Cougar Comments

September 8, 2017 - VOLUME 39, ISSUE 1

Clemens Crossing Elementary School

Edward Cosentino, Principal

Elizabeth Yankle, Assistant Principal

Events Coming Up

For a complete list of dates and events visit


  • 8 - PTA Back-to-School Family Picnic, 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  • 13 - PTA Kick-Off Meeting, 6:30 pm
  • 18 - Back-to-School Night for Grades K, 1 & 2 at 6:30 pm
  • 19 - Gifted & Talented Information Session, 6:00 pm
  • 19 - Back-to-School Night for Grades 3, 4, & 5 at 6:30 pm
  • 21 - Schools and Offices Closed
  • 22 - Schools Closed for Students - Professional Learning Day
  • 25 - PTA Read-a-thon begins
  • 27 - In-school Banking
  • 27 - PTA Room Parent & Committee Chair Meeting, 7:00 pm


  • 3 - PTA Restaurant Night at Chick-fil-a (Johns Hopkins Road)
  • 11 - PTA Meeting, 7:00 pm

To subscribe to the CCES Calendar on your smartphone, electronic device, or email system use the calendar ID

A Message from Mr. Cosentino

We had a wonderful opening week of school! Our first week went smoothly as we welcomed 550 enthusiastic students back to Clemens Crossing. Everyone seems to be getting used to the routines that the new school year brings.
As Mrs. Yankle and I have walked throughout the building, we are pleased to see students engaged in learning in their new classrooms. Mrs. Yankle and I had a meeting with the students from each grade level, and we discussed behavioral expectations, our school rules, and some important school policies. It is great to see such an engaged school community.

Communication is a vital skill in this day and age. At Clemens Crossing, we aim to communicate in a variety of ways. Please keep an eye out for our newsletter. We are going to publish the Cougar Comments every week throughout the school year. It is very important for parents to read this newsletter as it contains a great deal of important school, school system, and community news.

As times have changed and communication has evolved, we are keeping pace with the times. Twitter helps us keep you informed in real time. I encourage you to keep informed by following CCES on Twitter. Follow us @hcpss_cces. Tweets also automatically post on our Facebook at
Mrs. Yankle and I will be tweeting reminders about upcoming activities as well as highlights that are taking place around the building. It will also be a great way to get a “behind the scenes” look at Clemens Crossing.

I hope the first week of school went well for you and your family. We all look forward to an incredible school year!

Ed Cosentino, Principal

Staff Spotlight - Mrs. Angela Haube

Mrs. Haube serves as the instructional team leader and teacher in fifth grade. This year marks her thirtieth year in education. Her journey as an educator started at St. Johns Lane Elementary School in 1988. After working at St. Johns Lane ES for two years, she moved to Laurel Woods Elementary School where she taught fifth grade for twelve years. She spent six years as a private school administrator before returning to teach fifth grade here at CCES. Mrs. Haube was encouraged to become a teacher at an early age by two influential teachers, Mrs. Robinson and Mr. Ayers. She attended the University of Maryland where she received her Bachelor's Degree. She earned her Master's Degree from The Johns Hopkins University in Special Education. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, singing in her choir, and attending concerts. Mrs. Haube lives in Howard County with her husband, Dan. She has two children, Ben and Kevin, ages 25 and 22 respectively. She also cares for her mother who recently moved in with her. Mrs. Haube loves the Clemens Crossing community and feels that it is the best place to work.
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Band and Strings at CCES

Third grade students can select a stringed instrument to learn this year, while fourth and fifth grade students can choose to learn either a stringed instrument or a band instrument.
The students will have an opportunity at school to test out some of the instruments they would like to consider playing this year.

There will be a parent informational meeting on Tuesday, September 12 at 6:30 pm in the media center. You will have an opportunity to meet Ms. DeSantis and find out more about the Band and Strings program here at Clemens Crossing.

