The Patriot Parent Newsletter

September 2021, Brooklyn Park Elementary School

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A Message from Mr. Walker

Dear BPES Community,

Welcome to the 2021-2022 School Year. It has been a pleasure meeting you and working with our kids the past two days. This year will have its challenges, but we will work through our challenges together. Please read below:

New Patriots to our Family

Rachael Huston-K

Evan Perry-3rd Grade

Madysen Ducus - 4th Grade

Ashley Richmond-5th Grade

Catherine Perini-Cline-Special Education

Alexandra DeGraw-Special Education

Christa Makadia-ELL

Kim Brooks-Reading

Jackelyn Gordon-SIST

Julie Taylor-SIST

Kelly Nolan -Media

Julia Taddeo-Arts and Humanities

Dana DePaul-Right Start

Erika Mathew-Speech Pathologist

Pamela Watkins-PPW

Denise Waxmonsky-OT

Samantha Parson-Literacy

Baylee Hutchinson-Intern

Alison Cruz Ramos-Intern

Kerri Fleck-Intern

Hope Jaslow-Cafeteria

Face Masks

Face masks are required for all visitors and students. Students cannot wear face/neck gaiters, we have extra masks if your child needs a mask. Students can remove their masks at lunch and recess.


Students are eligible to receive free breakfast at arrival and free lunch. Please contact the cafeteria staff if your child has any dietary restrictions.


Homework information will be provided by the classroom teachers next week.

Back to School Night

Back to School Night will be on September 14th from 5:00-6:30. The schedule is below:

- Last Name A-L 5:00-5:35

- Transition 5:35-5:45

- Last Name M-Z 5:45-6:25

- There will also be a recorded/virtual option. Teachers will provide information on Monday.

Cell Phones

Our cell phones have become an essential part of our lives. For me, it's my school bag, lunch, car keys, tea, and my cell phone before I leave the house. I'm sure you feel the same and our kids also rely on their cell phones. We respect each family's decision for having a cell phone, but we are asking that cell phones are turned off and remain in the student's pocket or locker.

Arrival and Dismissal

During arrival and dismissal, we are asking parents to remain behind the two "kiss and goodbye" signs. Second, there is no parking in the bus loop before 9:00 am and after 2:45 pm. Third, there is no parking in front of the bus loop from 8:00 am-4:00 pm. Please know that your child's safety is my first priority.

We are going to have an amazing school year, please reach out if you have questions.

E. Rodney Walker


Brooklyn Park Elementary

Parent Resources

Information about the school year, a letter from AACPS-

Information about vaping-

Classroom News!


We are so excited to welcome our youngest students to Brooklyn Park Elementary! This month, our theme is "Myself as a Learner". We will learn all about what happens at school, how we learn and get along at school, and what makes a good friend. We will be spending significant time learning our classroom and schools procedures, rules, and routines. Our students will spend time learning our schedule, building stamina to work independently, and learning our routines for math and literacy centers. By the end of the month, we will begin small group instruction to meet your child's individual needs through differentiated instruction. We can't wait to learn all about our Pre-K friends! Please remember to check your child's folder daily, there will be many important notes coming home this month. Thank you for support!

Pre-K Team


Hi kindergarten loved ones! We cannot believe that the school year is already here, but the kindergarten team is more than ready to welcome your children into BPES! To start off the year, each family will have the opportunity to meet their kindergartener’s teacher at a conference together. Then, students will come into school in small groups on our staggered entrance days. Once our whole class is together, we are excited to officially start on our kindergarten journey! During literacy times, we will begin with working on name recognition, identifying rhymes and how to hold writing utensils correctly. In math, we will be working with numbers through 10. Finally, in science and social studies we are exploring what makes us unique and our five senses. We are looking forward to meeting your children and excited for what the year has in store for us!!

