GRE Family Gazette

December 10, 2018

Big picture

Dear GRE Families,

What an awesome week at GRE! Our 4th graders put on an All Star Holiday Performance for students and families. They put in so much work to get ready for this event. A huge thank you to Mrs. Wood, the 4th Grade Teachers, our Custodial staff and everyone involved in this amazing performance! In addition to this work, students and teachers in all grades have been busy completing Winter Benchmark Assessments. This week, teachers will hold Data Team Meetings. At these meetings, we review the progress of every student in the building and determine what supports if any are needed. We bring not only classroom teachers together, but Intervention Specialists, Gifted Intervention Specialist, School Psychologist, Instructional Facilitator and myself! It's quite a crew. At these meetings not only do we discuss students progress, but we also work to align our instructional practices and make sure we are implementing Big Walnut's 2020 vision in all areas. You will get information about your child's progress sent home on Wednesday, December 19th via backpacks. This will include their grade card and any additional progress information. Be sure to check backpacks at that time!

A HUGE thank you to the many, many volunteers that helped with PTO's Holly Market, Shop and Bake Sale. I saw so many faces this past Saturday-it was wonderful! There were countless hours put into this event and it showed. I'm already looking forward to next year:)

Let's have a great week at GRE!

Kate Thoma

Principal, General Rosecrans Elementary

A Few Important Reminders:

1. Our Lost and Found is over flowing! Be sure to have your child check the Lost and Found for missing items or come in yourself to help track down belongings. All items from the Lost and Found will be donated on December 20th.

2. Grade cards will be sent home on December 19th via backpacks. Teachers have a work day on the 20th and will return the same day as students on January 2nd. They will be available to answer any questions at that time. A reminder that we will have one more round of conferences as well on February 21st.

Music with Mrs. Wood

December is a great time of year in music! Students get to learn about winter celebrations around the world. Here are a couple of highlights from each grade level.


Students are singing, chanting, dancing, exploring movement, and playing instruments. They are learning about music associated with celebrations.

Music Playlist:

Ask your child to sing or chant: Jingle Bells or There’s a Little Snowflake

1st Grade:

Students just finished reading the story of “The Nutcracker” where they listened and explored movement to the “The Nutcracker March” and “The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy”. Ask your student to show you the three movement themes they learned in the “Nutcracker March”.

Music Playlist:

Download the song “The Nutcracker March” and “The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” by Peter Tchaikovsky

2nd Grade:

At the end of November, students learned how to play two ostinato patterns on the xylophones with proper mallet technique. They’ve also been singing, moving, and dancing to a variety of folk songs. Currently, they are learning about winter celebrations and how to dance the hora, which is an Israeli folk dance.

Music Playlist:

Ask your student to sing: No More Pie or Old Joe Clark

3rd Grade:

Students are making progress on their recorder unit. They are learning new notes, songs, and rhythms. They are also learning how to articulate notes and play with a gentle sound. We are excited to begin our recorder karate unit in a few weeks.

Music Playlist:

Ask your student to sing or play: Gently Sleep, Merrily We Roll Along, and It’s Raining

4th Grade:

Congratulations to our 4th graders on their performance on Thursday. Students did a great job showcasing their musical skills in front of parents, families, and students. We are very proud of all of their hard work this year!

For the rest of December, students will be learning Holiday songs, continuing their rhythm unit in triple meter, and preparing for our ukulele unit in January.

Music Playlist:

Ask your student to sing: In the Bleak Midwinter, Jingle All the Way, or Up on the Housetop

Open Music:

3rd graders have been working on their recorder songs

Don't forget...

Our schools are extremely fortunate to have the support of our parent and community volunteers. While we are continually grateful for this support, we are also aware of the potential concerns that can arise when volunteers are working directly with students. One of the recent priorities established by our District Safety Committee, which is comprised of law enforcement personnel, first responders, parents, and staff, is that volunteers should have background checks completed to promote safety within our schools. Each staff member and coach in the district is required to provide initial and ongoing background checks to insure that they are deemed safe for working with our students, so it makes sense to consider a similar requirement for volunteers working with students or who are helping in the building during the school day. Click here to read more about our volunteer policy that will go into effect on March 1, 2019.

Important Dates

December 13 PTO Meeting 6:30 pm

December 18 Eagle Ed

December 19 Report Cards Come Home in Backpacks

Dec. 20-Jan. 1 NO SCHOOL: Winter Break

PaySchools Central

Pay school fees, add lunch money to accounts, etc.