Archive for August, 2016

TK-6 Afternoon Dismissal Guidelines

Our afternoon carpool is getting a little smoother each week. Thank you for helping us keep everyone safe. Here is a reminder of some important procedures to follow. Thank you for your patience and cooperation.

  • We ask that drivers who have only one rider to please arrive at the beginning of carpool. This allows us to get more cars through the line quickly.
  • Drivers who have multiple riders should plan to arrive about 3:05.
  • We strongly encourage you to use the carpool line. Walkers at the crosswalk and at the gym door slows down the process for everyone. If you need to walk up and get your student, please arrive after 3:10 and go to the gym door.
  • Always use the crosswalk.
  • Please hang your carpool sign from your rear view mirror and leave it there until after your child is in the vehicle.
  • Pull your car up as close as possible to the car in front of you to allow more cars to get off the street.
  • When you get to your station number, pull up so that your front passenger window is lined up with the station number sign.
  • Please be watchful for our safety patrol members and others.

Principal Coffee Schedule

Parents are invited to meet with their campus principal for an informal Q&A about their grade.  This session is for general questions, comments, and suggestions, not for personal student or teacher specific issues.  For the latter, please make an appointment with your principal privately.

801 Campus (TK-6), 8:15-9:15am in the Media Center

  • Kindergarten: Tuesday, September 6th
  • 6th Grade: Wednesday, September 7th
  • Transitional Kindergarten: Thursday, September 8th
  • 5th Grade: Tuesday, September 13th
  • 1st Grade: Thursday, September 22nd
  • 3rd Grade: Tuesday, September 27th
  • 2nd Grade: Wednesday, September 28th
  • 4th Grade: Thursday, September 29th

1101 Campus (7-12th Grade), 8:15-9:15am in the Conference Room

  • 7th Grade: Tuesday, September 6th
  • 8th Grade: Thursday, September 8th
  • 9th Grade: Tuesday, September 13th
  • 10th Grade: Thursday, September 22nd
  • 11th Grade: Tuesday, September 27th
  • 12th Grade: Tuesday, October 4th

How Star Wars Impacted Courses at GRACE

This post is by Carol Gehringer, the TK-6th Grade Media Coordinator and originally was published on the 21st Century GRACE Blog on June 15, 2016.


It all started when I [Carol] saw the latest Star Wars movie over Christmas break 2015. In addition to the famous C3PO & R2D2, there was a new robot companion, Bb-8. Of course, it was an endearing droid, and a new “toy” for Christmas.

When I logged onto the Barnes and Noble website to order some books for our library. I saw this Ozobot, tagged as “one of the world’s smallest programmable robots, measuring just over 1 inch in height & diameter.” The description claimed it was a learning tool to teach children the basics of coding and programming.

That got me to thinking . . . what if we went beyond the Hour of Code?

During the 2014-2015 school year, our technology teacher introduced Hour of Code to our 3rd-5th graders. We repeated it for our 3rd-6th graders during the 2015-2016 school year, adding an unpluggable lesson to the Hour of Code lesson, during the 4th quarter. During the current school year, we plan to observe National Computer Science Week/Hour of Code in December.

Those events led me to a discussion with our principals, our technology teacher, and our 6th-grade team. Where previously we offered only a multimedia elective in 6th grade, now we are planning an introduction to computer science (focusing on coding) as the new elective — in addition to our multimedia curriculum.

This additional class will build more interest in our new computer science classes in middle & high school. Plus, we are planning a tech club next year for 5th and 6th graders. That way if a 6th grader couldn’t take the new elective, the student would still be introduced to coding and some fun tech stuff in the club.

We are especially excited that the tech club and coding elective class will be taught by women, and a number of girls are signing up for the elective!

Introducing the GRACE Maker Club

The GRACE Maker Club is open to all Crossroads Campus students


To allow for a time of intentional exploration into different facets of making, building, and creating in terms of own interests. Encourage students to learn on their own, learn by making, learn problem solving skills, communication skills, collaboration skills, and be creative.


Every month or two months the club meets, an “expert” in a field of making/creating will give a short presentation on what they do and how it works, and then students are given free time and materials to begin and work on their own projects for the coming month.

Types of Stuff

Building and launching rockets, 3D printing, recording music, programming and bots (these are all potential things that are tentatively confirmed – actual dates have yet to be set for each presentation), and more.

First Meeting

September 7th, after school, in the Crossroads Campus Media Center. We will discuss format and layout of the club, rules, ideas, potential other meetings.

How Parents Can Help

If you have a skill to present on that is “Maker” oriented, we are still accepting potential guests. To get an idea of what students are interested in, the areas students expressed an interest in via survey last spring were:

  • 3D printing (covered – Pete Smith and Chad Walters)
  • Radio/podcast, programming and bots (covered – Mark Bianchi)
  • Screen Printing (probably covered – Elizabeth Walters)

Also, we need to stock our Maker closet. Any type of making item and material would be really helpful.

Michaelsen Minute – August/September 2016

Welcome to the 2016/2017 school year at GRACE from Miss Lisa, your TK-6th Grade Hot Lunch Coordinator!

