ABCs For "KinderBear Parents"
ABSENCES If your child is absent, please remember to send in an excuse the following day. You may send a doctors note or a written explanation of why your child was absent. If we do not receive an excuse within the 3 days following the absence, it will be marked as unexcused.
Attendance A successful school experience is the responsibility of the children, the parents, and the school. Your childs progress, both academically and socially, is influenced to a great extent by daily participation. Regular attendance without tardiness is a key.
Alphabet Knowledge We will learn the letters of the alphabet and the sounds that the letters make. At the beginning of the year, I will assess each childs knowledge of the alphabet.
Arrival Students should plan to arrive between 7:30-7:50 AM. They should not arrive prior to 7:30 AM, since supervision is not available by the school staff. Upon arrival, children gather in the hallway with supervising teachers. If you would like, you may walk your child to our classroom door, but we ask that you get those last hugs and kisses before you reach the classroom. Remember, Qick Good-byes = Dry Eyes! ( One crying child usually sets off a chain reaction.)
Art Your child will attend art, with Miss Vincent, once every 6 days. We will also incorporate many art projects into our Kindergarten classroom curriculum.
Bear-y Good Behavior We will be using a color coded card system, for our behavior management system, which helps students take ownership and responsibility for their choices each day. Please refer to the attached description and remember to ask to see your childs Good Note every day!
Birthdays Birthdays are special occasions for young children, but we are not allowed to have birthday parties. If you like, your child may bring a special treat for the class on his/her special day. We will distribute that during our usual snack time. Of course, you may come have lunch with your child on his/her birthday, too. (We are not allowed to distribute personal birthday party invitations, unless one is sent for each member of the class.)
Book bags Children will need a book bag (non-rolling) to help them carry messages and information to and from school. Please review the contents of the book bag daily, with your child. Be sure to clean it out each night, taking out completed work and Good Notes. Children will also use book bags to bring a rest towel and snack each day, so they will not have room to carry old papers and unnecessary items to school.
Book Orders Each month, I will send home a book order form for you and your child to look over together. Scholastic Book Clubs offer wonderful books at reduced prices, giving you an excellent way to build your childs personal home library. If you would like to order, please send checks payable to Scholastic Book Clubs, OR the exact cash amount, along with the completed order form. Be sure to put your childs name on the order form.
Breakfast Please allow for a good breakfast and bathroom routine at home each morning. A small breakfast is served in the cafeteria, beginning at 7:30 each morning. Kindergarten children who eat in the cafeteria will be sent to their classrooms at 7:50.
Centers Most kindergarten children learn easily through active play. Our classroom provides for this in our literacy and play centers. Activities are planned, in each center, to review and develop skills, and meet the needs of all students in the classroom.
Clothes Please dress you child in comfortable clothes that are appropriate for the weather AND kindergarten activities. We will go outside almost every day, so comfortable shoes are a necessity, too. (Please, no flip flopsthey are not safe on the playground, especially.) Students must wear tennis shoes on the days we have P.E.!
Communication Good communication between school and home plays a vital role in your childs success throughout the year. Any time you have a concern and feel the need to talk with me, please call the school at 595-2311, send a note with your child, or send me an e-mail. I will get back with you as soon as I can. I can usually speak with you before or after school, but not during the instructional day.
Conferences Parent/Teacher conferences will be held at least twice during the school year. At these conferences, we will discuss your childs accomplishments, strengths/weaknesses, behavior, and overall progress. Please feel free to schedule additional conferences , at any time throughout the year, if the need arises. I look forward to our conversations together!
Computers In our classroom, your child will use a variety of age-appropriate programs to reinforce math and pre-reading/reading skills. Also, we go to the computer lab, once every six days, to use computers with various software programs. These are exciting ways for the children to learn kindergarten computer competencies.
Differentiation Because all children are unique and special, they may be at different instructional levels. In order to grow each child to a higher level, students may sometimes be working on concepts different from their peers. With this type of teaching in the classroom, you can be sure that your childs individual needs will be met.
Discipline - My philosophy of discipline is based on the belief that children need affectionate care and firm guidelines within a flexible structure. To establish good order and help the children learn self-control, the children will be guided to respect themselves and others through specific directions, positive reinforcement, suggested new activities, and responsible actions.
