The Patrick Henry Post

October 7th, 2022

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Welcome to October!

One of the greatest things about elementary school is celebrating the change in seasons. Kids are very in tune with nature, and the change in weather usually brings a sense of renewal of energy and engagement. Teachers redecorate their rooms and bulletin boards, and students celebrate together as a class family. This month, we are entering the magical time of Halloween, pumpkins in the garden, and a new chance at perfect attendance. Parents, make sure your child is here every day on time, and your student will be included in the end of the month celebration for October Perfect Attendance! You will also be invited to this exciting event!

Welcome to Autumn!

Highlight on Special Education

At Patrick Henry, we have several staff members who provide services for our students with disabilities. Special Education is just what it sounds like - special! Students with an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) work with teachers to ensure they receive the services they need in order to be successful. We have an awesome team at Patrick Henry who work 1:1 or in small groups focused on reading, math, writing, speech, language, and social skills. Take a look below for some highlights from our Special Education Department!

From the Desk of Mr. Griffin

Students in speech are working hard building phonemic awareness skills or learning how to distinguish between and manipulate speech sounds in their minds. Speech sound awareness and manipulation, also called Phonemic Awareness, is a foundational skill for reading and speech development. Other students come to speech working on building their vocabularies or improving their ability to formulate sentences of greater and greater complexity and nuance. Students’ language goals range from describing pictures and real world situations with accurate prepositional phrases to generating examples or definitions for classroom vocabulary. Students take turns working on their individual speech and language challenges before getting a chance to all play a game together. In speech, everybody works on their own skills and goals while encouraging one another to stay focused and have fun.

Occupational, Music, and Physical Therapy

Our Special Education department also offers a wide array of therapies that assist in the physical and mental development of our students. We have an incredible number of providers who come to Patrick Henry on a scheduled basis to work with students on fine motor and gross motor skills, and they even incorporate sports, music, art, and dancing into their practice!

Highlight on Intervention

Special Education is a department that services students with an IEP, but we also have a team of interventionists who work with all of our students on interventions to make sure their education is individualized to their needs. We have two Reading Interventionists who pull small groups and individual students to make sure their reading levels are constantly growing. Take a look below to see highlights from our Reading Specialists!

From the Desk of Ms. Evans

My role as a reading interventionist…..Let’s see…It’s like a being a medical doctor. First, I do a diagnostic (assessment). It’s like a physical in the English Language Arts world. I need to see just how healthy the students are, or just how unhealthy they are in ELA. I use STAR, and Easy CBM is STAR as my beginning measurement. If they are healthy, they can continue to learn within their classrooms, without a visit from me. But! If our kids have a little problem that needs tweaking to set them upright and on the road to success, then I set up daily appointments for them to come and see me in small groups. Sometimes, it takes only a few weeks to heal them of their ELA shortcomings. I work with students in Kindergarten – 2nd Grade.

Lately, I have been focusing on students who do not know letter sounds, or have letter recognition. I make it fun. I have an ABC rug, and they play ABC twister on the rug. I also host ABC Bingo every Friday, and give a prize to the winner. This is a highly competitive activity, and they learn very quickly, in order to win the prize. I also send a cut-out, PIG home, with letters or sight words that slide through the pig’s belly one at a time. This is another fun way of learning. I also involve parents. I ask them to help me with the student’s “condition." I also inform the parents of where their child SHOULD be in their ranking in their particular grade. This ABC adjustment will provide them the tools to sound out sight words, and begin to read. After they learn letter sounds and letters, we begin to read. I keep them in “Reading Rehab” until they are strong enough to feel confident, and strong in their classrooms for whole group learning with their teachers.

Reading Growth Success Stories

Even though we have not even completed our first quarter of school, our students are already showing reading growth! We are THRILLED to celebrate our students' achievement because they have put in the hard work that is necessary for long-lasting, impactful change in their reading skills! We are so proud of our students for having the right attitude to learn and grow!!

We are also thankful for all of our classroom teachers and interventionists who work day in and day out to make sure they meet the needs of every single student in our school, and push them to their greatest level of achievement. THANK YOU to:

  • Upper Elementary Classroom Teachers - Ms. Brown, Ms. Hammock, Ms. Fales, Ms. Ivory - who switch from "learning to read" to "reading to learn" even when students still need fundamental phonics skills
  • Lower Elementary Classroom Teachers - Ms. Ivory, Ms. Hadley, Ms. Versen, Ms. Willard - who make sure our students get the most important building blocks of intermediate readers and grow through the science of reading
  • Early Childhood Classroom Teachers - Ms. Young, Ms. Womack, Ms. Smith, and Ms. Munnelly - who take our youngest students and make sure they leave preschool prepared for elementary school with letter and sound recognition and all of the skills of early readers
  • Support Staff - Ms. Bankhead, Ms. Qiarra, Mr. Malik, Ms. Hill, Mr. Edmund, Ms. Zonnie, Ms. Moore, and Ms. Wendy - who make sure that a classroom teacher can continue teaching while the support team handles the logistics of the classroom
  • Interventionists - Ms. Evans and Ms. Byson - who pull students for highly concentrated, 1:1 and small group instruction in reading to ensure that every child has their needs met
  • Special Education Teachers - Ms. Bailey, Ms. Jones, and Mr. Griffin - who work with our students with special needs and make sure that their individualized education plans are enacted daily with fidelity
  • Leadership Team - Ms. Jones, Ms. Harris, Ms. Smith, Ms. Webb, and Ms. Gregory - who ensure that the social, emotional, and behavioral needs of every student are met so that our children can concentrate on learning

Our school is a true village of people who are dedicated to our students' success, and it is the most thrilling thing in the world when we see results like we are seeing right now!

