Islandwood is next week! November 13–16

It’s going to be a little quieter around school next week when our fifth-graders take off for Islandwood, a 250-acre outdoor learning center on Bainbridge Island. This extraordinary program is offered to elementary school students throughout the Puget Sound region.

This is not just a camping trip, as the Islandwood team reminded us at a recent parent-info night: Islandwood is school, and the work our students do there is completely integrated with the Lowell fifth-grade curriculum. Our fifth-graders will have the chance to learn about a variety of science topics, develop a sense of environmental stewardship, connect with and learn about the wildlife of our diverse bioregion, and work together to solve problems as they learn.

Our fifth-grade classes from Lowell are heading to Islandwood November 13-16! Even if you are not a fifth-grade parent, you can support our campers by donating a pillow, a blanket or sleeping bag, or a set of basic toiletries. (We could probably use five each of those.) Contact Ms. Laura if you can help—especially if you have any connection to a business that might be able to help—or if you missed the info night and have questions about the upcoming trip.

Veteran’s Day Assembly and Reception, Thursday (11/9)

Lowell would like to invite veterans in our community to come and be honored at an assembly and informal reception this Thursday, November 10. (There is no school on Friday, November 11 in observance of Veterans Day.)

Veterans and their families are invited to attend a short reception at 2:15pm, followed by a school assembly from 2:50 to 3:20pm, where we will sing songs and a student will lead us in the Pledge of Allegiance. Veterans are invited to speak about their experiences if they wish.

For more information, email

Every cafeteria should have a dragon

Many thanks to Chris Sondreal (Theo’s dad) for the high-powered hefting and drill-bit mastery involved in getting our Lowell Dragon alighted (alit?) on the cafeteria wall. Make sure you check it out sometime!

According to a longtime student who was kibbitzing nearby, many “FIRE” tickets may get affixed to this eventually. Those reports are unconfirmed.

The pride of the fleet!

We put out the call a little while back when the Lowell Food Pantry refrigerator had apparently given up the ghost—and now we’ve got a brand new one, the H.M.S. Frigidaire, pictured below humming away in the cafeteria!

Thank you to everyone who scrambled to find a fridge and look for alternate solutions—and a GIANT THANK-YOU to donor Kathy Cochran, who stepped up and got this beautiful new fridge.

If you’re not familiar with the Food Pantry, this is an ongoing program at Lowell, operated in partnership with the University District Food Bank. Each Friday, volunteers meet in the Lowell cafeteria after the start of school and help distribute weekend-meal bags for Lowell kids. Since over 60% of our students receive free or reduced cost lunch, and approximately a third are housing-insecure (living in shelters or other temporary housing), the Food Pantry is hugely important to us. For some of our kids, these food bags are their only reliable food over the weekend.

(If you’d like to volunteer to help the Food Pantry, contact

Want to help spread the word about Lowell?

When you’re talking to people outside of our school community, it often helps to have some quick facts about Lowell.

Our school has changed a lot in the last few years—it now *is* the downtown elementary school, with approximately a third of our kids living in homeless shelters or transitional housing (although that number fluctuates, given the instability of that population). Feel free to share this flier anywhere to help inspire support for Lowell.

Download the flier.

Housing for All Coalition

If you were at the General Meeting last week, you know that our PTA membership voted to formally endorse the Housing for All Platform, created by a coalition that is working to address homelessness in Seattle.

With approximately a third of our students housing insecure (i.e., living in shelters or other temporary housing), this is a hugely important issue to our community. We joined many fellow endorsers, incuding the PTAs of McGilvra and Stevens.

Check out the Housing for All site for more information—especially the Take Action page if you want to know how you can help.


Thanks to everyone who “Dined Out”!

It was a full house at Coastal Kitchen Wednesday night, thank you to everyone who came out and helped contribute to a fun event! (And special thanks to Toi Sennhauser, who volunteered her time to make many kids happy with face-painted guineau pigs, carrots, Magic: The Gathering creatures, etc.)

We’re hoping to have more “Dine Out” events this year—so if you couldn’t make it this time, you’ll have more chances. And if you have a favorite restaurant who you think might be interested, feel free to ask them or let us know!