Please call the school and let us know if your child will be
ARRIVALS AND DEPARTURES
School starts at 9:30 a.m. and dismisses at 3:50 p.m.
BACK TO SCHOOL
The first few weeks of school will be spent getting to know each
other and becoming familiar with new routines.
The behavior chart is
used for communication between you, the parents, and myself, to
allow you to see your child's behavior and homework completion in
class. The bottom boxes feature a star which must be colored in
either green (child has completed homework for the day) or red
(child has not completed homework for the day). The top boxes
feature a blank box in which your child fills in a symbol at the
Happy Face- Great day!
Chair- Take a Break
Question Mark- Think Time
Sad Face- Principal
Take a Break is what
you might refer to as "time out". However, this isn't looked upon as
a really negative thing in my classroom (although it isn't positive
either). Basically, if I've given a warning to a child, and they
still can't control themselves, they go to Take a Break, which is a
seat facing the wall in the corner of the room. They sit here as
long or as short as they feel they need, in order to get themselves
together and ready to work appropriately again at their seats. It's
up to them how long they stay there- they are responsible for their
own actions and behavior.
Think Time is a little
more serious, but comparable to Take a Break. If I've given a
warning, and the student has gone to Take a Break, and still can't
get themselves under control, I will send them to a classroom across
the hall that has a similar desk set facing the wall. This is Think
Time. At this desk, there are "Behavior Reflections" in which the
student must fill out the behavior displayed, why they behaved in
this manner, and how they could change their behavior next time.
After the reflection is written, students must turn over an egg
timer and sit for 3 minutes, reflecting mentally about their
actions, and then they return to the classroom. The reflection that
they write at Think Time will be signed and read by me, and then
sent home to be signed and returned to me by you the next day.
"Goodies" are allowed in to celebrate your child's birthday, however
you must let me know a few days in advance. You can drop the goodies
off in the classroom between 9:15 and 9:30 but anytime after that,
please bring them to the office as it's a disruption at that point.
We eat snack around 10:15 to 10:30am and that's when birthdays
are celebrated. Please try to have the treats dropped off by that
time. Also, please bring only enough for the class, as students are not allowed to wander the halls to give
out to other teachers and classes.
Bringing Lessons Used Everyday
Being Incredibly Responsible
For more information on Blue Bird
Binders, please click
Your child should bring a book bag to school everyday. Roller bags
are banned this year from VES.
BOOK CLUB LUNCHES
This assignment is optional. Each month I will assign a book genre. If your child reads at least 1 book of that genre and fills out the graphic organizer that goes along with it, then he/she qualifies to come to our special Book
Club Luncheon! At the Book Club Lunch, we all eat together, while
discussing the genre of the month and books/authors that we enjoyed.
I've been known to bring a special treat for the kids during this
lunch- anything from yummy food treats, to pencils, to a free
Every month or two I will be sending home book order forms for
you and your child to look over. These clubs offer wonderful
books at reduced prices – what a great way to build your home
library! Orders will be conveniently available online this year!
HERE for more information!
I will be challenging your child in and out of school. For more information on how I'll be
challenging your children, click
CHANGE IN TRANSPORTATION
Please send a note or call the office if your child will be going home a different way than what is listed on the enrollment card.
Students need to wear appropriate, comfortable clothing to school. Please put names on coats, sweaters and book bags.
Healies are forbidden at VES.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not
hesitate to write a note, email or call. My website is my main form
of communication, and it's updated frequently with important
upcoming dates and announcements. Please check in at
at least once a week to be most currently informed.
Mandatory conferences are held in the fall. Spring conferences are
optional unless you hear from me. I'm always available before or
after school when needed, or via phone and always by email.
In our school, we differentiate instruction, which means that
students are taught based on instructional level as well as
interest. Groupings change frequently, as students' levels increase,
or if they have an abundance of or less prior knowledge of the
subject we're about to learn.