Here’s how you can register your child for the program:

  1. Online
  2. Go to or go to
  3. Pick up a hard copy registration form from outside the band/string room door.

Questions? Contact Ms. DeSantis at

Kindergarten Curricular Corner

We are excited to begin first quarter in Kindergarten with many opportunities to engage students with hands on learning to promote social, emotional, cognitive and physical skills to strengthen and grow.

In Social Studies, we will become aware of our school and classroom environment by collaborating together to determine appropriate classroom rules and establish daily routines.

In Health, we will demonstrate skills for building a classroom community by making friends and understanding the importance of taking turns and sharing. We will learn how to value and accept each other, recognizing ways we are alike and different.

In Language Arts, we will listen to read aloud stories and share our ideas verbally, by drawing pictures, and writing. Rhyming, beginning sound recognition, and concepts of print skills will be focused on in small group and whole group instruction.

Math concepts and skills will be explored using a variety of hands on manipulatives to count, sort attributes and compare more or less of a quantity. We will explore basic shapes and look for them in our environment describing their location. Number recognition and formation of numerals 0-9 will also be focused on in small group and whole group settings.

In Science, we will become scientists and engineers exploring through hands on experiments and learning about the Engineer Design Process.

Social skills, gross and fine motor opportunities will be fostered daily through movement breaks and a variety of learning centers such as Playdough, blocks, sensory table, Legos, dramatic play, puzzles and games.

First Grade Curricular Corner

First grade is a busy place! In the first quarter of first grade, we are spending time establishing routines and the learning expectations. We are emphasizing the importance of school rules and how to make friends as we build our classroom communities.

In English/Language Arts (ELA), we are excited to teach and implement the “Daily Five” rotations, as well as our guided Reading and Writing groups.

First graders will learn plant and animal functions and we will take a field trip to support what we are learning in our Science classes (information will be forthcoming.)

In Math, first graders will work on number routines and number concepts such as counting to 120, comparing numbers, and place value. We will learn strategies to master our basic addition and subtraction facts to 10.

Second Grade Curricular Corner

English/Language Arts (ELA):
In Writing, students will write personal narratives in which students recount a well-elaborated event or short sequence of events, include details to describe actions, thoughts, and feelings, use temporal words to signal event order, and provide a sense of closure.

During Reading, students will know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words, and read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension. Students will be introduced to the realistic fiction genre and respond to reading orally and in written form.

In Health this quarter, students will demonstrate the ability to use mental health knowledge, skills, and strategies to enhance one’s self-concept and one’s relationship with others.

During Science, students will plan and carry out investigations in order to make observations of a variety of materials. Students will analyze qualitative data, finding patterns, in order to compare and classify materials based on their properties. Exploring cause and effect relationships, students will be able to determine which materials have the properties that are best suited for an intended purpose. Students will also work collaboratively to generate and compare designs that harness the power of the wind. The description of matter will be limited to student explanations based on the model representation of an object being made up of a set of small pieces that can then be dissembled and made into a different object.

Social Studies:

In Social Studies, we will be learning about communities with a focus on:

  • Cooperation in school and community
  • Geographic features
  • Comparing rural, urban, and suburban communities
  • State comparison
  • Symbols

In Math this quarter, we will be doing a variety of activities include number routines, fact fluency, place value, word problems, telling time, identifying and counting coins, and using strategies to solve problems.

Third Grade Curricular Corner

English/Language Arts (ELA):

In Language Arts students will start the year with a reading unit focusing on a community of learners. In this unit students will learn attributes of fiction. Students will explore a variety of folktales to derive an understanding of it’s attributes. We will finish our quarter with Poetry.

In Writing, students will be working on writing about reading. This unit will focus on developing responses to reading that reflect an understanding of what they have read. Students first learn to analyze and interpret questions, then respond to text. Students will develop responses that incorporate relevant information from the text including text features. They will also show an understanding of new vocabulary and concepts, characteristics of genre, and the relationship among plot, setting, and character traits. We will also be using our knowledge of the characteristics of folktales to write original stories.


