Fiske Monthly News

March 2018


Welcome to the home of the Fiske monthly news! We feature great news and updates by grade level and specialist teachers to help keep you informed about what our students are learning. Enjoy your reading!
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News from The Principal, Thomas Martellone

Busy Spring

It is hard to believe that we are already into April and before you know it, May will be here. While the weather may not be signaling spring, our end of the year pace has picked up a bit and we know it has arrived. Thank you to those families that submitted placement information. Staff will use that to thoughtfully place children in next year's classrooms, working to make the very best fit possible.

As we get further into spring, students and families will become busier and teachers will work to help students learn as much as possible with the competing demands that spring traditionally brings; sports, better weather, end of year transitions, etc. Our work and our goal is always to teach children at high levels, while also helping them navigate those end of year stressors so that they enjoy their experiences at Fiske.

Please be sure to reach out to your child/ren(s) teacher should you find that your child is having a difficult time with the end of year demands. We want to make sure that we are supporting them in every way that we can.

Online MCAS

Students and teachers have been doing a great job of navigating the new, online MCAS this year. Last year, fourth grade students were the first to participate in taking the test online, along with one grade in middle school. This year, fifth grade is also taking the test online as well, and next year, third grade will round out the elementary grades and everyone will participate in MCAS online. We've been fortunate that teachers have done a wonderful job of keeping anxiety down, and students in grades 3, 4, and 5 all have their own computers to use on a regular basis, which has helped prepare them for the computer based nuances associated with the assessment.

A huge thank you to Mr. Baker who coordinates all of the MCAS materials, and also a big shout out to Mrs. Rhodes and the tech department for all of their support.

"Spring Cleaning"

In case you did not know, our school benefits from the white clothing recycling bin that is near the cross walk at the bus loop at Fiske. Each month, the recycling company comes around and we get a percentage of money based on the weight of the bin. If you are thinking that you need to do some spring cleaning with clothes that have been outgrown or no longer of use, be sure to bring them to they recycling bin! Thank you!

News from the Assistant Principal, Brian Baker

Dear Fiske Families and Friends,

It’s hard to believe that this month we will be having our final week long vacation before we end the school year for the summer! I must say... our students continue to work very hard this school year and are certainly deserving of some time off. We are proud of each and every Fiske student! I hope you all enjoy the vacation!

As many of you may already know, Light It Up Blue takes place each April 02, 2018. Light It Up Blue is dedicated to raising awareness of autism. Autism Speaks, the world's largest autism science and advocacy organization, announced the launch of the inaugural Light It Up Blue campaign in 2010. This initiative is intended to raise international awareness of autism as a growing public health crisis in support of World Autism Awareness Day and Autism Awareness Month in the United States.

April is Autism Awareness Month, which is quite significant in our school community. We strive every day to be inclusive of all ages, genders, ethnic backgrounds, and learning styles. Please refer to the two websites below (Autism Speaks and Autism Society) that each recognize Autism Awareness Month and can give you more information. We encouraged all students to wear something blue for “Light It Up Blue” Day on April 2!


Mr. Baker

Kindergarten News, from Mrs. Button, Mrs. Maestri and Mrs. Shanahan

Life Cycles

The kindergarten classrooms were surely the most exciting places to be in Fiske School during the month of April! Each classroom hatched and cared for baby chicks. The science unit began upon the arrival of 12 chick eggs per classroom. The children learned that we used the incubators to do the hens’ job: to keep the eggs warm (100º F) for 21 days. Every day we read books and discussed the development of the chicks. We counted down the days with a paper chain, and examined a poster that illustrated what the chicks should look like each day during their development.

We “candled” the eggs as the chicks were developing inside the eggs. This means that we put a flashlight up against the egg in a dark room (the bathroom!) to see the shadows inside the egg. We were able to see the chick’s shadow, the chick’s movement, the air space inside the egg, and veins! It was amazing.

Finally, after 20 and 21 days inside the incubators, some of our baby chicks hatched! The children could see how wet and exhausted the chicks were after all of their hard work!

