VES Bluebird

March & April 2020

Happy Spring, VES Families!

Although it has felt like spring at times this winter, we are looking forward to spring actually being here. Time has gone by quickly, and we have been busy at VES. Since our last edition, we've celebrated Black History Month, Women's History Month, Lunar New Year, Read Across America, and National School Counselors Week. We held Character and Caring parties and had a festive Kindness Week. Students were treated to many fun and informative assemblies and programs, including We the People (4th), BRAVO Woodwinds (3rd), and Rosie Revere (whole school). Students supported their classmates as they listened to the talented Band, Orchestra and Chorus perform. 3rd and 4th Graders also had the opportunity to participate in Grade Level morning meetings and visits from our MHS Peer leaders, all focusing on kindness and respect.


As always, we have many exciting upcoming events. Our fourth graders will be touring LMS, traveling to UMS to see their production of Cinderella, and exploring the Old Barracks Museum. Third graders will be celebrating Arbor Day and taking a tour of Montgomery to learn about local history. Both grades will have visits from published authors and a chance to enjoy Experiential Theater. The Scholastic Book Fair will be coming to VES, as well. Fourth graders are also looking forward to their upcoming art show which is always a fantastic event!


We'll have Spring Break, Parent/Teacher Conferences and Teacher Appreciation Week, to name a few. There is a lot to look forward to! Check us out on Twitter - @Monty_VES. If you're not on Twitter, you can view our posts on the VES website (scroll down the right hand side).

Please Note that March 16th will be an Early Dismissal Day

Please see email dated March 9th from Acting Superintendent, Mary McLoughlin for more information.


Parent pick up will be dismissed at 1:15 and buses will depart at 1:30.

Day of Play

During the month of February, several classed participated in Global School Play Day, which is time dedicated for students to engage in unstructured, SCREEN-FREE play. This movement is designed to bring awareness and promote the importance of regular, unstructured play in the healthy development of children.


The day received such rave reviews from teachers, students, and administrators! VES is excited to announce monthly opportunities for students to engage in unstructured play. The upcoming dates are as follows: March 27th, April 23rd, May 21st, and June 18th.


Your child's teacher will send home details about the days of play, but in the meantime check out the Global School Play Day website for more information: https://www.globalschoolplayday.com/

Parent-Teacher Communication

VES teachers are always excited to share with parents all of the wonderful learning opportunities that are taking place in the classroom as well as provide information that can help parents support their child's learning at home. Teachers may post or share this information in a variety of ways. Be sure to check the teacher's resources on a regular basis to stay up to date on classroom happenings! Please reach out to your child's teacher if you have additional questions on how they communicate with parents and share student learning in the classroom.

Indoor Recess Supplies Needed

We have been fortunate with the mild Winter weather to go outside for recess on most days. In anticipation of a soggy Spring, we have rolled out a new indoor recess plan which allows students the opportunity to play games and engage in activities outside of their classroom with new friends. Thanks to a generous donation by the PTA, we have been able to provide some new games and activities for students during indoor recess.


We are still in need of gently used games to increase our supply. If you come across any gently used games while Spring cleaning, we would appreciate any donations. Games should have all of their pieces and be able to be played in about 20 minutes (chess, checkers, UNO, Connect 4, etc).


Students can bring any donations to the main office.

The Book Fair is Here and Family Night Too!

Students will be attending the PTA sponsored book fair March 27th-April 3rd, during their regularly schedule Media Center time.


Please plan to attend the Book Fair Family Night Wednesday, April 2nd from 6-8. It's an open house, so come and browse with your child. The 4th Grade Art Show will also take place this evening! Please come out to pieces your child created in Mrs. O'Connor's art class.

Join Us for the Fourth Grade Art Show!

Art will be on display in the main foyer, in the main hallway and by some fourth grade classrooms. Join us for an evening in our 4th grade art gallery.

Please come out and see the fabulous creations your children made in Mrs. O'Connor's Class!

All are welcome and encouraged to attend during your visit to the Book Fair Family Night on April 2, 6-8 pm.

Arbor Day at VES - Calling all Third and Fourth Graders!

The Montgomery Township Shade Tree Committee and community volunteers will be visiting third grade classes on Friday, April 3rd to teach students about trees and our environment. Each third grader will be given a Witch Hazel sapling to plant at home. Third graders are encouraged to take pictures with their trees in the coming year so we can feature them on the VES morning news next year. If you'd like to volunteer, please see the letter emailed along with this newsletter for details.


If your child is a current fourth grader, who planted the Tulip Poplar tree last year, take a picture and email it with your child's first name to Mr. Dolan at jdolan@mtsd.us. We would love to share it on the VES news so everyone can see how your tree is growing. If your child is in the picture, please give us permission to post it on the morning news/website/Twitter.

Parent/Teacher Conferences

VES parent/teacher conferences will be held from April 3-April 8 at VES. Families can sign up through the parent Genesis account until March 27th. Any changes needed after March 27th, need to be communicated directly to the classroom teacher.


Please note that April 3, 4, 7 and 8th are early dismissal days. Parent pickup will begin at 1:15, followed by bus dismissal at 1:30.

Montgomery Township Schools' Spring Break Dates Will Be April 9th through April 17th

April 23rd is Take Your Child to Work Day

Please notify the school if your child will be absent due to his or her participation.

Health Office Notes: Seasonal Allergies

IT IS TIME TO START THINKING ABOUT SPRING ALLERGIES….APRIL SHOWERS BRING MAY FLOWERS ALONG WITH SNEEZES, A RUNNY NOSE AND ITCHY, RED EYES….


