Lower School Newsletter - March 3, 2021
NEW AND UPDATED INFORMATION
Rising Seventh Grade Parent Coffee with Brian Lamont/Course Selection:
April is the month for rising seventh grade students and parents to receive helpful information about Middle School to ensure a positive transition.
- The Rising Grade 7 Virtual Division Coffee: Parent Orientation will take place on Thursday, April 22, 9-9:45 a.m. Middle School Director Brian Lamont will present the ins and outs of the grade and what you can expect as a family, as your rising seventh grader begins their Middle School journey.
Google Meet link
- The Rising Grade 7 Virtual Division Coffee: Course Selection will immediately follow, 9:45-10:30 a.m. As a continuation of the Parent Orientation (and using the same Meet link), Brian Lamont will review and discuss course selection for seventh grade.
Google Meet link (same link as the previous session).
- In preparation for their course selection, your child will also receive pertinent information about seventh grade course selection, as Mr. Lamont will visit each advisory to discuss details and answer questions about the Middle School, the week of April 19.
Last Friday, we hosted our fourth grade game night, and it was a great success thanks to the help of Lower School Assistant Director Robyn Nichols; Director of Counseling Ilana Reyes; Fourth Grade Teachers Rachel Hinnant, Rob Taylor and Zara Perciful; Technology Instruction Specialist and Computer Science and Math teacher Jess Henry; and P.E. Teacher Jody Patrick. We look forward to hosting our Virtual Literacy Night on Thursday, March 11.
Making the Learning Visible
In the Lower School, our teachers provide a learning environment where students are actively involved and encouraged to inquire, and the activities are interactive, hands-on and student-centered. Teachers also provide authentic learning opportunities that are relevant to the child’s life experiences. Choice is a great motivator for our students, and very frequently, the inquiry that ensues is based on the students’ interests and passions as a class. Teachers are also intentional about providing field trip opportunities that enhance the learning experience.
Terry Leonino and Greg Artzner, the founders of the children's musical group Magpie, "visited" JK over the past two weeks. During their sessions with the students, Ms. Terry and Mr. Greg added music and song to some of their favorite children's books, including “Freight Train” by “Donald Crews and “Bear on a Bike” by Stella Blackstone. Through the use of sign language, dance and song, the students explored concepts such as transportation, the four seasons and hibernation.
The students in JK and 4B were excited to have their first in-person buddy time this week. Our JK students stayed in their playground area while their buddies used six-foot measuring tools fashioned from K-Nex blocks to keep a safe social distance. Buddy pairs, including students with virtual fourth grade buddies, took turns leading mirror movements, then enjoyed time telling one another shapes and images to draw on dry erase boards.
Kindergarten students hosted a teaching artist from Inner City-Inner Child. Imani Gonzalez read two different stories to each class and led them through a retelling exercise, using music and movement. KA read “The Seals on the Bus and Songs Around Town,” and KB read “Anansi the Spider” and “Barnyard Banter.” During their final session, KA and KB will share their stories by performing them for one another.
Last Friday morning, the fourth grade classes met with Julie V. Langan, the Virginia State Historic Preservation officer. She explained the process by which the "Virginia Commission for Historical Statues in the United States Capitol" has determined the prominent Virginian whose statue will replace Robert E. Lee in the U.S. Capitol. The committee has selected Barbara Rose Johns. In 1951, Johns was the leader of a student walkout at her high school in Farmville, Va., protesting the overcrowded and poor conditions of the school. Historians consider this event as an important and powerful moment in launching the movement to integrate schools in America. Mrs. Langan coordinated the removal of the Lee statue and is currently working to choose the sculptor for the statue of Barbara Rose Johns.
This week, sixth grade science students participated in an activity comparing how fast light and sound waves travel. Students are positioned in a long line and first watch the teacher strike two objects together, raising their hands when they see the contact. Then, with their backs to the teacher, they raise their arms when they hear the sound. The activity is recorded on an iPad for the class to view afterward and compare their reactions. The delay in the sound wave's travel is apparent as their arms are raised in the video.
Dress in Blue
Students in 4C spent some time researching fun holidays to celebrate in March. One of those days is national Dress in Blue day, which they liked so much that the class sent emails to Mrs. Hall requesting permission to let all of Lower School participate in this just-for-fun "holiday." Their polite and persuasive emails did the trick, and this Friday, March 5, all of Lower School is invited to join 4C in wearing blue, or they may dress in Husky Pride or wear their uniform if they would prefer.
