Autumn Events Keep Barnard Students Busy

It’s always busy at Barnard Mandarin Magnet Elementary School.

Kindergarten through fifth grade students and their teachers said a collective “No” to drugs in their annual Red Ribbon Week door decoration event. The creativity flowed from Halloween themes to musical doors, such as this one from a first grade classroom. The common thread that tied all 15 classrooms together? A pledge to remain drug-free.

The autumn rain couldn’t put a damper on the fun at Barnard’s annual Storybook Parade, held during the morning storms of October 31. Students, teachers, and parents were encouraged to dress up as characters from their favorite books. One creative student decided her favorite book was a vending machine manual!

Barnard students learn Mandarin and experience Chinese culture in their classrooms every day, but the school also acknowledged the diversity of its students’ backgrounds by celebrating Día de Los Muertos this past week. A cultural display of mementos honoring deceased loved ones greeted families in the school’s courtyard. This altar featured traditional elements of the day’s celebration, such as photographs of loved ones, dishes of their favorite foods, candles, sugar skulls, and the “cempasúchil” flower.

“We love Barnard because it brings families together from every corner of the Earth,” explained parent and Día de Los Muertos collaborator Nora Aquino. “It is a school that unites us through a common language, but also encourages and supports students to express themselves and cherish their native cultures.”

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