Montrose Messenger

Montrose News, September - October 2019

September in Review

We have had a stellar school opening! Thank you for your support, presence, and communication with our team. Students are settling into their routines nicely thanks to the hard work of their teachers, classroom staff, and so many others - including YOU!

Weekly newsletters from teachers aim to provide you with a glimpse into what's happening in classrooms and school wide. Though some of the curriculum language may be unfamiliar, we will continue to walk you through understanding various aspects of Tools of the Mind. This education will be provided at PTA meetings, special family nights, in emails and at parent/teacher conferences.

We all look forward to a great year!

Mrs. Samuels

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PowerSchool Parent Portal

Approximately 30% of our families have completed the online forms required for our information:

  • Walking Trip Permission Slips
  • Publicity Consent Forms
  • Emergency Contact Information

If you have not completed these forms, please do so by Tuesday, October 8.


We are pleased to announce that the South Orange Maplewood School District is providing an online Parent Portal to all of our families. The Parent Portal can be used to view grades, attendance, and emergency contact information on file for your child. Please email to request your access ID and access password. You must email from an email address that we have on file.

Accessing The Parent Portal

1. Open an internet browser on your computer.

2. Navigate to the district homepage at

3. Select Quick Links > Parents > PowerSchool.

4. Before you login for the first time you must create an account. Click the button labeled “create an account”.

5. Enter your contact information and create a username and password. The password you select must be at least 8 characters long and is case sensitive. Please make note of this information, as it will be required on subsequent logins.

6. In the section labeled “Link Students to Account,” enter your child’s data (Provided through

7. Congratulations, your account is now created. You may now login.

Back To School / Welcome Packets

Information previously collected in the annual back to school / welcome packets are now collected online using the district’s parent portal. To access the portal and update your information, please follow the steps below:

1. Open an internet browser on your computer.

2. Navigate to the district homepage at

3. Select Quick Links > Parents > PowerSchool.

4. Login to the parent portal using your login credentials previously created.

5. Click on the “eCollect forms” on the left navigation menu.

6. Locate the forms within the category of “Annual Welcome Packet.”

7. Click on each form to complete the information requested.

Please note: You must complete the online forms for each of your students. After successfully completing the online forms, any subsequent changes must be made by the main office at your child’s school.

Need Assistance?

Many common issues can be resolved by viewing the district’s parent portal help page. Please visit the district website at Select Quick Links > Parents > PowerSchool Parent Portal Help.

If you need assistance accessing the parent portal, please email Provide as much detail as possible when explaining your issue. Please email from the account the district has on file for you. No information will be given over the phone.

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Curriculum Activity Spotlight - "I Have - Who Has"

I Have–Who Has Games:

All I Have–Who Has Games are designed for children to gain automaticity and thus fluency in a particular skill in both literacy and math. The games are motivating, played in small groups, and allow children to help one another.

I Have–Who Has Literacy Games are practiced in Small Group and include:

o Colors–– rapid naming of colors

o Names–– children learn classmates names

o Letters–– rapid letter naming

  • Uppercase letters

  • Lowercase letters

  • Upper and Lowercase letter matching

o Sounds–– Children name the sound the letter makes (not the name of the letter)

I Have–Who Has Math Games include:
o Numerals–– rapid naming of numbers
o Shapes–– rapid naming of shapes

Game Directions and Video:

To play the game, deal out all of the two-sided cards to all of the players in the group. At small group, we have the children lay out all of the cards on the table so they can see them. The first player chooses any card and reads it. For example, “I have 5. Who has 3?” (5 is on one side, 3 is on the other). That child places that card on the plate (a mediator), with the 3 facing upward and everyone looks at their cards to see if they have a number 3. The person who does then says, “I have 3. Who has 6?” That child places their card on the plate with the number on the back of their card facing upward, and so on. Play continues until all of the cards are on the plate. It shouldn’t matter which card you begin the game with– just make sure all of the cards as used even if you have a few. At the end of the game, the bottom number and top number should be the same. Here are cards you can print to play one version of the game at home.

Create your own cards with letters, colors, photographs of theme related items, body parts, kitchen items... have fun with it!

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Week of Respect 2019

The Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act (P.L.2010, c.122) requires that the week beginning with the first Monday in October of each year (October 7-11, 2019) be designated as the Week of Respect in New Jersey. To recognize the importance of social and emotional learning and character education, Montrose has planned the following events:

  • Daily - "Just Say Hello" We will acknowledge the power of "Hello" and how that spoken word can truly make someone's day better. Each class will learn to say "hello" in a different language each day of the week.
  • Monday - "Clouds of Kindness" Teachers will explain to students many different ways of being kind to others. Students will draw pictures of different ways to be kind and show respect. The pictures will be drawn on the shape of a cloud to complete a rainbow mural.
  • Tuesday - "Mural of Colorful Hands" Rainbows make people smile! So we will begin to understand why it’s important to "Be a Rainbow in Someone Else's Cloud". Each class has chosen a color of the rainbow and will create handprints of that particular color. In order to ensure a sensory aspect, this work will be done using paint, glitter, sand or some other material etc... We will share a photo of Dr. Angelou and paraphrase her "Rainbow" message in a developmentally appropriate manner.
  • Thursday - "Reading Train". At 9:00 AM, we will start the day's activities by simultaneously reading books about kindness and respect.
  • Friday - Students and staff will wear a shirt representing their color of the rainbow. All students and staff will participate in a "Respect Parade" around the school, weather permitting. If there is inclement weather, we will parade inside the school. Marshall students will be transported to Montrose for this event.
The class colors are:

