The Woodchuck Word

A Greenwood Elementary Monthly Parent Newsletter

November 1, 2022

Dear Greenwood Families,

Thank you so much for your engagement these first nine weeks of school! Monday marks the end of our first quarter, and our students are well on their way to mastering the skills of their grade level. Thank you for your participation in our Fall Parent-Teacher Conferences. We had nearly 95% of our families attend to hear about the growth and success students have made so far this year. Please don't hesitate to check in on your child's progress at any point throughout the year with their classroom teacher. They are happy to share updated progress on specific skills or assessments or provide ideas for ways to support your child on skills at home.

October has been a month of so many exciting things! Thanks to generous contributions from our families and surrounding community, we were able to close out our funding for the track and complete construction. Our new track is accessible to all of our students and opened to the public on weeknights after 5:30 and on the weekends. It is one-tenth of a mile, and has provided lots of fun not only during recess, but also for our students participating in Joggers and Girls on the Run. Thank you so much for helping to make that possible! We plan to do a Fun Run/Dedication Ceremony in May, so more details will be shared about that in the Spring after we work out logistics.

I want to extend a heartfelt thank you to our Greenwood Families for working together to help each other out. Earlier this month, I put out a message asking for support with carpools and had an amazing response. I am so grateful that we all work together to ensure that our students get to be in school each day, have what they need to be successful, and feel loved and cared for. As I tell our staff, it takes a village to support each child, and I am so fortunate that you are all a part of our Greenwood Family.

As we move to November and the month of giving thanks, I have so many things to be thankful for. Thank you for your continued support, thank you for your transparency, thank you for your flexibility, and thank you for your grace. I am so grateful to get to serve our students, staff and all of you.

With gratitude,

Jenny Inman


Friendly Reminders

WATER BOTTLES: If your child has a water bottle, please have them bring it to school daily. Students can use the bottle filling stations to fill up their bottles and keep them at their seats for drinks as they need them. At this time, the drinking fountains aren't accessible.

LEAVING EARLY: Please avoid picking up your child early from school between 2:20pm and the end of the day if at all possible. In addition to parent pick-up traffic, students are finishing up their learning and preparing for dismissal, so it can take extra time to get them signed out.

PARENT PICK-UP/DROP OFF: Please continue to pull all the way up before dropping off or picking up your student. We try to get students in and out of cars as quickly as possible, but it works most efficiently when we can get as many cars curbside as possible. We know your time is valuable, so if you could help us with this small part of the process, we will make sure to get you all on your way. If you would like to get out of your car to meet your child, visit with the teacher, etc, please park in a designated parking to do so. Thank you:)

2nd-5th Grade Field Trip Information for November 3

We look forward to our 2nd-5th grade Field Trip to the Wild About Education Iowa Wild hockey game on Thursday, November 3. We will leave the building at 9:45am and return at around 1:00pm. If you selected a disposable sack lunch for your child, please send them with that on this day. It will need to be disposable, as we will not have storage with us on the trip, and don't want to risk leaving anything behind at the arena. Students who ordered a school sack lunch with get that as they board the bus.

Fall Picture Retake Information

Lifetouch Photography will be in the building for fall picture retakes on Friday, November 4th. If your student was absent on our original picture day, they will have their picture taken at this time. Additionally, if you would like your child to have their picture retaken, please let your child's teacher know so that we can have those done. You can order student pictures on with the Picture Day ID: EVT6KH3R2

EL Literacy Parent Letters on SchoolCNXT

If your child is in Kindergarten, First, or Second Grade, you may have noticed a SNAP!Connect post detailing information on the literacy units/modules your children are working on in class. These letters are sent out by our district and provide information about the content of the unit and ways you can help support your child at home. Students spend a time practicing their reading rate (fluency) with Decodable Readers during their literacy daily. Your child will be bringing home decodable passages each week. These are for the student to keep at home. Please encourage your child to practice the passage daily for additional fluency practice.

Artsonia: A Digital Platform to View and Share Your Child's Artwork

Mrs. Moll has already uploaded over 1,000 student artwork pieces into the Artsonia digital platform. If you are interested in signing up for a free account to preview your child's work, please click HERE.

