Monday, May 13, 2019

May Memoirs

Monthly GIA Elementary Newsletter

Student Features: 

Did you guys tune into the story time where Mrs. Cancel made some slime?! These students did and loved it! If you have any projects or crafts you want to share we want to see them! Share your photos with us at to see them featured on next month's issue!

May Birthdays:
  • Amelia L.
  • Uchechukwu E.
  • Ryan G.
  • Amelia M.
  • Hadassah A.
  • Julia C.
  • Jason C.
  • Ammy A.
  • Christopher M.
  • Jesse Tm
  • Iythiy C.
  • Jordan S.
  • Emily D.
  • Bryan R.
  • Jaida M.
  • Gianna T.
  • Huldah E.
  • Jla S.
  • Tinomudaishe M.

 Storytime Announcements

starting for the new year on January 10th!

Chef's Corner!

Strawberry Lemonade Recipe | Homemade Lemonade | Strawberry Drink Recipe #lemonade #strawberries #drink #dinneratthezoo

Take advantage of the fruit this season and try out this awesome fruit drink recipe!

  1. 2 cups of fresh strawberries
  2. 7 cups of water divided use
  3. 1 cup of sugar (or more to taste)
  4. 2 cups of fresh squeezed lemon juice
  5. Sliced strawberries, lemons and mint sprigs for garnish (optional)
  1. Combine the sugar with 2 cups of water. Microwave for 2 minutes or heat on the stove until very hot. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
  2. Place the strawberries in a blender with 1 cup of the water. Blend until smooth. 
  3. Combine the strawberry puree, sugar water mixture, lemon juice and remaining 4 cups of water in a pitcher.
  4. Stir thoroughly then chill until ready to serve. Just before serving, stir in sliced strawberries, lemon, and mint sprigs if desired.
For more information visit:

 Creating in the kitchen is so much fun! You can share your pictures of your oreo brownies on Griggs facebook page, or email them to me so that I can see your creation.


A Little Pick-Me-Up: Chirps of reminder.

 "Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows."

Now that the birds are singing again, I am constantly reminded of God's love for me. Did you know that birds during the winter have to search for enough food during the day to keep them warm at night? Where GRIGGS is located in Berrien Springs, MI the winter had a few days were it was below 0 degrees. One day even got down to -35 degrees! We were warm in our houses, but what about the birds outside? Not even the coldest winter could keep us from hearing them in the spring. God provided for their needs, and they are just birds! How much more does God care about us? He reminds us that even every hair on our head is counted. That is a lot of hair (although there may be a little less on your dad)! Never forget, no matter how bad it gets, or how alone you feel, that Jesus sees you, your needs, and will provide for your every need. You are worth more than the birds. 

Munching Caterpillars
With the warmer weather comes new life of not only plants but bugs and other things! Check out this classic story of the "Hungry, Hungry Caterpillar."

Craft/Science Project:

Cherry Blossom Paintings

Cherry blossom painting with cotton balls is the perfect spring art project for kids.

Bring in the spring season with these beautiful paintings you can display anywhere!

  1. Canvas paper
  2. Acrylic paint (regular paint can work also)
  3. Paintbrushes
  4. Paint palette (something to put your paint on)
  5. Water container
  6. Cotton balls
  7. Clothespins
  1. If you want to make the canvas bigger, you can tear and tape several pieces of paper together to make a larger surface area!
  2. Paint the entire canvas with blue for the sky. Our paint was mixed with white so you can see some white streaks here and there in the sky which I think looks nice. Using a larger flat brush for the sky works well.
  3. Let the sky dry completely, or if you are wanting to move on quickly, you can use a hair dryer to help speed things up.
  4. Draw in a branch with a pencil. Depending on the age of the child, they may need some help to do this. My daughter wanted me to draw her the branch and then she painted it in. Paint the branch with black paint and let it dry.
  5. Now the fun part! Using two shades of pink, one light and one dark, have the kids paint in the cherry blossom flowers with their cotton ball paintbrushes. Start with the darker shade first, then add the lighter pink. There is no need to let each color dry in between, kids can paint with both colors at the same time.
Visit this site to see all the instructions and more pictures:

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

The Best April Fools Joke

Monthly GIA Elementary Newsletter

Student Features: 

Some of our international students are fueling their body with Vitamin D and their head with knowledge! Spring is officially here, is it warm where you are? What did you do for your spring break? Share your photos with us at to see them featured on next month's issue!

