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January 2017

posted Jan 9, 2017, 12:38 PM by Teresa Higgins   [ updated Jan 10, 2017, 5:38 AM ]

From the Principal’s desk

It is that time of year when our world is a lot whiter and colder. Hopefully everyone enjoyed some fun and relaxing times together with family and friends during the holidays. Now that winter is upon us in full force, we are asking for your help. Snow or no snow, we go outside for recess, unless the temperature (with the wind chill factor considered) is 10 degrees or lower. Please, make sure your child comes to school prepared with appropriate outdoor clothing each day. Your child can bring in an extra pair of slippers or inside shoes to keep in the classroom.

Another part of this cold season is the possibility of snow day calls. Please, be prepared for any situation including a late start or unexpected early dismissal. Any decisions related to inclement weather are always made with the safety of students and staff in mind. Families often have to have a Plan A and Plan B during these months given the unknowns. We just like to remind parents to stay tuned to the radio/tv stations for announcements and plan accordingly for all possible situations.

At the end of this month, progress reports will be sent home- Friday, January 27th. Our teachers spend a considerable amount of time gathering and analyzing information to ensure accurate reporting about your child’s progress to date. If you have questions about your child’s progress after reviewing this report, please contact your child’s teacher directly. During the month of April, teachers will be offering another opportunity to formally meet about your child’s performance.

As always, please, feel free to contact me with questions or concerns that you may have.

Sincerely,


Susie Robbins, principal

Successful Students attend school regularly-

Schools are being asked to be more diligent in attendance matters. With that in mind, several times during the year, we review our attendance records and send letters home to parents/guardians of students with excessive absences or an excessive amount of tardies or early dismissals. We know that our students learn best when they are attending school regularly and do not have a large number of absences. We recognize that students miss school for a number of reasons: illness, family commitments, and student reluctance to name a few, but ultimately school attendance is the responsibility of the parent. If you need support with your child’s attendance, we have many staff members who are committed to providing the best educational opportunities possible for your child and who are willing to partner with you and your child to increase school attendance.

Attention: New Attendance Procedure

This fall MSAD#51 began the implementation of a new statewide procedure for marking a child’s attendance at school. If a child is not at school for three hours or longer, they will be marked absent for the entire day. This change may result in your child having more absences than they have had in the past.



Mr. Brookes’ class would like to thank everyone who participated in the 2016 MSAD 51 Penny Drive. Our total donation from Kindergarten through 8th grade was $1,351.60! Lots of less fortunate kids in Southern Maine had a much happier holiday because of this generous gift. Thank you for your help with this year’s penny drive!

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MSAD #51 Kindergarten Registration


Kindergarten registration for Cumberland-North Yarmouth will be held at Mabel I. Wilson School (353 Tuttle Road, Cumberland) the week of February 6-10. If your child will be five years old on or before October 15, 2017, he/she is eligible to attend kindergarten this fall. Please stop by the office between the hours of 8:00 am - 4:00 pm Monday-Friday to register. You will need to bring your child’s original birth certificate, immunization records and proof of residency with you at that time. Please be sure to check our school website (www.sites.google.com/a/msad51.org/mabel-i-wilson-school) for forms to fill out and more information prior to registration week or call us at 829-4825.


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If you have a student currently enrolled in a private school and would like them to attend first, second or third grade at the Mabel I. Wilson School, please register your child during this week. We want to be sure we include them in our placement process for the 2017-18 school year


Timeline of Events for Incoming Kindergarten Families

for 2017-18



February 6th-10th - Registration is held from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm Monday-Friday in the Conference Room at the Mabel I. Wilson School. Please bring your latest copy of immunization records, an original birth certificate, and proof of residency. Registration materials can be found online at Mabel I Wilson School Site. You can also sign up for a spring screening time which will be held in March.



Wednesday, March 15th- We will be offering a story time in our library from 1:30 pm- 3:00 pm. One of our librarians, Mrs. Young or Mrs. Driscoll, will read a story or two and we will have an assortment of literature activities set up for families to experience during this time.



Wednesday, April 26th- We will be holding a Kindergarten Overview Night from 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm. Parents of incoming kindergarten students are invited to attend this informational evening. We will discuss the next steps of this process including placement, kindergarten orientation, and screening.



