Soaring to Communicate

From the Desk of Kassia Sutton

Dear Families,

It has been a great first semester of school. The faculty and I appreciate your unwavering support as we collaborate to ensure that learning occurs at high levels for our Eagles. Thank you for participating in our Family Engagement Events and the other opportunities to learn and build your capacity to support our Eagles. Your child seeing you engaged is important to his/her motivation and engagement.

Being at school each day and being on time for school is important for the success of your child. When a student is absent or late, critical information is missed. While the teacher does provide make-up work, students miss the opportunity to collaborate with their peers and practice the skills of listening and speaking about the content. Please make appointments after school or during long breaks.

As we move into the Holiday Season, please keep the expectations high for your child and continue to hold them accountable for learning, yes, even during the Winter Break. Encourage your child to read during the break. Also, our teachers will provide extensions of learning during the break to keep the skills sharp.

We are always in need of helping hands. Please contact our parent center (see article below) for opportunities to volunteer and support our school.

Thank you for partnering with us!


Kassia Sutton


The Mission, Vision, and Beliefs of NES

Our mission is to create a world-class learning environment that fosters creativity, critical thinking, and pursue excellence in academic knowledge, skills, and behavior for each scholar that will meet or exceed national global standards.

Our vision is for educators to create a community of successful,

self-motivated, life-long learners who will become responsible and productive citizens.”

We believe…

* In the partnership of the home,

school, and community in

educating all children;

* Every student has a right to a

quality education in a safe, child-

centered environment;

* In high and consistent academic

and behavioral expectations;

* Everyone has value and deserves


Parent Center News

Mr. Robert Fortenbery, Parent Instructional Coordinator, and Mrs. Amarilis Rodriguez, Parent Outreach Liaison, would like to welcome you to Norcross Elementary School for the 2019-2020 School Year and to the Parent Center. The beginning of the year has been jammed packed with events and information for parents and students. So far, we have had five (5) Title 1 events: Annual Meetings (2), Staff Development, Curriculum Night, and ESOL ACCESS Orientation. Three (3) School wide events: Hispanic Heritage Month, Monster Math Night, and International Night. Teachers/Parents Conferences were held in October.

Mrs. Rodriguez teaches English Classes to parents on Tuesday and Thursday from 9am -12pm. We are also working with the Norcross Library to bring “Let’s Talk” every Tuesday from 10am -11am for parents to practice their English speaking skills with help from a Norcross Library Instructor.

We have just started the “Play 2 Learn” class for parents and children (from birth - 5 years of age). The class is every Wednesday from 10:00am – 11:30am. We are still enrolling for this program.

Mrs. Rodriguez and Mr. Fortenbery are here to help and provide resources to both parents and students at home for academic learning. Please let us know when you would like to come, so we can assist you with your academic needs. As a team, our Eagles Will Soar!

Holiday Concert by Annie Kim, Music Teacher

The Chorus and the NES Step Team are performing at the Holiday Concert on Thursday, December 12 at 5:30pm in the gym. We hope to see you there!

Counseling Spotlight on Bullying by Amber Amick and Amy Crapo

It is important to distinguish between rude, mean, and bullying behavior so that parents, teachers, counselors, school administrators and kids all know what to pay attention to and when to intervene.

From kids, rudeness might look more like burping in someone’s face, jumping ahead in line, bragging about achieving the highest grade, or even throwing a crushed up pile of leaves in someone’s face.

Kids are mean to each other when they criticize clothing, appearance, intelligence, coolness, or just about anything else they can find to belittle. Make no mistake; mean behaviors can wound deeply and adults can make a huge difference in the lives of young people when they hold kids accountable for being mean. Yet, meanness is different from bullying and should be understood when it comes to intervention.

Experts agree that bullying entails three key elements: an intent to harm, a power imbalance and repeated acts or threats of aggressive behavior. Kids who bully say or do something intentionally hurtful to others and they keep doing it, with no sense of regret or remorse -- even when targets of bullying show or express their hurt or tell the aggressors to stop.

It is important to distinguish between rude, mean, and bullying so that teachers, school counselors, school administrators, parents, and kids all know what to pay attention to and when to intervene.

If a student is dealing with a “rude” or “mean” classmate or friend; ask them if they used any of Kelso’s Choices. The counselors have taught K-5th grade students 9 ways to deal with small problems. However, if your child is being bullied, please tell them to ask help from an adult immediately. When adults respond quickly and consistently to bullying behavior they send the message that it is not acceptable. Research shows this can stop bullying behavior over time.

Source: Whtson,S. Psychology Today. September 7, 2016

Spotlight on Safety and Security

Safety drills are conducted monthly. During the months of August, September, and October fire drills were conducted. In November, a severe weather drill was conducted. In December, we will conduct a fire drill and a hard lockdown drill.

Coaching Spotlight: Winter Break Reading

Winter Break Reading Tips

The first day of winter break is Friday, December 20th. Although our eagles will be on break from school, they do not have to take a break from reading. Here are a few tips for reading during the break.

1. Read for Fun- Whether your child enjoys winter related stories, or a book from their favorite series, winter break is the perfect opportunity to read for fun. Make time to enjoy books every day your child is away from school.

2. Visit the Public Library- Help your child pick out books they’re interested in reading over the winter break. Libraries may also have fun, free activities throughout the break.

