Milne Grove Messenger

February 2021

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Highlighted Dates to Remember

Early Dismissal (11:30am): February 5
Board of Education Meeting (7:00pm): February 9

President's Day, No School: February 15

Teacher Institute, No School: February 16

PTO - Pop's Fundraiser (10:am-8:00pm): February 19

Principal's Page

Dear Parents,

Thank you from the bottom of my heart. The support each of you have offered to the Milne Grove staff this year has made a huge difference in our lives. From the encouragement and kind words you offer during every interaction to the efforts you collectively made to get EVERY SINGLE CHILD to school to complete MAP testing in January, all I can say is WOW. One of the brightest spots of this pandemic has been discovering just how strong the bonds in our D91 community are.

Over the next month, our staff will be analyzing the MAP results. In combination with classroom performance data, we will be offering targeted groups and services to students. Please look out for communications from us regarding these adjustments. MAP reports will be provided for each student at the end of the trimester along with the current report card.

It is time for the 2021 5 Essentials Survey. The survey is administered online by UChicago Impact at the University of Chicago on behalf of the Illinois State Board of Education. It gathers data related to five indicators that can predict important student outcomes, including improved attendance and larger test score gains. These five indicators that affect and predict school success are:

· Effective Leaders

· Collaborative Teachers

· Involved Families

· Supportive Environments

· Ambitious Instruction

Teachers and students in 4th - 12th grade will be responding to the survey and 5Essentials Reports will be generated for schools who meet the 50% response rate threshold. These reports will be sent to schools and districts in May 2021 and will also be included in the State School Report Card.

Beginning February 3, parents are encouraged to participate in this year's 5 Essentials Parent Supplement Survey.This information has been helpful in developing past school improvement plans and we would like to continue to receive feedback from caregivers. As a parent, you will be asked to share your thoughts on important elements of our school's effectiveness. If at least 20 percent of Milne Grove's parents complete this survey, a parent supplement report will be generated for our school. Your identity and survey responses will be kept completely confidential and will never be connected to you or your child.

The Illinois 5Essentials Parent Survey Supplement will be conducted February 3, 2021 through April 2, 2021. To take the survey please visit ON/AFTER FEB 3rd and select the appropriate survey to begin.

For more information about the Illinois 5Essentials Survey, or to view previous years’ Reports, please visit Please call me at 815-838-0542x2104 or email


Jaime Koziol

Mrs. Jaime Koziol, Principal

815-838-0542 x2104

Mrs. Cindy Dragosh, Secretary


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Attendance Reminders

District 91 requires parents/guardians to contact the Attendance Office at (815)838-0737 extension 1, PRIOR TO 9AM whenever a child will be late to school or will be absent for any part of the school day, whether they are missing virtual learning or in person learning. The message must contain the following information:

· Student first and last name, their grade, and teacher name

· If they are a remote learner or an InPerson learner

· The detailed reason or symptoms for the absence/late to school (students that are not called in or are called in without a reason are considered TRUANT and unexcused, and will be reported as such)

A ParentSquare message is sent out to InPerson parents/guardians who have not called in their child by 9AM and have not signed in by 9AM to call the attendance line with the information regarding the absence. A ParentSquare message also goes out to parents/guardians that merely indicate their child “will not be in school/or on remote learning without providing a reason” or are “out due to a family emergency without providing details” requesting the parent/guardian contact the attendance office immediately to advise the details for the absence. Family emergencies may be considered an excused absence depending on the details provided.

Parents/Guardians can also check attendance in Infinite Campus at any time. Attendance is normally finalized within two days.

If you fail to contact the attendance office the child is placed on the Truancy List.

Student attendance, whether virtual or in person, is crucial to student success. Appointments during the school day are discouraged. If you child needs to be dismissed any time during the school day (e.g., dental or doctor appointment), please notify the attendance office prior to the absence. Proof of the appointment is required in order for the absence to be considered excused. See student/parent handbook on our website regarding make up work and/or a pre-arranged absence.

Outstanding School Fees!

We would like to remind families of outstanding fees. Outstanding fees have been entered in Infinite Campus. If you had initially set up a payment plan on your registration fees and have not made all your payments please remit your outstanding balance now. If your Infinite Campus account shows an outstanding balance and you had requested a fee waiver, please provide your proof of income documents now so we can process your fee waiver request. If you have any questions regarding your outstanding balance, please email Mrs. Krumlinde at

All eighth grade students must have outstanding fees paid in full before graduation. District 91 has also implemented a $20 carry over fee per student for any fees that are not paid in the current school year.