The children helped care for the chicks by providing grain and water, keeping the lamp on for heat, and giving them plenty of love and affection! After spending a few days with the children, they were ready to go back to Drumlin Farm.

Throughout the unit, the children wrote and drew illustrations of what they were observing and learning in their chick journals. This journal is sure to be a keepsake of a wonderful kindergarten memory!

Grade One News, from Mrs. Shew, Mrs. Torpey, and Mrs. Wallace

Just like that, it is April! It was lovely meeting with all of you for conferences! The first grade teachers love meeting in April to share all of the progress the students have made throughout the year!

As we are sure you have heard, the American Symbols play is coming up! After April vacation we will start our formal practices. We are so excited to share this with all of you on the morning on May 25th. The show will be held in the Fiske Gym and 9:00. If you or someone you know would love to video this for us to enjoy afterwards, we would be very grateful! Please let your child’s teacher know.

We have begun a poetry unit in writing recently. We are working on a few “big ideas” about poetry. Poetry is artful writing. Poets think, talk and write about things in the world in unique ways. And poets use words and language in creative ways to describe ordinary things. We will work with poems and songs and have a focus on rhythm, rhyme, and voice.

In reading, we are wrapping up our unit called “Readers Have Big Jobs to Do”. The children focused a lot of their work on reading strategies to try with tricky words and stopping when mistakes are made. The first graders are great at thinking while they are reading, “Does it make sense? Does it sound right? Does it look right?”

Very shortly, we will begin our next unit in math. “Reason with Shapes and Their Attributes”. Children will be responsible for describing attributes for a shape. They will use pattern blocks to model how two-dimensional shapes can be combined to make a new shape. They will also do a little work with relationships among halves, fourths, quarters and whole shapes.

We hope you all enjoy your April vacation with family and friends. Don’t forget to enjoy a good book together as a

Grade Two News from Mrs. Carter, Mrs. Dinsmore, Mrs. Gobiel, and Mrs. Johnson

April Showers bring Bright Learners…. Especially in 2nd Grade!

Spring is bringing with it a deluge of learning opportunities for eager learners in the form of exciting units of study. From arrays, multiplication and graphing data to partner series book club reading and writing gripping fiction stories. We will be keeping ourselves very busy over the next few weeks.

In our next MATH UNIT will discover the relationship between repeated addition and multiplication. We will also touch upon using the concept of halves to show division. Collection of data to be represented in bar and pictographs is another skill we will be working on as well.

WRITING GRIPPING FICTIONAL NARRATIVES is one of the children’s favorite types of writing, as well as mine. They will be creating fiction stories where their imagination can take flight. We will spend the month of April learning how to write this style while staying focused on the structure of the story itself.

As book club members, READING SERIES BOOKS, students will learn that series books have predictable characters and patterns. They will notice how books within a series can be compared and contrasted many ways. Students will also see how authors use craft moves to convey special meaning.

We are continuing to grow our knowledge about India in Social Studies. Some of our focus is on the location of India and some of its major geographic features, schooling, language, symbols, and climate. Students reflect on essential questions such as “how does where you live affect how you live? How are cultures alike and different from each other? This unit will carry through into mid-April.

Towards the end of the month we will begin our final SCIENCE UNIT: Nature’s Partners. Here students will learn that the Earth supports a wide diversity of life, and that all living things depend on their surroundings and other living things to get food, air, space, water, and shelter in order to grow and reproduce. They will also get to see how Interactions between plants and animals change during their life cycles.

Please continue to read at home with your students and/or make your students are reading at least 15 minutes every day. Continue asking questions about their current book or passage i.e.

What is the setting of this story?

Why do you think the author wrote this book?

To persuade, inform or entertain the reader.

What is the main idea?

What are the details?

Along with curriculum units, 2nd grade is continuing to learn routines that will help us as we move through the grades and become independent learners. Morning and afternoon expectations help us remember things we need to do each day and prepare us for our lessons or to go home for our afternoon activities.

