The Best of Bennet
A note from our Principal:
Whether you are reading this during break or after, I hope you had a wonderful spring break! We are launching into our 4th and final quarter of the year! There is much to look forward to as we zoom toward summer. Our spring music concerts are right around the corner…
Grade 6: May 2, 2023 MHS Bailey Auditorium (7:00pm)
Grade 5: May 4, 2023 MHS Bailey Auditorium (7:00pm)
Our yearly standardized testing block kicks off officially on Tuesday, May 9, 2023. A lot of information will be communicated in the coming days, but I have included our family calendar of SBAC related events below!
Happy Spring and remember to color outside the lines!
When should I keep my child home?
- Has your unvaccinated child had close contact with a known COVID positive person? Shown symptoms consistent with COVID?
- Has your child had a fever over 100* within the last 24 hours?
- Has your child been vomiting or had diarrhea in the last 24 hours?
If you answered YES to any of the above, please keep your child home and report the absence and reason on the attenance line.
Picking up early?? Here's the scoop!
- Please call ahead 5-10 minutes so we may locate your cub.
- Please come BEFORE 2:15 (before 12:45 on Wednesdays).
- Ring the Franklin doorbell (that is the main entrance that faces Main Street) and have your ID ready.
- If the time is prior to 2:15 (12:45) you may pull right up to the front door...after those hours please find parking in a designated spot or on the road as the front drive will have minibuses and special programs pickup.
Does your child participate in after school clubs on Monday or Tuesday?
If your child already qualifies for the bus, they are also offered a late bus on Mondays and Tuesdays. The bus typically leaves Bennet after parent pickup, about 4:30. This bus does NOT stop at regular bus stops. Please click the bus to the right to see the attached list and talk to your child about how to walk home from the late bus stop (which may be up to a mile from home).
If you prefer to pick your child up from activities, we ask that you park on Wells Street and pick up at 4:15 at the Franklin front door.
Do you need summer daycare?
Just a reminder, there is no summer school program this year for middle schoolers. If you are in need of daycare, online enrollment for MELC's summer program started April 3. This is for children currently in grade K-6 and runs from July 3 through Aug. 11. For details click here.
Hi Bennet Music Families!
We have enjoyed the concerts that have happened in April and look forward to the following concerts in May, which are all held at Manchester High School:
May 2 - 6th grade Spring Concert with String Ensemble/Jazz Band/Bennet Singers 7 pm
May 4 - 5th grade Spring Concert with 5th grade Bennet Singers
Sending your child to school with a water bottle (marked with their name) saves many trips to the water fountain. Please water only - no flavored drinks as they bring bugs.
A little fun from Ms. Christensen and Ms. Tomko's 5th graders!
In honor of National Pet Day, April 11, students on Team Christensen/Tomko shared some favorite memories of their pets! Please read on…
I have 7 pets, currently. My Bengal cat, No No, got out and we heard weird noises coming from the other side of the fence and thought our cat was over there because we saw a black and grey blob. My dad went over to get it and it actually wasn’t a cat. It was a raccoon. Oops! –Trinity
Once my sister and I were on a walk and we were fantasizing that my dog Ollie would get his head stuck in the fence because we were picturing how they would be sniffing and peeing on it. The next night someone threw a hotdog on the ground in front of the fence and sure enough, Ollie stuck his head through the fence to get the hotdog and got his head stuck. –Ava
Oliver was the chunkiest cat ever! We called him the Stay Puffed Marshmallow Cat. –Tyson
My dog, Willow came up to me one day and plopped her back onto the floor and now she does that regularly. –Sunshine
I had 7 fish on my birthday and we named one Ricco. Ricco and another one, Stevie, did not like each other. One day I came home from school and found Ricco sitting on Stevie, not allowing him to breathe. The next day, Stevie died. –Annalise
Ever since my little sister was born, we had a dog and they grew up together. They were always fighting and then my little sister punched my dog. –Melanie
We all remember the snow day? I took my dog out to the bathroom and as he was enjoying the snow, my mom took a picture and my dog’s face looked like it was exploding. He didn’t even look like a dog. –Alyssa
I bought a fish from PetCo who I thought was sleeping. I named him Sir Sleeps Alot. I walked in my room one day and thought he was sleeping, but then discovered that he was dead. I tossed him in the toilet and when I was about to flush him, he woke up. –Cruz
My dog Macy was walking through Saulters Pond and when we got to a bridge that covered five feet of water, she tripped and fell off the bridge. She couldn’t swim and only weighed ten pounds so my dad had to scoop her up and her legs were so skinny that she looked like a water drenched cat with a dumb expression on her face. –Faith
I have two birds, Lotta and Ocean. My Ocean bird is really active and flys a lot. My brother opened the cage to let the birds fly and Ocean was flying around the house. He flew in my mom’s room and mom went crazy. I had to rescue Ocean because he was on top of the window! –Jarell
One day my dog, Indie, escaped out the back door. We all went searching for her and we were all calling out her name. My mom took the van and found Indie and shouted, “Get over here!” Indie rolled over and showed her belly and my mom picked her up and put her in the car. -Dylan
Carmelo remembers how he met his dog, Frankie. “When I was just a newborn, he was not so sure about me. We have grown up with each other. He has bonded with me and is truly a “man’s best friend (mine).”
