June 1, 2022
It is hard to believe that we are nearing the end of the 2021/22 school year with only a couple of weeks remaining before summer vacation. Our students have been busy with end of year activities such as field days, class trips, concerts and special celebrations of learning. The end of the school year marks an important milestone in children’s lives and it is important to take time to reflect on and celebrate all that they have accomplished.
At the same time, it is important to recognize that the transition to summer can be difficult for many children and it is normal for them to feel sad or conflicted as they say goodbye to their teachers, classmates and friends. While some students eagerly look forward to summer activities, others may be anxious about losing the predictability of daily school routines and may have worries or fears about what the new school year will bring.
Teachers have many classroom activities planned to help students reflect on their journey over the past school year and to support them in ending the year successfully. There are also many things parents can do to help their child navigate this transition. If you are looking for some tips, a few things to consider include:
Talk to your child about how they are feeling- help them to look back on how they have grown and changed over the past year. What are they most proud of? What was their favorite memory from this school year? What is one thing that they can do now that they couldn’t do at the start of the year? What will they miss most?
Find a special way to mark the end of the year. Endings are just as important as beginnings for children. It doesn’t have to be a big event- have a family picnic, plan a game night, visit a playground or go for a hike. Acknowledging that something important is ending helps children process their experience and prepare for the start of something new.
Discuss summer plans with your child. How will their schedule change? What will a typical day be like? Routines are helpful for many children and knowing what to expect can help alleviate worries.
Help your child write a letter or make a card for their teacher or teachers. Having a way to express themselves can help children say goodbye to people that have played an important role in their life over the course of the school year.
If your child is worried about missing their friends, it can be helpful to schedule a time for them to get together or to highlight opportunities they will have to see classmates through camps, programs or other events.
As always, our teachers, administrators and school counselors are here to assist you if you have questions or need additional resources. Wishing all of our families a wonderful last few weeks of school!
Teacher and Class Gifts
If you are considering giving a gift to your child’s teacher over the next few weeks, it is important to be aware that teachers, as public employees, are subject to the Conflict of Interest Law. The general guidelines of this law prohibit teachers from accepting a gift worth over $50.00 from any individual student. Teachers are able to accept a class gift of up to $150.00 or several smaller gifts over the course of the year totaling no more than $150.00 for the year, as long as the gift is given from the class as a whole and no individual students' names are attached. Teachers are not allowed to accept any individual gifts from students who contributed to the class gift. Teachers are also allowed to accept gifts intended to be used in the classroom (i.e. books, supplies) without being in violation of the law. Please remember, you have already given us the gift of sharing your children with us throughout the school year! I am providing this information strictly to help room parents or others plan and to prevent any uncomfortable situations from arising.
Health and Wellness
Join me this summer in reading Thrivers, The Surprising Reasons Why Some Kids Struggle and Others Shine, by Michele Borba, Ed. D., and for 2 scheduled discussion groups. Sign up by June 13, 2022. For summer wellness information, including food access, activities and support resources, please take time to review the Summer Family Wellness Newsletter.
If you are interested in supporting a committee to plan and support parent wellness education programming for the four districts, please email me at email@example.com.
Wishing all families a healthy, safe and enjoyable summer!
Director of Wellness for Norfolk, Plainville, Wrentham & King Philip Schools
Norfolk Recreation Programs!
Local author and illustrator, Renée Kurilla, visited the HOD
Local author and illustrator, Renée Kurilla, visited the HOD school in person on May 26, thanks to An Unlikely Story.
Renée was very animated introducing her new graphic novel The Flower Garden to all students in grades K-2.