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Newsletter 1/6/2014
Monday, January 13, 2014 9:25 AM

Dear Families,

I’m sure by now you have heard that there is no school on Monday, January 6, and that it’s iffy for Tuesday.  I’m very grateful to Governor Dayton for keeping our little ones at home and out of busses during the cold snap.  I’m pretty cozy here at home, too.  

This Week

We will revisit our goals for the year and practice our routines.  It’s been a long time since we’ve been at school, so we’ll “go slow to go fast” this week.  Our focus will be Rosa Parks, whose story inspires us to speak out to advocate for those who are being treated unfairly.  We’ll be learning about her story, and if all goes well, creating a little play.

The Calendars

I hope that each of you got a calendar illustrated by your child.  Each month represents a person who was heroic in some way- who really let his or her “light” shine. We chose a balance of men and women and kids, and tried to include people that our students would connect with and relate to.  We added the names and pictures to the front of the calendar so that you could  find out more.

The Project

I hope that everyone has a handle on the Light Project.  If you need a new copy of the directions, let me know.  It is due next Monday, January 13.  Students will share their projects with the class on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, which gives us some leeway if you need another day or two with your project.  Thursday we will have our Light Fair, from 7:45-8:15, when all family members are invited to see what we have learned.

Break v. Buddy Room

As we start the new year, it’s natural for students to test their boundaries. If your student gets a “break,” it means a minute or two in our “quiet place” right in the classroom.  The “break” helps the student regain self-control and stay with the class while doing so. It is very normal for a student to have a break or two every day, although sometimes there are more or fewer.  After a break, the student is welcomed back with little or no discussion. A visit to the “buddy room” means that the student is not responding to a break or that there are behaviors which require removal from the class.  I send a signal to Dawn, and she comes and gets the child for a break in her classroom.  I  retrieve the child in a few minutes, we  have a little chat, making a plan to change the behavior.  Sometimes students fill out a “fix it” plan to help them get ready for the chat.  If your child goes to the buddy room, I usually let you know via email or a note in the BEE Book.  Buddy room visits are infrequent.  Usually one or two a week for the whole class.  

I hope this helps!  Thanks for your support.