Junior remembers how he got his pet parrots, Snow and Nova. “We drove all the way to Massachusetts to get them. We entered and saw these little newborn parrots squawking and knew they were meant to be ours. We returned 2 weeks later to bring them home. They cried a lot of first but now love us and repeat everything we say (so we have to be careful.)”
Harper loves her two pointer dogs, Gunner and Bear. “My parents snuck away and lied, saying they had to help their friend. When they returned, they asked us out to the car and we found a puppy, Gunner. Even though I was scared, it was like ‘love at first sight.’ I immediately cuddled with him.
On the other hand, I knew Bear was coming. My dad returned at 2 in the afternoon with our new dog. He was so tiny when we met! Gunner and Bear are still trying to get along to this day!”
Kenzie says “My mom and I decided to get bunnies. We traveled a few hours away to pick them up. The owner told us about the bunnies and I chose the one she described as the “troublemaker” because it was always escaping. My mom chose the calm one because he seemed nice. Their names are Mocha and Latte.”
Chris shares, “I had my cat, Luna, for 5 years. She was pregnant two times and we gave the kittens to our family members. We kept one and named her Ginger. Ginger is playful but Luna is lazy and likes to be cuddled. I have to make sure I pet her because if I don’t, she will scratch on my curtains in frustration.”
Zech says, “My dog, Snow, jumps on me and barks when I come over my Grandma’s house. She is always so excited to see me and loves to play. It seems like she only sleeps when I am not there because she wants to play fetch.”
Jordyn says “Shadow, my kitten, likes to play a lot. His name goes good with him because he sees his shadow a lot and jumps because he’s scared. He loves to cuddle with me but tries to scratch you if he thinks you are playing.”
Has someone made you smile? Helped you out? Gone above & beyond?
Shout them out here!! Everyone needs a lift once in a while and now it's your turn to lift someone else up...tell us how someone made your day a little brighter. You can shout out a student, staff member or even a parent!
*Mrs. Redman shouts out Borhan Alwadi, Iqbal Ansar and Arshad Mohammed who consistently give their full attention in class, are always eager to share their answers and knowledge, and work their hardest on assignments!
*The library staff would like to do a shout out to students who participated in reciting poems for our book trailer for National Poetry Month:
Grade 6: Isabella Crandall, Kahlil Jordan, Kyran Aikens, Milan Hassan
Grade 5: Imagine McDonald
*From the Nursing office:
- Shout out to Alicia Palmissano for dealing with so many medical emergencies LIKE A PRO!!
- Shout out to Security Guard Barb Avery for making each student that she is interacting with feel like they matter!
- Shout out to Security Guard John Padilla for his friendly disposition and always helping the nurses (and secretaries!!) with interpretation. We appreciate you!!
*Ms. Cavana shouts out to Elijah Boaitey - Who is showing great improvement in work in his classes. He's been kind and respectful to classmates and teachers! Great job Elijah!
MOOOOMM I’m bored. There’s NOTHING to do. Can I have more screen time?
Is this what you hear every weekend, and especially on a school break? You can buy your child a million toys, but after the initial excitement, they typically get stuffed in a closet or under the bed. Here are a few “out of the box” ideas for things to do with your child that are free or very low cost, from a mom of 5, step-mom of 2 and nana to 1!
