Week of October 22, 2018

Hello Parents:

We have thoroughly enjoyed exploring apples! We are going to begin our investigation of gourds and pumpkins this week and next week. 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 getting excited to go on our very first field trip on Thursday, November 1st. All money and slips need to be turned in by Friday, October 26th. If you have not completed the online volunteer process or turned in your photo ID to the main office you will not be able to volunteer on this trip. Please remember we are not going to have lunch on the trip. We will have a light snack that I will provide.

We are excited to conduct this year’s very first Parent & Child Activity on Tuesday, November 20th from 9:15 to 10:15 in the school cafeteria. This is a time where parents can experience some of the learning activities students participate in at school. Parents must accompany children during this hour. There will be no regular class on November 20th. I will conduct parent-teacher conferences for the returning children from 10:30-12:00 on this day as well. There is not enough time to see 40 parents on the designated day (November 14th). Please be sure to sign up on the correct sheet (located by the sign-In sheets).

Upcoming Events:

Friday, October 26th – Field Trip Money and Slips are due.
Thursday, November 1st- Field Trip to Eden’s Place
Friday, November 2nd- No School- Professional Development for Staff
Wednesday, November 14th- Parent & Teacher Conference (for newly enrolled students this school year)
Tuesday, November 20th- Parent and Child Activity from 9:15-10:15 in school cafeteria
Tuesday, November 20th- Parent & Teacher Conferences 10:30-12:00 (for the returning children who were enrolled last year.
November 21-23rd- NO SCHOOL Thanksgiving Break

Have a great week!

Ms. Bethanie & Ms. Maggie

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Week of October 15th

Hello Parents:

We want to thank everyone who brought in apples and gourds! The children are enjoying tasting the many varieties of apples! We are still accepting cool gourds and pumpkins!

Our students are thoroughly enjoying creating masterpieces in the writing center! We are in need of stickers! We would appreciate any sticker donations!
We also want to thank Nikki and Pete (Aaron’s parents) for helping secure our field trip details! They were crucial in making sure I was able to successfully communicate with Eden’s Place Nature Center staff. They took 2 separate trips to the site! Be sure to thank them for assistance!

Please be sure to turn in all paper work that is needed for the program. I have deadlines that I must abide by and the deadlines are approaching quickly. Thank You!
We only have a few parents who have signed up to volunteer on the field trip. We need many more to assist us. This is a field trip where we walk around outdoors to various areas. We would like to ensure that the children are able to move around with the appropriate supervision.

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!

Being that the weather will continue to get colder please be sure to dress your child appropriately! Layers are always a good choice. We will go outdoors most of the time. If the weather is severely cold (via Ray Handbook: The CPS cutoff temperature (with wind-chill) is 30 degrees, however principals have discretion for temperatures between 15-30 degrees Fahrenheit. We believe that students benefit from outdoor play, and will monitor the weather to ensure temperatures, precipitation, and grounds are safe. If not safe, students will have indoor gross motor activities). We have been practicing putting on all outer wear. Please also reinforce this independence at home as well. We are happy to assist, but it takes a really long time at assist 20 children in getting dressed! We practice the “preschool flip” and have the children attempt to zip/button/snap as well.

We are also asking that parents please be considerate and patient when entering the double doors. Parents and children are expected to wait outside (unless it is extremely cold or raining). Please do not ask or expect other Ray staff to allow you in the building before time. Preschool staff will always open the doors for our families- no one else.

Upcoming Events:

• Field Trip has been rescheduled for THURSDAY, November 1st
• No School- Friday, November 2nd- Teacher Professional Development
• Parent-Teacher Conferences- Wednesday, November 14th
• Parent & Child Activity Expo- November 20th- 9:15-10:15

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Week of October 9th

  1. Indigenous People Day- No School Monday, October 8, 2018

We concluded our All About Me study and are moving fully into Autumn Exploration.

We will be having our first round of apple tasting Thursday, 11th. 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!

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

CORRECTION
Field Trip has been rescheduled for THURSDAY, November 1, 2018.

 

Parent and Child Activity Expo

We are excited to have our first Parent and Child Activity Day of the 2018-2019 school year! This will take place Tuesday, November 20th, 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/adult and child rotate through various activities. Each child needs to have an adult 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 1:15-1:45 pm. An adult must attend this session with their child as well. If you need to experience the smaller version please let us 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). 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.

