Tue08192014

News

Candidates finalized for schools, councils

Candidates finalized for schools, councils


Election season is officially in full swing, as eligible candidates for various city council and school district seats met Friday’s filing deadline set by the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters.

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Schools

Local tutoring center earns kudos in parent magazine's reader poll

Local tutoring center earns kudos in parent magazine's reader poll


Courtesy of Kobad Bugwadia
Mathnasium’s fourth-grade participants, from left, Jenna Haynie, Maelle Allanic, Tanish Gupta, Hamza Raza and David Chan, join instructors to celebrate their achievements in the tutoring center’s national TriMathlon this ...

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Community

Back to School: Tips, kits and a poem

Back to School: Tips, kits and a poem

Los Altos teachers are readying their rooms this week for the coming onslaught of students, and parents are digging back out lunch boxes and pencil cases (do we still use those?) And here in the newsroom, Town Crier writers offered a slate of back-to...

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Sports

Tyler Johnson: From hills to Heat

Tyler Johnson: From hills to Heat


Courtesy of NBAE/Getty Images
Shooting guard Tyler Johnson, a St. Francis High graduate from Mountain View, signed with the Miami Heat last week.

Signed by the Miami Heat as an undrafted free agent last week, rookie Tyler Johnson faces an uphill ba...

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Comment

Really, why the, eh, consolidation?

The recent merger (consolidation?) of the newly formed Friends of Los Altos (FOLA) and the 14-year-old civic organization Los Altos Neighborhood Network (LANN) left us puzzled.

A July 28 press release, which did not state plainly that the merger fol...

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Special Sections

Globetrotting – one glass at a time

Globetrotting – one glass at a time


Christine Moore/Special to the Town Crier
Take a tour of the world from your own picnic table with a selection of regional wines, above. Argentina’s white wines, left, pair well with a choriza pizza (see recipe on page 35).

I’m taking a...

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Business

Torrey Pines Bank names regional president

Torrey Pines Bank names regional president


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Torrey Pines Bank recently named Fred Voss its regional president for the Bay Area. The bank has branches at 20 First St. in Los Altos, above, and in Oakland and Southern California.

Torrey Pines Bank last week appointed ...

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Books

People

SHERRY DYCE BARBA

SHERRY DYCE BARBA

Sherry Dyce Barba, dear wife of Peter Barba, and a longtime resident of Los Altos, passed away peacefully on July 27, 2014, at The Forum, in Cupertino. She was surrounded by loving family members and visited continuously in her last weeks by a legi...

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Travel

Bergama bound: A visit to newest World Heritage site

Bergama bound: A visit to newest World Heritage site


Photo Eren GÖknar/ Special to the Town Crier
The amphitheater in Turkey’s ancient city of Pergamon, now known as Bergama, overlooks the Bakirçay River valley, left. The city’s ruins also include the Temple of Trajan.

It was 90 F during t...

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Stepping Out

No ‘Water’ shortage in Mtn. View


Kevin Berne/Special to the Town Crier
Elliot (Miles Gaston Villanueva) struggles to understand Odessa’s (Zilah Mendoza) online activity in TheatreWorks’ regional premiere of the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama “Water by the Spoonful....

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Spiritual Life

Spiritual Briefs

Meditation group meets at Foothills Congregational

A Weekly Meditation Practice group meets 7-8:15 a.m. Tuesdays at Foothills Congregational Church, 461 Orange Ave., Los Altos.

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Magazine

Festival features fun for everyone

Festival features fun for everyone


TOWN CRIER FILE PHOTO
The Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival boasts more than 375 craft and arts booths.

This weekend’s 35th annual Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival promises to be jam-packed with fun activities for just about everyone. The eve...

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Students helping students with conflicts at St. Nicholas School


St. Nicholas School students Alyson Perna and Mattie Carasciaro resolve a conflict on the playground with conflict manager Lauren Cheek.

The shrill of the bell fills the teeming playground at St. Nicholas School, in Los Altos Hills. Children run in all directions back to their classrooms. Three second-grade girls flag down an eighth-grade student, wearing a bright orange T-shirt with the words "Conflict Manager" across the back.

The orange shirts serve as a beacon on school grounds for those who have a conflict to resolve.

Early last August, the faculty was introduced to a conflict resolution program called "Tribes." The program focuses on building a stronger classroom community and aims to reduce stress and conflict. It is hoped that a safe emotional, physical and intellectual environment will be provided for students.

"Some parents were interested in starting a conflict resolution program and the school was very interested in doing the same," said Nicole Quinn, a second-grade teacher and Tribes coordinator at St. Nicholas.

Tribes is currently administered though Center Source Systems, in Santa Rosa. The program is used extensively in Bay Area public and private schools.

"It is a process that can be used by anyone, in any age group," said Jeanne Mancour, Tribes training services coordinator.

St. Nicholas is the first South Bay school to fully implement the Tribes program, according to Michelle Sklar, St. Nicholas publicity chairman.

"Tribes teaches students the life and communication skills necessary to build and maintain healthy relationships," said St.Nicholas principal Mary Williams.

"In addition, (Tribes) helps all students to feel safe and valued for their uniqueness."

Tribes is a step-by-step process to achieve specific goals. The students are taught four Tribes agreements: attentive listening; appreciation/no put downs; mutual respect; and the right to pass.

Students also learn a set of skills so that they may develop more long-term ways to deal effectively with conflict when it arises.

Students are taught to use I-messages to communicate and solve their problems. For example, "I feel (emotion) when (action or behavior) because (reason for emotion) and I would like (something to happen)."

Eighth-grade and fourth-grade students at St. Nicholas, elected by their peers, are trained as conflict managers. A representative from Tribes teaches the conflict mediators resolution skills.

This is part of the of the Conflict Resolution Educational Services and Training (CREST) program presented in conjunction with the Tribes program.

"The students in my class have really enjoyed having a student help them as opposed to a teacher," Quinn said. "It empowers the students to give peers support."

"I expected more conflicts but we have only had two or three. I think that it took a while for the kids to get used to having someone on the playground that could help solve conflicts, but it's been good,"said eighth-grader Lauren Cheek, a conflict manager.

Chip Kraemer, another eighth-grade conflict manager has learned from his experience.

"I have learned that I guess I don't remember as much of being a kid. I have figured out there are lots of complex problems, even with little kids. It is nice to have possible solutions."

Kraemer graduates this year from St. Nicholas, but hopes to contuine being involved in conflict resolution programs while in high school.

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