Jackson Jottings

October 2019, Volume 1

October Calendar at a Glance

  • 1st - Flu Shot Clinic, 4:30-7:30 (Howard Cluster at Jackson)
  • 2nd - Picture Day
  • 4th - Grandparents/Special Friends Day (K-2 is 9:30-10:45, 3-5 is 1:30-2:45)
  • 7th - Fundraiser Starts
  • 15th - Fun Run (K-1 is 9:00-10:00, 4-5 is 10:30-11:30, 2-3 is 1:15-2:15), Visitors Welcome!
  • 16th-18th - NO SCHOOL
  • 25th - Kindergarten ONLY Breakfast, 7:30-8:15 (Music Room)


It’s so great to have Jackson full of students again! We have had a wonderful start to the year and can’t thank you enough for all do you help students get ready for the year and all the learning they will do. We are all looking forward to the best year yet!

One challenge we currently have at Jackson is that we are short several para educator positions. If you might be interested in being part of the Jackson team, please consider joining us to work with students in our special services department. Feel free to contact me any time if I can share any details about these positions.

Have a great school year!

Dr. Kevin Bjerken, Principal



Please drop off your kids by the lower area stop sign in the upper lot. For the safety of all of our students, please remain in the line of cars and let children out of the right side of the car onto the sidewalk. If you are dropping by upper entrance please stay in line of cars, have your child get out on the sidewalk side, and do no pull any further ahead than the last sign before the entrance (there needs to be enough room for our upper buses and school vehicles to pull in right by entrance). If you park in the lot, please walk your children across the driveway to the sidewalk. Students should not be walking from the parking lot through the crosswalk unaccompanied.

Please do not drop off before 8:10 AM. Thank you!

A Note From The District Office

Beginning in the 2020-21 school year, our district will have new attendance areas for East Middle School and West Middle School. The current attendance areas for our middle schools (former junior highs) have been in place since the 2011-12 school year. The three elementary schools with the most students (Eagle Creek, Jackson & Sweeney) primarily feed into West Middle School. The two smaller elementary schools (Red Oak & Sun Path) primarily feed into East Middle School.

Growth patterns within the district over the last nine years have led to a growing difference in the number of students at each of our middle schools. The student count difference between East and West is currently 427 students and projected at more than 400 into the future if attendance areas stay the same. West Middle School is more than 100 students over capacity. East Middle School is about 300 students below capacity. The difference in size of each school presents some challenges in the way our schools operate including pressure on common areas, challenges in the teaming structure for teachers, and core staffing.

There are several opportunities to learn more and give input. Please visit our website for information on upcoming information sessions: https://www.shakopee.k12.mn.us/Page/9929 If you have any questions, please email communications@shakopee.k12.mn.us

Would you like to be a volunteer?

Thank you to the many volunteers who have signed up to help so far this year at Jackson. We are looking for volunteers to help out in our workroom whenever it works for you. Please stop in and take a look at our project bin. You can even sign out a project and complete it at home and send it back to school.

If you plan to volunteer in a classroom or on a field trip please fill out the volunteer information online at at: https://apps.raptortech.com/Apply/MzIxNzplbi1VUw==

Thank you for all you do to help our staff and students!

Jennifer Klecker

Jackson Volunteer Site Coordinator



Nurse Notes by Nurse Andrea

Are Your Kids Getting Enough Sleep?

Parents are responsible for a list of things to ensure their child stays healthy. And at times, that list can seem huge and overwhelming; eat healthy foods, get some exercise, limit screen time, get to bed on time while getting the homework done etc. etc. So sometimes, the importance of sleep is at the bottom of that list. We all NEED sleep, but why? And how much do our kids need?

Why do we need sleep?

