Grafton Gazette

May/ June 2019

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A message from the Principal

Dear Families,

It is hard to believe that the school year is drawing to a close. We have had a wonderful year and have enjoyed watching your children learn and grow. We are excited to see what the next chapter holds for our K through fourth grade students and we wish our fifth graders the best of luck as they head to middle school. As the end of the school year draws near, please be reminded that summer break will be shorter than usual with school resuming on Monday, August 12th.

With summer approaching, we are already receiving questions about class placement for next year. As has been done in the past, we will be sending home a parent input sheet to help us consider important factors when placing each student. Please take time to complete this important form. I carefully read each one and assure you that it does make an impact in our class placement decisions. We work very hard to consider performance data, teaching and learning styles, and input from various sources when making class lists. As always, please remember that we are unable to honor requests for specific teachers. These forms will be sent home in mid-May and are due by June 14th for consideration. Thank you in advance for your valuable input.

As the weather gets warmer, we know that sports and activities increase for our students. We also notice that this results in an increase in office pick-ups. Please be reminded that if you are planning on picking up your child early you must notify the office by 3:00. Also know that after 3:30, any pick-ups will be added to the call list which are dismissed following the first round of buses. You may also consider having your child added to the temporary car rider list where they can be picked up via the side entrance through the car rider line. We respectfully request that you only pick up your child through the office at dismissal as a last resort. During dismissal, the office staff is tasked with answering phones, responding to requests on the radios, tracking buses, etc. As the office becomes crowded, it can be difficult to hear and manage all of these tasks and we want to ensure that all students are safely routed home. Thank you in advance for your consideration of this request.

Recently, Grafton Village began Kindergarten registration for the 2019-2020 school year. If you or any of your friends or neighbors need to register a kindergartner, now is a great time to stop by our office and begin this process. Please be sure to bring your child’s state issued birth certificate, social security card, and proof of residency. Because our hiring of new teachers is based on the number of students enrolled, everyone is encouraged to register as early as possible!

