Milne Grove Messenger

March 2021

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Highlighted Dates to Remember

Mon 3/1 • Pulaski Day (No School)

Tue 3/2 • No School Teacher Institute

Fri 3/5 • 2nd Trimester ends

Tue 3/9 • BOE Meeting 7:00 pm

Fri 3/12 • Report Cards Distributed

Sun 3/14 • Daylight Savings Time ( Spring Forward)

Wed 3/17 • Spring Pictures

Thurs 3/18 • Mangia Pizza Night (PTO Fundraiser)

Mon 3/29 - Mon 4/5 • Spring Break (No School)

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Principal's Page

Dear MG Families,

Thank you to all the parents that have taken the 5Essentials survey so far! Unfortunately, we have not reached the minimum threshold of parent responses to receive a score on many measures. Please consider filling out this survey; this information plays a large role in our school improvement planning process and has significant implications in our school’s rating by the Illinois State Board of Education. You can use the following link any time in March (survey closes after): (

The staff and 3rd grade students are also preparing for the Illinois Assessment of Readiness (IAR) and the Illinois Science Assessment (ISA). Teachers will be getting students familiar with the computer-based testing platform this month, and the tools they will interact with as they take the assessments. Testing will begin in April and it is anticipated to last into May. Similar to the MAP assessment, testing sessions will be spread out throughout the month to avoid students experiencing testing fatigue. Additionally, remote students will be required to test at MG and not at home, as directed by the Illinois State Board of Education. We will provide a testing schedule specifically for our remote students at each grade level before Spring Break.

Speaking of Spring Break, it will occur March 27th-April 5th. I know that many of us are ready to leave the cold and snowy February behind. Hopefully, Spring will usher in increased temperatures and the opportunity to get outside!

Call me at 815-838-0542x2104 or email

Jaime Koziol

Mrs. Jaime Koziol, Principal

815-838-0542 x2104

Mrs. Cindy Dragosh, Morning Secretary


Mrs. Dawn Magolan, Afternoon Secretary


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From The Building and Grounds Department

As part of our “Integrated Pest Management Program”, Lockport School District 91 will, as the weather permits, start applying herbicides and pesticides to both of our properties in March when students are not in attendance.

The chemicals that we apply are similar to the ones that you would use at home; i.e., Preen® for weed control in the planting beds, and Roundup® for weed control along buildings, fence lines etc. All applications are done by an Illinois Department of Agriculture licensed applicator.

Should you have any questions, please contact Mr. Jim Pierson, Director of Building and Grounds at 815-838-0737, Ext. 1146 or by Email,

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Notes From the Nurse

March is National Nutrition Month

National Nutrition Month is an annual campaign created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. This campaign encourages everyone to learn healthful physical and eating habits. You are also encouraged to learn about making informed food choices.

Good nutrition is key to good health - remember to eat the rainbow!!

Fruits and vegetables are good for snacks and meals ~ plenty of colors to choose from

Besides fruits and vegetables, we should include lean meats and protein, calcium, whole grains, and oils in our diets. We should limit the amount of sugars (especially added sugars), certain fats, and grains in our diets. When shopping, always read the nutrition label and ingredients. Try to avoid foods that have sugar as one of the first 3-5 ingredients.

Be sure that you are drinking enough water, also! Water is one of the most essential nutrients for our bodies. It is needed to carry out all functions within our body. We all need a different amount, depending on a few different factors. A good rule of thumb to ensure you are properly hydrated is to take your body weight and divide it half. That number is how many ounces of water you should drink each day. For example, if you weigh 150lb - 150lb/2= 75; you should drink 75oz or more of water a day.

This last year has changed the eating habits of many families. Many families began cooking more at home than they previously did. If you haven’t already, bring your kids into the kitchen with you and allow them to help with tasks that are age appropriate. If you have picky eaters at home, let them help plan the menu for the week. Meal planning will also help your grocery budget and I have included links to a few recipes.

Mrs. Gilkerson, RN

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at 815-838-0542 ex. 2106 or at

Snack or side dish

For more information and resources, head over to:

PTO News

March 17th: Mangia pizza night fundraiser - a portion of sales will be donated to our PTO to fund programming, supplies, and services for your child's classroom!

Email with questions!

Like the D91 PTO on Facebook!