The application process has begun! You should go https://go.cps.edu/ to learn all about the process. To begin the process you must create an account. Please go to: https://cps.schoolmint.net/signup in order to create an account and start the process. Log on to the new application site go.cps.edu to get started. We are highly suggesting you start the process now. Chances to get your selected school are higher if you apply early.

***Important Dates for the application process:

October 2018–Application Period Begins

December 2018- Application Period Ends

April 2019- Notification Letters Released

 

Upcoming Events:

• Jane Averill Reading Day– Friday, October 12th- This is a day that the community schools read a special book in memorial to Ms. Jane who was a beloved preschool teacher here at Ray. Ms. Jane passed away a few years ago and she was an awesome story teller and she exposed her students to a plethora of books and I am sure she instilled the love of books in her students.
• Parent & Child Activity Expo- November 20th from 9:15-10:15
• No School- Friday, November 2nd- Teacher Professional Development
• Parent-Teacher Conferences- Wednesday, November 14th

 

Have A Great Week,

Ms. Bethanie & Ms. Maggie

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Week of October 1st

Hello Parents:

Please be sure to check your child’s mailbox daily. We need every parent to complete the ASQ:SE Questionnaire and return it no later than Friday, October 5th. Thank you!
We are winding down our “All About Me” Topic of Study with a few more family and “me” 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 Friday, November 2nd. Please disregard the typo (it will be on Friday, November 2nd, I incorrectly typed the 1st) on 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. 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 require 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 November 5th. 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.

Upcoming Events:

ASQ: SE Questionnaires Due-October 5th

Indigenous People Day– October 8th No School

School Photo Day– Tuesday, October 9th

Jane Averill Reading Day– Friday, October 12th- This is a day that the community schools read a special book in memorial to Ms. Jane who was a beloved preschool teacher here at Ray. Ms. Jane passed away a few years ago and she was an awesome story teller and she exposed her students to a plethora of books and I am sure she instilled the love of books in her students.

Eden’s Place Nature Center– Friday, November 2nd- All children (both morning and afternoon) attend from 9:00- noon. There will be no regular schedule class sessions on this day.

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 a few years ago. We continue to use the activities and I have added many more activities to enhance my student’s math experiences. Enjoy the videos of children exploring their math limits!

Number Arrangements

Just Right for Me

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Week of September 24th

Dear Parents:

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

We would also like to thank Tom & Erin for making play dough 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. The children completed their Age Collages and had in depth discussions and participated in short skits with Ms. Maggie focusing on our “Work It Out Wheel”. We also enjoyed popcorn from our garden and mint/cucumber water from our garden harvest! The majority of the students loved the popcorn.

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 26th. Please return the completed assignment by Monday, October 1st.

We will begin our lending library this week. Please be sure to read the Lending Library Expectations (in your child’s mailbox). 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.

In addition to our lending library. The Office Of Early Childhood Education has also purchased a subscriptions for our families to use an online “book on video” and “read aloud’s” program through Scholastic. Please utilize this free tool! We use it in the classroom as well!

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!

 

If your child has not received a “Me Bag” they will be receiving one in the next few weeks. Please be sure to send it back as soon as your can. We will be starting the Student of the 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.

 

We are also in the process of booking our very 1st field trip. Everyone should have received the volunteer and field trip chaperone information sheet. I will post it below in case you have misplaced it. Please follow these procedures if you would like to volunteer and/or chaperone any of this year’s field trip.

 

Volunteer Process for Classroom Visitors and Field Trip Chaperones

As many of our students participate in field trips, it is imperative chaperones have completed the volunteer process. For classroom volunteers and field trip chaperones adults simply need to complete the short online application process at cpsvolunteers.org.

Volunteers must also have a picture ID on file for the school.

If you are interesting in volunteering in the classroom or chaperoning any field trip you MUST complete online application and provide a photo ID. Please complete both of these requirements by Friday, September 28th so that we can ensure that we have enough volunteers for our upcoming field trip.

Thank You

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Week Of September 17th

Hello Parents:

We would like to thank all of the parents who attended our Open House.  If you were unable to attend but would like the Open House information pack please let me know.  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.

 

Please be sure to turn in your family photo and your Name Letter so that the children can share them with their classmates.

 

We are in need of five 1 ½” 3 ring binders for children’s portfolios if you are willing to donate 1 or 2 we would highly appreciate it.

 

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.

 

I will begin sending home “All About Me Bags” next week.  I will send the bags home to five children each week.  Please keep an eye out in your child’s mailbox for their bag.  Please follow the instructions and turn the bag in as soon as you are done.

