Washington Learning Center News

"Learning for fun, learning for growth, learning for life"

March 2023 Message from Principal Brown

It is time to register for kindergarten!

It is time to start thinking about KINDERGARTEN REGISTRATION for the fall of 2023! The Washington Learning Center (WLC) staff if busy working on preparing a mailing to all kindergarten eligible children and working on the plans for our registration event that will be held on the evening of April 13 and morning of Apr 14, 2023. Here is your link to register: https://forms.gle/PJNJHRbYn1aWWuP28

This year our current census tells us we have over 240 kindergarten eligible children in the district. Early registration helps us determine how many teachers we will need for the up coming year. Kindergarten is the one grade level with the most unknowns. Once we have all of our children registered the following grade levels can plan their staff and programs based on our numbers.

You can help us by encouraging anyone you know who has a kindergarten eligible child to contact us and register early. Preschool children attending our Eagles 4 and Theo Wright Center classes need to register for kindergarten as well since there are different registration materials for kindergarten that you will need to complete.

Kindergarten at WLC is filled with hands-on learning activities, spending time outdoors learning about and with our environment in all kinds of weather. The classroom teachers have a wonderful daily schedule which also includes special features such as morning meeting, S.M.A.R.T. (Stimulating Maturity through Accelerated Readiness Training), outdoor learning, daily recess, and Purposeful P.L.A.Y. The talented specialist teachers at WLC provide the children with a well rounded curriculum and experiences. They have physical education 5 days a week, music 3 days a week, art 2 days a week, a visit to the library twice a week for book check out and literacy and for technology class. At WLC learning is fun!

“Be kind, be safe, be a learner!” is our motto and school song at WLC. The children earn celebration days within their classroom, classrooms are recognized with our Eagle Award for demonstrating building expectations, and students are selected for a “Good News Call of the Day” with the principal. Staff are also recognized at WLC with our “One Team, One Dream - WLC Pride” award. Staff members select a peer to pass the award to in order to honor the great work they do at WLC. Watch our social media sites to see our latest featured students, classrooms, and staff.

Please contact the WLC office for any questions.

Conferences begin this week!

If you have not already signed up for a time to attend:

Click here to sign up for a preschool conference.
Click here to sign up for a kindergarten conference.

Don't miss out on the Washington Learning Center Year Book!

The Washington Learning Center yearbook is 24 full color pages that include all preschool & kindergarten students (Headstart class is not included). Don't miss out on ordering. Late orders will not be accepted after April 10th & there will be a VERY limited amount of extras for sale in the office after yearbooks have been distributed.
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Spring Pictures will be held at WLC on Thursday, March 30th!

Every student will go down with their class to be photographed but purchasing a picture package is entirely optional!

If you'd like to order a picture package click here & use Picture Day ID: EVTWNNJMP

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Food Services Director - Teri Jesperson

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WLC March Breakfast Menus

Breakfast is FREE for all students from 7:30am-8:00am. Please remember if your child is needing to eat breakfast at school they need to be here early enough to make it up to their classroom by 8:00 A.M. Kindergarten does officially start at 8:00 A.M. and students will begin to be marked tardy if they are coming up late from breakfast. Thank you for your assistance and effort in helping the students be up to their classrooms to get their days started on time.

Minnesota School Sealant Program

Parents and Guardians,

Our school will be hosting the Minnesota School Sealant Program, where your child has the opportunity to receive FREE or reduced cost preventive dental services at school. A licensed dental professional will be offering sealants, cleanings, and fluoride varnishes to students.

The School Sealant Program will be happening on:

Wednesday, April 19th for grades PreK & K.

In order to be eligible to receive these services, you need to fill out a consent form with your child's information and return it to school.

The consent form is due by: Friday, March 24th.

If you have any kind of dental insurance, these services are completely FREE to you. We submit the procedures to your insurance and donate whatever portion they do not cover. If you do not have dental insurance, your child can receive these services at 70% off the usual rates.

Dental sealants, fluoride varnishes, and teeth cleanings are often provided in a public health setting due to the amazing benefits they provide at a low cost. Your child will be kept comfortable throughout these easy preventive dental services. The entire process takes less than 15 minutes. They even get to see the tooth fairy that travels with our program!

You can read more information on School Sealant Programs from the CDC and the Minnesota Department of Health at the following links.



Your student is encouraged to participate in this annual program every year. If your student was seen last year, this will allow the MN School Sealant Program to provide a cleaning and fluoride varnish which we recommended once every 6 months for kids. Sealants only need to be placed once for each adult molar tooth. If there is a new adult tooth erupted that needs a sealant, it will be placed. Please check all three boxes on the consent form for optimal oral health.

