• Monday, September 26th 

    Thank you to all who returned Practice Sheet #1 today. If you forgot to return it today, please send it in your child’s Daily Folder tomorrow. Practice Sheet #2 was sent home in folders today. 

    You will also see your child’s work from last week’s Literacy Stations in folders today. The students did well last week with our first week of Literacy Stations. Literacy Stations is an important time in our day for students to complete group/partner work reinforcing our reading skills, while I teach differentiated small group lessons.  I look forward to seeing the students grow with independence, cooperatively working with others and producing quality work while working in stations. 

    Reading Logs - I am super excited to see so many families have reached or exceeded the goal of reading 20 books during the 1st Nine Weeks.  These reading logs are due Friday. It makes my heart happy to see all of the reading that is happening! 

    We reached one of our goals with the school No Hassle fundraiser. We will celebrate this by having pajama day on Friday. Pajamas must be school appropriate. Your child should be able to use the bathroom independently in the pajamas so no onesie pajamas. We will wear tennis shoes with our pajamas. No slippers! 

    We started our unit on Community Helpers today. It is not too late to submit your picture and sentence to share with the class. Please see last week’s post for more details. 

    Thank you to everyone who has turned in the permission slips and money for our farm field trip in October. The forms and money are due September 29th. If you haven't sent these things to school yet, please do so by Thursday. Thank you!

    Comments (-1)
  • Thursday, September 22nd 

    Here is next week’s newsletter: September 26-30  Thank you for taking a few minutes to read the newsletter. 

    Important field trip paperwork was sent home in your child’s daily folder on Tuesday. Please complete both forms. The two forms and $25 payment are due no later than September 29th. 

    September 30th is the end of the 1st Nine Weeks. I am continuing to collect data and complete one on one assessments with the students for their report card throughout next week. If you know in advance that your child will be out of school any day next week, please let me know so that I may adjust my assessment schedule to ensure your child’s assessments are completed. 

    Last Thursday, I shared information about our Community Helper Project. Thank you for sending me a picture of you at work and a sentence describing how your job helps others. If you haven't done this yet, please email me these two things by tomorrow afternoon.  I will share your picture and read your sentence to the class during Community Helper Week. Your child will be so proud to have your picture shared with the class. Thank you for participating!

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday, September 19th

    Tomorrow is Picture Day! The pictures taken tomorrow will be used in the yearbook. 

    Our first Practice Sheet is coming home in folders today. As you read in the newsletter, please don't do it all at once - a little each day will benefit your child. This is a picture of what to look for in the folder: Practice Sheet Picture 

    Today, we began our first week of our Wonders Reading Series. We are focusing on the letter Mm this week. Our first phonics worksheet is coming home in folders today. Review the sheet with your child. If you see a lowercase m written in pen next to your child's m in pencil, I did this to show your child the correct way to write a lowercase m. When you see this on the paper, it is always a good idea to give your child more time to practice. 

    The students were so excited about our first day of Literacy Stations. Considering it was the first day, it went pretty well.

    Comments (-1)
  • Thursday, September 15th

    Here is next week’s newsletter: September 19-23 

    Community Helper Project - We will be studying Community Helpers the last week of September. I need every parent to email me with two things: 

    1. A picture of you at work. Whatever your job, whether you are an engineer, accountant, fireman, sales clerk, stay at home mom, or a doctor, I’d like you to send me a picture.   

    2. A sentence about how your job helps others. Please explain it in a way that 5 and 6-year-olds can understand. 

    Please email me these two things by September 23rd. My email address is lhester@madisoncity.k12.al.us I will share your picture and read your sentence to the class during Community Helper Week. Your child will be so proud to have your picture shared with the class. Thank you for participating!

    Reading Logs - I am super excited to see so many families have reached the goal of reading 20 books during the 1st Nine Weeks.  It makes my heart happy to see all of the reading that is happening! If you’re a little behind, do not fret. We still have plenty of time for your family to complete the reading log. They are due September 30th.

    No Hassle Fundraiser -  The No Hassle Fundraiser is happening now through September 23rd. An information page was sent home last Friday. Please consider giving a donation to our school. Send it in an envelope labeled with your child’s name and No Hassle Fundraiser. Or, you can give online by clicking this link: Member Hub.

    Checking Out from School: If you know you'll be checking your child out from school, please email me that morning so we can be prepared. Please avoid checking out during lunch, recess, specials, and P.E.  (Refer to the schedule that you received at Parent Night.)