April Birthdays:
  • Xavier P.
  • Robert C.
  • Sienna M.
  • Alejandra B.
  • Briana F.
  • Matthew B.
  • Maygin V.
  • Calan W.
  • Angelina U.
  • Hayden C.
  • Niki P.
  • Janelle S.
  • Bryce A.
  • Anke M.
  • Giuliano L.
  • Caden G.
  • Seojin H.

 Storytime Announcements

starting for the new year on January 10th!

Chef's Corner!

Bunny Nests
You can do this recipe with the coconut nests, or with Rice Krispies treats (these are easily made vegan)!
Coconut Macaroon Nests a classic dessert recipe for celebrating spring and Easter | Inspired by Charm


  1. 4 egg whites
  2. 1 tablespoon sugar
  3. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  4. 1 package (14 ounces) sweetened flaked coconut
  5. 1/2 cup white chocolate chips (semi-sweet chocolate) melted
  6. 70-90 mini candy eggs
  1. Preheat oven to 300F. Coat the cups in a mini muffin pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, lightly whisk together the egg whites, salt, and sugar to combine. Then, with a fork, mix in the coconut.
  3. Drop two tablespoons of the coconut mixture into each prepared mini muffin cup.
  4. Lightly press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of each cup (use your thumb). Bake for 28-30 min, until lightly golden on top. (Loosely place a piece of aluminum foil over the top of the pan if the coconut starts to brown too quickly.)
  5. Let the nests cool in the tins on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Then run a spatula around the edges of the muffin cups to loosen the nests. Carefully life out the nests and allow them to cool completely.
  6. With the melted chocolate in a piping bag (or a plastic baggie with the corner cut off), pipe a smalla mount of chocolate into each nest. Add 2 or 3 candy eggs and press them gently to secure.
  7. Enjoy now or save and pack for later!
 Creating in the kitchen is so much fun! You can share your pictures of your oreo brownies on griggs facebook page, or email them to me so that I can see your creation.


A Little Pick-Me-Up: Hope in Darkness

 It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, the centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.”

For the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two.
Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last. 

The day Jesus died was a dark day. The Savior of the Jews, the world, was beaten, whipped and left to die, bleeding out on a cross. Every breath was an agonizing one as his disciples and those who followed him watched in horror as he slowly began to wither away. He took his last breath and they pierced his side to ensure he was dead. Then they took his body, prepared it and set it in a tomb. Can you imagine the sadness of those that day? A man who they had come to love was put to death for something he didn't do. He was innocent. It seemed like the darkness of that day would swallow them whole. But we know the story. Jesus would rise on the third day! Imagine you were him, and you woke up in complete darkness. The last thing you remember was your arms pierced through, struggling to breathe. You look at your wounds, and the scars alone remain. You appreciate the love and care your disciples took when they wrapped you, and so you say thank you to God for them. The next thing you do is get out of that darkness, it no longer has a hold on you. This is what Jesus offers. Freedom from our darkness, our sins, our past, the weight of death. Jesus pulled off the greatest April Fool's Joke of all-time! This Easter, contemplate on this and let's praise Jesus for all he has done. 

Abnormally Hilarious April Fools Jokes

  • Bring a box full of "Krispy Kreme" Veggies to work
  • Bubble Wrap under a rug and you'll for sure frighten your pet!
  • Frozen breakfast: parents, fill your children's bowl with their favorite cereal, milk and a spoon. Put it into the freezer overnight and see their reaction!
  • Add a "please honk" to your friend/spouse's car which will make for an interesting day at work
  • Make some "brownies" for dessert and cut out a brown E on construction paper and serve it after dinner! (Maybe you could follow up with some actual brownies later)

Craft/Science Project:

Easter STEM Project

How to make a catapult for Easter! Try our simple to make Easter catapult STEM activity and launch plastic eggs. Explore simple machines and physics with rubber bands and popsicle sticks.

Study the laws of motion with this fun Easter activity!

  1. 10 Jumbo Popsicle Sticks
  2. Rubber Bands
  3. Spoon
  4. Plastic eggs (various sizes)
  1. Stack 8 jumbo popsicle sticks.
  2. Insert one jumbo popsicle stick into the stack resting on the top of the bottom last stick. Just a small portion of the stick should be through. This step can be done after the next if you wish.
  3. Tightly wind rubber bands around either end of your stack.
  4. Place the last jumbo stick on top of the stack in the same position as the stick that you have already inserted. 
  5. Very quick and simple. You can add a spoon in a couple different ways or none at all as seen below.
  6. This is a great way to experiment with design and how it affects the motion of the catapult. 
Visit this site to download the STEM printable and see more pictures:

    Friday, March 1, 2019

    Messes, Munches and March.