Dismissal Dismissal time begins at 2:20 with car riders. All children who are car riders are dismissed at the front of the school, along the sidewalk. No child is released unless an authorized adult is present to pick him/her up. Bus riders will be dismissed at 2:25.
Emergency Cards Your child will have a student information sheet on file in the office, but I need to have you complete an emergency card for me to have in the classroom. You will need to provide at least 2 working phone numbers, in order for me to contact parents in case of illness or an emergency. You will also have to include the names of persons authorized to pick up your child. Please be sure to notify me if any of those phone numbers change during the year.
Envelopes When sending money to school, whether cash or check, please send it in a sealed envelope. Be sure to label it with your childs name, what the money is for, and my name. This will help insure that all money gets to school and that we know what to do with it.
Email Please feel free to contact me through my school email address: email@example.com I will get back with you as soon as possible.
Field Trips We plan several field trips, throughout the year, that are both educational and fun. We usually do not need parent volunteers for these trips, but if we do, they will be taken on a first come, first served basis. Parents must attend volunteer training sessions, in order to participate in most volunteer activities.
Fire Drills Fire drills will be held each month. All students will participate and are expected to walk quickly and quietly to their designated exit. We will practice and become familiar with procedures before our first scheduled drill.
Footwear Please have your child wear shoes that are appropriate for running and active movement every day. Children are required to wear tennis shoes on the days we go to P.E. (We will not change shoes before/after we go to P.E.)
Fund Raisers Our school participates in several fund raisers, throughout the year, to raise money for various needed items and projects for our school. We hope that everyone can participate, but it is not required.
Good Notes - This note system is our way of letting you know what kind of day your child had at school. If your child has at least one color card left in the behavior chart at the end of the day, then he/she will bring home a Good Note.
Guided Reading The definition of guided reading encompasses a wide variety of behaviors. Some children may be working on alphabet recognition; some may require teacher support to read stories with predictable text; others may read simple texts independently. Guided reading provides an opportunity to teach children the variety of reading strategies they need in order to become fluent, independent readers. Your child will be involved in these small groups during our workshop time.
Handbook Please keep your KinderBear Handbook as a reference throughout this entire year. Many of your questions will be answered in the handbook.
Hands-On Learning Meaningful, hands-on activities will be used to help learn important concepts and make learning fun for our KinderBears. There will be times when seatwork is necessary and required, but we will always strive to make our classroom an active learning environment.
Homework Homework will begin at a later date. You will receive more about it in a future newsletter. I do ask that you keep school supplies at home, as well, so that your child can cut, color, paste, and write at home for special projects or homework assignments.
Illness The question of when to keep your child home from school is often a difficult one, especially when decisions must be made first thing in the morning. It is important, however, to keep your child at home if he/she is ill. This helps to make them more comfortable and prevents others from becoming ill. Children function more effectively when they are healthy. Please do not send your child to school if he/she has experienced fever or vomiting within the previous 24 hours. Also, please do not give your child a fever reducing medication, when he/she is sick and send him/her on to school. This only exposes others to illness and usually results in parents being called to come pick up their child.
Immunizations All students must be immunized against certain diseases or must present a statement that the student should not be immunized. Proof of immunizations must be presented to the school within 30 days of enrollment.
Independent Reading Because children learn to read by reading, they need plenty of opportunities to read independently. Sufficient time and appropriate materials are necessary to develop and strengthen reading abilities. By giving children time to read both at school and at home, we can work together to provide a literature-rich environment and a life-long love of reading.
Journals One strategy that will be used to help convey the vital concept that print conveys meaning is the frequent use of journal writing. In these journals, kindergarteners combine their emerging writing skills with their drawing skills. As the children are exposed to a variety of phonics and reading experiences, journal entries will move from drawings and inventive spellings towards more conventional spelling.
KinderBears (My Kindergarten Kids) Kindergarten is a special time for your child. I want to make this a wonderful experience for you and your child. Kids come first!
Kindness KinderBears are encouraged and expected to treat all members of our class, as well as others, with kindness and respect. Hitting, fighting, name-calling and making fun of others will not be permitted.