*Menu plan (give the kids flyers from local grocery stores. When you get to the store, give the list to your child (children) and let them do the shopping. Once home, teach them how to be safe and sanitary and let them do the fun stuff. You would be amazed at how good kids are at chopping and stirring with supervision of course! Ask them to set the table and even serve the meal. You will be amazed at how much pride they will have (and they may even try their veggies if they helped make them!!).
*Bake from scratch instead of a box with your student. You will both find it is much less expensive and much tastier. If you are not “Betty Crocker” then rip open that box and make some brownies anyway!!
*Garden! This can be something as simple as a few pots of flowers by the door, some indoor plants, or a full blown vegetable garden. I have fond memories of gardening with my mom when I was young.
*Have your child work on a craft project for a senior for Mothers or Father’s Day (this can be for a grandparent or other relative OR you can bring items to any local senior housing center. A few easy and inexpensive ideas are homemade cards, painting a small clay pot and planting a little flower, or even making a picture frame (you can glue items like buttons or shells on a frame, or paint a pretty pattern).
*Find your favorite childhood movie and watch with your child…make some popcorn and grab a few treats from the dollar store.
*Paint rocks! We are big rock painters at my house. You can use these rocks in countless places. We put some in our house plants so our cats can’t “dig” in the pots! We use them as paperweights, small gifts to bring a smile, and we even paint some for our outside gardens!! You can find rocks anywhere or buy them at a craft store…I prefer to find them in nature!
*Take a hike! Have you ever hiked Case Mountain right in Manchester? There are both super easy (think paved) routes as well as more difficult, (think hands and feet on the rock at the same time) trails. We like to take a break at the top for a quick treat, some water, and of course the requisite pictures at the summit with the mall in the background! After a good hike we head for a hearty meal or an ice-cream treat! If Case Mountain isn’t your cup of tea (or you have btdt), there are hundreds of other hiking spots nearby, or just take a walk around your own neighborhood and end at a park for a fun break.
*Hit the beach! Even if the weather is not fit for swimming you can have fun at the beach. I enjoy taking a hoodie, a blanket and a book and listening to the waves as I read. My youngest likes to walk along the rocks and try to catch crabs (remember to bring string and maybe a leftover hotdog to entice them). Building sand castles is fun at any age. Just being near the ocean always heals my soul.
Here are a few local events for middle schoolers or families for this month in particular:
Monday, Apr. 17
9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. -- Kid’s Pet Portrait Painting Workshop at YSB, 63 Linden St.
5:30 - 7:30 p.m. -- Boys II Men enrichment program at YSB, 63 Linden St.
6 - 8 p.m. -- Holocaust Remembrance Day service and presentation at Beth Sholom B’nai Israel, 400 MiddleTpke. East.
6:30 p.m. -- Author Nan Rossiter at Whiton Library.
Tuesday, April 18
3:30 - 4:15 p.m. -- Origami Storigami with Motoko children's program at Whiton Library.
3:30 - 4:30 p.m. -- Teen Trivia at Mary Cheney Library.
6 p.m. -- Manchester Youth Commision meeting at Lincoln Center.
6:30 - 7:15 p.m. -- Sport Stacking for grades K - 5 at Mary Cheney Library
Wednesday, April 19
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. -- A Day in Nature at Hammonasset State Park for kids grades 4 -12.
3 - 3:45 p.m. -- Chat with a Meteorologist children’s program at Whiton Library.
6 - 7:30 p.m. -- Dungeons & Dragons at Mary Cheney Library.
10:30 a.m. -- Kings of the Court 3 x3 basketball tournament at Mahoney Rec, 110 Cedar St.
3:30 - 4:45 p.m. -- R.E.A.D to a Dog at Mary Cheney Library.
Thursday, April 20
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. -- The Ultimate Art Experience! A field trip to New Britain Museum of American Art for kids age 10 and up.
Friday, April 21
Saturday, April 22
9 a.m. - noon -- Cheney Rail Trail and Center Springs community cleanup event.
1 p.m -- History Walk #8 of 23 in 2023: Hockanum River, starting at 65 North Main.
