Week of November 20th

Hello Parents:

 

We want to thank everyone who came to Parent/Teacher conferences! Thank you to everyone who went on leaf hunts with their child as well! Be sure to check out the cool leaf creations and investigations the children participated in.

 

We have a fun filled parent & child activity on Tuesday, November 21st. All families (morning and afternoon) are invited to attend from 9:15-10:15 in the school cafeteria. We will have cool make it and take it activities for students to participate in. Remember there will be no regular class (morning or afternoon) on this day. All students must have an adult join them for this event. Siblings are welcomed!

 

Thanksgiving Break will be Wednesday, November 22nd- Friday, November 24th. Regular class will resume on Monday, November 27th Please remember if you are looking for something fun and educational for your child to over the break please go to our Ray Bookflix site. Here is the information:

What is BookFlix?
BookFlix supports early literacy development through animated storybooks. This digital platform provides an engaging library of paired fiction and nonfiction ebooks along with supporting literacy activities.

How do I Access BookFlix?
Your school has a unique username and password that can be used anywhere! To access your account, follow the steps below:

• STEP 1: Access BookFlix at: http://bookflix.scholastic.com
• STEP 2: Enter username and password. The username and password is the same and is case sensitive
o Username:eceray
o Password: eceray
• STEP 3: Happy Reading!

 

 

When we return from Thanksgiving break we will have a week full of Mo Willems fun. We are going to do an abbreviated author study on his book collection. We then transition into a month long Gingerbread Man study. We will explore the various versions of the story and end our study with a Gingerbread decorating party!

 

Reminders:
Please remember to assist your child in returning their library books into the blue bin labeled “Return Library Books Here” located near the exit door. Please do not re-shelf the books! Library books are due on Tuesdays, not Wednesdays. If you forget to turn in the book on Tuesday simply keep it another week until the next Tuesday.

 

Upcoming Events:
November 21st- Parent & Child Activity in school cafeteria from 9:15-10:15.
23rd-25th – Thanksgiving Holiday
December 22nd- Field Trip to Navy Pier
December 25th- January 5th- Winter Break

Please mark your calendars!

Have a great Thanksgiving Holiday,
Ms. Bethanie & Ms. Maggie

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Week of November 13th

Hello Parents:

We are excited to meet with all of the parents about their child’s progress.  Please see the following schedule for the conferences on Wednesday, November 15th!

See everyone then.  If you have not signed up we still have open spots please sign up on the sheet onto of the cubbies!  Thank You!

Ms. Bethanie & Ms. Maggie

Time         Child                 Parent
9:00            Lucy                     Cynthia
9:10              Aaron                  Pete & Nikki
9:20            Elodie                  Alayna & Adam
9:30             Ruby                   Zachary & Joy
9:40            George                 Duosheng
9:50            Natalie                Jesus & Bernice
10:00          Yaretzy               Telma
10:10            Baea                    Jo-Lin
10:20          Allen                    Minsun
10:30          Zoe                      Yuan
10:40          Julian                   Casper
10:50          Darwin                Angela
11:00         Shiloh                  Darius & Ivanna
11:10          Leah                     Kristy
11:20          Paige                    Peter
11:30          Judith                  Diane
12:40          Joshua                 Yanan
12:50          Sheela                  Yanan
1:00            Alfredo               Jorge
1:10            Eddie                      David & Casey
1:20           Mina
1:30            Kennedi               Kenyatta
1:40             Zavian                Ashley
2:00            Rose                    Holly
2:10             Simone               Sara
2:30             Amelia              Tom & Erin
3:20             Mika                  Flora
3:30            Marcus              John
3:40             Monica              Esther
3:50           Lawson                Brittany & Joseph

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Week of November 6th

Hello Parents:
We have been thoroughly enjoying investigating gourds, apples, and pumpkins! Be sure to check out our bulletin board to see all of the cool activities the children participated in. We want to thank all of the parents who accompanied us on the field trip! We really appreciate all the help! I also want to thank the parents who have kept our room stocked with play dough. If you would like to volunteer to make play dough for our class, please sign-up on our play dough calendar beside the sign- in sheet. The recipe that works best is behind the calendar, please take one!