Sleep provides an opportunity for the body to repair and rejuvenate itself. These hours of rest help us to revive energy, maintain chemical balances to create better moods, stabilize chemical imbalances, and even ensure that the body is working at its best capabilities to ward off disease. Not getting enough sleep weakens your immune system and increases our risk of getting sick. Kids that don’t get enough sleep possibly won’t grow as well, because sleep helps us regulate all of our hormones, including the growth hormone. Also when we are sleep deprived, we may feel MORE hungry and crave sugar.

What happens if I skip a few nights of sleep?

Skipping 1 night's sleep makes a person cranky and clumsy. After missing 2 nights of sleep, a person will have problems thinking and doing things; his or her brain and body can't do their normal tasks nearly as well. After 5 nights without sleep, a person will hallucinate (this means seeing things that aren't actually there). Eventually, it becomes impossible for the brain to give its directions to the rest of the body without sleep.

How would this affect my child at school?

A school assignment that's normally easy may feel impossible, or they may feel clumsy and easily frustrated while playing a sport or instrument. Researchers found that our ability to think quickly and clearly, solve math problems, remember details, and perform some physical tasks are diminished when we’re

sleep deprived. Poor or inadequate sleep can lead to mood swings, behavioral problems such as hyperactivity and cognitive problems that impact your child’s ability to learn in school.

How much sleep does my child need?

Most kids between the ages of 5 and 12 years old need 9½ to 11 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night to leave their bodies and minds rejuvenated for the next day. If sleep is cut short, they wake up less prepared to concentrate, make decisions, or engage fully in school and social activities. *See the chart provided at the end of the article.

Kids 13-18 years old need at least 8½ hours—and on average 9¼ hours of sleep.

What can I do to help my child sleep?

Get organized for the next day before going to bed. If their lunch is packed and their backpack is ready to go, you can rest easy and you don't have to rush around in the morning.

Don't have a TV in your bedroom. Research shows that kids who have one in their rooms sleep less. And the light from the TV can stimulate the brain. In fact, turning off TV, cell phones and video games 60 min before bed will help quiet the brain and get it ready for bed.

Create a relaxing routine. Follow the same bedtime routine each night, such as taking a warm shower, listening to music, or reading. Doing this can get their body and mind ready for a peaceful night of sleep.

Limit foods and drinks that contain caffeine! These include some pop and chocolate.

Andrea Richards

School Nurse



Art Lines from Mr. Olson

Greetings from the Art Department!

Warning!!! Art class can be messy! SEND AN ART SHIRT WITH YOUR STUDENT!

Well, we are off to another great start this year in the art room. Our Kindergarteners have been learning their colors and working on their painting skills! The 1st graders have been learning about warm and cool colors. They will be coming home with a nice fall leaf painting soon. The 2nd graders have been working on mixing their colors and have also been learning about how to use warm and cool colors in a night sky painting. The 3rd graders have been working on mixing intermediate colors. The 4th and 5th grade students are working on a contour line drawing/painting unit. This will include a combination of representational art and non-representational art. Not sure what that is? Ask a 4th or 5th grader : )!

3rd, 4th and 5th grade students bring their supply box with them when they have art. This includes markers, crayons, a pencil, and an eraser. They should also have a journal/sketchbook with them when they come to art class.

We hope everyone has had a great start to the year and we look forward to seeing you around the building!

Mr. Olson



Mrs. Hall


Jackson Art Specialists

Big picture

Music "Notes"

By: Sari Flatness


Mark your Calendars for Music Programs!

Kindergarten: Friday, March 13th at 2:00p.m.

1st grade: Friday, February 21st at 2:00p.m.

2nd grade: Friday, December 6th at 2:00p.m. “The Nutcracker Suite”

3rd grade: Friday, November 15th at 2:00p.m. “Veteran’s Day Celebration”

4th grade: Friday, April 17th at 2:00p.m. “Minnesota Musicians”

5th grade: Monday, May 11th at 6:30p.m. Band and General Music program

All Music program will take place in the Jackson gymnasium. All families are welcome to attend and we look forward to sharing our music with you! If you choose to take your child home after the program, please let your classroom teacher know ahead of time.
Programs usually last around 45 minutes.