    It is not too late to watch the videos that were posted on Monday. Watch to the end of both videos and you'll know what to do. Thank you for keeping yourself informed. 

    Enjoy your weekend! 

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday, September 12th 

    I have 2 quick videos that I would like you to watch today:

    The First Nine Weeks Progress Report will be in your child’s backpack on Wednesday. Please watch this video to know what to expect and what I need you to do. It should answer any questions you have about the Report of Learning Folder: Progress Report Video

    I made this video about the activities we’ve been doing in class to help with letter identification. Please watch this video to the end. It is less than 5 minutes. Letter Identification Video Thank you!! 

    Tomorrow is the Astro Dad's Pizza Night at 6:00 pm. I hope the kids have a fun evening with their Dads! 

    Comments (-1)
  • Thursday, September 8th 

    Here is next week’s newsletter:  September 12-16. Please take a few minutes to read the newsletter each week. I appreciate you doing your part to keep yourself informed about classroom learning.

    As you know the last several weeks, we have been going over the letters of the alphabet with our letter experts. During this time we talk about what the letter looks like, the sound it makes, how to write it on the lines with correct letter formation, and how to recognize its sound at the beginning of words. If your child still does not know all of their letters automatically, a great way you can help them is by using flashcards with the letters not in alphabetical order.  Another great tool to use with your child is the website starfall.  Here is the link to the website with the letter blocks that helps your child with the sound the letters make. 

    As you will read in our newsletter, another way that you can help your child is by learning to open items that are sent in the lunchbox independently.  We have a very short time in the lunchroom, our schedule for lunch is from 10:20-10:50. While this may seem to be enough time by the time we go through the lunch line, get settled at the table, then open containers, about 10 minutes has passed. Then we lose another 5 minutes for cleaning up. If your child still struggles with opening the container then consider changing what you send the lunch item in or open the container enough that your child can finish the process successfully. I appreciate your help with this! 

    Comments (-1)
  • Tuesday, September 6th

    I hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend! 

    Today our school district nurse came to Columbia and did a handwashing lesson. The students learned the importance of washing their hands and about how germs make us sick.  The nurse also showed students the best way to cover a cough or sneeze using their elbows. A letter was sent home in their folder that explains what was taught as well as when to stay home if your child is sick. 

    We will continue learning our letters with our Letter Experts this week along with continuing sorting words/pictures based on the beginning sound. We are also working on writing our names with correct formation and orientation to the line. You have probably also noticed our math worksheets where students are learning to write the numerals correctly on the lines.  If you see where I have written the number correctly next to your child’s, please help them with this one on one at home.  

    A local church provides snacks for students whose families need assistance. Please reach out to me if your family needs help providing snacks for your child and I will make sure they receive one at snack time. If this does not describe your family's situation, please remember to send a snack daily in your child's backpack. We eat a very early lunch at 10:20 so by snack time, students are usually hungry again.  

    Comments (-1)
  • Thursday, September 1st

    Here is next week’s newsletter: September 6-9. Please take a few minutes to read the newsletter each week. I appreciate you doing your part to keep yourself informed about classroom learning.

    Please remember that tomorrow is a 1/2 day. We will be dismissed at 11:00.  Extended Day is closed. If you are picking up in the carline, make sure your car line tag is displayed on your rearview mirror. 

    Tomorrow, we are having a school spirit lunch at Freddy’s from 11-1. Show this flyer when at the register.

    Next Friday, September 9th we will observe Patriot Day by wearing our red, white, and blue. I am looking forward to seeing everyone participate! 

    When your child comes to school each day, please make sure your child:

    1. has a water bottle filled with water and ice

    2. has the blue Daily Folder inside his/her backpack

    3. has their library book

    4. is wearing velcro or slip-on shoes

    Thank you!!!

    Weekend To Do List:

    1. Practice your lunch number! This is used to check out new library books.

    2. Remove papers from the daily folder. 

    3. Let your child practice rolling up their rest mat.

    4. Send rest mats back on Tuesday.

    5. Enjoy the LONG weekend!

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday, August 29th

    Friday is a half day for students. I sent out a Google Form for transportation and lunch selection last week. Please have one parent fill out the form by tonight. Thank you, if you have already filled out the form!

