Parent Peek at the Week

Week of October 4th, 2021

In case you missed it....

Important Dates

Saturday, October 2nd

  • National Custodian Day - a big thank you to Mr. Davies and Mr. Wasson-McQuigge for all they do for us every day!!!

Monday, October 4th - Day 5

  • 6:30pm - School Council Meeting (see below)

Tuesday, October 5th - Day 1

  • International Teacher’s Day - a HUGE thank you to all our amazing teachers for all they do each and every day!

Wednesday, October 6th - Day 2

  • 9am - 10:30am: First fire drill of the year (see below)
  • Kawartha Heights Pizza Night at Domino’s Pizza

Thursday, October 7th - Day 3

Friday, October 8th - Day 4

  • Fabulous dance party Friday!

Upcoming days:

  • October 11th: Happy Thanksgiving!!!
  • October 12th: Hot lunch program begins

Social/Emotional and Self-Regulation Learning

Given all that we have been through the past many years, it's no wonder that our students are needing reminders and new teaching in the areas of social/emotional and self-regulation learning. As adults, we need this too!

To that end, we are fortunate to have some new supports and foci this year at Kawartha Heights! First of all, we've been given the ability to have Mrs. Rees (our Grade 3 teacher) as an Early Intervention Teacher 40% of her time. She is working directly with teachers from JK - Grade 3 in co-planning, co-teaching and co-assessing reading and self-regulation skills. This is a wonderful opportunity for collaboration and growth for all of us!

In addition to Mrs. Rees' position, we are excited to be starting 2 new programs this year. For our younger learners in JK - Grade 1, we are implementing the Feeling Buddies Program. For students in Grades 2 -6, the focus will be on the Mind UP program. Please see below for more information.

Feeling Buddies Program (Grades JK - 1)

We are very excited to have the opportunity to begin teaching the Feeling Buddies Self-Regulation Toolkit in our Kindergarten and Grade 1 classrooms. This program helps children learn independent self-regulatory strategies and language that will become their inner speech for self-control, emotional well-being, empathy and healing for the rest of their lives. It incorporates literacy, music and movement.

The Feeling Buddies program is research based and trauma informed. It will be a year long focus for our students and we can't wait to see as they grow and use new learning and strategies in their every day life. Your child's teacher will be sharing specific information on what they are learning in class - and I will continue to give general information in our Parent Peeks at the Week.

Mind UP Program (Grades 2 - 6)

We are also very excited to be introducing an additional evidence-based social and emotional literacy curriculum, which will help our students better engage in learning, limit their distractions, self-regulate their behavior and improve their focus and resiliency training. The program is called MindUP™ ( The Hawn Foundation, 2011) and it utilizes a brain centered approach to integrating neuroscience, positive psychology, mindful awareness training and social and emotional learning, as tools for success in the classroom and in life. This program will be a focus area in Grades 2 - 6 at our school over the course of the year.

Simply put, in a series of many lessons with follow up extensions for further understanding, MindUP™ helps a child enhance their self-awareness, concentration abilities, problem solving skills, pro-social behaviors (helping, sharing, and cooperating), while exploring positive human qualities, such as happiness, optimism, and gratitude. MindUP™ has been rigorously researched, is evidence-based and schools who have used it report improvement in their overall learning and classroom engagement. The results include lower dropout rates, a decrease in stress and classroom anxiety, improvements in peer to peer conflict resolution as well as the programs overall scaffolding of academic success.

MindUP™ was created to help children understand the ways their minds work, how their thoughts and feelings affect their behavior, and has four goals:

1) To foster mindful focused awareness

2) To increase positive human qualities, such as empathy, perspective-taking, helpfulness and kindness

3) To increase optimism and the sense of well-being, while gaining resiliency traits

4) To foster a cohesive, caring classroom climate

Each MindUP™ lesson teaches students about their brain (anatomy and function), and how they can positively influence their own development. Along with the classroom lessons, there is a short, three times a day practice of calming the mind through “brain breaks” and

focused breathing and listening exercises.

We are excited about the potential this program holds for making all of our classrooms a better engaged, focused, optimistic community of learners and know your child will only benefit from these tools and strategies.

Your child's teacher will provide more specific information each month on what this learning looks like in their specific class. Stay tuned to more Parent Peeks at the Week for additional information as well!

School Council Meeting

A huge thank you to everyone who has considered being part of our School Council this year. We need you! We love to have your voice and input – the more the merrier.

Our first meeting including elections and setting fundraising priorities will take place tomorrow night at 6:30pm on WebEx. The link to the event is:

Attached is the agenda for your reference.

Please feel free to join us!

Communication and Information Forms

Every year each KPR school asks families important questions around information and communication topics. Last year this was done electronically by the board office, but we had a hard time getting information from each family. This year we’re trying something new!

Mrs. Sampson has posted a form in each teacher’s homeroom group in Edsby. Please fill in the form for each of your children - by clicking on and answering the questions in the correct homeroom (each form is specific to each homeroom). We appreciate you taking the time to fill this in as soon as you can! If you have any questions, just let Mrs. Sampson know.

Hot Lunch Program

We are thrilled that after a year, we are able to get our hot lunch program up and running again - and we know you're excited too!!

You have until Sunday, October 10th to place an order for the first date of Tuesday, October 12th. Hot lunches will be available twice a week. On Tuesday's we'll be offering Subway and on Thursday's we'll be offering Boston Pizza.

Please go to to sign up and place your orders. No money or orders are done through the school. For more information, please see below!

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Fire Drills

This week we will participate in our first fire drills of the year.

Like last year, this will NOT be done as a whole school. Instead - we will complete them as teams (4 separate classes). On Wednesday in the first block, each "team" will be called on the announcements to initiate the fire drill routine (but there will be no actual alarm). This gives students the chance to experience a drill, while ensuring safety protocols remain in place.

The final 2 fire drills of the fall will be surprises - classes can expect them soon however, as we want to get them done while the weather is still warm enough!

Mark it on your calendars!!

Your first "don't have to cook" night of the year is almost here! We have our first Domino's Pizza night scheduled for this Wednesday, October 6th. Mark it on your calendars and get ready to eat pizza in support of our school!
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Bits and Pieces!

Photo Day - Since we had to decide last April on our Photo day for this year, we selected March once again as we were unsure what the protocols would be for the return to school. Just an FYI that our photo day is March 30th, 2022.

Fidgets - Fidgets are a necessary learning tool for some of our students, but can be a distraction for others. Due to the recent popularity of "Popits", we are finding more and more are coming to school, but being used as toys instead of learning tools. Starting this week, each class has been given a selection of fidgets for teachers to provide to students who require them. Please do not send anything other than lunch, water bottles and extra masks to school with your students each day.

Water bottles - speaking of water bottles, we need your help! Last year the board office provided water bottles for students who needed them at any time. On any given day we would give up to 10 bottles away. This year, we just don't have access to this same inventory, but we're finding the need for water bottles is still great. Please try to remember to send your child with a water bottle each day. We are unable to use water fountains with current Covid protocols so it is essential for our students to stay hydrated. Thank you!

One more thing....

We've heard so much about the "gaps" and loss of learning for our students, but the following graphic, really drove this home. Not only are we aware of learning gaps, but we're also seeing deficits in self-regulation and social/emotional needs with many students and classes right now. Take a minute to look below.....with so much time lost on important teaching, no wonder there are struggles. We continue to be patient, be kind, and be caring. Our students will get there, but they need that little extra from all of us - at home and at school - right now.
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