South Elementary Family Newsletter

Volume #1 September, 2021

Monthly Message from the Principal

September is a month of new beginnings for everybody connected to education, whether a student, parent, teacher, bus driver, or staff member. There are many "new" things in your child's world right now. They may be new to the school. a student who just moved to the area, or an incoming Kindergartener. Even if you have a returning student to South, there are still new teachers, new classrooms, new grades, new classmates, new expectations, and new responsibilities. Children will be developing new levels of independence in each grade, as well as learning new skills in the areas of physical, academic, social, and emotional learning. We are already seeing the direct impact of Covid on social skills and independence. Many children had been home with family members who naturally helped them. While at that same time, kids were isolated from the social interactions that come from being at school. It will be more difficult at first to separate from parents, get in a back to school routine, and persevere through things that are hard, but we will get there!

To start this year's new adventures off on the right foot, I want to encourage positive and respectful communication between the home and school. To me, this means not using social media in a negative way and striving for solutions instead, even if we have to have a difficult conversation to get there. Working together, we can accomplish much more than working separately. Sharing important and relevant information about your child with their teacher, other staff, or myself, helps us have a better picture of their world. In keeping with that, their point of view has only one perspective-their own-so please presume good intentions when you hear from them about an incident at school. You can always ask more questions to gather information, or send an email and ask the teacher if necessary.

I am looking forward to a great school year filled with lots of smiles, happy Crickets, and getting to know all of you better. Happy September!

Aloha, Steph Brown


To Do List

  • Virtual Open House is Tuesday, 9/14. Be on the lookout on Monday, 9/13, for an email from me with an introduction and zoom links for each teacher or groups of teachers.

  • Please make sure you go to Back To School Gateway, to update your contact information with the best number to reach you in case of emergencies, and your email so we can keep you informed with school updates. That link is HERE.

  • Please do not park in the staff parking lot to drop off your student at school in the morning. We do not want students and families coming in the front door at that time. That is a bus drop-off point. In addition, staff parking is limited. You may either drop off in the car line or park on a side street and come across the crosswalk to a staff member on the blacktop.

  • Please email me if you would like to be a member of our School Council. We would love to have you participate.

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Important Dates

Monday, September 6, No School, Labor Day

Tuesday, September 14, Virtual Open House, 5:30-7:30PM

Friday, September 17, Early Release at 12:30PM-*if students are getting lunch from school, it will be sent home as a bagged lunch

Monday, September 20, Somerset School Committee @ 6:30PM

Tuesday, September 21. Virtual PTO Meeting @ 6PM. Link is HERE.

Wednesday, September 29, Early Release at 12:30PM-*if students are getting lunch from school, it will be sent home as a bagged lunch

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A Little Peace of South.....Monthly Comfort

Welcome Back! If anyone needs anything-referrals for yourselves or your kids, please reach out anytime. Looking forward to a great year!

Contact me at: or Caring Corner Website Created by our Elementary School Counselor for your ongoing support.

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From Ms. Bertrand, Our School Nurse

Greetings South Families!

Please remember to screen your child each day for Covid symptoms prior to sending them to school.

If they have any of the following, please keep them home:

COVID-19 symptoms list:

  • Fever (100.0° Fahrenheit or higher), chills, or shaking chills

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

  • New loss of taste or smell

  • Muscle aches or body aches

  • Cough (not due to other known cause, such as chronic cough

  • Sore throat, when in combination with other symptoms

  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea when in combination with other

  • Headache when in combination with other symptoms

  • Fatigue, when in combination with other symptoms

  • Nasal congestion or runny nose (not due to other known causes, such as allergies), when in combination with other symptoms

ALL individuals with the above symptoms should be screened for Covid. If your child has any of these symptoms, it is encouraged and recommended they be tested for Covid. If you decline to have your child tested, please be advised that there is a 10 day quarantine period before returning to school. If you do choose to have your child tested, they can return to school on Day 8, with a negative test result (can be tested no earlier than Day 5), when their symptoms are improved, and they are fever free for 24 hours WITHOUT medication. Please report ANY of the above symptoms to the School Nurse immediately and do not bring your child to school. **Be advised that a parent’s note of a “chronic” condition such as allergies is NOT sufficient and the documentation MUST be provided after contact with your child’s healthcare provider to rule out Covid**

*Please DO NOT send your child to school with medication. Medication must be delivered directly to the School Nurse by the parent/guardian and with all proper medication orders..

*If you were not aware, SPS has a Face Coverings Policy. Note that bandannas, gaiters, and vented masks are NOT acceptable for school use. Shields are also not for school use without a mask. If you feel as though your child CANNOT wear a mask due to physical or behavioral limitations, accommodations can be made with a doctor's note.

PHYSICAL EXAMINATIONS: Please submit an annual comprehensive physical exam, which includes all screenings (vision, hearing, postural) to the School Nurse.

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South PTO

September 2021


  • Click HERE to learn more about "Cheddar Up" which the PTO will be using this year for any purchases.
  • Come to the first PTO Meeting of the school year (9/21) and stay up to date with current events, volunteer opportunities, and much more!

