Welcome to Kindergarten
Teacher: Laura Knox
Welcome to Kindergarten!
Room Parent News
- Welcome back! Tuesday! Don't go to school tomorrow, there will be no classes.
- Friday is the Hamburger Farm field trip!
- Did you go shopping over spring break and need to make room in your closet? Kindergarten is still accepting gently used shoes. Not sure when that ends, I'm sure Mrs Knox will let us know in the *Tuesday* email. Because there is no school tomorrow.
Below are some of the procedures that we will use throughout the school year in our Kindergarten classroom.
Parent –Teacher Relationships: A good parent-teacher relationship is important for maximum school success. Throughout the year, I will communicate with you through notes, telephone calls and daily emails, and newsletters so that you know what is happening in our classroom. I am always available if you have any concerns or questions. You may call me at St. Michael’s 485-3418 x110. I will call you back as soon as I have a break. Or, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
School Hours: Kindergarten students attend school from 8:00am – 1:30pm. It is important that your child gets to school on time and that they are picked up promptly at 1:30 outside of our classroom. Kindergarteners must be walked to the classroom in the mornings, they cannot be dropped at the circle. If your child is going to Extended Care, please note this on our notepad inside the classroom door.
Uniforms: True Grits Uniforms (spring/summer and winter) are required. See Parent Handbook for specifics. Please be sure that accessories (socks, hair bows, shoelaces) are blue and white as well. Free Dress is granted occasionally throughout the year and will be announced in Chapel and in the Wednesday Letter. I will send a reminder for those coveted days as well!
Chapel: With the exception of the first week of school, our class will go to Chapel together each morning (except Fridays). You are welcome to attend as well. Parents are asked to sit behind the Eighth Graders and are encouraged to allow their students to enter Chapel with their class independently. (Please no high-fives on our way down the aisle! J) Chapel begins promptly at 8:10am and ends at approximately 8:30. (Chapel will be at 8:30am on the third Wednesday of the month to accommodate our preschoolers.) We will perform Chapel twice during the school year and you are highly encouraged to attend and watch your Kindergartener. Dates TBA.
Changes in pick-up: If your child is going home with someone they do not usually go home with, you must send a written note to me that morning or indicate it on the notepad inside our door. Please don’t expect your Kindergartener to relay this information. Please send it in a note instead. Additionally, the person picking up must be noted on their emergency form.
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 as well as arrangements for them to be cared for. It is very important to keep your child home if he/she is ill. Keeping your child home helps to make them more comfortable and prevents others in our school and classroom from becoming ill and missing instruction. If your child does have an illness, please let the school know.
Recess: We will go outside every day weather permitting. We have two recesses: one at 10:00 am and the second is after lunch until 12:15. There are always at least 3 teachers on yard duty.
P.E.: We will have P.E. with Mr. Buzzard every morning except Friday.
Music: We will have music two times a week with Ms. Shelton.
Spanish: Our Kindergarten class has Spanish Monday and Thursday afternoon right after lunch recess.
Library/Computers: We will have library & computers once a week. Your child will be allowed to check out one book each week. They will need to return it the following week in order to check out a new book. Please take time to read these books with your children. They are always so excited about the books that they have chosen. They will be reading many of these books to you by the end of the school year! As for computers, please send your child to school with a pair of headphones (labeled, and in a plastic baggie) for them (and only them) to use during computer class. This is the only supply your child will need from home this year.
Birthdays: Birthdays are special occasions for young children. In Kindergarten we LOVE to hear books read to us. On (or near) your child’s birthday, you are invited to read your child’s favorite book to us. The best times for this are directly after Chapel, OR at 1:15, before dismissal. We are happy to celebrate birthdays during first recess with a special treat to share with the class on that day. Please send an easy-to-serve, one-flavor-treat so that everyone gets the same treat and feelings are not hurt. If your child has a food allergy, please let me know (in addition to the office). If you would like to keep an alternative treat at school for these celebrations, we can arrange that. We will also celebrate summer birthdays in June. This way everyone will get a chance to celebrate their birthday at school.
Conferences: Conferences will be held in November. As this date approaches you will receive a scheduled time from the office for our conference.
Report Cards: You will receive your child’s report card 3 times during the school year.
Discipline: To establish good order and help the children learn self-control, the children will be guided to respect themselves and their companions through specific directions, positive reinforcements, suggested new activities and responsible actions. The main classroom goals are to have everyone treated kindly, fairly, and respectfully at all times.
Do Your Best
Rewards: Kindergarteners receive daily positive reinforcements, compliments. We use a “Clip Up/Clip Down” system in our classroom. Everyone begins the day with “Ready to Learn”. Their choices will indicate whether they “clip up” (great choice/example) or “clip down” (think about making a better/different choice). The children have opportunities to “clip back up” after a “clip down”, and vice versa. (I will show you this system at Back to School night for further clarification.) We will earn a class reward with our Warm Fuzzies. Once the children fill the Warm Fuzzy container with colored fuzzy pom-poms for good behavior, they will earn a celebration of their choice (popsicles, popcorn, movie, etc).
Book Orders: Every month I will send home book order forms for you and your child to look over. These clubs offer wonderful books at reduced prices - a great way to build your home library. For every book that you and your child order the class gets points to order free books to put into our classroom library. It is a win – win situation. Ordering is not mandatory.
Snack: Children may bring a snack to eat during their first recess (10:00 am). I ask that you send a snack that is healthy and manageable. Candy is not allowed at recess and not recommended at school.
School Lunch: We have a wonderful lunch program. Please see Wednesday Letters for more information regarding the lunch system.