 

We are thoroughly enjoying all of our food that we are harvesting from our garden!  We had potato, basil, and bok choy saute this past Fit Friday.  The morning children went on a potato scavenger hunt and the afternoon children harvested our bok choy and basil.  Next week we will plant our fall crops and clean out some of beds.  For this upcoming Fit Friday we are planning on enjoying popcorn (from our garden) and mint (from our garden) infused water.

 

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 Playdough Calendar out for parents to sign up to make playdough 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! I also add the food coloring to the water to for even distribution.

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.

 

Have a great week!

 

Ms. Bethanie & Ms. Maggie

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Week Of September 10th

Hello Parents:

 

We have successfully completed week one!  The children have been exploring the various areas in the classroom.  We discussed our Loft Limits and added photos to assist the children in remembering what the expectations are.  We also discussed how our “Sound Check” pyramid and practiced what type of voices we should use in the hallways, classroom, and outdoors.  The morning class went out to explore the garden and picked tomatoes for our healthy snack!  Due to the rainy weather the afternoon children did not have the opportunity to get out to garden.  The afternoon class will be introduced the garden this week.  Each “Fit Friday” the children engage in extended physical time either on the playground, or in our tricycle/gross motor room, participate in yoga, and have a healthy snack.

 

This week we will continue to explore the classroom and building our classroom community.  We will discuss our class limits:  1.  Take of care of yourself   2. Take care of others.  3.  Take care of our materials.  We will read stories and discuss what those 3 limits mean in our classroom.  We will also introduce our “Bugs and Wishes” conflict resolution tool.  The children will also participate in friendship paintings and our Age Graph.

 

Please return all paper work ASAP.  It is very important to have all information on file.

 

We are going to use Class Dojo this school year.  Class Dojo is a behavior management tool and a communication tool.  Please know that in pre-k we are only using this as way to communicate with parents.  This is a secure way to share pictures and information quickly.  I will give you a paper copy with all the information on how to join.

 

Please bring a family photo for our family tree!

 

Upcoming Events:

  Thursday, September 13th – Open House 4:30-5:30 p.m. During this time, you are free to visit your child(ren)’s classroom(s) Please try to find child care for this event.  I will discuss my personal philosophy, our curriculum, and the classroom expectations.

  Warrior Wednesday – Every Wednesday students should wear Ray gear or green to show their Warrior pride!

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Welcome Letter 2018

August 2018

 

Dear Parents:

 

We just wanted to get a quick note out to you before school starts. You will be receiving a Handbook from the teachers at Ray as well as one from Chicago Public Schools Office of Early Childhood about the program overall. Please read both carefully as there is important information and guidelines in them.

 

The half-day program has a unique way that students begin. The children that are returning for their second year of  Pre-Kindergarten will start school on Tuesday, September 4th, 2018 at the regular scheduled time and stay for the entire 2 ½ hour session. The new children will be phased into the classroom for 30 minute periods on September 4th and 5th. Your child’s time slot is written at the bottom of this page. As your child is being introduced to the classroom, we ask that parents review other important information at the table set up outside the cafeteria. We will work with you on any separation issues you or your child may have. We have attached some suggestions for the first day of school that you may find useful.

 

Please enter and leave the building through the preschool designated doors (The double glass doors at the front of the building closest to 57th & Kimbark). Pre-K classrooms are in the new addition. You must bring your child to the classroom and sign them in and out each day. The morning session is from 8:45 a.m. to 11:20 a.m. The afternoon session is from 1:10 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. Please do not be late!! Children arriving late miss out on important activities and disturb the rest of the class. If your child is late or absent, we will need a written note on the day your child returns to school.

 

Note: You may not park in the teacher’s parking lot. Kimbark Avenue is closed between 8:30 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. and again at 3:30 p.m. to allow for bused children to get on and off the buses safely. We have a “dash board signage” procedure for pre-k families and will explain it the first day of school. Please be prepared to find street parking until we have given you the dash board sign and explained the parking procedure.

 

Classroom Information
The classroom number is 405.
The classroom phone number is 773-535-6702.
Ms. Bethanie’s e-mail address is bsmith4@cps.edu (please put Ray School in the subject line when e-mailing). E-mail is the most efficient manner in which to reach me. I do not always answer the classroom phone while engaged in activities with the children. I do however, have the ability to set a special alert for e-mails that are school related and will check them as soon as possible.

 

Note: Please make sure that we always have your current address and phone number(s) so that we can reach you when necessary.