With best wishes for a safe and relaxing summer,

Michael B. Sidebotham



5/1 Bus Evacuation Drill

PALS Testing

5/2 PALS Testing

Superhero Math Assembly

SOL Math Prep 4:00- 4:45 pm

5/3 Colonial Day

PTA Bingo Night

PALS Testing

Girl Scouts 4:00- 5:00 pm

5/6 Teacher Appreciation Week

PALS Testing

5/7 PALS Testing

4th Grade Field Trip to Chatham/ Battlefield

5/8 PALS Testing

Lunch provided for staff by PTA

Chick Fil A Spirit Night 5:00- 8:00 pm

5/9 PALS Testing

Interim Reports

KG Screening 9:00- 3:30 pm

5/10 PALS Testing

Field Day

Girl Scouts 4:00- 5:00 pm

5/13 PALS Testing

SOL 3rd Reading Part 1

5/14 PALS Testing

SOL 3rd Reading Part 2

5/15 PALS Testing

SOL 4th Reading

5/16 PALS Testing

SOL 5th Reading

KG Screening 9:00- 3:30 pm

PTA Digital Families Community 6:00- 7:30 pm

5/17 PALS Testing

SOL Testing Window

Girl Scouts 4:00- 5:00 pm

5/20 PALS Testing

SOL 3rd Math

5/21 PALS Testing

SOL 4th Virginia Studies

5/22 PALS Testing

SOL 5th Science

5/23 PALS Testing

SOL Testing Window

KG Screening 9:00- 3:30 pm

2nd Grade FT- Rappahannock 9:15- 1:45 pm

5/24 PALS Testing

SOL Testing Window

Early Release all grades 1:10

5/27 No School- Memorial Day

5/28 SOL Testing Window

Field Trip 1st to Braehead 9:15- 12:30

5/29 SOL Testing Window

SOL 4th Math

5/30 SOL Testing Window

KG Screening 9:00- 3:30 pm

5/31 SOL Testing Window

6/3 SOL Testing Window

6/4 FT 2nd Grade to Riverside 9:45- 1:30 pm

SOL Testing Window

KG Screening 9:00- 3:30 pm

VRC FT to National Zoo 9:10- 3:30 pm

6/5 SOL Testing Window

3rd Grade FT to Science Museum/ Richmond 9:15- 3:10 pm

6/6 SOL Testing Window

FT K to National Zoo 7:15- 3:00 pm

6/7 SOL Testing Window

Girl Scouts 4:00- 5:00 pm

6/10 5th Grade Party

Hamster Race

6/11 FT 4th Focus to Fredericksburg by Trolley 9:30- 1:00 pm

DARE Day 9:15- 1:00 pm

6/12 Early Release 1:10 all grades

Senior Walk 9:15- 10:15 am

6/13 Early Release 1:10 all grades

6/14 Early Release 1:10 all grades

Last Day of School

6/16 Father's Day

6/17 Professional Day

6/18 Professional Day

Counselor's Corner/ Kindness and Compassion with Mrs. Hopun and Mrs. Spangler

Test Preparation Tips from your school counselor:

Study SOL practice guides! VERY IMPORTANT!!

Week of Testing: Lots of sleep! Encourage sticking to a

structured, calm routine.

Eat a good breakfast with protein and carbs...

Wear layers/ some rooms are warmer than others depending

on time of day and air conditioning.

Be on time to school !!!

Supplies ready!

Listen to instructions carefully.

Follow computer guidelines we have practiced.

Sit up straight in chair.

Take a deep breath. Think calm, happy thoughts.

Positive self- talk: "I've Got This!"


Think carefully. Do easy questions first.

Mark some "For Review"

Slash the trash! Rule out wrong answers.

Answer all of them/ no answer = wrong answer.

Check work before proceeding to next section or clicking


YOU CAN DO IT!!! Just do your best!

The Clinic Chronicle by Amy Pisciotta, RN

Clinic Chronicles

June 14th is fast approaching and I can hardly believe a whole school year is over. It has been a wonderful year here at Grafton’s clinic. I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the children and parents and have appreciated the privilege of taking care of so many wonderful children. I thought I would share my clinic statistics as of May 13thd. I have had 3,309 office visits and have given 1,568 medications. Thursdays are my most busy days and more students come to the clinic in the afternoon (61%). Girls like the clinic more at 52% of my visits and 5th grade loves the clinic above all other grade levels.

Parents of middle school children: I will be giving report to the school nurse at Dixon-Smith. All medical records will be transferred to your child’s perspective schools before the start of the next school year. If you have any questions or concerns, please call. The law has changed and a Tdap is not required to enter 6th grade as the minimum age is now 11 years old and not everyone will be 11 y.o. at the beginning of August. It will, however, be required for 7th grade. For those students that have already received the Tdap vaccination, you are good for 7th grade and that information will be given to the nurse. Please let me know if you have any questions.


The school year is almost over and all medications will need to be picked up from the clinic. You will need to pick up your child’s medication the last day of school between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. If you are unable to do so on that day, please contact the school nurse to arrange another time.

Since some of the medication dispensed in the clinic is classified as a controlled substance, NO medication will be sent home with a student. Medication not picked up will be properly disposed of by July 1, 2019.

For medication, please know that a new form has to be filled out by the physician as well as you before the medication can be given at school. You can find the forms on the website or come to the office and we will get you a copy.

Thank you parents for your cooperation and have a happy and healthy summer. See most of you back this August. Go Grizzlies!!!!

The Book Buzz from Mrs. Lieser, Librarian

It is that time of year again-

Time to “Lego” Your Library Books

As we approach the end of the school, all Grafton Village Elementary Library books will be due on June 5th to allow time to follow up on missing books. We greatly appreciate your support to help locate and return school library books.

Virginia Reader’s Choice

A big congratulations to the 69 students invited to this year’s Virginia Reader’s Choice (VRC) Party! These students successfully read at least 6 out of ten of the VRC nominated books. They joined us on April for a voting party and a round of mini golf in the library! The library was transformed into a nine hole mini golf challenge. Each hole was designed to represent one of the nominated books!

On June 4, 2019, the 42 students who successfully read all 10 of the VRC nominated books will travel to National Zoo for a special “Junior Zoologist” Program. Students will step into a day in the life of a zoologist as they work to solve an animal mystery using the steps of the scientific method!

GVES Welcomes Author Maria Gianferrari

On May 23rd, the students of Grafton Village will welcome author Maria Gianferrari. Ms. Gianferrari is nominated for this year’s Primary Virginia Reader’s Choice Award for her amazing book entitled, Coyote Moon. Please check out Ms. Gianferrari’s website for more information on her writing process and other works. We are extremely excited to meet this amazing author!