    Monthly GIA Elementary Newsletter

    Student Features: 

    Domenic tuned into story time and tried his hand at Mrs. Cancel's "Snow Project" From what we can tell, the project turned out spectacular! Did you do this project too? Send us some pictures and you may be featured in the next blog post!

    March Birthdays:
    • Henry F.
    • Thomas P.
    • Mychael P.
    • Sarai E.
    • Angelina M.
    • Emmanuel N.
    • Michael M
    • King C.
    • Dylan S.
    • Mary M.
    • Adelaide E.
    • Darla N.
    • Amira C.
    • Om D.
    • Lintlenthati T.
    • Phillip G.
    • Haylie B.
    • Joshua S
    • Juan C.
    • Ashely P.
    • Tandy A.

     Storytime Announcements

    starting for the new year on January 10th!

    Chef's Corner!

    Oreo Brownies (March 6)

    Fudgy Oreo Brownies

    1. 12 Tablespoons unsalted butter cut into Tbsp-sized pieces
    2. 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
    3. 1/2 cup natural cocoa powder
    4. 3/4 cup sugar
    5. 3/4 cup brown sugar packed
    6. 2 large eggs + 1 egg yolk
    7. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    8. 1/2 teaspoon salt
    9. 1 cup all-purpose flour
    10. 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
    11. 20 oreo cookies
    1. Preheat oven to 350F and line a 9x9 baking pan with parchment paper
    2. Combine butter and 1/2 cup (100g) semisweet chocolate chips in a large, microwave-safe bowl.
    3. Microwave for 30 seconds. Stir well, microwave for another 15 seconds and then stir well again. Repeat for 15 seconds until chocolate and butter are completely melted and well-combined.
    4. Add cocoa powder and instant coffee (if using), stir well.
    5. Add sugars, stir until completely combined.
    6. Add eggs, one at a time. After each addition, stir well, and then stir another 30 seconds (the better you stir your batter, the cracklier your brownie tops will be).
    7. Stir in vanilla extract.
    8. Sprinkle salt over batter and add flour, stir very well, until completely combined.
    9. Place 15 of your Oreos in a large Ziploc bag and use a rolling pin or mallet to smack until broken into pieces (don't crush into fine crumbs, you want decent sized pieces to bite into!).
    10. Add broken cookie pieces and mini chocolate chips and stir into batter.
    11. Spread batter into a prepared 9x9 pan.
    12. Break remaining 5 Oreo cookies into pieces and press gently into the surface of the brownie batter.
    13. Bake on 350F (175C) for 30-35 minutes if using 9x9 pan (toothpick inserted in center should be just slightly fudgy, but not wet with batter).
    14. Allow cooling before cutting and serving.
    For more information visit:

     Creating in the kitchen is so much fun! You can share your pictures of your oreo brownies on griggs facebook page, or email them to me so that I can see your creation.


    A Little Pick-Me-Up: Little Tests

    Luke 16:10-"Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much."

    You ever feel like God isn't answering your big prayers? Like that big job you want, or that big toy you prayed for? It can feel like God is holding something back from us. But before we get as bitter as a sour apple, we should take a look at our hearts. Are we being faithful with what God has already given us? Are you treating those around you, the gifts of family and friends, with love and care? Before you get the big things, God wants us to be faithful with the "little" things. 

    March Munchies: Check out these National Food days in the month of March
    March 1: National Peanut Butter Lovers Day 
    March 1: National Fruit Compote Day 
    March 2: National Banana Creme Pie Day (also spelled Cream Pie) 
    March 3: National Cold Cuts Day 
    March 4: National Pound Cake Day 
    March 4: National Snack Day 
    March 5: National Cheese Doodle Day 
    March 5: National Absinthe Day 
    March 6: National Frozen Food Day 
    March 6: National Oreo Day 
    March 6: National White Chocolate Cheesecake Day  
    March 7: National Cereal Day

    Read more at:

    Craft/Science Project:

    Blubber Experiment: Want to know how a whale stays warm in the frigid waters of winter? Check out this experiment! 