First Grade

Welcome back to school! We are so excited to start the year off in the classroom. This month we will be getting to know one another and learning our new first grade routines. We will begin learning about Monarch butterflies very soon and raising our own caterpillars! In math we will start working on addition and subtraction within 20, and in reading and writing we will begin learning our reading strategies and working on tapping out sounds to read and write one or two syllable words. Homework will begin soon, and it will be due each Monday. Keep a look out for your child's homework notebook and check their take home folders each day.

Second Grade

The second-grade teachers are excited to be in the building with our students! We will be focusing on learning the school and grade level routines and expectations. We will begin working on addition and subtraction within 100, as well as working with our doubles facts. Please practice at home with your child to help build their understanding of numbers and how they work together. Please make sure your child is reading every night. It is very important to practice the reading and phonics skills learned in class. Please reach out to your child's teacher if you have not been able to connect to them through Class Dojo. As always thank you for your support at home, we are a family at BPES and we all are going to do great things this year!

Third Grade

Welcome to Third Grade!

Reading is the foundation for everything we do! This year in third grade we will nurture your child’s love of reading through engaging texts and real-life connections. In the month of September, students will be listening to and reading a variety of texts that have a common theme of Communication. We will focus on retelling to determine the central message, describing characters, and determining the meaning of unknown words. Please encourage your child to read every day for at least 20 minutes and ask them to retell what they have read. Some questions you can ask your child are the following:

What important events happened in the story?

How does the character feel in the story?

What lesson do you think the character learned in the story?

What is the genre of the book you read? How do you know?

Give an example of descriptive language the writer used to show you how the character feels.

What does the writer do to keep you interested?

In Writing third graders will learn and practice effective Narrative writing skills and strategies that will build their capacity to become life-long writers. Direct and honest feedback will be provided either one-on-one or in small groups to support each writer's individual growth. Students will focus on content and CUPS: capitalization, usage, punctuation, and spelling.

Math: We are excited to start the school year in-person and have students get their hands on math tools again as they begin to make real world connections to solve math problems. This year we will engage in activities to support a positive math culture. In the month of September, we will focus on the ritual, routines and learning the structure of our math block. We will explore even and odd numbers as well as using arrays to add. Using arrays will help build the foundation for understanding the concept of multiplication and division. We are excited to see our mathematicians in action!

Science is a time for students to express their curiosity and develop their critical thinking and reasoning skills. We are ready for students to interact with objects and materials as we investigate and discover the world around us. Throughout September, your scientists will engage in a variety of activities as we study forces and motion. Get ready to hear about all your scientists learn!

This month in Social Studies we will help students build their sense of civic duty as we explore our communities beyond our school. We’ll analyze our environment through geographic, economic, and historic lenses to understand our impact on the world around us and how we can work together to meet the needs of our communities. This is all crafted to help students take informed action to develop their civic identity and voice.

Fourth Grade

Language Arts - We will go back to 'normal' for our language arts block which consists of Explicit Comprehension, Interactive Read Aloud, Guided Reading and Writers Workshop. Each of those blocks will be explained during Back to School Night. (No worries, if work prevents you from attending I will record and put the link on the website). Students will be back to using pencil and paper (as well as their Chromebook- so yes as of right now it needs to come to school)

Math - Please make sure that they are practicing their facts DAILY. They will need to be fluent

in their addition/subtraction/multiplication/division facts in order to be successful. We will be working on these starting day one. Unit 1 of Math will consist of building a positive math culture and getting ourselves back to normal. We will be covering multiples and factors, place value, comparing numbers and rounding, adding/subtracting and multiplying and dividing.

Social Studies- We will begin by establishing our classroom community and emphasis how this is a community and family. Our beginning unit will be called "Worlds Collide". We will take a look at what happened when cultures collided, exploration caused things to change and how communities and worlds have changed over time due to exploration. We will talk about why people explore and what happened over time.