 

November will be a very busy month for us. We will move onto to studying leaves. Please keep a look out in your child’s mailbox for a home “collection” activity in the next couple of weeks.
There will be a parent teacher conferences on November 15th. I have times from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. If you need to schedule a special time or day please let me know, I would be happy to schedule a time that works for you. Please be sure to sign up for the Parent Teacher conferences (on the clipboard beside the sign in sheet).

As the weather gets cooler please be sure to dress your child appropriately. In addition, please check your child’s extra clothes in their cubby to make sure they are weather appropriate for the changing weather.

Being that the days are shorter and the weather is cooler outside time will start to become limited. Chicago Public Schools has a great alternative site for parents and kids and to access. BookFlix is an online animated book library that is free for our school for the rest of the year. Here is the information:

What is BookFlix?
BookFlix supports early literacy development through animated storybooks. This digital platform provides an engaging library of paired fiction and nonfiction ebooks along with supporting literacy activities.

How do I Access BookFlix?
Your school has a unique username and password that can be used anywhere! To access your account, follow the steps below:

• STEP 1: Access BookFlix at: http://bookflix.scholastic.com
• STEP 2: Enter username and password. The username and password is the same and is case sensitive
o Username:eceray
o Password: eceray
• STEP 3: Happy Reading!

Upcoming Events:
November 21st- Parent & Child Activity in school cafeteria from 9:15-10:15.
23rd-25th – Thanksgiving Holiday
Please mark your calendars!

Thanks,
Ms. Bethanie & Ms. Maggie

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Week of October 30, 2017

Hello Parents:

We are excited to go on our very first field trip of the year! We will be departing Ray Tuesday, October 31st at 9:15 am and returning at noon (as close to noon as possible). Please do not send your child in a costume. The field trip is occurring in lieu of a traditional Halloween celebration. Please take the flyer next to the mailboxes if you are looking for more traditional Halloween activities. We have plenty of parent volunteers! Thank You! I want to remind everyone of our preschool field trip procedures. Everyone must bring their child into the classroom and sign your child in as you would normally do. Upon arrival back at the school everyone must come into the classroom and sign their child out. We will not dismiss children to parents who wait outside the building or outside the classroom. I have included the updated parent volunteer expectations:

 

FIELD TRIP VOLUNTEERS
Parent participation is essential in ensuring that our preschool children have appropriate field trip experiences. We highly appreciate parents who are able to assist us on our outings! We want to thank all of the parents who will be assisting us on our trips in advance!
On field trips we ask that parents supervise their child along with a small group of other children. Please remember that these experiences are meant for children and parents to experience together please refrain from cell phone use unless taking photos for great memories. We ask that you follow all safety rules and abide by the set schedule especially for departure times. We ask that you assist in buckling all students into and out of their seat belts. We ask that you buddy up with another adult to take children to the bathroom (if needed). We also ask that parents do not take part in any extra activities that are not included in the pre-planned field trip (i.e. going to any show/exhibit/performance that is an extra cost, or purchase treats or toys at souvenir shops). We have children with severe food allergies and it could be potentially dangerous to partake in treats/food made with unknown ingredients.

 

November will be a very busy month for us. We will move onto to studying leaves and our social focus will be “Being Thankful”. Please keep a look out in your child’s mailbox for a home “collection” activity in the next couple of weeks.

 

We would like to send a special heart felt thank you to Angela (Darwin’s mom) for providing a plethora of much needed World Language books!

 

Upcoming events:
Tuesday, October 31st- Field Trip to Eden’s Place
Friday, November 2nd- No School
Wednesday, November 15th- Parent & Teacher Conference- No regular class
Tuesday, November 21st- 2nd Parent & Child Activity 9:15-10:15 all students attend with an adult.

 

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Week of October 24th

Hello Parents:

 

We have been thoroughly enjoying investigating gourds, apples, and pumpkins! Be sure to check out our bulletin board in the next couple of weeks to see all of the cool activities the children participated in.

 

We are going to make our very own applesauce on Thursday, October 26th.  We are asking for parents to donate more apples.  If you are able to donate please bring in the apples by Wednesday, October 25th.  Thank you!

 

School Picture day is Tuesday, October 24th. Please be sure to bring in the form and money if you would like photos.

