Elm Street School

January 2016

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Principal's Message

Happy new year! It is truly a joy to be back at school with students and staff. Students returned ready to learn and contribute. We all adjusted easily to familiar routines and structures.

The month of January is one of new beginnings and quiet reflection. We look forward to remembering and celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a most influential and spirited human being. At school, we learn about the history and the impact that it has on our lives today. We talk about dreams, character, integrity, thinking of others, and taking action to make a positive difference in our own lives and the lives of others. These are values we highlight and celebrate every day throughout the year. One of Dr. King's many quotes that resonates with me is: "The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character- that is the goal of true education." Like reading, writing, and math skills, we need to practice these values and critical thinking skills each and every day. It is through personal connections with our children as well as demonstrating and calling attention to acts of compassion and caring that we develop these skills.

So during this month and the year ahead, please join me in taking time to celebrate acts of kindness and bravery, no matter how small.

"Life's most persistent and urgent question is, what are you doing for others?" -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Rebecca Brogadir


Cold Weather Gear and Outdoor Play

  • Wear winter weather clothing/gear to school: jacket, hat, gloves, scarves and boots. Students may bring snowpants/boots in a separate bag.
  • Label all clothing with student initials or names, including lunch boxes. While we maintain a lost and found, unclaimed items are eventually donated.
  • Weather permitting, students may only go in the snow at recess time with snowpants, boots and appropriate winter gear. Otherwise, recess play will be on the hardtop.
  • Per district policy, if the weather is 20 degrees or below, including windchill and/or the grounds are determined unsafe for outdoor play (such as due to ice), recess will be held indoors. Our goal is to have students play outside as much as possible.

School Policy: Electronic Devices

Please note the following Walpole Public Schools elementary school policy: Students may not use cellular phones or other electronic devices during the day. If students need to have one of the above devices for an out of school purpose, the device must be kept turned off and remain in the backpack. If a student is found to have an electronic device in his or her possession, outside of the backpack, it will be kept in the office until a parent is able to pick it up.

Parent Teacher Conferences

We are eager to communicate regularly and proactively. While we hope conversations are ongoing between teachers and parents, we also set aside time each year for Parent Teacher conferences which are scheduled to take place on Wednesday evening, February 10 and Friday afternoon, February 12. These midyear check ins are a great opportunity to connect briefly face to face with your child(ren)'s teacher(s). Please stay tuned to an email alerting you that the sign ups are available and/or check our website.

Kindergarten Registration

It is time to register your child for kindergarten. Children who are five years old before September 1, 2016, are eligible to come to kindergarten in September. Elm Street School will be conducting registration from January 19, 2016 – January 22, 2016 from 9:30-2:30 PM. Registration packets will be mailed on January 7, 2016 to age eligible children who are on the 2015 town census. If you do not receive a packet in the mail by Monday, January 11th, please call the Elm Street School office to request one.

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Save the Dates:

  • Thursday, January 7: ACCESS for ELL Testing Window begins
  • Sunday, January 10: Providence Bruins vs. Springfield Falcons PAC event, 3:05pm
  • Monday, January 11: Walpole Drug Coalition Meeting, WHS Media Center; 10:00am
  • Wednesday, January 13: Title I Parent & Child Workshop at Boyden Elementary School
  • Friday, January 15: No School- Professional Development Day
  • Monday, January 18: No School- Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Tuesday, January 19: PAC Meeting, 7:30pm
Public Budget Hearing at WHS; 7:30pm

Kindergarten Registration January 19th - 22nd 9:30 - 2:30

  • Thursday, January 21: 5th Grade Celebration Planning Meeting at Finnegan's Wake; 7:00pm
Public Budget Hearing at WHS; 7:30pm
  • Friday, January 22: Spirit Day-- Color Day (Kindergarten- Red; 1st Grade- Blue; 2nd Grade- Purple; 3rd Grade- Green; 4th Grade- Orange; 5th Grade-Pink)
  • Wednesday, January 27: School Council; 3:45pm-4:45pm
  • Monday, February 1: Teachers Are Souper Day
  • Monday, February 8- Friday, February 12- Box Tops Snowball Fight
  • Tuesday, February 9: Kindergarten Report Cards go home in backpacks
  • Wednesday, February 10: Parent Teacher Conferences, 6:00pm-8:00pm
  • Friday, February 12: Early Release at 12:20pm- Parent/ Teacher Conferences
  • Sunday, February 14: Happy Valentine's Day
  • Monday, February 15- Friday, February 19- February Vacation
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Nurse's Notes

Please be sure that your child dresses for the cold weather… hats, coats, mittens, and boots when needed. We go outside everyday! Students should also be wearing their coats to and from the car or bus. Many report that it is in their backpack.

Also, please remember the rules about attendance. Please keep your child at home if he or she has a persistently runny nose, a harsh cough, unusual rash or a fever. (The child should be fever-free without medication for 24 hours.) Also, if your child has strep throat, conjunctivitis, or impetigo, they must be on antibiotics for 24 hours before they return.