**Door for afternoon programs will open by 1:45p.m.

A "Note" from Band

By: Diane Markovich


Hello Jackson Band Parents/Guardians! I am excited to have your child in band, and to be the Long-Term Sub for Julie Lund. We have been busy getting started with our instruments, and are looking forward to starting full group band! This happens Oct. 3-7, depending on which band group your child is in. Each band student will be receiving their band lesson scheduled time by Oct. 3. I can be reached for questions at any time: dmarkovich@shakopee.k12.mn.us

Please mark these scheduled concert dates on your calendars:

Saturday, March 21st — All District Band Concert at 4:00 pm (Shakopee Senior High) AND Monday, May 11th — Jackson 5th Grade Music Program at 6:30 pm (Jackson Gym).

I am looking forward to a great school year of music making!

Big picture

Physical Education Fun with Mr. Casey, Mrs. Tanberg, & Mr. Koening

Our students at Jackson Elementary have been busy getting used to a new school year, with new teachers, and most importantly new friends.

In physical education class, we have already completed our introduction/rules unit as well as our soccer unit. In October, we will be doing our football and fitness testing units.

Soccer is a popular sport at Jackson Elementary School. Students were introduced to skills such as: the foot trap, knee trap, chest trap, heading the ball, dribbling, passing, positions and rules of the game. All of our classes played various lead up and small sided soccer games.

Our football unit focuses on how to properly grip, throw, and catch a football. We talk about some football positions and the difference between offense and defense. We play great games like capture the football and endzone football during our football unit at Jackson.

We will be starting our fall Fitness Testing soon. Students are required to be tested twice a year in the mile run (cardiovascular endurance), sit and reach (flexibility), curl-ups (abdominal strength), and the push-ups (upper body strength). These scores are used to determine if they are within the healthy fitness zone standards based on gender and age compared to students across the country.

Fitness is a main goal of our Physical Education Department, but we need your help at home. Please set up a fitness plan with your child and exercise with them daily at home. Students should receive exercise for at least 20 minutes per day.

If you have any questions please call or stop by and visit our Physical Education Class, you are always welcome!

Mr. Jeff Casy (jcasey@shakopee.k2.mn.us)

Mrs. Susan Tanberg (stanberg@shakopee.k12.mn.us)

Mr. Dan Koenig (dkoenig@shakopee.k12.mn.us)

If anyone has some old tennis shoes that they would like to donate to the Physical Education Department it be greatly appreciated. We have students who do not have tennis shoes to wear for physical education and we would like to give them a pair. Please make sure the tennis shoes are clean and free of rips and tears.

Greetings from the Learning Commons!

Hello Jackson families!

We are off to a fast start in the Media Center! Students have already had a chance to browse and check out some great books to start our school year. The Book Fair is quickly approaching at Jackson. Our school Book Fair will be during the three parent-teacher conference nights in November. This a great way for families to purchase new books for home, purchase books to donate to classroom teachers, and for our school to earn money to purchase new books and supplies for our Media Center. The Book Fair will be held on November 19th, 21st, and 25th. Jackson has always been lucky enough to have wonderful parent volunteers for these nights. Please be on the lookout for volunteer sign up information.

Media Classes:

Grades K-2 have been working on practicing Jackson Pride in Media. This includes modeling how to take care of books, how to keep our Media Center running smoothly, and how to use technology responsibly. Not only have we read really great books during our class lessons, but students have also started using iPads and SeeSaw to show their thinking. Be sure to check out your child’s SeeSaw account to see what we’ve been up to!

Grades 3-5 have also been refreshing our understanding of Jackson Pride in Media and how to put those expectations into practice. We’ve been revisiting the layout of our library and focusing on different genres of books that our school has to offer. Students have also been using iPads to complete scavenger hunts, reading interest surveys, and genre reviews. Students have also been logging into MackinVIA – our digital library – to browse ebooks and other electronic data bases. This is something that can be accessed from home as well!