1 p.m. -- Upcycled Cinderella - an imaginative children’s show at Cheney Hall.
2:30 p.m. -- Vegetable Garden Rock Craft for adults at Mary Cheney Library
Sunday, April 23
1 - 4 p.m. -- Graffiti Battle with ‘RiseUp For Arts’ artists at Urban Lodge, 47 Purnell Place.
Tuesday, April 25
3:30 - 4:30 p.m. -- Library Iron Chef at Mary Cheney Library.
Wednesday, April 26
3:30 - 4:45 p.m. -- R.E.A.D. to a Dog at Mary Cheney Library.
6 - 7:30 p.m. -- Teen Tabletop Gaming at Mary Cheney Library.
6 p.m. -- Japanese and Korean gourmet dinner at Manchester Community College.
7:30 - 8:30 p.m. -- Boy Scout Troop 25’s meeting for new scouts at Center Congregational Church, 11 Center St. Click here to learn more.
Thursday, April 27, 28, 29 -- The Illing Drama Club will present ‘Honk!’ at Manchester High
Saturday, April 29-- Rebuilding Together in Manchester will be held on April 29. THIS IS A GREAT FAMILY COMMUNITY DAY!!
Whatever you do with your kiddos this break or summer, just remember we only have about 18 summers until our children become young adults. By middle school that number is down to about 6-7 summers left!. However hard and crazy busy this time of your life is, I promise you will most likely look back on these years as some of the best…happy memory making!
Do you need to drop off new medications for your student? Please be sure you have the Authorization for Administration of Medicine by School Personnel signed by your doctor first. Nurses cannot administer medication without written doctor's orders.
Bennet School Nurses,
Penny Parent & Carrie Bowman
ATTENTION GRADE 6 PARENTS!!
Your student will be required to have a physical dated January 2022 or later, and proof of tdap and meningococcal vaccines in order to be cleared medically for 7th grade. If they have not already had a physical during that time frame that you have submitted to the nurse, please schedule one. It is not too early!! You can request your doctor fax the paperwork to us at 860-647-6348.
Please do not wait until summer to get this done as that is often too late to get in for an appointment prior to the start of school. You do not want your child missing their first days at a new school, or having to run around for last minute vaccines at the end of summer. Questions can be directed to Christie Michaud at 860-647-0559 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Christie Michaud, BSN RN
Manchester Public Schools
District Compliance Nurse
Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wishes You Knew By Ellen Notbohm
How well the family functions as a whole is just as important as how well the child with special needs is doing.
Some days it seems the only predictable thing about it is the unpredictability. The only consistent attribute - the inconsistency. There is little argument on any level but that autism is baffling, even to those who spend their lives around it. The child who lives with autism may look "normal" but his behavior can be perplexing and downright difficult. Autism was once thought an "incurable" disorder, but that notion is crumbling in the face knowledge and understanding that is increasing even as you read this. Every day, individuals with autism are showing us that they can overcome, compensate for and otherwise manage many of autism's most challenging characteristics. Equipping those around our children with simple understanding of autism's most basic elements has a tremendous impact on their ability to journey towards productive, independent adulthood. Autism is an extremely complex disorder but for purposes of this one article, we can distill its myriad characteristics into four fundamental areas: sensory processing challenges, speech/language delays and impairments, the elusive social interaction skills and whole child/self-esteem issues. And though these four elements may be common to many children, keep front of-mind the fact that autism is a spectrum disorder: no two (or ten or twenty) children with autism will be completely alike. Every child will be at a different point on the spectrum. And, just as importantly - every parent, teacher and caregiver will be at a different point on the spectrum. Child or adult, each will have a unique set of needs.
Here are ten things every child with autism wishes you knew:
- I am first and foremost a child. I have autism. I am not primarily "autistic." My autism. is only one aspect of my total character. It does not define me as a person. Are you a person with thoughts, feelings and many talents, or are you just fat (overweight), myopic (wear glasses) or klutzy (uncoordinated, not good at sports)? Those may be things that I see first when I meet you, but they are not necessarily what you are all about. As an adult, you have some control over how you define yourself. If you want to single out a single characteristic, you can make that known. As a child, I am still unfolding. Neither you nor I yet know what I may be capable of. Defining me by one characteristic runs the danger of setting up an expectation that may be too low. And if I get a sense that you don't think I "can do it," my natural response will be: Why try?