Ms. Julia and Ms. Corredor - Red

Mrs. Lane and Ms. Mikita - Orange

Ms. Stacey and Mrs. Pasko - Yellow

Ms. Simpkins and Ms. Betsy: Green

Ms. Kelly: Blue (Royal)

Ms. Goliszeski: Indigo (Navy)

Ms. Patty: Violet (Purple)

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Fire Safety 2019

We have planned to meet our friends from the South Orange Fire Department and learn fire safety tips in October. The firefighters will visit both schools, change into their fire gear and share a few tips that will help children make safe choices and seek help if it is ever needed. If time permits, students will get a tour of a fire engine.

As you travel about town, we encourage you to visit your nearest fire station to say hello. Maybe you'll get a personalized tour!

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Handwashing Routines for Healthy Schools

This video will show you the hand washing technique we have been following and teaching children. We reinforce the importance of hand washing as a significant preventive measure for reducing the spread of germs. Properly washed hands are key to the health of children and staff in preschool programs. Handwashing occurs several times per day:

  • Upon arrival to the classroom
  • Upon re-entry to the classroom after being outside
  • Before and after eating
  • After toileting and/or diaper/underwear changing
  • Before and after sand or water play
Please continue to support our community's health by helping children wash hands properly.

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Nurse's Notes

This is a reminder about Flu shots!

*The Flu Vaccine is required for all children age 6 months through 59 months who attend Pre-School.*

It is mandatory that the vaccine be given between September 1st and December 31st of each year.

We MUST receive your documentation of Influenza Vaccination before we leave for Holiday recess on December 20, 2019, or your child will not be able to return to school on January 2, 2020.

Be sure to get the flu vaccine as soon as possible to protect your child from getting influenza. If your child receives any other immunizations, please remember to send in the records from your health care provider as well as paperwork regarding medication to be given while in school.

Thank you!

Nurse Steffi

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Hispanic Heritage Month 2019

Hispanic heritage encompasses a rich history of Spanish-speaking countries, and the contributions that Americans of Hispanic descent have on our lives. Hands-on activities, art experiences and exposure to rich literature can teach young children about Hispanic culture in a way that they can understand. Hispanic Heritage Month is observed from September 15 to October 15, but these activities will be incorporated year-round at Montrose.
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Halloween Parade at Montrose - October 31, 2019 at 1:45 PM

This time of year and event are exciting and special to many. It may also be an overwhelming sensory experience for some. With that, we appreciate your continued support in ensuring that we remain focused on students and their safety & well-being.

In order to be inclusive and remain focused on students, class events may focus on Autumn, rather than Halloween. There will not be class parties that involve guests or food. If your child will not be participating in or watching the parade, please let their teacher know as soon as possible.


Costumes are not required. If your child chooses to have one, they should bring costumes, not wear them to school. We will get the children dressed in costumes. We prefer those that go over their clothing. Face paint/makeup can be applied before coming to school.

No simulated “weapons” are allowed. This includes swords, sabers, etc. Children must be able to see clearly, so only masks that allow unobstructed vision will be allowed. Costumes that drag on the ground will not be permitted. In order to avoid unnecessary upset for the students, please be sure to try on costumes at home a few days before 10/31.


We anticipate that the parade will take approximately 20 minutes.

We will exit the main door of the building (using the ramp), then walk clockwise around the building from that point. We will make a right on the sidewalk towards Clark Street, walk on Clark Street across the front of the school, make a right into the secondary parking lot, up the stairs and onto the path towards Meeker. We will then walk along the sidewalk on Meeker, back into the yard (using the gate farthest from the playground), across the yard and up the stairs into the main entrance of the building. Families who desire to view the parade will be able to see the children from any spot along this route.


We ask that you keep all sidewalks and walking paths clear for the duration of the parade.

Family members may not take students from their lines, join classes on the walk or block our walking route. All students participating in the parade will re-enter the building after the parade for a regular 2:30 dismissal. If you anticipate early dismissal, please pick your child up before 1:15 PM. Please note that students dismissed prior to the parade will not participate in the parade. If your child is participating, we ask that you plan for a regular 2:30 dismissal on Halloween. This will allow us time to get children settled and prepared. We know that children thrive when routines are in place and consistent. The more predictable their routines, the better they react.


Fun, seasonal activities will be planned for any students not participating in or watching the parade.

Because all school day bus travel must be completed prior to 1:30PM, Marshall preschoolers will participate in the Marshall School parade. Though the walk around the school grounds is a bit longer It's also a fun event. The time will be sent to you in a separate email.

If there is inclement weather, the parade will be canceled. All families will be notified of cancellation via SchoolMessenger email by 10:30 am.

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October Dates to Remember

October 8 - PTA Meeting at Montrose 8:45 AM in the Staff Lounge

October 9 - Schools Closed (Yom Kippur)

October 15 - Half Day for all students

October 16 - South Orange Fire Department visits MECC

October 18 - School Spirit Day: Dress Like a Superhero

October 22 - Picture Day at Montrose

October 31 - Halloween Parades