One final thought on these rainy days of spring please remind your children of dressing for the weather and checking that they have all the clothing and shoes they came to school with. Feel free to come in with them to check our lost and found.

Grade Three News from Mrs. Aufiero, Mr. Halfond, Mrs. Owen and Ms. Williams

We are thrilled that Spring has arrived, and look forward to many new beginnings in our learning!


The third grades have concluded our unit on Measurement and Data and have started a new unit on Rounding and Extending Facts. The children are using their knowledge of place value to round to the nearest 10 and 100, practicing their fluency with multiplication facts, and solving multi-step word problems using the four operations (+, -, x, /).

The students consistently use the following step-by-step process for solving multi-step word problems:

1) Read the problem.

2) Retell word problem in your own words.

3) Underline the question you need to answer.

4) Circle the unit that needs to be included in your answer.

5) Write a number sentence that matches the number story. Draw an empty box for the unknown.

6) Solve the problem. Fill in the empty box with the missing value.

7) Answer the question with the correct unit labeled.

8) Reread the question to be sure you answered the right question, and check that the answer makes sense.

Our hope is that the children internalize these steps, and use them with automaticity as they tackle every word problem!


We have recently concluded our unit on Biographies.

Reading for Tests is our new focus. As part of this unit, the children are learning that some questions have answers explicitly stated in the text, while others require readers to infer based on clues in the text.

As we rehearse “reading for tests,” students are learning to:

1) Preview the entire selection, including the introduction in italics and any text features.

2) Slow down their reading pace, and/or reread, making sure to monitor their comprehension.

3) Go back to the test to find evidence for answers.

On April 24th and 25th third graders will take the English Language Arts portion of the MCAS. We are aiming to familiarize the students with the format of the test and reassure them that it is not as tricky as they think it will be. We hope that the children will develop comfort with test taking while learning some important reading strategies and skills.


Informational Writing

During Writer’s Workshop the children have been planning and drafting informational writing pieces. Every student chose a topic that he/she feels knowledgeable and enthusiastic about. Through various writing exercises and lessons, the students are learning how to plan, organize, revise, and refine their topics. They are being very thoughtful about the chapter topics (subtopics) and how they can effectively present the information.


We have recently been learning about the Water Cycle and Weather. Hopefully these topics have fostered great dinner table conversations. Ask your child what the difference is between weather and climate. Also, how does climate and where they live affect their lives? (Ex.: “How would your life be different if we moved to ____?”).

The third grade is an especially exciting place to be because we have launched our unit on “Mystery Powders!” Our third grade scientists are comparing, contrasting and testing the chemical and physical properties of five “mystery powders.” The children make predictions, careful observations, record their results, and modify their predictions based on their evidence. The culminating test will be to identify these mystery powders through the data collected in our experimentation. Ask your little scientist to tell you more! Goggles not required!

Social Studies

Mrs. Susan Pietriantoni, aka “The Map Lady,” returned to the third grade classrooms. In the Fall, the children created their own maps of Massachusetts during her visit. Most recently, she helped the children create their own Maps of Lexington. The children have learned a lot about the geography of Lexington. Please have them share their maps with you. You are sure to learn something new about Lexington! This lesson has been prepared the children well for our upcoming unit on Lexington 1775.

Please continue to talk with your child every day about what they’re learning in school. Reading to and with your child every day is very important, as well. Finally, please don’t underestimate the value of playing games together. Everyone benefits, and it is fun!!

Grade Four News from Ms. Hoffman, Mrs. Jaffe, Ms. Michael, and Mr. Wilde

Like flowers in spring, our fourth graders continue to develop and grow. We look forward to meeting with you during our upcoming spring conferences to discuss your child’s growth and progress thus far in the school year.