Please complete this consent form today, www.schoolsealants.com/consentform, to make sure your child will be able to benefit from this great program.

If you are able, we prefer that you fill out the consent form online. This helps us process things quicker and more efficiently so we can help serve more students in our state that need these services. Otherwise, please complete the paper consent form that your student will bring home and return it to school to make sure your child will be able to benefit from this great program.

Please note that this program is at our school for a limited time and they have many children to help. Checking the boxes on the consent form authorizes them to perform those services, but DOES NOT GUARANTEE they will be completed. The dental professionals provide services as time allows. They will only submit the services that they are able to complete to your insurance.

Please allow the MN School Sealant Program 2-6 weeks for processing all the paperwork after the program is complete. They will send you an email in 2-6 weeks with the results of your student’s oral health screening, what procedures were completed and recommendations for follow up care with a dentist. If you want more information about this program, please visit www.schoolsealants.com.


We will be looking for 1-2 parent volunteers to assist with sealant day. If you are able to help please email our school nurse, Tara Fausch at: tfausch@newulm.k12.mn.us

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ECFE - Betty Uehling

It has been great to see so many families at our ECFE classes! Our next 6-week sessions will begin at the end of March/beginning of April. Join us for some springtime fun!

Upcoming events:

Community Baby Shower: Saturday, March 25

ECFE Cookie Making Class: Friday, March 31

Dr Suess Infant Class: Thursday, March 9

There WILL be ECFE class on Thursday, April 6

ECFE/Eagle Preschool Parent Advisory Board Meeting: Friday, April 21

Daddy Daughter Dance: Sunday, April 23

Community Family Fair: Saturday, April 29

Mom and Son Superhero Dance: Sunday, April 30

Grandparent and Me Class: Saturday, May 6

Vehicle Fair, Wednesday, May 17

Don't miss the ECFE Community Baby Shower!

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Have fun at the ECFE Father/Daughter and or Mother/Son dances!

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Eagles Preschool - Ms. Eileen

Eagle’s Preschoolers spent the month of February spreading their love for kindness and reading!

Our school song at Washington Learning Center reminds us to: Be Kind, Be Safe, Be a Learner.

Our students joined the Kindergartners with the school’s “I love to read” challenge. Many hearts were beautifully decorated to represent each book read to them through February. The value of exposing children to print and literature is so important to their success and interest in learning and reading. Limiting electronic exposure and increasing one on one time reading to your child can strengthen their attention and understanding to their environment. Please consider continuing our reading daily challenge and enjoy the special bond it can build in your family’s early childhood education.

Our second Parent Day was held Feb 16th. It was such a great opportunity to see the children share their classroom with their family. This is another important connection opportunity to bridge the lessons of life between class and home. Our next Parent Day will be on Thursday, March 16th starting at 9:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m. The first 30 minutes will again be downstairs in our meeting room and then you will join your child in class for the last hour.

These important years for your child and family go quickly, so enjoy the opportunities at WLC and remember we all should: Be Kind, Be Safe and Be a Learner!

Mark your calendar for Eagle's Preschool Special Person Day Events

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Kindergarten - Ms. Dummer

Our short month of February was packed full of fun in Kindergarten! This month we celebrated "I Love to Read," Friendship Day, and the 100th Day of School, Students also enjoyed focusing on ways to be kind to peers and staff during Random Acts of Kindness week.

We are wrapping up our second Trimester and boy have we learned a lot this year! We have met the last of our Superkids and now are finding out what new adventures they will take on in their Superkids Clubs! In math, we are continuing to work on fluency in teen numbers and 2-D and 3-D shapes, We are also working towards identifying, ordering and writing numbers to 100! These hardworking Kindergarteners sure are proving they're "100 days smarter!"

Even though "I Love to Read" month is coming to an end, we look forward to more opportunities to share our love of reading with a special "March Madness" reading activity coming up next month! We are also excited to FINALLY go on our winter field trip to Flandrau after many weather delays!

Reminder: The kindergarten field trip to Flandrau has been rescheduled to Friday, March 10th. If you had signed up to volunteer and are no longer able to please contact the WLC Office or your child's teacher to indicate so. Thank you!

We are still looking for a parent who has a child in Mrs. Gasow's & Mrs. Syverson's class to join us. If you are able to attend please click here to sign up. Thank you!

Library & Technology - Ms. Hoek

I Love to Read

Parents, Grandparents, and other special adults joined the students on Monday, February 27 & 28 for weekly library time. They watched the students log in to SeeSaw, open an activity, and complete it together. The SeeSaw activity was based on Dr. Seuss and all his wonderful book characters.