Kindergarten Registration is Right Around the Corner!

We are currently in the process of planning our annual kindergarten registration for next fall’s kindergarteners. We are tentatively planning this registration for March. If you have a child that will be attending kindergarten with us please email Mrs. Krumlinde at with the following information:

1. Child’s Name

2. Child’s Gender

3. Child’s Date of Birth

4. Where the child attends pre-school, if applicable

5. Parent(s) Name(s) and contact information

If you know of any friends or neighbors with an incoming kindergartener that live within the District 91 boundaries that are planning to attend in the fall, please share this information with them.

Grades 1-8 Registration for Next School Year

We are currently in the process of planning our annual registration for next fall’s students in grades 1-8. We are tentatively planning this registration for April. Please be sure to watch ParentSquare for this information.

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Notes From the Nurse

February is National Children’s Dental Health Month! National Children’s Dental Health Month brings together dental health professionals, caregivers, parents, and teachers to give children the best start on oral health. From brushing and flossing to healthy snacks and routine dental visits, the month also includes Give Kids A Smile Day on February 6th.

Tips for Brushing:

  • Don’t Skip - Making it a habit requires sticking to the schedule. Even when there is a special occasion or if the child is tired, we need to reinforce the importance of brushing.

  • Make It Fun - Songs that last 2 minutes will help. Reading to your child while they brush may help too. Even a puppet brushing their teeth can be motivating.

  • Learn By Example - Children emulate their parents. Brush with your children and they will want to be just like you.

  • Trial And Error - Try different kinds of toothpaste until you find the one that your child likes. Try using the smallest amount he/she will allow and working your way up to the recommended amount. Even a tiny amount is better than no toothpaste.

  • Don’t Give Up - The pain of cavities and lifelong dental issues is more costly and damaging than dealing with those few moments of nagging battles twice a day.

Remember that all Kindergarten, 2nd Grade, and all new students to an Illinois school for the first time need a dental examination form filled out before May 15, 2021. Please contact me if you are having difficulties finding a dentist for your child.

Mrs. Gilkerson, RN

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at 815-838-0542 ex. 2106 or at

PTO News

Pop's Fundraiser 10am - 8pm February 19th

Email with questions!

Like the D91 PTO on Facebook!

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Remote Learning Photos Needed by 2/28!

Parents, we need your help! Will you please share photos of your child(ren) in their remote learning environment? The photos can show your child at or away from the computer, hard at work or being silly... honestly, doing anything that shows what it really looks like to attend school from home. We would also love any photos you may have from the first day of school or on school grounds. Photos must be submitted by February 28!

Simply go to the Lifetouch link below and log in using the following username and password:



At the top, go to Manage Images and click on Upload Images.

Follow the instructions to upload.

Once your photo appears on the page, you're almost done.

Beside your picture you will see a box with the photo's id number - PLEASE CHANGE THIS TO YOUR CHILD'S NAME!

Then click on Add Tags and begin typing in the teacher's last name. It should auto-populate once you get to the third letter.

Then just click Upload and you're done! If you have any questions or problems, please contact Mrs. Tumino via Parent Square or at 815-838-0542 x2122. If you have trouble uploading this way, you may email me your photos at

Thank you so much for helping our 20-21 yearbook truly reflect this school year!

The Latest from the LRC

Book Notes

All grades are reading the Monarch Award nominated books and preparing to vote for their favorites in March. We will be voting via a Google Form, so all students will be able to participate. This year, since LRC Live has been recorded, the kids have access to all the nominated books we have read! These are found in the Monarch Award Reading Room in my Google Classroom.

February is LIBRARY LOVERS MONTH! Show your love by helping your child request and check out books from the school library - use this form! More information on checking out books, and options for online books, is found on my website and in my Google Classroom. The White Oak Library is open for in-person browsing as well as curbside pickup, and also offers options for free access to online books.

This year, while school is so different, it’s good to keep as much normalcy as possible in our kids’ lives. Regular trips to the library or checkouts of books from school are a good way to help keep some of our old routines.

I can’t tell you how much I miss seeing your kids in person. I am so grateful that I get to see them on Wednesdays - it’s the highlight of my week! I know Wednesdays can feel long - if your child balks at logging onto yet another live session at library time, remind them that it’s a time to relax and listen to a story. All I ask is that they not actually be in bed!

