Bird School News

October 2020

A Note from Principal Toepfer...

Hello Blue Jays,

We are all in this together. This statement has an even deeper meaning than it ever has before. We want to wish you now more than ever a most sincere thank you for your partnership in education for your student(s).

As we move through the school year, we are phasing in, in-person instruction, while closely monitoring the Public Health Madison and Dane County guidance. We began phase 2 of this process this past Monday by bringing in about 15% of our Kindergarten - 2nd graders for two hours, two times a week, for student support hubs. Our students that are invited for support hubs have had significant challenges or barriers to accessing Distance Learning for a wide variety of reasons. It feels amazing to have students in the building again while also implementing COVID infection mitigation guidelines.

Consistency is a significant challenge in the midst of a global pandemic. The Sun Prairie School District and schools are providing as much consistency as possible by committing to our model of teaching. Superintendent Dr. Saron communicated plans for Quarter 2, linked here if you would like to access it again. Due to these changes we will need your continued flexibility and grace. Small group times on Zoom may need to change multiple times as we shift with students coming into the building. When we move to K-2 hybrid we will need to adapt again. Flexibility and grace with one another must be our lead foot as we continue to navigate this pandemic together.

Sending love and strength to our families.

Yours in education,

Nicole Toepfer

CH BIrd Principal


Materials Pick Up Round 2

October 14th, 8:00 a.m. - 7:00p.m.

Drive to the pickup line on the side of the building and we will distribute materials (mostly books) for your learners. If you have books from our first materials pickup (like school library or classroom books) or any other materials to return, just place them in a disposable bag, clearly labeled with your child's name and teacher's name.

Like previous pickups, please place a sheet of paper on your passenger window with the student name and classroom teacher so that we can quickly grab the right bag for you.

Box tops: If you have any box tops, please place them in an envelope with the teacher's name on it.

Student Services Message

Social Emotional Learning Spotlight: Morning Meetings

Morning Meetings are a tool that Bird and all elementary schools in the district are using to build social emotional skills daily in our students. Spending 30 minutes greeting, sharing and doing a fun activity each morning might sound simple, but it's purpose is powerful:

  • Building relationships -- Knowing fellow students and staff well, sharing about ourselves and our interests, and playing together are key elements in building a learning community that feels safe and welcoming for all.
  • Practicing social skills -- This is a key time to practice turn-taking, listening with attention, focus, waiting patiently, empathy, losing gracefully and problem solving. In distance learning, it also gives students practice navigating the same technology they use in their small academic groups to make those times go more smoothly.
  • Meeting the needs students identified -- One that was reiterated again and again during our spring focus groups was the need to connect with teachers and peers in social ways. Students must feel like they belong and have fun and Morning Meetings meet both these needs.

Zoom Tips for Families

It is so wonderful to be able to connect with our students and families via Zoom and we know sometimes being on Zoom can also present new challenges. Here are a few tips for when your child is on Zoom:

  • Using headphones with a microphone can make sound much clearer for your student and the class/teacher and eliminate background noise for everyone.
  • Disconnecting other devices from the internet while students are on Zoom can boost the signal and make sound and video clearer for your student and the class/teacher.
  • Closing other tabs that are open in the browser can also help with clarity of the Zoom connection.
  • If you are still having challenges with sound, turning off video while talking can help make sound clearer when students are sharing.
  • Having the student work in the quietest area of the home can limit background noise.
  • Picking a secluded area, where the student has a wall as a background, also helps limit distractions and keeps your family life more private.
  • Taking a break from technology after Zoom or even just glancing away from the Zoom screen for several seconds can help rest your child's eyes and prepare their brains for the next learning task.
  • And a few more Zoom tips to consider to help your student's learning!

Attendance in Distance Learning

Attendance is taken Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

Attendance line information:

Phone: 608-834-7300 (press #1)

Vacation/illness/personal reasons, etc.

If your student will not be participating in any capacity for the day, please notify the attendance secretary with the reason for absence.


If your student has an appointment during school hours, but is still participating in distance learning (via Zoom, Seesaw, etc.) you do not need to call in the appointment.

If your student has an all day appointment and will not be engaging in distance learning that day, please notify the attendance secretary of that absence.

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The Dream Bus will be at Bird Every Monday, 4-6 p.m.