Ms. Hoek

Don't miss the bookfair!

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Art - Mrs. Hanson

The WLC Kindergarten Art Room has been full of color and love while studying shapes! Students are continuing to explore how the color wheel works while learning the difference between geometric and organic shapes! They mixed paint, used primary and secondary colors, and created amazing self-portraits! They learned that everything has shape and that they can make people that aren't sticks! Up next, they will finish a collaborative mural project and continue work with warm and cool colors to make art. Featured artists to inspire them will include Ezra Jack Keats and Alma Thomas! The art room is always a fun place for mess and creativity!

Special Education - Erika Lieser

Resources for Families

Minnesota Autism Resource Portal

The First Steps: Pathway to learning, playing and growing provides a summary of key developmental milestones that babies and toddlers should be achieving. It also has tips, tools and guidance to help your child’s development. In addition, it describes what resources are available to parents and caregivers who have questions or concerns about their child’s development.


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Southern MN Initiative Foundation

Southern MN Initiative Foundation offers so many good courses, events that focus on Early Childhood and they are often FREE.


Early Childhood Family Education Classes

ECFE offers so many good courses! Click here to check them out!

Caregiver Skills Training (CTS) Program

At no cost to families, the evidence-based CST program teaches parents and caregivers the day-to-day skills they need to help their children reach their full potential. Caregivers are taught to use everyday play and home routines as opportunities to build their child’s communication, engagement, positive behavior and daily living skills.


Pyramid Model

The goals of the Center are to assist states and programs in their implementation of sustainable systems for the implementation of the Pyramid Model for Supporting Social Emotional Competence in Infants and Young Children (Pyramid Model) within early intervention and early education programs with a focus on promoting the social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes of young children birth to five, reducing the use of inappropriate discipline practices, promoting family engagement, using data for decision-making, integrating early childhood and infant mental health consultation and fostering inclusion.


Youtube: Mindfulness teacher- Belly Breaths

Pyramid book Nook options: I can share, no biting, on monday when it rained. https://challengingbehavior.org/collection/book-nook/
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Resources and strategies to help parents, grandparents, friends, and neighbors caring for young children. Topics to choose from include: biting, potty training, daily routines, play, challenging behaviors and more!


Zero to Three

Infants and toddlers are ready to absorb new information, environments, and love from their caregivers. Those earliest days, weeks, and months are at the core of ZERO TO THREE’s work as the premier organization translating the brain science of early childhood into a better world for babies and toddlers.

Families: https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/for-families/

Professionals: https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/for-professionals/

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Belly Breathing- The mindfulness teacher https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RiMb2Bw4Ae8 Rainbow

Relaxation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IIbBI-BT9c4&t=4s

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New Ulm Public Library

Books on emotions you can find at your local library… you just need a library card!

Social Emotional Enrichment and Development(SEED)

SEED emphasizes the emotional and social development of your child while it supplements academic abilities. Social and emotional skills supplement your child’s success throughout his or her life. SEED helps children develop connections between their brain and their behaviors. SEED’s goal is to provide your child with the confidence to succeed in school and life.


News from the Nurse - Tara Fausch, Licensed School Nurse

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Greater than 50% of all calls received by poison control centers across the country involve children 5 years of age and younger. The most common place that accidental poisonings of children occur are in their own homes. With national poison prevention week being March 19th through March 25th, see below for additional information on accidental poisonings in children and tips on preventing an accidental poisoning from happening in your home or involving your child.

Did you Know?

  • In 2020, there were 55 poison control centers in the U.S. and they took calls for over 2.1 million human poisonings.

    • This means that there was one poison exposure reported every 15 seconds.

  • The most common ages for a child to experience an accidental poisoning are one and two years.

  • For children 12 years and younger, it is more common for males to experience accidental poisoning than it is for females.

  • The most common substances reported in pediatric exposures are cosmetics and personal care products, followed closely by household cleaning products.

  • The most serious poisonings in children, those that result in death, are most commonly caused by fumes/gases/vapors, including carbon monoxide, and by pain medications.

  • Poison Control receives many calls concerning the ingestion of non-toxic household products, such as antacids, diaper creams, crayons, pet foods, potting soil, and more. Because it can be very hard to know what is poisonous when ingested and what is safe, it is best to err on the side of caution and connect with Poison Control if you are ever unsure.