 

What you will need the first day of school:

 

NO Backpacks- it gets very crowded when winter outerwear is added daily!
***We do not have enough cubby space for children to bring backpacks. The only exception is for children who are going onto another care facility directly after class (i.e., Little People’s Learning Center). So please do not bring backpacks to school.

 

1) Change of clothing for your child, including pants/shorts, underwear, shirt, socks, shoes, and with your child’s name on all items. Please put sunscreen on your child before they come to school. We will spend a lot of time outdoors when the weather permits.

 

2) Photo of your family.

 

**Lastly, we are a very creative group and often need extra cleaning supplies for our daily activities. We have a short “wish list” for parents who would like to donate the following (due to limited storage space we ask that the supplies be brought in a staggered fashion, on an as needs basis).

 

3) Families whose last name begins with A-L, please bring the following:

2 box of facial tissue
1 Bottle of Lysol (disinfecting spray)
3 containers of disinfecting wipes
2 roll of paper towels (Select-A-Size is preferred)
1 box gallon-sized zip-lock bags,
1 box quart-sized zip-lock bags
2 reams of white computer paper
1 ream of colored computer paper
1 container of Hand wipes (Wet ones, baby wipes)
4 bottles of hand soap
1 set of extra clothes
1 family photo

**I will ask for more supplies from the remaining families as needed throughout the year.

Thanks,

Ms. Bethanie and Ms. Maggie

Phase-In Schedule

Morning Class

Child  &  Phase-In Time:
Margaret (Maggie) C. 9:15-9:45
Christopher H. 9:15-9:45
A’layah H. 9:15-9:45
Spencer G. 9:15-9:45
Quinten M. 10:00-10:30
Soraiya T. 10:00-10:30
Andrei W. 10:00-10:30
Matthew J. 10:00-10:30

Afternoon Class

Child & Phase-In Time
Milan E. 1:15-1:45
Kingston T. 1:15-1:45
Nicholas H. 1:15-1:45
Nazir Y. 1:15-1:45
Ryhs R. 1:15-1:45
Elijah C. 1:15-1:45
Chad P. 2:00-2:30
Xaiver B. 2:00-2:30
Felicity L. 2:00-2:30
Surah M. 2:00-2:30
Cameron S. 2:00-2:30
Jan Ha S. 2:00-2:30

***If your child is having a successful phase in, there is the option of attending the 2nd day until the end of the class session. We can decide as the phase-in process takes place.

 

 

 The First Day of School

The first day of school can be a wonderful or terrifying event for both parents and children. We can do things to help us through this process.

 Talk to your child about if there is a special item (small enough to fit into their cubby) he or she would like to bring to school for comfort. The object will be left in the cubby for your child to go to and snuggle with (if necessary).
 Please bring a family photo to post in your child’s cubby so that they can look at it throughout the day (if necessary).
 Visit the playground at school so your child is familiar with the equipment and feels competent using it.
 Do some pretend play with your child about how you will go to school and how you will say goodbye. Imagine waking up, having breakfast, getting in the car, walking in the door, kissing/hugging goodbye.
 Agree on a goodbye ritual: how many kisses, hugs, etc.
 Make sure your child is clear about who will pick him up and when.
 Find out something about the schedule so you can talk it over with your child.
 Give a special note, picture, or poem for your child to keep in their cubby. We will also encourage your child to write a letter or draw a picture for you to make them feel better (if necessary).
 Make sure you awaken early enough to have a relaxing morning, with time to dress and eat a good breakfast/lunch.

Do not hang around at the door or peering through windows after you have said goodbye. Once your child sees that you are reluctant to leave, it is harder for them to feel safe and it is more difficult for the teachers to engage the child in classroom activities. BRING TISSUES! This may be harder for you than your child.

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Meet and Greet 2018

August 2018

 

Dear Parents,

We just wanted to get a quick note out to you before school starts. We are so excited to meet you and your child!

 

New students are required to attend a Meet and Greet to get to know their school and teachers (Returning students are welcomed to stop by for a brief visit as well, but not required to attend).

 

Parents and students are required to attend this session on August 31st from 2:45–3:30 p.m. in the Ray School annex (if you cannot attend please make arrangements to send your child with a trusted adult. It is crucial that young children meet their teachers and visit the classroom before school starts). Students will tour the classrooms and meet teachers.

 

During this visit, parents must complete required paperwork in order for the student to start school on September 4th. If the required paperwork is not complete students will not be allowed to start school on September 4th. Teachers will be available to assist with paperwork and general questions during the meet and greet social.

 

Please enter the building through the main entrance.