    Please return your library book daily after recording it on your child’s reading log. This week we are visiting the library as a class to create this new routine of returning our library book and checking out a new book. ALL students must know their lunch number. This is the number used to check out library books. Also, all students should have at least ten books recorded on their reading log. If you are below that number, there’s still time to catch up and reach the goal of 20 books by September 30th. If you have filled up your reading log, you can continue to record books on the back of the original reading log or on a separate sheet of paper. Remember, if your child has 20 books recorded on the reading log, they will receive FIVE Good Time Tickets on September 30th. If everyone in our class reaches the goal, we earn an extra recess. We can do this! 

    Class shirt orders are due next Thursday, September 8th. We will wear these shirts several times this year. Please consider purchasing a class shirt. Here is the link: Class Shirts  

    This week our writing focus is on writing our names. This includes making only the first letter uppercase. The rest of the letters should be lowercase. We are also working on writing our letters with correct formation and orientation to the line. That means tall letters are tall, small letters are small, and letters that fall should fall below the bottom line. All letters should touch the bottom line. Currently, our focus is on writing our first name, but you are welcome to start practicing writing your last name at home. 

    We are also working on using scissors correctly. We talk about how our elbow is by our side, scissors are pointing away from your belly, the thumb is up and we use a straight wrist while cutting.  We tell students scissors go open and shut while the other hand is holding the paper firmly while turning the paper.  These fine motor skills are very important.  By developing their fine motor control, children are able to access so many more things, and become confident and able students.  It would be very beneficial to practice these scissor skills at home as well.

    Remember to send one snack and a water bottle daily. We prefer the water bottle that has a straw or mouthpiece. The water bottled with an open top create a lot of water spills in the classroom. Also, remember that it should only be filled with plain water. Thank you!

    Please check and empty the BLUE Daily Folder everyday. Some folders are returned to school not emptied and papers are falling all over the floor.

    Thank you for reading this post and for your support! :) 

    Comments (-1)
  • Thursday, August 25th

    We will have our first half day on September 2nd. School will dismiss at 11:00. Extended Day is closed. Please take a few minutes to complete the Half Day Google Form

    This week and next, our social studies unit is Myself and Others. We're learning about how we are alike and different. Today we talked about birthdays. Only 7 students were able to tell us their birthday. Some knew the month, but not the date. Others didn't know either part of it. I'm sharing this because knowing your birthday is something that is no longer on the Kindergarten Report Card, but it is still important for a child this age to know, along with their full name, phone number, and address. 

    Please continue to practice rolling up rest mats at home this weekend. Also, please let your child practice opening the items that are sent for lunch (lunchables, applesauce, juice box, cheese sticks, chip bags).  We are working to have your child do these things independently. Thank you! 

    When making water bottles for school, please fill them with plain water only - no added flavors, powder mixes, or other clear liquids. When they spill their water bottle, these things create sticky messes. Thank you for your help with this. 

    If you haven't already done so, please order our class shirt using this link: Class Shirts Our class is ordering the sapphire blue shirt.

    Weekend to do list

    1. Enjoy reading your child’s poetry notebook.

    2. Wash your child’s rest mat and watch your child practice rolling it up 5 times.

    3. Empty your child’s blue daily folder and send it back to school on Monday. 

    4. Play the rhyming lotto game that is coming home in your child's folder tomorrow. 

    Thank you for reading the website posts and partnering with me to make this a wonderful school year! I hope you have a relaxing weekend with your family.

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday, August 22nd 

    Throughout the past few weeks we have focused on getting to know each other and learning our rules and procedures.  We go over our rules each day to help us continue to learn procedures and expectations.  We have made numerous posters that will serve as reminders for our expectations and goals.  Having structure and organization in a classroom is essential for a positive, productive learning environment. We have also discussed the importance of doing our best with all our work.  You can help your child by encouraging him/her to follow our classroom rules and by giving simple directions to follow independently at home.

    Last week, our kindergarten students had our library orientation lesson.  We learned our way around the library.  Soon, we will return to the library and have a lesson on how to take care of library books. Hopefully your child’s first school library book will come home soon! 

    I want to give a big THANKS to Mrs. Yeske! She took all of the information provided by families on the classroom directory slips and created our awesome classroom directory. Use the directory to send birthday invitations or to schedule play dates. Thanks again, Mrs. Yeske!

    Class Shirts: Remember to order our class shirt using this link: Class Shirts Our class is ordering the Blue Sapphire shirt.

    Lunchroom Food:  The lunch menu is available on Columbia’s website so you can talk to your child about what is being served daily. If you know the food options are something your child does not like, please consider sending a lunchbox. There was a menu change this week due to supply issues. On Tuesday, we’ll have Breaded Steak Sandwich. On Thursday, we’ll have Taco Salad.

