South Elementary Family Newsletter
Volume #6 February, 2021
Monthly Message from the Principal
Time is sure flying by and does not seem to be slowed down by the cold, Covid, or quarantines! We are half way there (I am showing my age when I say that I picture Bon Jovi singing that at one of the concerts of my younger days. Click here to sing along.) The half way mark brings Middle of the Year (MOY) assessments for all students. This will give us some great data to compare with Beginning of the Year (BOY) results and also the ability to analyze student growth, strengths, and weaknesses. One good thing about the Hybrid model is the smaller class sizes and the individualized instruction (in both 1-1 and small groups) that is able to take place both in person and virtually.
With that being said, I know it is hard for parents when students are learning at home. I've had a number of great, in-depth conversations with parents who are frustrated with their child's behavior because they are refusing to do work or participate online. This is not normally how their child behaves and they don't know why and are feeling embarrassed. Their child has the ability to do what is being asked, but they are saying they won't or acting out. Who knows why this is happening? Maybe it's for attention, fake control, avoidance of work, boredom, etc. but don't be embarrassed!
I'm a parent, too, and don't judge. I have two older children who I love and adore. My daughter is 23 and lives in Nashville and my son is 18 and lives at home with us. I've been through the terrible twos, crazy teens, and it still can be difficult. As a working military wife whose husband was often deployed, I can tell you that I struggled and so did my kids. Life can get messy and we sometimes lose control and that's ok. But, we can't do it alone! In my opinion, parenting is one of the hardest jobs in the world, and that is without Covid.
There is no right way or magic set of directions. Children have so many influences these days, and when you add in all things Covid related that impact the normal routine, you may get new behaviors. Reach out to your child's teacher or our school adjustment counselor or myself. We can help. I've included a recommended book list for Parenting in the Parent Resources section below; my favorite is the one from Brene Brown. I also want to share a link from one of my favorite websites called Empowering Parents. The link for the website is HERE. There are multiple articles and resources on this that you can access for free. One article that I think you may find helpful while raising any child and especially while everyone is often home together is called "14 Proven Responses to the Most Frustrating BackTalk", including eye rolls and "whatever". That is available HERE. Hopefully, these resources will provide some support to you and your family, like they did for me and mine.
On a last fun note, if there is snow on the ground, please send your child to school with snow pants and snow boots and other appropriate cold weather gear so that they can play in the snow during recess. Wishing you all happy hearts, lots of chocolate, and good health during this frosty month of February!
Friday, February 12th-Virtual Paint Night (see PTO section for more info)
Monday, February 14th-19th-NO SCHOOL-Winter Vacation
Tuesday, February 23rd-PTO Meeting @ 6PM. Click HERE for the Zoom link.
Spirit Week! Week of 2/22/21-Sports Theme!
Cohort A- Tuesday, February, 2/23
Cohort B- Friday, February, 2/26
Please click on this link if you would like to be updated through text with information from me.
A Little Peace of South.....Monthly Comfort
Hello South Families.......Ms H checking in,
I will be sharing some monthly updates on how our School Community is doing and sharing thoughts, Resources and Ideas. I hope you find this helpful. The link below is our School Counselor Collaborative Website with amazing resources. You can click Caring Corner and get resources, tips, and support. The top right corner of the website has a link to a form to request help from the counselor for each Student, as well as, a link to a form to request contact from the counselor for the Parents. We are here to help you all and will get back to you within a couple of days. If it is an emergency please contact the front office at 508-324-3180.
You can also reach me at South anytime via email at email@example.com
As we continue with weekly transitions and changes in school this year, remember we are ALL in this together and do not hesitate to reach out. We are better together. These are incredibly stressful times for all of us and we are here for you as well as your children.
Technology and Virtual Learning
From Ms. Bertrand, Our School Nurse
UPDATED FLU VACCINE INFORMATION
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health is removing the requirement for flu vaccination for attendance in childcare/preschool, primary, secondary and postsecondary education. Preliminary data show that this has been a mild flu season to date, presumably as people have received their seasonal flu vaccine and have been adhering to mask-wearing and social distancing due to COVID-19. Given the intensive Commonwealth-wide efforts regarding COVID-19 vaccination, DPH wants to alleviate the burden to obtain flu vaccination and focus on continuing our COVID -19 vaccination efforts.
PLEASE KEEP YOUR CHILD HOME IF THEY HAVE ANY OF THE FOLLOWING COVID-19 SYMPTOMS
ParentsGuardians should be screening their children for the following symptoms prior to coming to school. If your child has any of the following symptoms, PLEASE do not send your child to school. If you feel that your child needs medication in the morning, this is an indication that your child needs to remain home from school and please communicate this with us. Thank you for your cooperation in this very important matter.
