Communication is very important to me. It is also important to creating a successful year. If you ever need to contact me, please don’t hesitate. I check my email daily and try to respond as quickly as possible. If you would like to talk to me directly, I ask that you please do so after school, unless it is urgent. Here are some ways that you can contact me:
School Phone: (509) 493-1560
School Website: whitson.wsvsd.org
(click on Staff Home and then scroll down till you find my name)
I generally send home monthly newsletters in both English and Spanish. I try to post those same letters under “announcements” on my staff webpage (whitson.wsvsd.org). If for any reason your child does not come home with a newsletter or it gets misplaced (cause let’s face it, it happens to all of us), please check the webpage for important information.
Keep an eye out for important information that gets sent home with your child.
School Hours & Absences
School doors open at 7:45am and each day we begin our education at 8:15am. I ask that when your child arrives at school they come downstairs to our classroom, room 257, to drop off their coats, backpacks, and turn in work. Then they have the choice of going to breakfast in the gym, or outside to the first grade playground until the bell rings. I recognize that the beginning of the school year can be an especially difficult transition for some students. In order to help your child prepare for learning each day, I ask that you please say “goodbye” and encourage them to choose one of our morning routines as quickly as possible.
School ends each day at 2:55 pm. If you are picking your child up from school at the end of the day, you will be able to pick him or her up outside along N. Main Avenue.
**Every Wednesday is an early dismissal day** School ends at 1:30pm every Wednesday.
Throughout the year, there will be times that your child may get sick, need to go to the doctors, etc. If your child is absent from school please make sure to contact the office at (509) 493-1560 or please send a note in with your child regarding his or her absence.
Breakfast, Lunch, & Specials
Breakfast will be served in the gym every morning from 7:45am-8:15am. If your child plans to eat breakfast at school, please make sure they arrive with enough time to eat and get to class by the time the bell rings at 8:15am.
Lunch is served in the gym instead of having lunch in our classrooms. Our lunch time is 10:55 to 11:20 am. Your child can have lunch at school or you can pack a lunch for your child to eat. Lunch money is handled in the office. **NOTE: We have a long day between breakfast and lunch. Any snack donations that you would like to make to our classroom to help make this transition easier would be greatly appreciated.
This year your child will be taking different specials each day of the week. These specials include: Music, Library, Enrichment, Physical Education (P.E.) and Computers. Here are the days that your child will be participating in these specials:
Your child’s safety is the most important thing. I like to make sure I know exactly how they are coming to and from school.
If your child is riding the bus to and from school and you are unsure of which bus they will be riding, please contact the office at (509) 493-1560.
If you are driving your child to school or your child is walking in the morning, please keep in mind that our day starts right at 8:15 am. If your child eats breakfast at school in the morning, please help them to get to school no later than 8:00am so that they do not miss out on any class time. If your child arrives after 8:15 am, it will be considered a tardy and they must check in at the office. I ask that parents please do not walk your child down to the classroom if your child is tardy. This allows for a smoother and less disruptive transition for all students.
If you are picking up your child at the end of the day, you can meet them outside of the school along N. Main Avenue. Please let me know who will be picking your child up each day. I am not able to let them go home with anyone that I or the office is not aware of. This is for your child’s safety. If the person, who picks them up ever changes throughout the year, please let me or the office know. Thank you
Our school has a positive behavior management that focuses on teaching what behaviors are expected in different situations and rewarding positive behavior with Cub Pride slips. Individual children and whole classes can earn cub prides for being respectful, kind, responsible, safe, and doing their best. Classes can also earn a Class Cub Pride. Every time my class earns 10 Class Cub Pride’s then they vote on free time in the classroom or an extra outside recess.
Homework & Volunteers
Each student will be given a book bag that will be brought back to school every day. This contains a reading log and decodable books that contain the skills we are working on for the week. The reading logs must be signed by a parent every time your child reads for 20 minutes. I ask that students read for 20 minutes each day. They can read more than 20 minutes a day, if they want. If your child reads for example, 40 minutes in one day, then you can sign off that your child read twice that day. Reading may look like: you reading to your child for 20 minutes, it may be your child reading to you or someone else for 20 minutes, or a combination of the two. The important thing is that your child has access to reading outside of school for at least 20 minutes each day.
Occasionally, there will be science, and social studies home connections that students are to complete and return to school. These assignments are extensions to what we are working on with our Foss Science kits and our Social Studies Units.
Your child will also have math homework that will be similar to what we have done in class that day. The math homework is great practice but depending on the lesson I may not send home an assignment each time. If your child does bring home math homework, please go over it with them and have them return it to school the next day.
We love having parent volunteers in our classroom! There are many ways that you can volunteer: reading with students, making copies, organizing the classroom library, and chaperoning field trips. If you are interested in helping out please be sure to let me know and I will add you into the volunteer schedule. Also, please check with the office that you are an approved volunteer before you start in the classroom, otherwise, they will provide you with the proper paperwork. **IMPORTANT: All volunteers must sign in at the office before coming to the classroom. Due to the difficult transition that the beginning of the school year can be for most first graders, I will not have volunteers start in the classroom until September 11. This is to help your child and others get comfortable in the classroom learning environment. Thank you!
- If you are interested please fill up the “Parent Volunteer” form and send it back with your child. I will contact you right away to finalize details in when and with what you may be able to help in our classroom. Thanks!
I know many of you have busy schedules, but I would like you to know that if you have any spare time to volunteer, I would welcome your help! I always have things for parent volunteers to do. Please check below the areas you are willing to help our classroom with:
____ Prepare materials (photocopy, cut out, paste, trace posters, etc)
____ Work with small groups (afternoons- science, math) in the afternoon anytime between 12:00 to 1:15
____ Work with students one on one like listen to children read and retell stories
(mornings-during our reading block) anytime between 8:30 to 10:15
____ Help out with class parties
____ bringing snacks
____ Scholastic’s book orders
Once I have all the times and availabilities of everyone I will call you to talk about more specifics.
My name is ___________________________________________
My child’s name is _____________________________________
Phone # _________________ e-mail ________________________
Thank you VERY MUCH!
*my school e-mail address is: firstname.lastname@example.org