Ms. Marie's update 9-1-17

Ms. Marie’s September 2017 Newsletter

Dear Preschool Families:

We began our school year meeting new friends and learning about our classroom activities, routines and expectations.  In addition, our pre-academics focused on our names, the letters of the alphabet, the color yellow, counting correspondingly and more.  We practiced pre-writing with Mat Man. Some new friends joined our classes this week and were openly welcomed by your children.

We met Twiggle the Turtle and some of his friends from the PATHS social emotional curriculum. (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies). When Twiggle comes to class, it’s Twiggle time.  Ask your child about what he or she learns from Twiggle.  This week Twiggle and his friends helped students learn about their feelings and making friends.  Twiggle specifically talked about feeling Happy and Sad.

Every day, Twiggle picks one child (randomly selected) to be the Superstar of the day.  The Superstar will be the line leader, calendar helper and Twiggle helper.  In addition, the Superstar will be receiving compliments from their teacher and classmates.  We will be sending home a flyer in your child’s backpack telling you that your child was the Superstar for the day. The back of this form will include the complements your child received at school, and space for you to add a family compliment. Compliments are one of the ways the PATHS Curriculum promotes prosocial behavior.

In addition to the PATHS curriculum for developing the social emotional skills of self regulation and impulse control, your children are learning and practicing school-wide behavior expectations.  SPARK!’s framework for defining and promoting behavior expectations is:

S.T.A.R. which stands for...

S = Stay SAFE

T = Use TEAMWORK

AACT responsibly

RRESPECT self and others

When your child comes home with a Starpower sticker, ask them to tell you how they earned it.  This will help your child feel proud of their accomplishments and promote memory and language use skills.  

NOTE: Both classes are working to earn enough Starpower stickers to gain a school-wide reward of playing with parachutes in the gym later this week!  Please encourage your children to demonstrate star behavior so all the children can enjoy this fun activity.

September is now here and we are ready to delve into our first STEM unit of Transportation.  We will be exploring different forms of transportation in the air, water and on land.  We will be working on the letters: L, F, E, H, T, I, U, and C. We will also continue to work on our colors, shapes, and counting from 1-10.

STEM Profile for the Month: Responsible

I take care of doing my part.

I make good choices

I can be trusted to do what is right.

Attendance:

Thank you for your commitment toward ensuring that your children come to school everyday and arrive on time!  Regular attendance positively impacts on your child’s interactions with other children, as well as their progress in developing physical, social/emotional and academic skills.

Homework: 

Homework logs for reading were sent home in last Thursday’s homework folder.  Please help your child complete the reading log. Handwriting reinforcement pages will be included in your Thursday folder starting this week.  It is a fun and effective way to reinforce learning for your children.  Handwriting homework is related to the letters studied during the week. Children can earn small prizes at school for their homework efforts.

Reminders:

Please check your child’s Thursday folder that comes home in their backpack. Anything on the right side of the folder needs to be reviewed by you, signed if requested to do so, and returned the following Monday to SPARK! in your child’s backpack.  Please remember to sign any paperwork that requires a signature. To those of you who have already completed your paperwork, we send a big “Thank you!”  If you still have things to sign and/or return, please send them with your child next Tuesday. 

Important Dates:

·      Monday, September 4:  Labor Day – No School

·      Wednesday, September 6:  Regular class – Preschool does not participate in Late Start Day activities.  Classes will meet at the regularly scheduled time.

·      Sept 7, 6-8 pm:  Spark PTO meeting

·      Sept 7 - 8:  PBIS reward -- Parachutes in the Gym

·      Sept 11: SAC meetings 4:00 - 6:00pm

·      Sept 13, 5 pm - 7:30 pm PTO event at McDonalds in Firestone

·      Sept 14 - 6:30 pm - 7:45 PM -- Parenting class -- free for all parents –

o   Cheryl Hamilton, the Family Whisperer

·      Sept 16 -- MINER’S DAY -- City of Frederick -- 9 am - 12pm

·      9/22-10/6: Believe Fundraiser -- PTO!

·      Sept 26 - 27: Individual Picture Day -MJ Thomas

·      Sept 28 - 6:30 pm - 7:45 PM -- Parenting class -- free for all parents

o   Cheryl Hamilton, the Family Whisperer

Messages from the Office:

Community Resources:  We have information to connect families with local agencies regarding mental health, child nutrition, physical fitness, food bank, child find, medical and dental resources, in several locations: 

1) In a notebook in the front office,

2) In our parent flyer stand at the front entrance

3) On our school website at http://sdpk.svvsd.org/community-resources.

4) The black table at the front of the school also has activity packets for parents to take in English and Spanish (when possible)

Use of Interpreters for Families Speaking a language other than English:

Spark! Discovery Preschool takes reasonable steps to ensure families with limited English proficiency have meaningful access and an equal opportunity to participate in their child’s education, activities, and programs. Our district uses district-approved language translation services for translation of written communications, such as newsletters, Individual Education Plans, and so on.

Interpreters at Spark! Discovery Preschool will provide support for parents who may need this.  An interpreter is available daily in our school’s front office.  Additional interpreters are available for:

●      Ice Cream Social

●      Child Development parent classes (when requested)

●      Parenting classes (when requested)

●      Special Education meetings

●      Child-Find Meetings

●      Parent-Teacher Conferences 

Referral Processes:  If families would like to make a referral to a specialist, please discuss this with the School Special Education Facilitator. We host a Child Find satellite office at Spark! Discovery Preschool, to handle questions or concerns about child development, behavior, or mental health.  If you have questions about your child’s health, you should call our health clerk.  She will answer your questions or forward you to a SVVSD nurse.

Child Find at Spark! Discovery Preschool:  For children ages birth to five (who are not attending a district preschool already), developmental screenings and evaluations are provided by a District Child Find Assessment Team at Spark! Discovery Preschool (555 8th St., Frederick).  This Child Find Assessment Team may be comprised of School Psychologists, Speech and Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists, a School Nurse, and Early Childhood Special Education Teachers. Autism and Culturally/Linguistically Diverse Specialists consult as needed.

Other Plans for Academic or Behavioral Assistance:  A Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) is a systemic, continuous improvement framework in which data-based problem-solving and decision making is practiced across all levels of the educational system for supporting students. A Multi-Tiered System of Supports helps our school to organize resources through alignment of academic standards and behavioral expectations, implemented with fidelity and sustained over time, in order to accelerate the performance of every student to achieve. 

We are off to a great start and look forward to more learning and excitement as the year continues!

Please contact Ms. Marie if you have any questions or concerns (bloch_marie@svvsd.org.)

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