April not only brings spring showers, but MCAS as well. Our fourth graders will soon be taking their English Language Arts MCAS 2.0 computer-based testing. Throughout the school year we focus on how reading is thinking, and our goal is to help our students think deeply about text. During Reader’s Workshop, students have developed reading strategies such as visualizing, making connections, making inferences, and predicting. To help prepare our students for testing, the students analyzed exemplars, and practiced various test-taking skills to enhance their performance. Our final round of MCAS will focus on mathematics and is scheduled for early May.

We recently completed our unit on decimals and their uses. This can be a challenging concept for students, so we began by using Base Ten blocks and other manipulatives to help reinforce this concept. In addition to Base Ten blocks, we connect decimals to money as it shows decimals in use in everyday life. During this unit, students will review and extend basic concepts and notation, and they will review how to add and subtract decimals. Another focus of this unit is the relationship among metric units of length. Students will investigate linear measurement, weight, and capacity, and discover personal references for both metric and US Customary units.

Our fascinating scientific specimens for our study of Animal Adaptations finally arrived, and the students have enjoyed observing the crayfish. In addition, the students have been learning about the engineering design concepts of form and function and will soon be designing shelters for our crayfish "clients". The form of their shelter designs must serve the purpose, use, or function, and the students will work as collaborative engineering teams to compromise on the group design, construct their shelters, and conduct experiments on the effectiveness of their designs. As the saying goes, "If you build it, they will come!" The data will be compiled and it will be interesting to see which shelter design satisfies our crustaceous crayfish "clients".

Grade Five News from Mrs. Belletti, Mrs. Gavrin, Mrs. McMahon and Ms. Springfield

We have been very busy in 5th Grade. We are finishing up a new unit in science called Matter Transformations. Students investigated a question daily and then related it back to a mystery of ships stranded in a field. They loved the hands-on exploration. We also had a special guest presentation from the Museum of Science where students reviewed what they learned about electricity and magnetism. We have also been researching topics and practicing our informational reading skills. We will begin our informational writing soon. In math we have continued our exploration of fractions, adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing. The students worked hard to show their understanding of visual models. We’re also exploring algebraic patterns, the order of operations, and negative numbers. Finally, one of the middle school principals visited recently to get us ready for the transition next year. We’ll visit the middle schools in early May!

Specialist News

Counseling News from Mrs. Pirone

During these confusing and scary times, helping our child by listening is still the most powerful way to help. Along with the link to this article is a helpful chart detailing worries and stress by age.

Helping Children Feel Safe in Stressful

Stress is a common part of every child’s life. Children worry about their appearance, about tests and school projects, being accepted by friends, being separated from family, as well as many other concerns. Most children are able to keep stress in control as they have positive and successful life experiences. A certain amount of stress is normal, but too much stress can be unhealthy. Disturbing events in the news or in the home can increase a child’s stress and make them feel unsafe. When a child is ill or in the hospital, it can be an especially stressful time for the child and family.

Parents and other caregivers often ask what they can do to reassure children and help them to feel safe. Here are some tips for supporting children during stressful times:

Family Matters

  • Encourage family members to pay special attention to one another. Children of all ages need extra hugs in stressful times.

  • Pay attention to the child’s environment. Be aware of what children are hearing and seeing. Even very young children can be upset by news images of disasters and destruction. It may be wise to limit TV viewing and talk with children about what they are seeing.

  • Help children and teens release tension. Encourage physical exercise, play and other diversions that help them relax and “unwind.” Help older children and teens direct their energies into positive and helpful activities like volunteering.
  • Continue with your family’s daily routines and schedules as much as possible. Structure and familiar rituals help children feel safe.

  • Pay special attention to see that children’s needs for nutrition, sleep and exercise are met.

  • Help children in the hospital by bringing familiar and comforting belongings from home. Discuss your normal routines with health care team members so they can better support your family-centered care needs.

How to Talk with Children

  • Be honest, calm and factual. Answer children’s questions, but don’t overwhelm them with too much information. (See What Children Think at Certain Ages on page 2.)

  • Offer hope. Let children know they are not alone.

  • Assure children you are there for them and “we’ll get through this together.”