Unfortunately, this is no real cure for season allergies; however it is possible to relieve your child’s symptoms. Reducing or eliminating exposure to allergens is the first step. During the months your child suffers from seasonal allergies keep windows closed, use air conditioning if possible, and stay indoors when pollen counts are high. Children should wash their hands and face if possible or shower after playing outside. At times reducing exposure is not possible or is ineffective; there are medications which will ease their symptoms.


During the next several months we will see an influx of students suffering from seasonal allergies. The classic triggers of seasonal allergies this time of year are trees (early spring) and grasses (late spring and early summer). The classic allergy symptoms and signs associated with allergic rhinitis can include:


  • Runny nose with clear discharge

  • Stuffy nose (congestion)

  • Sneezing

  • Itchy nose

  • Red eyes with tearing and itchy

  • Dark circles under the eyes (allergic shiners)

  • A crease near the bottom of the nose (allergic crease)

  • Frequent nose rubbing (allergic salute)


The trend in the Health Office this time of year is numerous students with swollen, red, itchy eyes! When we see a child for this we have them wash their hands with soap and water, then rinse their face with cool water. We gently wash the eyelids and lashes with a “no more tears baby bath”. This washing helps remove the pollen from the lashes and eye area. They rest with a cool compress to their eyes for several minutes.


If you know or suspect that your child suffers from seasonal allergies please be proactive and contact the doctor to begin a regime to minimize their discomfort before the season is in full bloom. You may bring in an allergy relief eye drop to be kept in the Health Office; this must be accompanied with your written permission for the medication to be administered in school. A Medication Administration form can be found on the web site. If the medication is an over the counter product it must be new and in the original packaging.

Practices for Staying Healthy & Handwashing Protocols

Please review letters recently sent from our acting superintendent, Mary McLoughlin regarding ways to staying healthy this season: Parent Letter - Flu Cold 2019-2020.pdf in addition to recently e-blasted COVID-19 Information and Updates that are available on our district website.


Our district leadership is working closely with the local health department, the county and the state to make decisions and establish protocols to keep all students and staff safe. As a school, our nurses and teachers are reinforcing healthy practices and hand washing protocols with students and our custodial team is implementing disinfecting routines. Parents are encouraged to replenish their child's supply of hand wipes/sanitizer to be used before lunch to supplement what the school has available.

VES Students Will be Participating in NJSLA (New Jersey Student Learning Assessment) Testing May 11-15th

More information and details will be shared prior to the assessment.


No academic preparation is necessary. If you would like to support your child prior to the assessment, click here to read an interesting article with suggestions on getting your child ready for NJSLA or similar assessments.

Do You Have Old Ear Buds at Home?

All VES students will be participating in the NJSLA assessment in reading in math. These assessments will be administered between May 11-15th, with makeup assessments to follow.


Each student needs a set of 3.5 mm earbuds or headphones. If you have an old iPhone set, or something similar, and your child does not have headphones in school, please send them in. See picture below for reference. They should be sent in a zipper bag with your child's name written on it.

Book Fair Family Night & 4th Grade Art Show

Thursday, April 2nd, 6-8pm

100 Main Boulevard

Montgomery, NJ

Please come and enjoy the artwork that 4th Graders have created under the direction of Mrs. O'Connor before or after shopping at the Book Fair!

Fifth Grade Parent Orientation for Fourth Grade Parents

Tuesday, April 21st, 6:30pm

Montgomery Lower Middle School

Visit LMS and meet Mr. Richards and Mrs. Kichura, as well as to learn about fifth grade programming, the school day, your child's elective choices and other activities that occur at LMS. Students will visit during the school day on April 21st, so this is a parent event. We hope that the evening Orientation Program will help to answer many of the questions that you, the parents, have about next year’s Lower Middle School experience.

District Visual Arts Show

Wednesday, April 29th, 7pm

Montgomery High School, Skillman, NJ, USA

Montgomery, NJ

Come and view the K-12 Art Gallery!

Third Grade Parent Orientation for Second Grade Parents

Thursday, May 7th, 6:30pm

100 Main Boulevard

Montgomery, NJ

This presentation is designed for parents of students transitioning between second and third grade to learn about third grade at Village Elementary School. This is a parent-only event, as students will be visiting VES during the school day.

3rd Grade Concert & Art Show

Thursday, May 28th, 6:30pm

100 Main Boulevard

Montgomery, NJ

Keep an eye out for additional details from Dr. Bell

Moving Up Party at LMS

Friday, May 29th, 6:30-8:30pm

Montgomery Lower Middle School

All of the fourth graders from VES are invited to a MOVIN' ON UP PARTY at their new school - LMS! This is a free event where our 4th graders can get more familiar with their new school. Your child must be registered in order to attend. Every child must be walked in by a parent or guardian and checked in at our registration table before participating. More details to follow.

A Thank You from Young Scholars Institute

Dear Parents, Students and Staff of Village Elementary School:


I write to wish you a Happy New Year and to thank you for supporting our Holiday Gifts and Food giveaway in December. The Holiday Gifts and Food Giveaway was tremendously successful. Others learned about your effort and donated clothing after the event. The families appreciated the gift of food and presents, which made their holidays much brighter.


I am still touched by the sentiment. We are thankful for your kindness. Have a wonderful 2020.


Sincerely,

Jerri L. Morrison

Executive Director

Souper Bowl Thank You

Dear Village Elementary School,


On behalf of the Hillsborough Community Assistance Network and the families that we serve, we would like to thank you for the generous donation of food. The items which you donated will be used to support the programs which are administred through the Hillsborough Community Assistance Network.


Cathy Faerber

Assistant Director of Social Services

Read Across America Cereal Box Donation

This year's cereal box Donation to the Somerset County Food Bank Network was a huge success. Thanks to your donations and creativity, VES was able to donate 438 boxes of cereal!