5th Grade Flyer

Graden Elementary 2019-2020

Last Edited May 26, 2020 at 9:30 a.m.

News from Graden's 5th Grade Teachers

This flyer serves as a weekly update regarding information from the grade level as well as from each classroom teacher. It will automatically be sent to the guardian email listed in Infinite Campus for each Graden 5th grader. We will resume this communication tool in August, 2020.
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Good Luck in Middle School to All Our 5th Grade Hornets!!

Information from Dr. Halverstadt

Hello Hornets,

This is the final SMORE communication for this academic year! We hope you have an amazing summer, and thank you again for making the best of a very difficult situation! My final day at Graden is June 30, so feel free to stop by and say goodbye.


Thank you for giving me the gift of your children, my job as principal generated pride that few others experience. I will never forget 9 and 45.

With hornet pride, admiration and appreciation,

Dr. Halverstadt, principal

Dr. LuAnn Halverstadt, Principal

Graden Elementary – Home of the Hornets

Phone: 816-359-4340


A Leader in Me Lighthouse School

Summer School: July 1-31

The Park Hill Board of Education has moved Summer School to July 1-July 31 with no school on July 3. At this time we fully intend for Summer School to be held IN PERSON but are developing a virtual summer school plan in case face-to-face is not an option due to health and safety guidelines. Transportation will be available as long as we can meet health and safety guidelines. This is wonderful news for our students and staff who have been out of school since mid-March. Enrollment information has been sent out to all families digitally and is accessible on the Park Hill Webpage.

End of 2019-2020 School Year


At Graden, the 5th grade teachers departmentalize for reading, writing, math, and science. Each teacher teaches social studies. What does this mean? Students receive instruction from their homeroom teacher for three content areas and then they receive instruction from the other partnered teacher for the remaining two subjects.

Mrs. Brown and Mrs. Vernon are partner teachers and Dr. Ivy and Mrs. Thorson are partner teachers.

Mrs. Brown teaches reading and writing for her students and Mrs. Vernon's students.

Mrs. Vernon teaches math and science for her students and Mrs. Brown's students.

Dr. Ivy teaches reading and writing for her students and Mrs. Thorson's students.

Mrs. Thorson teaches math and science for her students and Dr. Ivy's students.

Distance Learning

As we embark on our Distance Learning plan, here are a few helpful tips and resources. The classroom teachers are available from 9-11 a.m. and 1-2:30 p.m. The easiest way to connect with us is through email. Here are our email addresses for your convenience.

Mrs. Brown brownme@parkhill.k12.mo.us

Mrs. Vernon vernonb@parkhill.k12.mo.us

Dr. Ivy ivyl@parkhill.k12.mo.us

Mrs. Thorson thorsonl@parkhill.k12.mo.us

We are sending information to parents and students through email. All email addresses are from Infinite Campus. Please check to be sure you are receiving our emails. Our goal is to not inundate you with emails. Therefore, we will add what we can to this newsletter. It is available 24/7 through the Graden website. Look under Parent Resources, towards the very bottom...or better yet, bookmark it!

Our main communication will be through student email and assignments will be posted on our Google Classrooms. The children know how to access and are very familiar with Google Classroom. Most of them just learned Outlook email. We want to direct the children to the Park Hill Portal for easy access to the applications we use on a regular basis.

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Distance Learning Resource for Families

Click this link for access to additional information.

5th Grade Farewell Walk- Friday, May 22nd Zoom Style

Please join us for the 5th Grade Farewell Walk-Zoom Style! Students are welcome to join this Zoom on Friday, May 22nd for a final goodbye with the entire 5th grade. Students can wear sunglasses and hats to celebrate the last day of 5th grade. Due to the size of our group, the plan is to have all participants on mute and we’ll share a celebratory song as we wave and dance our way to the end of the year! For a year like none other, we wanted to have a final goodbye like never before.

The 5th grade teachers will meet with their classes prior to this final walk. Please pay close attention to the start times on the various invites.

Thank you for helping us celebrate the completion of elementary school!

Promotion Parade Packet Pick Up Was a HUGE Success!

