Cottonwood Creek Cougar Chronicle

May 4, 2020


I'd like to start by saying thank you for the kind emails, videos and messages on Friday. I didn't realize it was Principal Appreciation Day until I began viewing the various messages. Your thoughtfulness is appreciated.

We continue to wrap up the 2019-20 school year, while preparing for a successful start for 2020-21, and I would like to thank our students, staff, and parents who have worked together to make this such a successful year.

As we continue to plan for the next school year, I'd like to share with you a list of classroom teachers for the 2020-21 school year. This list is included below in this newsletter. We are excited to welcome some grade level and staff changes; and we will also be welcoming new staff members over the summer. A more comprehensive list of our staff will be shared when we return to work in August.

For families moving and/or transferring elementary schools for the 2020-21 school year, we request that you complete this form as soon as possible. Additionally, please remember to complete the online parent forms. All families must update their forms online. For more information about updating your parent forms please visit the CCSD District Admissions Website.

Thank you for your continued grace, support and partnership.


Katie Johnson


Big picture
Big picture
Big picture

Giving Tuesday Now on May 5th

Acknowledge teachers and school nurses with a tax deductible donation to the Cherry Creek Schools Emergency Relief Fund. The Foundation will email them with your personalized message of appreciation. Just make a donation of any amount in your honoree’s name, and the CCSF takes care of the rest. It is easy to give your tribute, go online


Although we are disappointed that our Fifth Grade ceremony won’t look the way we had planned this year, we are going to still come together as a school and community to recognize and celebrate the kids!

  • What: Celebrate our Cottonwood graduates in a car parade!
  • When: May 19th @ 4 PM
  • Where: Cottonwood Creek Bus Lanes and Parking Lot
  • How: We will be publishing more details soon, including start times by class!

*Stay tuned for details regarding the Kindie celebration.

Puzzle of the Week

Congrats to all of you clever thinkers who solved last week’s brain teaser.

Three doctors said that Bill was their brother. Bill said he had no brothers. How can this be?

Answer: The 3 doctors were Bill's sisters.

Here’s a new puzzle for you to ponder this week:

How many likes did Frank's photo get if only one of the following statements is true?

  • Frank's photo got at least 45 likes.
  • Frank's photo got fewer than 45 likes.
  • Frank's photo got at least 1 like.

Think you know the answer? Submit your best guess here.

Attention 2nd Graders

Join a Specials Teacher each day next week on Zoom! They will be available Monday through Friday next week from 12:00 PM to 12:30 PM to answer questions, share projects and just to have time to catch up and say 'hi". Students only.

Monday - Digital Media

Tuesday - Music

Wednesday -Art

Thursday - STEM

Friday - PE

Directions for accessing the Specials Google Classrooms by Grade Level

Big picture

From our Art Teacher, Mrs. Thompson

Mother’s Day is on May 10th and it’s time to celebrate your mom, bonus moms, mom figures, grandmas and all the other important “mom” people in your life! This week you have options to make your own cards, print out helper cards and even make a card that “explodes” when opened. See attached information for specifics and examples of the projects.

Second Grade Artists- Join Ms. Thompson this Wednesday on Zoom! Share a piece of art you have made and be ready for a game of Pictionary. I look forward to hanging out with you from 12:00 pm to 12:30 pm. I am also available to answer questions and to help with any of the art lessons.

Meeting ID: 915 449 621

Password: 9Hznfz

Big picture

From our STEM Teacher, Mr. Rogers

Greetings from STEM! I hope you are all well! This week we will continue to work in Scratch on the computer as well as getting ready for a tinfoil boat challenge. Check out Google Classroom for the details.

For the challenge you will need:

  • paper, pencil and a ruler
  • one 30cm by 30cm piece of aluminum foil
  • pennies (or other items you can float in your boat)
  • a sink or container to fill with water

Mr. Rogers

PE Post It


Welcome to our PE Lesson Week Six! I hope everyone can continue working out with their Fit Deck exercises. It is great to change up the four exercises to keep things fresh and exciting.

This week we will enjoy many Minute to Win It games and family challenges. Enjoy the competition and having fun. Post your video or photo on our Specials Google Classroom in the PE class section. I look forward to seeing your post.

Zoom Chat:

PE chat with 2nd Grade on Friday, May 8th!

Thank you,

Ms. Jehn

From our Music Teacher, Mr. Pedregon

Hello Cottonwood.

