Crow Island Parent Newsletter

January 23, 2023

Dear Crow Island Families,

We are excited to work with Chicago's Filament Theater again! This week, all students will participate in a workshop based on Filament's newest play, THINK FAST, JORDAN CHASE! a fantastic, magical, choose-your-own-adventure play about old friends, new kids, and staying true to yourself. The Filament theater staff are "taking over" our Related Arts schedule so this work for all students in occurring during their Related Arts schedule. This is an example of our staff thinking outside the box to create experiences for students. Many thanks to Lillian Johnston for working out this partnership and bringing Filament back for all students to experience. You can learn more about Filament and the experience here.

In addition, I want to encourage families to check out the Winnetka Public Schools Foundation's Annual Carlson event. The Foundation does so much to support our schools and if you can attend the even it is always a good way to connect to the good work and support the Foundation provides Crow Island. Parents can RSVP below.

Stay well,


  • Wednesday, January 25th: 3rd Grade Pioneer Room Open house 9-10am & 7-8pm
  • Thursday, February 9th: No School Conferences
  • Friday, February 10th: No School Conferences
  • Monday, February 20th: Non-Attendance day for students

Math Elementary Core Values ~ Perseverance

In an elementary Winnetka classroom, mistakes are embraced as an essential and expected part of the learning process. Brain research shows that children learn at the highest level when they come to an understanding of their own mistakes. Therefore, mistakes are always seen as an opportunity. This shift in thinking helps cultivate curiosity and reflection, as well as, reduce math anxiety. Perseverance, persistent effort to make sense of a problem, is another value in our classrooms and a key to mathematical achievement. Flexibility, curiosity, and a growth mindset are all components of perseverance we strive to model and cultivate in our students. This goal of our instruction shapes our responses to student work, thinking, and attitudes. Students are often asked to reflect on their work or a classmate’s work, to see if they can understand a different strategy or revise their thinking. A student’s ability to persevere is a key factor for their mathematical growth and achievement in the long run. We strive to cultivate this mindset early on in their journey.

Phones/Smart Watches Reminders:

This is a reminder about smart phones and watches at school. While they are permitted to ensure students can safely walk or bike home after school, we also want to make sure we are adhering to the following guidelines:

  • Phones are to be kept on silent or off and put in student lockers during the day. They can come out of bags after dismissal as students leave school.

  • Watches can be worn for the purpose of telling time but should be put into airplane mode and the wifi access turned off while they are in school.

  • Students are not to call, text, or message their family members during the school day. If students need to reach a member of their family, they can use one of the phones in the main office.

If students have a hard time following these procedures the following will happen:

  • Students will be prompted to put the device away in their locker.

  • If it happens a second time, the student will be prompted to hand over the device to the staff member who will turn it into the main office. Parents will be called to come pick-up the device.

Composting in District 36

Composting is in full swing at Greeley, Hubbard Woods and Washburne Schools. A plan is underway to introduce composting at Crow Island and The Skokie School.

Please note that items that are not on the lists below are not eligible for composting. This includes dog waste, scrap wood, and yard waste. While leaves and other organics are compostable, this service is not intended to take the place of the current Winnetka community systems and home composting solutions. If you notice composting bins are full, the District is unable to accept the materials and kindly requests that you do not place items outside of the bins for health and safety reasons. We also ask that residents abide by the hours designated for our schools. Further information on hours and bin locations is available on the Village website.

Food Products:

• Baked goods

• Bones

• Breads

• Candy

• Cereal

• Coffee grounds

• Dairy products

• Egg shells

• Fish/seafood

• Flower/plant cuttings

• Fried food

• Fruits

• Grains and grain products

• Meats

• Vegetables

• Spices/herbs

• Sugars/syrups

Paper Products:

• Blue painters tape (it’s paper!)

• Cardboard (pizza boxes!)

• Coffee filters

• Sugar/salt/pepper packets

• Egg cartons (paper only)

• Microwave popcorn bags

• Napkins

• Newspaper

• Paper food packaging

• Paper towels and wrap

• Tea/tea bags (no staples)

• Untreated wood products/sawdust


  • READ: Alliance’s Fall/Winter Newsletter

  • REGISTER: Let’s Play! Let’s Play! Cardboard Design Experience on Saturday, January 28, 10:00am-12:00pm, Joseph Sears School, 542 Abbotsford Rd, Kenilworth, IL 60043

Join The Alliance for Early Childhood and partners Joseph Sears School, Kenilworth District 38 and Winnetka-Northfield Public Library to think outside of the box and get creative at our Cardboard Design Experience. Children will bring their own design ideas and we will provide the cardboard and tools for their creations to come to life. Intended Age Audience: All ages are welcome.

  • REGISTER: Virtual Parent Series: Using Connection, Compassion, and Co-Regulation to Address Challenging Behavior in Young Children with Cari Ebert, February 9, 7-8:30pm

Dealing with a child’s challenging behavior is one of the toughest parts of parenting. Traditional discipline techniques revolve around the use of punishments and rewards, which may be effective in the short term, but are often ineffective in the long run. Join Cari Ebert as she explores the power of using a relationship-based discipline approach based on connection, compassion, and co- regulation to support young children during times of distress. Facilitated by Cari Ebert, Pediatric Speech Pathologist, MS, CCC-SLP. More details here.

  • REGISTER: Let’s Play! Let’s Play! Winter Woods Exploration Saturday, February 11, 10:00am-12:00pm, Crow Island Woods, 1140 Willow Rd, Winnetka

Bundle-up and head outside to join The Alliance for Early Childhood and Community Partner BackYard Nature Center to engage in imaginative, child-directed, outdoor free-play in the woods. All ages are welcome.