In our classroom, students will learn the value of earning and
saving money, as they get paid for their behavior, responsibility,
organization, and good deeds. They are to keep track of this money,
and may save up for different prizes. You can learn more about our
Classroom Economy by clicking
Some classrooms at VES have an enrichment cluster, which means that there are
children who have been identified as Academically Talented. However,
there are only a small group of enrichment children, and this does
not change the curriculum of my class. Our class will be learning
the same information as any other class, but I will be allowing the
enrichment children to have more challenging work experiences and
projects, in order to challenge them to their highest level. This
work will also be an option for any other child in the classroom who
is performing at that same level, so enrichment work is not only
limited to children identified for the program. Enrichment children
will be provided with a math challenge each night in addition to
their homework, and this challenge is also an option for anyone else
in the class who would like to try it.
GOLD STAR OF THE WEEK
Every child will have an opportunity to be the Gold Star of the
Week. Each day of the week brings something special for that child.
I will be sending home a special poster and parent letter the week
before the child becomes the Gold Star. The child and parents will
have to do a little preparation for the week ahead (fun things, I
promise!) For more information, click
In our school, we don't use the grades A, B, C, D, F.
Instead, we use the
AP- Advanced Proficient
PP- Partially Proficient
ND- Not Demonstrating
These standards are pretty self
explanatory, however if you wish to have clarification, please don't
hesitate to ask. These will be the grades noted on the report cards.
We use Handwriting For Tears as our method to learning cursive this
year. Cursive will be taught in class, and normally will not be
brought home as homework. I typically begin teaching cursive after
the winter break. Towards the end of the year, typically
after spring break, students will
be asked to write everything completely in cursive.
Homework is assigned typically Monday through Thursday and is
usually a math review page, and completion of the weekly spelling
packet. Friday night
homework is always to get your Behavior Chart signed by a parent. In
the case that homework is not completed on the day it's due, the
student is to stay in at recess to finish it. What does not get
completed during recess, is additional homework that night. If there
is a valid reason why the homework cannot be completed in the time
given, parents are to write a note to the teacher and an extension
will be provided. Another reason why there might be weekend
homework, is if class work was not completed. I usually give an
adequate amount of time for class work, so if it's sent home, there
is a good reason for it to become homework. If students complete all
assignments Monday through Friday, they will be rewarded by playing
Homework-opoly to win prizes!
HERE to go to the Homework Hotspot section.
If your child has trouble with
his/her homework, please write me a note at the top of the page, so
that I can spend some added time with your child. If you've written
me a note, I will count their homework as complete for that day,
even if the assignment isn't completed entirely.
Your child will be writing me a 1-2 page journal response every two
weeks, that tells me of a book they've read within the past few
days. Journals are to be completed in class. I don't always give an
entire period devoted to journal writing, however as students finish
their in class assignments, they are to go directly to their
journals and have two weeks to complete this. If it's not completed, students must
complete the journal at home. Click HERE for more information on journals.
Chartwells Service has set up a debit card system for your child to
enter a pin number each time they purchase lunch at school. This
will eliminate bringing lunch money each day. They will let you know
when the balance is low on the card so that it can be replenished.
for more information.
We are in the process of "revamping" our mathematics program to corolate with the new Common Core State Standards. You may notice us using bits and pieces of several math programs, in order to fit the requirements of the state curriculum. While the kids might be working with the Everyday Math program one unit, you might not see Everyday Math again for several months.
We welcome you to be our Mystery Readers throughout the year. I will
provide a sign-up sheet at Back To School Night and will email you to
schedule you to read to the class. Remember that you are a mystery
to your child and the rest of the class, so don't give away the
secret that you'll be coming! Please bring a short book (that takes
about 15 minutes to read). When you sign in at the office before
coming to the room, please have them call me to announce your
arrival so that I can get the children ready for your story!
HEART JAR- Each time students as a class are doing a great job, they
are rewarded with a heart in the jar. This can be for silent walking
in the halls, working cooperatively together, or just doing an
outstanding job learning! When the jar is filled up, they are
rewarded with a class party of their choice.
TABLE POINTS- Each table group is rewarded one point for things such
as being ready first, being the quietest, working most
cooperatively, and more! When the table reaches ten points, they are
awarded ten dollars in Classroom Money to use on a variety of prizes.
Each time a child is "caught being good",
they are rewarded with a Bonus Buck (Classroom Money). They can save up for things such as
a No Homework Pass, lunch with Mrs. Gold,
stickers, and more!