Wednesday, May 3rd - We will be offering open gym time from 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm for all students new to the school. Mrs. Geoghan, one of our physical education teachers, will have a variety of station activities set up around the gym for families to rotate through at their leisure. Come meet Mrs. Geoghan and visit the gym.



Wednesday, June TBD - You and your children are invited to a picnic on the playground at the Wilson School! Please bring a picnic lunch to enjoy time with family and friends- both old and new. Come between 11:30 am and 12:30 pm to enjoy the company. The rain date for this event is Thursday, June 23rd.



July - The next time you hear from us will be in late July. At this time we will send you a letter telling you what classroom teacher your child will have in the fall. We will also send you information about kindergarten orientation and your child’s screening appointment.



Thursday, August TBD – Kindergarten Orientation is an opportunity for you to ride the bus to school with your child. While parents meet with administrators, the children will visit the classrooms. Our guidance counselors are present to help if there are transition issues that day. This event will last approximately 1 hour.



August & Sept TBD.– Fall Kindergarten Screening will be done during the first two days of school. The fall screening gives the teacher and child the opportunity for some 1:1 time as well as provides the teacher with current information. Your child will have an appointment for one of the first three days of school. Your child will be scheduled for an assigned screening time when you receive the letter with your child’s teacher’s name this summer.



TBD - Mabel I Wilson School Fall Family Cookout. Information will be coming home the first week of school about this event.

TBD - A Curriculum Night - This informational night will be an opportunity for parents to meet the kindergarten teachers, get an overview of kindergarten expectations and classroom support, and hear the ways you can be involved in your child’s education. This event is for parents only.

December 2016

posted Dec 13, 2016, 6:16 AM by Teresa Higgins

From the Principal’s desk    

 

Thank you all for your support of the annual Book Fair in the Wilson School Library.  This week has seen many smiles as children receive new books.  It is nice to see that books still bring joy in these days of electronics!

It is the time of year when the weather gets cold, and we are asking for your help. Students will go outside for recess, unless the temperature (with the wind chill factor considered) is 10 degrees or lower. Please, make sure your child comes to school prepared with appropriate outdoor clothing each day.


Another part of this cold season is the possibility of snow day calls. Please, be prepared for any situation including a late start or unexpected early dismissal. Any decisions related to inclement weather are always made with the safety of students and staff in mind. Families often have to have a Plan A and Plan B during these months given the unknowns. We just like to remind parents to stay tuned to the radio/tv stations for announcements and plan accordingly for all possible situations.



Sincerely,


Susie Robbins, principal

srobbins@msad51.org



In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page:

Mabel I Wilson School website

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.



Staff members can be reached via email, which are structured the same for all staff- firstnameinitiallastname@msad51.org, such as srobbins@msad51.org for Susie Robbins, principal

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Penny Drive!

A school wide penny drive will be happening Dec. 5 through Dec. 16th.  Proceeds will be donated to the Portland Press Herald Toy Fund, an organization that provides holiday presents to the children of needy families in southern Maine. The total of our collection will be announced on Tues., Dec. 22nd. Please help by sending in your pennies by Dec. 16th.  (Other coins, checks, and bills will also be gratefully accepted.)

Thank you!  

Mr. Brookes’ 5th Grade


Lost & Found

Please, check in to see if anything in our lost & found pile belongs to your child. The lost & found is located near the library entrance. We will donate items that do not have names written in them during the holiday break.


Dear Parents and Guardians of MIW students:


With respect and understanding of current economic times in our community and beyond, we are writing to share local and state resources for your family, friends and neighbors. These resources are available for those needing support as well as those who wish to donate or volunteer services.

Community Resources:

Food:

The Food Pantry at the Cumberland Town Hall is open Fridays 2:00-6:00, receiving donations at any time.

Heating assistance:

PROP Keep Me Warm 553-5900

Cumberland Congregational Church 829-3419

Town of Cumberland General Assistance: Confidential financial assistance to residents who are having difficulty meeting basic needs for housing, utilities and food. 829-2200

Town of North Yarmouth General Assistance: 829-3705

Toys for the holidays:

Firefighters for Kids: Cumberland Fire Department. For more information about donating or receiving toys, e-mail ff4kids@yahoo.com.