  • Help children and teens to express their worries and fears. Younger children may share their feelings in play and drawings; older children may want to write about their feelings. Toddlers and preschoolers may feel guilty when bad things happen; reassure them that they did not cause what happened.

Signs of Stress

It’s normal for children to have a wide range of feelings and some behavior changes during and following stressful events. Talk with your child about what behaviors you are seeing and share your concern. For example, “You seem to be having trouble getting to sleep at night.” Listen to their response. Offer reassurance and helpful thoughts. For example, “You are safe in your room and won’t be left alone. Would you feel better if you had a night light or some relaxing music?”

Children who experience continual stress may show ongoing signs of emotional and physical problems if their stress level gets too high. If you see behavior changes that last longer than a few weeks, prevent children from taking part in usual activities or continue to get worse, please talk with a member of your child’s health care team.

Art News from Mrs. O'Leary and Ms. Walker

In between snow day, were looked at the work of Jean-Michel Basquiat, the artist featured in “The Radiant Child” by author Javaka Steptoe, who will visit Fiske 4/23. All students created a “graffiti-like self portrait, which will be displayed for his Mr. Steptoe’s visit.

Here are just some highlights of the projects we have been working on during art now and through April vacation:

Grade K – We formed, coiled and painted our clay pots. We will create our versions of “peeps” in an environment. We will soon be starting “My Art Book”. The activities in this book are a review of all things we’ve learned this year.

Grade 1 – We will sculpted owls from clay using slab, texture slip and score. We are creating some art inspired by Asia. Soon we will create spring flowers. Then on to a group project - Funny things are everywhere emphasizing line, texture, details, cooperation and imagination.

Grade 2 – We will be looking at the work of Georgia O’Keeffe and creating a “bugs eye” view of a close up flower. We will create the ultimate dream house, inspired by the Taj Mahal.

Grade 3 – We just completed some prints. We will then move on to a 3D self-portrait, of what we want to be when we grow up.

Grade 4 – We will soon design a planet/zodiac symbol project, inspired by the artist Paul Klee. We just completed our Mexican clay food. We will then work on another Mexican inspired piece, using cut paper.

Grade 5 – Students have looked at the work of African American Artist, Romare Bearden and Faith Ringgold. Both are masters of collage and the use of pattern. Students are designing a story quilt square done in collage. They must have themselves in the square’s foreground. We will also be working on how to draw three dimensionally using shadow. Soon we will look at the work of Artists and interpret their work through our own.

Ask your child what they do in art each week because many times our projects are carried over to the next week or two.

This year’s Art Show will be held @ Central Office. The opening reception is May 2nd 6:30-8:00 pm. Artwork will be on display until May 18th. Even if your child does not have a piece in the show, it is a great opportunity to see all the artwork created system-wide, K-12. Invitations will go home the week before vacation.