Fever (100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher), chills, or
Cough (not due to other known cause, such as chronic cough)
Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
New loss of taste or smell
Headache, when in combination with other symptoms
Muscle Aches or body aches
Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
Fatigue, when in combination of other symptoms
Nasal Congestion or runny nose (not due to other known causes, such as allergies) when in combination with other symptoms
If your child is ill, please keep them home and email our school nurse, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Spread the Love Community Event - The three Somerset Elementary Schools want us all to come together to share a little more love. Look for the Heart Hunters flyer coming soon and stay tuned for more district wide PTO events because WE ARE BETTER TOGETHER! Click HERE for the flyer.
- Virtual Paint Night - Friday, February 12 at 6:30 p.m. In lieu of our Sweetheart Dance we are hosting a virtual paint night open to all Somerset Elementary students and their families. Zoom Link and list of supplies will be sent prior to the event. We are asking for an optional donation of $10 per family. Click HERE for the flyer.
- School Store - We are opening up the school store in February. Link will be shared very soon. Get all your cricket gear!
- Spirit Day - Week of February 21 is "Sports Theme" Spirit Week.
- Box Tops - Make sure to sign up at https://www.boxtops4education.com/ and download the app so we can earn money for our school. ***Due to current guidelines we are no longer collecting the physical box tops.***
- Energy Saving Fundraiser - National Grid is offering a way for us to save energy and help our school! Check out this link for more info. Then visit https://techniartordersite.com/nationalgrid. During checkout enter "South Elementary School" and your students name. Free shipping directly to your home.
- PTO Meeting - Tuesday, February 23 at 6pm. We have a lot of things happening and would love to see our South families and staff join us.
South Elementary PTO is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Monthly South PTO Meeting
Time: Feb 23, 2021 06:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Feb 23, 2021 06:00 PM
Mar 16, 2021 06:00 PM
Apr 20, 2021 06:00 PM
May 18, 2021 06:00 PM
Please download and import the following iCalendar (.ics) files to your calendar system.
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 829 0733 0145
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Meeting ID: 829 0733 0145
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kdUmqGVT78
Click HERE for a list of the 5 Best Parenting Books
Click HERE for Great Books to Read with Your Kids in February
Click HERE for a 100's Chart to help count to 100, add, subtract, and notice number patterns.
Click HERE for an Alphabet Linking Chart to help your child match sounds and letters when writing/reading.
Click HERE for Multiplication Charts to practice math facts or use for a reference.
February Lunch Menu: please click or try this link:
Or, try to copy and paste this link into a different tab:
School meals (breakfast and lunch) are free for all students (in-school and virtual) up to age 21 for the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year. ***Effective January 4th 2021, all remote meals will be distributed at Somerset Middle School (1141 Brayton Ave Somerset MA 02726) Meals will be served on the right side of building on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s from 10 am-12 pm. If you are picking up meals you can pick up several days' meals at one time. If you aren't able to come yourself you can have someone come in your place to pick up the meals.
**Meals will NOT be available on School breaks, Professional Development Days, Holidays, and snow days.
Please reach out to Jason Morency at email@example.com or 1-508-352-3172 with any questions regarding school lunches.
MA/COVID Travel Information: If you are planning on a family vacation or a visit out of the state, please review the Massachusetts Travel Order. https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-travel-order.
Somerset Public Schools Handbook: SPS Health and Safety Handbook includes important information on face masks/covering (no neck gators or masks with vents, unless a doctor's note is sent in), travel restrictions (links in Parent Resources for Massachusetts Travel information), and keeping students home if students or their close contacts have COVID symptoms.
Somerset Public Schools, Revised Calendar: please click HERE
Kindergarten rang in the new year by creating goals and resolutions on things we want to improve. As a school, we have been engaging in a variety of assessments to monitor the academic progression of our students and identify their strengths and needs. We are using this information to plan more individualized instruction and add in more small groups support on Wednesdays to target specific skills. This month, we continued to learn letter sounds and have been creating and reading CVC words. Students have been reading both human (real) words and alien (nonsense/fake) words to help develop their decoding skills. In math, we have strengthened our knowledge of the numbers 6-10 and learned how to break down the numbers into partners. We also are working on counting by 10’s and counting by 1’s to reach our end of the year goal of counting to 100! In science, we have begun a kit that introduced force and motion called "push, pull, and go". Students will engage in hands-on building activities to investigate and explore these concepts.
It is hard to believe that we have made it through half of the school year! The end of the semester was 1/26 and report cards will be available today!
January has already brought a lot of new and exciting learning in 2nd grade! In ELA, we used the book Disaster Alert! to begin our informational unit. We looked into the various text features found within a nonfiction text including table of contents, index, glossary, caption and heading to name just a few! We have begun choosing topics to write our own informational texts over the next few weeks. In math, we are working with numbers, exploring various strategies for adding and subtracting numbers including making a ten and using doubles facts. We have begun our physical science unit exploring the states of matter.
Greetings from the 4th Grade:
We have been working diligently this month in 4th grade! In ELA we are working on biographies, and analyzing cause and effect in expository texts. In math,we have completed dividing with 1-digit numbers, and are starting a new chapter on factors, multiples and patterns. Lastly, we are studying the Northeast region, and will be studying all of the regions of the United States next month.