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Dear Parents,

A warm welcome! Were on the Panther Prowl! We are so excited about our school
year! We are the Track 4 Marvelous Monkeys Class. Our class is led by Mrs.
Marina Devenney and her teacher assistant Mrs. Sue Sommer. We have been busy
getting ready for you. We have lots of new and fun things to do. Please read the
information in the handbook carefully so we can have a successful, fun-flled year!
Let the year begin
We will use a thematic approach to learning. There are many components of
thematic studies. Teachers and students collaboratively develop concepts within the
curricular framework. Reading, writing, listening, and speaking are incorporated
into authentic learning activities. Students share in large groups as well as small
groups. Subject areas are integrated as tools for learning. The learning process, not
the activity, is the emphasis. Integrated learning is more meaningful rather than
isolated, abstract concepts. Self evaluation is used by both the teachers and the
students to improve learning. We will be involved in both whole group and small
group instruction. Learning Centers will be used as a tool for instruction. The
children will have the freedom to choose free centers. In addition, they will be
involved in learning stations which will provide activities that must be completed
and integrated with our current unit of study. Our units of study will be based on
the science and social studies curriculum. Reading writing, speaking, and
mathematics will be taught, within this framework. All subjects and objectives will
come from the Common Core Curriculum which is new this year for Wake County.
Language Arts
We will use components of a Balanced Literacy Program where language is
viewed as a process that uses listening, speaking, reading, and writing, throughout
the day in relevant situations. All these process are interdependent upon each other
and are equally important. Language must be meaningful. Isolated skills often cause
much frustration. We all learn at diferent rates, but each of us is actively involved.
We need to know how to construct meaning from our reading, based on our prior
experiences. Therefore we ask you to help us do this by interacting with your child
daily. We will be providing you some ways you can do this at a later date. We also
have a reading program from Letterland . We will be using this curriculum to
supplement our program.
We will be using Letterland curriculum (a hands-on learning guide that uses the Manuscript
print), as well as supplemental resources. . Your child will learn to orm letters and use his!her
"nowledge o letters to ma"e words and sentences in their #ournal.
This year your child will be involved in an activity-based manipulative program
using Math Expressions Alignment lessons by Houghton Mifin Harcourt, and the
NCDPI Strategy Guide. This will be supplemented with many other sources. A
literature-base will be used when possible. We will teach manipulatively to ensure
understanding and application of concepts. Please do not expect to see a lot of papers
coming home. We assure you we are teaching mathematics everyday, but that doesnt
mean pencil and paper tasks. We will expect children to write about mathematical
concepts a great deal.
Daily Schedule
Our school day begins at 9:15 a.m. and school ends at 3:45 p.m. Students may arrive
at 8:45 a.m. The Tardy Bell rings at 9:15a.m. If your child comes to school after the
bell rings, then he/she must go to the ofce and get a late slip to bring to the class.
We expect for you to have your child here on time and not to pick them up early
unless it is absolutely necessary. Doctors notes will be required with signature. We
can not teach children who are not here. Our special classes (Art, P.E., Music,
Computers and Media}) are at selected times throughout the school year. The
schedule changes as Track Outs occur.
Lunch Time
Our lunch time this year is as follows: 12:40-1:10pm. We encourage you to come
after the frst 6 weeks of school to give the students time to adjust to school.
We encourage you to come eat lunch and spend quality time with your child. You
could make this a special occasion once a week or once a month, but please come. It
is so important to your child. Please make sure all money is sent in an envelope
labeled with your childs name and what its for. Lunch money can be paid in
advance in the cafeteria. You can also set up a lunch account online through using your childs ID#. Menus are available online at You will be charged a service fee for each transaction. Lunch prices
are $2.00 per day this year. If you have any questions, please contact Ms. Rita in the
cafeteria at
Wednesday Work Bag & Progress Report Folder
Each Wednesday, your childs school work will be sent home. Please go over your
childs work and return the bag the next day. Also, a progress report folder will be
sent home daily. Please take the time to review your childs performance that day
and sign it then return it to school the next day. All important notes to the teacher
should be placed inside this folder so the teacher can see it. Also, any other notes or
homework activity sheets will be placed in this folder for you to see. Please review
and keep all materials sent home.
Parent Responsibilities
Letters and Notes: When your child is going home a diferent way than what
they would normally do, you MUST write a note to the teacher (emails are no longer
accepted per WCPSS policy. We will send you child home in the regular way if you
fail to write the note. We are under policy to adhere to this. We want your child to
get home safely. Please help us do so.
When your child is absent, Wake County School Policy requires you to
send a note stating the reason for the absence (emails are no longer
accepted per WCPSS Policy). Although we encourage you to call when your child
is absent, we must also have a note. No exceptions!
Please send us a note when something happens at home that could upset your
child. Remember that what happens outside of school afects what happens inside
school. We care about your whole child, not only academically but also emotionally.
We also work and teach the social aspects of their lives. Examples that may afect
learning are death of a family member, separation, hectic schedules, etc.
It is important that you send a note if you have a change of address or a
new phone number. We need current information in case of illness, emergency, or
problems. We cannot communicate with you if we cannot reach you. Emergency
telephone numbers should not be the parents phone number. You should list
a relative or close friend that you know will be home. We will make an efort to
contact you frst.
Conferences: You will be expected to attend two conferences a year. One is usually
after the frst nine weeks and the other during the last nine weeks. There are other
times you may be called in for a conference.
We will send homework home to reinforce what is being taught in our classroom.
We will also have a reading log for you to complete each evening. These items are a
Requirement to complete not an option. We need you to help us model lifelong
responsibility. You will need to initial the progress report each night. In
addition, your homework will be to read the information we send home in the form of
notes, newsletters, and forms to complete. Quick response will facilitate a more
productive classroom. Thanks for your help and cooperation on this matter. We
appreciate your concern for these things.
Dress Code
&lease ollow 'ones (air) *chool+s ,andboo" polic). Flip flops are not allowed at school.
-his is a saet) issue. &lease ha.e )our child wear tennis shoes or shoes with bac"s on them.
/lso, please dress )our child appropriatel) according to the weather. *paghetti straps on girls+
shirts are not allowed or short shorts. &lease chec" the handboo" or all other guides to )our
child+s attire.
Being involved in school sends a very important message to your child. There are
many ways for you to choose to volunteer this school year. You can go on feld trips,
help a child in class, provide or help create materials, and attend P.T.A. meetings. To
ensure the safety of our children, you must come to the Media Center to register for
a background check before being allowed to volunteer. Registration is opened daily
through October 31, 2014 at 4:00 pm. After this date , it will only be opened on
Mondays. We will not begin volunteering until after the frst month of school, so that
we can have time for adjusting to this new classroom. Thank you for your
Behavior System
Jones Dairy Elementary practices PAWS which means:
P Practice safety
A Act responsible
W Work hard
S Shows respect
We have a star system in our class that follows the standard based grading
method. The following is the way the behavior chart is set up:
3 (green choice) means I did my best (met the expectation)
Note: If everyone in the class stays on 3 for that day, we put a
monkey on our tree. If we have 5 monkeys on the tree for the week,
We do something special as a class (movie and popcorn; a special
treat; or we eat lunch in our classroom, etc)

