Hawthorne Happenings - January

From the desk of Mr. Mahal

Dates to remember...

January 9 - PTO Meeting at 5:00 in the Media Center

January 13 - Semester 1 report cards sent home with students

January 16 - No School for students

And we're back!

Now that we have returned to school, our students will work to get back into their good academic habits that they established before break. This is the time when students will really "take off" with their daily learning. This is a true testament to the tremendous partnership our school has with our parents - thank you for your continued support in order for positive growth to happen between home and school!

2nd Step Assembly

Ms. Rohlik, Mrs. Nielsen, and our mascot AL held our monthly 2nd Step assembly to discuss "Perseverance". This message is important for our students to remember if/when they come across something that may be difficult for them. That difficult moment could be tying their shoe, trying to complete a problem in math, or how to handle a specific friendship. With anything, we need to do our best to persevere by continuing to practice, ask questions, and not give up - we can do anything we put our minds to! Perseverance; continued effort to achieve something despite difficulties or failures.

Drop Off/Pick Up Update

Our drop off/pick up system is overall going very well - thank you to all of you again for helping support us in making sure everyone stays safe during morning drop off or afternoon pick up!

A brief reminder for dropping off in the morning - please do not park your vehicle or drop your student(s) off in the middle of the street when dropping off on Sheridan. This is our only drop off area in order to keep Hawthorne Street clear of traffic for buses. If you do have to come in the building, please park on Sheridan past the blue handicap sign so the curb area prior to that is open for vehicles to quickly drop their student(s) off.

The afternoon pickup is also going well. We continue to try to help students being picked up get to their car quickly so there is also minimal parking happening on Sheridan. The more parents/family can stay in their car and then pull up to the loading area the better in allowing the "drive thru" effect to take place.

Hawthorne staff and student patrol is out front, in the back, and at the two different 4 way stop signs trying to keep everyone safe! If they ask you for something, please know it is in the best interest of the students and everyone's safety.

January Tech Tip

Age Gates - what are they?

Any online website or app that your child has to log into has some kind of age verification process in the creation of accounts known as an "Age Gate". These gates came about when the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) was passed in 1998 limiting the collection of information on children under 13. Some accounts, like those created by your teacher and our school district, have been through a strict vetting process on what information is collected and how it is used to benefit the education of your child. You can view all of these accounts created for your child by visiting the ISD#241 Software and Data Elements page which can be found on our district website.

It is important to talk with your child about what sites and apps they may be logging into OUTSIDE of school. Unfortunately, these "Age Gates" offer limited protection as they are EXTREMELY easy to bypass. All a child needs to do to get past an Age Gate is change their birth year when creating an account to something that meets the minimum age to join. As a parent/guardian, it is important to talk with your child about why sites or apps have Age Gates and why they should NEVER falsify information to get past one. Often times children are unaware of WHY these age gates are in place and may join apps or sites out of peer pressure because friends already have access. Some sites and apps will allow children under 13 to create an account ONLY AFTER a parent or guardian agrees to the child joining the site or app. Typically accounts created for children under 13 at home will require a parent's email to accept the terms of service, and will sometimes even be restricted in what access to the app or site is granted by age. Apps and Online games/sites can be a safe place for children under 13, but be sure to check all of the privacy settings when you first join. An example of this may be going into the settings on Snapchat and restricting the SNAP Map(GPS location) so that your 12-year-old cannot share their location. S

Accounts created by children that have falsified their age to bypass the "Age Gate" CAN and often DO place your child in undue harm by exposing them to content that is not meant for them, which may include vulgar or objectionable content and in some cases even pornographic material.

Here are some "Age Gates" for common apps or sites your child may have an account: Call of Duty (18), Snapchat(13), Instagram(13), Roblox(None/Account under 13 restricted IF Parent PIN), TikTok(13), Discord(13), Be Real(13), Xbox Live(18 for an unrestricted account), Playstation Network(18 for an unrestricted account), Nintendo Account(18 without Parent account)

Winter Clothing Reminder

A reminder to be sure to send your child(ren) to school each day with their winter clothing on! Hats, gloves, scarfs, snow pants, boots, and jackets are all very much needed now that we are in the thick of winter. Students will be outside in the morning or at recess provided the “feels like” temperature is above zero. Thank you!

Want to get involved at Hawthorne?

Our PTO and school is always looking for more helping hands! If you are interested in getting involved but not sure how, please reach out to us by email at alhawthornepto@gmail.com to find out where we could use your help.

The PTO values the community that we serve and we want to hear from you. Help us to be the true voice of the families at Hawthorne Elementary School. Please join us every second Monday at 5:00 PM to share your ideas. Hope to see you there!

The more you know...

Conversations about school

When you think of parent involvement, do you picture moms and dads volunteering in classrooms? That's one way to help - but research shows that supporting your child's education at home is even more important. Here are conversation starters that will help you stay involved.

"Let's see what you worked on today"

Look at completed work to find out what your youngster is learning and how we'll he/she is doing. You could comment on their math work or social studies project, for instance. ("You know a lot about our state's history!") Also, respond to notes from the teacher, and sign their planner If they have one) if required.

"Describe a book you enjoyed today"

This give you an idea of what your youngster prefers to read. Then, build a daily reading habit by asking what he/she'd like to read tonight. Encourage him/her reading and listening skills by reading aloud to him/her and letting them read to you.

"Tell me what you learned that you'd like to know more about."

Use his/her interests as jumping-off points for activities to share. If he/she like geometry, you might hunt shapes together. If he/she's fascinated by how animals adapt to winter, read a book or observe animals outside.