- My sensory perceptions are disordered. Sensory integration may be the most difficult aspect of autism to understand, but it is arguably the most critical. It means that the ordinary sights, sounds, smells, tastes and touches of everyday that you may not even notice can be downright painful for me. The very environment in which I have to live often seems hostile. I may appear withdrawn or belligerent to you but I am really just trying to defend myself. Here is why a "simple" trip to the grocery store may be hell for me: My hearing may be hyper-acute. Dozens of people are talking at once. The loudspeaker booms today's special. Music whines from the sound system. Cash registers beep and cough, a coffee grinder is chugging. The meat cutter screeches, babies wail, carts creak, the fluorescent lighting hums. My brain can't filter all the input and I'm in overload! My sense of smell may be highly sensitive. The fish at the meat counter isn't quite fresh, the guy standing next to us hasn't showered today, the deli is handing out sausage samples, the baby in line ahead of us has a poopy diaper, they're mopping up pickles on aisle 3 with ammonia....I can't sort it all out. I am dangerously nauseated. Because I am visually oriented (see more on this below), this may be my first sense to become over-stimulated. The fluorescent light is not only too bright, it buzzes and hums. The room seems to pulsate and it hurts my eyes. The pulsating light bounces off everything and distorts what I am seeing -- the space seems to be constantly changing. There's glare from windows, too many items for me to be able to focus (I may compensate with "tunnel vision"), moving fans on the ceiling, so many bodies in constant motion. All this affects my vestibular and proprioceptive senses, and now I can't even tell where my body is in space.
- Please remember to distinguish between won't (I choose not to) and can't (I am not able to). Receptive and expressive language and vocabulary can be major challenges for me. It isn't that I don't listen to instructions. It's that I can't understand you. When you call to me from across the room, this is what I hear: "*&^%$#@, Billy. #$%^*&^%$&*........." Instead, come speak directly to me in plain words: "Please put your book in your desk, Billy. It's time to go to lunch." This tells me what you want me to do and what is going to happen next. Now it is much easier for me to comply.
- I am a concrete thinker. This means I interpret language very literally. It's very confusing for me when you say, "Hold your horses, cowboy!" when what you really mean is "Please stop running." Don't tell me something is a "piece of cake" when there is no dessert in sight and what you really mean is "this will be easy for you to do." When you say "Jamie really burned up the track," I see a kid playing with matches. Please just tell me "Jamie ran very fast." Idioms, puns, nuances, double entendres, inference, metaphors, allusions and sarcasm are lost on me.
- Please be patient with my limited vocabulary. It's hard for me to tell you what I need when I don't know the words to describe my feelings. I may be hungry, frustrated, frightened or confused but right now those words are beyond my ability to express. Be alert for body language, withdrawal, agitation or other signs that something is wrong. Or, there's a flip side to this: I may sound like a "little professor" or movie star, rattling off words or whole scripts well beyond my developmental age. These are messages I have memorized from the world around me to compensate for my language deficits because I know I am expected to respond when spoken to. They may come from books, TV, the speech of other people. It is called "echolalia." I don't necessarily understand the context or the terminology I'm using. I just know that it gets me off the hook for coming up with a reply.
- Because language is so difficult for me, I am very visually oriented. Please show me how to do something rather than just tell me. And please be prepared to show me many times. Lots of consistent repetition helps me learn. A visual schedule is extremely helpful as I move through my day. Like your day-timer, it relieves me of the stress of having to remember what comes next, makes for smooth transition between activities, and helps me manage my time and meet your expectations. I won't lose the need for a visual schedule as I get older, but my "level of representation" may change. Before I can read, I need a visual schedule with photographs or simple drawings. As I get older, a combination of words and pictures may work, and later still, just words.
- Please focus and build on what I can do rather than what I can't do. Like any other human, I can't learn in an environment where I'm constantly made to feel that I'm not good enough and that I need "fixing." Trying anything new when I am almost sure to be met with criticism, however "constructive," becomes something to be avoided. Look for my strengths and you will find them. There is more than one "right" way to do most things.