In the first quarter of Grade 3 Math, the students will work on several skills. First, rounding numbers to the nearest tens and hundreds place. Also, adding and subtracting numbers up to 1,000 using various place value methods. Furthermore, students will be introduced to the concepts of multiplication and division. Finally, our multiplication and division facts of focus are 2’s, 5’s, and 10’s.

Math Above Grade Level:

Students will continue to increase their understanding of whole numbers in the first quarter. Multi-digit whole numbers will be analyzed for place value, compared, and fluently added and subtracted. Students will also develop their mastery of multiplication and division. Multiplication problems will be interpreted and division problems will include multi-digit dividends and remainders. Furthermore, equations with letters representing the unknown will be included this quarter.


The focus is on mental health knowledge, skills, and strategies. Throughout the unit, we will identify complex emotions and the importance of using effective communication skills to express ourselves. We will also identify different stressors and discuss age-appropriate stress management strategies to cope with them. Moreover, we will identify components of a healthy family and discuss different family relationships, the many ways family members show they care for one another, and how families can resolve conflicts. Students will identify and describe social needs as a member of a classroom community. We will describe and demonstrate the difference between telling and tattling. Finally, students will learn how to apply the decision-making process when dealing with health issues and problems.


Through this unit, students will explore weather and research the difference between weather and climate. They will discover the important role that temperature and precipitation take when determining a region’s climate. Students will use the Science and Engineering Practices to observe weather throughout the unit and will discover trends in the weather data they collect. Students will describe Maryland’s climate and look at how climates of different regions may change over time. Students will then look at weather related hazards and determine the effectiveness of design solutions already in place in Howard County. Students will make a claim about these solutions and be able to defend their claim with evidence from investigations.

Social Studies:

Our first unit of Social Studies is Changing Communities. In this unit, students will learn about life in historic Ellicott City. They will compare and contrast the elements of technology, communication, and transportation from past to present. Students will also examine the role of trade in the global community and the impact of natural disasters within a community.

Fourth Grade Curricular Corner


In this unit, students will analyze cause and effect relationships as well as plan and carry out investigations of energy in order to collect evidence to construct an explanation of the relationship between the speed of an object and the energy of that object; develop an understanding that energy can be transferred from place to place or from object to object through collisions; and apply understanding of energy to design, test, and refine a device that converts energy from one form to another.


In the first quarter, we will be focusing on the following standards and they will be revisited throughout the year: place value, reading and writing numbers, comparing numbers, rounding, multiplicative comparison, word problems (multi-step with interpreting remainders), 2 digit x 1 digit multiplication and 2 digit x 1 digit division, factors, multiples and prime/composite numbers.


Students will be able to:

• Identify risk factors associated with disease control

• Explain how body defenses and the immune system help prevent disease

• Analyze personal daily habits and choices that increase the risk of developing disease

• Examine the physical, social, and emotional effects of disease

• Explain how disease affects the lifestyles of both the individual and the family

Social Studies:

The first unit is called The First People. This unit entails the following social studies standards:

· Maryland has a large variety of natural and human features (map skills)

· Maryland had several Native American tribes with unique and diverse cultures (Primary source analysis)

· The different cultures of Native American influence on how each of them used the environment to meet their wants and needs.

· A number of European countries (e.g. Portugal, Spain, Italy, England, France, etc.) explored North America in hopes of expanding their empire and increasing their wealth.

· Native Americans and European explorers had different perspectives about what was best for North America (sourcing evidence)

· There were both positive and negative effects of the Native Americans and English explorers sharing their traditions and technology

English/Language Arts (ELA):

Students in fourth grade Language Arts will read informational and literary texts. They will refer to details from the text to support their responses when drawing inferences, describing characters, stating their opinion, or describing what happened in a text and why it happened. Children will also focus on vocabulary and context clues that are used by the author in order to interpret words and phrases and how they affect meaning or tone. Text structure will be identified for informational texts. Students will also integrate information from two texts on the same topic. Finally, in Reading, students will report on topics, tell a story, or recount an experience in an organized manner, speaking clearly and at an understandable pace.

