San Gabriel Mission Elementary School

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News and Announcements

HUMANS OF SGMES...Meet Mrs. Olvera!

Ms. Mc Coy was the strictest teacher in my whole elementary school and in 4th grade, she was my teacher. I was so nervous about having her because of the horror stories I had heard. Turned out that those stories were a bit exaggerated. Little did I know she would impact my life and pave a new road for me forever. Ms. Mc Coy had high expectations but she was also kind and so patient. 4th grade was the year that I had difficulties with reading. Ms. Mc Coy challenged me in ways no other teacher had. She kept me after school and worked with me. She taught me songs to help me retain important information and she made me feel powerful, smart and like I could accomplish anything. By the end of the school year I had not only met grade level expectations, but had exceeded them. I’ll always be so thankful that I had a teacher who cared enough to help me, to push me and to challenge me. More importantly, I will never forget the way she made me feel.

I often think of Ms. Mc Coy and each time I say a prayer of thanksgiving. It is because of her that I too am a teacher today. My goal is to reach each one of my students in the ways they need it. My students may not remember everything I have said to them, but my hope is that they remember how they felt in my classroom.
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HUMANS OF SGMES...Ms. Romanach!

At the end of first grade, I was diagnosed with dyslexia. At the time, I wasn’t really sure what this meant other than the fact that I started getting pulled out of reading class with a small group of students to have a different teacher for reading. Our new reading teacher, Mrs. Z, explained what dyslexia was to us and made sure that we could not use our learning difference as an excuse. She was able to incorporate all of our learning styles into each lesson to make sure we all understood what was being taught. Reading class went from being the class I dreaded the most, to the class I most looked forward to. After three years of working with Mrs. Z, it was time for us to go back to the regular reading class in fifth grade. We were all nervous at first, but ultimately were able to succeed thanks to all the tips and tricks she had taught us over the years. Not only did I survive fifth grade, but thanks to Mrs. Z, I will hopefully be finishing my Master's program in two years!
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HUMANS OF SGMES... Meet Mrs. Garcia!

My mom was my fourth grade teacher. And contrary to what most people might expect, I loved everything about it. My classmates weren’t always nice to me about it; they’d often stop talking if I walked by or complain loudly at recess about assignments they didn’t want to do or tests they didn’t do well on. But I didn’t care. I loved watching her write on the chalkboard in her perfect teacher handwriting. I loved the pronoun cheer she taught us to sing while shaking brightly colored pom-poms, unfazed by the laughs of the class (I, you he, she, it, we, they, me, you, him, her, it, us, them!). I loved watching her face light up when one of her students won the Spelling Bee or performed in the Talent Show or became a big brother or sister. My mom was my fourth grade teacher and that was the year I decided that I wanted to be a teacher too; I thought that one day I would want my daughter to be that proud of me too. Today, I am Facebook friends with dozens of my old classmates and their siblings and now and again, someone shares a fond memory of our glorious school years. All the good ones start with “Remember in the fourth grade…?” and I love to reply, “That was the year my mom was my teacher.”
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HUMANS OF SGMES... Meet Mrs. Lopez!

As a teacher, I find my greatest inspiration in the mundane interactions with my students. One of my favorite stories to tell is of a student I taught a few years ago. This student was unmotivated and angry: ignored my greetings, did not interact with his peers, and did not complete assignments. After a few months of greeting him regularly, one day he turned and smiled. That smile soon turned into a “Hello,” then after that to “Good morning. How’s your day, Miss?” He became motivated and was a joy to interact with daily. This student went on to graduate and traveled to Alaska, Peru, and Chile while working with a team on trail restoration and as a translator. He is now on his way to becoming a firefighter and every time I hear from him I feel pride because I had a tiny part in that journey. In my classroom, the insignificant is the magnificent that makes all the difference.
I'm grateful to be able to witness my students’ daily growth. It is what keeps me motivated year after year!
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HUMANS OF SGMES... Meet Ms. Nunez!