Reading Incentives

Six Flags Read to Succeed has been suspended this year due to Covid-19. Last year’s earned tickets will be honored thru 8/31/21.

Joliet Slammers free ticket info will be shared as soon as it’s available, presuming they go forward with the promotion.

Bluestem Bunch third grade book club will not be held this year. I was unable to find a good enough system for the kids to have quick and equitable access to the required books. I plan to host a different book club for the third graders this spring. ~ 815-838-0542, x2122 Follow me on Twitter!

Physical Education Feats

Happy 2021! Welcome back to another fun and CrAzY school year!

On Wednesday, January 20th, students in K-3 will participate in a virtual assembly during PE for the Kids Heart Challenge. A representative from the American Heart Association will present to the students what the Kids Heart Challenge is all about and how they can participate! This year everything will be on the computer.

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Throughout the month of February students will participate in activities that focus on living a healthy lifestyle! We will round up the end of February with our Kids Heart Challenge event during PE on February 17th, 18th, 19th!

Please make sure that your child is participating in all virtual PE activities. I have been stressing “If you don’t see me, you should be doing a choice board activity”. Days students see me, whether it is in person or on the computer, no choice board activity is required. If you are confused at all by the schedule please feel free to check my website.

If you have any further questions, please email me at:

Mrs. Draper

3rd Grade


  • Students should read each night for 20 minutes to assist with their reading fluency and comprehension. Students can access the Epic website to search for a book of their choice.


  • Please continue to work with your student on fact fluency for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. They need to work on accuracy as well as speed when practicing their facts. If you would like additional resources for fact practice, please visit the third grade page under math.


  • We are currently working on our plant unit in science.

Social Studies:

  • We are currently working on our economics unit.

Please feel free to contact your child’s teacher with any questions or concerns!

Thank you,

The Third Grade Team

Mrs. Georgopulos -

Mrs. Steed -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -

2nd Grade

Language Arts- It is important to continue practicing the phonics skill/spelling words and vocabulary words every night. Our reading focus will be on nonfiction text. Now that we are halfway through the year, students are expected to read longer passages and answer questions in complete sentences.

Social Studies- We will continue with Chapter 3, The World Around Us. Students are focusing on maps and globes, locating different places and features, understanding the world is made up of different landforms and bodies of water.

Science- We will continue learning about landforms and how they change quickly and slowly over time.

Math- We will continue with learning 2 digit addition. Then, we will move onto 2 digit subtraction.

The Second Grade Team

Mrs. Bolte -

Miss Podwika -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -

1st Grade

Superkids Reading Program:

  • Spelling and reading words ending with long vowel sounds

  • Decode and encode CVCe words with -s, -ing, and -ed endings

  • Decode and encode CVVC words with ai, oa, ea, and ee

  • Review using good, better, best

  • Read fluently and understand literary and informational texts

  • Using interjections appropriately in speaking and writing

  • Identify and use adjectives correctly in speaking and writing

  • Read new memory words

Language and Writing:

  • Focus on writing complete sentences with the correct ending marks

  • Identify a piece of opinion writing

  • Writing an opinion piece

GO Math:

  • Review related facts and fact families

  • Count to 120, starting at any number

  • Understand place value representing tens and ones

  • Read and write numbers between 110 and 120

  • Compare numbers to show greater than or less than

Social Studies:

  • Learn about the importance of President’s Day and our Founding Fathers


  • Exploring sound waves and how they are created

  • Discuss the meaning of Groundhogs Day and how shadows are created

The First Grade Team

Mrs. O'Halloran -

Mrs. Lyons -

Mrs. Stanly -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -


Kindergarten Newsletter article

Feb. 2021

The Kindergarteners are very excited that they are becoming readers and writers! We notice that they are finding words EVERYWHERE in school…in books, in the halls, in the classroom. It is fun to watch and listen to them read and spell. The Lockport Library is a wonderful resource for Early Reader books as well. Just ask Miss Jane, she will be happy to show you where they are! Journal writing has been a fun activity used to strengthen the kindergarteners’ letter-sound relationships and sentence making skills. In social studies we are reading and writing stories about fairness, respect, good citizenship and Martin Luther King, Jr. In February, we will be starting a mini-unit on the Presidents and celebrating the 100th day of school. We LOVE to count!! We are practicing counting by 1’s and 10’s in preparation for the 100 th day. In Math we will be continuing addition, introducing subtraction and will begin to measure, sort, and order and classify. Thank you for all you do to help your child be successful at school! ☺

The Kindergarten Team

Mrs. Adams -

Mrs. Preboy -

Mrs. Richardson -

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Mrs. Fiday, Special Education Teacher -

Mrs. Phillips, Reading Aide -

Early Learners Preschool

Upcoming Events:

Week of February 1st – The Early Learners will be introduced to the letter “Ee” and will begin their study of exercise. They will also be introduced to the number 15.

