Buzzin' in the Hive

Graden Parent and Family Newsletter, December 2022

Dear Graden Families,

Thursday, December 22nd marks the end of first semester. I have truly loved seeing all of our students highly engaged in learning and cannot wait to see how much they grow throughout the remainder of the 2022-23 school year.

December is a busy, exciting, and fast month! Our winter NWEA window opened on Wednesday, November 30th and runs until Friday, December 16th. Look for communication from your classroom teacher for when they will be taking the NWEA assessment.

Students will be out of school Friday, December 23rd - Monday, January 2nd for winter break. I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating the end of the year with your family!

Upcoming Dates:

Friday, December 2nd: Christmas on the River - Graden Choir Sings @ 7:00 pm

Tuesday, December 6th: PTA meeting @ 5:30 pm - Dr. Kimbrel will visit

Tuesday, December 6th: 5th Grade Musical @ 6:30 pm

Wednesday, December 7th: 2:00 pm - Early Release

Wednesday, December 7th: Culvers Night from 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Saturday, December 10th: 9:00 am - 11:00 am - Graden Merry Mart @ Graden

Thursday, December 15th: Mathletics Competition @ 4:45 pm

Friday, December 23rd - Monday, January 2nd: NO SCHOOL - Winter Break

I look forward to finishing the semester strong!

-Dr. Easley

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We will have outdoor recess as often as we can. Please send students to school prepared to be outside for recess with a coat, hat and gloves.

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Early release days will be on Wednesdays for the 2022-23 school year. Dismissal on early release days begins at 2:00 pm.

Every early release day will be Interest Group Day at Graden. All students will engage in a cultural arts assembly and students will join interest groups to participate in an activity of high interest to them. I am thrilled to share that ALL assemblies and interest groups will be in-person this year. Please have your student wear their "GRIT" school shirt.

Below you will find the early release schedule and the assembly themes:

2022-23 Early Release Days:

Wednesday, December 7th - Sonnet Man

Wednesday, January 4th

Wednesday, February 1st

Wednesday, March 1st

Wednesday, April 5th

Wednesday, May 3rd

Please communicate with your classroom teacher and the office if you have alternate transportation on early release days.

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At Graden, our core values are continuous growth, equity & inclusion, collaboration, leadership, authentic relationships, and learning that is student driven. We are always looking for opportunities to implement these into our students’ day. One way we do that is through Interest Groups.

On Early Release Days, students will participate in a cultural arts assembly and will also have the opportunity to join a group of K-2 or 3-5 students (depending on their age range) in a self-selected activity. Students will be surveyed at the beginning of the year, and will be placed in a group based on their top 3 choices. A staff member will lead these groups, giving students an opportunity to meet new teachers as well as other students! Some of the activities include, but are not limited to: Art, Breakout Room, Bugs, Crafts, Cooking, Fitness/Yoga/Aerobics, Games, Legos, Martial Arts, Music, Sign Language, STEM, Team Sports, and Technology. These days are always exciting for our Hornets.

Interest Group Schedule:

Wednesday, December 7th

Wednesday, February 1st

Wednesday, March 1st

Wednesday, April 5th


Yearbooks are now for sale through the Inter-State website. If you would like to purchase a yearbook, please use the link below. Yearbook sales end on January 31st.


Invitations for individual birthday parties may be distributed at school IF they are passed out to the whole class. We will not hand out invitations to individual students as this does not align with our building expectations.

We have a Graden Buzz Book with student contact information that you can receive if you sign up for PTA. Sign up for PTA online today. Once you sign up, a Buzz Book will be provided to you.


This semester has flown by and I have seen so much social, emotional, academic, and behavioral growth across all grade levels! I am looking forward to seeing what the remainder of the year brings. ❤ In the counseling classroom, I will be wrapping up my small groups with the help of Mrs. Witherby (Recovery Room Interventionist) and Mrs. Dawson (School Social Worker). We will be looking ahead at how we can continue to provide this support for a new batch of students come Spring! Visit the Graden Counseling Website for monthly counseling newsletters, community resources, and parent referral forms, as well as several other fun resources to cultivate social and emotional development. I have also attached a direct link to the December Counseling Newsletter below. As always, I am available to chat via email, phone, or in person (YAY!) You can reach me by email at or via phone at 816-359-5647. Stay warm and healthy, Hornet families!

