Madison Memo

January 2023

A Message from the Principal

Hello Madison Families!

We often think of the new year as a time for growth, opportunity, and goals. Here at Madison, we want to continue that journey and make even greater growth in the second half of the year. A strong partnership between home and school is critical to reaching these goals. How can you help at home?


Children thrive on routine. A consistent schedule coupled with high expectations at home can make a world of difference when it comes to academics and behavior at school. I know when I don’t get enough sleep, my entire world feels off. This is even greater for children.


Do you know that reading with your children each day can exponentially grow their love for reading and willingness to put forth effort at school? Twenty minutes of daily reading at home is all it takes to see growth and create a passion for reading. Furthermore, playing family games together can grow their love for math! Some favorites for this age include UNO, Phase 10, Monopoly, Checkers, and Memory.


Children get excited when we get excited. Asking your child questions such as “What was the best part of your day?” “Tell me one thing you learned today.” and “What is one kind thing you saw happen today?” shows your interest in school and shows your child that you care about what’s going on. Not only will you get the ‘inside scoop’ but you’ll also grow your home/school connection.


Studies show that too much screen time for our kids can be harmful. However, as a parent myself, I understand that screen time is sometimes the only option. With that said, it’s extremely helpful to monitor what students are engaging with. Paying close attention to the video games, television shows, and YouTube videos your child is consuming can go a long way in keeping them safe and healthy.


The staff here at Madison has the same common goal as you do - the success of your child. We strive to have open communication and to meet the needs of individual students. Please reach out with your questions, concerns, and feedback. We love hearing from you!

Upcoming Dates

  • Monday, January 9th - PTO Meeting at 5:30pm in the library
  • Monday, January 16th - No school for students or staff
  • Tuesday, January 17th - No school for students; Staff Records Day
  • Wednesday, January 18th - No school for students; Staff Development Day

The Counselor Corner - The Winter Blues

Fun Ideas to Avoid the Winter Blues

Winter can sometimes feel long with the cold and snow but here are some ideas you can do with your family to avoid the winter blues. Studies have shown that bonding with others helps to increase happiness hormones.

  1. Check out the public library. They have many fun events for free!

  2. Stay active: Go on a hike, try ice skating, make a snow angel, or go sledding.

  3. Escape indoors: Find a local indoor pool, go to a movie, find a roller-skating rink, or go bowling.

  4. Get cozy at home: Make a meal together, make your own movie night, have a picnic inside, complete a puzzle together.

  5. Give your time: Volunteer at a local homeless shelter, cook a meal for a friend in need, make some cards for a family member.

When is it more than winter blues?

Know the signs when it is more than winter blues and may be more like depression.

Big picture

The Reading Corner

Hello Cougar Families and Happy New Year!

Last month in our reading newsletter, I introduced you to a type of text that is great to use with beginning readers and readers working on mastering the application of their phonics skills. The books referenced in last month’s newsletter were called decodables! In this month’s article we will look at how decodable books differ from predictable text.

The information below is taken from the following source:

Please click the link to learn even more!

Decodable Vs. Predictable Text

Decodable texts are different from predictable or repetitive texts. Predictable texts are early books that contain repetitive words and sentences. Predictable texts have their foundations in the three cueing systems model of reading. The three cueing model has significant disadvantages for weak or at risk readers.

Predictable texts have been designed so that beginning readers have to rely heavily on contextual guessing to read many of the words that are on the page. They contain more complex words with grapheme–phoneme correspondences that the students have not been taught.

Watch: What’s wrong with predictable or repetitive texts?

Speech and language pathologist Alison Clarke explains the problems with repetitive text and how they compare to decodable texts. To adults, predictable texts look very simple, but let’s take a look at them from a child’s perspective. (From Spelfabet)

Click the link below!

What's wrong with predictable or repetitive texts

Next month I will provide more information about selecting quality decodable books to help support your beginning reader.

Happy Reading!

Mrs. Meerdink

Nursing News

Please click this link to view January's 'Nursing News'.

PTO News

  • Monday, January 9th, PTO meeting at 5:30pm in the library
  • Friday, January 20th, Snowball Dance 6:00pm-8:00pm. We are still looking for volunteers to assist with monitoring the snack and refreshments table. Please email if interested!
Big picture