You will also receive your parking tag so that you can park in the correct spot during the first day of school.

 

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact:
Ms. Bethanie: bsmith4@cps.edu

 

Thanks and we look forward to meeting you,

 

Ms. Bethanie & Ms. Maggie

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General Update

Hello Parents and Families of 405-

A few things to update and some dates to keep up with.  The year will wrap up faster than we realize!  The field trip to the Nature Museum was a great time.  The adult volunteers were great, the children were engaged and excited… SUCCESS!  And, we were on time this time 😉  Thank you again to all of those who could make the time to come.

Ms. Bethanie has continued to check in and wants to be sure our garden looks lovely through this heat.  The garden has been watered well during outside playtime.  We’ve been advised by other Garden Committee members to start harvesting our spinach, so we will have some tastings during school!!  How fun!  We will have two more Fit Fridays.

Thank you again for all the support from home with communications through email, snacks, everything.  Please continue to reach out if you have any questions.

Specific things to note:

  • Let us know if you have questions about pre-k for next year.  We understand there were some erroneous letters sent out and that should be fixed soon.  Please know that if your child was in pre-k this year and is eligible for pre-k next year, you have the same spot at Ray.  You should have been given a preference sheet for full-day versus half-day and we have noted all of those preferences.  We are still awaiting information and paperwork to arrive regarding enrolling new students for next year.
  • Wrapping up the year in a pre-k room looks different than other grades.  The teachers and staff here do a wonderful job of meticulously cleaning and organizing the room to prepare for next year and this will happen incrementally throughout the last two weeks.  Thank you to those who have signed up to help.  We still need more helpers, so please sign up if you can (sign-up sheet is by the entry door).
  • We will be visiting the kindergarten classrooms as prep for next year for some of our children, date TBD.
  • We will have a Butterfly Release Party whenever they hatch!  Date TBD.

Dates to be aware of (and snacks needed are marked accordingly- thanks for donations!):

  • Tues, June 5– Walking trip to Botany Pond on campus.  If it is easy for any parent to join us, walk along, feel free but we will take the trip regardless.  The weather looks like a comfortable 65 degrees that day. We will take a snack along (both classes), so please let us know if you could provide a small snack for the class (morning= 22 students, afternoon=15 students), which could be goldfish, pretzels, something easy that can be eaten independently.
  • Wed, June 6- Last day for the afternoon class’s music lessons with Ms. Justine.  We will celebrate with a small snack.  We have a pretzel donation and a banana donation so our snack is covered!  Thank you!
  • Thur, June 14- Pack-and-Play Day (sign up sheet is by the entry door).  We keep the children outside longer this day.  We need snack donations for both morning and afternoon for this day.  Please let us know if you can donate.  Thank you to those who already signed up to help!  Ms. Maggie knows the ropes and will be in charge of the packing.
  • Fri, June 15- Last day of yoga for Fit Fridays!  We, as teachers/staff, will provide the snack for this day, possibly from our garden!
  • Mon, June 18- Our last FULL day together!  We will plan to be outside, making observations as scientists in Amanda’s Garden, and playing, playing, playing.  I have some games we have not gotten to yet!
  • Tues, June 19- 9:30-10:30 (both sessions)- We will NOT be in the building, but we will meet at Bixler park for one last time to play together for the school year.  Please bring a breakfast item for yourself and child. This will be our goodbye!  What a great year it’s been!
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Greetings, Room 405 Families!

Hello Families of Room 405!

I am very excited that we already have a fun week one under our belts in Room 405 with me as a new teacher in the room!  It’s been a pleasure to work with your children, certainly.  Please feel free to reach me at klulrich-pap@cps.edu with any questions or concerns.  Ms. Bethanie has already checked in to see how the children are doing and, as you know, Ms. Maggie is an amazing support and resource.

This week, we have watched our caterpillars grow fatter and longer!  We are making observations and drawing what we see.  It’s been super cool.

Small group work was with numbers (making trains with snap-together blocks), looking at the butterflies Ms. Heiser gifted to the class that are encased in resin with our magnifying glasses, and learning a new butterfly story.  We also walked through the garden to observe (and smell!) what is happening on our way to Bixler to play.