    Comments (-1)
  • Thursday, August 18th 

    The students had their first substitute today while I was out to administer the DIBELS test to other Kindergarten classes. I look forward to being back in the classroom tomorrow.

    Thank you for continuing to participate in our Color Weeks daily colors! We are enjoying learning about colors. We have had fun painting primary and secondary colors this week. Ask your child about mixing colors to make purple, green and orange paint. The kids were excited watching the colors change as we mixed! I look forward to continued participation next week. 

    Remember you can order your child a class shirt at this link: Class shirts. The cost is $7.00 You will want to be sure to order a shirt for your child because we will wear them often throughout the school year. Please reach out to me if purchasing this shirt is a hardship for your family. Thank you!

    Please remember to check and empty your child's Daily Folder each afternoon. Thank you!

    A glance at next week:

    Reading - identifying beginning sounds, Letter Experts for K, L, M, N, and O. We are continuing to learn about rhyming words.

    Math - comparing groups of objects as equal, greater than, or less than, comparing groups of objects to five, and comparing numerals 0-5

    Helpful weekend to do list:

    1. Cozy up and enjoy reading your child’s poetry notebook.

    2. Wash your child’s rest mat.

    3. Have your child practice rolling up and securing their rest mat until they can do it independently 3 times in a row.

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday, August 15th

    There was a sea of RED at recess today! The kids looked great! We are looking forward to continuing our colors for the next two weeks. Please see the flyer Kindergarten Color Weeks

    Scholastic News money is due. If you have not already sent in your money, please send $8.00 in an envelope labeled with your child’s name, my name, and “Scholastic News.” Also, please remember to complete your child’s All About Me Google Slide if you have not already done so. Thank you!

    We have had a week and a half of practicing our school and classroom rules. We have begun our good time ticket system. The children love earning these tickets! Also, remember if your child has had a behavior that interferes with classroom learning or is not keeping self to self, there will soon be a behavior calendar in his/her folder that will be marked with what behavior needs to be addressed. Please initial the box and leave it in your child’s folder. Small initials in the corner of the box is perfect, please do not make additional markings (smiles/frowns,etc.). As we discussed at Parent Night, your child should be able to explain the choices he/she made. Please encourage your child to follow directions and make good choices. Thank you for your support of good classroom behavior.

    Comments (-1)
  • Friday, August 12th 

    Our first full week of Kindergarten was great!

    We will have Color week for the next two weeks in Kindergarten!!  We want to encourage your child to wear the specified color. Click on the link to read the note with all of the details: Kindergarten Color Weeks Thank you for participating!

    It is time to order our Kindergarten Class Shirt!! Our class will have sapphire blue shirts. The cost is $7.00. We will wear the shirts on field trips, field day, end of the year party day, and other days throughout the school year. Please consider purchasing a class shirt. Here is the link:  Class Shirt Orders  Let me know if you have any questions.

    Rest mats are coming home today. After washing the rest mat, let your child practice rolling it up independently. Please return the rest mat on Monday.

    Poetry notebooks are in backpacks today. I hope you enjoy cozying up and reading these with your child. Leave the poems in the notebook and send the notebook back to school on Monday.

    Thank you for attending Parent Night!! I appreciate you giving your time to get on the same page with me for this school year. If you missed it, I sent the handouts home in your child’s folder today and here are the slides from the presentation. This in no way encompasses everything I shared in the two-hour meeting, but it provides you with the main topics: Kindergarten Parent Night Here are two things I forgot to share last night...

    Deadline for Letter Expert pictures: I wanted to clarify the deadline for emailing the Letter Expert assignment. When you receive the Letter Expert assignment paper, it says to email me the picture the day before your child presents to the class. I need to be more specific. I need the picture by 1:00 the day before your child is scheduled to present. 

    Fine Motor Skills - Please give your child opportunities to write/draw with pencil, color with crayons, and cut with kid scissors. These activities, along with playing with playdough, lacing beads, picking up small objects will help build the muscles in their fingers which leads to improved handwriting. 

    You are invited to Coffee with the Counselor. Click here for the details.