  • Many plants and flowers commonly seen around the state are considered toxic or mildly toxic. Some of these include the leaves of tomato plants, daisies, roses, lily of the valley, peonies, fox glove, and many more. For a complete list, visit: https://mnpoison.org/wp-content/uploads/plant-guide-list.pdf

Prevention Tips:

  • Be prepared! Save the poison control number in your cell phone and keep it posted near any landline phones as well. The number is 1-800-222-1222.

  • Bookmark poison control’s website as well. https://www.webpoisoncontrol.org/

  • Also save the National Battery Ingestion Hotline number to your cell phone and call immediately if a battery is swallowed or placed in the ear or nose. The number is 1-800-498-8666.

  • Install a carbon monoxide detector in every sleeping area in your home and test them periodically to ensure they remain in working order.

  • Poison proof EVERY home where your child spends time. Approximately 20% of accidental drug ingestions by children involve a grandparent’s medication.

  • Poison proof all areas of the home, including the garage and outdoor areas, even if your child doesn’t regularly have access to these areas.

  • Use medicines safely. Follow label instructions exactly. Use a dosing syringe or cup rather than a household spoon. Do not refer to any medicine as candy. Remember that child RESISTANT caps are not child PROOF.

  • Lock up and/or store any household products and medicines out of your child’s reach.

  • Keep button batteries AND devices that use them out of reach of children. If these devices cannot be kept out of reach, ensure that the battery compartment is well secured so that a child cannot open it to access the batteries.

  • Put anything that is potentially poisonous away as soon as you are done using it and keep a close eye on it while using. Most childhood poisonings occur while the product is being used or immediately after.

  • Certain household products are especially hazardous and should only be bought in the quantity that is needed. If there is unneeded excess, it should be promptly disposed of per product instructions. Some of these products include antifreeze, windshield washer solutions, drain cleaners, insecticides, toilet bowl cleaners, and hydrocarbons, like gasoline, oils, and paint thinners.

  • Liquid nicotine products that are used with e-cigarettes and vaping products are very poisonous if swallowed.

Image credit: https://www.iaff.org/toolkits/poison-prevention/

So, this March, take some time to assess how poison proof your home is, remedy any hazards that you find, and get familiar with your poison resources at https://www.poison.org/ .

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School Social Worker - Karla Diehn

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Community School Director - Tammy Lorch

Helpful tip: how to make an online payment to your student’s lunch account

Did you know you can make your life easier by adding money to your family lunch account online using a credit card? No need to send money with your student hoping it makes it to the correct location. The amazing thing about paying online is the automatic payment features which give you options of how much you want to add on each automatic payment and setting a low balance threshold to trigger the automatic payment. Below are some basic instructions to get you started. If you need additional assistance, please call Diane in the District Office at 507.233.6192.

Food service website: https://family.wordwareinc.com

  • If this is your first time using the online option, you will need to contact Diane in the District Office (507.233.6192) for a “family key”. The “family key” will enable your online account.

    • New account registration is an easy 3-step process; follow the instructions as they appear on the screen

  • To make a payment, in the middle of the screen, you will see a dollar sign ($); click on the words “Add Funds”

    • You will be transferred to the SmartSchoolK12 (SSK12) page

    • Scroll down and input a dollar amt in any of the boxes – it doesn’t matter which one because they’re all connected to the same lunch account

      • After you enter the dollar amount, hit return/enter on your keyboard

    • Click on the blue Checkout button on the top right

    • Select a funding source - or enter one if you haven’t already

    • Click on Pay Now

  • To set up an automatic payment options

    • On the home page, click on the words “Family Accounts”

    • On the “Family Accounts” page, click on the words “Auto-Refill Options”

    • On the “Auto-Refill Options” page:

      • Click the check box for “Auto-Refill Enabled”

      • Enter “Refill Amount”; this is the dollar amount you want deducted from your credit/debit card each time your account is auto-refilled

      • Enter “Low Balance Threshold”; this is the balance in your lunch account that triggers the refill deduction from your credit/debit card

      • Click the button for “Save Refill Preferences”

      • You will see “Entry saved successfully” in small print under the words “Auto-Refill Options”

Community Education - Crystal Fleck

Kids Canvas Painting with Bridget- MultiMedia Flower Project

Instructor: Bridget Gusso

Monday, March 27th

4:00pm-6:00 p.m.

Fee $25

Washington Learning Center (door #1), Room # 104

Grades: K & Up Min 3/ Max 12

Students will be Painting paper plates and assembling them into flowers. We will then be attaching them to an 8x10 canvas. This will be an extremely exciting, creative process! Remember to wear clothing that can get messy and bring a snack if you would like!

Kids Canvas Painting with Bridget- Jackson Pollock Painting

Instructor: Bridget Gusso

Monday, April 24th

4:00pm-6:00 p.m.