- Please help me with social interactions. It may look like I don't want to play with the other kids on the playground, but sometimes it's just that I simply do not know how to start a conversation or enter a play situation. If you can encourage other children to invite me to join them at kickball or shooting baskets, it may be that I'm delighted to be included. I do best in structured play activities that have a clear beginning and end. I don't know how to "read" facial expressions, body language or the emotions of others, so I appreciate ongoing coaching in proper social responses. For example, if I laugh when Emily falls off the slide, it's not that I think it's funny. It's that I don't know the proper response. Teach me to say "Are you OK?"
- Try to identify what triggers my meltdowns. Meltdowns, blow-ups, tantrums, or whatever you want to call them, are even more horrid for me than they are for you. They occur because one or more of my senses has gone into overload. If you can figure out why my meltdowns occur, they can be prevented. Keep a log, noting times, settings, people, activities. A pattern may emerge. Try to remember that all behavior is a form of communication. It tells you, when my words cannot, how I perceive something that is happening in my environment. Parents, keep in mind as well: persistent behavior may have an underlying medical cause. Food allergies and sensitivities, sleep disorders, and gastrointestinal problems can all have profound effects on behavior.
- Love me unconditionally. Banish thoughts like, "If he would just......" and "Why can't she....." You did not fulfill every last expectation your parents had for you and you wouldn't like being constantly reminded of it. I did not choose to have autism. But remember that it is happening to me, not you. Without your support, my chances of successful, self-reliant adulthood are slim. With your support and guidance, the possibilities are broader than you might think. I promise you - I am worth it.
- And finally, three words: Patience. Patience. Patience. Work to view my autism as a different ability rather than a disability. Look past what you may see as limitations and see the gifts autism has given me. It may be true that I'm not good at eye contact or conversation, but have you noticed that I don't lie, cheat at games, tattle on my classmates or pass judgment on other people? Also true that I probably won't be the next Michael Jordan. But with my attention to fine detail and capacity for extraordinary focus, I might be the next Einstein. Or Mozart. Or Van Gogh. They had autism too. The answer to Alzheimer's, the enigma of extraterrestrial life -- what future achievements from today's children with autism, children like me, lie ahead? All that I might become won't happen without you as my foundation. Be my advocate, be my friend, and we'll see just how far I can go.
©2005 Ellen Notbohm
©2010 Autism Speaks Inc. Autism Speaks and Autism Speaks It's Time To Listen & Design are trademarks owned by Autism Speaks Inc. All rights reserved.
Please remember to call the attendence line before 8am @860-647-3583 if your child will be absent. Please leave your child's name, ID #, and a detailed reason for the absence (ie., fever, cough, etc.) If your child's absence is COVID related please also call the nurse @ 860-647-3582. Absences are considered unexcused if you do not report the reason.
Presenting Bennet’s Black Joy Poetry Contest Winner: Annalise Gentles
What I am is my identity, my feelings
They are a part of me, they help me
See, they help me grow, they help me know,
What to know. My future flies high like
A bird in the big blue sky.
My poetry is a part of me.
It helps what I should see, is what I should believe,
That’s not true. The truth should fly in you like
The birds in that big blue sky.
Do you struggle to get your child to listen to you?
Click below for a free virtual event. Learn to get kids and teens to listen without nagging, power struggles, and yelling at this FREE virtual event with 13 experts on April 25-26, 2023! Watch from anywhere in the world: Parenting Seminar
Do you want to be more involved in your child's school? Join the PTSA!!
- Connect with Bennet staff, students and families.
- Build a sense of community!
- Spread JOY!
Please email email@example.com to learn more or to join!
We are here to help and support all students. We continue to work with all students individually, in small groups and in classrooms to foster positive peer connections & develop strong academic skills. Please feel free to contact your child’s counselor at any time with any questions or concerns.
Grade 5: Ms. Liz Lewtan firstname.lastname@example.org or
Mrs. Jessica Walsh email@example.com
Grade 5 / 6: Mr. Andy Ahlberg firstname.lastname@example.org
Grade 6: Ms. Felicina Petito email@example.com or
Mrs. Yolanda Feliciano-Bedard firstname.lastname@example.org
Parent Tips to Help Prepare Your Student for Standardized Testing
Parents want to see their student(s) perform well in school. Parents play an important part in helping their children give their best performance. Help prepare your child to give the test their all.