    Finally, if you haven’t done any of the following, please go ahead and do so: 

    1. Send $8.00 for the Scholastic News

    2. Write a note to me about your child (directions were sent home at Open House).

    3. Finish All About... slide of your child
    4. Sign up for text messages: Text @22hester to 81010

    5. Connect to your child’s Seesaw account - see post from last week

    6. Put a complete change of clothes in your child’s backpack.

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday, August 8th 

    On Friday, I emailed each family a Google Slide for you and your child to use when making the All About slide. The directions were provided in the email sent on Friday. I have access to the slide, so you just need to email me once you are finished adding the pictures, captions, and Fun Favorites. Remember to practice with your child so they know what to say to the class. Thank you!

    The Kindergarten Reading Log is coming home in Daily Folders today. Be sure to read the note that was sent home with it. Please keep the Reading Log in the right pocket of your child’s Daily Folder so I can check in with progress throughout the nine weeks. Thank you!

    As you read in the letter about our Behavior Management Plan, we will be utilizing Good Time tickets. Your child can save their tickets for incentives or they can enter tickets into the weekly drawing for a chance at the prize box. I would love some help purchasing the items for the prize box. If you would like to help, please visit this link: Wish List for Prize Box items  Thank you for your generosity!

    If you haven’t paid the $8.00 for Scholastic News, you can send it in your child’s Daily Folder or bring the money to Parent Night. 

    I’m looking forward to meeting with all of you on Thursday at 5:00 in our classroom for Kindergarten Parent Night. The meeting will last approximately 2 hours. It is important that each child have one parent present for the meeting, preferably the parent who works with the child on school work and will be communicating with me.

    Comments (-1)
  • Thursday, August 4th 

    We've had a wonderful first day with the boys on Wednesday and the girls today! We had busy days learning our classroom rules, taking a tour of the school, and getting to know our classmates. We look forward to having all of the students here tomorrow.

    Our Kindergarten Parent Night is in our classroom on Thursday, August 11th at 5:00. It is important that each child have one parent present for the meeting, preferably the parent who works with the child on school work and will be communicating with me. The meeting is for adults only because it typically lasts 1.5-2 hours. Thank you!

    Tomorrow I will send an email with the information you need to help your child make an All About Me slide. This will be due on August 15th. 

    Friendly Reminders ~

    If your child is bringing a lunch box from home, the packed lunch needs to have a drink included. The snack water bottles are not brought to the lunchroom. If you want to send a water bottle for lunch and there is not room inside the lunchbox, your child needs to know that it is for lunch so he/she can put it on the lunchbox shelf. If it is not in the lunchbox, then it will need to be labeled with your child’s name and the word “Lunch.” 

    Your child should have a reusable water bottle containing water and one snack for our afternoon snack time. If you want your child to have a choice, please let them make that choice at home before packing it in the backpack. 

    Your child needs to wear tennis shoes without laces. This means they need to have velcro or slip on.

    Please check your child's blue Daily Folder each afternoon and send it to school every day.

    If your child is missing school supplies, send them to school as you get them. Be sure to tell your child to take it out of his/her backpack and give it to me.

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday, August 1st

    Thank you for coming to Kindergarten 101 and Open House! Here are the slides from the presentation for you to review: Kindergarten 101

    This school year, we will use Seesaw to share pictures from our days at school. Sometimes we will even share a video. Go ahead and sign up for access to your child's digital portfolio. You'll be so glad you did! Click here to sign up!

    Comments (-1)
  • Welcome to Kindergarten!

    I am excited about being your child's teacher this year! I look forward to meeting you at Open House!


    Comments (-1)
  • Summer Assessments, Open House, School Supplies

    Kindergarten Summer Assessments are July 21 and 22. Click here to sign-up.

    Open House - Kindergarten 101 is Monday, August 1st at 4:00 in the cafeteria.

    School Supply List for Kindergarten:

    1 pack 8 count classic color crayons (skinny)
    1 pack 16 count classic color crayons (skinny)
    2 packs 24 count classic color crayons (skinny)
    6 large glue sticks
    24 #2 pre-sharpened pencils
    1 supply box (about 6x9x2)
    2 solid colored heavy duty plastic folders with pockets & prongs - blue & green
    1 one-inch three-ring binder with plastic sleeve on front
    1 Primary composition notebook (3-lined paper with blank space at top)
    1 8-pack watercolor set (please only 8, not 16)
    1 pair of scissors (blunt tip)
    1 pack of Post-it Notes
    1 pair of headphones in a labeled plastic bag – No ear buds
    1 cloth rest mat – No sleeping bags, exercise mats or beach towels
    1 backpack large enough to hold the folders and binder
    Please consider donating Clorox or Lysol wipes

    Comments (-1)