Volunteering At Greenwood

We look forward to our family and community partnerships this year! If you or someone you know is interested in volunteering at Greenwood, please visit this link for more information and to complete the Online Volunteer Application. We would love volunteers to assist with library inventory, reading with students, practicing sight words and flashcards, mentoring, assisting on field trips, chaperoning class celebrations, etc. Please note it is now taking three to five weeks for applications and background checks to process, so allow yourself plenty of time for the approval to go through.

Your volunteer application status is valid for one year, so if you completed the application process last year and want to check on when it would need to be renewed, please let us know.

SCHOOLCNXT: Using the Direct Messaging Feature

Classroom Teachers have started sending home classroom news and reminders via the SchoolCNXT App. If you haven't logged into SchoolCNXT lately, now would be a great time to check it out.

Did you know you can direct message your child's teacher and fellow Greenwood parents?

Please reference the attached directions for how to access this feature. It is a great way to send your child's teacher any updates about absences, appointments, or to follow up on something. It is also a great way to connect with other families to arrange for playdates, send birthday invitations, etc.

If you aren't connected to SchoolCNXT, you can download the app in the Apple or Android store for free, or access it via the web at If you don't already have an account, you should have received a text or e-mail with a code to sign-up and link to your child's classroom. If you deleted the message or missed it, I will be sending out weekly invites for the next to weeks as we work to get families connected.

If you've created an account in past years, but don't recall your username, please e-mail and I will help get you connected. Additionally, if you've forgotten your password, but know your username, you can click on the FORGOT PASSWORD link on the sign-on page to reset it.

PTA News & Updates


The student favorite Penny Wars is back after a mutli-year hiatus! Penny Wars begins on Wednesday, November 9 and ends Monday, November 21st. The class with the highest point balance at the end will win a class pizza party. The grade level will the highest coin balance will win a special snack.

Here is how to play:

Students collect change from home and bring it to school, collecting it in their classroom and then depositing it into their class container in the office. For each penny brought in, they earn a point for their class. Silver coins are placed into other classroom containers to take away points from their total i.e. nickels subtract 5 points, dimes subtract 10, and quarters subtract 25 points.

Ex. Student A in Mrs. Motter's class brings in two quarters and places them in Mrs. Iles container to deduct 50 points from their total.

*At this time, only coins will be accepted, there may be a twist on the last day of the event.

Dough Co. Pizza Night

Greenwood PTA has partnered with locally owned Dough Co. to give you a break from cooking following the Thanksgiving holiday. Mention Greenwood when you order dine-in or carry out from Dough Co. on Monday, Nov. 28th and 20% of sales will be donated back to the Greenwood PTA. (Delivery is not included).

Greenwood in the News

A Special Ride to School for Fire Poster Winners

Greenwood students designed fire safety posters in September for the Des Moines Fire Department Fire Prevention poster contest. Out of 250 entries, seven Greenwood students took home top honors with their poster designs and messaging. Two of our students, Lilly Schoen and Vivenne Quijano won the grand prize for their grade level and got to ride in a fire truck to school. Several of our students' posters will be featured on billboards throughout the city to remind students to

Check out the full story HERE

Drake Bulldog Mascot Visits Greenwood

Friday morning a bulldog dressed as a rainbow fish walked into a library full of woodchucks. Imaginations were running wild at Greenwood Elementary School as Drake University's Associate Director of Marketing, Erin Bell, and Griff read The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister to a group of young learners in the library. Greenwood was just one of the eight DMPS elementary schools on the visiting list for the bulldog tour. After the reading, each student had a chance to pet Griff on the way to their next class. Check out the photos HERE



To access the district calendar, click HERE.

School hours are 7:45am-2:40pm Monday through Friday.

Nov. 7 & Nov. 8: No School- Fall Break

Nov. 23-25: No School: Thanksgiving Break

Dec. 9: No School: Staff Professional Development

Dec. 22-January 3: No School-Winter Break


School Breakfast and Lunch is offered daily to all students free of charge.
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