Clemens Crossing Cougar Comments

January 10, 2020 - Volume 41, Issue 17

Clemens Crossing Elementary School

Edward Cosentino, Principal

Sonia Hurd, Assistant Principal

Important Upcoming Dates and Events

For a complete list of dates and events visit


  • 10 - Purple Friday - Support the Ravens!
  • 11 - PTA Roller Skate Night at Supreme Sports Club, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
  • 13 - WLMS 6th Grade Orientation, 6:30 p.m.
  • 16 - Lifetouch Memory Mission FacebookLive Session - 9:30 a.m.
  • 16 - Winter Strings Concert, 6:30 p.m.
  • 16 - Winter Band Concert, 7:30 p.m.
  • 20 - Schools and Offices Closed: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • 23 - Parent Orientation for CCES families redistricted to Bryant Woods ES, 6:00 p.m. (at BWES cafeteria)
  • 23 - Parent Orientation for incoming Swansfield ES families at CCES, 7:00 p.m.
  • 24 - Compliment Day 2020
  • 24 - End of the Second Quarter
  • 27 - Schools Closed for Students
  • 28 - The Great Kindness Challenge Begins
  • 29 - In-School Banking, 9:00 a.m.
  • 29 - Makers Faire, 6:15 p.m.
  • 30 - HCPSS Connect Opens in Family File for Conference Scheduling


  • 1 - Black History Month Begins
  • 3 - School Counselor's Week
  • 3 - Report Cards Issued
  • 12 - PTA Restaurant Night - Chick-fil-a (Johns Hopkins Road)
  • 13 - Elementary Schools Close Early for Parent/Teacher Conferences (Math), 12:45 p.m.
  • 14 - Elementary Schools Close Early for Parent/Teacher Conferences (Math), 12:45 p.m.
  • 17 - Schools and Offices Closed: President's Day
  • 25 - Vision & Hearing Screening
  • 26 - In-School Banking, 9:00 a.m.
  • 27 - CCES School Play - Aladdin Kids - (held at Wilde Lake Middle School), 6:30 p.m.

To subscribe to the CCES calendar on your smartphone, electronic device, or email system use the calendar ID

From CCES PTA President

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful winter break and are adjusting to the new year. I wanted to remind everyone about a few things. We know that it's hard for many of you to attend our monthly meetings. We are all so busy. We add each month's agenda and minutes to the PTA website ( for all to see. Please take a minute when you get a chance and check out what we are doing. Let us know if you have any questions or want to help out with anything.

Several people have asked me for the PTA directory lately. This year HCPSS has made the directory available for all families via Family File. Simply log in to HCPSS Connect and you will see it.

Most of the time, our PTA information is located at the bottom of the Cougar Comments newsletter. Please scroll all the way down to check for important information.

Thank you! We hope to see many of you at Skate Night this weekend and/or Family Fit Night on January 31.

Dani Gardner, CCES PTA President



The middle of the school year is a great time for families to check in with students on goals. Setting academic and personal goals helps motivate, energize, and focus students, and it is a valuable skill that will benefit learners throughout their lives. Parents can help students set and achieve these goals.

Goal-setting can be tedious, even intimidating, for some students. Parents can support

students in this process by following these steps: pick it, map it, do it, own it, and celebrate


Pick it. Encourage your child to consider his or her dreams and passions and pick goals

that are important and meaningful. Guide your child to think about, “What motivates me? What would inspire me to give my best effort? What would make me feel good while I’m doing it? What achievement would make me feel proud?”

Map it. After your child picks a goal, help map the path from where he or she is now to

where the child wants to be. Offer the following analogy: If we want to drive across the

country from New York to California, we don’t just get in our car and start driving—we get a map, pick a route, and follow it until we get to California. With your child, analyze

different approaches and define clear steps to reach their goal. For instance, if the goal is

to get a higher test grade in a tough subject, each quiz or project is a step on the path to

the higher goal: earning an A.

Do it. Once you and your child have mapped a path to their goal, encourage him or her to take action, focus on the first step and give it his or her best effort. Remind your child that no goal is ever reached without focused action.

Own it. As your child makes progress toward their goal, help him or her to take

responsibility for making it happen. Teach the mantra, “If it’s to be, it’s up to me!” Reflect with your child. Ask, “How are you doing? What’s working? What’s not working? What can you or your family change to get to this goal?” From there, analyze the map, and make changes to the plan if necessary. Help your child keep a positive attitude and own mistakes as well as successes. Remind your child that if something comes along that holds him or her back temporarily, to look at the experience as feedback. Failures, or bumps in the road, can provide us with information we need to succeed. Reinforce the message that we can learn from our mistakes and move on with new, valuable knowledge.

Celebrate it. Acknowledgment and celebration are huge parts of achieving goals.

