Thursday, September 08, 2016
Hello Garden Community Parents and Guardians,
We had a great week of orientation and first week of school! The children are excited to reunite with old friends and make new ones. Today we had a special surprise! Miss Ana came to visit at lunch time J The returning children were so happy to see her and the new children got to meet her for the first time.
We would like to let you know some things about your child’s community…
CDM is Peanut/Nut Free: Because we have children in our school with severe peanut allergies, we don’t serve any food with peanuts/nuts or foods labeled with “may contain nuts” or “manufactured in a facility that also processes peanuts and other tree nuts.” Please read labels and be very careful about what you send to school. Also, when the children enter the classroom, we ask them to wash their hands. (We also ask some of them to use the bathroom first.) We want to do everything we can to keep all of our children safe.
Daily Schedule: We will begin our day with a short line time so we can greet each other, sing a good morning song, talk about anything that will be out of the ordinary schedule for the day, and do Show & Tell. Then we will have work time. During work time, the children help themselves to a snack. At 10:15 a child rings the bell and we clean up and use the bathroom. We have playground from 10:30 to 11:00 and line time is from 11:00 to 11:30 followed by a short work time before lunch. During line time we talk about the date and the weather, sing songs, do music and movement, learn Spanish and Sign Language, read a book, have a group lesson, etc. Lunch is from 12:00 to 12:45. At 12:45 the nappers go to the Evergreen Community. The rest of the children stay in the Garden Community for another work time until 3:00. On days when the weather is nice, we go on the playground from 2:30 to 3:00. Then the after school care program begins.
Peaceful Classroom: In an effort to have a peaceful classroom, we’re going to keep our classroom door closed, that way we won’t have distractions from the entry way. If you arrive after 8:00, please bring your child into the classroom quietly. If you need to talk to a teacher, one of us can meet with you outside the door. If your child would like to show you a work or something else in the room that they’re excited about, you’re welcome to come in. Please just remember your quiet inside voice J
You are invited to come in and read one of your child’s favorite books to the class. This can be done between 11:00-12:00 or between 2:00-3:00. We will keep it a surprise for your child. That is the “mystery” part. However, it doesn’t have to be a mystery if you think your child would rather know ahead of time that you’ll be coming.
Units of Study: In September, we will learn about starting school, making friends, fruits and vegetables, and the world. In October, we will learn about North America; November–South America; December–holidays around the world; January–Antarctica; February–Asia; March–Europe; April–Africa; and May–Australia. In years past, parents have come in and talked to us about other countries and cultures or about their professions. I look forward to parent involvement again this year!
Folders for the Children’s Papers: Each child has a folder with a picture of a school on one side for work that needs to be finished at school and a picture of a house on the other side for work to go home. Please help your child check their folders for “work to go home” each day when you pick them up. Please leave the “work to be finished at school” in the folder. The children usually put the papers in the folders themselves, so you might need to check them to make sure they’re finished. Please don’t be discouraged if your child rarely has work to take home. That’s OK! There are many valuable activities that your child is doing that do not require them to take anything home.
Pegs for Sweatshirts: We have pegs on the closet door in our classroom so the children can hang their sweatshirts up if they get too warm with them on. If your child’s sweatshirt is not in their cubby at the end of the day, it’s probably on a peg.
Show and Tell
Show and tell is an excellent opportunity for your child to practice speaking in front of a group while sharing something he/she feels is special. It’s also a good opportunity to learn to listen when someone else is talking. Please encourage your child to bring in something from nature, something from another country or a vacation, pictures of family, etc. Some examples of things that children have brought in are leaves, antlers, medals or trophies, rocks, shells, pine cones, flowers, etc. Please limit Show & Tell to once a week. And no toys please! Thank you!
Birthdays: As your child’s birthday nears, we will give you a long piece of paper to be used as a time line. If you would like to participate in this, please put a favorite picture of your child from each year on the time line along with descriptions. We will celebrate each child’s birthday by singing happy birthday to them in English, Spanish, and Sign Language, and giving them one, big clap for each year. The child will choose a friend to hold the sun while he/she walks around the blue ellipse, holding the globe, once for each year. The birthday child gets to ring the bell, be the weather forecaster and feed our pet fish. The child may bring a commercially prepared snack for the children in the Garden Community (Peanut and Nut Free Please). Some parents like to come in for the birthday celebration. We do it during line time. You may also choose to stay for lunch. If your child has a summer birthday, we’ll celebrate their half birthday.
Observation Room: We encourage you to observe before conferences. It’s a fun way to get a glimpse of what your child is doing in the classroom without them knowing that you’re there. If you would like to observe, just let Angie or Heidi know and they can turn off the lights in the foyer and make sure our door is closed.
Supplies Needed: Thank you for checking our bulletin board outside the classroom for supplies we may need. These items are used in the Practical Life and Art areas.
Notes: Please check our bulletin board outside our door each day for notes. This is also where the conference sign-up sheets will be. If you have a note for the teachers, please put it on the bulletin board right inside the classroom.
We love parent volunteers!! We would very much appreciate any help with the following:
*Laundry – take home our used rags, towels and polishing cloths and wash them
*Cutting paper for metal insets, parts of books, and I Spy
*Make play dough and “gooey gunk”
*Dye noodles for the necklace work
*Sharpen pencils and make copies
Saying Good-bye: The first few weeks of school may be difficult for your child to separate from you, especially if CDM is a new environment. Please understand that this is normal for some children and long good-byes at the classroom door tend to add to their anxiety. It is best to say goodbye, give a hug and a kiss and then let one of the teachers welcome your child into the classroom. Children usually stop crying before the parent even gets to their car.
Parent-Teacher Contact: If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to talk to Ana, Agnes or me about them. I am available from 7:45-8:00, 10:30-11:00 (Tuesday through Friday) and 2:30 to 3:00. You can also email me at email@example.com.
Thank you for sharing your beautiful children with us!
Char, Ana and Agnes