Ordering Hot Lunch

This year, ordering will open on the third Thursday and close the following Tuesday of each month for the next month’s hot lunch.  Remember to click the submit button after you complete your order and then scroll to the bottom of the form and click on the payment button.  If you’ve done it correctly, two things will happen – you will get a confirmation email and your student’s lunch calendar on RenWeb will be highlighted in blue. If you need help with ordering lunch or have other questions, please email me at Please note that I cannot change your order after the ordering window closes at 4:00pm.

This year, we are trying to incorporate more choices into our hot lunch calendar. As a result, the same vendors are not always the same days as they have been and they might not always be the same day of the week. Pay attention to the menu each day and note the days that your student has lunch on your home calendar. Please go over the menu with your student because sometimes they do not want what you have selected for them.

Ice Cream/Frozen Treat Day

We will have our first Ice Cream/Frozen Treat Day on Friday, September 2nd (we have options for all allergy students). Students with August and September birthdays will be honored in chapel and given a certificate for a free birthday ice cream. Students not celebrating a birthday may purchase a frozen treat for $1.00 after they’ve eaten their lunch. Ice Cream Day is usually the first Friday of every month, but there will be a sign in the carpool line to remind you.

Vendor Highlights

  • PDQ meals feature their own farm-raised antibiotic-free chicken in meals made fresh to order.   Their chicken is delicious and their salads are gluten free.
  • Some days feature a salad bar with nitrate-free ham and turkey.
  • We have added gluten free grilled nuggets to our Chick-fil-a days.
  • Pei Wei meals are MSG free.
  • Jersey Mikes uses whole wheat bread and their turkey and roast beef (roasted in house) are nitrate-free.
  • We will be offering Whole Foods at least once a month and their meats are nitrate-free as well.
  • We will cook at least one to two times a month because the kids love it when we do.
  • I also purchase fresh fruits or veggies as a side for our Monday-Thursday lunches every week.

Got Milk?

Even if you don’t purchase hot lunch, your kids can always purchase antibiotic and hormone free 1% milk.  Each glass is 50 cents and comes with free refills.  If your child forgets lunch, sometimes we may have an extra meal; if they receive that, I will bill your account.  If you do bring their lunch after drop-off, please leave it to the front desk before their scheduled lunch time.  Please pack silverware and napkins for them if they’re bringing lunch from home.

Volunteers are Still Needed

We still need volunteers to serve in the kitchen.  It is a great way to serve our school, see your kids during their school day, and a wonderful opportunity to get to know other parents and grandparents. Volunteers serve from 10:15am – 12:30pm. The biggest need is on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. Please let me know if you’re willing to serve. There is also a need for weekly, bi-weekly, fill-in, and special event (pancake day) volunteers.

As always, it is a joy to serve your kids and get to see them and love on them each school day.  Thank you for being a part of the GRACE family.

Lisa Michaelsen
TK-6 Lunch Coordinator

New! Homecoming Game T-Shirt

What does this t-shirt have in common with the following?

  • 0816 Hoco Shirt GraphicStadium Seating
  • Athletic Sound System
  • New athletic equipment
  • New athletic uniforms
  • Batting cages
  • Press box/Scoreboard

Proceeds from the sale of this t-shirt and other Eagle Club activities help fund key additions to our school’s athletic program.  For only $12.00 you can get a new 2016 Homecoming Game T-Shirt and show your school spirit.

Your purchase will help the Eagles Club in their continuing effort to add new and wonderful athletic resources to our school. Now that’s school spirit!

So order your NEW 2016 Homecoming T-Shirt today.  Available  thru September 8th for students, families and anyone who plans to show their orange Eagle pride at this year’s homecoming football game on September 30th.

Adult and youth sizes are available and you don’t have to be an athlete to get one! Proceeds from the sale of this shirt will help support Eagles Club as they support the needs of GRACE Athletics. Order one here and wear it at homecoming (September 30th) to show your Eagle Pride!

Order via this link:

Men of GRACE – Donuts For Dads

Calling all dads, granddads and Staff/Faculty spouses! The Men of GRACE will kick off the new school year with their traditional Donuts for Dads event, held the first Friday of every month in the Crossroads Campus Lunch Room from 7:30-8:00am.

Donuts for Dads is an informal event; drop in when you can, leave when you must. At the September 2nd event, immediately following the fellowship time, the chaplain from the NC State football team, Al Byrd, will speak to those in attendance from 8:00-8:30am.

At the September 2nd event, there will also be a discussion of starting a Men’s Bible Study for the school year.

Crossroads Parent Orientation Schedule

Schedule for Parent Orientation Night, Grades 7 – 12, Monday, August 15, 2016

6:30 Start in your student’s 1st period class and continue through their schedule* until your designated lunch period. After lunch, continue to follow your student’s schedule until the final bell.
7:26 7th & 8th grade “lunch” – meet in the Chapel to hear from Head of School Eric Bradley, Campus Principal Mandy Gill and representatives from the GRACE PTF
7:40 9th & 10th grade “lunch” – meet in the Chapel to hear from Head of School Eric Bradley, Campus Principal Mandy Gill and representatives from the GRACE PTF
7:54 11th & 12th grade “lunch” – meet in the Chapel to hear from Head of School Eric Bradley, Campus Principal Mandy Gill and representatives from the GRACE PTF
8:32 Final Bell – You made it to the end of the day! Drive safely on your way home!