Acknowledge every effort and celebrate your child’s mini-successes along the way to

achieving a goal. This builds his or her confidence and motivation. Your child will feel good and understand that perseverance will result in another mini-success and finally goal achievement. Try going through the goal-setting process as a family. Pick a family goal (perhaps a charitable activity) and work together to achieve it. After the family experience, have each family member pick a personal goal. Support and acknowledge one another as you move through the above steps. Success is assured when students believe in themselves and in their ability to achieve. Parents are key to helping them believe and succeed.

Report to Parents, written to serve elementary and middle-level principals, may be reproduced by the National Association of Elementary School Principals members without


Calling all Makers!

We are looking for Makers to display items at our 2nd Annual Maker Faire on January 29, 2020!

What is a Maker Faire?

A Maker Faire is a gathering of people interested in Science, Technology, Math, Art, Sustainability, Creativity, and Innovation. The Faire will consist of hands-on activities centered around unique solutions, creativity, and construction.

Who is a maker?

Anyone can be a maker! All you have to do is use your creativity and skill to make something that solves a problem.

We are looking for student makers interested in displaying and sharing items they have created!

Items could include, but are not limited to:

-A model using Lego

-A handmade musical instrument

-A tool to solve a problem

-crochet/knitting project


-Handmade toy

If your student/family is interested in sharing items at the Maker Faire, please complete the information below.

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The Great Kindness Challenge 2020

We are excited to announce that we are participating in The 2020 Great Kindness Challenge where we will join thousands of schools across the country to create a culture of kindness.

Your child is part of a powerful and positive bullying prevention initiative that will lead to more kindness, unity, and respect at school and beyond. We will participate in the challenge between January 28th and February 7th.

As part of the Great Kindness Challenge, we are going to have a fun-spirited week during The Great Kindness Challenge. Each day is designated as a Spirit Day with a theme (see below).

For more information on The Great Kindness Challenge, please visit: Thank you in advance for helping to create a culture of kindness and compassion in our community and beyond!

To learn more and to read about the Counseling Program at Clemens Crossing click here:

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Change Matters!

To help build upon this momentum of the Great Kindness Challenge, we are participating in a unifying service project: Change Matters!
Change Matters! is a collection of spare change to benefit our local homeless shelter, The Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center.

All students are invited to participate by giving their extra coins! The money we raise will go towards supporting this important service in our own neighborhood. This is a great opportunity for our students to respond to the needs of others, which teaches empathy and compassion.

To kick off our campaign week, Kim Steffans, an authorized representative of Grassroots, will present the campaign to Kindergarten-grade 5 students during lunch shifts on January 21, 2020.

If you are able to donate, please send the change in your child's lunch bag or backpack during this campaign week through January 31, 2020.

Celebrating Black History Month

Thank you to those who contribute to our display case in the front of the school. It ’s time to start thinking about our next display, which will be for Black History Month in February. We are once again encouraging the community to participate by sending in anything that represents this culture. You may begin sending in your items as soon as possible. Please be sure to label items with your child’s name and homeroom so we may return it. Thanks in advance!

Cultural Awareness Schedule

  • Feb: Black History Month
  • March: Women's History Month
  • March: Youth Art Month
  • April: Arab American Heritage Month
  • May: Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Parent/Teacher Conferences in February

  • Parent/Teacher Conferences are scheduled for February 13 and 14.
  • Conferences will be with your child's Math Teacher.
  • In order to schedule conferences, you will need to login to HCPSS Connect.
  • HCPSS Connect will open to schedule your conferences on Thursday, January 30.
  • Conference scheduling will be open until Tuesday, February 11.
  • The directions for parent conference registration linked here from the HCPSS website. You can also download the directions from the icon below.
  • If you have any questions, please call the front office at 410-313-6866.
  • Please note: This is the second of two conference periods for the school year.

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Message for Families Redistricted to Bryant Woods ES

The Welcoming Committee at BWES is excited to invite all of our incoming families to our January 23, 2020 orientation! Moving to a new school is a huge change for students and families, so we want to make sure the transition is seamless. So, you may be wondering . . .

What time is the orientation?
The Bryant Woods Elementary School Orientation is on Thursday, January 23, 2020 from 6:00 - 7:00 pm. at Bryant Woods ES

Can students attend the Orientation?
Of course! We want our new students to get a look at their new school too.

Will we have a chance to meet teachers and staff?
You will meet the Principal, Assistant Principal and other members of the school leadership team. Several of our teachers are planning to attend as well. Our PTA President will be there to greet you too!

Will dinner be provided?
No dinner, however, we will have a few snacks for you to much on.

Will I have the opportunity to ask questions?
Definitely! We will collect questions so that we can start a Q & A on our website.