In Writing, students will work on expanding their written responses to the text. Memoirs will be our Writing topic for the first quarter. We will read a variety of Memoirs to determine their characteristics. We will then write our own Memoirs going through the whole writing process.

Fifth Grade Curricular Corner

In the first quarter, 5th grade students will be reading and writing historical fiction during English/Language Arts (ELA). They will also focus on learning even more Greek and Latin roots to expand their understanding and skill with vocabulary. We will begin Independent Daily Reading and practice our skill in writing summaries and friendly letters.

Math differs for 5th graders based upon which curriculum they are studying. Students working on 5th grade skills will study place value, including decimal values, multiplying and dividing whole numbers, and basic concepts and operations with fractions. Students in accelerated (6th grade) math will begin the quarter mastering the standard algorithm for long division, and then move on to study numerical expressions and equations, including the order of operations and an introduction to variables. Students in GT Math will begin a study of number systems, focusing on properties of rational numbers and then move on to study ratios and proportions as well as graphing in the four quadrant plane.

Social Studies will mainly be a study of American history this year in 5th grade. We will begin that study with learning the causes and outcome of the American Revolution.

Science will begin with a study of Earth’s systems and how they interact. We will look closely at the water cycle and examine how humans impact the watershed with our choices.

Health this marking period focuses on social and emotional health. We will look at stress – the sources of stress and how it impacts us as well as healthy choices for managing stress in our lives.


You may hear teachers or students discuss PBIS this year. PBIS stands for Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports. The teachers and staff are using the PBIS framework to help set expectations for student behavior at school and reward students when they meet or exceed these expectations.
Throughout the school, students are expected to exhibit R.O.A.R. behaviors in school. R.O.A.R. stands for Respectful, Organized, Achieving, and Responsible. Teachers and administrators are spending time ensuring that students know and understand these expectations. Students have the opportunity to earn ROAR Tickets on a daily basis. When they earn 50+ ROAR tickets, they get a certificate and their picture on the "Climbing Cougar" Mountain bulletin board across from the cafeteria. Another way we recognize students is through ACE Awards. ACE stands for Achievement, Citizenship, and Effort. Students earn an ACE charm and get their picture taken as a group. Pictures are displayed on a bulletin board across from the front office. The ACE award winners are also posted on Twitter and on our website.

Important Message from HCDrugFree

The school system's partnership with the Howard County Health Department resulted in the following video being available for view. I encourage you to take a few moments to view this important parent message regarding drug abuse within our county. Thank you.



HC DrugFree partners with the Howard County Public School System and Parent Teacher Associations to provide drug and alcohol resources to school staff, students, parents and the community. Together we can save lives.

HC DrugFree focuses on ALL drugs including alcohol; however, this message is about the current opioid epidemic in Howard County. Opioids are legally prescribed pain medications as well as illegal drugs such as heroin and fentanyl. The County is experiencing an increasing number of fatal and nonfatal opioid overdoses and too many families are feeling the devastation from the loss of a child -- or a parent. As with any epidemic, we need to educate ourselves and protect our families.

Some Howard County stories begin with a child – just like yours -- having dental surgery or a sports injury and being prescribed legal pain medication. That may be your child’s first exposure to an opioid.

Youth in Howard County focus groups told HC DrugFree how, at age 12 or 14 after taking just one pill or a few pills, they were hooked. They liked the feeling and therefore, took all 30 pills and wanted more. If your child can’t get more pills, they can get that same high from heroin – and your kids can get heroin and OTHER drugs WITHOUT leaving your neighborhood. Not my child! Yes, your child.

What can YOU do?

Talk with your doctor! When prescribed pain medication, ask if it’s an opioid, if you can take a lower dose, or if non-opioid options are available. Our website has a complete list of questions.

Keep unnecessary medications out of your home. You can ask the doctor for 3 rather than 30 pills.

Monitor your medications. Do you know how many pills you have, where the pill bottles are, or who has access to them?

Safely secure all medications. Purchase a medication storage box like this one. If you don’t have a storage box, lock your medications in a safe, closet, or filing cabinet.