Thank you to everyone who was able to attend the Promotion Parade Packet Pick Up! It was wonderful to see the students and families and to celebrate the completion of the 5th grade year. Our school community is so blessed to be supportive of one another, especially during these unprecedented times. #Gradenproud!

5th Grade Students & Families, are you ready to celebrate?

Celebration #1

Click on the link below to view the Virtual 5th Grade Promotion Ceremony. https://youtu.be/UiUGU8OSius

Celebration #2

On Thursday, May 21, come to Graden Elementary, beginning at 5 pm to pick up your promotion packet in the car line. Decorate your car, and bring your hornet spirit!

Celebration #3

Come to Graden on Friday, May 22, anytime between 9:00 am and 3:00 pm for pictures. You can take pictures in front of the Graden marquee and in front of the “Card My Yard” letters (Congrats 5th Grade).

We LOVE our Fifth Graders

Congratulations to Our Essay Presenters!

These students will share their Reflection Essay as part of the virtual 5th Grade Promotion. Congratulations to each of them!

From Mrs. Brown's Class: Addison Palmer

From Mrs. Vernon's Class: Annabel Porter

From Dr. Ivy's Class: Viviana Leluga

From Mrs. Thorson's Class: Hayden Higgins

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Google Classroom Connection

Our students will be using our Google Classrooms to complete the activities listed on the slides above. This is not a new process for them, as we use the Google Classrooms regularly. The specific classrooms include;

Distance Learning Math & Science

ELA 2019-20

*Their homeroom teacher's Social Studies Google Classroom

This process should make the completion of work efficient. Teachers are able to comment on the assignments and we are able to see each child's progress.

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Zoom Video Conferencing

We will be using Zoom to support our connection with our students. For each meeting, students will receive an email with the information to join. We've encouraged students to keep their email cleaned out, so they are not confused by having multiple emails about Zoom meetings. At this time, we are not posting the information on this newsletter because we want to have only our students joining. As parents/guardians, you are welcome to attend with your child, but we are not opening these conferences to the general public. These conferences are completely optional. Currently, the purpose is to have a quick check-in and answer general questions. If you have specific questions, please email your child's teacher.

Find the Newest updates from Specials- By checking out Dr. H's Smore Above

News From Our Counselor- Ms. Cetola

Good morning Hornet students and families!

The days feel a lot less bright without the shine that is each and every one of YOU! I miss the smiles, hugs, and vibrant energy you bring to our Graden family more than you know and I am counting down the days until we can see each other again. :) With that being said, I want to know how you all are doing! I have created a Google form for any student who would like to check in or give a quick update on how things are going. ❤ I am available from 9:00-11:00 am, and 1:00-2:30 pm if you need/would like to chat. We will get through this together! I love you all so very much and am thinking of you each and every day. :)


All my love,

Ms. Cetola

News From Our Social Worker- Mrs. Child

Chinn Panther and Graden Hornet families,

Please know Chinn and Graden are here for you during these challenging times. Please let us know what your unique and individual needs are during these unprecedented times. I have attached two lists if you are in need of food pantries or other resources. I will be available via email and phone if there are resources you need but cannot access. I will do my best to link you to available agencies if I cannot provide the help you need directly.

Please reach out to me or to our school counselors if you have questions.

KC Local Food Pantries.docx

Comprehensive Resources.docx


Carolyn Child, LCSW

Chinn/Graden School Social Worker


Nicole Natzke, Chinn Counselor

816.359.6138 or Natzken@parkhill.k12.mo.is

Cari Cetola, Graden Counselor

816.359.5647 or cetolac@parkhill.k12.mo.us

From Our PE Teacher- Coach Munsterman

April 6


Repeat the workout for 12 minutes taking a 30 second break in between workouts!


Coach Munsterman

Hello Graden Hornets,

Here is a link from Coach Munsterman............Here’s the latest link:



From Our Art Teacher- Mrs. Davidson


Hi there, students! It’s time for a new art lesson. This activity is optional, but I hope you get a chance to check it out! Click the link below for an art activity featuring the book Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold.


Days 1-10

Hi there, students! I hope you are all doing well. I have really been missing our time together in the art room, so I am making some video lessons for art you can make at home during your distance learning time. These activities are optional, but I hope you get a chance to check them out! Click the link below for our first lesson.


