Mrs. Carrie Wallace
February is the time of year when we celebrate friendship in an elementary school as part of the adult celebration of Valentine’s Day. We have reinstituted a character trait of the month. These traits are being introduced and reinforced in our monthly College Community Assemblies as well as practiced throughout the month in classrooms and across the school. The character trait for February is Kindness. Please talk with your child about what it looks like and sounds like when people are being kind to each other. Celebrate random acts of kindness that your child and other family members do for each other with an extra hug or high five. We are finding that students are forgetting what it feels like to say a kind word when someone looks sad or just because we are glad to have a friend. We will be working on celebrating those random acts of kindness as well.
February is when we pass the halfway point of the school year and celebrate the 100th Day of school. This is an important day because so many of our youngest students are just learning to count to 100 and understand what that means in terms of place value (10 groups of 10). The 100th Day of school will be Tuesday, Feb. 7 for grades 1-4 and Friday, Feb. 10 for K students (as long as we don’t have any more snow days). Please help your child of any age count out 100 of something small and then 100 of something big. It is always amazing to see how much space 100 pennies takes up compared to 100 cotton balls or 100 children!
Valentine’s Day is usually right around the 100th Day of school. This is a crazy time of year in an elementary school as our students exchange silly and kind words to each other. Please remember that we do not have parties with food or candy to celebrate this day. This includes cards that come with any kind of food item or candy. So please choose your VALENTINE’S CARDS carefully - NO CANDY. We don’t want to disappoint you child if they bring in this type of card.
February is also the time of year in the school calendar when grades three and four start focusing more on the up coming MCAS tests. The testing window is April 3 - May 26 for both the English Language Arts and Math. In March I will send out this schedule to parents of the specific days we will be testing. We will try to get all of the testing done as quickly as possible so that it disrupts classroom learning as little as possible. As I talked about in my January article, we are focusing on getting students used to writing directly from their heads into the computer. Most of these writing assignments are based on books or articles that they have read in preparation for life and the state testing. I will be sending home more information about the test and the testing schedule as we get closer. We will also be presenting a parent night to help you understand what your child will be experiencing during the testing process.
I hope you have a great month filled with random acts of kindness!