Pasadena Area Kindergarten and Elementary School Options Night Event-10/12/17

K Elem Night FINAL

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    Saint Mark’s Episcopal School’s front offices are housed in a stately, renovated home on a residential street in Altadena. It is private and welcoming, situated on a lovely campus. Located on several acres, the school’s ambience is graceful and spacious.   I visited the school on a sunny morning earlier this week. As a first-time…
    Tags: school, schools, gabriel, pasadena, private, san, altadena
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    * Updated on Dec. 29, 2016. Walden School's head of school is now Terra Toscano and Scott Turner is the admissions director. The Walden School in Pasadena is a Pre-K-6th progressive school whose namesake is the famous Walden Pond from Thoreau’s “On Walden Pond”. The school, like Thoreau’s personal journey at Walden Pond, embraces personal…
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    * July 8, 2015 update: Exciting News! Sequoyah School will add a high school Fall 2016. Click here for more information. The minute I walked into Sequoyah School in Pasadena the I-Wish-I-Had-Gone-Here-As-A-Kid feeling swept over me. Because the school was founded 54 years ago, some very lucky people did attend Sequoyah, including its director, Josh…
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  • 42
    Tags: kindergarten, schools, independent, elementary, area, school

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Los Angeles Area Elementary School Admission Directors Kindergarten Fair, Sept. 27, 2017

LAAIS K Fair

LAAIS KFair 2

 

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        What:  Elementary School Admissions Directors Fall Kindergarten Fair, 2015 When:  September 24, 2015,  7:00PM - 8:00PM Where: The Willows Community School, 8509 Higuera Street, Culver City, CA 90232 This event will offer information from 45 independent (private) schools in and around Los Angeles. For more information, click on Elementary School Admissions Directors   Don't miss a…
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  • 70
    Hi Everyone! There are two private (independent) school fairs in May 2016. The expert Sandy Eiges of LA School Scout gives a great overview below of what to expect when you attend a kindergarten or secondary school fair. If you're just getting started with your school search, these events can help you gather information all…
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    Tags: fair, kindergarten, angeles, los, elementary, area, laais, school, easd
  • 60
      I'm updating this previous post since I've been hearing that this year (2016-17) is one of the most competitive for L.A. private elementary school admissions. That probably means more kids will end up on wait-lists than in a less competitive year. A frequently asked question is, "Does a wait-list notification really mean NO or…
    Tags: school, elementary, private, angeles, los

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How Hollywood’s Private School Moms Follow Drop-Off Dress Code in The Hollywood Reporter

The "It Shoe" at some of L.A.'s top private schools. Gucci's Princeton Loafer. $995.00
The “It Shoe” at some of L.A.’s top private schools. Gucci’s Princeton Loafer. $995.00

It’s Fashion Week in NYC and some days it can feel like Fashion Week just walking onto an L.A. private school campus. The Hollywood Reporter gets the scoop on who’s wearing what at L.A. private schools. And, you’ll find out how I fell victim to fitting in with the “momiform” at our former school. –Christina

 

Please note: We are working on the Third Edition of Beyond The Brochure: An Insider’s Guide To Private Elementary Schools In Los Angeles. Publication date anticipated to be mid-September! 

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The Hollywood Reporter Schools Issue 2017

Screen Shot 2014-03-06 at 6.02.07 PMHi Friends,

Happy August! Check out The Hollywood Reporter’s Schools Issue 2017. They conducted a survey to find out which schools are most popular among entertainment industry families and there’s a piece on feeder schools i.e. the best route to get to the school you want for your kid. The scoop on big money fundraising at L.A. private schools is covered too. Here’s the list of religious schools where Hollywood parents send their kids.  And it wouldn’t be Hollywood without the paparazzi-proof private schools.  Excited that Beyond The Brochure is noted as an expert resource for this issue! –Christina

 

Keep up with all the latest L.A. private school news, events and more on Facebook!

 

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    It's Fashion Week in NYC and some days it can feel like Fashion Week just walking onto an L.A. private school campus. The Hollywood Reporter gets the scoop on who's wearing what at L.A. private schools. And, you'll find out how I fell victim to fitting in with the "momiform" at our former school. --Christina…
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  • 47
    If you've read this blog for awhile, you know I think the culture of a school really matters. For me, it's not just an aside or something to wonder about casually. Unfortunately, I learned the hard way that school culture matters in ways big and small, in ways you won't even think about until you're…
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  • 43
    We're excited to have Lisa Marfisi's  words of wisdom on the blog! Lisa has been an L.A. private school admissions director for 15 years (see her full bio below).  So, you’re applying to private school and you think you have a plan.  You’ve visited many schools, narrowed your choices and applied. You have edited your answers…
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  • 40
    Harvard-Westlake. It’s one of the schools we’ve all heard about, known for academic excellence, rigor and college placement.  If our kids can make it there, they’ll make it anywhere… Admit it or not, there are plenty of parents in L.A. that choose their preschools based on their dream of sending their kids to Harvard-Westlake. They believe…
    Tags: school, private, schools, l.a

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STEM3 Academy: For Poets and Physicists

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A few months ago, I met with Dr. Ellis Crasnow, the head of school Stem3 Academy for a tour of the campus and a chat about the program. Dr. Crasnow holds a PhD from USC and has taught math, science and English at the college and high school levels. He is friendly and low-key, a welcoming presence at the school. We met at the Valley Glen campus, but Ellis explained that the school also includes a Culver City campus that has expanded to include middle and high school. STEM3 Academy is a school for kids grades 3-12 with social and/or learning differences. STEM3 Academy is a school under The Help Group. STEM is short for science, technology, engineering and math.