News from the Library- Mrs. Garcia

Parents, I’ve included video tutorials below to help support you and your child during this time of distance learning. The first is to access Overdrive/Sora which are eBooks and Audiobooks that can be checked out like normal library books. The second is for K-1 students to join a Google Classroom for additional reading/STEAM activities. Grades 2-5 have already joined the Google Classroom and can access them for additional activities as well, but if the code is needed, please reach out: garciat@parkhill.k12.mo.us. Each day, I will upload a different read aloud that either I’m reading or a famous author is reading. Activities completed DO NOT need to be returned to me. They are simply in an effort to keep learning diverse and fun! Again, if you have any questions, or find a link does not work for some reason, please feel free to reach out. I’m happy to help.

Overdrive/Sora: https://youtu.be/x2p8BIOa4sc

K-1 Google Classroom: https://youtu.be/_PFv5le1Is0

Keep reading!

Mrs. Garcia

From Our Nurse Kris

Graden Families,

Please know that the school nurse is available to answer questions or provide resources regarding everyday health concerns or Covid-19. Also, if you need to pick up medication from the heath room, you may contact her as well.

Nurse Kris

Kris Morris, BSN, RN

Graden School Nurse



Mrs. Brown & Dr. Ivy's Announcements 4/6/2020

This week we are starting our Fantasy Unit for reading. Below is an anchor chart describing this genre of reading. For many of our students, this is their favorite genre. We will share a list of book titles all students can access that would fit in this genre for the our reading assignments this week. Please encourage your child to commit to reading one of the novels we share. Getting lost in a good book is a special experience and we are hopeful all of our students will find a book to enjoy. If you have a book at home that fits this genre, your child is welcome to read that book even if it's not our list of books.
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For Day 13 ELA assignment

Below is a story arc or plot diagram to use for the events in the book your child is reading. Since they just started reading, they won't be able to finish the plot diagram yet. They should complete as much as they can through today's reading.
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Mrs. Thorson & Mrs. Vernon's Announcements 4/6/2020

Math - This week, we are diving into learning about new skills and concepts in Topic 12. In this Topic, students will be working with measurement conversions. This week will focus on all customary units of length, capacity, and weight. Each lesson will last for two days, and students will need to access both Google Classroom and Pearson (enVision).

Science - In science, we are also turning our attention to new learning about Earth's systems and how they interact with one another. This learning will culminate in a short online multiple choice test next Monday. Students will be able to use their notes and learning activities from this week while answering those multiple choice questions. Each day, there will be new science assignments posted, and students will need to access both Google Classroom and STEMScopes.

Email sent on Sunday, March 22, 2020


This upcoming week marks the start of a new adventure for all of us! We appreciate your partnership at home with distance learning. Our goal is to keep our students’ brains active and productive during this time away from our traditional learning environments. We are all in this together! As you know, the Park Hill School District has created grade-level assignments, which are posted on the district website. You can also find the 5th grade lessons directly by clicking here.

In an effort to help streamline important grade-level information for you, here are the important details for this first week of distance learning. Please read carefully.


o Students should refer to the grade-level assignments each day for activities and assignments.

o Students should access their ELA Google classroom to find directions about creating an Online Journal on a Google Doc. to keep all of their assignments in one place.

o Students also have access to several online resources located in their ELA Google Classroom for reading material if books are not available.

· Math:

o Students should complete the activities listed for each day of the grade-level assignments. These tasks are focused on problem-solving skills.

o Students should login to Google Classroom and join the new “Distance Learning – Math & Science” course. Announcements, assignment lists, and answer keys on select math assignments will be posted there.

o In addition, review assignments have been made for students online in enVision, which is accessible thorugh the PH Student Portal.

o The enVision assignments are available starting on Monday, and they are due on Friday. Students may “turn in” the Quick Check assignments as they are completed. So, this can be completed before Friday, if a student wishes.

· Science:

o Students should be logged in to the new Distance Learning course in Google Classroom. Announcements and assignment lists will be posted there.

o Review assignments have been made for students online in STEMScopes, again, accessible through the PH Student Portal.

o Assignments are available starting on Monday, and they are due on Friday. Students may “turn in” the eScopedia and video comprehension questions as they are completed. So, this can also be completed before Friday, if a student wishes.

o These assignments alternate with the social studies tasks provided in the district lessons for fifth grade.