  • REGISTER: Virtual Parent Series: Attachment and Your Young Child’s Mental Health: How You Can Make a Difference with Kate Blaker and Sarah Eastburg in Conversation with Carly Andrews, February 23, 7pm

From the moment children are born they seek a secure attachment with caregivers, and this attachment becomes the secure base for their future development. Renowned psychiatrist Dr. Bessel Van Der Kolk writes that “children whose parents are reliable sources of comfort and strength have a lifetime advantage - a kind of buffer against the worst that fate can hand them.” Join Kate Blaker and Sarah Eastburg in conversation with Carly Andrews as they discuss the role of attachment between parent and child and explore what being "securely attached" means, how parents can support secure attachments with their children, and the effects of secure attachment on the family’s mental wellness. Facilitated by Kate Blaker, M.A.T, NBCC, LPC, and Sarah Eastburg, LSW. More details here.

Winnetka Public Schools Foundation's Annual Carlson Event on January 26

YOU ARE INVITED to an evening you won't want to miss...

Winnetka Public Schools Foundation's Annual Carlson Event

Thursday, January 26, 2023

7pm - 9pm

Winnetka Community House, Garden Room

The annual Carlson Event is a lively, interactive evening that provides an opportunity for D36 parents and community members to see the Foundation grants in action.

The Foundation is excited to host a panel of D36 educators who will speak about significant grants which are funding professional development on two hot topics for all K-8 teachers. K-4 teachers received training from the Reading League on the “Science of Reading”, and 5-8 teachers received training from the Buck Institute on “Project Based Learning”. Attendees will learn about these important training investments and their current impact on students in the classroom.

Join us and bring your friends for conversation, a glass of wine, and delicious hors d'oeuvres! All are welcome for this free community event.

Please RSVP to

For more information about the Foundation, go to

This complimentary event is sponsored by a generous gift left to the Foundation in 2002 by Charlotte Carlson, a long-time educator in the Winnetka Public Schools.

Acceleration in Winnetka 36

January 25, 2023 at 10:00 a.m.

The Skokie School Community Room

Director of Innovation, Teaching, and Learning Dr. Becky Mathison will host this information session about the acceleration policy. The content will include a review of the purpose of the acceleration policy and a preview of updated procedures this year. Participants will have the opportunity to provide feedback on specific components including the initial request form.


January 25, 2023

10:00-11:00 AM

RSVP here.

Online Registration Open for Incoming Kindergarteners & New Students for the 2023-2024 School Year

Registration for incoming kindergarteners and students new to The Winnetka Public Schools in 2023-2024 is now open on the District website and via Children who will be five-years-old on or before September 1, 2023, are eligible to enroll.

The new student registration process is completed in three steps:

  1. Complete new student pre-registration forms online beginning November 16, 2022.

  2. Provide the original or certified copy of your child(ren)'s birth certificate and a parent photo ID. The certified copy can be submitted in person at the District Office. If you have the original birth certificate, you may bring it to the District Office to be photocopied. The District Office is at 1235 Oak St., Winnetka.

  3. Provide proof of residency and paper registration forms. For your convenience, all required residency documents may be uploaded during online registration. Click here to view the list of documents that will meet these requirements as well as the other forms required for registration (Registration Forms & Information).

Children will not be considered enrolled until both the online and paper portion of registration has been completed and residency documentation is verified. If you have any questions, please contact the District Office at 847-446-9400.

Stay & Play Registration

Kindergarten students who are not currently enrolled in Stay & Play will have the opportunity to register for the 2nd half of the year after 8:00 am January 9th through this link. Please note that the registration period ends January 31, 2023 and will remain closed for the remainder of the year. The rates are prorated below. If you attempt to register before the 9th, you will receive an Item Unavailable message. After purchasing Kindergarten Stay & Play registration, your child will be able to begin their attendance in the program the following Monday so the schools can plan accordingly.

Parent Education Sessions from District Partner Family Action Network (FAN):

For upcoming events, access FAN’s website here. These noteworthy events are coming up this this week and next:

Jan. 24, 2023 from 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm:

The Good Life: Lessons from the World’s Longest Scientific Study of Happiness


Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, director of the Center for Psychodynamic Therapy and Research at Massachusetts General Hospital, co-director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, and co-founder of the Lifespan Research Foundation


William Henry Bloomberg Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School and Professor of Management Practice at the Harvard Business School


Note: Event start time is Central Time (CT).


Jan. 26, 2023 from 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm:

Awe: The New Science of Everyday Wonder and How It Can Transform Your Life


Professor of Psychology, University of California at Berkeley, Faculty Director of the Greater Good Science Center, and bestselling author


Author of the #1 New York Times bestselling books Quiet and Bittersweet


Jan. 31, 2023 from 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm:

A Place Called Home: A Memoir of Deprivation and Hope


Head of Community Engagement (West) for Amazon and Author


Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services


Adventures in Learning Summer 2023

The Winnetka Public Schools will offer its Adventures in Learning summer program from June 14th to July 19, 2023. There will be no classes on June 19th or July 4th. Our General Program is designed for students entering 2nd grade through 8th grade and will be held at Washburne School. Our Primary Program provides activities for children Pre-K (4 years old by June 1st, 2023) and K-1st grade (5 years old by September 1st, 2022) and will be held at Crow Island. Classes will be as varied as wilderness skills, archery, tennis, science, cooking, and many types of crafts​...along with the annual favorite, Animal Care. Registration will go live in March.

Follow us on Social Media!

Please follow the District via the following social media platforms in order to see day-to-day happenings and more.

Facebook and Twitter: @Winnetka36

Instagram: @WinnetkaPublicSchools