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The PTO Update

November 7, 2021


Halloween at ASH was such a success, and such a great way for our community to reconnect with each other in person. We are so thankful to everyone who participated in Trunk or Treat, whether by volunteering, decorating a car, or just showing up in fun costumes to gather candy. We at the PTO will definitely remember it for years to come. Now it's almost a shame to get back to regular life, so take a last look at the winning pumpkins from our carving contest!

With October behind us, the holiday season is suddenly upon us. While many of you are already thinking about your December travel plans and the existential crisis of time passing (oops, just me!), please squeeze in a few moments to consider helping with the PTO's next major event:

ASH's beloved International Fair is coming to you this year in person (fingers crossed) and we are so excited! The theme of the Fair this year is "Stronger Together" as we recognize that the true value of our school community lies in our diversity and our wide spectrum of international perspectives. The community experience and the ties it creates are the backbone of life in the Netherlands for so many of our families, and what has gotten us through the very trying last 20 months of the pandemic--and which still doesn't seem to be leaving us alone!

We are warmly inviting ASH families, either as individuals or groups, to represent your countries, whether your home or just listed on your passport, at our International Fair. This involves setting up a table and filling it with information, heritage items, games, art, and all sorts of cultural artifacts to share your country's uniqueness with the rest of ASH. You will also be able to make a gift basket to be raffled off to visitors. Please sign up today to host a table by clicking HERE. There will also be planning meeting on Dec. 2 for all participants--details to be announced.

Two important VOLUNTEER POSITIONS are needed for the International Fair:

Country Coordinator: If you are good at organizing and communicating, consider becoming the IF Country Coordinator. This role includes communicating with all signed-up country representatives, making sure they have the information they need, maintaining up-to-date information about each group, and helping to set up the event space. If interested, please email

Treasurer: If money is more your pleasure, you could be the event Treasurer. This uncomplicated role simply requires keeping track of spending in terms of the event budget and filing for reimbursements when necessary. If interested, please email


Upcoming PTO Events

Mon., Nov. 8, 9:00: Monday Morning Networking, Holidays in the Netherlands

You may have noticed festive treats and decorations appearing in shop windows and shelves all around town. Is it Christmas come early? No! These are the signs of that special Dutch holiday, Sinterklaas! Find out all about the history, practices, and modern evolution of this weeks-long celebration for which every child in the country--small and big--goes completely wild. Plus learn about a variety of other holidays celebrated in this season--some of which are probably more familiar.

MMN meetings are now in person, so we will see you at the ABF tomorrow! Please have a mask and Covid QR code.

Mon., Nov. 15, 9:00: MMN Sligro Field Trip

Sligro is the Netherlands' answer to Costco or Sam's Club, a large wholesale-style store with a wide variety of food and non-food items. The selections are some of the best you will be able to find in NL and shopping is open to ASH-badge holders. Spend a morning shopping with us at their Leiden location! Space is limited, so register for free HERE.

Sat., Nov. 20, 9am - 2 pm: PTO Holiday Bazaar

Why worry about shortages in the global supply chain when you can do all your holiday shopping with small, local businesses--many of which are owned by ASH parents? This fun weekend event will feature over 20 community vendors with a wide variety of products for everyone on your gift list. Or, reward yourself for getting through the semester! Non-ASH shoppers are welcome as well, so bring all your friends and neighbors. The Bazaar will be held in the Main Campus Sports Hall. Masks and Covid QR codes are required.


Upcoming Community Events

Babylab Research Project:

A former ASH Parent and Substitute Teacher is conducting research at the Leiden University Babylab with two government-funded projects: "Building Block of Cognition" and the international "Many Babies Project." This research focuses on language acquisition and early child development. If you have a baby or toddler aged 0-36 months whom you are willing to have participate in this valuable research, please email

for more information. You may also follow the QR code below.


What to do on the Weekend?

Legoland Discovery Centre Scheveningen

The beach is looking dreary these days, but the boulevard is still buzzing. Schedule an afternoon at Legoland Discovery Centre and let your little ones build to their heart's content. Besides a plethora of building stations, there is a laser maze, a train ride, a 4D movie, and many other activities to keep those kids busy. You'll have so much fun, you won't mind browsing a few minutes in the on-site Lego store. Visiting info is at

Space Expo

Take a journey through the galaxy at the museum of the European Space Agency, conveniently located in Noordwijk. It is packed with interactive exhibits, such as a walk-through model of the International Space Station and a space "mission" guided by famous European astronauts. You can also see a real Soyuz capsule and many other ESA artifacts. There is plenty to see for children and space enthusiasts of all ages, so book a ticket today!

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