Words from Walsh November, 2021

Staying connected with Walsh School

Greetings from Principal Martin

Hello Walsh Families,

Welcome to Fall! I think the season finally changed, which is great for me, as I love the autumn. I also love sharing some of the exciting things we've been doing in school. Look for some of the memories we captured on our field trip and around the building as you continue to read. Also in this month's newsletter, you will find information about the Child Lures Program, Parent/Teacher Conferences, and Walsh spirit wear, among other things.

We are excited to offer you the opportunity to purchase Walsh spirit wear in time for the holidays. 1st Place Spiritwear has a huge variety and will ship directly to you in about two weeks. They donate 10% of our sales back to Walsh School, so that is an added bonus. Check out their link here: https://1stplacespiritwear.com/schools/IL/Lockport/Walsh+Elementary+School

Please watch for information coming home about the D92 Giving Tree, and help someone in need this holiday season.

I hope you have time to reflect on your blessings, and celebrate in some way with your family this November.

Happy Thanksgiving ~ Teresa Martin

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Wrapping up our SEL focus: Self-Awareness

During September and October, our Social Emotional Learning (SEL) focus was self-awareness. Students learned about identifying their emotions, recognizing their own strengths and limitations, and improving their self-confidence through a growth mindset. A culminating activity took place in Music, where students created their piece of the Walsh rainbow by completing their "I AM" circle. Students chose one of several characteristics that represent themselves, such as I am creative, I am strong, I am kind, etc. All the circles were then put together to create the rainbow you see in our lobby.
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Important Dates in November

Mark Your Calendars

4 - Picture Re-Takes

5 - 1st Trimester Ends (Walsh, Reed, Ludwig)

5 - Spirit Day - Camo Day

7 - Daylight Savings Time Ends (Fall Back 1 Hour)

11 - Veterans' Day - Regular Class Schedules

12 - Report Cards Go Home

16 - Board of Education Meeting 7:00 pm

19 - Spirit Day - 80's Day

22-23 - Parent Teacher Conferences - No School

24-26 - Thanksgiving Holiday - No School

Remember to call the office by 9:00 a.m. if your child will be

absent or tardy.

Please be prompt for pick-up at 3:25 p.m. (2:45 p.m. on Wednesdays)

Office hours are 8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. ~ 815-838-7858 www.d92.org

Please note: AM Early Childhood Hours are 9:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. (11:00 Wednesday)

PM Early Childhood Hours are 12:45 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. (2:45 on Wednesday)

From Firetrucks to Daylight Savings Time ~ Safety First!

In the last few months, we have reviewed and learned many things to keep us safe and healthy. Your child may have come home with stories about meeting some of our first responders, such as the Lockport firefighters. They conducted a fire drill and our students did amazing. Last month, during our Red Ribbon Week, our focus was staying healthy. Check out our pictures at the end of the newsletter...everyone was showing their school spirit!

As we 'fall back' one hour this month, our attention turns a little stronger on the safety of our students outside. Please take care when moving in our parking lots, at our bus stops, and at the street crossings by the school. Remember that the speed limit in the school zone is 20mph, and the use of cell phones is prohibited. The neighborhood speed limit is 25mph and it would not surprise us if the police department watches a little closer as the season gets a bit darker in order to keep our children safe.

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A word about the Child Lures Program...

A word about the Child Lures Program…presented by our Social Worker, Dr. Duffy-Hook

Have you heard about ERIN’S LAW? On January 24, 2012, Erin’s Law was passed in Illinois, mandating age-appropriate sexual abuse and assault awareness and prevention education in grades pre-K through 12th grade. At Walsh School, we use the Child Lures Prevention Program which was designed by Kenneth Wooden to teach various ways to keep children as safe as possible from predators. This is a highly acclaimed, statewide, and research-based program. District 92 has been providing this program to our Walsh students even prior to the state mandate. It will be taught to our kindergarteners, and our first graders will get a refresher class from last year. At Walsh, only the introductory lessons are taught. Dr. Jackie Duffy-Hook, our school social worker, will be facilitating the Child Lures Prevention Program in every class. A parent orientation will be offered in some format this year. More details will follow. If you are a new family to Walsh, you will be receiving a parent guide with your Parent-Teacher Conference materials.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

At the end of this month, we will be conducting our Parent/Teacher Conferences; you have the choice to be in person or virtual for your conference this year. You will only be able to set a conference time through your PowerSchool Parent Portal, so please set up your account if you haven't already. You will need to contact the school office to obtain your security codes if you have misplaced them. If you already have your Parent Portal all set up, you are ready to go! Just wait for the window to open, log in, and set a time to meet with your teacher. At the end of making your appointment, you will have the option to make it an in-person conference or a zoom meeting.

