Kindergarten/First Grade Class Handbook 2012-2013
The First Day
School begins at 8:30am. Please have your child here at school between 8:15 and 8:30 to avoid being tardy. Students must wait on the playground outside until school starts. When it is time for us to go inside, we will line up to take pictures. Parents are welcome to take pictures at this time to document your child's first day. Then we will wave goodbye and head inside to begin our day. I know it may be difficult to say goodbye to your child, but please know they will be loved and taken care of in my classroom.
I will be communicating with you about your child's week through the home folder and email. I have purchased these folders for you but if your child loses it during the year, you will need to send a replacement. In the folder will be a behavior calendar, papers, and school notes.
Please follow through at home for any unacceptable behaviors that occur during the school day this will help your child be more successful in school and make our days more pleasant. I appreciate your help!
Homework will be sent home the third week of school. Homework and book bags go home on Fridays. All work must be completed and returned on the following Thursday. If work is completed and turned in on time, students may wear free dress on Friday.
Please make sure your child knows which mode of transportation he or she is taking to go home. For your child's safety, a written notice (or email) is necessary for any changes in transportation.
Behavior is one of the most important elements of the school day. If behavior is out of control, then learning is not possible. I use several classroom management strategies to help motivate students to make positive choices. I use a class marble jar to motivate the whole class to work together to meet class behavior goals. When the whole class is on task, they will recieve marbles in our class jar. When the jar is full, we will vote on a way to celebrate our achievement.
The other behavior management strategy I use is a classroom clip chart. Every student has a clip with their name on it. Each day their clip starts on ready to learn, indicating they are ready for the day. When they make good choices, thier clip moves up the chart. When they make bad choices their clip goes down. When they end their day, if thier clip is on ready to learn or is higher on the chart, they will recieve corduroy cards. They can use thier corduroy cards on Friday to buy things in the corduroy store.
The levels of our clipchart are as follows:'
Way to Go
Ready to Learn *where each students clip will start for the day
Make Better Choices
I don't believe in a child's day being “over” because of poor choices so I allow students to move up and down during the day. For example, if a student made very poor choices in the morning, but had worked hard and tried his or her best for the afternoon, they can “redeem” themselves from their sad face and end the day with a smile. The only exception to this, would be in the case of a student physically harming another student. In this case they will be sent to the office and their parent will be notified.
All lunch money needs to be sent in an envelope with the student's first and last name. Please do not send money without an envelope. You can pay for lunch in advance by the month. We will be sending home the hot lunch monthly schedule the third Friday of each month
Please pack healthy snacks in your child's lunch. Fruit, veggies and foods low in sugar are best for helping students focus. Remember your child is growing, so please be sure to pack enough food for both snack time and lunch time.
Please place any money that is coming to school in an envelope labeled with the following information:
Child's first and last name
Purpose of money (field trip, book order, fund raiser, etc.)
In kindergarten and first grade, students do not receive a "letter" grade. Students are required to master certain objectives before they can be promoted to first and second grade. Among these objectives are knowledge of:
25 sight words
counting to 30
First graders will also be expected to master the following
Recognition of 100 sight words
Other factors include work habits and maturity. In my classroom, you will receive information throughout the year in the form of report cards and your child's school work. We will also make time during the year to meet and discuss progress and set goals together.
The most important work habit in our classroom is that we all "do our best".
Drinking water in is highly encouraged in our classroom. It is especially important during hot weather. With this in mind, your child is allowed to bring his/her own water bottle into class and leave it on the shelf by our classroom sink. If you would like, please allow your child to bring a small bottle labeled with a name to class. Bottles will be sent home daily to be washed. A reusable bottle is preferable to a disposable bottle in order to reduce waste.
Your child will be bringing homework home beginning on the 3rd week of school. The purpose of any homework sent home will be to reinforce concepts already taught in the classroom. Homework will be sent home on Friday and should be returned by the following Thursday. During short weeks or before special events, your child may not have homework. Completion of weekly homework will result in a satisfactory grade on the kindergarten report card. If your child turns in their book bag, folder, journal and library book by Thursday, they may wear free dress on Friday.
Treats may be brought in for birthdays in the morning. Please communicate with me before your child's birthday to allow me to plan for a classroom celebration. If you would like to send party invitations to the students in our class, please choose to invite all of the girls or all of the boys or the whole class if you would like invitations passed out during school. I would happy to quietly insert these invitations into our Take Home folders. If just a few children are invited, please send these invitations on your own. We will celebrate and eat your child's treat at the end of the day.
We love to celebrate holidays in our classroom. By celebrating, I mean there will usually be a celebration that combines learning activities and art projects as well as games. Parent volunteers are welcomed and encouraged to participate in our class parties. You can find out more information under the class calendar tab. This year we are looking for parent volunteers who would be willing to sign up monthly to plan parties/organize class events.
All holidays will be discussed in the classroom as a part of our Social Studies curriculum. We will be studying the holidays to learn more about our diverse American culture. Historical holidays, such as Thanksgiving, will be celebrated as a part of our American history.
We will, of course, be having many celebrations in our classroom to celebrate all we have learned. Notes telling you about the exciting events in our classroom will come home throughout the year.
If you are interested in volunteering, I would love to have your help! Please fill out our “Volunteer Form” with the days and times you are available and what kind of jobs you would like to do (preparing activities, making copies, working in small groups, etc.). Using volunteers in the classroom requires teacher time and preparation. Because the first weeks of school are very busy, I will not be using volunteers until September. Please remember that you must be registered at the front office in order to volunteer in the classroom!
Volunteers will be scheduled with a time that is helpful to the teacher and students. I am able to use your help so much better when I know when you are coming and have a task prepared for you. If you are scheduled to volunteer on a certain day or time and are not able to come, please let me know, as this will save me the preparation time.