Properly dispose of unwanted and expired medications throughout the year or take medications to a drive-thru medication collection event.
Twice a year, HC DrugFree holds a convenient drive-thru collection in partnership with the Howard County Police. We collect needles, syringes, and EpiPens at those events as well.

Suggest that your teen fulfills their community service hours by joining HC DrugFree’s Teen Advisory Council or volunteering at our community events. They’ll learn the facts about drugs and alcohol, and get accurate answers to their questions—which can save their lives.

Volunteer to be one of your school’s HC DrugFree Representatives.

Sign up for our free electronic newsletter to get important Howard County updates. You can ask us questions and we’ll have local experts respond with timely, accurate information.

Like HC DrugFree on Facebook, retweet our information, and visit our website.

We wish your family a safe school year. Together, we can save lives.

Thank you.

Visiting or Picking Up Students at CCES

All visitors to Clemens Crossing must bring a driver’s license and sign in with our LobbyGuard visitor management system. Details regarding this mandatory process are explained in Interim Superintendent Michael Martirano’s blog.

Additionally, we require a picture ID when you pick-up your child early from school.

Due to the busy nature of dismissal, we request early dismissal pickups take place
3:15 p.m.

Parent Volunteer Procedures at CCES

We value our volunteers and the contributions they make to our students and schools. Parents who wish to volunteer must complete a brief training course online and submit a certificate of completion to their school. This also includes anyone who chaperones a field trip. Details are available on our website.

CCES PTA Fall Play "Beauty and the Beast Jr"

The CCES PTA in conjunction with School House Theater Arts is proud to announce that the Fall play for this year will be
"Beauty And The Beast Jr."

Registration will begin for 4th and 5th graders beginning Monday, September 11th. If there are remaining openings, registration will then be expanded to 3rd graders starting Monday, September 18th. The deadline for registration will be Monday, September 25th. The cost to participate in the play is $170 per child (there is a discount for siblings.)

Rehearsals will be held on Wednesdays starting September 27th. Performance dates are November 16th and Friday, November 17th. Stay tuned for updated information!

If you have questions, please feel free to contact Jennifer Molinari at or at 410.707.5786.

Download registration form here.

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Don't Delay, Join Your PTA and Get Your CCES Car Magnet!

The 2017-18 membership rates are $15 for a family and $10 for an individual.

Consider all the programs your PTA brings to the school -- Cultural Arts assemblies, after school classes, field trip support, the Science Fair, International Night, Talent Show, Carnival, etc., etc., etc., and support your PTA! This year we are encouraging families to pay their membership and/or direct donation with a check payable to: CCES PTA. We pay a fee for every electronic transaction processing, and the fees add up fast. Please consider writing a check so all of your contributions support students and programs here at school.

When you join PTA, you will receive one magnet for individual membership and two magnets for family membership.
PTA Membership Form

Type and print (Word Document) Print and handwrite (PDF Version)

PTA Kickoff Meeting and Dinner

Wednesday, Sep. 13th, 6:30pm

Clemens Crossing ES - Media Center, 10320 Quarterstaff Road, Columbia, MD, United States

Please come and share your knowledge and ideas!

PTA Directory Information

The PTA no longer collects contact information for the student directory. HCPSS provides our PTA with this information. When you are providing your emergency contact information in Family File, be sure to opt in to receive communications in the “PTA/PTSA School Directory Information” section.

Girls on the Run Fall 2017 Season

CCES is forming a Girls on the Run team for the fall. GOTR is open to girls in grades 3-5. More information can be found at
HCPSS Community News and Programs

This link contains community notices are neither sponsored nor endorsed by the Howard County Public School System.

Adding the CCES Google Calendar to Your Personal Online/Email Calendar

Did you know you can subscribe to the CCES Calendar and see events on your computer and/or smartphone?
Why subscribe to the calendar? You will have all of CCES's events embedded in your calendar. If events change, the calendar will be updated immediately.

The calendar ID is: There are many "how to" tutorials online you can view to learn how to properly sync your calendar. It depends on your email provider, computer platform, and brand of smartphone.

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