Scotland Elementary School
Principal: Mrs. Cathy Pinsonneault
Superintendent: Dr. Baran
Kindergarten Teacher: Miss Jessica Ristow
Kindergarten Paraprofessionals: Ms. Ausburger and Ms. Lyons
About the Teacher
Hello, I’m Miss Ristow and I’d like to welcome you to Kindergarten! I’m excited to begin our new primary wing program with our young learners. At Eastern Connecticut State University, I studied Early Childhood Education and Sociology. I most recently attended Quinnipiac University to further my education, earning a Masters of Science in Teacher Leadership with a concentration on Literacy. I love teaching in early childhood classrooms because I get to witness so many amazing milestones and achievements as these children grow each day. I am ready for an awesome adventure with our early childhood students!
Scotland Elementary School is a great place to learn and grow. We are a close-knit school, caring and always ready to accept new techniques and methods in education. The preschool and kindergarten programs are accredited with NAEYC.
Our goal in kindergarten is to first enjoy learning, to feel comfortable and to enjoy coming to school each and every day. Kindergarten is the foundation of school. It is a year of growing socially, emotionally, physically and intellectually. If a child has a wonderful learning year in kindergarten he/she will feel confident and develop a positive attitude about school, this attitude will carry over to the next grade. Each child is very different; each child comes to kindergarten with completely different needs. It is our job to assist each child in meeting those needs. We have wonderful learning materials in our kindergarten. We have leveled books, wonderful literature (in class and the school library), a new reading program, a math program, a science program, a handwriting program, a social studies program, and a health program. We also have specials such as P.E., library, music, art, computers and health.
School begins at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 3:00 p.m. If you arrive before 8:30 we have an early bird program in the gym. Students do not go into classrooms until 8:30 when there is a teacher in the classroom. On early dismissal days (check your school calendar) we will dismiss at 1:00 p.m. During inclement weather, there may be a 90 minute delay which means school will begin at 10:00 a.m. or we may need to dismiss early at 1:00 p.m.
If there is a change in your child’s transportation, please send in two notes, one to the teacher and one to the bus driver. This way we will make double sure to follow through in making sure your child gets to his/her destination – safely.
I cannot express enough the importance of attending school, daily. Our most wonderful learning takes place within the classroom with our classmates during group times, partner time and times that we work one on one with the teachers. If you are ill we do understand. This would be the time to rest and return back to school when you are feeling better. When your child is absent please call the school and let the secretary know why your child is absent. You may also send in a note for your child’s file upon return of school or you may call and leave a message with the secretary and or speak to the nurse.
Each child will receive a folder from the office. This folder will need to come back and forth to school daily. All-important papers and homework will be sent home in this folder.
All students will be asked to carry a regular sized school back pack to hold their snacks/lunches, books, etc.
Each day we will have two 15-minute snack times. The snack times are short breaks for your child. Children are encouraged to bring to school nutritious snacks for each snack time. Some ideas are: fruit, veggies, cheese, yogurt, crackers and peanut butter. You may purchase milk (chocolate or white) for your child for the a.m. snack at .50 each.
Each day we will have lunch at 11:50 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Hot lunch is served daily. If you wish to purchase the lunch it is $3.00. A menu does go home each month. Milk does come with the hot lunch. Our school is involved with the wellness program and work hard to bring to the Scotland children nutritious meals. On Thursdays children may purchase ice cream as well for .75 cents.
Breakfast is provided each morning free of charge to all students who would like it.
Each day, weather permitting, we will have two, approximately 15 minute, recesses, once in the a.m. and one before lunch. At times we will have a special p.m. recess. Please dress your child according to the weather.
Each Monday, I will send home a Kindergarten Newsletter, which will explain the upcoming week in kindergarten. I will include learning focuses for the week, poems, songs/chants and ideas for reinforcement of skills at home. Enjoy!
Parent Teacher Conferences
Conferences are held twice a year in November and March. A schedule will be sent home for a parent to sign up for a day and time.
Parent/ Teacher Communication
I will make several rounds of phone calls through the year to discuss your child’s progress. I will also email and text if parents would like this as well.
Transition to Kindergarten
It is very important to us for your child to feel comfortable when they start in our kindergarten program. Kindergarteners to be, will have a chance to visit the kindergarten classroom several times before the start of school. We will also have an ORIENTATION for children and parents in April. Also a KINDERGARTEN PICNIC will be held in August. A summer welcoming letter will be sent home at the beginning of August. The preschool children each year have a free play Friday at the end of each month where Ms. Ristow’s class and our kindergarten switch places. This helps our preschoolers become familiar with the kindergarten classroom and teachers.
Your child’s birthday is a special day. If you would like to send in a special treat, this is okay. To comply with NAEYC program standard 5.B.02 “Staff take steps to ensure the safety of food brought from homes, food that comes from home for sharing among the children must be either whole fruits or commercially prepared packaged foods in factory sealed containers.” Food from home that does not comply with this standard will not be accepted. We want to ensure families that the safety of their children is one of our top priorities.
Throughout the school year we will be taking photos of our classroom activities. We will be using these photos for our graduation celebration as well as to create posters of our work and play. The children really enjoy looking at themselves in photos. If any parent should not want their child’s photo taken please let me know as soon as possible.
There will be many different opportunities for homework. These opportunities will include reading, practicing sight words, math skill review and creative projects with writing. Reading folders will be sent home beginning in November. When you encourage your child to complete his/her homework, you are sending a very important message that school is important and you want your child to do the best he/she can!
Children are assessed several times throughout the year. This gives us a full picture of your child’s progress in kindergarten in turn allows us to give your child the proper instruction. Alphabet letter checks, letter sound checks and sight word checks are given several times throughout the year. A reading benchmark assessment will be given three times a year. Assessments will be given in math periodically throughout the year. The fine motor areas are looked at by having students write their names, letters, numbers and cutting skills. Parents will be notified about the results through progress reports, report cards, and conferences about their child’s progress on these areas.
We have an open door policy all parents are welcome to stop by to visit the classroom. If parents need to speak to the teacher on an issue we may need to meet at another time so that it does not take away from instructional time. We would love to have you join us to read a story to the class or assist us in the classroom. All visitors must check in at the office and wear a name tag.
The kindergarten students will attend field trips. Trips will create hands-on learning experiences for students. Parents will be asked to chaperone on both trips.
In class, we will develop together, discuss and review often a set of classroom rules, as well as read the school rules provided by our school-wide PBIS behavior program (Our rules will go home so parents can discuss them with their child) The rules will be posted and referred to often throughout the school year. A Behavior Plan for the class will be determined according to the needs of the class. This will also be shared with the parents.
Children also have the opportunity to earn tickets for exceptionally good behavior. Students may spend their tickets on classroom prizes (including lunch with the principal) or save their tickets and spend them at the Student Council’s School Store (store is open every other month)
As a class it is important that we work together as a team. Together as a class we earn special events for great behavior. When the students get caught being good together or if they receive a compliment we add marbles to a jar. When the jar is full, we will celebrate!
Report cards for kindergarten students will go home three times a year. We will have conferences in the fall and spring to discuss your child’s progress. Any questions, concerns and suggestions in between these times PLEASE feel free to call, email or drop by to visit.
All subject areas are taught in kindergarten: math, reading, language arts, which includes phonics, spelling, phonemic awareness, spelling, rhyming etc. Also included are writing, penmanship, social studies, science, and health.