If you need help setting up your account or making your appointment, please give us a call. Before your conference, write down any questions that you may want to cover with your teacher and present those during your conference. Please keep in mind we are on a tight schedule, and would like to have every parent meet with the teacher. We also ask you to be cautious in bringing your child with you to conference, as we will be discussing your child's strengths and areas for growth, and are sensitive to having these conversations in front of the child. Please call the office if you have any questions.

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Virtual Book Fair at Walsh School!

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Walsh School will be holding a virtual book fair from Nov. 8th to Nov. 21st. The proceeds from this book fair will go directly towards Walsh school. This is a great opportunity to raise money for our school while providing great books for children and checking off some of those people on your shopping list. Items will ship directly to your home.

Remember the window opens on November 8th. The link for our Book Fair is:


There is also a link on the Walsh Media Center Home page :-)

P.E. News by Mr. Wallace

Wow, we were so lucky to have some really nice weather in October! I am glad we were able to get outside and enjoy it. I would love to continue to go outside whenever possible. Please remember to send your students with coats and hats and warm clothes, we greatly appreciate it! Hopefully November will also be nice and allow us to continue to work on fitness and health. I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving with their families.

Kindergarten News

We have been very busy in kindergarten. We have been doing a variety of math activities. The children have been very engaged while learning the following math skills:

· compose and decompose numbers to 5 and 10

· subitize numbers to 10

· count by 1’s and 10’s to 100- keep practicing to become a member of the 100 Club.

· identify missing numbers in a sequence

We have been reading some great books. After we read a story, we practice retelling the story. (What happened in the beginning, middle, and end of the story?) We will answer questions about the story and discuss the meaning of the following vocabulary words: author, illustrator, illustrations, character, setting, fiction, and non-fiction.

We are also learning how to write. We are learning how to write simple sentences. We have been learning the following punctuation marks: . , ? ! We are starting sentences with a capital letter, leaving spaces between words, and ending with a punctuation mark. We have also been learning how to use inventive spelling. Students are using what they know about letters and sounds to spell words. For example, students might write snez to represent the word sneeze.

Parent-Teacher Conferences will be held in November. More information will be sent out to you from the district. We will be discussing your child's progress at that time.

Just a reminder, please have your child practice zipping/buttoning his/her coats and tying shoes. Now that we are using our coats more often to go outside for gym or recess, it is taking longer to get ready.

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First Grade News

It is already the month of November, and we are well on our way with the first grade curriculum. Our first graders are really working hard! November is a month to be thankful, and we are so thankful for your support at home!

In our Schoolwide Reading Nonfiction Unit of study, we continue to learn the elements of nonfiction and how nonfiction is different from other genres. We will also explore various types of nonfiction texts. Students will learn all about the text features of nonfiction books. By reading and studying three types of nonfiction (reference, literary and biography), students will develop an understanding of various forms, features, and purposes of nonfiction. In addition, the first graders will continue to develop their own narrative and opinion writing pieces.

In math, we will continue with Unit 3~Adding, Subtracting, Counting and Comparing. Students are encouraged to master math facts and fact strategies for single-digit addition and subtraction facts. We will use various strategies to help students recognize number combinations, find the sum of two numbers, and compare two numbers to find the difference between them. We will also focus on developing place value, solve addition combinations to 20 and develop an understanding of the difference model of subtraction.

Don't forget to sign up for conferences on November 22nd and 23rd. We look forward to discussing your child's progress in school!

Have a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving with your family and friends!

Early Childhood and Community Preschool News

The Early Childhood and Community Preschool students enjoyed a fabulous October and are excited about our new month. In November, we will work on the letters G, H and I, and new Bridges math concepts, including counting to 10 and beyond, as well as extending patterns. We will make several Thanksgiving projects and celebrate all those things for which we are thankful. As parent-teacher conferences approach, we are looking forward to sharing all the progress our students are making. Thank you for your continued support at home!

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Music News by Mrs. Joanne Moan

What a month of music-making in the Walsh music room!

