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In This Issue
Exhibition Night...An Invitation
In the News
Service Learning Fair -- A Huge Success
Da Vinci Students Celebrate Author's Day
Job Shadow Day
Spring Cleaning Day
Project Focus: Olympics
Make a Gift and Make a Difference!


5 - Olympics Opening Ceremony & Academic Decathlon
5 - New Teacher       Information Meeting
6 pm

6 - Coffee with the Principal  8 am

6-7 - Olympics Sporting Events

8 - Exhibition Night  6pm

9 - Olympics Closing Ceremony

10 - Spring Cleaning Day


20 - Cafe con la directora  8 am

27-28 - College Week

30 - Pupil-Free Day

Our Community Partners

Belkin International, Inc.

The Boeing Company
Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

High Tech High

Los Angeles Small School Center
LMU School of Education


Northrop Grumman
Otis College of Art & Design

reDiscover Center

Studio Printing



Vistamar School

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Da Vinci Schools
13500 Aviation Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA  90250

(310) 725-5800

Matthew Wunder, Ed.D. Executive Director

Nicole Tempel


Dear Da Vinci Families and Friends:

Learning Beyond the Classroom

At Da Vinci Schools, what goes on outside the classroom is as important as what happens inside.

As part of our "learn by doing" curriculum, Da Vinci students are required to participate in authentic off-campus learning experiences such as academic internships, job shadowing, and service learning.

Students gain valuable 21st century workplace skills -- critical thinking, reasoning, teamwork, flexibility, and proficiency in new technologies.

Da Vinci students are expected to be active learners who know how to learn independently and are able to take their knowledge from the classroom and apply it somewhere else. 

We are committed to ensuring that all of our students graduate college-ready, career-prepared, and community-minded.

On behalf of all of us at Da Vinci Schools, I want to wish you a very safe and enjoyable Spring Break.

With warm regards,

Matthew Wunder, Ed.D.
Executive Director
Exhibition Night . . . An Invitation

Please join us for our second Exhibition Night of student learning on Thursday, April 8, from 6-8 pm @ Da Vinci Schools.  During Exhibition Night, students will present their major projects from the semester in a dazzling array of creative formats to an audience of students, families, faculty and community members. New families and prospective families are welcome as well! 

During this specific Exhibition, students will mainly be presenting their Olympics project.  See Project Focus below.

Exhibitions are an important component of project-based learning and assessment, and provide a comprehensive view of each student's knowledge and mastery of the state curriculum. Using oral presentations and digital portfolios, students will demonstrate how they were able to tackle real-world complex problems requiring critical thinking, problem solving, teamwork, effective communication, and other important skills that are vital to academic and lifelong success.

Come see our real-world "learn by doing" curriculum for yourself.  We offer an exciting learning environment where education is relevant, challenging, enjoyable and collaboration-driven.
In the News

Want to learn more about project-based learning?  Check out the recent article written about Da Vinci Schools, Where 'Learning by Doing' is the Rule.
Service Learning Fair -- A Huge Success!

More than 35 nonprofits and service organizations and hundreds of students participated in Da Vinci Schools first Service Learning Fair on Feb. 25 in order to promote community service and to learn more about the specific volunteer opportunities available to them.

Da Vinci Schools require students to perform a minimum of 25 hours of service each year. Service Learning Fair 2010

During the fair, students visited booths and met one-on-one with representatives from dozens of organizations.  The fair won high praise from all participants.  Our students were engaged, enthusiastic and respectful. 

Service learning activities develop students' personal and social responsibility, and promote learning through active participation in real-world experiences. Already, many of our students have engaged in meaningful community service projects.

As with any event of this scale, it takes a village to pull it off.  Volunteers Dawn Henderson and Karie McNickles organized and executed the entire event from start to finish.  There were also many students who served as ambassadors throughout the day. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!  It was truly a spectacular event.

We are also grateful to the many organizations that participated:

Animal Care Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, California Science Center, Childrens Hospital Los Angeles, Community's Child, Dream Center, Friendship Circle, Friends of Ballona Wetlands, Friends of Madrona Marsh, Gardena Willows Wetlands Preserve, Habitat for Humanity, Harbor Interfaith Services, Harvest Home, Heal the Bay, Home Boy Industries, L.A. Animal Services, Malibu Foundation, Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy, Palos Verdes/South Bay Audubon Society, Project Angel Food, Reading Partners, Richstone Family Center, Ride to Fly, Roundhouse Aquarium, SEA Lab, Shane's Inspiration, Silverlake Conservatory of Music, Stray Cat Alliance, Teen Line, Toberman Neighborhood Center, Tree Musketeers, Tree People, Volunteer Center of South Bay, West L.A. Animal Care Center, Wiseburn School District, Wiseburn Library, and Women of Color.
Da Vinci Students Celebrate Author's Day at Juan Cabrillo Elementary

Juan Cabrillo Elementary School held its annual Author's Day on March 22 with 9th grade humanities students from Da Vinci Design and Da Vinci Science reading children's books that they wrote, illustrated, printed and bound for a recent project called Reading Fun Zone.  Several students from Ms. Matthews' class also read their books to students at Peter Burnett Elementary School.