Will there be a tour of the school?
Of course! We have a fun activity set up for you to explore “The Woods.”

We are super excited to meet our new families! If you have any questions about this event please contact our Front Office at 410-313-6859.

Kelley Hough, BWES Principal

Danielle Shanks, BWES Assistant Principal

Information Worth Repeating

From Mr. Cosentino

Dear CCES Community,

I am writing to inform you that I will be on leave from January 13 through January 21. I was selected to be part of the Lifetouch Memory Mission to continue to build a school in Constanza, Dominican Republic. Lifetouch is a national photography company owned by Shutterfly. Each year, Lifetouch selects educators from all across the United States and Canada to help build schools in communities around the world. I will be part of a group that will be adding on to the Cecaini Rio Grande School; a school that was built during the 2016-18 Memory Missions.

During my absence, Mrs. Hurd will be at school to assist with any needs. There are two days during that time where Mrs. Hurd will be in meetings outside of school. Mrs. Sophia Quirk, Deep Run Elementary School Assistant Principal, will be at CCES in her place all day on January 14 and a half-day on January 21.

Lifetouch is also working with me to help plan a Facebook Live session where I will be able to communicate with our school while I am in the Dominican Republic. I hope we can use this brief time to bridge our two school communities and cultures. The Facebook Live session is scheduled for Thursday, January 16 at 9:30 a.m.

I look forward to sharing my experiences with our school community. Stay tuned!

Mr. Cosentino, Principal

Fundraising for The Memory Mission 2020

If you are interested in donating to help build the Memory Mission school, feel free to donate any amount here. Thank you.

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Road To Kindergarten

Do you have a child who will be 5 years old by September 1, 2020?

Do you have a neighbor who has a child who will be 5 years old by September 1, 2020?

If you said yes, to either question above, please review and/or share this information.

Please join us for an information session about kindergarten in the Howard County Public School System.

At this workshop you will learn:

  • Expectations for school readiness (and receive a Ready for Kindergarten toolkit).
  • Details about the kindergarten program.
  • Information about HCPSS kindergarten registration.
  • Ways that families and children can be supported during the transition to kindergarten.

Sessions are designed for adults only. Child care is available for children ages 2 and older. Doors will open at 6 p.m. to allow time for parking, child care drop off, and check-in. Sessions begin promptly at 6:30. We anticipate large crowds so please allow yourself ample time.

Choose a session that is convenient for you. No registration required.

All sessions will be held from 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Wednesday, January 22
Hammond High School, 8800 Guilford Road, Columbia

Thursday, January 23
Oakland Mills High School, 9410 Kilimanjaro Road, Columbia

Wednesday, January 30
Centennial High School, 4300 Centennial Lane, Ellicott City


Wednesday, February 19
Hammond High School, 8800 Guilford Road, Columbia

To learn more information about preparing for Kindergarten, visit the following page on the HCPSS website:

Kindergarten registration begins Monday, March 9, 2020 in-person and online.


Families who are redistricted to Bryant Woods ES will need to register at BWES.

Families redistricted from Swansfield ES, and designated to go to Clemens Crossing ES, will need to register at CCES.

In-School Banking - January 29

CCES teamed up with First National Bank to provide banking opportunities for our students.
In-School Banking takes place once a month on the last Wednesday of each month between

9:00 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. in the Cafeteria. You can find all of the dates on our school calendar.

Students can start banking at any time during the year. Here is the letter from First National Bank as well as the Banking Information Sheet needed to open an account:

First National Bank Letter

In School Banking Form

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Winter Concerts

If you cannot attend the Winter Strings and Band concerts in person, we have the next best thing. You can listen to and see the concerts live on Periscope through our Twitter feed. Simply visit on January 17 at 6:30 p.m. for the strings concert and 7:30 p.m. for the band concert. Feel free to share the information with family and friends.

Please be sure to select Clemens Crossing ES

Cougar Feedback

Feel free to leave comments about CCES using the form below.
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Come join us for our annual CCES Skate Night!

The CCES PTA is sponsoring a skate night on Saturday, January 11 from 4:30p-6:30p at Supreme Sports Center on Deepage Drive. Admission is free! You can bring your own skates or rent a pair for $4 (CASH ONLY). A waiver is required for ALL participants (adults included). Please note that the waiver MUST be signed by a parent or legal guardian of minors in case you plan on bringing friends along. [NO EXCEPTIONS] You can get a copy of the waiver ahead of time:

Hope you can come join the fun! Questions? Contact Christy Pine at

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PTA Roller Skate Night

Saturday, Jan. 11th, 4:30-6:30pm

7080 Deepage Drive

Columbia, MD

PTA Family Fit Night

Friday, Jan. 31st, 6:30-8pm

10320 Quarterstaff Road

Columbia, MD