SAVE THE DATE: NOVEMBER 19th, 21st, and 25th for the BOOK FAIR

By: Betsi Arvin (Media Specialist)


Learning Commons: Digital Learning Highlight

Students and teachers are excited to share their learning with you at home. We encourage every family to sign up with Seesaw to follow your child's learning journey.

  • What can you expect to see in Seesaw? Every teacher's approach to Seesaw is different which impacts what is posted and the frequency of the posts. However, you should expect to see a combination of things that include samples of your students daily work, creative projects that your child has completed, class photos, and possible messages from the teacher.
  • How do I sign up? If you are not following your child in Seesaw, contact your child's teacher. The teacher can print out the enrollment letter and code for you.
  • What devices does Seesaw Family work on? It works on ALL devices. If you have a smartphone or tablet, you can find the FREE Seesaw Families app in the app store. You can also use the web version on a computer.
  • Why does Shakopee use Seesaw? The purpose of Seesaw is twofold. First it is digital portfolio of your child's work in our elementary schools. Their work follows them from year to year. As a parent you can view ANY of their Seesaw posts during their K-5 time in Shakopee Schools. It provides a great way to look back on their growth and makes it easy to celebrate their growing knowledge and skills. The second purpose of Seesaw is to be a communication tool. Seesaw offers a view into the classroom for you to be more informed about what your child is learning.

Natalie Weatherman (Digital Learning Coach)



Hello Jackson Families!

Happy Fall!!! I hope you all have had a wonderful start to the school year and are getting adjusted to the busy days and schedules! September was a busy but great month for the PTO. We had our Fall picnic which was a great event despite the inclement weather. We also had a fantastic turn out for our first meeting of the year. Superintendent Mike Redmond was our speaker. It was informative and great to meet him and hear from him.

October is going to be even more busy and exciting! We have our Grandparents/special friend day on October 4. This event has historically had a huge turnout and is so much fun! Hopefully you have received fliers in your child’s folder which will have more details about this event.

On October 7, we have our pep rally and kick off for our one big fundraiser for the year. After much consideration we decided to partner with boosterthon again this year to put on this awesome event. Boosterthon staff will be at our school working with our students and staff everyday from October 7 until October 14. They educate the children on important character traits in a super fun format to make learning and building on their social/emotional skills exciting. They provide our school staff with resources to use in their curriculum year round if they chose to do so. Most importantly they encourage the kids to be super excited about being physically active and healthy all while helping support our school. I was fortunate enough to spend the day at the event last year and it was exciting. If weather is good, I strongly encourage family to come cheer on their student and experience this event. The fun run takes place on Tuesday, October 14. Kindergarten and 1st graders will be running from 9-10, 4th and 5th graders will be running from 10:30-11:30, and 2nd and 3rd graders will run from 1:15-2:15. You will be receiving much more details about the fundraiser in the next couple weeks. In the case of inclement weather on the day of the event, we will have to move the event indoors which will still be an amazing event for our students but we would not be able to accommodate family members coming to cheer on their students unfortunately.

Also in October the PTO will be hosting a Kindergarten Breakfast for Kindergarteners and their families. It was a huge hit last year. It will take place in the large music room on October 25 from 7:30-8:15 am. A light breakfast will be provided and time for families to meet their kindergartner’s friends and their families. More info will be coming home with your kindergartner on this event.

If you have any questions or are interested in learning more about your PTO, please email me at jacksonPTO28@gmail.com We share a ton of info on our Facebook page- Jackson Parents and we are starting to share information and pictures on Instagram, follow us at jacksonparentsPTO.

As always thank you for supporting our Jackson Community and Happy Summer everyone,

Kjersta Hoffman

PTO President



Big picture