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The Latest from the LRC

Book Notes

All students are voting for their favorite Monarch Award nominee early this month. I can’t wait to see which book wins our votes, and how we compare to the rest of the state. Then we’re on to reading about Spring and topics related to what’s going on in class.

Many students have been checking out books from our school library! If your child has not done so yet, I hope you will encourage them to submit a request. Below is a link to the Google Form - paper forms are also available in the physical classrooms and outside the library

Fully remote students may pick up books on Wednesdays from 11:30-12:30 or arrange for another time. Hybrid students will be given their books on their next in-person school day. All books are safely quarantined before being given to another student.

Did you know that your child’s Library/LRC Google Classroom contains a wealth of activities and resources? Here is just a bit of what’s available there:

  • Reading Resources: links to online reading resources and info needed to request books from the school library

  • LRC Live Recordings: videos of each week’s library session

  • Reading Rooms: MY FAVORITE! Special Bitmoji Classrooms with tons of read-alouds

  • MG Playground: “Virtual Recess” Flipgrids - kids can make short videos about whatever they desire to share with classmates, much like how they would talk to their friends at recess time. These videos are accessible to all kids in their grade anytime. Watch a few to get some ideas! Please note: each child may submit no more than THREE videos per day!

Reading Incentives & Upcoming Fun

Watch for information coming soon about National Library Week activities and student book review videos. ~ 815-838-0542, x2122 Follow me on Twitter!
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Physical Education Feats

February flew by in PE! Students spent a lot of their time focusing on our Kids Heart Challenge event! At the end, Milne Grove has raised $11,323! We crushed the $10,000 slime goal. Mrs. Draper will be sure to let all students know when and where the slime challenge will take place, so no one misses out on the fun!

The American Heart Association says that for every $50 raised during the Kids Heart Challenge, that saves approximately 1 life. Our school is so proud to say that we have saved over 225 lives!

Please allow a few weeks for the Thank You Gifts to be delivered to Milne Grove. They typically arrive near/around Spring break.

Mrs. Draper

3rd Grade


  • Students should read each night for 20 minutes to assist with their reading fluency and comprehension. Students can access the Epic website to search for a book of their choice.


  • Please continue to work with your student on fact fluency for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. They need to work on accuracy as well as speed when practicing their facts. If you would like additional resources for fact practice, please visit the third grade page under math.


  • We are currently working on our plant unit in science.

Social Studies:

  • We are currently working on our economics unit.

Please feel free to contact your child’s teacher with any questions or concerns!

Thank you,

The Third Grade Team

Mrs. Georgopulos -

Mrs. Steed -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -

2nd Grade

Second Grade March News:


Students will be reading longer fiction and nonfiction text. They are working hard on restating part of the question in their answer. Students are also being encouraged to go back in the text to prove their answer.

Social Studies

Students will begin Chapter 4, Celebrating Our Traditions. Students will learn about different cultures, celebrations, national holidays, and how songs, stories and art can pass traditions down in cultures.


After learning about erosion, we will begin learning about ecosystems. Students will learn what plants need to survive and how seeds are dispersed.


Students should continue to practice their addition and subtraction facts. We will continue with our unit of measurement. Time and money will also be incorporated into the math curriculum.

The Second Grade Team

Mrs. Bolte -

Miss Podwika -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -

1st Grade

Superkids Reading Program:

  • Spelling and reading long vowel words with a silent “e” and a double vowel

  • Understanding the importance of setting in a literary text

  • Identifying and discussing the plot of a story

  • Reading and spelling high-frequency memory words

Language and Writing:

  • Focus on writing complete sentences with the correct ending marks

  • Writing opinions effectively when given a prompt

GO Math:

  • Comparing numbers

  • Learning and identifying greater than and less than

  • Adding and subtracting 10s

  • Using a hundred chart to add

  • Introducing time to the hour

Social Studies

  • Identifying and reading different types of maps.