The night before:
- Help your child get to bed on time. Research shows that being well-rested helps students do better.
-Keep your routine as normal as possible. Upsetting natural routines may make children feel insecure.
-Mention the test to show you’re interested, but don’t dwell on it.
-Plan ahead to avoid conflicts on the morning of the test.
The morning of the test:
- Get up early to avoid rushing. Be sure to have your child at school on time.
-A good breakfast but not a heavy one is important. Research shows that students do better if they have breakfast before they take tests.
-Be positive about the test. Acknowledge that tests can be hard and that they’re designed so that no one will know all of the answers. Explain that doing your best is what counts. The important thing is to make your child comfortable and confident about the test.
After the test:
-Talk to your child about his or her feelings about the test, making sure you acknowledge the effort such a task requires.
-Discuss what was easy and what was hard; discuss what your child learned from the test.
-Discuss what changes your child would make if he or she were to retake the test.
-Explain that performance on a test is not a condition for you to love your child. You love your child just for the person he or she is.
Helping Children Cope with “Big Feelings”
Children can have the same big feelings that we do. The difference for adults, though, is that we have more life experience to know how to deal with difficult emotions. When our children feel fear, anxiety, or anger, they need our help to learn how to cope.
Here are some tips:
Name the feeling(s)
Help your child figure out which feeling they are having/were having. Putting a name to it can help validate their experience. Having a feelings poster or reading children’s books about feelings can be helpful to identify their own feeling.
Normalize the feeling(s)
It can be confusing for a child who’s feelings take over and lead to behaviors they may not usually have. Explain that all people have these feelings sometimes, and we all have to learn how to manage them.
Talk about the brain
Our brains and our bodies are connected, and our brains send out signals when we experience certain “big feelings.” Explain that we have a part of our brain (thinking brain) that’s in charge of making decisions, thinking things through, and managing our emotions. Explain that another part of our brain (emotional brain) is in charge of important things like breathing, digesting food, and holds onto big feelings like anger or anxiety; this part of our brain also reacts to any threats, and can make us feel like we need to run (flight), fight back, or freeze. Sometimes this part of our brain overreacts, and we need to try strategies to calm it down.
Practice self-regulation skills
When children are calm, their thinking brain is on, and this is the best time to come up with a plan for when their emotional brain tries to take over. Encourage taking a break (not a timeout), deep breathing, releasing angry energy by exercising, and relaxation strategies such as progressive muscle relaxation, coloring, calm down jars, music, etc. Practice these repeatedly when they are calm. Helping your child begin to recognize their body’s early signs of a big feeling (heart racing, clenched jaw, etc.) can help them learn when to employ their self-regulation skills.
News from the office:
- Picking up early? Please call ahead and have your ID ready on arrival.
- Technology assistance needed? Call or text 860-682-0607.
- Moving? Please contact the Registrar, Heidi Turner, to find out what you need to provide to update your info: email@example.com or 860-647-8275
- New phone # or email? That is another reason to contact Mrs. Turner! We need to keep this info updated so you don't miss alerts, but also in case your child has an emergency!
From the Security Team:
Please be aware, as you drive through our drop off/pick up area, that students are everywhere! Students should be dropped off in designated areas. Please do not let your child exit the car on Wells Street and there is absolutely no parking or meeting students at CVS.
To enter the drop off/pick up area please enter School Street from Spruce Street and follow the traffic, exiting onto Wells Street. Staff members are stationed throughout the Bennet Campus to help. Students should be ready to exit on the building side of the vehicle for safety.
Special Programs famiies and mini buses are the only vehicles allowed to pull in front of the Franklin Building for drop-off or pick-up. No other vehicles will be allowed to access that driveway before 8:15 am or after 2:30 pm.
Late students (past 8:15) will be dropped off at the front door, ring the bell to be let in, and given a tardy pass before heading to class. Parents do not accompany late students. If the tardy is due to a doctor's appointment, please get a note from the doctor's office and the tardy will be excused.
Is there something you would like to see in the newsletter this year?
Please feel free to reach out to Mrs. Berman (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have something you think the Bennet Community would like to know about or if you have pictures or shout-outs to share. We can't promise it will make it into the newsletter, but we will make every effort to incorporate newsworthy items.