Dear Sprague Community,
This is the first of many weekly notes. It is my intention to continue Dr. Goodwin’s practice of sending a weekly note on Tuesday evenings. I’d like to start by thanking our PTO for providing not one, but two parent coffee opportunities….on the first day of school for grades 1-5 and on the first day of school for kindergarten.
We have had a great start to the school year! The school  now feels complete with the addition of our youngest students, the kindergartners. They started school today and had a fantastic first day! Thanks to all of you who have been so warm and welcoming as I begin the year with you here at Sprague.
Some important dates to remember:
Tuesday, Sept. 9: PTO meeting in the morning and New Family Picnic at 6 PM
Tuesday, Sept. 9: This is also an election day. Sprague is a polling site, but voters may only access the gymnasium from the side exterior doors. They will not have access to our school and doors will remain locked and monitored. Physical Education classes will be held outdoors, weather permitting. If the weather is bad, PE classes will take place in classrooms.
Thursday, Sept. 11: Back to School Night. This evening is for parents and guardians. Students do not attend. Teachers will explain grade level standards, curriculum, and expectations.
The beginning of the school year is  a time to establish effective routines in each classroom. It is so important to set the tone for a positive and fun learning environment. We work hard to establish a calm, orderly, and safe environment for learning in which children feel safe and welcome.  We want to teach children to be responsible, contributing members of our school community. Our approach promotes respectful, kind, and healthy teacher-student and student-student interactions. This year, students will be part of our rule creation process. Teachers begin the year by asking students what they hope to accomplish during the school year and sharing their hopes and goals. Students then work with the teacher to generate a list of classroom expectations or rules that will need to be in place in order for all to accomplish those goals. That’s how our classroom rules are formed. Because they have been part of the rule creation process, it is our hope that students will be invested in following the rules. We plan to have students sign the rules that are posted in the classroom. Teachers will re-visit those general rules and remind students what it looks like to be respectful or kind. After classroom rules are established, we will look to form a set of school wide rules for Sprague that are easy to remember.
The beginning of the school year is also a time for teachers to get to know students both as learners and as individuals. As such, they will be completing assessments in both literacy and numeracy during the month of September. They will use the results to plan for instruction and instructional groupings.
I am delighted to share happy news about new babies. You may be aware that our literacy specialist, Mrs. Christina Cooney,  had a baby boy named Abe in August. We just received news that first grade teacher, Mrs. Dara Gaul also had a baby boy named Axel. Our sincere congratulations go out to their happy families!
I have been spending some time in the cafeteria with students at lunch time. They seem to enjoy each other’s company and it is a nice chance for me to chat with them as they relax and eat.  I have attached some lunch time photos so you can see how sweet they are! Have a great week!
Warm regards,
Susan Snyder

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Weekly note from Ms. Snyder 9-1-14
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