IMES Family News

November 2023

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IMES Vision Statement

Our vision is to create an inclusive, collaborative, and welcoming community of learners who experience a kind, responsible, and safe environment and a sense of belonging. We believe in creating joyful and meaningful academic, social, and emotional learning opportunities, building a foundation for independence and lifelong learning.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

We look forward to seeing everyone for parent-teacher conferences!

November 2 (Early Dismissal at 12:15 pm & Pick-Up is at 11:50 am)

November 6 (Early Dismissal at 12:15 pm & Pick-Up is at 11:50 am)

November 8 (Early Dismissal at 12:15 pm & Pick-Up is at 11:50 am)

If you have not signed up for conferences, please go to our school website, and click on Parent Teacher Conferences under the Quick Links section. The directions and links are available to you.

If you are picking your child up at 11:50 am in the gym on the 1/2 days, please be sure to complete the Dismissal Change Form (link further down in the newsletter or located on our school website under Quick Links).

Mark Your Calendar!


Wednesday, November 1 Interim Reports/Campus Parent Opens

Thursday, November 2 Early Dismissal at 12:15 pm/ No lunch served

Thursday, November 2 Parent-Teacher Conferences 6 pm -8 pm

11/2-11/9 PTO Bookfair

Saturday, November 4 PTO Bookfair 10 am - 2 pm

Monday, November 6 Early Dismissal at 12:15 pm/No lunch served

Monday, November 6 Parent-Teacher Conferences 1 pm - 3:45 pm & PTO Grade 5 Bingo

Tuesday, November 7 Schools Closed/ Election Day/ Superintendent's Conference Day

Wednesday, November 8 Early Dismissal at 12:15 pm/No lunch served

Wednesday, November 8 Parent-Teacher Conferences 6 pm - 8 pm

Friday, November 10 Schools Closed: Veteran's Day

Wednesday, November 15 Pre-K Panel at Katonah Elementary School at 9:30 am

Thursday, November 16 PTO Meeting & Principal's Coffee at 9:30 am

Friday, November 17 School Based Compact Team (DEIB) 8:15 am

Friday, November 17 School Spirit Day, Sharing Assemblies, School Store

Friday, November 17 Grade 1 Gratitude Music Performance for families at 2:45 pm

Monday, November 20. Grade 1 50th Day of School Celebration

Wednesday, November 22 Grade 3 Balloon Parade at 10:30 am

Thursday, November 23 Schools Closed/Thanksgiving

Friday, November 24 Schools Closed

Wednesday, November 29 Grade 4 Field Trip (3 classes)

Thursday, November 30 Grade 4 Field Trip (1 class)


Tuesday, December 5: PTO Holiday Boutique

Wednesday, December 6: PTO Holiday Boutique

Thursday, December 7: PTO Holiday Boutique

Friday, December 15: School Based Compact Team (DEIB) 8:15 am

Friday, December 22: School Spirit Day, Sharing Assemblies, & Grade 5 Winter Party

December 23 - January 1: Winter Recess/Schools Closed

Tuesday, January 2: Students return to school

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See the PTO Eagle Express for more Book Fair Details!

Pre-K Panel Flyer with Link

This year, Katonah Elementary School Staff will be hosting this informational session for incoming Kindergarten families and students

K-5 November Curriculum Highlights

Each month, we will be providing curriculum highlights from each grade level. Please know that these are snapshots and do not reflect all the curriculum and learning in the classroom.

Kindergarten: In reading, students will continue to develop their knowledge of letters—their names, associated sounds, and formation. Students will learn to read books that contain familiar snap words and leverage their alphabet knowledge to help them check their reading as they go. Readers will work with a partner coaching each other when things don’t make sense or when pointing doesn’t match. In writing, students learn how to engage in the beginning process of spelling: drawing, labeling, revising, writing the most salient sounds, and then “stretching out” these sounds into full words, stringing words through phonetic spelling into full sentences and creating their own books. In math, students will continue to explore and compare numbers to 10 through a variety of lessons, activities, and games. In science the students have taken on the role of scientists in order to figure out why no monarch caterpillars live in the area that was converted from a field to a community vegetable garden. They are investigating how plants and animals get what they need to live and grow, and they will make a new plan for the garden that will provide for the needs of the monarch caterpillars and produce vegetables for humans.

Grade 1: First graders have begun their word detective training, learning that, like a detective, readers are always on alert to spot when there is a problem and to solve it. Readers will look closely at words from start to finish zooming in at word endings such as -s and -ing. Readers are increasing their recognition of snap words to read with automaticity and using their knowledge of letter sounds such as vowels, digraphs, and blends to read new words. Children will work on monitoring their comprehension across a text to keep track of important story elements. In Writing Workshop, students have begun a new genre, informational writing while working on How To books. They will use both pictures and words to teach detailed steps to complete a task. First grade mathematicians are learning strategies to solve addition facts to 20. We are excited to celebrate the 50th day of school with activities planned around this fun decade and the number 50! In science, students will be studying how animals use their structures to defend themselves from predators. Later this month, students will have the opportunity to study a live animal to learn what body parts and behaviors help them grow and thrive!

