South Oaks School

February 2023

A Great Month to Read

I am writing this on a day when schools are closed due to the extreme cold weather. It is very easy to get a little bored when we are staying inside due to storms and cold weather. This is why February is perfect for I Love to Read Month. Reading is the best activity when everything outside is frozen! However, a few other benefits also come to mind.

Since mental health has become extremely important for us and our loved ones, reading can help people to experience a calm moment in their day. This sense of calm is harder and harder to find and it is important for kids (and adults) to know what calm actually feels like. A calm and safe experience, such as reading, provides a reference for kids when they are upset, so they know that calm is possible! In this way, reading helps us to "lend our calm" to our kids.

Kids also need a warm and nurturing connection with the adults in their lives. Reading encourages such a connection by sitting close and listening to engaging stories together. Kids can engage their imagination and creativity, hear the regulating voice of mom or dad as they read to them and enjoy some much needed learning language in the process.

I am sure there are many more benefits to reading, not to mention future success! However, the point is that we highlight reading in school because it is so important for all of us. I hope that you will find ways to instill a love of reading and the importance of reading in your children. Do it in ways that works best for them. Perhaps some of our ideas can help to get things started.

Enjoy a good book!
Dale Martens


Dates to Remember - needs to be updated

Feb. 3: Admin/PD Day - No classes

Feb. 9: Horse Drawn Sleigh Rides (students only)

Feb. 14: Valentine's Day - In class activities only

Feb. 14: Community Health Clinic in Hut #1

Feb. 20: Louis Riel Day - No classes

Feb. 21-24: South Oaks Scholastic Book Fair

Feb. 23: Grade 4's sing at the Manitoba Moose game

Feb. 24: Admin Day - No classes

Feb. 28: Community Health Clinic in Hut #1

Feb. 28: Indigenous Education with Elder Leclair

I Love to Read Month Activities

Our Literacy Team has been putting together a few plans for I Love To Read Month which is soon to begin on Wednesday Feb. 1st! Once again, we are asking parents to participate in a Reading at Home bingo game. Meanwhile, teachers at the school will focus on providing quality reading instruction for your child each day, so they can keep moving forward.

The Bingo Game includes 25 tasks to be done at home. We would like to encourage each child to do each task for a minimum of 10 minutes. Once a task is done, they can colour in the square. A completed sheet = 1 BINGO for the class. Every class that has at least 75% of their students with a completed Bingo sheet will be awarded a Donut Party for reading for the WHOLE/HOLE month!

We wanted to add a new bit of fun, so we are also introducing a calendar for Dress Up Days. For each Tuesday and Thursday in February, students are invited to dress up according to the theme of that day. For example, "Reading Jogs the Mind" - wear exercise clothing. This is totally optional but is relatively easy and is guaranteed fun! We will try to remind students the night before to dress up if they want to.

The Read At Home Bingo and Dress Up Calendar will be sent home on Jan. 31 with your child. The students have until Feb 28th to complete the sheets and hand them back to their teacher (by Mar.1 at the latest). We hope to encourage students to work hard at their reading, but also to have fun practicing during I Love to Read month. Thanks for participating!

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Scholastic Book Fair Coming Soon!

We are looking forward to hosting an in-person Book Fair this year! There will also be an online shopping option, so you can shop from the comfort of your home if you prefer. Click on this link to access convenient online shopping. Students will be invited to browse the Book Fair as a class on February 17 as part of their school day, during their class allotted time. Open to the public Book Fair dates are February 21 - 24 from 8:45 am - 3:45 pm. Please pop in to check it out for yourselves anytime during the week or come on February 24 (no school day) with your child!

There will be some draws to enter to win as well as a great selection of books and gadgets to purchase. All purchases directly benefit our school. Any item we sell out of can be ordered and will be delivered to the school to be distributed at a later date.