Clothing and other items:

Falmouth Goodwill Store: U.S. Route One Falmouth Shopping Center 347-8252

Portland Free Cycle: www.portlandfreecycle.org

A grassroots, nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns and thus keeping good stuff out of landfills. Membership is free.

The Community Center Thrift Shop: Freeport 865-3985

Free and reduced cost dental care:

Preventive Partners: 694-3332

Cumberland County Dental Health Center: 874-1028

University of New England Dental Health Services: 221-4900

Referrals and resources:

Call 211 or e-mail www.211maine.org for a list of state-wide resources, services and volunteer opportunities.

MIW Resources – please call us for services (all inquiries are confidential)

Holiday Support

Winter clothing

Counseling referrals

Free and reduced lunch for students at school

Prescription drug discount card (contact school nurse)

Glasses prescription discount card for financially eligible families (contact school nurse)


For inquiries about holiday support, please call or email:

Becky Dilworth: 829-4825 x134, rdilworth@msad51.org

Kate Stawarz: 829-4825 x 138, kstawarz@msad51.org

Dawn Lane: 829-4825 x152, dlane@msad51.org



school-attendance-matters.pngSuccessful Students attend school regularly-


Happy Holidays! As we take a short break from school for the upcoming holiday break, we want to express our gratitude for everyone who makes it possible for as many students as possible to come to school every day, on time, and ready to learn. We thank:

● our students and families for making daily attendance a priority, since they know the habit of attendance will help them do well with their learning in the classroom and the larger world around them in the future,

● our wonderful teachers and support staff who pour their energy into making each classroom an exciting place for exploration and knowledge, so the students do not want to miss out on any learning, and

● our community partners and volunteers who provide extra hands and attention our students’ needs.

We appreciate each one of you so much. We look forward to seeing you after the December break. Also, we hope you will keep in mind that the last day of school before the break is Thursday, December 22nd, and we will reopen on Tuesday, January 3rd. We hope that you enjoy some fun and relaxing times with your friends and family during this time. We especially appreciate everyone’s efforts to avoid taking extra time off around the holiday break. Just a few missed days here and there, even if they are excused absences, can add up to too much lost learning time and leave your child struggling in school. This is as true in kindergarten as it is in high school. So, once again, thank you for your efforts. Wishing you a Happy Holiday Season!



November 2016 Newsletter

posted Nov 7, 2016, 9:01 AM by Teresa Higgins

From the Principal’s desk     


Conferences are being held during the months of October and November, so if you haven’t heard from your child’s teacher yet about scheduling a conference, please get in touch with her. These conferences provide a very valuable opportunity for home-school communication.


On October 19th, the PTO sponsored a new event at MIW called “The Grand Event,” which was attended by hundreds of students and their grandparents and/or grandfriends, and many parents as well. We are so grateful to have such an involved parent group to see this need and address it with such intensity. The event was a huge success, due to many people’s dedication and commitment to our students. We hope that this event will continue for many years to come.


We are looking forward to our first school assembly next Wednesday.  We will be learning about our new composting procedures for our lunch room.  Thank you to Lauryn Entwistle and the Green Team members for their work organizing this.  We are  aiming for a Zero -waste lunch!


As the year progresses, please provide us with feedback. We like to hear what is going well and what we should consider doing differently. Feel free to contact me with questions or concerns at any time.  


Sincerely,


Susie Robbins, principal

srobbins@msad51.org

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

It is that time of year when the weather gets cold, and we are asking for your help. Students will go outside for recess, unless the temperature (with the wind chill factor considered) is 10 degrees or lower. Please, make sure your child comes to school prepared with appropriate outdoor clothing each day.

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Dates to remember:

11/9/16 Wednesday is a full day of school

11/10/16 is School Photo Retake Day

11/11/16 Veterans Day/No School

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school-attendance-matters.pngWhy Attendance Matters

Help Your Child Succeed In School:  Build the Habit of Good Attendance Early


Did you know?

• Starting in kindergarten, too many absences can cause children to fall behind in school.