Your involvement in our room, and at our school helps
tremendously! Take time during the first few weeks of school to join
our PTA! Your support of our school means a lot!
Reading groups change each time, based on
the skills needed for each book unit. We will be holding reading groups from Guided Reading (where I will be leading the groups in discussions focusing
on certain reading skills) to Skill Based Groups (working specifically with a reading skill that your child needs extra practice on). Mid-year, we begin studying Literature
Circles, where the children lead the groups themselves, asking their
own comprehension questions focusing on the main idea, finding
vocabulary words, illustrating passages, and rephrasing passages.
Report cards are viewed online three times during the year: December,
March, and June.
Our science program is centered on inquiry-based kits:
Magnetism and Electricity and Plant Growth and Development
Please provide your child with a healthy snack every day. If you
want to send a drink with your child, please send a water bottle- no
juice. If your child has a food allergy, please let me know.
Social Studies units this year focus on New Jersey, as well as the Lenape Indians who originated in NJ. We also study map skills and the history of Montgomery Township.
SPELLING (Word Study)
I test all children two to three times a year to find out which
spelling group they are in. I put them in groups based on their
level, and each group will receive different words each week. In 3rd grade spelling, we study the patterns in words. For example, one week students might be working with words that have the "ear" sound, so it would be words that have "ear", "eer", or "ere". It's not about memorizing the word list each week, it's about learning the patterns and applying them to new words.
CHALLENGE WORDS: Students take a 200 high frequency word spelling
test in September. I grade this test, and students can see which
words they got wrong and right. Each week, they can choose their own
challenge words from this high frequency list. The words they choose
must be words that they've misspelled on this high frequency test.
Once they've chosen the word as their challenge word, and taken a
test on it, they can mark it correct on their high frequency test.
If they get it wrong again, it becomes an automatic challenge word
for next week's words. Any words, for that matter, that are
misspelled on a spelling test automatically become next week's
HOMEWORK: We will
only do spelling on weeks that we are in school all 5 days. A packet
is given out on Monday, to be returned on Friday, with 4 activities
completed throughout the week. I'd prefer these activities to be
completed once a night, but I understand how different nights hold
different activities, so you and your child can make up the schedule
that works best for you. Just make sure that your child is prepared
for their test on Friday. On weeks that there is no spelling,
children will have short writing assignments instead of the spelling
If your child runs out of one or more of his supplies, please
replace them as soon as possible.
HERE to see a supply list!
If your child is late for school, please sign them in at the office
before sending them to the classroom.
All tests must be brought home and signed by a parent. I
expect the test back the following morning. If
you wish to hold a test for an extra day, please write me a note and
I will grant your request. This is considered part of your child's
homework to get the test signed and returned to me the next day. If
it's not, they will not be able to play Homework-opoly on Friday.
Students should not bring toys to school, as they can become lost.
We are not responsible for a child's toys if they choose to bring
Village Elementary School has a policy that ALL GUESTS (including
familiar faces) are required to check in at the school office.
However, I frequently welcome and encourage family involvement, and
will let you know when I need parent assistance in the classroom.
I feel that it is very important for a child to know that his or her
parents support their education. As such, we will try to provide
many opportunities for parents to volunteer and visit our
classroom. Your support can be exhibited in a number of ways. These
include helping with parties, assisting with special
projects, sending in treats or party goods, chaperoning field
trips, reading to the class, and preparing materials at home. Click HERE for ways you can help us in the classroom (and out!).
As mentioned earlier, my website provides you and your children with
everything they need for the school year. It allows your child to
outside of the classroom with the Mastery Club and Extra Credit Projects. It allows you to see upcoming
dates, announcements, children's published work, and answers
probably 99% of your questions! Please check weekly for updates.
During Writer’s Workshop our class writes together (interactive
writing) and independently (journals and book making). Students are
involved in explicit demonstrations of the connection between reading and writing. They
learn concepts of how written language works while engaged in the
writing process. I have high expectations for writing. I tell the
children in the beginning of the year that for most writing
assignments, I will expect at least one page written.
Make sure that your child gets plenty of rest. Setting and keeping a
bedtime is a wonderful gift you can give to your child. It will help
them to be their best at school.