Author's Day is a fun-filled literacy event to show children that books are written by real people and to get them excited about reading, creative writing, and discovering new things about themselves. This is the first time Cabrillo invited student authors to share their work. It was a very rewarding experience for all students.

Thank you, Cabrillo and Peter Burnett Elementary Schools, for welcoming our students onto your campus and into your classrooms.  A very special thanks also to Michelle Rainey (Da Vinci) and Bonnie Olguin (Cabrillo) for coordinating this wonderful event.  

Authors Day 2010
Leah M. reads her story
A Part of the Team
to Ms. Johnson's first grade students at
Cabrillo Elementary
as part of Author's Day festivities.

Job Shadow Day

One of our signature programs at Da Vinci Schools is our Job Shadow program, where students get hands-on experience in the workplace making a critical link between education and success on the job.

All of our 10th grade students are required to participate in a job shadow experience and did so as part of National Job Shadow Campaign on March 3.  Below, a group of students visit our friends at Northrop Grumman. Thank you, Northrop, for opening your doors and your hearts to our students!

Northrop Shadow Day 2010
  Da Vinci Spring Cleaning Day - Apr. 10

Spring Cleaning

Spring Cleaning Day
N:    Sat., April 10, 9 am to Noon
Da Vinci Schools

The success of our Cleanup depends on you! 

Please join us to cleanup and beautify our campus.  We'll be cleaning classrooms, picking up trash, painting, and working in the garden. 
Ages 8 and up only, please!

Cleanup Supplies Needed

trash bags
paint brushes
paint trays
sand paper

We could also use water donations for our Very Important Volunteers! 

Hope to see you there!
  Da Vinci Olympics 2010

PROJECT FOCUS:  The Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics have come and gone, but the Olympics are still going strong at Da Vinci Schools. One of the highlights of this semester has been our Olympics project developed by Da Vinci Science teachers Colleen O'Boyle and Kate Garrido and run by our 10th gradeZimbabwe students. The project began in February with students from both schools forming groups and selecting a specific country and sport to study.  As part of the project, students are studying the history and culture of their country, including sports history, their country's current economic condition, tourism, transportation, government, and more. The competition began on Monday, March 15th with a Host Proposal in which all countries created  a presentation to convince the Olympic Committee (the 10th graders) that their country should be chosen to host the games. The countries represented are:  China, Chile, Haiti, Japan, Kenya, Macedonia and Zimbabwe, the winner of the host country competition.  Opening Ceremonies take place on April 5th, the same day of the Academic Decathlon, where students will answer questions that relate to the history of the Olympics, the physics of Olympic sports, and the cultures of the competing countries. Sporting Events will take place on April 6th and 7th. The Closing Ceremony and Medal Ceremony will take on April 9th.
Make a Gift and Make a Difference!

Investing In Excellence

Our inaugural Annual Giving Campaign ends on May 31, 2010.  Please consider making a gift to Da Vinci Schools today.  We need your support!

The reality is state budget cuts have resulted in an approximate funding loss of $370,000 for the 2009-2011 school years.  We must join together to help bridge the gap between what the state provides and what it really costs to deliver an outstanding eduction.

Gifts to the ANNUAL GIVING CAMPAIGN are being used to fund internships and mentoring programs; laptops and enhanced technology; field trips to public and private colleges; project-based learning materials; and after-school sports, clubs and tutoring.


The suggested donation amount is $365 per family (only $1 a day).  All donations are 100% tax-deductible.

Please give what you can.  Every gift, no matter how large or small, has an impact.  Make yours today!

Drop off a check made payable to Da Vinci Schools or mail it to:
Da Vinci Schools, 13500 Aviation Blvd., Hawthorne, CA  90250. 

Or call us at (310) 725-5800 to pay by credit card. 

Or click here to make a secure online PayPal donation or download a donation form/pledge card if you wish to pay in installments.

Many local companies have MATCHING GIFT PROGRAMS that can double or even triple your gift. Contact your company's H.R. office today and find out if it has a matching gift program.  If it does, provide us with the paperwork and we'll do the rest.

For more information about our Annual Giving Campaign, please visit our FAQ page or contact Sara Deulofeu at (310) 725-5800 or giving@davincischools.org.

Thank you for your generous support!