Words from Walsh December, 2021

Staying connected with Walsh School

Greetings from Principal Martin

Dear Walsh Families:

Thank you to all our parents who made our parent-teacher conferences run so smoothly last month. Communication between parents and teachers is such an important part of your child’s education. Working together with your teacher, you are setting a strong foundation for your child’s educational journey. Please let us know if you have any concerns or suggestions regarding the parent -teacher conference process. A special shout out and thank you to the Oak Prairie National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) for providing child care at the conferences this year.

This month we will still be working hard, but we will have some opportunities for fun, too! Classroom parties will take place on Tuesday, December 21st at 1:15 pm, followed by a 2:50 dismissal. Our winter break starts on Wednesday, December 22nd.

I hope you enjoy the holidays with your family and I look forward to seeing you back at school on Thursday, January 6th! ~ Teresa Martin

Important Dates in December

Mark Your Calendars

10 - Spirit Day - Polar Express Day

~Dress as your favorite character, dress as an elf, or wear your pajamas!

14 - Board of Education Meeting 7 pm @ District Office

17 - Spirit Day - Holiday Wear

~Show your spirit with holiday clothes or holiday colors!

21 - Class Christmas Parties 1:15 pm - 2:15 pm

21 - Early Dismissal at 2:50 pm (Kindergarten and First Grade)

(EC and Preschool classes: AM dismissed at 11:00 am & PM dismissed at 2:45 pm)

22 - January 4 - Winter Break - No School

January 5 - Teacher Institute - No School

January 6 - Classes Resume

Drop off times: no earlier than 8:40 a.m.

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

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

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

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A Note from the Nurse

I hope you have fun baking those special treats this holiday season. Please remember to pack a healthy lunch for your child. As the weather starts to change, remember to dress your child appropriately with a coat, hat, and gloves. If your child is ill with any fever, coughing, or vomiting, they will be sent home and their return date will be determined. Please call the office with any specific questions. Happy Holidays!

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P.E. News by Mr. Wallace

With December's cold weather upon us, we must be prepared so please send your students dressed warmly. Also, please remember to send gym shoes when they wear boots to school so they can fully participate. We will continue to stay fit with as much exercise as we can get while playing many fun holiday games. With all the yummy sweets that are made around the holidays, we will definitely be talking more about healthy eating. Happy holidays to all and enjoy the time with your family.

Kindergarten News

Thank you to all the kindergarten families who attended our recent Parent/Teacher Conferences! We appreciate you meeting with us to discuss your child's progress and the goals for the year.

We have started our Schoolwide Fiction Unit, and we will learn about what fiction is and the various types of fiction (ex: traditional tales, fairy tales, and realistic fiction). We will work on retelling a story, focusing on what happened first, next, then and last. We will identify the characters, setting, problem, and solution of the texts we read and are read.

Our Fundations work will be focusing on capital letters, starting with A through P. We will be learning to print these letters with the correct formation while using the correct lines. We will be working on decoding words with a CVC (consonant vowel consonant) pattern like: cat, leg, pig, dot, and tub. Our new sight words will be said, all, of, are, as, and has. We will continue to practice our writing skills with the first letter of the sentence as a capital, spaces between the words, and using punctuation at the end of the sentence.

The Bridges Math skills we will be working on will include:

  • counting to 100 by 1's and 10's
  • counting to 100 by 1's and 10's from any given starting number
  • adding, subtracting and measuring with a focus on using a number line
  • counting, adding and subtracting objects
  • comparing and measuring length

All of us in kindergarten, wish all of you, Happy Holidays!

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First Grade News

The first grade students are working so hard before the holidays!


We will complete our Schoolwide Non-Fiction Unit of Study. In our Non-Fiction Unit, we have learned the elements of non-fiction and how non-fiction is different from other genres. We have explored the various types of non-fiction texts. Students have been introduced to many nonfiction reference books and literary nonfiction books. You might want to take a look at the books you have in your home and determine with your child if they are nonfiction reference books or literary nonfiction books.

We will continue to work on reading with accuracy and fluency. Please continue to have your child read and review comprehension of text with you during baggie book time at home. The only way to increase fluency is through practice.


We will be working on writing (opinion, informational and narrative pieces) utilizing a graphic organizer. Students will practice writing more detailed sentences to help their readers visualize and understand their writing. They will support their detail sentences with examples/descriptions.


We will also complete Unit 3 in our Bridges math series. Unit 3 focuses on adding, subtracting, counting and comparing numbers. Students are encouraged to master math facts and fact strategies for single-digit addition and subtraction facts.

We will begin Unit 4 in our math series. Unit 4 focuses on the number line. Students will locate numbers on the line, use their reasoning skills and number sense to determine unknown values that correspond to empty boxes and explore addition and subtraction.

The first-grade teachers wish you and your family a very safe and wonderful holiday season!

Early Childhood and Community Preschool News

We will be as busy as the elves at the North Pole this December! The preschoolers and early childhood classes continue to work very hard this year. December is a magical time of year for our littlest learners. In December, we will enjoy a unit on Gingerbread and integrate the smells, sights, sounds, and feel of Christmas into our activities. We will also celebrate friendships, and work on different feelings, along with letters I, J, K, numbers 1-10, and a shape-color review. We will read many different versions of "The Gingerbread Man." We will plan many activities that center around the gingerbread theme. As a culminating activity to our Gingerbread Unit we will decorate our very own gingerbread boys and girls. December is a swirl in snowflakes in math! Children will explore the onset of winter as they create pattern block designs, solve story problems, and follow the adventures of Little Mouse as she learns how six-sided snowflakes are formed. Thanks to all of our parents who are so wonderful! Happy Holidays from everyone in the preschool and early childhood program!