    1. 1 Big bowl
    2. Ice
    3. Water
    4. 2 Quart Ziploc bags
    5. 1 Gallon Ziploc bag
    6. Oil (vegetable or canola)
    1. Fill the big bowl with ice water and some vegetable oil.
    2. Fill the two smaller Ziploc bags about halfway with oil and seal them.
    3. Put those two bags inside the big bag. The kids will be able to put their hands inside the big bag in between the two bags of oil, almost like a glove.
    4. Then put both hands, one in the bag with oil and the other by itself into the bowl.
    5. Which one is warmer?
    Visit this site to see more pictures of the experiment:

    Check out this youtube video about how blubber keeps whales warm!

      Wednesday, February 6, 2019

      Puppy chow, Snowmen and Fun Facts!

      Monthly GIA Elementary Newsletter

      Student Features: 

      Here we have Jomar and Brianna making a "Fake Snowman" in sunny Florida! Did you do this storytime activity? Keep sending us pictures and you may be featured on the next blog post! 

      February Birthdays:
      • Elora H.
      • Madison K.
      • Mara R.
      • Daveline N.
      • Reagan N.
      • Talise M.
      • Shania C.
      • Joshua S.
      • Yendrys P.
      • Emily L.
      • Ryan L.
      • Justin S.
      • Mallory D.
      • Princess R.D.
      • Michaela R-C.
      • Reo I.
      • Vance A.D.
      • Korbin C.
      • Junelly R.
      • Charity C-K.
      • Melissa M-N.
      • Sara G.
      • Jeremy B.

       Storytime Announcements

      starting for the new year on January 10th!

      Chef's Corner!

      Puppy Chow
      How to make classic puppy chow (muddy buddies).


      1. 9 cups of Chex Cereal (12oz box)
      2. 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips
      3. 1/2 cup of creamy peanut butter 
      4. 1/2 cup of butter (1 stick)
      5. 1 tsp of vanilla extract
      6. 1 1/2 cup of powdered sugar
      7. Parchment paper
      8. Gall sized ziploc bag


      1. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add in the chocolate chips and peanut butter, stirring frequently until chips are melted and smooth.
      2. Remove saucepan from heat and stir in vanilla
      3. Add Chex cereal to a 13-quart mixing bowl. Pour chocolate-peanut butter mixture on top and gently stir with a spatula until all Chex cereal is coated. Set bowl aside.
      4. Set a baking sheet nearby and cover with parchment paper.
      5. Add powdered sugar to the gallon sized Ziploc bag. Working in batches (about 1-2 cups at a time), add coated Chex cereal to bag with powdered sugar, seal or twist the top of the bag closed and then shake the bag until the Chex cereal is coated with sugar. Remove finished puppy chow and spread out on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat until all the puppy chow is made. When finished, discard the plastic bag and any dry powdered sugar that remains inside.
      6. Let puppy chow cool completely before eating. Once cooled, transfer to a sealed container and store for up to 5 days. 
      *You can add cool additions to this puppy chow to make it more like trail mix! Add candy, nuts or fruits to mix it up.
      See full recipe here:

       Creating in the kitchen is so much fun! You can share your pictures of your apple crisp on griggs facebook page, or email them to me so that I can see your creation.


      A Little Pick-Me-Up: Bouncy Prayers

      Psalm 28:6-7- "Blessed be the Lord because he has heard the voice of my supplications! The Lord is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart greatly rejoices and with my song, I will praise Him." 

      Praying to God can sometimes feel a little weird. I mean, technically we are talking out loud to some person we can't see, right? Sometimes it may feel like our prayers are hitting the ceiling. Some people may say that God is an imaginary friend, but David, and hopefully you too, knew better! This psalm is describing David's reaction to God's answered prayer in his life. We don't know exactly what prayer it was. Maybe he had finally been crowned king, or the herd of sheep he prayed for arrived on his front door. Whatever the case, he realized that we can put our trust in God because He never lets us down. Our prayers will always be answered, whether that is a yes, no or not yet. We challenge you to pray for three things this month, make them specific, and see how God answers your prayers!  

      Fun Fact February: 
      1. Every four years there is a leap year in the month of February. 
      2. Superbowl, the largest sporting event of the year, is held in February. 
      3. In Old English, February was called Solmonath (mud month) or Kale-monath (kale month).
      4. February is amongst the most misspelled words. 
      5. February is "Black History Month."

      Craft/Science Project:

      The Unpoppable Bubble

      Blow a bubble that is much harder to POP!