• Missing 10 percent (or about 18 days) can make it harder to learn to read.

• Students can still fall behind if they miss just a day or two every few weeks (and can equal 18 days very quickly)

• Absences can affect the whole classroom if the teacher has to slow down learning to help children catch up.

• Attending school regularly helps children feel better about school-and themselves.  Start building this habit so they learn right away that going to school on time, every day is important.


What You Can D0?

• Set a regular bedtime and morning routine.

• Lay out clothes and pack backpacks the night before.

• Introduce your child to his or her teachers before school starts to help with the transition.

• Don’t let your child stay home unless he or she is truly sick.  

• Sometimes stomach aches can be a sign of anxiety and not a reason to stay home.

• If your child seems anxious to go to school, talk to teachers, school counselors or other parents for advice on how to help your child feel more comfortable and excited about learning.

• Avoid medical appointments and extended trips when school is in session.


Good attendance will help your child do well in school, college and at work.

This was adapted with permission from Attendance Works at attendanceworks.org

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ART News:

Mrs. Matusko is looking for future project items and is collecting:

Oatmeal containers with covers(cylinder) and Yarn

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Are you interested in Girl Scouts?
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October 2016 Newsletter

posted Oct 7, 2016, 11:41 AM by Teresa Higgins

From the Principal’s desk     


We have had a successful start to the school year in many ways. We held two curriculum nights and our annual fall cookout with great participation. In addition, we are continuing our efforts to foster a safe and caring learning community for our students, staff, and parents. We are teaching and reinforcing consistent expectations for behavior in the hallways and lunchroom. The students are working hard to be safe, respectful, and responsible as they move about the building.  We have also had two fire drills and one evacuation drill.  In all three events we were able to exit from the building in under 2:30 minutes.


Conferences are coming up during the months of October and November, so it is likely that you will be seeing sign-ups coming your way soon. Please, know that teachers are given the choice to schedule during this two-month window. Some teachers choose earlier and some teachers choose later, so don’t be surprised if you have several children with very different conference schedules.


As the year progresses, please provide us with feedback. We like to hear what is going well and what we should consider doing differently. So, please let us know how we can help your children be successful students here at Wilson School. Please, feel free to contact me with questions or concerns at any time.  


Sincerely,


Susie Robbins, principal

srobbins@msad51.org



In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page:

Mabel I Wilson School website

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.



If you were unable to attend your child’s Curriculum Night, feel free to view the presentation that was held in the Multipurpose Room in the beginning of the evening.


K, 1 Curriculum Night


2/MA, 3  Curriculum Night



Clarification on School Hours


Many people have asked for clarification on our new school hours.  The school day runs from 8:45 - 3:15.  Buses begin drop off at 8:15.  We do have an early arrival time of 8:00 with ed tech supervision on the playground and in the lunchroom if some students want breakfast.  Anyone can access the early arrival by calling the school office and adding your child's name to the attendance list.  I hope this clarifies the new process.  Feel free to email or call if you have questions.



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MIW PE News





September 2016

posted Sep 9, 2016, 11:04 AM by Teresa Higgins   [ updated Sep 12, 2016, 6:42 AM ]

From the Principal’s desk     

Each year is a new and exciting beginning for our students. Last week, we had two days with our first through third grade students before our kindergarten students started this week on Tuesday. Students seem to be adjusting to being back at school and learning the routines of their new classrooms, along with making new friends and seeing old friends at recess. Discussions about being safe, respectful, and responsible are happening in all areas of the building with special focus on classrooms, hallways, and lunchroom settings.


Wednesday night we held our annual fall cookout. We were a little worried about the weather, but the event was still a success.

Our curriculum nights are coming up over the next couple weeks-

  • Tuesday, September 13th @ 5:30 for Kindergarten and First Grade Classes

  • Thursday, September 15th @ 5:30 for Multiage, Second, and Third Grade Classes

On both nights, we will start our event in the multipurpose room. Please do not go into the classrooms prior to the gathering in the multipurpose room.


Just like last year, we will be working with Count ME In to address elementary student absenteeism. A recent study shows that students who missed 2 to 4 days in September were 5 times more likely to be chronically absent during the school year than students who missed fewer than 2 days. Students who missed 4 days in September were over 16 times more likely to be chronically absent. (Olson, 2014) For more information visit Count ME In’s website: countmeinmaine.org.