Thank you for your cooperation. We wish everyone a healthy winter season.

~Mrs. Newman

Learning at Elm Street School

Battle of the Books

On December 18, 140 students in grades 3-5 participated in an amazing day where they worked as teams to share their literary knowledge.... A total of 693 books were read between October and December. Thanks to Mrs. Cantrell and Mrs. Moses for their dedication of time and energy to make this growing event a huge success.

Winter Poetry

To celebrate the season, the students in Mrs. Drew's and Mrs. Cantrell’s class each chose a winter themed poem to memorize and recite for a room full of family and friends. As always, the students did an amazing job and really impressed the audience with their composure and confidence. To accompany their presentations, the students each illustrated beautiful pictures which were displayed within a slideshow. The program concluded with a whole-class recitation of the classic “The Night Before Christmas”, which also included student artwork.

New Music Instrument

Thank you to Walpole Friends of Music!

Mrs. Saripalli's grant request to fund new instruments for the four elementary schools was accepted. Elm Street School now has a new bass metallophone for students to expand their musical learning.

Kindergarten students are continuing to learn more about BEAT in music and have been practicing High and Low sounds with their singing voices.

Grades 1 & 2 are working on new songs and games and learning about how music is written using notes and rests. Reading rhythm and melody patterns and playing them on drums and xylophones will a fun activity this term.

Grade 3 students have begun learning to play the recorder. We have talked about “how to practice” and have been given a Practice Chart to fill in each week which they need to have checked. They will be testing to earn their first Recorder Karate belt next week. You can learn more about our Recorder Karate program on the Recorder Page of my website.

Grades 4 & 5 are continuing to learn new songs and vocal skills and have been exploring percussion instruments and reading rhythms. They will soon be composing their own songs!

Mrs. Saripalli is pleased to announce that one of our 4th Grade students, Madison D., has been selected to sing in the 2016 Massachusetts All-State Treble Chorus. Students in Grades 4-6 are chosen from all over the state based on their audition scores. We are excited to have Madison be the first student from Elm Street to be invited to participate in this group. They will be performing in concert this March in Boston. Congratulations, Madison!!

Music Lessons

Did you know that WPS offers music lessons for students in grades 4-12?

The WPS Private Lesson Program Spring Registration is now open!

Click here to learn more: Private Music Lessons 2016

Dedham Savings Bank Holiday Card Contest Winners

Dedham Savings Bank recognized several Walpole Public Schools elementary students for their holiday card creations. Dedham Savings Bank graciously contributes to our schools with generous donations and ongoing support. Students from all elementary schools are pictured below. Congratulations to the following students from Elm Street School:

Aaron A. - Grade 1

Courtney O. - Grade 1

Will F. - Grade 2

Sam M. - Grade 3

Akshaya M. - Grade 3

Alise S. - Grade 4

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Thank you to our volunteers!

We are so lucky to have many outstanding volunteers helping Elm Street School from morning to evening. Many thanks to the volunteers who hosted winter celebrations and crafts throughout the school, served as docents teaching about art in classes, got our students active through BOKS and the Running Club, assisted in the media center, and ran the Battle of the Books.
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Elm Street School Parent Advisory Council (PAC)

The Elm Street School PAC supports the school in innumerable ways. In addition to many fun family events like the Ice Cream Social and the Hoedown, the PAC provides financial support for student activities, improves our playground activities and equipment, and brings in phenomenal enrichment programs. The PAC is hard at work and is always seeking more involvement. If you are interested in becoming more involved and/or want to receive the PAC's email announcements, go to: http://www.elmstreetpac.org/contact/subscribe/


Bingo Fun for Everyone

Wednesday, Jan. 27th, 6:30pm

415 Elm Street

Walpole, MA

This event is $2.00 per person and a $10 max per family. The evening is from 6:30-8:00 pm in the Elm Street School Cafeteria. This is a family event for all grade levels that offers families time to come and enjoy a night out playing Bingo.


Snacks will be available for purchase.

Parent volunteers are needed for setup/cleanup, admissions, snack bar, and floaters.


Tickets must be ordered by Tuesday, January 25th.

Join your classmates, teachers, family, and friends for a night of fun at Fenway Park! Come watch David Ortiz one last time as he plays his final season in a Red Sox uniform. Ticket Cost: Bleacher - $28

Click here for the order form.

Questions: Contact Heather Feener – hacurley@yahoo.com



It is time to match wits with your friends and neighbors....

Please join us for Elm Street School’s Trivia Night!! Enjoy a really fun night out with friends while raising money for Elm Street’s 5th grade celebration! Please save the date and plan on joining us!!

Prizes will be awarded to the winning team.

WHEN: Saturday, February 27, 2016

TIME: 7:00 PM (Trivia begins at 8:00 sharp!)

WHERE: Finnegan’s Wake (cash bar & limited menu)

1034 East Street, Walpole

COST: $20/person (tables of 10)

Sign up on the PAC website at:


For additional information please contact Gail Ofgant at gofgant@gmail.com or Andrea Grogan at agrogan@blessedsacrament.org.