 

We are getting excited to go on our very first field trip on Tuesday, October 31st. Please remember we are not going to have lunch on the trip. We will have a light snack that I will provide.  Each child will receive a small pumpkin to bring home.  Please be sure to dress your child appropriately.   The entire field trip will occur outdoors.  If your child has a tendency to get car/vehicle sick please let me know so that we are prepared and can attempt to thwart off the motion sickness.

 

Upcoming Events:
Tuesday, October 24th- Picture Day
Tuesday, October 31st- Field Trip to Eden’s Place
November 3rd- No School– Professional Development for Staff
November 15th- Parent & Teacher Conferences  (more details coming)

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Week of October 21st

Hello Parents:

We want to thank all of our families that participated in our very first Parent and Child Activity of the year. We hope that you took the opportunity to focus on your child and their academic involvement!

Please be sure to turn in all paper work that is needed for the program and please remember to update your child’s immunization record when necessary. Thanks!

We are also ready to have parents volunteer in the classroom. If you would like to come in please sign up on the clipboard next to the sign in sheets! We are excited to have parents join us.

Next week will be going on our very first field trip to Eden’s Nature Center. We are still looking for volunteers to assist us (especially afternoon parents), please let me know if you can join us! Please be sure to turn in your child’s permission slips and money.

We will be learning in depth about apples this week. (We want to thank the parents who brought in apples for us, we really enjoyed them) We will be dissecting apples and learning new vocabulary. Be sure to ask your child to explain what apple “pips” are. We will also be learning the parts of the apple- focusing on the skin, flesh, core, pips, and stem.

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Week of October 9th

Hello Parents

We concluded our All About Me study and are moving into Fall and Autumn Exploration.  Thank you to Darwin’s family, Ruby’s family, Baea’s family for donating to our gourd/pumpkin collection.  We are still excepting more donations!

We have a couple of important events coming up.  Please be sure to mark your calendars!

Columbus Day- No school Monday, October 9, 2017

We will be having our first round of apple tasting Thursday, 12th.  We are asking for parents to donate apples for this activity.  We are in need of some sort of reddish apple, granny smiths, and yellow delicious apples.  If you are able to bring a few in that would be great!

Parent and Child Activity Expo

We are excited to have our first Parent and Child Activity Day of the 2017-2018 school year!  This will take place Friday, October 13th, in the school cafeteria from 9:15-10:15 am.  Please be sure to arrive at 9:15 so that you can complete all of the activities.

Parent and Child learning experiences are a crucial part of what makes Ray preschool so successful.  The activity day allows parents to join their child in exploring various developmentally appropriate activities during the (hands-on) interactive session.  Parents get to experience the games and activities that their child is being exposed to at school.  This is a great time for parents to get a better understanding of what Ray’s preschool expectations are for the students.  Parents will get new ideas to extend learning at home in addition to gauging what their child can do and what areas their child needs more experiences with.

The preschool staff will transform the cafeteria into a learning expo where the parent and child rotate through various activities.  Each child needs to have a grown up accompany them for the entire exploration hour.  All students (morning and afternoon) are invited to participate in the expo from 9:15- 10:15 am in the school cafeteria.  There will be no normal class session on this day.  If you are unable to attend the morning expo and would like to get a small sample of what occurred in the morning there will be a smaller version in the afternoon from 1-2 pm.  An adult must attend this session with their child as well.  If you need to experience the smaller version please let your teacher know.

Younger siblings are welcomed at this event.  If you are not able to make it please consider asking another special adult to join your child for this special event!

 

Kindergarten Lottery Information

As many of you know Chicago Public Schools uses a lottery system for parents to apply to schools outside of their “attendance or neighborhood school” (your “neighborhood” school is zoned by your address. To find out what your neighborhood school is visit: http://go.cps.edu/how-to-apply/elementary-school and scroll down to How it Works and click the search button….this should be up and working on October 10th).  If you would like for your child to attend Ray Elementary for kindergarten but you live outside the “neighborhood boundaries” you MUST apply through the lottery application process. 

 Also if you would like to apply for any other school “neighborhood school or a Magnet School (math/science, Montessori or Humanities), Magnet Cluster School (technology, world language, fine performing arts) or Selective Enrollment School (Academic Centers, Gifted Centers, or Classical) you MUST apply as well.