Grade 2: Second graders are getting ready to tackle non-fiction in both reading and writing. Students will share their expertise in an informational writing unit and learn the conventions of non-fiction books during reading. Second graders continue to partake in daily Heggerty and Fundations lessons to deepen their phonological awareness and phonetic abilities. In math students will learn several strategies as they add numbers within 100. Second graders continue to be ‘glue engineers’ in class. Scientists are observing, predicting, testing, and recording results and using those results to forge forward in the design process.

Grade 3: In November, nonfiction will become our focus in ELA. In reading, students will learn essential skills for reading nonfiction. They will learn to read expository texts with fluency, determine what is important, and ascertain main ideas. In writing, students will teach others by creating expert-based books. Third graders will learn to write introductions, organize information, and include text features that help their readers. In math, students will apply strategies to achieve fluency with multiplication and division facts within 100. This month, 3rd graders will learn about forces in science. They will create physical and diagram models and write scientific explanations detailing how the Maglev (magnetic levitation) train appears to defy gravity by floating.

Grade 4: In November, students will be diving into reading non-fiction texts. They will practice using text features to make quality predictions, strengthen word attack skills, locate essential information, and set a purpose for their reading. They will also learn how to determine and comprehend the main idea based on the structure of the text. In writing, students will construct personal and persuasive essays with a focus on making a claim and supporting it with evidence. In math, students will continue to use strategies and properties to multiply by both one- and two-digit numbers. In social studies, students will discuss the indigenous peoples of New York and how their environment and local resources impacted their lifestyles. Finally, fourth graders will begin their energy unit in science. Students will make sustainability connections, learn about different forms of energy, and how one form of energy is converted to another.

Grade 5: In November, 5th grade mathematicians explore and apply the standard algorithm for multiplying multi-digit numbers. The strategies learned in this unit support the work that comes next, multiplying decimals and estimating products. In ELA, as the year began, students focused on the elements of fiction in reading. In November, they will shift to tackling the complexities of non-fiction. This work will center on multiple main ideas, word attack strategies, various text structures, and connecting parts of the text to the whole text to support finding a central idea. In writing workshop, students will take on the role of a reporter as they embark on their understanding of journalistic writing. Patterns of the Earth and sky will be the focus of 5th grade science investigations in November. To help them determine the missing piece of a fictional artifact, students will discuss and explore predictable daily patterns as well as the impact that size and distance have on what we see when we look at the sky.

Response to Intervention (RtI)

As per our District’s Response to Intervention Plan, students Interventionists and teachers assessed and benchmarked students in October.

The results of the screenings, along with other relevant school data, is being reviewed by the IMES RtI Team (principal, interventionists, and classroom teachers).

If your child meets KLSD eligibility criteria and qualifies for RtI services, you will receive a communication from your child’s teacher and/or Interventionist in early November

Advancing Literacy Family & Caregiver Workshops

This series will help support your children's literacy development outside of school. These workshops will provide you with essential tips, suggestions, and ideas for ways to work with your child outside of school to become powerful and life-long readers and writers. There will be offerings 1–2 times a month and will range in focus from grades PreK–8. They will discuss a variety of topics including spelling, punctuation, and grammar; essay writing; AI; ChatGPT; early literacy and reading; STEM; storytelling and oral language; social justice; and more. Click here for a list of all Family & Caregiver Workshop dates and topics throughout the year.

Upcoming Schedule (all sessions start at 7:30pm ET)

· November 1, 2023 - Essay Writing is an All-Important Genre in Upper-Elementary School and Middle School: Get to Know this Genre, and Get Tips for How to Help Kids Succeed as Essayists, Grades 3–8

· November 2, 2023 - What are Supportive, Reasonable, and Developmentally Appropriate Ways I Can Help My Child with Spelling, Punctuation, and Even Grammar, Grades K–3

· December 6, 2023 - Build and Grow Student Curiosity & Passions about the Natural World and History: Ways to Explore Books, Media, and Other Texts to Grow New Knowledge and Ideas, Grades 4–8

· December 7, 2023 - Build and Grow Student Curiosity & Passions about the Natural World and History: Ways to Explore Books, Media, and Other Texts to Grow New Knowledge and Ideas, Grades PreK–3

Not sure you can attend all sessions? Register below and the link is valid for every session all year. Click the link below to register.

Belonging at IMES

In October, at our K-2 and 3-5 Sharing Assemblies, we reminded students about the definition of belonging and talked about examples in their lives. Bringing students together at our school assemblies to share experiences and celebrate each other is just one way we create a sense of belonging at IMES.

Highlighting heritage months is also a way to promote belonging and inclusivity as we learn about different cultures. Filipino Heritage Month & Italian Heritage Month were highlighted by our Grade 5 students this month and we also showed a short video about Filipino Heritage Month. Our PTO invited Vincent Castellucci, a talented local musician who played beautiful Italian music on his many mandolins. The children were very impressed by the live music and enjoyed asking questions of our special performer!