As we begin to approach spring, here are this week’s suggestions for fun and creative activities, for families to try at home, from our Department Chair for Innovation Joey Starnes.
Empty Bowls 2021 — Two Days Left!
Don’t miss out on Empty Bowls. Due to the tremendous response to our Empty Bowls kick-off event, we have added more bowls to the website. The 11th annual Empty Bowls event, benefiting DC Central Kitchen, has moved entirely online. Our online auction/sale website closes on Friday at 8 p.m. You can bid on one-of-a-kind items, or purchase bowls for a fixed price and support DC Central Kitchen’s mission to use food as a tool to strengthen bodies, empower minds and build communities.
UPDATES AND REMINDERS FROM THE LAST NEWSLETTER
Lower School Virtual Literacy Night for Grades JK-3 Students, Thursday, March 11
Students in JK-3rd grade will have an opportunity to visit with local author Erica Perl during two virtual literacy night events on Thursday, March 11. Ms. Perl is an award-winning author of both picture books and several chapter books. During the events, which will be held on Google Meet, Ms. Perl will read a story and lead the children in an activity and discussion. The students are reading many of Perl's books during their library class, so they are familiar with her funny, rhyming stories. The events will be held back to back: Grades JK-1, 6-6:30 p.m., and Grades 2-3, 6:45-7:30 p.m.
Here is the link for Grades JK-1 registration
Here is the link for Grades 2-3 registration
School Store Update
- We are working with our vendors to restock sweatpants and hoodies in our most popular sizes. More inventory should arrive within the next two weeks.
- See the links below for updated inventory in youth x-large sweatpants.
- Check out the Last Chance Spirit Wear section of the School Store Website. With extremely limited quantities left, these sale items won’t last long.
- Items with limited quantities now include the sizes available for that item in the title.
- Spring is right around the corner. Grab a hat and t-shirt to enjoy the warmer weather.
How do I make an exchange or return?
- Please contact Adrienne Robinson within 30 days of your original purchase.
- Exchanges may be made for the same item in a different size or for an item of equal value.
- We are happy to issue a refund for items that did not work for you.
Q4 Learning Location Selection
Parents will receive an email on Thursday, March 4, to make the learning location selection for quarter four. The form will be due on or before Monday, March 8.
Dates for Virtual Game Night, Literacy and Engineering Nights
We have been so impressed with the resilience, compassion and perseverance our Lower School students continue to show each day. We have been very closely monitoring their social and emotional well-being, cognizant that life is so different for them right now. While we continue to meet our goal of keeping our students safe in their cohorts, we have continued to look for innovative ways for them to interact socially and meet and strengthen social relationships with their peers throughout the grade level. We are excited to announce that we are planning a number of virtual Lower School events, for the different grade levels, over the next few months. Below is a list of the events. More specific details will be shared closer to the events.
- Thursday, March 11, 6-6:30 p.m. — Grades JK-1 Virtual Literacy Night
- Thursday, March 11, 6:45-7:30 p.m. — Grades 2-3 Literacy Night
- Friday, April 9, 6-7 p.m. — Lower School Virtual Engineering Night
- Friday, April 23, 6-7 p.m. — Lower School Virtual Math Night
Dress in Blue/Husky Pride
Friday, March 5
Grades K-4 Virtual Supply Pick Up
Friday, March 5, 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Add to Calendar
Admission Welcome Phonathon
Friday, March 5, 4-5 p.m.
Lower School Virtual Morning Meeting
Monday, March 8, 8:15-8:30 a.m.
End of Third Quarter
Wednesday, March 10
Grades JK-1 Virtual Literacy Night
Thursday, March 11, 6-6:30 p.m.
Add to Calendar
Grades 2-3 Virtual Literacy Night
Thursday, March 11, 6:45-7:30 p.m.
Add to Calendar
Grades JK-8 Parent Conferences
Grades JK-8 No Classes
Friday, March 12
Spring Break Begins (through 3/28)
No Homework (through 3/28)
Saturday, March 13
Administrative Offices Open
Monday, March 22
Monday, March 29