Principal’s Corner: Happy kids learn; and kids are happy at Tahoe Lake |

Principal’s Corner: Happy kids learn; and kids are happy at Tahoe Lake

Stephanie Foucek
Principal’s Corner

Anyone who has ever remodeled knows that there is nothing fun about living through construction.

This is why all of us at Tahoe Lake Elementary are thrilled to have school at the Rideout campus while Tahoe Lake is under construction.

It has been an awesome adventure so far, and we are enjoying our time here. We are a hands-on science school, and our peaceful setting in the woods at Rideout provides opportunities to explore the forest and meadow, complementing our science focus. Our classrooms are cozy and in close proximity to each other which has deepened our collaboration opportunities across all grade levels.

At Tahoe Lake Elementary we are always seeking to improve and to be the best school we can be for all of our students and families. Our teachers strive to provide the most engaging instruction in a nurturing environment, and our support staff is dedicated to supporting our children both inside and outside of the classroom. We support the whole child through engaging, hands-on learning and every student has a champion. Our connections to our kids are powerful and ensure our students are set up for success.

Our science focus is our overarching lens to develop critical thinking, confidence, and academic skills. Every grade level provides dynamic, hands-on science instruction focused on making science concepts relevant, and to lay a solid foundation for our students to become highly skilled problem solvers and critical thinkers as they grow. Being in Tahoe means that outdoor learning opportunities are plentiful, and we take our learning outside to take advantage of our environment. Just stepping out the classroom door our students can use their scientific concepts and observe, measure, and predict, and take in amazing forest views!

Everything we do is through our science focus, and our students have many "in the field" learning opportunities throughout the school year as well. They raise and release Lahontan Cutthroat Trout, plant native plants in our garden, create moon and lightscapes, hatch chickens and engineer coops to house them, and solve 'Mystery Science' inquiries.

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At Tahoe Lake Elementary, and throughout the school district, our students have an array of educational opportunities, such as technology, art, music, P.E., and counseling programs, that have ceased to exist in many public schools.

In P.E., students learn Peaceful Playground, basic athletic skills, and team sports. Our technology classes are integrated with the curriculum and extend student learning with a particular focus on literacy development through technology. In music, our students learn voice, instrument, and cultural awareness, and perform in two school-wide shows per year.

We are extremely grateful for our community's generous support of our local parcel tax that funds these enhancement programs.

Our families are partners in their children's education, and we host many events for the whole family, including Family Reading Night, Family Science Night, and Family Movie Night. Thank you to our dedicated and supportive community of families who volunteer in the classroom, on field trips, in the library, on the playground, and with PTO and Site Council.

While we're at Rideout, significant changes are underway on our home campus. Thanks to the incredible support of our North Lake Tahoe community, our Measure E facility upgrade project is well underway! We are so excited for our improved and new classrooms, a science lab, a greenhouse, and a technology lab. While the upgrades are extensive, we are preserving the charm and history of our Little Auditorium and library.

We are very proud to have been recognized by the State of California for our excellence. Tahoe Lake Elementary has been named both a California Gold Ribbon School and a California Distinguished School. Only 2 percent of all elementary schools in California have been named both a Gold Ribbon School and Distinguished School back to back. Go Tahoe Lake!

Thank you to our entire North Lake Tahoe community for all you do to support our students. You truly make a difference at our school and for our children.

Stephanie Foucek in the principal of Tahoe Lake Elementary.