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The Reading Corner by Mrs. Squires, Kindergarten Reading Specialist

With the cold weather upon us, it’s the perfect opportunity to cuddle up with your child and read a good book!

Creating a literacy-rich environment in your home is easy and so

important in fostering a love for reading.

Below are some ideas offered from the Reading is Fundamental website ( www.rif.org ) on helping to provide a literacy-rich home


  • Establish a regular time and place for reading together, such as during bath time or before bed. Read daily to your child.
  • Share your love for books! Read stories you enjoyed as a child and share why they were your favorite.
  • Talk with your child before, during and after reading together. Make predictions, ask questions or have your child try to retell the story in his/her own words.
  • Store books and writing materials in places where your child can easily reach them.
  • Model reading and writing for specific tasks, such as making out a grocery list.
  • Visit the library often and have your child get his/her own library card! Children love the task of choosing their own books and checking them out. This can also provide opportunities for lessons on responsibility, too!

Happy Reading!

Music Notes by Mrs. Moan

What a month of music-making here at Walsh!

Happy Holidays to my Walsh Family!

Early Childhood: In November, the preschoolers practiced walking and stopping with the music. We enjoyed “chasing a squirrel” by playing our drums, eggs and bells quickly, but had to STOP when the squirrel stopped running. In December, the preschoolers will identify when music is going up or down, and will practice a song about a baby bird. We will use a step bell to play UP and DOWN. We will also learn a banana dance! We practiced a new warmup, with a magical hoop. When a friend is inside the hoop, we must copy their movements. I am excited to have fun with the Gingerbread story and sing the Gingerbread Man’s favorite song: Run, run, as fast as you can. You can’t catch me, I’m the Gingerbread Man!

Kindergarten: The students brought “The Farmer in the Dell”, a classic song to life. One at a time, we added a wife, child, nurse, dog, cat, rat and cheese! We also acted out a picture book, Barnyard Dance. “Stomp your feet, clap your hands. Everybody ready for a barnyard dance!” We raked leaves into piles, then threw and kicked them all over the music room. We also learned that leaves can fall down to the ground (music goes down by step) or leaves can fly back up into the air on a windy day (music goes up by step). Students will practice showing if the music is descending or ascending with voice maps and pipe cleaners. Mr. Turkey made an appearance at the end of the month. He did not want to be eaten, so he decided to run away!

Mr. Turkey, Mr. Turkey, run away, run away. If you are not careful, you will be a mouthful, on Thanksgiving Day, on Thanksgiving Day. (to the melody of Frere Jacques)

In December, the Kindergarteners will begin learning about different cultures and holidays, such as Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. We will also study the story of “The Nutcracker” and listen and move to the music composed by Tchaikovsky. Also, we will be using our scarves to move to the music and we will pretend to be the Gingerbread Man in the well-known story.

1st Grade: The students have been hard at work practicing rhythm using ta, ti-ti and rest. We enjoyed our study of Veterans Day, and loved singing “This Land is Your Land” together. We even learned some sign language to go along with the lyrics. The students also had practice using a special cup during music class, for teamwork cup stacking and cup rhythms. We are looking forward to an introduction/review to the Tchaikovsky ballet and story, “The Nutcracker” in December. We will study different Hanukkah traditions, such as the dreidel game and a dance for Hanukkah. We will also be learning some holiday favorites, like “Jingle Bells”, “Up on the Housetop” and “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer”!
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News from the Media Center

With the change in weather students may have less time to spend outside. They can always spend some time reinforcing skills learned in the classroom. Tumble Books, Raz Kids and Bookfilx are all programs that are each linked on the iPads. These sites all provide fun ways for students to practice reading. Students have worked with each of these sites during Media time and in classrooms.

Also, we began using Logitech pens to help us create and draw. The classes really enjoyed using these since they give students more control over their writing and drawing on the iPad. We will also be using keyboards to practice some typing skills. This will help students navigate a keyboard more efficiently and also reinforce letter recognition.

Art News by Mrs. Deckinga

In December, the first grade students are drawing and painting cups of hot cocoa. Students learned how to draw a basic cup and saucer last month, but will be adding their own designs on the cups, cookies on the plate, etc. We'll be outlining and coloring small details with crayons, then painting the larger areas with watercolor.

The kindergarten students will be creating a winter tree landscape. It will be the first time we're experimenting with tempera paint (they've been asking!!) and we'll be using a variety of tools and techniques to create textures on the ground and on the trees.

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Making Math Count by Mrs. Romeo

Students are working hard at identifying, writing, adding, and subtracting numbers. Below are two new websites and activities to try with your children.

This month’s focus:

Kindergarten will be able to count and write numbers 0 -20.

Website: http://www.crickweb.co.uk/ks2numeracy-calculation.html - ncmenu

Activity: Have students make number cards to 20. Students should put them in order, remove one, and see if they can identify the missing number.

First grade students will be able to add and subtract within 20 to solve word problems. Students should also practice writing their teens.



1. Roll and add 3 dice then tell what is one less or one more. Have them write the numeral.

2. Each person flips 2 cards and adds. Next, they add one more. The person with the highest total keeps the cards. The winner is the person with the most cards.

Enjoy the holidays with your families!