You can apply starting October 10th.  You should go to: http://cps.edu/AccessAndEnrollment/Pages/OAE.aspx  before October 10th to familiarize yourself with the process and learn more information about the various schools Chicago Public Schools offers.  Log on to the new application site go.cps.edu on October 10th to get started.   We are highly suggesting you start the process on October 10thChances to get your selected school are higher if you apply early.

 

***Important Dates for the application process:

 October 10, 2017 –Application Period Begins

 December 22, 2017 Application Period Ends

 April 2018- Notification Letters Released

 

****If you child will be returning for a 2nd year of preschool you DO NOT need to apply for the lottery you are guaranteed a preschool slot here next year. 

 

Field Trip to Eden’s Place– Tuesday, October 31st, 2017 9:15 to Noon

*****Forms and Money are due Friday, October 21st.

 

 

 

 

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Week of October 2, 2017

Hello Parents:

We are winding down our “All About Me” Topic of Study with a few more family focused activities. Please remember to assist your child in completing the family portrait homework sheet and turn in as soon as possible.

 

We will begin our study of Apples/Gourds/Pumpkins. We are collecting unique and cool looking gourds. Please feel free to add to our collection. We will end our study with a field trip to Eden’s Nature Center on Tuesday, October 31st. Please keep an eye out for the permission slip in your child’s mailbox. We are looking for parent volunteers to accompany us on the trip. All children both morning and afternoon children will attend from 9:15-noon. Please keep an eye out for the permission slip form in your child’s mailbox. If you would like to volunteer to assist us on our field trip please review the following expectations and responsibilities let me know you are interested:

 

FIELD TRIP VOLUNTEER RESPONSIBILITIES
Parent participation is essential in ensuring that our preschool children have appropriate field trip experiences. We highly appreciate parents who are able to assist us on our outings! We want to thank all of the parents who will be assisting us on our trips in advance!
On field trips we ask that parents supervise their child along with a small group of other children. We ask that you follow all safety rules and abide by the set schedule especially for meal and departure times. We ask that you assist in buckling all students into and out of their seat belts. We ask that you buddy up with another adult to take children to the bathroom (if needed). We also ask that parents do not take part in any extra activities that are not included in the pre-planned field trip (i.e. going to any show/exhibit/performance that is an extra cost, or purchase treats or toys at souvenir shops). We have children with food allergies and it could be potentially dangerous to partake in treats/food made with unknown ingredients.

 

We will be ready for volunteers to start in the classroom October 19th. Please sign up on the volunteer sheet if you would like to volunteer. Please look over the volunteer options below and indicate on the sign- up sheet which volunteer role you would like to do. Please be sure to indicate the days and the amount of time you are able to volunteer in our classroom.

 

Volunteering Opportunity Description
We will be ready to have parents come into the classroom and volunteer beginning October 19th. I will have a sign-up sheet available on Monday for you to sign up for a day and time that you would like to volunteer. We need volunteers to work with small groups of children, reading to children, and we can always use help with some of our house keeping duties. Please sign up for activities that you feel comfortable participating in. Please write R- behind your name if you would like to read to children, A- for doing activities with the children, or H- for housekeeping duties, C- for creating crafty things for the classroom, T- for technology assistance. I will give you details instructions so that you feel comfortable working with the children or completing the housekeeping duties. Thank you in advance for your assistance. Please let me know if you would like to volunteer on an ongoing basis.

 

Every Friday is FIT FRIDAY. Please dress your child in their athletic wear (gym shoes and clothes your child can move in)! Be sure to check out our FUN FIT FRIDAY display board outside our classroom.

 

As many of you know I am very passionate about providing challenging and interesting mathematical experiences for my students. I have attached a couple of links for you to view me in action. The video clips are from a program that I participated in as a part the Erickson Early Math Initiative. We continue to use the activities and have added many more activities to enhance my student’s math experiences. Enjoy the videos of children exploring mathematical concepts and being challenged to expand their knowledge!

Number Arrangements

Just Right for Me

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September 25, 2017

Dear Parents:

We want to thank everyone who donated or volunteered to read for the “Jane Averill Community Reading Day” on Friday, October 6, 2017. Leah’s mom (Kristy) reported that we have enough volunteers and donations so that all of the preschoolers will receive their very own copy of the book!