2 - (Yellow choice) means I can do better (needs
Note: If your child has a 2 then we have given your child 2
warnings and a privilege taken away or a Cool Down place to go
for a few minutes away from the group activity. Also the teacher will
do a one to one conference with your child to discuss the behavior.
If your child show improvement for the rest of the day, your child
may return to a 3 at the discretion of the teacher.
1 - (Red choice) means I need more practice
(Did not meet the expectation)

Note: If your child receives a 1 then your child has continually
chosen to make a red or bad choice after being warned and given a consequence
in our class. At this point, your child will be written up on a Discipline Form
for minor or major behavior and this will be sent to the ofce. The parent will
get a call from the teacher during the day in which the child will have to explain
to the parent what choices he/she has made. Also, depending on the severity of
the problem, your child may go to the ofce to see Mr. Chappell for a conference
and a report will be sent home
We also go over with our class our fve basic needs and work on implementing
these with the students and the students with their peers in everyday
1.Safety ( We need to feel safe )
2.Power/Success (We want to do things successfully)
3.Freedom/Choice (We need to have choices)
4.Love ( We need love)
It is important that you understand dismissal procedures. Your child will go home
one of three ways.
1.Carpool you must drive through the carpool loop showing your carpool
number. If you do not have your number, you will have to park and come
inside to sign your child out.
2.Walker you must park your car and come inside and go to the media center
to pick your child. Please bring your walker tag.
3.Bus you must make sure your child has a transportation tag on his/her
bookbag to indicate which bus he or she will be riding. This tag must stay on
the bookbag. If your child loses the tag, please inform the teacher so she can
replace it before the end of the day.
If your child is to go home any other way than what our records show and
we DO NOT have a note, we will send your child home the regular way. We
can not take a childs word. Please do not put us in uncomfortable situations that
compromise our childrens safety. Thank you for your understanding and
We will have community snacks this year. Two times a year, your family will be
responsible for sending snack for the class for the entire week. Please do not feel you
have to spend money on name brands or individually packaged items! You will
receive a schedule and suggested foods. North Carolina has a new healthy foods
policy. Occasionally we will cook in the classroom. You may be asked to send in
items for that activity. This will be important in order for the completion of the
activity. If you do not send in the items asked for then the class cannot complete the
activity so it afects all students learning. We will work with you if there is a specifc
problem. We want all to help as it means so much to children when they contribute
to the classroom.
Birthdays are very special. To celebrate, we sing and help each child feel special. We
will celebrate birthdays once a month. This will not be on a specifc childs birthday.
This helps build a sense of community. Equally important, it prevents hurt feelings
from someones birthday not honored. What this means is that if your child has an
August birthday, then we will celebrate the August birthdays on one day. We will ask
one-two parents to plan the celebration. Because the State of North Carolina has
adopted a new policy allowing only healthy foods we will not have sweets of any kind
except at a celebration. We will work together to plan an acceptable food. Also, to
celebrate birthdays parents are encouraged to donate a new book of their choice to
the classroom library. The childs name and birthday can be printed in the book as a
remembrance of this special day. Please gift wrap the book so the child may open it
in school with the class. A parent or another adult is encouraged to come to school
and read the book to the entire class. This can take place on the childs birthday or
another day during the month. We will arrange a time during the school day.
Classroom Visits
Our program has an Open Door Policy, meaning that parents are welcome
anytime. There will be plenty of opportunities for parents to help in our classrooms.
When you plan to visit it would be helpful for you to send a note so that we know
when you are coming and will be prepared. Our schedule changes sometimes on
short notice. Please do not come to the door and expect us to have a
conference. Our job is to teach our children and we cannot do that if we are talking
to you. We will be happy to schedule a conference with you. We look forward to your
visits! Welcome!!!
The best gifts you can give your children are roots to grow and wings to fy.
Thank you for sharing your child with us and for being our partners in the
education of your child. Together we can accomplish great things and make a
diference in your childs education.
We look forward to working with you for a successful year!
Mrs. Devenney (
& Mrs. Sommer (