Welcome to Kindergarten!

Collegewood Elementary-Developing Minds and Nurturing Hearts

Welcome to Collegewood!

My name is Dr. Mary Wendland and I am the proud principal of Collegewood Elementary. I am eager to have you and your child join the Collegewood family. Our team is grateful that you have entrusted your child to our care. We balance a rigorous, engaging academic curriculum with the development of social and emotional learning to provide students with the foundation they need to be well-balanced, compassionate, critical thinkers. I am confident that it is going to be a wonderful year for your child! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email me directly by clicking on my name below.

Be safe and be well,

Mary Wendland, Ed.D

A Message From Dr. Wendland

Welcome Back Kindergarten

Welcome to Kindergarten!

School Information

This is such an unusual time across our country for several reasons. As information about the upcoming school year is confirmed, I will be sharing that with you via emails and newsletters. Walnut Valley Unified will be working in partnership with the local health department and governing agencies to create a learning environment that is safe for all students and staff. We will begin the school year with online instruction. The hours of school operation will be from 8:30 to1:30 M-TH and 8:30-1:10 on Fridays. During this time, your child will be expected to be participating in live virtual lessons and completing work. Attendance will be monitored and work will be graded to determine levels of mastery for students. You have two choices for learning at this time:

Option 1: Traditional instructional model

This option will begin with online learning indefinitely. Should the time come allowing students to return to campus with safety protocols in place, your child would return to campus

Option 2: Distance Learning

For students with health and/or family member health considerations during the COVID-19 pandemic, WVUSD is implementing a plan to allow students to opt into a 100% Independent Study/Distance Learning approach if and when we choose to implement a full-time or split schedule instructional model to include in-person teaching.

If you opt for 100% Distance Learning, please confirm your commitment by Wednesday, July 22, 2020 so that we can plan accordingly. You can CLICK HERE to indicate your confirmation to opt into 100% Distance Learning.

We will be hosting a webinar on Monday, July 20th at 3 PM to share detailed information regarding instructional options. You can join this online meeting by clicking HERE

Daily Schedule

8:30 School begins

9:45 Recess/Snack from home

11:00 Lunch

1:30 Dismissal

Friday is our schoolwide early out day. On Friday TK and Kindergarten students are dismissed at 1:10


When we return to campus, your child will have the option to purchase a school lunch. If you choose to purchase a school lunch for your child you can deposit money into his or her account at any time.

Click here to place $ in your child's account

If your child has a food allergy, please make sure to contact the office to receive a special form that needs to be completed so that the allergy will be including in our nutrition system or complete it HERE. You will also need to add this information during the re-registration process online under the "Medical History" page.

Mark Your Calendar

August 3rd: Re-Registration You will need to complete the registration forms online prior to your child beginning school. Please see the information below for detailed information.

August 6th: Back To School Night
On the afternoon of August 6th, parents are invited to attend an informational meeting. During this time, you will meet your child's teacher and learn about the curriculum and specific information about our school. However, due to current limitations, we will offer this virtually this year. Please stay tuned for additional information regarding this event with links to online meeting spaces.

August 10th: First Day of School More information regarding the details of the first day of school will be sent out as it gets closer. Be sure to check your email regularly for up to date information. Although this will begin our launch for online instruction, it will be different than what we experienced last spring. Live instruction will occur daily, attendance will be monitored and all student work will be graded.

Re-Registration Process

Please CLICK HERE to complete online registration forms prior to the start of school. Collegewood uses this process for all students using the AERIES Parent Portal. This process is required each year so that contact and health information is current. If you forgot your password to access the portal, please click on FORGOT PASSWORD. You will receive an email that prompts you to reset your password. The email will be sent to the email you used to initially register your child.

Please CLICK HERE if you need directions on how to complete this process

Please CLICK HERE for a short tutorial video on the process

Kindergarten Readiness

This is a very exciting time for you and your child with so many precious memories to be made! There are many things you can do to help your child prepare for a successful academic journey.

Preparing for Online Learning

We believe that learning is best provided in person with opportunities for social interaction and hands-on learning experiences. The learning environment we are preparing is in response to the world-wide COVID-19 Pandemic. It is important to prepare your child for learning in this way because developmentally, children at this age are wired to move and be social during instruction. With this in mind, please consider the following pieces of information:

  • Create a learning space that is free of distraction in a well-lit part of your home
  • Make sure devices are fully charged the night before
  • Remind family members that if they walk behind your child's computer, they will be in view of all students and their respective family members. It is important that clothing and language be appropriate for an elementary school setting.
  • Maintain a schedule that you would follow if your child was to attend school on campus. Make sure your child has time to eat breakfast before starting class. Your child should be dressed for school when online instruction begins.
  • Respect instructional time. If you have questions or concerns you want to address with your child's teacher, you can email him or her to set up a time to talk outside of class time. Parents and care-givers should not interrupt instruction to talk with the teacher.
  • Respect the relationship between the teacher and your child. We do not expect parents or caregivers to take on the role of the teacher. If your child is in class and requires help or has questions, allow the teacher to respond to your child.
  • Respect the educational setting and save snacks and meals for times that are outside the online learning sessions.
  • Prepare your child for this learning environment and involve them in setting up the learning space to help them feel excited about starting school.


  • Your child can practice writing his or her name with a capital letter at the beginning and lowercase letters to follow
  • Your child can practice counting to 20 and if he or she is up for the challenge, practice writing the numbers, too
  • Practice recognizing letters and their corresponding sounds HERE

Socially and Emotionally

  • Your child will need to be able to sit and focus on instruction for about 20 minutes at a time. One way you can prepare your child for this is to read stories or put puzzles together for 20 minutes before taking a break.
  • Foster independence by making sure your child can go to the bathroom alone and button pants etc... Your child should be able to open and close any containers you might send for lunch or snack without help.
  • Practice separation, especially if your child has never been left with anyone outside of the primary parental or care-giver role. Going to school with an unknown adult can be overwhelming to small children. You may want to watch the video in this newsletter or drive by the school with your child to get him or her excited about school.
  • Practice sharing by helping your child participate in board games and not winning. This will help your child interact with peers more easily.
  • Help your child name their feelings so that they can advocate for themselves in school. For example, help your child understand the difference between feeling sad, mad, frustrated, and scared.

Growing up is a journey and each child reaches milestones at their own pace. Whether your child can do all of the things listed above or none of them, our team is here to meet each child where they are to help them reach their potential and be their best self.

Big picture

Shoe Tying

We would greatly appreciate it if parents would help your child learn to tie their shoes over the summer. Or perhaps, purchase shoes with velcro. As laces become lose they present a safety hazard for our students.
Learn To Tie Your Shoes!

Key Contacts

Mary Wendland- Principal mwendland@wvusd.k12.ca.us

Laura O'Donnell- Elementary Learning Specialist lodonnell@wvusd.k12.ca.us

Tamie Liptak- Administrative Assistant tliptak@wvusd.k12.ca.us

Gaby Manganiello- Office Assistant gmanganiello@wvusd.k12.ca.us

Annette Sanchez- Health Technician asanchez@wvusd.k12.ca.us

Erica Robledo- School Counselor erobledo@wvusd.k12.ca.us

All About Collegewood

Collegewood is an award-winning school that has been recognized for the Golden Bell award (2019) and the PBIS Platinum Award. We are a learning community that works to develop the minds and hearts of our students