Science - We are getting back into hands-on science. I want my students to understand that science can be fun, engaging and exciting. Our first unit will consist of talking about the structures are needed in plants and animals for survival and how humans can learn from them.

Social and Emotional Learning Topic- We really are going to be working hard this month getting back into the swing of things. There is going to be a huge adjustment period for everyone. Keep in mind that they are going to be tired because everything is changing and it has been a long time since we have been back like 'normal'. Keep me in the loop if there is anything going on and they are having trouble- I am here to support them and your family! We are going to get through all of this together.

Welcome back to school and welcome to 4th grade!!

Ms. Nauman

Ms. Dacus

Mr. Sheehan

Fifth Grade

The fifth-grade team is very excited to start the new year! We are looking forward to having the kids back in the classroom this year and developing relationships. As students are returning to the building, we would like to reestablish routines and expectations in the classroom and around the school building. As a reminder, chrome books should come to school charged so they can be used daily. We have a field trip in November and we will need chaperones to help out. Stay tuned for more information on this in the coming weeks.

Tracy Burke, P.E.

I am so excited to have students back in the gym for physical education class this year! Our lessons will have a few new safety procedures, but students will be able to participate in our traditional PE activities and utilize PE equipment just like in previous years. Please ensure your student's success in PE class by reminding them to wear their sneakers and clothing appropriate for activity on days they have PE class. They may also bring their water bottle to class, so please make sure it has their name on it. Please click on the link below to access the PE schedule for this year. You will notice that 5th grade has 1-hour PE block once a week, while Pre-K-4th grade students have two 30-minute PE blocks.

PE Schedule:

Rachel Israel, Instrumental Music

Welcome back music families!

Band and Strings is back in-person and I am so excited to make music with your kids again! Sign-ups for Band and Strings is now open. Register on my website at

Remember that 3rd graders may sign up for *strings only* and 4th/5th graders have their choice of both Band or Strings. If you have any questions about instrumental music class, please do not hesitate to contact me at

Kelly Nolan, Library Media Specialist

Hello parents and students, I am so excited to begin my first year teaching with this fabulous community! I'm happy to announce that the library will be open and available for in-person checkout and instruction. The News Club will also once again be open to interested fifth graders who would love to do live morning announcements. More information will be provided during students' first day. I look forward to meeting you all soon!

Megan Fitzmaurice, Visual Arts Teacher

Hi everyone! I am so excited to be able to teach you IN the art room this year! This year, I hope to bring many new materials into the classroom that we were unable to work with last year. Let’s get messy and have some fun! I can’t wait to create art with all of you, and see your faces IN PERSON!

Laura E. Wells, LCSW-C Facts about Attendance

A student should miss no more than nine days of school each year.

Poor attendance is a problem in all grades from K-high school.

By 6th grade poor attendance is one of the 3 major signs that a student may not graduate from high school.

Good attendance helps your child stay on target with daily assignments, homework, taking tests on time, and maintaining good grades.

Good attendance in the primary years (prek-2nd) helps your child learn the basic skills such as reading, math, and friendship skills to succeed when classes get more intense.

Good attendance helps your child maintain a good routine and expected behaviors. Students understand your expectation that school is very important.

Making school a priority by preparing for school the night before demonstrates to them, you are going to help them be ready for the day- back pack is ready to go, school clothes are out for the morning, homework has been checked, and all papers have been signed.

Make school a priority by ensuring your child gets plenty of sleep (limit screen time).

Make sure transportation issues are resolved the night before school.

Make school a priority by not allowing your child to arrive to school late or tardy. Walking into class late can be embarrassing and disturb ongoing instruction in the classroom.

Make school a priority by not allowing your child to stay home from school unless they are truly sick. Children learn to use this excuse to miss school.

Help your child by maintaining good routine, such as waking up on time (alarm clock), getting dressed, brushing teeth and having breakfast, and monitoring their time to ensure being ready to leave the house on time

Set an example for your child- YOU are their best role model.