I hope that everyone is off to a good start. Please feel free to contact me with questions or concerns at any time.  


Sincerely,

Susie Robbins, principal



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Our twitter handle is:  MIWMSAD51


Our facebook URL is: www.facebook.com/MIWMSAD51




In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page:

Mabel I Wilson School website

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.


Reminders from the Office

Office hours are 7:30-4:15 every day.

* If your child is tardy to school, he/she needs to check-in at the office first.

* Whenever you enter the school, please go to the main office prior to going to a classroom or any other learning space. It is important to know who is in our building at all times. We appreciate your cooperation with this safety measure.

* We recognize that mornings can be very hectic, but please remember to send a note in with your child if there is a change in their afternoon schedule, such as a parent pick-up or change in bus. Without a note, we will follow the regular routine for each child. Please, do not leave messages on voicemail regarding a change in afternoon dismissal routine. Please, call before 2:30 with changes.


Staff members can be reached via email, which are structured the same for all staff- firstnameinitiallastname@msad51.org, such as srobbins@msad51.org for Susie Robbins, principal.


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HELP WANTED - Volunteers Needed

Please, check with your child’s teacher about volunteering opportunities. We appreciate having parents partner with us and provide support during the school day or even from home. Volunteers do need to fill out an application and be approved.





SAFETY FIRST

A priority at Wilson School is keeping our students safe. We acknowledge how difficult learning can be if a child is worried about their well-being and safety. We want children to be physically safe, but also emotionally safe to take risks. We have many procedures in place to form a safe environment for our students. We have specific routines for arrival and dismissal to help support these goals.

Supervision starts at 8:00 in the morning, so children should not be dropped off at school prior to that time. Please, make sure you go directly to the office any time that you are visiting or dismissing your child. All children need to be signed out before they can be dismissed. Anyone dismissing a child from school will need to show identification before being allowed to remove the child from school grounds. Also, we ask that you wait for your child, instead of going to the classroom to avoid disturbing the learning of others.

During the year, we will practice many types of safety drills to plan for different circumstances. Fire drills are quite routine to the children. We have had a couple already, and the children are able to exit the building in under two minutes! In addition to fire drills, we practice lockdown drills and evacuation drills. These plans are for different situations that may arise. We hope that we don’t need to implement these plans, but want to be prepared. Although you may not have practiced these drills as a child, they are important in our day and age to be prepared for a variety of situations. As a staff, we tell children that at school we practice many different routines that we may need to use in order to keep everyone safe. We will be practicing both a lockdown drill at some point this year.

We thank you for your efforts in keeping the children safe at all times.




Arrival and  Dismissal Procedures for the Mabel I. Wilson School

It is of great importance that Mabel I. Wilson School be a safe place for your student.   Please familiarize yourself with the following drop off/pick-up procedures.  Your cooperation with these procedures allows us to ensure safe arrival and departure for all students.  Every effort is made to supervise and protect your student during these times however, you may help by following the procedures.  As you know, the safety of children is a priority.


The School day begins at 8:45 a.m., with students being allowed into their classrooms after 8:30 a.m.  Students arriving before that time (between 8:15 and 8:30 a.m.) will be directed to the playground where they will be supervised by staff until being released to their classrooms at 8:30 a.m. If you are bringing your child to school, please use the drop-off area near the superintendent’s office. Please, avoid driving through the bus circle, especially during arrival and dismissal times. If you plan to walk your child into the school, please park elsewhere in the parking lot to avoid taking up the quick drop-off spots. There is no supervision prior to 8:15. Students arriving after 8:45 a.m. will be considered tardy and must report to the office before going to their classrooms. The School day ends at 3:15 p.m.--with the exception of Early Release Wednesdays when the school day ends at 12:30 p.m. Please, see the district calendar on the district website for specific dates of early releases.