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Bright Ideas from Susan Kesler:

Fantastic Summer Opportunities for Children

Our area offers many summer opportunities for children, and they go beyond sports camps! Check out the offerings below and reserve your spaces early!

George Washington’s Ferry Farms/Historic Kenmore – Summer Explorers - Children, ages 6-12 can connect with history through hands-on participation in fun and engaging activities that will help them better understand colonial lifestyles and archaeology.

James Madison’s Montpelier - A variety of summer opportunities for children and the

entire family.

Stratford Hall’s Grandparent Grandchild Summer Camp - Participants re-live 18th-century life on a VA plantation. 3-day sessions will be offered June 25-27, July 16-18, and July 30-Aug.1

LibertyTown Arts Summer Camp - Variety of classes in introduction to art, pottery, origami, mosaic and more. Classes for adults and children.

The Camps at Fredericksburg Academy – Enriching one-week day camps featuring arts, outdoor adventures, hands-on science and more for rising kindergartners through rising seniors, June 10-August 9, 2019

Stagedoor Productions – Summer performance arts camps. All camps will be held at Lafayette Upper Elementary in Fredericksburg through Fredericksburg Parks and Recreation

Summer Coding Classes – Grades 4-12. From Minecraft Game Design to Web Design.

Ursus Summer Latin Program – It introduces 2nd - 5th grade students to Greco-Roman culture, mythology, and Latin language through various interactive activities.

Headquarters Library – Family summer programs. – Click on Events .

Dr. Yum’s Cooking Adventure – This kids cooking camp focuses on preparing exciting and healthy, plant-based recipes using local ingredients. Each class features tastings, nutrition lessons, and cooking skills with age-appropriate tools. In addition, they offer volunteer opportunities for teens. Click on “Events and Classes.” Click on “Summer Camps.”

Mrs. Feeney's Art Message

The hallways are decorated with artwork!!!

Next time you are at school, check out the

artwork in the frames and display cases.

Art Projects

Kindergarten: The students will be water lily painting based on the artwork of Claude Monet.

1st Grade: The students will be creating a water lily with bridge based on the art of Claude Monet.

2nd Grade: The students are creating a three-dimensional rain stick that they use in music class to create the musical sounds of rain.

3rd Grade: The students will be creating a tree house collage.

4th Grade: The students will be creating a florescent color yarn weaving.

5th Grade: The students are creating an ocean pointillism picture.

Supplies needed for art class

-Egg cartons

- Extra-small and extra-large Folgers coffee containers

-Deli meat Hillshire Farms plastic containers

-Wrapping paper rolls

Music "Notes" from Mrs. Greven

The end of the year is fast approaching and that brings our most popular composer of the month: John Williams! We will listen to many familiar film scores he has written for the Symphony Orchestra. This is a time to listen and identify instruments we have heard throughout the year! Can you solve the mystery song each week?

Kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade students enjoyed a VA Opera performance of “Jack and Beanstalk” in April. This performance was brought to GVES students by ARTSLive! and the Fredericksburg Festival for the Performing Arts. These classes also had the opportunity to see “Cinderella”, a performance by the Richmond Ballet provided in part by the Virginia Commission for the Arts.

3rd and 4th graders: As summer approaches, please remember you will need your recorder for music class again next school year. I recommend keeping your recorder in your backpack so you’ll always know where it is. If you are returning to GVES in next year, you can leave your recorder stored in the music room over the summer. Please ask Mrs. Greven about this option.

5th grade students: I wish you all the best as you start your new chapter in middle school. I have learned so much with you and from you! Come back to see us!

PE News

Summer is coming quickly and the temperatures are rising. PE classes are participating in activities to keep our bodies healthy and active and ready for all our summer sports!

- We just finished a wonderful Field Day! We had great weather, and our students (and teachers) had so much fun. A very heartfelt thank you goes out to all our parents and families who came and volunteered their time to make such a great event for our kids.

- 4th and 5th Graders are working on their Spring Fitness Tests. They will measure their growth from when they took their tests in the Fall in the Pacer test, Push Up test, Sit and Reach, Curl Up test, and Trunk lift.

- We are running outside every chance we get to increase our cardio-respiratory endurance. It’s also a chance to earn a shoe token for those students who manage to complete a mile in the allotted time that day.

- We have enjoyed working with your young athletes this year! Hopefully, they have gained some new experiences in some sports that will help them be stay healthy all summer.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

David Bridi

Bevin Menezes