*** If you are someone who needs assistance with Winter clothing, please do not hesitate to reach out to me or Mrs. Dawson for support! We have received some generous donations of coats and winter accessories and would love to provide our Hornets with some gear to keep them bundled up and warm! ***


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We are so excited for our 2nd annual Merry Mart! If you are interested in being a vendor or know of someone who sells a “must have” item for the holiday season, please feel free to share the link. Mark your calendar for this event and be watching for more information in the coming weeks!


Thank you so much for all of your donations for our 2022-23 Harvester's Food Drive. We received so many items that we filled all of the bins and had to start piles on the ground in our front office. Our Student Leadership Team had a wonderful time counting the items each day.

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The Park Hill clothing center recently added evening dates to the volunteer schedule in an attempt to get more volunteers (hanging clothes, putting away shoes, etc). Anyone is welcome to come (kids, teams, groups, clubs, etc). The link is here:

If you have any team/group special request dates, contact Karen at 603-557-0701 or

We also really need people to volunteer during the shopping times (1st and 3rd Tuesdays of every month). During these hours we cannot have student helpers due to confidentiality. Those hours are listed here:

Also, you don't need to commit to an entire timeslot. Just work what you can. Students in the Park Hill School district can also take clothes home. If you have anything to donate, we accept clothing sizes 4T-Adult.

Our shopping hours are listed here

The address is 8009 N Atkins. It is a house with a blue bin in front next to the Gerner Family Early Education Center’s playground. Type in “Gerner” to GPS to ensure it takes you to the correct address.

Thank you for helping us to help the kids!

The Park Hill Clothing Center Team

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WOW! November was a fantastic month celebrating our Graden teachers and staff with an Olive Garden dinner before conferences and a Thanksgiving Breakfast hosted by Parkville Coffee and locally donated pastries! While the coffee and food were amazing, perhaps what was most special was the personalized notes each one of your kids wrote to our teachers and staff, telling them how THANKFUL they were for all they do at Graden. We sure do have awesome students and families here at Graden!

Thank you for continuing to support the PTA! If you want to get involved at any level, we welcome you! Here are some of our immediate needs!

· Dec. 7 – Culver's Night! Volunteers Needed - Sign up here!

· Dec.1-7 – Christmas Treats for Teachers! Donate here!

Important Dates:

· Dec. 6– PTA Meeting at 5:30 p.m. in the Graden library! *Dr. Kimbrel will be joining! Childcare provided! 5th Grade Musical following at 6:30 p.m.

· Dec. 7 – Culver's Night! Volunteers Needed - Sign up here!

· Dec. 14– "Pop-up" snack cart for Graden staff! Christmas Style! - Donate here!

· Dec. 22 – Class Winter Parties!

Connect with us on Facebook to see our upcoming events and learn how you can get involved with PTA.

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Graden PTA Board Members:

Hayley Cooper, President

Emily Miller, Vice President

Lindsay Ramon, Secretary

Maggie Wright, Treasurer

Jessica Freels, Parliamentarian

2022-23 PTA Meeting Dates

Tuesday, December 6th, 2022- Dr. Kimbrel, Superintendent visit 5:30 pm

Tuesday, January 10th, 2023

Tuesday, February 7th, 2023

Tuesday, March 7th, 2023

Tuesday, April 4th, 2023

Tuesday, May 2nd, 2023

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The Park Hill Star recognition program was started in 2015 to celebrate support staff and teachers whose work is especially noteworthy.

The following is an overview of the Park Hill Star Program:

Our employees are the reason we are so successful here in the Park Hill School District, and we would like to recognize them for all they do for our students. That is why we present the Park Hill Star award once a month to a pre-K or elementary teacher, a secondary teacher and a support employee.


School Office (816) 359-4340

School Fax (816) 359-4349

Attendance Line (816) 359-4341

First Student Bus Company (816) 359-4560

Adventure Club (816) 359-5015

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