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Using Specialized Program as Intervention and Enrichment

This year, we have a pilot program in our 3rd grade class that we hope to expand to all classrooms next year - robotics! This is an enrichment program that also serves as an intervention for math, science, reading, and social skills! Students in Ms. Jami's class get to learn how to code their robots and make them move with their mathematical equations. They have to work together to make their experiments a success, and they also get concentrated work time to make sure their coding is accurate. It is awesome to watch and fun to see how intervention can be so exciting and engaging for our students!

Congratulations, STAR Winners!

Thank you, Seed St. Louis!

Lessons in the Garden

Mrs. Ralphs allowed her first grade PE class to turn into a garden lesson with Seed St. Louis! Seed is one of our key partners who make sure our garden stays magical, and our students stay informed! This week, we had educators come in to teach Ms. Versen's 1st graders about healthy eating and how to grow beautiful fresh produce in our school garden. The students had a wonderful experience and came away with a healthier idea of how to eat well!
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Congratulations, Strong Students!

Curl Up Champions

Each of the students pictured below got 80 curl ups in the PE assessment, which is the MOST that you can get! WOW, I am glad to know that we have such strong students here to keep us safe!
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Thank You, Spire!

Free Cardinals Tickets for the Patrick Henry Staff

Thank you to our community partner, Spire, who provided 30 free tickets to our staff for the last home game of the Cardinals regular season. This was such a special way to let our staff relax after a challenging first quarter of the school year, and how INCREDIBLE was it that they got to see Albert Pujols hit his historic 702nd homerun?! Congratulations to the Cardinals on an amazing season, thank you to Spire for an incredible gift, and good luck to our Redbirds in the post season!

Oh, and congratulations to Dr. Kelvin Adams, Superintendent of St. Louis Public Schools, who threw out the first pitch on Friday's evening game!

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Upcoming Events

October 13th: Magnet Middle School Expo for 5th Grade Parents

Attention all 5th Grade Parents!!!

The time has come for your child to select their middle schools and turn in an application for their top choice school. We will be reviewing school options with your student at school, but we also know this is an important decision for your family to make together. We encourage you to go to the SLPS Magnet Middle School Expo on October 13th with your child so you can learn all about their options for next year!

October 14th: No School

On Friday, October 14th, all SLPS schools are closed. Teachers will be involved in Professional Development.

October 14th: 1st Quarter Report Cards

On Friday, October 14th, families will receive their child's 1st quarter Report Card via email. Please make sure you have updated your contact information if you do not have a current email address or phone number. You can update your contact information by calling the school at 314.231.7284 or by clicking here.

October 17-20th: Parent Teacher Conferences

Parents are invited in person for Parent-Teacher Conferences the week of October 17th, Monday-Thursday. Please schedule your conference with your child's teacher. Available times are listed below:
  • Monday, October 17th, 3:15-5:15pm
  • Tuesday, October 18th, 3:15-5:15pm
  • Wednesday, October 19th, 3:15-5:15pm
  • Thursday, October 20th, 3:15-3:45pm

You should also receive a packet of interventions from your child's teacher this week. Every student will receive a one-pager to explain their current Reading and Math level, and what you can do at home with your child to make sure they are always challenged and growing as Readers and Mathematicians!

October 17-20th: Afterschool is CLOSED

Because we will be in the middle of Parent-Teacher Conferences, all Afterschool programming will be CLOSED the week of October 17th. Please plan ahead.

October 21st: No School

All SLPS schools will be closed on Friday, October 21st.

October 24th-28th: Red Ribbon Week

October 24th - 28th is Red Ribbon Week! Crystal Gregory will be leading the charge for this week, and one of the elements is a dress-up Spirit Week! See below for specific days, and encourage your child to dress up with us!

  • Monday, Oct 24th: Nerd Day
  • Tuesday, Oct 25th: Twin Day
  • Wednesday, Oct 26th: Wacky Tacky Day
  • Thursday, Oct 27th: Throwback Thursday
  • Friday, Oct 28th: Halloween Costumes ​

October 28th: Patrick Henry Halloween

On Friday, October 28th, Patrick Henry will celebrate Halloween with our students through an amazing event at the school! We invite all students to bring or wear a costume to school that day, but please remember that all costumes must still be school-appropriate and cannot have any type of weapon, even as a part of the costume. We are always in need of family support for this event, so please see the ways you can contribute below:

  • Donate candy to the school for our candy stations (all candy welcome!)
  • Volunteer the day of the event (Friday, October 28th, 1:00-2:30pm) - We need people to help run our stations, walk with the students through the event, and support the teachers as they assist students with costumes and candy collection
  • Donate bags for the students to use to collect and hold their candy

Parents must be a registered volunteer with the district in order to participate in this event. Please contact Shanice Webb for more details:, 314.231.7284

October 31st: Perfect Attendance Celebration

All students with perfect attendance for the month of October will be celebrated on Monday, October 31st. Their families will also be invited for this celebration with light refreshments! In order to qualify, students must have:

  • Zero absences
  • Zero late arrivals
  • Zero early dismissals

Students who qualify will receive an invitation for their families from Ms. Shanice Webb on Friday, October 28th.

November 2nd: No Afterschool Program

Staff will be engaged in their monthly Staff Meeting and there will be NO Afterschool Programming on Wednesday, November 2nd. Please plan ahead.