Perkins School News - December 2019

Monthly News for Parents

A Note from our Principal

The month of December was a busy one at the Perkins School with lots of giving by our staff, students and community. Our Perkins staff participated in themed dress-up activities for every Tuesday and Thursday in December to raise money for Blessings in a Backpack. Our Perkins team donated $1 each day they chose to wear holiday socks, accessories or their pajamas and was able to collect $144 to donate to Blessings in a Backpack which provides food bags on Friday afternoons for families in the Perkins and Lincoln schools.

Throughout the month of December, our entire school community has collected non-perishable food items, hats and mittens for the Newark Food Closet. I even saw retired teachers and community members come in to donate to this worthy cause to support our own Newark community. Our kindergartners practiced their counting to find we had 336 food items donated along with a tree-full of hats and mittens! During our monthly assembly on Friday, December 20th, our students and staff were able to present our donations to the representatives from the Newark Food Closet, co-chairs Lisa Barrett and Becky Jandreau. Check out the article that was in the December 26th copy of the Finger Lakes Times. I am very grateful to work with such a caring and compassionate community here at the Perkins School. On behalf of the staff at the Perkins School, I want to wish everyone a happy and healthy new 2020!

~Rhonda Underhill
Proud Perkins Principal

Upcoming Events

  • December 23, 2019 - January 5, 2020 Holiday Recess

Perfect Attendance Classrooms for December

The classrooms with perfect attendance for one week during December include:

Mrs. Quku & Mrs. Faust's first grade class

Mr. Garrett's class

Mrs. Herendeen's second grade class

Attendance Matters!

Staff Spotlight

Roxanne Burgess, Teaching Assistant

Here are some little facts about my life.

I grew up in a small town, Savannah New York, with my three sisters and three brother and wonderful parents. When I graduated from high school, I went to an airline school in Kansas City, Mo. When I got back to New York I got married at the age of 19 and moved to Geneva, NY. I worked at a radio station WGVA for many years. I had two children, Kristy and Brad. We moved to Florida for a year and I worked at Coral Springs elementary school as a teacher assistant. After moving back in 1988 I went to work for the Wayne County Highway Department. I worked there for 28 years. In 1995 I got divorced and moved to Newark, where I met my present husband. We built our home in Port Gibson. Together we have five children and 8 grandchildren. Two of my grandchildren live with us, Taylor and Brayden. After I retired from the Highway Department, I decided to work at Perkins School. I’ve been at Perkins for 3 years now and love coming to school every day.

Staff Spotlight

Mrs. Powell (Darcangelis) was born and raised in Lyons. She still resides in Lyons with her 11-month-old daughter, Gianna, and her husband Jake. She and her husband are on the hunt for a home in Newark!

After high school, Mrs. Powell went on to college to become a teacher and graduated from Keuka College. Two months later she began her Master’s program at Keuka. She studied literacy and graduated with her Master’s Degree in 2012. She began working at Clyde-Savannah Elementary shortly after and taught kindergarten and fourth grade there. In the fall of 2014, Mrs. Powell transferred to Perkins School where she has spent the last five years. Mrs. Powell currently teaches first grade. Mrs. Powell is so grateful that she had supportive teachers when she was a child who have helped her follow her dreams of becoming a teacher.

When Mrs. Powell is not at Perkins, you can usually find her spending time with her family, shopping at TJ Maxx with her mom, or going on walks with Gianna. She also enjoys watching her current and past students’ sporting events.

Her Favorites:

Food: Chicken Parm

Drink: Water with fresh lemon

Color: Purple

Dessert: Ice Cream

Seasons: Summer and Fall

From our Nurse, Mrs. Bouwens

Head Lice

Make sure you are checking your child’s hair nightly, especially over holiday breaks. This age group of children are most likely to get lice because of the closeness they get with their heads and sharing personal items. While lice can’t jump, they are transferred by close contact.

Lice move by crawling; they cannot hop or fly. Lice and nits (eggs) hold onto the hair shaft; especially by the ears and neck. They feed off human blood. Pets or animals do not get lice or transport the lice.

Nits often appear yellow or white; while the louse (lice) is about the size of a sesame seed, has six legs and is tan to a grayish-white color.

Head lice can be more of an annoyance; but do not show to spread diseases. Personal hygiene or cleanliness of home or school has nothing to do with getting head lice.

Head lice causes itching feeling on scalp. If a child scratches constantly, they could damage the scalp skin and that could end up with infection due to the integrity of the skin disturbed by the scratching.

Both over-the-counter and prescription medications are available for treatment of lice infestations. Follow directions on the package. Follow up treatment in 7 days of first treatment is recommended.

Also recommended is combing out the child’s hair with a fine tooth comb, or nit comb at bedtime.

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) does not have clear scientific evidence to determine if suffocation of head lice with mayonnaise, olive oil, margarine, butter, or similar substances is an effective form of treatment.

Of course seek advice of your child’s pediatrician when unsure of head lice or treatment.

Holiday Health

Winter break has been known to bring out anxiety even in adults as well as children.

The holiday time can be a joyous time for you and your family, but it can also be extremely busy. So how can parents help their kids survive during winter break and enjoy their time off? Here are some helpful tips:

· Remember the importance of routines/structure. Try to keep constant as much as possible; like mealtimes and bedtimes.

· Uncertainty is a struggle for some kids. Include them in your plans for activities over break.

· Keep kids occupied by setting up times for outdoor play, arts and crafts, help with baking or even reading a book together each day helps with consistency.

· Whenever possible limit sugary treats/food. Offer healthy snacks

· Set a calm example for your child. If you are stressed, they will feel this and work off of it. They won’t know how to handle it if you are exhibiting signs of holiday stress. Relax, enjoy your time with your kids and family during this break.

New Year – Brings return to school and routines

Finally – one note about New Years – it triggers the end of winter break. That brings stress for some kids. They have had lots of fun over break and see school as back to work. You might see meltdowns, more stomach aches, headaches, crying, and for some, panic attacks. They internalize all those same feelings they had at the first day of school. A new year brings uncertainty.

· You as parents can help by a few days before school starts talking to your child about school.

· Ask them what they miss and look forward to.

· Get back on bedtime routines

· Listen to your child’s fears and worries. Validate them, help them to think of solutions

· Limit electronic usage over break (especially a few days before school resumes)



Please remember to send sneakers to school with your children. Now that they are wearing snow boots to school it is very important for them to have shoes or sneakers to change into.

Tips for Working with the Beginning Reader

Reading each day with your child will help to develop important early reading skills. Here are some tips for working with children as beginning readers:

· Encourage your child to use his/her finger to point to each work.

· Read a sentence and have your child repeat it.

· Don’t be afraid to read the same book again. Repeated reading helps build reading fluency which is reading accurately and with expression.

· Take turns reading sentences or pages.

· Talk about the story as you read it. What do you think will happen next? What does this story remind you of? How do you think this character feels?

· 15 to 20 minutes of reading is plenty for a beginning reader.

Have fun reading together!

Big picture

Perkins Elementary School

For additional information and photos of events and happenings check out the Perkins School web page at and Perkins School on Twitter by going to @Newark_PS