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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz, CA

March 17, 2016
Use the Political Season to Help Children Understand Economics

Letting Happiness Flourish In the Classroom

Christine: Long Term Drought Impact

Archeology Work Day

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  Use the Political Season to Help Children Understand Economics

(A Mar 16) Shamrocks.jpgHappy St.Patrick's Day!

In this crazy political season, strong opinions are swirling.  Sleuthing out facts on which to evaluate opinions is a challenge.  We listen to or watch pundits of one affiliation, then switch to pundits of the other affiliation. Most of us discount the extreme wings of any persuasion. Wow, such opposing ideas!  Where do we get "just the facts"?  Who and what are right for my family and also for most citizens? 

One of the most difficult areas to master, and I've observed that it's often equally difficult for those running for office, is economics.  I understand "shopping local" so that more money circulates and stays local and that this benefits my immediate community, my family and me.  Yet we hear every day that we're living in a global economy.  That demands more knowledge than I have. You too? 

The Marginal Revolution University offers 13 free online courses on a multitude of economic topics via videos offered in 3 to 15 minute lessons.  Open the homepage and scroll down the entire page to view the breadth of topics.  It's impressive.  I'm going to listen to some of these videos. Are you?

If you would like to explain capitalism, communism and socialism to your children, offers a straightforward explanation.  Click here for good refresher essays on American government. This website appears to be non-agendized.

Being/feeling happy is good for us.  Jessica Lahey takes Emma Seppala's book on happiness and applies it to what happens in the classroom.  Are we happy in our homes, workplaces, classrooms?  If not, what can we do, each of us? A teacher may have the answer.

(A Buttons) Button_Weekend.jpgPlease recommend our newsletter to new friends so they won't miss a few tidbits of wisdom from our author contributors, and as always our many fun events! We cannot fit them all into this newsletter.  There are more on the online calendar.

Have a great weekend and many happy moments! Parmalee


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  Letting Happiness Flourish In the Classroom

ByJessica Lahey

When I look out into my classroom, and take the emotional temperature of my students, I'm usually checking for engagement. I want to make sure they feel supported, are interested in the lesson at hand, and that the lesson is relevant to each student.

But happiness? I stopped looking for happiness long ago. I see it periodically, when the conditions are perfect, and the stars align just so. When happiness strikes in my classroom, I relish it as I would any other rare anomaly, like thundersnow or a two-faced calf. Regular sightings, however, seem too much to hope for given the inhospitable climate in many American classrooms.

(A Mar 16) Book_HappinessTrack.jpgEmma Seppala, however, the author of "The Happiness Track," and science director of Stanford University's Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education, has not lost hope. Dr. Seppala admits that yes, happiness can be a rare beast in our classrooms, but we can create and protect learning conditions in which happiness can flourish.

Happiness, Dr. Seppala explained in an email, is not something we can afford to lose at home or in our classrooms, as it forms the very foundation of deep, meaningful learning. Happy kids show up at school more able to learn because they tend to sleep better and may have healthier immune systems. Happy kids learn faster and think more creatively. Happy kids tend to be more resilient in the face of failures. Happy kids have stronger relationships and make new friends more easily.

Unfortunately, we put our children's happiness at risk when... Read on>>>>


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  Christine: Long Term Drought Impact

(A Mar 16) Rainstorm-pacificocean-billcockey.jpgI live in an area that is in the worst drought for over 1000 years. We are finally getting rain. I have been hearing that one season of rain won't fix a drought, and now I have first-hand knowledge that this is true. Yesterday we had 1.5 inches of rain (3.8 cm.). Today there are few puddles and no runoff. We are up to 41 inches of rain for the season and 7 inches for the last month. The last two weeks have been dry. The ground has seemed damp, but it is clearly very dry underneath as all that water just got sucked under. The ground isn't even muddy. Normally, over 1 inch of rain in 24 hours would make mud and puddles.

So, what happens in a long drought? Where is my mud? My little guy needs puddles for splashing. . .

I live in California. This is a region that has a dry summer and wet winters. Plant and animal life are adapted for our standard seasons which include months with no rainfall. However years with minimal rainfall will cause problems... Continue reading>>>>

Christine Cockey is a local mom and scientist who researches what's happening in the world of science and makes science easier to understand.  Keep up with her latest articles at Bill Cockey took this photo.


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  Archeology Work Day

State Park Castro Adobe
Help screen for artifacts and learn about the workings of an on-going archaeological dig
Date: 03/19 from 9:30am to 4:00pm
Admission Fees: Free admission (donations gratefully accepted)
Special Instructions: Old Adobe Road, off Larkin Valley Road

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Archeology Work Day

We need your help!  If you missed the first archaeology work day at the Castro Adobe or if you'd like to come back, we're happy to invite you to come out on Saturday, March 19th between 9:30 am - 4:00 pm to screen for artifacts and learn about the workings of an on-going archaeological dig. We still have buckets to process and can use your hands to get the job done.