Week of February 8th – The Early Learners will be introduced to the letter “Yy for yoga and they will continue their study of exercise. They will also be introduced to the number 16 and will do some Valentine's Day activities.

Week of February 15th - The Early Learners will be introduced to the letter “Dd” for dance and they will continue their study of exercise. They will also be introduced to the number 17 and will discuss dental health.

Week of February 22nd – The Early Learners will be introduced to the letter “Nn” for nutrition and they will continue their study of exercise. They will also be introduced to the number 18.

Dates to Remember:

Friday, February 5th, NO SCHOOl, School Improvement Day

Friday, February 12th - Friday, February 19th, February Virtual Family Fun Event Ways to Get Moving

Monday, February 15th, NO SCHOOL, President’s Day

Tuesday, February 16th, NO SCHOOL, Teacher Institute Day

The PK Team

Mrs. Torkelson -

Mrs. Pederson, Bilingual Liaison -

Miss Ginte, PK aide -

Mrs. Nikki's Speech News

Need a Break from Technology?

Now that we have been using computers for online learning it might seem like overload.

Smartphones, devices, and computers are everywhere you look; they are used by adults,

teens, and even young children to text, call, search the internet, play games, watch videos,

and now LEARN! They are amazing technology that can help people access the world

around them, but they can also be a source of bad habits and behaviors leading to


Here are some ideas for activities that are learning and language based that you can try at

home to take a break from technology.

● Play Animal Charades: Family members take turns acting out an animal, without

speaking or making any animal sounds. The other family members have to guess which


● Make a Treasure Hunt: Hide different items around the house and take turns

asking questions and giving clues on where the item might be found.

● I Spy: Take turns choosing an item in the room and use descriptive words to give

clues without saying the word (i.e., colors, size, function).

● Role Playing: Using costumes and props (or imaginary ones!), you can role‐play

scenarios which involve different characters and jobs to target new vocabulary words.

Have fun at home!

From Super Duper Handouts #617 & 619

Please feel free to contact Mrs. Nikki McGushin at 815-838-0542 x2107 or email at

Mrs. Visser's Reading Corner

Tips for Reading Comprehension

Thank you for all of the support you are giving your child this year in the area of reading! This month I want to give you some tips for reading comprehension with fiction stories. Fiction stories are stories that are made up; they are not real. It is important to ask your child questions about the story he/she is reading. Asking questions helps your child to better understand what he/she is reading. Below are some questions you can ask your child after he/she finishes reading a fiction story. These questions are the questions we use when we want a child to retell the story he/she just read. Your child should be able to answer all of these questions about the fiction stories they read. Happy reading!

  • Who are the characters?

  • What is the setting of the story?

  • Tell me about what happened in the beginning, middle or end of the story.

  • What is the problem or conflict in the story?

What is the solution or resolution in the story?

Mrs. Visser, Reading Specialist -

Relationship Roundup with Mrs. Reynolds

Responding to Our Children’s Struggles

How do you respond if your child says, “I am stupid!”? What do you say to build their confidence?

Alexandra Eidens, Chief Creator at, writes about this struggle. She knows it’s very hard for us to hear our children talking negatively about themselves, and our immediate reaction is to deny their statements and say things like, “No, you’re not!” or “You’re smart, what are you talking about?” Here’s more of what Alexandra has to say:

“Unfortunately, when we do that our children simply feel unheard and not understood. Remember, your relationship with your child depends on whether or not they feel heard and understood. This is critical. The more you listen without trying to correct their thoughts and feelings, the stronger your connection will be.

Instead of arguing with their negative self-talk, listen and empathize. You can say: “I am sorry you feel this way. It must be very hard. I wish you could see yourself just like I do: a beautiful, kind, loving, caring child…” Also, take it further by asking questions (if you feel like they’re in the mood to talk about it). “I am sorry to hear you feel that way, honey. What makes you think that?”