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STEM3 Academy School has a warm, nurturing feeling, making you feel like you want to roll up your sleeves and get involved in any of the various classroom projects, even if you’re not a STEM person (I’m definitely not!). Ellis knows the details of every project and he knows every kid’s name and what they’re working on, from coding or expository writing to robotics and a 3D printing project. He explained big concepts and project details, making them come to life with explanations of real-world applications happening in student labs. When I asked Ellis if students must be focused on technology he told me the school welcomes non-STEM students too. He is looking for curious, motivated students in all disciplines, including the arts.

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Here’s my Q&A with Ellis. I hope you’ll check out this amazing school!–Christina

1. Your school is very impressive! Why do you think the place is buzzing with such positive energy? The classes are directed towards student interests and skills—they have an interest in classes like robotics, engineering and design, cybersecurity, and computer programming. In addition, the way in which the classes are taught also plays to their strengths rather than their weaknesses. Classes are hands-on, and students engage in real-world projects so that what they learn is not only of interest to them but also relevant to the world in which they live. That generates excitement.

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2. What kind of student does Stem3 Academy seek to admit? We look for students who are passionate, engaged, interested, who want to learn and try, who are makers and builders. They might be writers or artists, scientists or math whizzes. What they’re interested in matters less than that they are interested. Our goal is to provide them the resources to excel in their area of interest and passion.

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3. What are some of the traits you believe will help a student succeed at Stem3 Academy? Students who are collaborative and creative, who are independent thinkers, who persevere and persist, who are positive and optimistic about their own future and their prospects will be successful. Also those who are strong academically or those who are tactile or kinesthetic learners, or those who don’t learn in traditional ways (by being lectured to or rote learning)—they will all do well with us.

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4. Can you tell us a bit about college acceptances your students have received? Our first year as an independent school, we graduated 5 seniors all of whom went to college. This year (in 2 weeks’ time!) we will graduate 14 seniors who have already been accepted to UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Riverside, Cal State Northridge, Cal State Long Beach, Cal State Channel Islands, Woodbury University, Parsons School of Design, Bard College, and many others.

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5. Do you have to be a STEM kid to thrive at Stem3 Academy? No, not at all. We would as happily accept a poet as a physicist. What matters more is the passion a student might have for drawing or drama, or writing. We will support their passion no matter the area of interest. The importance of STEM is due to the overwhelming influence that technology has had on every area of human endeavor—it has changed both what we do and how we do it, and that is as true for an artist as an architect.

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6. How is Stem3 Academy different from public school programs for kids on the spectrum or those with ADHD? We distinguish ourselves in a variety of ways. First, our focus is on learning, not on teaching. Classes are student-focused, not teacher-focused, so that the emphasis is on student collaboration and engagement in making meaning and in learning. Secondly, there is a focus on the development of real-world hands-on projects, which develop student skills in collaboration, communication and creativity. Third, we encourage students to be active learners in class in doing work when teachers can support them, and do passive work (reading, research) for homework when they can work on their own. This is the reverse of what happens in public school programs. Fourth, we encourage the use of technology in all subjects and have rich resources for student use on campus: 3-D printers and pens, CNC mill, DSL cameras and video cameras, drawing pads for digital animation, Go-pro style cameras, sound mixing table, green screen, microphones, tripods, 3 different robotics platforms, etc.

Admissions at STEM3 Academy is on a rolling basis and tuition is $34,000 per year. For more information, visit www.stem3academy.org

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  • 63
      Hi Friends! Happy Summer! Hope you're enjoying our hot summer here in L.A. We just returned from my son's basketball tournament in Las Vegas where it hit 113 degrees. That's just too hot! I posted the team's photo on Beyond The Brochure's Facebook page. If you're reading this post, you are probably anticipating the…
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  • 63
    This is the BIG WEEK. Finally after months of waiting, schools will notify parents about elementary school admissions decisions on Friday, March 18. If you applied for secondary school, or if you applied to Pasadena schools, you most likely found out yesterday.  Friday is the BIG DAY for L.A., you been waiting for since you…
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  • 62
      I'm updating this previous post since I've been hearing that this year (2016-17) is one of the most competitive for L.A. private elementary school admissions. That probably means more kids will end up on wait-lists than in a less competitive year. A frequently asked question is, "Does a wait-list notification really mean NO or…
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