Lunch Children may either purchase lunch or bring it from home. The cost for lunch is $2.35. If you send lunch with your child, please be sure to help your KinderBear learn how to open/handle all food and drink items. Since our lunch time is very short, please make lunches simple and nutritious. (No candy and no soda, please) A lunch menu will be sent home each month. Parents may visit for lunch on any day AFTER Oct 1st. The children need the first month to adjust to school and our routines. Early in the year, when parents visit, it always upsets someone, even if it isnt your child, so lets give them all time to make that adjustment. When you visit for lunch, you may wait for us at the cafeteria door at 10:40.
Lost And Found Lost & Found is located in the hallway near the Art room. Please check the collection for any missing items. Labeling all items your child wears to school will help make sure it is returned to the owner.
Math The kindergarten mathematics curriculum provides students with mathematical experiences that help them develop number sense and a positive attitude towards mathematics, that will continue throughout their school career and their lives. Math concepts will be taught with literature, hands-on activities, and some seatwork.
Media/Library Mr. Houston is our Media teacher and will see our class once every 6 days. Children will be allowed to check out a book to bring home, but it must be returned before the next Media day. Please take the time to read and enjoy these books with your child.
Medications - Your childs doctor must fill out a medication form in order for any medications to be given at school. Students are not allowed to keep any medicine in their possession. We will secure all medications and give them according to directions from your childs doctor. We must have the doctors written permission for all medications, even over the counter drugs.
Music Our class will visit Mrs. John once every 6 days, to learn the basics of music education and to learn some wonderful songs. We also incorporate a lot of music into our daily classroom activities.
Newsletter I will send home at least one newsletter each month to keep you informed of the happenings in our classroom. This will help to keep you informed about our curriculum, classroom news, special activities and upcoming events.
Notes - Written notes are required for the following reasons: absences/illnesses, early dismissal for doctor appointments, any change in afternoon transportation(person picking up / method of transportation / change in bus stop).
Open Communication Lets keep the lines of communication open! Please let me know if you have ANY concerns or questions about your child throughout the year. I feel that it is our job to work together, as partners, to help your child have a successful first year. You can call the school and leave me a message, send a note with your child or email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Parties We will have class parties at Christmas and the end of the year picnic. We will celebrate other events by having a special snack on that day. The room parents will discuss possible ideas with me and then organize these events and coordinate volunteers / donations. I hope you all will be willing to help, in some way, so that the children will enjoy the festivities!
P.E. Our class will have PE once every six days. Mrs. Diamont is the PE teacher and works with the children to promote a healthy lifestyle.
Pledge of Allegiance / Moment of Silence Every morning we will recite the pledge to the U.S. flag and observe a moment of silence .
PTA Our school PTA provides many extras for your childs education. Please support them with your membership. We want our class to have 100% membership, so each student needs one parent or grandparent to join, in order for us to reach our goal!
Questions Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns regarding your childs education. I will make every effort to meet with you and discuss your concerns.
Recess We will go outside for recess almost every day this year. Please keep this in mind as you choose your childs clothing and shoes each day.
Report Cards Your child will receive a report card each quarter (every nine weeks). The report card reflects the progress your child has made toward various kindergarten objectives. (Refer to Quarterly Expectations.)
Restrooms The children are encouraged to go to the bathroom as soon as they come into school, in the morning. We will take restroom breaks as a class several times a day. All other times, children are free to go if the need arises.
Rules Please discuss the attached classroom rules with your children and let them know that you believe it is important to display good behavior, by following classroom and school-wide rules. We will discuss our rules during our first week of school and take the time to practice following them, along with our daily procedures, during the first month of school. Be sure to check your childs Good Note every day, so you can praise or correct behaviors displayed that day.
Safety Your childs safety is top priority. I take every precaution when your child is in my care. Please send a note with your child, or call the school if he/she is to go home a different way. If no written note is received, your child will be sent home by his/her usual method of transportation.
Science The focus of our kindergarten science curriculum is on developing an awareness of the world in which we live. Some of the topics of our studies will be plants and animals; the five senses and general health; and changes in ourselves and our environment, over time.