Our learning bulletin boards continue to highlight heritage months, holidays, and leaders, both past and present to create a sense of belonging (thank you to our Compact Team and our PTO bulletin board team who support all this work!).

Finally, students from each class also received Eagle Eye Awards! Students who demonstrated Kind, Responsible, and Safe expectations were recognized and their group photos will be shared on our digital board! Thank you to Eddie the Eagle for celebrating our students with us. We cannot wait to celebrate more students at next month's assemblies.

November is Native American Heritage Month. We will learn about the contributions of our nation’s indigenous people and read the story of Thanksgiving from multiple perspectives.

Social Emotional Learning

In November, Morning Meeting will continue to be a part of our daily schedule to build relationships and support students social emotional skills and strategies.

Our K-5 classrooms will also enjoy reading our November common read, Thankful, by Elaine Vickers.

This wonderful story helps remind us about all we should be grateful for in our lives. Teachers will facilitate conversations about gratitude helping students recognize who and what enriches our lives and brings us joy each and everyday.


We look forward to launching our Green Teams at Increase Miller! Mrs. Emig, Mrs. Griffin, and Mrs. Burroughs will be scheduling their morning Green Team sessions with those who expressed interest!

To support the theme of gratitude in November, all our K-5 classrooms will be reading the book, Thank you, Earth: A Love Letter to our Planet. The beautiful illustrations and poetic structure remind us to be grateful to nature for all of its resources as we think about how we can take care of our world around us!

Veteran's Day

On November 9th, the middle school is hosting their 6th annual Veteran’s Day Celebration at 8:30 at the Middle School main entrance. They would like to extend the invitation to all of the families in the KLSD community.

Our K-5 students will learn about the federal holiday, Veteran's Day, in school, and that the purpose of the day is to thank and honor all those who served honorably in the military.

Thanksgiving Celebrations

Every November Increase Miller's 3rd graders read Balloons Over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of the Macy's Parade by Melissa Sweet. Then, they begin the process of conceptualizing and designing their very own balloon character to march in IMES's very own Thanksgiving Parade! The week before break, students come to the library to build (and sometimes re-build-- a few times!) their floats. Students love the creative process of designing and seeing their ideas come to life! They learn quickly that balloons are a fickle medium, and we even watch a blooper reel from the real Macy's parade to see how accidents can even happen to the professionals. They're so proud to march around the school and share the joy of their creations with the rest of the grade levels! This year, families of our 3rd grade students are invited to join us around the perimeter of the building to bring festive cheer to the parade route! If it rains, parents may watch in the cafeteria. Parade begins at 10:30 am and ends at 11 am!

Our Music Department will be leading our Grade 1 students during their Gratitude Performance scheduled for Friday, November 17 at 2:45 pm in the cafeteria. We are excited to see them on stage! We invite our students to wear fall colors for their special performance.

Safety Drills

We will continue to practice evacuation/fire and lockdown drills this month. Teachers will prepare students in advance for the drills. We will notify families each time we conduct a drill.

Change of Daily Dismissal Plan

Any change of your typical dismissal plan (either bus or pick-up) requires a written communication from a parent or guardian via our Change of Dismissal Form.

Please click on the link below to complete the form. The link is also posted on our IMES school website and will be included in each of our family communications.

Please note that the Change of Dismissal Form must be completed by 12PM on the day of the dismissal change to ensure the information is relayed and followed.

Change of Dismissal Form

Please complete this form by 12PM on the day of the requested dismissal change


We will honor individual playdates (riding a different bus) only if there is room on the bus. If the bus is over capacity, bus notes for playdates cannot be honored.

Please contact Eden Ladd in our main office 763-7117 or with any questions.


Parents are requested to call the school attendance line (763-7150) on the first day of each absence. If a child is absent and no call is made, the school will attempt to contact the parent. This is done for the safety and protection of the child.

Breakfast & Lunch Program

IMES students may purchase hot or cold lunch as well as snacks through an automated meal pay system. Please use the link below to view the lunch menus, manage your child's lunch account, and find out who to contact when you have questions.

Shout Outs!

Thank you to our PTO for supporting our school programs by scheduling enrichment programs and special guests like musician,Vincent Castellucci!

Thank you to our Class Parents for helping us plan for the school year!

Thank you to the Grade 5 Committee for a successful Pasta Night!

Thank you to our bus drivers for leading our School Bus Safety Program!

Thank you for the Goldens Bridge Fire Department for teaching us about fire safety!

Thank you to the PTO's Bulletin Board Teams for creating beautiful boards to welcome students.

Thank you to all our teachers and staff for continuing to create a sense of belonging and teach our students new concepts, skills, and strategies each and everyday!

Thank you to our students for demonstrating Kind, Responsible, and Safe behaviors!

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