It Begins in the Classroom

Bobcat Families!

With school in full swing, and our children actively engaged in learning, the real business of getting to work to support Don Benito has started.

At Back to School Night, you have made the first step in connecting with your child’s teacher and fellow families. As you have learned, the classroom is a unique microcosm of activity where discoveries are made, horizons are expanded and a lifelong love of learning develops. Don Benito PTA offers key support for both parent and teacher in some crucial ways and you are welcome and encouraged to become a part of that support.

IMG_3381-X3Our Room Parent program, led by Stacey Fargnoli, is a valuable contribution to the classroom experience. Room parents engage with teacher and parent to organize class activities, coordinate parent involvement in events such as Autumn Carnival, Read-a-Thon, Jog-a-Thon, and many other activities on campus. Many teachers tell me they wouldn’t know what to do without their room parents and we are so thankful for their valuable work every day. If you have a room parent already in place in your child’s classroom this year, please take a moment to thank them for what they do. They are very deserving of our support and of our gratitude. If your classroom does not yet have a room parent volunteer, please consider stepping forward. I’ve been a room parent myself and I’ve made lifelong friends with the fellow parents in my child’s classroom. I found it to be truly a rewarding experience. For more information about being a room parent, email

Our Science Docent program, led by Chris Swan, engages students in the many facets of physical and computer science. Science docents do not directly teach curriculum per se, but they do assist with teacher lessons and lead science activities in the Science Center or in the classroom as needed. Our Science Center, developed completely by donations and your PTA dollars, is a wonderful lab for discovery and we work hard each year to ensure we meet the needs of all teachers on campus. We strive to recruit a science docent in each classroom, and you can be involved by emailing for more information.

11144410_1018327471540680_6944360487283344540_oSimilarly, the Art Docent program, led by Pamela Lewis and Michele Browning, rely on classroom support to engage and foster appreciation of art and the techniques of art-making. Teachers engage with our program in support of Common Core curriculum and art docents foster the necessary assistance that keep engagement levels high. The Art Studio, like the Science Center, is fully funded by PTA dollars. For more information on how to be an art docent in your child’s classroom, email

IMG_1507-X3Lastly, the all-new Literacy Lab, led by Allison Hershberg and Tracy Ackeret, seeks to support and improve reading proficiency in all grades, where it is needed most. This year, we are proud to partner with Reading Partners, a non-profit organization committed to unlock student potential by raising reading achievement. However, this noble effort does not happen without the gracious support of those who give of their time to tutor children. For those that volunteer, all training is be provided within the Lab and we can work with a variety of schedules and availability. I promise you, if you do nothing else on campus this year, this opportunity is one that will enrich the lives of the children you tutor, forever. Contact to get started.

The love of learning begins in the classroom, and Don Benito PTA is your partner to ensure that your child receives the most of his or her educational experience while at our school. I encourage you to embrace this time with your child and to support your classroom and teacher, whenever possible.

Go Bobcats!
Scott Harden
Don Benito PTA