 

If you received a reminder to turn in missing paperwork, please turn in missing (required) items ASAP.

 

We would also like to thank Joy Lin (Baea’s mom) for making playdough for the classroom. There are many slots available if you would like to sign up. The sign-up calendar is next to the sign in sheets! We have slots available until Winter Break! Thanks

 

The children have worked diligently to learn school expectations this week. We will continue to review the limits and expectations throughout the week and the rest of the school year. We will finish up our study of “All About Me” this week. We are going to steer our focus to our families for the last week or two of the All About Me study. We will be using the books Five Creatures by Emily Jenkins, We All Sing with the Same Voice by Phillip Miller and Sheppard M. Greene, A World of Families by Trish Holland, and One Love by Cedella Marley to lead our focus. Please be sure to help your child complete the homework assignment of drawing their family and telling a fun or unique fact about your family. The homework will be placed in everyone’s mailbox on Wednesday, September 27th. Please return the completed assignment by Monday, October 2nd.

 

We will begin our lending library this week. Please be sure to reread the Lending Library Expectations. Books are to be returned each Tuesday and Check Out will occur on Wednesday. Please be sure to place the returned books in the Blue Return Book Bin…please do not place them back on the book shelf.

 

If your child has not received a “Me Bag” they will be receiving one this week or next week. Please be sure to send it back as soon as your can. We will be starting the Student of the Week this week as soon as everyone had completed their “Me Bags” Every child will have an opportunity to take the back pack home, complete the sheet, and bring in a favorite book and favorite toy to share with the class.

 

Once we have wrapped up the “All About Me” topic of study will be moving on to Fall/Autumn topic of study (The 1st or 2nd week of October). We will be collecting cool gourds and small pumpkins. If you see a cool gourd that you would like to donate to our collection we would highly appreciate it!

 

I am hoping that everyone is settled into preschool by mid-October. If everyone continues to transition into the classroom smoothly I will be asking for parent volunteers to begin helping out in the classroom or doing “housekeeping” duties for our room. If you are interested please see me.

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September 18, 2017

Hello Parents:

 

We would like to thank all of the parents who attended our Open House. If you were unable to attend all paper work that was distributed was placed in your child’s mailbox. Please be sure to check your child’s mailbox each day.

 

If you are missing any paperwork for your child’s file a letter will be placed in your child’s folder along with said paper work. Please return all items ASAP.

 

We are still in need of 1 ½” 3 ring binders for children’s portfolios, please turn it in ASAP.

 

We have successfully completed week two of school! The children are learning all about the materials in our classroom and making new friends. We will continue to study “All About Me” for the next few weeks. We have been discussing our 3 classroom limits: 1. Take care of each other. Be a good friend. 2. Take care of yourself. 3. Take care of our materials. Be sure to discuss these with your child.

 

We will learning all about our Work It Out Wheel this week. The Wheel is a tool that we use to help children figure out how to solve problems in the classroom. The six items on the Wheel are 1. Talk It Out and Listen. 2. Say Stop! 3. Find a new friend or toy. 4. Take a Balloon Breath. 5. Take a break and cool down. 6. Walk or Move away. Please review these with your child at the end of week and during the following weeks.

 

I have the play dough calendar out for parents to sign up to make play dough for our classroom. I have placed the recipe behind the calendar if you need one. Here is my favorite recipe:

Ingredients:
3 cup flour
1 1/2 cup salt
3 cup water
3-4 Tablespoon oil
6 teaspoons cream of tartar
Food coloring by drops till you reach your desired color. I use a lot. I like my play-dough to be bright!

Directions:
1. Combine all ingredients in a large pot and mix with electric mixer (or with a spoon). Cook over low heat, mixing until it sticks together and resembles mashed potatoes.
2. Allow to cool, divide dough into different balls to make different colors.
3. Optional add-ins are a few drops of essential oils to increase the sensual experience.
4. Store in covered container.