Reserve your space today!  RSVP to Jorge Savala, Community Outreach Director,, or call (831) 429-1840 ext 110

Parking is limited, please carpool if possible. Bring a refillable water bottle and your own lunch.

We'll also be welcomed on a special tour conducted by Castro Interpreter Joseph Carr Ritchie at 11:00 am.  Plan to take an easy guided walk to hear the stories of the Pajaro Valley's past. See for yourself how the Castro Adobe has survived changes of nationality and ownership, occasional neglect and frequent remodeling, and even major earthquakes.

(AAA_Feb 2015) CastroAdobeHistoric.jpgA single choice can change the course of history. The Castro Adobe could have crumbled at a number of points in the last 160 years, but enough of those choices kept this one-of-a-kind family home standing. Is it luck?

Free admission (donations gratefully accepted). Limited parking (carpooling encouraged). This new state historic park is an active construction site, and is open only during scheduled events.

Events made possible by Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks and California State Parks.

Jorge Savala, Community Outreach Director, Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, Office: (831) 429-1840 ext 110

184 Old Adobe Road, Watsonville Map  Phone: 831-335-6318


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Pioneer Middle School 6-8, Open House3/19


Tara Redwood Ekementary TK-6, Open House 3/23


Mount Madonna PreK-12, Cultural Awareness Assembly K-5, 3/24 & 25


Chartwell School 1-12, Open House 4/5


All School Events

"Stress, Wellness and Spirituality: Everyday Satsang"

Ami Chen Mills

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03/26 1:30pm to 3:30pm


Learn simple, psycho-spiritual principles that cross boundaries of spiritual teachings and religions, while deepening our understanding of such traditions.



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Birding for Beginners
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  Birding for Beginners
State Park Henry Cowell
Date: 08/20/2017 from 8:00am to 10:00am
Details: A Walk in Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park with a Park Naturalist
City: Felton view all details >>
Book to Action: EYES WIDE OPEN
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  Book to Action: EYES WIDE OPEN
Santa Cruz Public Library
Date: 03/18/2016 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Ages: Adults
Details: Artivism: Join Paul Fleischman and inspiring young people in an exploration of activism through creative expression
City: Santa Crz Phone: (831) 427-7717 view all details >>
Clifford, the Big Red Dog
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  Clifford, the Big Red Dog
Golden State Fox Theatre
Date: 03/26/2016 at 2:00pm
Details: The 'big red dog,' a character beloved for generations, comes to life on stage in a BIG way in this interactive musical!
City: Monterey Phone: (831) 649-1070 x 21 view all details >>
Santa Cruz PaddleFest
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  Santa Cruz PaddleFest
Kayak Connection
Date: Every day (Mar 24-Mar 26)
Details: An event of these epic proportions needs lots of volunteers and spectators!
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
Happy St. Patrick's Day!
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  Happy St. Patrick's Day!
view all details >>
Sheep to Shawl
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  Sheep to Shawl
Live Earth Farm
Date: 03/18/2017 from 10:00am to 2:00pm
Details: Hands on demonstrations of every part of the process of making wool into clothing and art
City: Watsonville Phone: (831) 763-2448 view all details >>
Kids' Connection with Lorraine Pursell
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  Kids' Connection with Lorraine Pursell
Lorraine Pursell, M.A.
Date: Every Su, Mon, Tues, Wed, Th, Fri and Sa
Ages: All
Details: The 3 Greatest Gifts You Can Give Your Child
Phone: (808) 936-4370 view all details >>
Beginners' Genealogy Workshop
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  Beginners' Genealogy Workshop
Santa Cruz Library Downtown Branch
Date: 03/19/2016 from 1:00pm to 3:30pm
Ages: Adults
Details: Join us for a Beginners' Genealogy Workshop
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 427-7717 view all details >>
Swim Lessons in New Private Pool
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  Swim Lessons in New Private Pool
Seahorse Swim School
Date: Every day
Ages: 6 months and Up
Details: Swim lessons in Tiffany Harmon's Seahorse private pool
City: Aptos Phone: (831) 476-7946 view all details >>
Quarry Amphitheater Tours
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  Quarry Amphitheater Tours
Date: 03/17/2016 at 12:00pm
Special Instructions:
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
FREE Parents of Teens Support Group
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  FREE Parents of Teens Support Group
Positive Discipline Community Resources
Date: The last Wed of every month from 6:30pm to 8:00pm
Ages: Parents of Teens
Details: Transforming Lives through Respectful Relationships!
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 476-7284 view all details >>
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