Family Camp Fall and Spring
The Parent Association organizes and hosts Family Camp during the fall and spring for any CAIS families interested in a quick weekend getaway one or two hours from San Francisco. Camping spots have included Olema RV Resort and Campground in Marin County as well as Big Basin State Park. Games, group dinners and activities create a fun-filled atmosphere for families to get acquainted outside the halls of CAIS.
Coffee and Questions
This informal event is held regularly after drop-off in the morning. The topics range from current events happening in the school to strategic initiatives to ask questions surrounding a particular topic. The school-led event is hosted by the Head of School and provides a way for parents to ask questions in an intimate setting.
Holidays and food are both important elements of the CAIS community and Thanksgiving is no exception. The day before the Thanksgiving break, the halls of CAIS are full of food, sharing and laughter.
Each classroom organizes its own Thanksgiving feast of traditional and Asian-inspired dishes. Families serve the meals buffet style in each classroom. Teachers, administrators and staff fine-tune the sport of "grazing" from classroom to classroom on the delectable food the families provide for the community.
Held on a Saturday in early December, the Parent Association-sponsored Holiday Faire has grown over the years to become a way for the community to kick off the holiday season together.
The team of dedicated PA committee members, middle school volunteers, parent helpers, staff and enthusiastic families come together to create a memorable event. The Holiday Faire is an action-packed day of gingerbread houses, face painting, tasty treats, creative games and clothing and toy drives for local charities.
The Winter Program is a showcase of the talented students at CAIS. Parents and teachers help with costume design while the students practice their choreography during the weeks leading up to the program. Held at nearby Herbst Theatre, the Winter Program is something the parents and students look forward to each year.
Mass Greeting / Lion Dancers
Mass Greeting is a community-wide event in which students lead the school community in songs, music and dance to celebrate Chinese New Year. Students are encouraged to wear traditional Chinese outfits or the color red on this day to signify the lucky color for the new year.
The culminating presentation at Mass Greeting is the lion dance, which is performed by the sixth grade class. The dance is symbolic and is performed as a ceremony to exorcise evil spirits and to summon luck and fortune for the new year. The sixth grade class takes its lion dance responsibilities very seriously and with pride. They will continue to perform during the weeks following Mass Greeting, including the halls and classrooms of CAIS and at community events.
Grandparent and Special Elders Reception
Directly after Mass Greeting, the Grandparent and Special Elders Reception is held to bring CAIS grandparents and special elders together to celebrate their commitment to CAIS, the community and Chinese New Year.
ShowCAIS is CAIS's annual gala, community builder and fundraiser and all-around fantastic party. There are many facets to ShowCAIS, including an online auction prior to the gala, a raffle of fantastic prizes, live auction at the event, party sign-ups leading up to the event and much more. The gala is held at a local San Francisco hotel and is a great way to dress up, dance the night away, all while supporting CAIS.
Back-to-School / End-of-Year Picnics
The annual Parent Association-organized picnics are a great way to come together, play games and spend an afternoon together at Julius Kahn Park.
Wednesday afternoons at CAIS are also known as "bun days." Directly after school lets out, students and parents line up on the first floor of our Oak Street campus for Chinese "bao" for an after school snack. The weekly sales are organized and run by the middle school student government and the money raised goes towards charities of the student government's choosing.
The CAIS Dance Troupe was founded in 2002 under the direction of Aiping Zhou. Today, the troupe is led by Peiling Kao. The troupe performs for the CAIS student body at Mass Greetings, school assemblies, the San Francisco Chinese New Year Parade, Asian Art Museum and various other special events.
The dances performed by the troupe represent the wide range of ethnic diversity found in China.
CAIS has three dance troupes consisting of seventh and eighth grades, fifth and sixth grades and fourth grade.