School Dismissal Procedures

The end of the school day is quite busy —and instruction continues until the bell rings at the end of the school day.  In order to minimize disruption to the classroom, the following procedures for dismissal have been put into place:


  • Walkers – Walkers are students who do not ride the bus and are released without supervision on a routine, regular basis.  If your student will be released as a walker on a regular basis during the week (i.e., every day, MWF, T,Th, etc.), please inform the classroom teacher.  Please, keep in mind that the school is only responsible for your child while he/she is at school during school hours. If a student has permission to be dismissed as a walker, the school cannot account for his/her whereabouts once he/she is dismissed from the classroom.


  • Parent Pick-Up – Parent Pick-Ups are students who are met by a parent or supervising person. If your child will be released as a parent pick-up on a regular basis during the week (i.e., every day, MWF, T,Th, etc.), please obtain and complete a Change in Dismissal Permission Form from the office and return it to the classroom teacher).  “Parent Pick-Up” is the first group of students to be released at the end of the day.   Parents/Supervising Persons need to go to the multi-purpose room, sign the child/children out and wait in the multi-purpose room until students are dismissed. Please, use the entrance on the Tuttle Rd side of the building to enter and exit. This door will be unlocked at 3:10 for the purpose of dismissing students for parent pick-ups, and 12:25 on early release Wednesdays. Please, do not park in handicap spots or block others into spaces while waiting for your child. Also, please remember to have proper identification with you.


  • Buses – after the release of Walkers and Parent Pick-Ups, students are released by bus numbers as called by the secretary.


Frequently asked questions about Dismissal

  • Why can’t I go directly to my son/daughter’s classroom to wait for him/her?  Because instructional time is so precious, we want to minimize disruptions to the classroom. While it may seem harsh, our experience has been that allowing those parents who are picking up children to go to the classroom has been disruptive. Please know that we are not trying to keep you from your children; we are merely trying to protect the learning environment until the end of the school day. In addition, we want to make sure all students arrive safely at their expected destinations at the end of every day.




Highly-Qualified Teacher Notification:

At Wilson School, we are very proud of our teachers. We feel that they are ready for the coming school year and are prepared to give your child a high-quality education. As a Title I school, we must meet federal rules related to teacher qualifications as defined in No Child Left Behind. These rules allow you to learn more about your child’s teacher’s training and credentials. We are happy to provide this information to you. At any time, you may ask:


  • Whether the teacher met state qualifications and certification requirements for the grade level and subject he/she is teaching,


  • Whether the teacher received an emergency or conditional certificate through which state qualifications were waived, and


  • What undergraduate or graduate degrees the teacher holds, including graduate certificates and additional degrees, and major(s) or area(s) of concentration.


You may also ask whether your child receives help from a paraprofessional. If your child receives this assistance, we can provide you with information about the paraprofessional’s qualifications.


Our staff is committed to helping your child develop the academic knowledge and critical thinking he/she needs to succeed in school and beyond. That commitment includes making sure that all of our teachers and paraprofessionals are highly skilled.



Food_packages_(1).jpgFood for Friends Food Pantry

Our school will be participating in a yearlong community service project to gather needed provisions for our local Food Pantry. The Food Pantry was established in 1984 to serve those in need in the greater Cumberland / North Yarmouth area. It is located in the Cumberland Town Hall on Tuttle Rd. The coordinator, Jean Lamson, will be accepting our donations each month. The Pantry is in continuous need of non-perishable store-bought foods that do not require refrigeration. We will have a tote outside of our classrooms to collect items throughout the month. An updated shopping list will come home as a friendly reminder if you and your child would like to donate. We invite you and your child to review the list and to select a few items when you are at the market. There is no obligation to participate in this effort. Thank you for your kind and generous support.



***  From the K-5 Math Coaches, Clare Harrington and Shannon Peterson


Welcome back to school! We know that parents are their children’s first teachers. We also know that math homework today may look different from what you experienced when you went to school which makes it difficult to support your child. Here is a letter from former National Council of Teachers of Mathematics President J. Michael Shaughnessy that gives helpful advice on how you can help and support your child.


Attitude can make all the difference in achieving success. Helping your children believe in themselves and that learning can take time and effort is valuable skill. The beginning of the school year is a great time to establish a positive, supportive homework environment. Your student can learn anything. Click here for a short video reminder on this.


Helpful, positive comments for homework


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