  • GREAT program begins with Officer S and Officer Brauch


  • Changing of seasons and the coming of Spring

  • Discussions and activities about animals and their habitats

The First Grade Team

Mrs. O'Halloran -

Mrs. Stanly -

Mrs. Lyons -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -


The Kindergarten Team

Kindergarten is practicing counting to 100 by both 1s and 10s, writing numbers 1 through 20, and on addition and subtraction. Check out these songs to help practice at home:

COUNTING SUPER HERO! (Counting by 1s to 100 for kids)
Climbing Up This Mountain (Counting by 10s up to 100)
ADD 'EM UP! (song for kids about adding +1 up to ten)
When You Add with a Pirate (addition song for kids)
When You Subtract with a Pirate (subtraction song for kids)
Numbers in the Teens (They Start with a 1) (song for kids about teen numbers)
Numbers in the Teens (Have a Group of 10)- [a place value song for kids]
We use the website GoNoodle to help us stay focused, calm and energized during our school day by using music and movement, here is the link for you to try:

We are continuing to practice blending consonant-vowel-consonant words (for example: jet, Pat, ten, sit, pot) using our “sound slide”. To practice at home, touch your shoulder while saying the first sound, your elbow for the middle then your hand for the last sound. To put the word together, slide your hand as you say the sounds.

Keep practicing the Memory words (is, it, a, I and the) for speed.

For many Math and Reading Games please take a look at our Google Classroom Streams. Here are a few of our favorites:

Mrs. Adams -

Mrs. Preboy -

Mrs. Richardson -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -

Early Learners Preschool

Upcoming Events:

Week of March 1st - The Early Learners will start their study of pets and they will be introduced to the letter “P”. They will also be introduced to the number 19.

Week of March 8th – The Early Learners will continue their study of pets and they will be introduced to the letter “A” for animals. They will also be introduced to the number 20.

Week of March 15th - The Early Learners will continue their study of pets and they will be introduced to the letter “F” for farm animals. They will also be introduced to the color pink.

Week of March 22nd – The Early Learners will continue their study of pets and they will review the letter “B” for birds. They will also review numbers 0 to 20.

Dates to Remember:

Monday, March 1st, NO SCHOOL, Pulaski Day

Tuesday, March 2nd, NO SCHOOL, Teacher Institute

Friday, March 12th -Friday, March 19th, Virtual March Family Fun Event

Monday, March 29 - Friday, April 2nd, NO SCHOOL, Spring Break

The PK Team

Mrs. Torkelson -

Mrs. Pederson, Bilingual Liaison -

Miss Ginte -

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Mrs. Nikki's Speech News

Mrs. Nikki’s Speech News

How to Travel with Communication:

Looking forward to Spring Break? If you are going on the road or simply just taking a break from school, make your break an enjoyable learning experience!

  • Involve your child in the preparation: Have your child help pack and give directions to you about what to pack and have your child talk about their preference of what they want to do during the break and why (“I want to go hiking because….”).

  • EXPAND: Describe everything around you, use new vocabulary words, target social conversations and discuss feelings (“I’m really excited to see my cousins” or “I did not like hiking because my muscles got tired”).

  • Sequence the events: Before you start the adventure, go over the events to expect (“first we will pack a bag, then we will drive to the path, then we will hike together as a family, etc.). After you are done you can have your child discuss the events of what happened that day.

  • Write/Draw about the experience: Work on writing and memory skills by logging the experience in a journal. Your child can share their favorite part of the day, key words they learned, and events that occurred.

  • Apply to what your child is already learning in school: Have discussions with your child to try and tie in school objectives to what they are experiencing.

Have a blast discovering and experiencing new things wherever you are!

From Super Duper Handouts #557

Please feel free to contact Mrs. Nikki McGushin at 815-838-0542 x2107 or email at

Relationship Roundup with Mrs. Reynolds

“How do you do that?!”

All of our Milne Grove students are engaged in some remote learning each week. When children are learning from home, there is no way around it, there are more expectations for the parents than when kids are in school every day. At District 91 we want to support you as much as possible, and unfortunately, having your wonderful children in our schools 5 days a week is not possible.

Parents are working, and helping their children, and dealing with the stress of finances, and handling chores and dealing with the ways the pandemic is affecting our lives. It’s more than a lot! It can make us angry, irritated, frustrated. But what do we do when our children lose their calm and ‘flip their lids’? It is our job as parents to show calm to our upset kids. But given everything we know we parents are doing, and how we have a lot of big feelings ourselves, “How do you do that? What if at that moment you don’t have any calm to share?"