 

We also now have an easy way to donate online for the The Jane Averill Community Reading Day Friday, on October 6, 2017. Please view below and use the following link to make a donation if you’d like:

Donate online here: https://www.semcoop.com/jane-averill-community-reading-day Donate in person here: 57th Street Books 1301 E. 57th Street, 773-684-1300 Hours: Daily 10a-8p Tell them it is for the Jane Averill Community Reading Day We hope to provide the Pre-K or K students in these schools with a copy of the book read that day. Please share widely and spread the word! For more information: hydeparkcac@gmail.com or go to http://hydeparkcac.blogspot.com

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September 11, 2017

Hello parents:

We have completed week 1! The children are thoroughly enjoying exploring the classroom materials and making new friends. We have already generated a “Being a good friend list” and developed our “Loft Limits.” Please be sure and check out the list and review them with your child.

Please be sure to send in your name letters, kissing hand, and family photo. Our classroom family tree still had room for all of our wonderful family photos.

We still need binders for each student. If you have not brought in donations or are unable at this time, simply let me know and I will see that everyone has a binder. If you are planning to bring one in please do so ASAP. Thank you!

Our Donors Choose project was fully funded! Thank you to all you donated and passed on the link so that others could donate! Hopefully we will receive the items within the next week or two!

We also want to thank Natalie’s dad; Jesus for volunteering to reupholster all of dramatic play furniture! We really appreciate it!

Upcoming Events:

Open House:-Thursday, September 14, 2017 from 4:00-6:00 pm. The first hour will be in classrooms and the second hour will be in the auditorium for a State of the School address by administration. I highly encourage everyone to attend. This is a time when you learn about my personal philosophy, academic expectations, and our positive classroom community. The session will run much smoother if it is an adult only meeting, please arrange child care for at least the hour in the classroom.

Special Reading Day in Honor of Jane Averill. Jane was a well-loved preschool teacher here at Ray for many years. Ms. Jane passed away 2 years ago and her presence has been notably missed here in the preschool and throughout Ray. Jane was involved in several community organizations and a long time Hyde Parker. We are honored to be a part of the Special Reading Day in her honor. Jane was a wonderful story teller and found immense joy when the children became fully enthralled in her stories. Jane was also one of the most generous people I have ever met. Through the many years that knew I Jane she always had an extra “family” member she would take into her home. Jane always made room in her home to care for others- she showed compassion to all. The book that we will be reading embodies Jane’s selflessness and accepting nature. If you are able to volunteer to read or donate money (so that every preschool student can receive a copy of the book) please sign up at the website below or donate at 57th Street books.

HPKCAC Hyde Park/Kenwood Community Action Council
The Jane Averill Community Reading Day
Friday, October 6, 2017
Ariel – Carnegie – Harte – Kozminski – Murray – Ray – Reavis – Robinson – Shoesmith

Volunteer to read to Pre-K or K students at a neighborhood public school for 15-20 minutes and enjoy a tour of the school afterwards!
Sign up here: https://goo.gl/jbDnjZ (take a photo of this link with your phone!)

Donate here: 57th Street Books 1301 E. 57th Street, 773-684-1300 Hours: Daily 10a-8p Tell them it is for the Jane Averill Community Reading Day

We hope to provide the Pre-K or K students in these schools with a copy of the book read that day.
Please share widely and spread the word! For more information: hydeparkcac@gmail.com or go to http://hydeparkcac.blogspot.com

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Schools in Session 9/05/17!

Hello Ray Preschool Families,

I want to thank all of the families who attended the Preschool Meet N Greet! We were happy to see returning students and meet the new families.

If you were not able to attend the meeting all handouts will be available in your child’s mailbox. If you would like to review the tips for the first day of school please read my previous post. Ms. Maggie and I are excited about the upcoming school year!

Below I have included my DonorsChoose.org project that I discussed during the meet and greet.

Donors Choose

I want to make sure my students have the materials they need to succeed, so I’ve created a classroom project request through DonorsChoose.org, an award-winning charity.

Donations of any size will help my kids. Right now, any contribution you make to my project will be doubled by Sergey Brin Family Foundation. Your donation will brighten my students’ school year, and you’ll get heartfelt thank yous from my class and photos of your gift in action.

Here’s how to donate to my classroom request:

  1.  Go to   https://www.donorschoose.org/Ms.Bethanie .  Once my page has loaded you can donate at the top of the page.

To have your donation matched dollar for dollar , just make a contribution on that project page – donations will be doubled automatically, but only while funding lasts.

If you know anyone who is passionate about education, please pass this along. My students and I greatly appreciate your support.

Sincerely,

Ms. Bethanie

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