’t forget to come by and visit all your barnyard friends. We even have some new friends in our Rabbitat that will be happy to meet you!

-Mr. Matthew and Mrs. Tanja.

We're on Instagram @whpschool!

April Events - 2019
Check out our Google Calendar for all upcoming events!
April Collins Oxnard
April Fool's Day
1   Orientation Meetings:
A Taste of 1st Grade @ 3:15pm
2 Elementary & Preschool Tours @ 10am
2   A Taste of 2nd Grade @ 3:15pm
Restaurant Night @ Fresh Brothers (sponsored by PAG) 
3   A Taste of 3rd Grade @ 3:15pm
PAWS Meeting @ 6:30pm
4   A Taste of 4th Grade @ 3:15pm
5th Grade Graduation Pictures
5   A Taste of 5th Grade @ 3:15pm
PAWS: Babysitting Night 6-10pm
8   Spring Break Camp (Elementary) Registration Due
Restaurant Night @ The Stand (sponsored by PAWS) 
10 PAG Event: Petting Zoo
Farmer's Market - Hosted by Rm. 8
PAWS Event: "Faery Hunt"
12   Elementary Spring Talent Show @ 10am
Farmer's Market - Hosted by Rm. 2 & 4
13 PAG Spring Yard Sale 7am-1pm  
15-19   Elementary Spring Break
16 PAG Meeting @ 6pm  
19 Spring Half-Day 
19 Spring Egg Hunt @ 11am  
22 GO Event (Get Outside for Earth Day)
22   Elementary Classes Resume
23 Elementary & Preschool Tours @ 10am
25 School Closes @ 5pm
Open House 6:30-8pm
27 PAG: Kids Night Out 5-9pm  
30 Elementary & Preschool Tours @ 10am
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22322 Collins Street, Woodland Hills, CA 91367   •   22555 Oxnard Street, Woodland Hills, CA 91367

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