“That’s a big feeling… Can you tell me more about it?” Get your children talking instead of telling them what they should be thinking and feeling. Validate their feelings instead of pushing their negative feelings away.”

In District 91, the administration and school board values your child’s mental health. There is a full time social worker in each building. Social workers are for all of the children, not just a certain group of children. Certainly you are aware of the SEL program at Milne Grove since your child attends a Google Meet session every Wednesday. This instructional time is dedicated to the social emotional learning standards set forth by the Illinois State Board of Education. Social workers can also provide more individualized services. There is no special form to use or process to complete. So please contact me if your child is struggling. You do not need to wait until parent-teacher conferences or some designated time to reach out. Contact me in whichever manner is best for you. Send me a message on Parent Square, email me, call me, or leave me a message through my website. Sometimes a child is part of a small group or receives individual social work services because something is interfering with his/her learning. Other times social workers can support parents with suggestions, resources, or combine efforts to provide a reward system. Together we will figure out how your unique child is best supported.

Contact me at and read my blog at


Milne Grove art students will learn about the art within comic strip illustrations. We will look at Roy Lichtenstien for a historical perspective, Garfield and the Peanuts Gang for classic originals, as well as modern day comics like Chicken Thoughts and trendy graphic novels.

We will be developing our own characters and storyline - putting it all together in frames for our own comic strip illustration. In the week to follow, we will continue by adding additional characters, scenes, and situations.

Thank you for your continued support and interest in the Art Department at Milne Grove.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me directly anytime at extension 1110 at Kelvin Grove, or via email at Don’t forget to check out the Art Department on the web at for a current listing of all projects.

Mrs. Cravens -

Technology Class - Mrs. Lakics

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In technology class Kindergarten and 1st grade students are continuing to learn how to use the keyboard by typing lessons on Typing Club Jungle Junior. Jungle Junior teaches children to associate each letter on the keyboard with the correct finger while improving alphabet recognition, dexterity, and familiarity with technology. 2nd and 3rd grade students are continuing to work on improving their typing technique and skills by typing lessons on Typing Club Typing Jungle.

Digital Citizenship Family Activity

Topic: Using Keywords

I emailed the PDF to you or here is the link to the PDF (which ever works best)

Mrs. Lakics -

Music Notes

D91 Families: Making Music Together.

Check Music Web Pages for links to songs to sing and play together.

Contact Mrs. Randolph K-8 Music & KG Chorus Director Email: PHONE: 815-838-0737 ext. 1140

CONTINUED SPECIAL REQUEST: when contacting me, please include student’s first and last name, grade, and homeroom teacher. Thank you.

BLENDED & REMOTE MUSIC RULES: Students are to have microphones OFF & cameras ON - pointed at student so I may view their movements in playing rhythms, moving, seeing the music they create, etc. for grading purposes during class. Students will need paper and pencils or have white marker boards with markers, to use during classes. Students will be asked individual questions for graded responses and will need to be able to turn microphone on and off when requested. All microphones must start and stay off until requested to turn on or for questions.

Grades K & 1:

1 - have at least one WEEKLY Google Classwork check-in question to answer by the end of the first class they have that week. That grade will be averaged in at the end of the Trimester. Students have only one day to make up late work. After that all missing work will be a zero and can’t be made up.

2 - Will be studying music instrument families - tone colors and learning to write and play rhythms

Grades 2 & 3:

1 - have at least one WEEKLY Google Classwork check-in question to answer by the end of the first class they have that week. That grade will be averaged in at the end of the Trimester. Students have only one day to make up late work. After that all missing work will be a zero and can’t be made up.

2 - are to complete the assigned LESSON & GAME in Harmonic Vision - Music Maestro - referred to as MM

Grade 3:

will be learning to play recorder at home - do NOT bring recorders to school until later

Musically Yours, Mrs. Randolph

To Contact Mrs. Randolph K-8 Music & KG Chorus Director

Email: PHONE: 815-838-0737 ext. 1140

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Substitutes Needed!!

If you like interacting with the kids, and can be flexible. If you enjoy different settings, and different age groups of kids. This is what you have been looking Contact Athena Dingels for details (must possess a bachelor's degree and be willing to obtain the sub teacher credential through ISBE).