For as long as I can remember I always wanted to be a teacher. I would play school with my Barbies and my stuffed animals, and I knew it is what I would be when I grew up. After graduating college and completing my credential program, my mind changed, and I no longer dreamt of being a teacher. Really, I just wanted to have a high paying job, as any young twenty-something would, and that’s exactly what I did. I was able to work my way up to management position at a large retail company, and decided that the business route was the way to go. I stuck with it for many years, but I eventually realized that there is no difference being made in the lives of young people while working retail, in fact, retail is the exact opposite. I also learned that that happiness has no monetary value and I made the decision to quit my job in hopes of finding something else.
Luckily my stars aligned and fate brought me back home, to my old elementary school. In 2014 I was lucky enough to have been offered a position in CASA as well as substitute teaching. I quickly remembered why I wanted to be a teacher and loved every moment I spent in the classroom. The following school year I was offered my dream job in middle school as the 8th grade homeroom teacher. Mission not only brought me back to life, but also fills me with so much joy and happiness each and every day.
I love being surrounded by such an amazing community of families that work together to help and support each other, which was the same type community that I was brought up in. I love seeing my old childhood friends, who have also returned with their own children, for that special Mission education and upbringing. I love being able to relate to my students as they are on their journey of figuring out who they are, in the same classrooms that I learned in. My journey has brought me full circle, and I hope to be a positive and influential person in the lives of our students and families here at San Gabriel Mission Elementary School. Once a Spartan, ALWAYS a Spartan!!!
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HUMANS OF SGMES... Meet Mrs. Breitschwerdt!

Growing up I didn’t know what job I wanted to do, but I always knew I wanted to be a mom.  Being a mom to my three kids is better than I ever imagined. I was lucky to be a stay at home mom when my kids were small. Reading stories, coloring, watching my kids explore and experience the world around them was the best part. One of my favorite memories of my son is when he was about three years old.  We were coming back from the grocery store and he dropped a carton of eggs on the kitchen floor. The look on his face was that of complete failure and disappointment. I remember thinking “oh no what a mess” but seeing his face made me realize that his feelings were more important than any mess. I got a whisk, sat down on the floor. with him, showed him how to separate the shells from the eggs.  I taught him how to scramble eggs right there on the kitchen floor. The look of failure turned into complete joy as he laughed out loud while we whisked eggs together. He then helped me clean up the eggs and a memory was made. Mistakes are the most teachable moments. As a TK teacher, some of the best lessons come from unintentional mistakes. When my youngest became school aged, I realized how much I missed watching my kids learn. So, I became the Aide to my children’s Kindergarten teacher.  At the end of the first day, after watching the teacher interact with her students I finally knew what I wanted to be when I grew up- a Kindergarten teacher! The following year, God blessed me with the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of the best Kindergarten teacher I’ve ever known. Seven years later, I was blessed again when I was asked to start a TK program at Mission. Every day I go to work looking for the opportunity to make ‘scrambled’ eggs with my students.
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HUMANS OF SGMES... Meet Ms. Capra!

Growing up my Mom had a Home DayCare. I grew up with ten other kids in my house not including my three siblings. Though I was a child myself, I fed the kids, gave them their bottles, took walks with them and played with them until their parents picked them up. When I was eight, I had the best 2nd grade teacher and I remember saying that I wanted to be just like her when I grew up. And that’s where it all started for me. Since second grade I knew I wanted to be a teacher.
Fast forward to now. My first year of teaching complete and getting ready for year 2! I am lucky to have been a part of the Mission family since February 2016. San Gabriel Mission Elementary School isn’t just a school where you obtain an education. It is so much more than that! I am very fortunate to work with such a supportive faculty and staff, a loving community, and a place where I can truly be myself to share my Catholic faith and knowledge with students. 
I am passionate about having a positive classroom environment that not only challenges students academically, but provides a place for students to grow socially. I encourage students to think outside the box and motivate them to ask questions whenever they are curious about homework, a test or the general wonders of life. As an educator, it is my goal to equip my students with skills that will apply beyond the classroom. 
I believe our callings call us and this is one call I’m glad I answered. Go Spartans!
- Ms. Capra, 4th Grade Teacher
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Students Experiment With Science

Mission Elementary students can now expand their love of science and math through the newly formed “Lab Rats” Science Club. Under the supervision of our 1st grade teacher, Mrs. Lopez and our parent volunteer, Mr. Goeppert, students learn to problem solve and explore their creative side in building robots. Once the students put their robots to the “test”, they soon learned that design is a major factor in functionality. Thank you to Mrs. Lopez and Mr. Goeppert for imparting their knowledge, and love, of science with our students!
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