  • The PTO is a volunteer organization made up of parents, teachers, administrators, and support staff.

  • The purpose of PTO is to enhance and support the educational and recreational experience at South School.

  • Meetings are a great way to meet other parents and work together on upcoming events.

  • The PTO meets virtually on the 3rd Tuesday of each month at 6PM. Link is at the bottom of the page. Please join us!

Mark Your Calendar!

9/21 Virtual PTO Meeting 6PM

9/24 Spirit Day Theme is South Pride: Wear green or your South Elementary gear.

9/29 Early Dismissal-12:30

Contact Us!

Follow South Elementary PTO on Facebook for updates and information.

PTO Meeting: September 21st at 6PM

Zoom Link for PTO Meeting:

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Parent Resources

September Lunch Menu: please click HERE. Please also see this Welcome Back Flyer from the Food Service Department:

Click HERE for September Read Aloud Books for Elementary Students

Click HERE for a 100's Chart to help count to 100, add, subtract, and notice number patterns.

Click HERE for an Alphabet Linking Chart to help your child match sounds and letters when writing/reading.

Click HERE for Multiplication Charts to practice math facts or use for a reference.

Somerset Public Schools, SY' 21-22 Calendar: please click HERE

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We are so excited to have our new crickets! The past 2 days we have been learning about how to be safe in our classroom and have fun together. Next week we will begin talking about how to make good choices and be bucket fillers. When doing this we make others and ourselves happy. We will also have many opportunities to explore using different tools appropriately and playing with a variety of manipulatives. This month we will discuss our families and how our classroom is a type of family. We also begin to work on rhyming words, identify shapes, and work with the numbers 1-5. Please work with your child's self help skills such as zipping/unzipping their own backpack and opening their own lunches. We look forward to a great year with great friends!

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September newsletter

First grade is off to a great start! We are working hard to learn our classroom routines and school rules. We are also learning all about each other. First graders are enjoying being able to sit in groups at tables, and having class meetings on the rug this year! It’s going to be an awesome year!

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Welcome back to school! We are looking forward to a fantastic year! September in second grade is filled with building community and relationships. We will spend time creating and establishing routines and classroom rules that will help us learn and grow together throughout the school year. We will enjoy a friendship themed book study, start our study of numbers and place value, and set the foundation for our reading and writing blocks. The month of September will also be a time to gather data regarding student skills and ability so that we can meet the academic needs of all students. Back to School night is virtual on September 14th with two sessions. We will send out links and more information as the time draws nearer.

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Welcome Back Third Grade Families,

What a busy start to the school year we have had. Third graders are doing a great job settling in and learning the new routines and rituals. Just a few reminders, our binders are a very important tool to keep us organized. Our binders, that should be brought to school daily, should contain a pencil pouch with our supplies as well as our Cricket folder. Please take a moment each night to review and remove the work in the “Keep at Home” pocket. Any assignments or notes should be kept in the “Return to School” pocket. Also please take a moment to connect with our class via the Remind app. Information has been sent home with class codes and this information can also be found in Google Classroom. Please take a minute to label your child’s belongings such as water bottles, lunch boxes and sweatshirts. This helps ensure that we can reunite lost items to their owner.

As we begin to dive into academics, we will be focusing on the great state of Massachusetts in social studies. In science students will be discovering the power of water and how it affects our weather. In math we will be quickly reviewing addition and subtraction with three digit numbers before jumping into extended place value. In writing, we are focusing on narrative writing. In reading, we are practicing classroom routines, centers, and are beginning to learn about characteristics of fiction books. We are very excited to meet with you during our Back to School night. Please keep a look out for more information.

Get ready for a great year!

Mrs Kela, Mrs Lopes, Mrs. Camara and Mrs. Oliveira

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Dear Fourth Grade Families,

This month of September, we are excited to welcome our fourth grade Crickets back to school. We are working with our students to build positive, caring, respectful classroom communities as we practice our Responsive Classroom rituals and routines. We have had the opportunity to get to know and learn about each of our students through students’ “shares” as we build communication and writing skills.

Mrs. Camara’s math students are learning new math vocabulary words, skills, and strategies and they are applying their knowledge to Place Value, Addition, and Subtraction to One Million. Mrs. Oliveira’s writing students are learning to develop and strengthen their writing as they plan, revise, and edit their writing pieces. As they progress through fourth grade, students will build writing stamina, vocabulary, and skills.

We are thrilled to announce that students’ transitions to Reading, Writing, Math, and Science classes have been a huge success. They seem to be adjusting well to fourth grade curriculums and classroom expectations. We are off to a great start!

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Wow, we can’t believe our first week of school is done. Our vacation cobwebs have almost been completely removed and we are getting our learning groove back. We took the week to learn about each other and start to become a cohesive group. We developed our rules and norms for our classroom with everyone’s input. Next week, we will dive into learning, not the deep end, but slowly begin to get our feet wet.