* You can print your student’s schedule via RenWeb. Log in at (our district code is GRACE-NC). Click on Student Information and then click on Schedule. Please note that RenWeb does not play well with some internet browsers. Firefox and Safari seem to be the most reliable. We know that RenWeb does not function well with Google Chrome. If you see a blank page when you select Schedule, please try a different browser.

Classroom Bell Schedule for Parent Orientation Night, Crossroads Campus

 6:30 – 6:40  Period 1  Period 1  Period 1
 6:44 – 6:54  Period 2   Period 2   Period 2
6:58 – 7:08  Period 3 Period 3 Period 3
 7:12 – 7:22  Period 4  Period 4  Period 4
 7:26 – 7:36  Meet in Chapel  Period 5  Period 5
 7:40 – 7:50  Period 6  Meet in Chapel  Period 6
 7:54 – 8:04  Period 7  Period 7  Meet in Chapel
 8:08 – 8:18 Period 8  Period 8  Period 8
 8:22 – 8:32  Period 9  Period 9  Period 9


Traffic Tips – Crossroads Campus

Thank you to all our parents for being patient as we get into our annual car pool rhythm. We promise you, it will get better. The construction on Buck Jones Road has presented us with new challenges; the tips below are intended to help you get off of Buck Jones Road as quickly and painlessly as possible.

When to Arrive for Pick-up

  • It takes 7-12th grade students a while to wrap up and exit the building.
  • Work with your student to determine the best time for you to plan your arrival.
  • If you are here in advance of the 3:15 bell, most likely you will be waiting a while for your student to exit the building, which can back up the car-pool line.

Picking Up a Student at the Activity Building

  • Students who have last period in Activity Building should be picked up at the Activity Building.
  • Parents can exit to Buck Jones Road going to the right at the back exit or follow the carpool line around the front of the building and exit at the light (Note: the “right carpool lane” is for through traffic).
  • Note, if your student starts the day in the Activity Building, you may drop them off there instead of the front of the building.

Using the Athletic Shuttle

GRACE runs an after-school shuttle between our two campus buildings and the athletic field. If your student-athlete needs to get to the athletic field or the gymnasium in the TK-6 building, they may ride the shuttle.  The shuttle picks up/drops off at the Activity Building.

Trying to Coordinate an Athletic Carpool

Athletic Carpool Drivers should select a location in which to park between the main building and the Activity Building so that student-athletes do not need to cross the carpool line to reach you.

Need to get to Walnut Street (toward downtown Cary) or Route 1/64 (toward Apex)

  • From the Crossroads Campus, go straight across Buck Jones Road at the light at Nottingham.
  • From Nottingham, you can turn left at Donaldson Drive which will intersect Walnut at the traffic light by the Cook-Out and Route 1/64 on-ramp.
  • Stay on Nottingham and it will intersect Walnut one block closer to downtown Cary if you are headed that direction.

Need to get to Interstate 40/440

  • Toward Clayton: Follow instructions above to get to Walnut Street via Nottingham/Donaldson. Turn left onto Walnut Street.
  • Toward Durham: Take a right out of the parking lot and head down Buck Jones Road. Turn left at Farmgate (the first left after the GRACE Athletic Field). At the end of Farmgate, turn left onto Western Boulevard (the name changes to Cary Town Boulevard once you cross I-40). The on-ramp to I-40 westbound is immediately on your right.

High School Seniors

Seniors may exit their parking area towards D&S and the traffic light without getting into the carpool line.

High School Ignite Retreat – Important Reminder

We are just one day away from the official start of the school year and a week away from the Ignite Retreat!  Wow!  The Crossroads Faculty/Staff spend time praying for each student by name and for our time at Camp Bob Cooper.  This is going to be a great start to the 2016-2017 school year.

Required Forms (Due THIS WEEK)

Please bring the following forms to Mrs. Allison (the Crossroads Receptionist) TOMORROW.

All three of these forms are required to attend Ignite.  Please make sure to get them all in this week!

Packing List

  • 2-3 Pairs of Shorts (dress code length)
  • 4-5 T-Shirts (GRACE appropriate: neat, clean, modest)
  • Towel (one for bathing and one for swimming)
  • Bathing Suit
  • Swim shirt (girls and guys are required to wear a dark shirt while swimming)
  • Ladies swim shirts should cover their bathing suit bottoms
  • Tennis shoes
  • Sleeping bag
  • Pillow
  • Water bottle (please label with your name)
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug spray
  • Water shoes (optional)
  • Bible
  • 3-4 Pens
  • Sunglasses/Hat
  • Snacks for between meals
  • A small amount of cash (if you are wanting to shop at the camp store)