Early Childhood: The preschool students have been introduced to our movement scarves, and they love them! We also gathered nuts and acorns for the squirrels in a fun game. The students learned a chant about the worm in the apple, and then became the worm in the song! It was fun to wiggle through the apple. Way up high in the apple tree, I saw two eyes looking at me. I reached for an apple, it started to squirm. Oops, I found a wiggly worm! The students enjoyed moving in bubbles as a duck, turtle and a butterfly. The students practiced the Hokey Pokey and a freeze dance. We will be learning a song called “Spider on the Floor” and using our high and low voices with voice maps.

Kindergarten: We are finishing up our study of the farm and farm animals in music. We had to go “Hunt for the Cows” even when we were so hot and tired. Ask your Kindergartener to demonstrate the dramatic movement for you. We danced a great “Milk Bucket Boogie” and learned how to slide down the alley. The students met several horses this month, including “My Pony, Macaroni”. We listened for the change from high to low in music, and were able to identify the sound AND change our movements to match the music. We have started some pumpkin songs, like “Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater” and “Pass the Pumpkin”. The students will be practicing some songs about Fall and leaves during November.

1st Grade: The first graders are busy learning about rhythm! We have been practicing quarter notes, eighth notes and rests, using the song “The Muffin Man”. The students enjoyed using the music room puppets, and helping them sing to each other. We practiced moving as a spider, and playing and singing several spider songs, including: “Itsy Bitsy Spider” and “Legs and All”. We also played the song, “Big Black Cats” with our wood blocks and glockenspiel. The students will begin learning about Veterans Day, and the service that Veterans have performed for our country. We will learn a wonderful patriotic song, “This Land is Your Land”.

Art News by Mrs. Deckinga

In November, the kindergarten students will begin a mixed-media owl project. The students are learning about the elements of art, and in particular, the element of line. We'll be drawing owls using different types of line, then using markers, crayons, and watercolor to complete them. We'll also be learning a few interesting facts about owls.

The first grade students are observing National Native American Heritage Month by creating a Navajo inspired sandpainting. We'll be learning about different types of Native American art, but will be focusing on the ancient art of Navajo sandpainting. For our paintings, we'll be using sandpaper and a variety of colored sands.


How to Inspire Children to Read in a Digital Age

At the heart of all learning is solid literacy – but what if your child doesn’t like to read or doesn’t feel he/she is good at reading?

Some people speculate that the digital world we now find ourselves living in, limits the opportunities for children to read as they spend so much time playing games or chatting to friends online. However, technology can lend itself to literacy development if we use it in the right way.

When it comes to reluctant readers, using digital books can make all the difference. They can pique the interest of children who might see books as boring.

Children don’t have to worry about any overwhelmingly wordy double page spreads, either. With digital books, there are far fewer words to worry about in the immediate future, and the text size can easily be zoomed up. This helps when a child’s eyes aren’t focusing and stops them from scanning the page looking for unknown words that might be long and potentially difficult to decode.

Using technology can really help put the focus on enjoyment, which is key to breaking a cycle of negativity about reading.

It’s crucial that we don’t lose sight of the fact that literacy is a forever skill. Reading for pleasure builds empathy, broadens minds and can be hugely inspiring at all ages – it is the gift that keeps on giving.

Lancaster, A. (2018, March 29). How to Inspire Children to Read in a Digital Age, Retrieved from https://academytoday.co.uk.

Check out the digital books available at Walsh:

Tumblebooks Book Flix

User Name: willcounty User Name: willcounty

Password: books Password: books

Making Math Count with Mrs. Romeo, Math Specialist

I know it may be too early to say this, but holiday shopping is coming and I wanted to share the positives of board games. Even simple games help young players identify colors, count spaces, and develop hand-eye coordination. They can help boost their language skills by expanding vocabulary and memory of who did what and where. They can help with attention span and teamwork. Board games help children practice how to stay calm even when they don’t win. Best of all, it is a great way to unplug and spend time as a family. Below I have pictured some suggestions.
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Walsh School showed their spirit during Red Ribbon Week.................. Take a look!

Students filled the lobby tables with canned goods they donated in the name of keeping other kids and families healthy. Look what an amazing group of generous students we have! The food will be donated to the Lockport Fish Pantry next week. They filled 16 boxes all the way to the top. WOW!

Below you will find some sweet memories from the fun-filled week.

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