Wednesday Letter/Folders: Each Wednesday your child will bring home their Wednesday Folder. Inside you will find important information from the office and from our classroom. You will also receive samples of your child’s work. This is a great way to begin a conversation with your child about his/her likes, dislikes, and comments about school. Wednesday Folders need to be signed by you and your student and returned the following morning, Thursday.
PE with Mr. Buzzard
In Physical Education, we have the opportunity to meet four times a week (30 minute classes). This year, Mr. Buzzard is going to present a different format. It's going to be all about games. Each week, a game will be presented to the class. They will learn the rules on Mondayand play the game Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Each day there will be variations of the game presented as well as discussions. These discussions will be centered around values within a game including: teamwork, sportsmanship, honesty, integrity, kindness, leadership, etc. The class is divided into four teams with new leaders each week. We focus on our routine which includes running outside and cardio work inside. And, of course, we have a lot of fun.
This year kindergarteners will learn about the basic components of a computer and adjoining systems. They’ll also use the web-based program Talking Fingers to hone their alphabet knowledge while simultaneously learning correct finger positioning. When they demonstrate proper finger positioning four class periods in a row, their nameplate baseball will be placed upon the Homerow Homers board. Since the Talking Fingers program is accessible via the internet students are encouraged to also work and complete levels at home, www.talkingfingers.com.
This year in science, Kindergarten students will be participating in a program called Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Launch. The goal of this program is to engage young minds in science, technology, engineering, and math so that they will build confidence, explore interests, and set themselves up for success in middle school, high school, and beyond. PLTW Launch taps into the students’ natural curiosity and enthusiasm to empower them to become problem solvers. Students use structured approaches, like the engineering design process, and employ critical thinking. They apply STEM knowledge, skills, and habits of mind, while learning that it is okay to take risks and make mistakes. As teachers and students learn and discover together, education becomes far more exciting.
The PLTW curriculum is broken into modules that explore engineering, biomedical sciences, and computer programming. During the first part of the year, Kindergarten students will be working through a module called “Structure and Function: Exploring Design.” In this module, students discover the design process and how engineers influence their lives. They explore structure and function by identifying products around them designed by engineers, asking questions engineers might ask as they design products, and determining the structure and function of items. Each student will build a beanstalk, construct a house that can withstand the huff and puff of the big bad wolf, and a engineer a painting tool that is specifically designed to accomplish a certain task. In the process, students apply newly acquired knowledge and skills as they utilize the design process to design, sketch, build, test, and reflect on all of their structures.
For more information on the PLTW program, please visit www.pltw.org, or contact the Lower School Science Specialist, Olivia Graffis.
Kindergarten children go to the library every Friday afternoon for a thematic storytime, an introduction to engaging books, library skills, and checking out books. Stories for storytime are selected to support the unit themes ofImagine It, social studies, and holidays.
Visit the St. Michael's Library Website at
Ms. Martha Rowland, Librarian
In Kindergarten this trimester we’ll study shapes, parts of the body, animals, and Cinco de Mayo. Our new songs will include “Cabeza,Hombros,Piernas,Pies” (head shoulders knees and toes), “La Granja”, (the farm) and “La Raspa” . Our puppet La Vaca will help us name farm and domestic animals. In May we’ll celebrate Cinco de Mayo by dancing La Raspa and naming our favorite Mexican foods in Spanish.
There have been some math games recommend for all students on the EnVision math website. These games are completely optional! This is a helpful tool if you are looking for ways to challenge your child or reinforce essential math skills.
EnVision Math: www.pearsonsuccessnet.com (log in with student number)
Class Parties, Projects & Volunteers
Class Parties and Activities
- Mother Goose Blues - November 10
- Christmas Party - December 15
- Valentines Party - February 14
- End of the Year Party - June 8
- Kindergarten Chapels - December 8 and May 18
- Fall Carnival - Oct 28
Lunch Room Duty
- 10/3–7 - Lunchroom Duty
- 1/23–27 - Lunchroom Duty
- 4/3–7 - Lunchroom Duty
- 6/5–7 - Lunchroom Duty
Children's Progress Academic Assessment
Children's Progress is computer-delivered formative assessments, with tailored reports and recommended activities are the ULTIMATE TEACHING TOOL – simplifying the process of learning advancement for every one of the students.
Children's Progress was founded with the mission of bringing leading technology and assessment tools to your classrooms. Our company grew out of decades of academic research at Columbia University and our patented software was developed in collaboration with MIT.
Today, Children's Progress Academic Assessment products are used by public and independent schools in 39 states.
The Children's Progress Academic Assessment (CPAA) is an early childhood assessment system that helps teachers focus classroom instruction to achieve the greatest learning gains for each child. The software is linked to immediately generated reports and helps teachers and administrators gain essential insights about each child's understanding of Language Arts and Mathematics concepts.
For students in Pre-K through Grade 2, the reports help teachers individualize instruction to maximize learning for each child. In designing the Independent School version of the assessments, CPAA consulted with the Educational Records Bureau (ERB) to establish Language Arts and Mathematics benchmarks which ensure that students reach high levels of achievement. CPAA worked closely with independent school teachers and administrators to design appropriate and targeted questions. Each item has been rigorously evaluated through an analysis of student responses and performance data.
Starfall.com (Free Service for Phonics Motivation)
Starfall.com opened in September of 2002 as a free public service to motivate children to read with phonics. Our systematic phonics approach, in conjunction with phonemic awareness practice is perfect for preschool, kindergarten, first grade, second grade, special education, homeschool, and English language development (ELD, ELL, ESL). Starfall is an educational alternative to other entertainment choices for children.
End - please do not remove this line
End - please do not remove this line
Mrs. Laura Knox
485-3418 x 110
Mr. Steve Buzzard
Ms. Kami Davis
Mrs. Jessica Drissi
Ms. Olivia Graffis
Mr. Rick Hauch