The Dream Bus bookmobile is a library on wheels that has been helping to expand library services throughout the community since April 2019. They will be visiting Bird School every Monday from 4-6 p.m. Families will be able to go onboard the bus to check out the books. Masks are required and only 3 people at a time.

Community Schools

What's Happening in Vandenberg!

The Y.M.C.A. is handing out snack packs and mystery bags for students. This is happening Monday - Friday, from 12:30 to 1:15.

Also, during this time, for the next five weeks, adults can get registered to vote and drop-off absentee ballots to the Madison City Clerk. Hurry up to register!

Every Thursday, from 12:30 to 1:30, the Dream Bus book mobile is here. Check out a book to read!

CH Best News

What is CH Best?

CH BEST is our school’s parent group or school community organization. CH Best stands for "CH BIRD Educational Support Team." This team is comprised of any parent/caregiver at the school who wishes to support the education of all children at CH BIRD. CH BEST has a Facebook page that provides regular updates on happenings at the school. Start following CH BEST at "C.H. Bird PTO/CH BEST" today to stay in the loop of activities and events!


CH BEST has monthly info sessions on the second Tuesday of each month starting at 6:30 p.m. These meetings always include Principal Toepfer, Associate Principal Witzling, and our school's assigned School Board Member, Bryn Horton so it is a great way to stay informed on school news and district happenings. This year the meetings will be held virtually on Zoom. Links to the meetings will go out on the CH BEST Facebook page and in an email to all parents/caregivers. If you have questions about CH Bird, ideas for an upcoming meeting discussion, or just would like to get connected to other parents/caregivers email President Tara Muszynski at or message the Facebook page.

MOOYAH C.H. BIRD SHARE NIGHT 10/12/2020 4-8:30 P.M.

Mention C.H. Bird when you order and a portion of your total cost will go back to our school. If you are able, come on out to MOOYAH and support C.H. Bird!


Every year we put together a student directory as a resource for families and classmates to connect with each other. This year, even more so than in the past, the C.H. Bird Student Directory will be an important resource as we virtually learn together and strive to help each other connect as a community!

Please take a moment and fill out our secure online form with your information. Please also remember that even if you’ve completed our directory form in past years, information does not carry over from previous years, so you’ll need to complete it again with this year’s class information.

The form will be open until 10/10/2020 and the directory will be shared shortly after!

Spirit Wear is Available - Order by 10/10!

EXCITING NEWS! Spirit Wear with our new Blue Jay is now available!! The sale goes through 10/10/2020 so get your order in soon! The turnaround is about 14 days to get the apparel.


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No student may be unlawfully discriminated against in any school programs, activities or in facilities usage because of the student’s sex (gender identity, gender expressions, and non-conformity to gender role stereotypes), color, religion, profession, or demonstration of belief or non-belief, race, national origin (including limited English proficiency), ancestry, creed, pregnancy, marital or parental status, homelessness status, sexual orientation, age, or physical, mental, emotional or learning disability. Harassment is a form of discrimination and shall not be tolerated in the District. It is the responsibility of administrators, staff members and all students to ensure that student discrimination or harassment does not occur.

(SPASD District Policy JB)

If a student or parent/guardian would prefer to have this information translated into Spanish, please contact us at 608-834-6620. Si un estudiante, padre ó guardian prefiere tener esta información traducida en Español, por favor contactenos en el 608-834-6620.

If a student or parent/guardian would prefer to have this information translated into Hmong, please contact us at 608-834-6630. Yog tus me nyuam lub xiv los yog niam thiab txiv/tus neeg muaj cai saib xyuas tus me nyuam xav tau qhov ntawv ntawm no ua lus Hmoob, thov hais rau peb paub rau ntawm 608-834-6630.


The Sun Prairie Area School District (“District”) does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of sex in any education program or activity that the District operates. Title IX’s requirement not to discriminate in any education program or activity extends to cover, but is not limited to, District students, certain admissions processes, and District employment. To access the relevant policy and procedures you can go to the District’s website. For inquiries regarding how Title IX and the federal Title IX regulations apply to the District please contact the District’s Title IX Coordinator, (the Director of Student Policy & School Operations, 501 S. Bird Street, Sun Prairie, WI 53590, 608-834-6624 or by email at

About us

CH Bird welcomes 350 students and their families in Kindergarten through Fifth Grade to our Community School in Sun Prairie! We believe in strengthening partnerships within our community to ensure positive outcomes for all students, while closing the achievement gap.