3. Read a Book Together- Select a book you and your child can read together over the break. This is an excellent opportunity for your child to read a book that might be too challenging to read independently.

4. Make Reading a Family Event- Sharing books or stories with the family is a great winter tradition. Our eagles can learn a lot from watching the adults in their lives. If they see their parents reading and enjoying books, they will want to read as well. Consider adding some hot cocoa and make it a reading party.

5. Read Anything and Everything- Encourage your children to read anywhere and anything. Magazines, newspapers, cereal boxes, and signs are all excellent choices to practice reading.

During your break, take time to read a little each day.

We all become better readers by reading. Enjoy your break.

Coaching Spotlight: Parents Helping with Math At Home

Doing Mathematics with Your Child

ERIC Digest

by Martin D. Hartog and Patricia A. Brosnan

Parents have a wonderful opportunity and responsibility for nurturing children. This nurturing process takes place in several areas of development: physical, emotional, and intellectual. While parents can usually find time to read a story to their children, thereby instilling a love for literature, they are often at a loss as to how to instill a love and appreciation for mathematics.

Like reading, mathematics is a subject that is indeed necessary for functioning adequately in society. More than that, mathematics is a subject that should be more enjoyable than it sometimes is. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) has identified the appreciation and enjoyment of mathematics as one of the national goals for mathematics education. This goal, coupled with the task of nurturing children's confidence in their ability to apply their mathematical knowledge to solve real-life problems, is a challenge facing every parent today.

Below are a few ideas to keep the skills sharp over the Winter Break.

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What Is RTI? by Georgia Neblett

Response to Intervention (RTI) is a multi-tier approach to the early identification of students with learning and behavior needs.

How can I be involved in RTI?

Parents play a critical role in supporting what their children are learning. The more parents are involved in student learning the higher the student achievement.

Parents can be involved in the following ways:

· Inform the school about anything that might affect your child’s learning ( e.g. frequent absences, traumatic event)

· Attend parent-teacher conferences and meetings about your child

· Monitor and assist with homework

· Praise your child as he/she improves and discuss any issues

· Implement and reinforce instructional and behavioral interventions at home

Tech Savy by Kyle Salo

Our kids are on the front lines of a digital revolution. Devices, social networks, and media are changing childhood in radical ways. We all want kids to grow up healthy and happy as the world accelerates around them. We, as parents and educators need to make sure our kids are prepared and informed digital citizens. Digital citizenship refers to responsible technology usage, and teaching digital citizenship is essential to helping students achieve and understand digital literacy, as well as ensuring cyberbully prevention, online safety, digital responsibility, and digital health & wellness. Please visit to empower your family with the information they need to be advocates for your children.

Physical Education News from Coach Stancil

Hello everybody, my name is Daniel W. Stancil. I teach Physical Education at Norcross Elementary School. I truly enjoy teaching and coaching our youth! We are off to a great start in P.E. and we want to continue to educate your children about the importance of fitness. The P.E. department wants to develop a solid foundation on the understanding of health and wellness, especially at a young age. Also, please remind your child to wear the proper attire and tennis shoes on the days they have P.E. I am looking forward to building confidence in all children, while teaching them the importance of friends, fun, and fitness!

The focus for kindergarten through third grade will be on spatial awareness, creative movement, safety in the gym, and working together in game-related activities. Also, balance and hand-eye-coordination will help each child to develop proper motor skills and communication. Our goal is to build confidence in every child and to help them understand the importance of physical activity.

The focus for our fourth and fifth grade students will be on physical fitness and health related activities. All fourth and fifth grade classes will be participating in the fitness gram assessment throughout the school year. These assessments will measure cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, and flexibility. This is a wonderful assessment tool for students to understand the importance of health related fitness. Your child may perform some of these testing events at home. We encourage you to join in with them. Our goal for the students is to participate in some type of physical activity every day!

The morning fitness club, I like to call Active Start, is going awesome. The students that signed up are enjoying fun activities and starting their day with fun games and competitions, which can enhance learning and skill development. The Active Start fitness club is helping students better understand how exercise plays an important role in academic learning.

Thank you so much and I am so glad to be a part of Norcross Elementary School.

Holiday Reading by Tahnya Sheerwood, Media Specialist

A fun reading incentive for the Holiday winter break

Students need to read 20 minutes a day, here is a fun way to encourage them to read.

1. Write the Title of the book you read on the line.

2. Color in one bingo row & win an eraser

3. Color in ALL BINGO squares & win a UV PEN

4. Return to Media Center by January 6th and win a Prize

5. Each Participant will be entered into a drawing for a FREE BOOK!

6. Have your parents post a picture of you reading on the media center Facebook page

Lost and Found

If your child has lost anything, please visit our lost and found located in the school courtyard. There are jackets, sweatshirts, and miscellaneous items left unclaimed. Please be sure to label your child’s clothing so lost items can be identified. Please remind your child to check the lost and found if they are missing items. Thank you.

Upcoming Dates

December 13: Spelling Bee at 9:00am

December 19: Student of the Month at 2:30pm

December 20: End of first semester; Classroom Holiday Parties

December 23 - January 3: Winter Break

January 6: Students return to school

January 10: Report Cards sent home

January 16: Georgia Milestone Parent Informational Meeting

January 20: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday

February 5: Science/Technology/Literacy NIght

February 14: Inclement Weather Make-up ay or Student/Teacher Holiday

February 19 - 20: Early Release Conferences