Fee $25

Washington Learning Center (door #1), Room # 104

Grades: K & Up Min 3/ Max 12

Students will be creating a VERY messy Jackson Pollock inspired painting.Students will be enjoying the process of putting paint on canvas in a very exploratory way. This is a BLAST! The artwork will be created on an 8x10 canvas. Remember to wear clothing that can get messy as this process is extremely messy! Bring a snack if you would like.


Instructor: John Olson

Thursdays, March 9,16, 23, 30, & April.13 7:00-9:00m

Fee $71 min 6/ max 14

Washington Learning Center (door #1) Room 104

Topics will include: Introduction to your camera, composition for improving photographs, how to use ISO, white balance, shutter speed and aperture to properly expose photographs, techniques on stopping and blurring action, focus modes, depth of field, use of different lenses and types of lighting. You will be encouraged to take photographs outside of class for practice and sharing with the class. Help will be given to understand camera settings and topics of interest that class members may have. You should have a DSLR camera.

Registrations can be received by:

Online with a credit card at http://newulm.ce.eleyo.com

Phone: 507-233-8307 (registration is complete only after payment has been received)

Mail: Community Education, 910 14th St. North, New Ulm, MN 56073

Stop in at our office at the Washington Learning Center, 910 14th St. North (door #1)

Crystal Fleck

Community Education Coordinator

Washington Learning Center

910 14th North Street New Ulm, MN 56073 | (-507-233-8307 | *- cfleck@newulm.k12.mn.us

Visit our website at http://www.newulm.k12.mn.us/community-ed/

Like us on Facebook community ed.new ulm

Scan the QR code below to view a pdf copy of the Community Education Brochure:

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Scan the QR code below to sign up for a Community Education Class:

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Mark Your Calendars:


  • Friday, March 3rd - NO SCHOOL FOR ALL STUDENTS, staff workshop day

  • Wednesday, March 8th & Thursday March 9th - Early Childhood Screenings held at Washington Learning Center. A scheduled appointment is required to attend. To schedule a screening please call 507-233-8300.

  • Thursday, March 9th - 3:30pm-7:30pm - Eagles Preschool & Kindergarten Conferences & Scholastic Book Fair - Only scheduled conference times will be honored.

  • Friday, March 10th - Kindergarten Field trip to Flandrau (may be reschedule if inclement weather)

  • Friday, March 10th - 6pm-7pm - ECFE Gym Night at Washington Learning Center

  • Wednesday, March 15th - last Early Childhood Screenings to be held until next fall at the Washington Learning Center. A scheduled appointment is required.

  • Thursday, March 16th - Eagles Preschool Special Person Day. (AM: 9:30am-11am, 10am-11am in the classroom. PM: 1:30pm-3:00pm, 2pm-3pm in the classroom)

  • March 17th - 12pm-4pm - Scholastic Book fair in the library

  • Saturday, March 25th - ECFE Community Baby Shower (information below) Registration is not required but is very encouraged and appreciated!

  • Thursday, March 30th - Lifetouch Spring pictures at WLC

  • Friday, March 31st - ECFE Cookie Jar Class - Registration Required


  • April 5th & 6th - ADDED back on as student days due to snow days

  • April 7th & 10th - NO SCHOOL FOR ALL STUDENTS (Staff workshop & Easter Holiday)

  • Monday, April 10th - Yearbook ordering deadline. Late orders will not be accepted.

  • Sunday, April 23rd, 1:00pm-2:30pm - Daddy Daughter Dance. Tickets required. Click here to purchase.

  • Sunday, April 30th - Mom & Son Superhero Dance. Tickets required. Click here to purchase.

Please notice the updated calendar - April 5th & 6th have been added back on as student days due to snow days.

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Drop Off / Pick Up Reminders

Franklin Street

Please refrain from parking on the WEST side of Franklin Street throughout the school day.

Preschool parent cars will be lining up along Franklin, the length of the parking lot, as they wait to turn right onto 14th N Street.

Kindergarten parents will continue to line up along the WEST side of Franklin just north of the parking lot entrance.

Thank you for your efforts in following these plan to keep everyone safe.

Please review the 2 maps below for preschool and kindergarten traffic plans.

Preschool Pickup

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Kindergarten Pickup

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Parking and Entering the Building

Please use the PARKING LOT when you plan to leave your vehicle and enter the building with your child.

We want to keep Franklin Street free of parked cars during drop off and pick up so parents waiting in cars can line up there and not block the street.

Thank you for your efforts in following these plan to keep everyone safe.

Please see the maps and contact the office with any questions. (507) 233-8300

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