      1. 3 cups of water
      2. 1 cup dish soap
      3. 1/2 cup corn syrup
      4. Scissors
      5. Plastic Pipette
      6. Microfiber gloves
      1. Pour water into a bowl.
      2. Add dish soap into a bowl
      3. Add corn syrup
      4. Mix well.
      5. Cut off the end of the pipette.
      6. Dip cut end of the pipette into bubble solution and blow from the other end to make unpoppable bubbles! 
      Visit this site to watch a video and learn more about bubbles:

        Friday, January 4, 2019

        New Year Chronicles

        Monthly GIA Elementary Newsletter

        Teacher Feature: Winter Break Wipe-Outs

        This winter break, one of our teachers trekked with her Oregonian family up to Mt. Hood. On the mountain, they went snow tubing down a fairly steep hill. This video is the first wipe out they experienced, however, it, unfortunately, wasn't them who wiped out. This video captured their experience. We hope your Christmas break was as fun, but safer than hers!

        January Birthdays:
        • Becky A.
        • Lelentle K.
        • Tiffany V.
        • Catherine C.
        • Micah C.
        • Jessica A.
        • Tsedintle
        • Jonathan S.
        • Evans Junior M.
        • Brock H.
        • Rita B.
        • Yuliya H.
        • John-Nathan S.
        • Hananiah A.
        • Charles D.
        • Kyle R.
        • Rebekah S.
        • Devan S.
        • Abrielle W.
        • Aivah G.
        • Xan E.

         Storytime Announcements

        starting for the new year on January 10th!

        Chef's Corner!

        Nothing is better on a cold than a nice big bowl of flavorful chili. Substitute the chicken for veggie meat and enjoy! 

        •1 onion, chopped
        •3 cloves garlic, minced
        •1 Tb oil
        •2 – 15 ounce cans vegetable broth
        •15 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
        •7 ounce can diced green chilis
        •2 rounded tsp chili powder
        •1 rounded tsp oregano
        •2 can black beans, drained and rinsed
        •1 can corn, drained
        •1  bag of Gardein Chicken Strips
        •Optional toppings: cheese, cilantro, avocado, sour cream and tortilla chips

        1. In a large pot heated over high heat, add the oil, onion and garlic. Sauté until the onions soften. 
        2. Add the broth, tomatoes, chilis and seasonings. Bring to a boil and allow to simmer for 5 minutes. 
        3. Add the beans, corn and chicken then simmer for 5 minutes before serving with cheese, cilantro, avocado, sour cream and tortilla chips.

         Creating in the kitchen is so much fun! You can share your pictures of your apple crisp on griggs facebook page, or email them to me so that I can see your creation.


        A Little Pick-Me-Up

        Isaiah 43:19- "I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland."

        The new year can be full of exciting events and a time to refresh ourselves. New commitments are made and we try to better ourselves through spiritual growth and healthy choices. However, by the middle of February, we seem to find ourselves in the same cycle! This verse is a reminder that Jesus is the only one who can create real, lasting change in our hearts and lives. As we move forward into 2019, let's focus not on ourselves and our efforts, but on the One who makes all things new. 

        Happy New Year: 
        Parents, try this cool new years resolution with your kids! Here is the link if you want the printable:
        Updated Year in Review - 2018 - have your kids fill this sheet out every year! from
        Image result for happy new year gif cartoon

        Craft/Science Project:

        Let's start school this year with a BANG!

        erupting snowballs winter science


        • 1 cup baking soda
        • 1 tsp. dish soap (+ extra for experimenting)
        • glitter
        • water
        • Vinegar
        • Spray bottle
        • Glass Jar
        • Pie Tin
        To Make the Snowballs:
        1. Stir together baking soda and glitter in a bowl. Combine your baking soda mixture with dish soap and mix well.  Add water to your spray bottle and mist your baking soda mixture.  Mix it with your hands and continue misting until a dough forms.  Once a dough forms you can place it in a mold.  I used a large round Tbsp. measuring spoon to make mine but a small muffin tin or other forms would work just as well.  Let dry at least 12 hrs until completely dry.
        The Experiment
        1. Place your glass jar inside your pie tin.  The pie tin will catch the overflow.
        2. We experimented with six different volumes and solutions to see the reactions of our erupting snowballs.
          3 oz vinegar
          2 oz vinegar, 2 oz warm water
          6 oz vinegar
          3 oz vinegar, 3 oz warm water
          6 oz vinegar, 1/2 tsp dish soap
          3 oz vinegar, 3 oz warm water, 1/2 tsp dish soap
        3. Take notes and see which one gives you the biggest reaction!