I sent an email to all parents yesterday with the following information. **IF you did NOT get the email, please email me at klulrich-pap@cps.edu so that I can be sure to have current email addresses (and phone numbers- let me know if that has changed!).  Here is the info from the email:

  • Wednesday– we are having a very small celebration with our 4th grade Big Buddies, since this is the last time we will see them for the year.  They are providing a small snack.  If we could please have donations of fruit (I think clementines are going out, but if they look good, these are wonderful snacks and easy, or grapes or other fruit that can be eaten by hand without preparation and mess), then we will have a lovely snack to share.  There will be our 21 students plus the 25 fourth graders.  This means if 5 parents could donate fruit, we should have plenty.  Please email me to let me know BY MONDAY through email if you will donate so I can plan accordingly.   Thank you very much.
  • There is a field trip again on Friday, June 1st, 8:45a-1p-ish.  We will confirm volunteers in the next day or two.  This trip is more “open,” so it is critical that if you have signed up to attend, we can count on you coming along so that we have ample adults with our little ones.
  • Looking forward, we will have a walking trip to the Botany Pond (week of June 4th) and will need some volunteers if you are interested.  Please watch for updates to come through.  We will need a snack donated as well for this walking trip if you are interested in helping in that way.

Additional announcements:

  • Flowers were sent to Ms. Bethanie from both classes.  Thank you to all who donated- we had a lovely amount to spend on some cheer for her and they were to be delivered on Friday.
  • Library books need to be returned as soon as possible.  There is no more lending library for the year.  If you have lost a book, please simply replace it with any age-appropriate book for our classroom library.
  • There is a sign-up sheet for parent helpers for cleaning the room at the sign-in clipboard, if you can help.

Thank you all for your patience and support as we transitioned with Ms. Bethanie’s leave.  The children have been great and are so well into their routines, this week went smoothly.  (They remind me to NOT talk in the halls…)

The field trip went very well (despite us running late) and from hearing the laughs of the children, they thoroughly enjoyed themselves.  They were well-behaved and patient, attentive and respectful.  I was very proud and felt it was a very successful trip.  THANK YOU to all the parents who attended!!

There have been a lot of questions about changes in pre-k for next year.  I am happy to try to find you answers and keep you updated, of course.  We expect much more information to be available next week.  There will be a “Next Year Preference Sheet” given to the returning families, where you can indicate Full Day, Half Day AM or Half Day PM.  If those returning families could please fill this out and get it back to us asap, that would be very helpful.

See you on Tuesday!  Have a great weekend.

Mrs. Papczun (pronounced Pap-son, or Mrs. P if that’s easier for the little ones!)

 

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Week of May 14th

Hello Parents:

We enjoyed our Knuffle Bunny celebration!  We want to thank all of the parents who stayed and assisted with the day’s activities!  Our classroom field trip has been rescheduled for Tuesday, May 22nd.

We have been working in our garden and we are starting to see a few more sprouts!  The goal is to have a few tastings before we end the school year!  We are also eagerly waiting for our caterpillars to arrive!  We are excited to learn all about the life cycle of the butterfly!  Be sure to keep an eye out for caterpillars and most importantly the butterfly nets!

The end of the school year is very busy.  I have included a list of all of the important happenings!

End of the Year Events

May:

We will take taking trips to Bixler and Botany Pond, when the weather is nice.

Wednesday, May 16th– Class Spring picture (self-photographed) please be sure to be at school that day!

Friday, May 18: Ray School Walk-a-thon.  Please visit http://rayschool.dojiggy.com for more information.  All students will be walking and we would love parent volunteers to walk with us.

Tuesday, May 22ndMrs. Papczun joins our class and Ms. Bethanie is out on medical leave.

Also, on May 22nd our classroom will attend the rescheduled Knuffle Bunny field trip. Please be sure to fill out a new field trip form and turn it in ASAP. Please let us know if you can or cannot volunteer on this trip.  The more parents the better (it will be Mrs. Papczun’s first day and extra help will be greatly appreciated).  Please be sure to arrive by 8:45 and we will return to Ray by noon.  Please remember to come all the way into the classroom to sign your child in and out.

Friday, May 25: The final parent and child activity focusing on literacy.  All students and parents will attend class from 9:30-10:30.

Monday, May 28th– No Class Memorial Day

June:

Friday, June 1:  Field trip to the Peggy Notebarert Museum from 9-1 pm.

We will also be taking trips to Bixler and Botany Pond, when the weather is nice.

Thursday, June 14th: Parent Pack and Play day– we are asking for parents to volunteer to help pack away all of materials so that they are cleaned and organized for next school year!  We love starting the school year with nice clean materials.  Please be sure to sign up and help us out.

Tuesday, June 19thPreschool Goodbye Picnic (please bring food for you and your child) at Bixler Park from 9:30-10:30.  Last day of school!  Enjoy the summer!

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