As we move forward in this distance learning journey, please rely on the following for updated information regarding the district’s response to COVID-19 and for updated information about distance learning assignments:

o Park Hill website

o Email

o Google Classroom

We hope this message has been helpful! Please do not hesitate to reach out to your child’s teachers via email for any questions that may arise as we delve into the unknown. We are happy to help as best we are able!


Graden Fifth Grade Teachers

February Home Habits Connection

What does it mean to have a heart of a leader? Discuss with your family ways that each of your family members has the heart of a leader. Below, you will find a picture of the activity sheet. You can request a copy of the activity sheet from your child's homeroom teacher. Return the completed activity sheet to school, so we can show all the ways that Graden Hornets have hearts of leaders!
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Read-A-Thon 2020 Information

  • Week of 2/17-2/21: Students have set a goal for their reading minutes, and they are working on collecting pledges/donations (record on envelope).
  • Week of 2/24-2/28: Students are reading, reading, reading, and recording the minutes they are reading each day, both at school and at home.
  • Week of 3/2-3/6: Collect pledges and donations, place inside the envelope, and return the envelope to school with the minutes totaled, donations inside, and a parent signature on the back.

The funds raised by the PTA through this Read-A-Thon event go toward the funding of interest groups, classroom supplies, new and upgraded Field Day events, and new recess equipment for the 2020-2021 school year. Students, classes, and the school can earn prizes along the way the more reading we do and the more money is raised. We are grateful for your support of this PTA event!

Valentine's Day Party Pictures

Use this link to view lots of pictures from the 5th Grade Valentine's Day Party. Lots of fun was had! https://photos.app.goo.gl/ySc7ijqa4xMK1fYd7

Mrs. Thorson & Mrs. Vernon's Announcements 2/14/20

During the week of 2/17-2/21, we will be working with creating and analyzing line plots in Topic 10. As part of this data analysis, students will be able to find the median of a data set, as well as identify possible outliers in the data. Students will be using data displayed in line plots to answer questions and solve problems, as well. This unit is a short one, so the eventual unit test will be on the horizon in the near future. Students will record a test date, once it is determined, in their planners.

Due to the snow day and alternate schedule on Friday, February 14th, the Earth’s Rotation Science Test review will be Monday and the test will be Tuesday. Next, we will be studying “Objects in the Sky”. Students are expected to represent data in graphical displays to reveal patterns of daily changes in length and direction of shadows, day and night and the seasonal appearance of some stars in the night sky. We will learn about moon phases and the orbiting of Earth around the Sun and Moon around Earth. We will discover patterns that indicate relationships between the Earth, Sun and Moon.

Mrs. Brown & Dr. Ivy's Announcements 2/14/20

In writing, students have chosen their topics for debatable issues and will be starting the process of researching and writing. We will continue to model how to incorporate strong research-based evidence that supports both sides of their debatable topic using a graphic organizer and answering the question, “How does this evidence support my argument?” We are using the topic, Should Students Wear Uniforms in School? as a model. We will be researching both sides of this topic to model note-taking and unit expectations. Students will begin researching independently at the end of the week.

In reading, in addition to reading to research, we are focusing on how to recognize exaggerated, misleading, and contradictory text. Students will be taste-testing some Takis for an upcoming activity! Students are also continuing to review Greek and Latin roots and figurative language.

Boys and Girls Running Clubs Information

This spring, interested Graden students will be able to join either Girls On the Run or Let Me Run! Here is information about both clubs. For inquiries about either club, you can contact Ms. Effinger (Girls On the Run) or Mrs. Garcia (Let Me Run) directly at effingerm@parkhill.k12.mo.us or garciat@parkhill.k12.mo.us.

Girls On the Run:

Girls on the Run is a youth development program that teaches girls about confidence, positive self-image, and physical activity through interactive lessons, games, and running. Girls get to learn about themselves while forming strong friendships and having fun! Participants will celebrate completion of the program with the Girls on the Run 5K on Saturday, May 16th at SWOPE PARK. Register today at www.gotrkc.org!