Those are great questions! Acting calm when you are upset is not easy! That’s the truth. But it is possible. As I have written in newsletters earlier this year, first, pay attention to your nutrition, activity level, and sleep. You need to take care of your overall health and wellness. Second, as I teach your children in class, “self-talk” is powerful. For me, when my kids are pushing my buttons, I take a deep breath and tell myself “I can do this. I can stay calm.” My husband, on the other hand, has pretty different self talk. For him, it’s all a competition. He plays a game in his head that if our child gets him to lose it, the child wins. So he puts on his game face and tells himself to “Win This!” Lastly, plan in advance. Practice being calm when you are already calm. You can breathe deeply, listen to music, be deliberate about enjoying your coffee or tea, doodle, hold your pet, journal, visualize a peaceful place, take a warm bath, practice yoga, watch your favorite show, knit, read, or whatever helps you feel centered and relaxed. It definitely takes practice, so try scheduling some of these activities into your day everyday. Your future self will thank you, because the next time your child loses his calm, you can use your strategy to stay calm and model calm to him.

Contact me at

Mrs. Visser's Reading Corner

Reading fluency is the ability to read at the correct pace, with accuracy, and use of expression. At the beginning reader level the focus for reading fluency is reading accurately and working to increase reading speed. The first goal of reading fluency is reading accurately. This means reading all words on the page (not skipping over words), and correctly reading words, or using sounds to determine unknown words. The way to increase reading accuracy is repetition of reading words in isolation. Once students do well at identifying words in isolation they should practice those same words in phrases or sentences.

The second goal of reading fluency is for students to increase the speed of their reading because it will allow them to better comprehend what they are reading. Students need to work to go from reading at a word by word level to reading smoother sentences. The way to increase reading fluency is with a lot of practice and modeling. At home have your child read as often as possible. Your child can also listen to books being read aloud to them on sites such as Epic, Starfall, or Storyline online. The more students read, the more fluent they will become. Happy Reading!

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

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This month, we put focus on various art careers. We used Interior Designers, Architects, Industrial Designers, and now we are exploring Commercial Design. A Commercial Designer is an artist that designs the package we see in stores that are appealing to our eye, as consumers. Students will be tasked with creating a package from our invention from last week OR they can redesign their favorite cereal, candy, or ice cream container or wrapper. Students can even invent their own product! We will also look at the awesome Commercial Art inspired paintings by Burton Morris. Next, we will be looking at various gallery artists and using their inspiration to create our own versions honoring their talents.

Mrs. Cravens


In technology class K-3 students will be focusing on digital citizenship. Digital citizenship is how individuals should act when they are using digital tools, interacting with others online, and what should be taught to help the next generations be effective and positive with technology. Being a digital citizen means being safe and responsible on the Internet. We will focus on the following parts of being a digital citizen everyday:

  • Creating media balance in life

  • Keeping private information safe

  • Building positive digital footprints

  • Communicating kindly

  • Thinking carefully about things that are seen online

-Mrs. Lakics

Technology Teacher

-Mrs. Lakics

Technology Teacher:

Music Notes

MG Music News

D91 Families: Making Music Together.

Check Music Web Pages for links to songs to sing and play together.

Contact Mrs. Randolph K-8 Music & KG Chorus Director Email: PHONE: 815-838-0737 ext. 1140

CONTINUED REQUEST: when contacting me, please include student’s first and last name, grade, and homeroom teacher. Thank you.

BLENDED & REMOTE MUSIC RULES: Students will need paper and pencils or have white marker boards with markers, to use during classes. Students will be asked individual questions for graded responses and need to turn microphone on and off when requested.

Grades K & 1: No longer answer check in question each week

Grades 2 & 3:

1 - Answer WEEKLY Google Classwork question by the end of the first class each week. That grade will be averaged at the end of the Trimester. Students have only one day to make up late work. After that all missing work will be a zero and can’t be made up.

2 - Complete the assigned LESSON & GAME in Harmonic Vision - Music Maestro = MM

Grade 3:

1 - Play recorder at home - DO bring recorders to school to finger, but do NOT play at school

2 - Record assigned recorder songs on Flipgrid and read Google comments and emails

To Contact Mrs. Randolph K-8 Music & KG Chorus Director

Email: PHONE: 815-838-0737 ext. 1140

Substitutes Needed!!

If you like interacting with the kids, and can be flexible. If you enjoy different settings, and different age groups of kids. This is what you have been looking Contact Athena Dingels for details (must possess a bachelor's degree and be willing to obtain the sub teacher credential through ISBE).