Scholastic News We will be using a weekly childrens newspaper as part of our Science and Social Studies curriculum. This newspaper, specifically designed for kindergarteners, helps us integrate reading instruction into other subject areas. The cost per child is $5.50 for the years subscription. Please send that amount to school in a sealed, labeled envelope. (No checks, please) We will need to mail our class payment by the second week of school, so please send in your childs payment as soon as possible. Every child will need his/her own subscription.
Shared Reading This is an interactive process used with the whole class, where the teacher reads a story and the children join in on the phrases or words that they know. In subsequent readings, the children are able to read more of the story. This shared reading is a chance for the teacher to model fluency in reading, conventions of print, and the use of reading strategies.
Shining Stars Your child will be featured as our classroom star for one week. Please refer to the attached schedule and directions. Your childs pictures will be displayed during his/her week.
Snack Every child needs to bring a small snack to school each day. A few crackers, grapes, sliced apples, or sliced oranges make an excellent snack. Please keep it small.and remember no drinks, no candy, and nothing that must be eaten with a spoon.
Social Studies The kindergarten social studies curriculum focuses on the students and how they relate to their families, classroom, school, and community. Activities will help the children focus their natural curiosity for the world around them.
Specials We refer to our special area classes as specials. We will have specials on a 6-day rotation schedule. These classes include Art, Music, Library, PE., and Guidance. I will send home a specials rotation calendar, so that you will know when to be sure your child wears tennis shoes and when to return library books .
Student Numbers Each child is assigned a student number by our school system. Your child will bring this number home, to be learned and memorized. He/she will use it in the library, computer lab and lunch room. Each child will enter their own number as they go through the cafeteria line and on the computer when they go to the computer lab. Please help your child memorize this number as soon as possible.
Transportation If you plan to pick up a child that normally rides a bus, if you wish for your car rider to take the bus to a previously approved bus stop, or you wish for your child to ride a different bus than usual, you must send a written note. Do not rely on your child to tell us this information because children often become confused and relay information incorrectly. If no written note is received, your child will be sent home by his/her usual method of transportation.
Towel Be sure that your child has a regular sized bath towel in his/her book bag EACH day. Please send a clean towel with your child as often as you feel is necessary.
Tuesday Folders Watch for weekly folders to come home each Tuesday. Keep the contents of the envelope and then return the envelope on Wednesday. Fill out any forms that might be sent home and return them in the envelope.
Unique Kindergarteners learn that they are special and unique. They have opportunities to describe how they are alike and different from others. We will learn about how we are unique and special as we celebrate our similarities and differences.
Visitors We welcome and encourage family involvement at Walkertown Elementary. The school has a policy requiring ALL VISITORS (including familiar faces) to sign in at the office and wear a visitor sticker. It is important to remember that while this may seem inconvenient to frequent visitors, it is the goal and responsibility of the school to create a safe learning environment.
Writing Our writing program builds on what each child already knows. Writing begins with scribbles and proceeds to lines and circles, random strings of letters, words and spaces, and eventually sentences. Your children will be praised and encouraged for all attempts and accomplishments in writing. Providing a risk-free environment is paramount to your childs progress in writing. Please provide your child with writing tools, such as pencils, crayons, markers, and paper at home.
X is for eXperiences We will have many fun eXperiences this year such as crafts, cooking, experiments, making class books, and playing many learning games. They will be fun and eXciting!
You Remember, YOU are your childs first teacher! You can help your child feel successful this year by doing the following:
Read to your child. It is the single most important thing you can do. It encourages them to become good readers.
Discuss the school day with your child. Ask questions like, What did you learn today? , What did you work the hardest on?, What are you getting better at?. These questions cause the children to reflect on their learning, which in turn helps them remember new information. Ask your child about centers, music, PE, math, reading, art, computer, and media.
Help with homework. Once homework begins, it is very important that you work with your child on assignments each week.
Be positive! Talk positively about school! The way your child perceives your feelings about his/her school and teachers will have a direct impact on how he/she feels about them. Show an enthusiasm for learning. It is contagious!!
ZZZZs It is so important that you establish a bedtime routine that allows your child to get 10-12 hours of sleep each night. Children function more productively in class with a good nights sleep.