Fiske Art Show List 2018

Erika Baca

Esme Baldo

Aanika Barmecha

Cormac Callahan

Victor Cassano

Preanshi Chamalla

Woobin Cho

Van Clarkson

Stella Criniti

Alma Dagan

Phoebe Dearling

Calvin Ellsworth

Talia Ellsworth

Alice Fang

Eva Fernandez

Drew Gannon

Daisy Haberman

Samantha Hattori

Yair Henig

Laila Hood

Glenn Huang

Edward Hwang

Kyran Jo

Zele Kasongo

Lera Khovina

Gusty Koch-Cochrane

Emi Koyama

Nanae Koyama

Serena Lipman

Julie Liu

Amber Low

Francesca Lucas

Christopher Lupone

Juliana Lynch

Ana Machaidze

Misha Manukyan

Eaness Mjaied

Henry Moering

Emma Niu

Tarini Nallavolu

Joe Poulos

Zoie Poulos

Ava Racanelli

Maxwell Ramanathan

Carson Ray

Sean Ray

Lillie Rosa

Isabella Schulte

Kaiden Semapakdi-Chang

Meilina Semapakdi-Chang

Haaniya Shaikh

Lydia Shen

Ramaiza Sohail

David Stern

Armaan Thakore

Mia Tsanany

Liea Vachtel

Nadav Vachtel

Noe Voskuil

Eugene Wang

Annabelle Warren

Daphne Warren

Tessa Wise

Mina Wolosoff

Cindy Wu

Brendan Xu

Katie Yang

Benjamin Yin

Christopher Yoo

Attention knitters and anyone with leftover yarn: We could use your unwanted yarn for weaving projects. We are also in need of recycled materials: clear egg cartons, yogurt containers, plastic take out containers, magazines, old calendars, gift wrap, paper, and ribbon.

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ELL News from Mrs. Hine and Mrs. Murphy

Students in the ELL program are engaged and occupied with various curricular units this Spring.

In kindergarten we have been reading books and acquiring academic vocabulary to supplement the chick life cycle unit in the classrooms. In first grade, we are studying academic vocabulary about American Symbols, and the students made flags of their native countries which are hanging in our classroom. We are embarking on a new unit on fairy tales, and we will be reading several fairy tales and using reader’s theatre to enhance reading fluency. Ms. Hine’s second graders are busy writing shared opinion letters about the characters and their traits from “Frog and Toad Together”. Third grade students are working on Notice/Wonder routines and Numberless Word Problems which encourage students to visualize and think about relationships between different elements of problems. Fourth graders continue to work on their geography unit to support their regions of the U.S. study from their classroom social studies curriculum. Ms. Hine’s fifth graders are involved in their digital memoir projects which will supplant their memoir study in the classroom.

PE News from Mr. Spiller and Ms. Murphy

Students in grades 3-5 have been working hard at giving their personal best during Fitnessgram. Fur fitness assessments are performed during this unit. I applaud the effort of all our students and hopefully they have a better sense of their overall fitness levels. Grades K-2 have also been working hard perfecting their manipulative and locomotor skills through exercise and game play.

Music News from Mr. Hart and Mrs. London

News from the Music Room

Performance dates are set for the 2017/2018 school year:

Fourth Grade “Informance: Thursdsay, April 26, at 11:30 in the Fiske Gym.

Fifth Grade Chorus/Band/Strings:
Wednesday, May 30, at 9 am and 7 pm in the Fiske Gym

Third Grade Recorder "Informance": Thursday, May 24, at 11:30 am in the Fiske Gym

Here are some of the things you might see and hear if you looked into the music room this month:

Kindergarden: Sharing our Family Folk Songs, Dancing to Bow Wow Wow, and moving to Go All Around the Village.

First Grade: Skipping and galloping to the Handel’s Country Dance, moving like bunnies, and grouping ourselves by shamrocks or four-leaf clovers.

Second Grade: Telling knock-knock jokes, singing Who’s That….?, and making Irish Stew.

Fourth Grade: Practicing our concert songs and great dance!

Fifth Grade: Getting ready for our next chorus concert, creating movement sentences, and moving to the form of Bach’s Badinerie.

Thanks from Mr. Hart and Ms. London.

Library News from Mrs. Kishpaugh

Kindergarten is celebrating the chicks and eggs science curriculum by reading books about chickens, including variations on the folktale Little Red Hen: Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza; and Little Red Hen and the Passover Matzah.

First Grade is reading recent humorous titles that explore Mother Goose, such as After the Fall and Mother Bruce.

Second Grade has been studying the genre of biography, including Snowflake Bentley and Wilma Unlimited. We are focusing on the qualities of persistence and perseverance.

Third Grade learned about the Dewey Decimal System! Two helpful videos are available on the Fiske Destiny home page: All About Dewey,; and the Shelver game, .

Fourth Grade is embarking on a study of tall tales, a uniquely American form of folk tale, to coincide with the fourth grade social studies unit, Regions of the United States. We have read many tall tales re-told and illustrated by Steven Kellogg, including Johnny Appleseed, Mike Fink, and Sally Ann Thunder Ann Whirlwind Crockett.