Questions: Contact Maria Effinger at effingerm@parkhill.k12.mo.us

Ages: 8-11
Fee: $165, payment plans and financial assistance available
Duration: 10 weeks (March 2nd- May 16th)
Practice times: Mondays and Wednesdays 3:30-5:00
Website: www.gotrkc.org

Let Me Run (see photo of informational flyer):

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5th Grade Valentine's Day Party Donations

All donation needs have been met! Thank you so much for your support of this final, fun party of our elementary school careers! In case you have signed up to donate and need a reminder, you can reference the SignUp Genius at this link: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090c48a4a72aa31-5thgrade1

Mrs. Thorson & Mrs. Vernon's Announcements 2/7/2020

During the week of 2/10-2/14, we will be wrapping up Topic 9 and beginning Topic 10. Mrs. Vernon’s Topic 9 Post-Test will be on Tuesday, 2/11, and Mrs. Thorson’s will be on Wednesday, 2/12. In Topic 10, we will be creating line plots and using the information they display to analyze data and solve problems. We will be learning about outliers and medians in data sets. In addition, next week’s homework assignment will be a review of computational skills learned in Topics 1-9. It is due on Friday, 2/14.

In science, we are working on scope, “Earth’s Rotation”. Our essential question is, “Why does a flag pole’s shadow change throughout the day?” Students are expected to represent data in graphical displays to reveal patterns of daily changes in length and direction of shadows, day and night, and the seasonal appearance of some stars in the night sky. Students are also expected to generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem. It is fun to learn about shadows, our Earth, and astronomers with this scope! Mrs. Vernon’s science test for this scope is Friday, February 14th. Mrs. Thorson's test will be the following week.

Mrs. Brown & Dr. Ivy's Announcements 2/7/2020

In reading and writing, we are continuing our unit on debatable issues. Dr. Halverstadt was very impressed with the letters we wrote to her with our opinions/claims supported by strong evidence. Ask your child to show you his/her letter on Google Classroom! In preparation for the 5-paragraph essay students will be researching and writing, students will be annotating a practice paper using the Chocolate Milk Debate topic as a model. Students will be able to review expectations for their paper before beginning the process of researching and writing. Students will use the model to see how the opinion piece was written following an outline, stating a claim, thesis, and how to incorporate strong research-based evidence. Students will be reading and writing about a variety of debatable topics from Time for Kids and Scholastic News and will be choosing their topic of choice this week! We are also reviewing Greek and Latin roots including, bio- Greek root for “life”, chron- Greek root for “time”, and dict- Latin root for “say/declare”. There’s so much to learn about words! We also continue to review figurative language.

Mrs. Thorson & Mrs. Vernon's Announcements 1/31/2020

During our first week of February, we will be studying division with fractions - relating fractions and multiplication/division, dividing whole numbers by unit fractions and vice versa, and converting quotients to simplified mixed numbers.

In science, we are currently working on Unit 3: Earth and Space Science which includes Gravity, Observing the Stars, Earth’s Rotation, and Objects in the Sky. At this point in the unit, we are working on Observing the Stars. Students are expected to support an argument that differences in the apparent brightness of the sun compared to other stars is due to their relative distances from Earth. Please see your student’s planner for updates on when the test will be. As always, students have many resources to help with studying for tests. Notes in their composition notebooks, worksheets, and online resources are always available. After testing, we will study Earth’s Rotation where the students are expected to represent data in graphical displays to reveal patterns of daily changes in length and direction of shadows, day and night, and the seasonal appearances of some stars n the night sky. Again, this will all be updated in your child’s planner.

Mrs. Brown & Dr. Ivy's Announcements 1/31/2020

In reading and writing, we will be continuing researching our class debatable issue, "Should Chocolate Milk be Served in School Cafeterias?" Students have read and annotated 3 different articles with claims that are supported by reasons and backed by evidence. Students are learning to withhold judgement, read critically, and take notes to support all 3 claims. After understanding different perspectives and determining an opinion, students will be drafting and composing a letter to Dr. Halverstadt that states their claim and will be expected to support their claim with facts, statistics, and quotes. It's always exciting when Dr. Halverstadt writes us back! From there, students will follow a writing process to plan and write a draft which will include their claim about chocolate milk with strong supporting evidence.

