This page has answers to some of the most frequently asked questions I've received over the years from parents (and sometimes from students, too). If you have a question that you don't see listed here, contact me and I'll be happy to answer it.

"What can I do at home to help my child succeed in school?"

There are many things that parents can do to help their child at home. Here are a few helpful tips.

  • Ask your child about his/her day at school every day. I'm sure that you already do this, but something this simple shows the interest and support from a parent that a child routinely needs. It also opens up discussion about what was learned in school, leading to memory recall and comprehension.
  • Make sure that your child has a quiet place where homework can be done without interruption. Set aside time every evening to look over your child's homework together after it has been completed.
  • Read every night with your child, and casually use some discussion questions and prompts to help guide your reading time together. Don't make the main focus of your reading time about asking questions though. This should be a time for enjoying stories together, not a time to test. Just throw in a question or two here and there when it feels natural.
  • Make sure your child is practicing his/her math facts every week. This can be done with flashcards, or with websites like XtraMath.
  • Check your child's planner and home folder every afternoon for homework, notes, and other important information.
  • Log in to ProgressBook weekly to keep tabs on your child's grades.
  • Check out the parent resources section of this website for more helpful information and links.
  • Contact me to set up a time to meet to discuss your child's progress.

"How does the planner work?"

The planner is where your child's homework assignments get written down. It can also be a place for communication between you and me.

Every other week, students will be given a new planner that will last for two weeks. Students are responsible for copying down homework assignments from the board into their planners each afternoon in class. I stress to my students that it is their responsibility to write down the homework every day in class. I will not do it for them.

Planners then go home every afternoon to be signed or initialed by a parent/guardian. I will stamp a MISSING HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT notice in the planner for any missing work when I come around the next morning to initial the planners myself.

Remember that you can always check the homework section of this website to find out what the nightly homework assignments are as well.

"What happens if homework is not completed or turned in on time? Can my child make up a late assignment?"

Students that do not complete or turn in their homework on time will receive a MISSING HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT notice stamped on their planner. Students can still turn in late assignments, but they will lose five minutes of their Free Time Friday (see next question) for each assignment not completed on time.

Homework is given to help students practice what we have already done in class. It should always be a review and an application of the skills we are working on. Your child will never have homework with material that has not been explained and/or practiced in class. In other words, you should never hear, "We didn't learn this," when your child is talking to you about his/her homework.

"What is Free Time Friday?"

If there is time at the end of the week, students get about 15 minutes of free time in the classroom. Students can sit and chat with each other, draw, play games, build with LEGO, and more.

Free Time Friday (FTF) is not a given, however. It must be earned through a week of hard work, solid effort, good behavior, and completed assignments. Students that have not met these requirements lose five-minute increments of their FTF. Seeing that FTF lasts only about 15 minutes, students that are not on top of their work and behavior during the week can quickly lose all of it.

"What happens if my child is absent?"

Absent students will be given sufficient time to make up any assignment(s). Parents can contact the office to request that all missed work gets dropped off there by me. If I receive the request before the end of the day, I will bring the missed work to the office to be picked up by you at your convenience. Otherwise, your student will bring home the missed work when he/she returns to school.

"What should I do if my child needs to be picked up early from school?"

Please e-mail me or send a note to school that day telling me what time you plan to pick your child up. This will give me time to make sure that your child is packed and ready to be sent to the office when you arrive. If I do not receive notice about an early pickup, I cannot guarantee that your child will be ready to go when called down to the office.

"What is the class grading scale?"

Barberton Elementary West uses a plus, check, and minus system for grades in second grade. Check the grades section of this website to learn more about the percentage equivalent of this system, and how these grades are put into ProgressBook.

"Is there extra credit?"

Opportunities for extra credit will likely not happen in second grade. If for some reason an extra credit opportunity does come up though, parents and students will be made well aware.

"How can I check my child's progress?"

You can check this by going to the Parent Access portion of ProgressBook. Click on the grades section of our website to find out more information about the input of grades and logging in to check them.

"Can we meet to talk about my child's progress?"

Sure thing. Contact me so we can set up a time that works for both of us. If we can't find a time to meet face-to-face, we can set up a phone conference instead.

"My child's birthday is during the school year. Can I send in a treat?"

Absolutely. If you plan on sending something to school to share, I only ask that a few guidelines are followed...

  • Any items sent in must be store-bought, not homemade (district policy).
  • Please let me know at least one day in advance so I can set aside time for the treat. I can also let you know how many students we have in our class, as well as allergy information. If I am not given notice, then we might not have time during the day to enjoy what you send in.
  • Please send something simple, easy to pass out, and easy to clean up like cupcakes, doughnuts, cookies, or individually-wrapped snacks. No cake or ice cream, please. Juice boxes are fine, but please nothing that should be poured into cups.
  • Please include paper plates and napkins.

"I'm finding little random pictures all over this website. What's the deal?"

You mean little pictures that seem...out of place? Like they have nothing to do with what you're reading about? Like that notebook over there to the right?? Well then, you're finding items for the scavenger hunt without even realizing it!