Fifth Grade wrapped up their Windows and Mirrors unit with a “book tasting” of titles featuring diverse characters. Students looked at a variety of picture books and wrote about whether it was a “mirror” book (they saw themselves reflected) or a “window” book (it gave them a glimpse into another’s world). Please visit my Windows and Mirrors web site to learn more about this topic and see a sampling of diverse books in the Fiske Library!

All Library classes shared Radiant Child, the award winning book by Javaka Steptoe. Fiske is so fortunate to have a visit with Mr. Steptoe scheduled for April 23! We are all VERY excited!!!

Math News from Mrs. Rawding

Here are a couple resources for you and your children to puzzle with:

Looking for Math-y Play Items that encourage curiosity, making-sense, collaboration, questions, and more?? Check out the Tiling Turtles or Gallons of Pentagons at

Books are to reading - as play is to math.... enjoy puzzling, thinking, wondering, and playing with your child!

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Literacy News from Mrs. Azeredo, Ms. Jones and Mrs. Kelley

On March 15th, the Fiske Literacy Specialists hosted a parent coffee focusing on writing development, K-5. Our talk gave an overview of the writing process, genres and our philosophy that guides writing instruction. If you were unable to join us and are still interested in learning about how to encourage your child to love writing, here are some ideas we shared with parents:

Talk with your child.

Make writing an everyday part of your life.

Focus on the content of your child’s writing first. Nobody won a Nobel prize for perfect handwriting and spelling!

Become excited about your child’s writing ideas!

You will see your children become more invested when…

They write in a special journal, with special stationary and with fun pens

They have a designated “Special Story Writing Spot”

You are able to sit and write your own stories with them

They have a forum to share their stories on a weekly basis with the family

You refer to them as “authors”.

Each year the month of April is set aside as National Poetry Month, a time to celebrate poets and their craft. Various events are held throughout the month by the Academy of American Poets and other poetry organizations. Children love to read and write poetry, a genre of reading and writing that they are exposed to in all grades.

Ideas on how to keep our young poets engaged at home can be found at: .

For a list of some of the best poetry books for children visit:

Health Office News from Mrs. O'Connell

SPRING is here!

After a long cold winter, we have to deal with allergy season. Trees and flowers are blooming and pollen is wafting through the air. Sneezing, stuffy noses or itching, burning eyes make it difficult to concentrate on learning and there is little a nurse can do to alleviate the symptoms other than cool compresses to eyes and reassurance.

If your child has symptoms of allergic reaction that you treat with any medication, either prescription or over the counter medicine, it might be helpful if the medication is available during school hours. This will require both a doctor’s order and a signed parental permission. This is true for eye drops, nasal sprays and any other allergy medicines.

Head lice seems to “creep up on us” throughout the year. It’s good practice to “take a peek once a week”. This information is being shared with you so that you can become more knowledgeable about head lice.

Head lice (pediculosis) is a common problem unrelated to personal hygiene. Your cooperation in periodically examining your child’s hair as a precaution is essential.

Please keep your child home if your child has had any of the following:

*Fever of 100F (37.8C) in the past 24 hours

*A fever accompanied by any one of the following: cough, runny nose or sore throat

*Your child has needed Tylenol or Ibuprofen to control fever for the past 24 hours

*Strep throat , if awaiting culture results of less than 24 hours of antibiotic treatment

*Vomiting or diarrhea in the past 24 hours

*An undiagnosed rash accompanied by an elevated temperature

Tips for managing a sick child at home:

* please keep your child home until no fever (off Tylenol/Ibuprofen) for 24 hours *Use a thermometer to accurately measure body temperature, (not the back of your hand)

*Children do not usually wake with a headache, if your child wakes with a headache, a fever may be present, please check temperature

*Avoid sending your child to school after administering a dose of Tylenol or Ibuprofen

“to get through the day”. Children are poor learners when they are ill

Please contact me with any questions. Thank you. Enjoy the nice weather!

Claire O’Connell RN