We are also revisiting various types of figurative language including onomatopoeia, alliteration, hyperbole, personification, simile, metaphor, and idiom. Ask your child about their figurative language poster!

In social studies, we will continue to research and reflect on identifying political, economic, and social causes and consequences of the Civil War, WWI, WWII, and the Cold War this quarter.

Mrs. Thorson & Mrs. Vernon's Announcements 1/10/2020

During the week of 1/13-1/17, we will be involved in the study of multiplying fractions (Topic 8). We will start with multiplying a fraction by a whole number, and then progress to multiplying two fractions, before finishing the unit with multiplying mixed numbers. In this Topic, important skills continue to include being able to simplify fractions in addition to the ability to convert between mixed numbers and improper fractions. Next week’s homework will focus on our computational skills SMART goal, and will include computation problems that are a review of previously learned skills. It will be due on Friday, 1/17, as usual.

In science, we will finish up with our parachute drop proving that the gravitational force exerted by Earth on objects is directed toward the center of the Earth. It was great seeing their innovation and creativity in creating their own parachutes! We hope to review Wednesday, January 15th, and test on Thursday for the Gravity Scope. Our next scope is “Observing the Stars”, and students will be expected to support an argument that differences in the apparent brightness of the sun compared to others stars is due to their relative distances from Earth.

In the coming weeks...

In social studies, students will learn about several major wars in the United States, including the Civil War, World War I, World War II, and the Cold War. They will analyze causes, details, and consequences of each war. Students will connect the outcomes of each war to political, social, and cultural changes that still remain in our country today.

Mrs. Brown & Dr. Ivy's Announcements 1/10/2020

In reading and writing, we have been celebrating our hard work from 2nd quarter by doing Gallery Walks. Students read each other’s biographies on Book Creator and wrote down 3 new things they learned…it is so impressive to see what they learn from their peers! We will continue Gallery Walks with their State Informational Essays. Students will follow the same protocol and write down 3 new things about 3 different states.

An ongoing goal in 5th grade is non-fiction reading comprehension. Students read the latest Time for Kids and answered multiple choice comprehension questions based on the text. This serves as great practice for middle school reading comprehension expectations!

Next week, we will begin Unit 5: Researching Debatable Issues. Our first discussion will be centered around the use of cell phones in schools. Students will read 3 different opinions/claims and then form an opinion/claim of their own, backed up with research and evidence that supports their claim. Then, students will gather a list of possible topics for future quick writes. Students will use Scholastic News and Time for Kids to research opinion/debatable topics that interest them.

In the coming weeks...

In social studies, students will learn about several major wars in the United States, including the Civil War, World War I, World War II, and the Cold War. They will analyze causes, details, and consequences of each war. Students will connect the outcomes of each war to political, social, and cultural changes that still remain in our country today.

Coordinator Sign-Up for Room Parents

Dear Parents,

All classrooms at Graden will have 3 class parties this school year. Each of these parties will need a party coordinator. Party coordinators are in charge of:

  • Planning the activities, games, and snacks for the party
  • Creating a Sign Up Genius to ask for donations and volunteers
  • Overseeing/carrying out the party

The dates/times of our classroom parties are:

  • Halloween - Thursday, 10/31/19, 2:30-3:15 (Setup at 2:00, Parade at 2:15)
  • Winter - Friday, 12/20/19, 10:30-11:15 (Setup at 10:15)
  • Valentine - Friday, 2/14/20, 2:30-3:15 (Setup at 2:15)

If you are interested in planning one of the parties for your child's classroom, please sign up below. This sign-up includes all teachers for your grade level, so be sure to sign up for the correct classroom!

Please ONLY sign up if you are willing to be in charge of planning the party. This is not a sign-up for those wanting to send in supplies or help out at the party. Those sign-ups will come out at a later date, once the party coordinator has planned the party knows what they are in need of.


If you have any questions, please contact Lindsay Ramon, PTA Room Party Organizer, at lindsay.ramon@gmail.com

Thanks so much!!!

Habit Home Connections

Supplies are shown below for 5th grade students. The items on the left are considered "essential" and the items on the right are considered "optional", but greatly appreciated. Lists for all grades can be found on the Park Hill School District's web page.
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