As we start of the lovely month of May, I hope everyone has survived the Justin Timberlake and Star Wars memesJ. In Music last week we were all about exploring and playing around with all the fun things you can do with Chrome Music Lab. Checking out some of your responses, it looked like you all had some fun! This week we’ll be using just the “Rhythm” tile in Chrome Music Lab and combining it with a few nursery rhymes in a very musical way. Depending on your grade level, you’ll have some different options on what you can do. Check out the assignment for more details!

As for this week’s Zoom at Noon with the specials teachers, we’ll be visiting with Second Grade. Second graders, tomorrow I’ll be available at noon to chat, hang out, and see how you’re doing!

Here’s the details:

Tuesday, May 5 @ 12:00

Meeting ID: 912 1993 9601

Password: music

See you there!

-Mr. Pedregon

From our Digital Media Teacher, Ms. Hammershaimb

Dear Cottonwood Creek Cougars and families,

It is with a sad heart that I share that I will not be returning to Cottonwood Creek Elementary School next school year due to changes in school staffing priorities as a result of reductions. I know this decision was not easily made, and trust that the choices made will ultimately benefit our school community.

I’m not entirely sure what next year will hold for me. As some of you may know, I have been pursuing an EdD in Educational Innovation. For the past four years, I have studied online learning for K12 students, and am currently working toward a dissertation. My research feels important and applicable these days.

I have treasured the time that I have been able to spend with you all. Cottonwood students – I have loved talking about books with you, watching your technology skills grow, and seeing your creativity take flight. Keep up the fantastic work! Families, I am grateful for how you welcomed and embraced me. Thank you for volunteering, supporting the book fair, and helping me prepare for the innovation space remodel. Your friendly smiles, encouragement and support have been a source of strength for me. I cherish my time at Cottonwood and will continue to think of you fondly.

Grateful for you,

Sarah Hammershaimb

You can find this week’s page on the digital media website here:

You can find this week’s digital media newsletter here:

You can find this week’s intro video here:


Thank you to everyone who submitted a joke of the week entry last week. This week’s selected joke comes from Gaige Gritzmacher in Mr. Wiersma's second grade class.

Why did the scientist put a knocker on his front door?

Scroll down for the answer.

Do you have a great joke that you think other Cottonwood Creek Cougars would enjoy hearing? Follow this link to submit your entry for the Joke of the Week. One joke will be chosen, and will appear in next week’s CCCC. Choose carefully because you can only submit one joke each week. Bring on the laughs!

Answer to Gaige's joke: becuase he wanted to win the "no bell" prize!

From our Mental Health Team

Hello Cottonwood Creek Cougar Parents,

As we get deeper into our remote learning and also closer to the end, I find myself frequently noticing that I am frequently taking deep breaths. This is hard! In my experience, my kids are becoming less engaged but needing my attention more. As I sit and try to work, they are calling me (if I had a quarter for every time I hear “mom” I’d be rich), fighting, and destroying my house! I have been working really hard to stay sane and keep my own mental health in mind. For me, I need to remember to breathe, I need to get outside as often as I can, I need to see my friends and family virtually, I need to not watch the news, and I need to read fun books. I sent a survey to our staff a few weeks ago and some of their answers of how they improve their mood are

Sending snail mail
Communicating with friends and family
Spending time outdoors
Practicing mindfulness
Baking or cooking
Spending time alone
Online learning
Sewing masks
Spending time with a pet
Watching a movie or a show
Doing needlepoint
Listening to music
Drawing, painting, or coloring
Social media/searching the internet
Getting organized
Playing with your kids
Zooming with students
Writing or journaling

I love this list that we came up with and encourage you all to make sure you are finding healthy ways to improve your mood, take care of yourself, and remember if you don’t put your oxygen mask on first you won’t be able to take care of others!

After you make sure you are breathing it is also so important to make sure our kids are doing okay. I am including a sheet of 9 Mental Health Activities to do with your Children. Remember, these can be good for you too!

Thank you so much for all you are doing right now to keep yourself and your kids going. Remember, if you need any support, do not hesitate to reach out to either me or Lauren. We are here for you!


Kori Shaiman, School Social Worker,

Lauren Alpert, School Psychologist,
Big picture

From our School Nurse

COVID-19 updates:

I found this short, 95 second, kid-appropriate video from the Colorado Department of Public Safety that shows why COVID-19 is like a pot of boiling pasta. It helps explain visually why we need to continue to reduce the spread of the virus.

Mask Mania! Have you been wearing a mask when you’re out in public? Seen some fun or funny masks? Maybe you even made your own? Send me a picture of your mask by May 8th, and tell me why it is special and you could win a prize.

Patti Rojec, MSN, RN, NCSN

School Nurse