Principal's Message 2.14.20

Principal's Message 2.14.20


No School Monday, January 17th - President's Day

Valentine's Parties

Our Valentine's parties were a great success today.  Thank you to the PTO for supplying the treats for this afternoon's parties.  Thank you to all the room parents for planning and conducting the fun activities held in classrooms today.  We couldn't have these parties without your help.

Thank You, PTO!

Thank you to the PTO for providing the staff today with sweets & a cocoa table!  The staff appreciates your kindness and support!

Spring Conferences are Collaborative Conferences!  

Collaborative conferences means that your child will be leading the conference.  The purpose of collaborative conferences is for educators, students and families to discuss, reflect and celebrate student work, and for families to experience school through their child's eyes.  Students have been working hard to prepare for the conference, and we are excited for you to learn about your child’s progress directly from your child!   

Teachers will be available in the room as guides and will be available to answer student questions or elaborate on a point a student is making, but we ask that all participants respect that this is the student’s opportunity to lead the conference by sharing progress and reflections about their own learning. 

Please read below to learn specific information about how collaborative conferences will be structured at the elementary level. 


Grades EC-1st Grade 

Families will sign-up for a 15-minute conference. One student/family partnership will be in the room at a time.  The conference will begin with your child presenting his/her current progress, reflections, celebrations and areas for continued growth.  The classroom teacher will be at the table with the student, but the student will lead the conference.   

Teachers will be available to facilitate and assist in answering specific questions. 


Grades 2nd-5th Grade

Families will sign-up for a 30 minute conference.  Three family/student partnerships may be in the room at one time.  Student/Family partnerships will sit in a private space to engage in the conference.  The conference will begin with your child presenting his/her current progress, reflections, celebrations and areas for continued growth. Teachers will be available to facilitate and can answer brief questions at the conclusion of the student portion.  

What is the Role of Families during Collaborative Conferences?

  • Provide reinforcement, encouragement and praise

  • Listen and ask questions 

  • Help students look realistically at quality of work

  • Facilitate student’s self-reflection and goal setting

  • Be a partner in learning

  • See school through their student’s eyes

Questions Families Can Ask During the Collaborative Conference

  • What is your favorite piece of work? Why? 

  • Describe your favorite activities or subjects.

  • What experiences at school do you find the most exciting?

  • Are there experiences that frustrate you, if so why?

  • What goals have you set for yourself for this spring?

  • How can I help you at home?

Spring Conferences Sign Up

Sign up forms will be sent on Tuesday, February 18th at approximately 3:15pm.  Please check your email inbox for sign up link and directions.  

Kids Heart Challenge!

Prairie’s Kids Heart Challenge was a huge success! Paper envelopes with donations can be turned in on Tuesday and online donations will close on Wednesday. Thank you to all of our Prairie Pumas for being Heart Heros!

What’s happening in Exploration Lab?  Follow us on Twitter @mrsspivack

  • First graders have been coding their own cartoons using a program called Scratch Jr. 

  • Second Graders in Ms. Heuer’s and Mrs. Desai’s class have been learning to code our Dash/Dot robots to perform various tasks such as knock/knock jokes and helping Dash to become a police officer. Students in Mrs. Stewart’s and Ms. Elfering’s class have been building their own robots using legos and then coding their robots to perform various tasks. 

  • Third graders in Ms. Weil’s class have been coding our Dash/Dot robots to perform various tasks. Students in Mrs. Souza and Ms. Ramont’s class are using littlebits to learn about circuits and electricity. They chose to build either a self-driving car or an art machine. 

  • Fourth graders are learning about 3D printing!

  • Fifth graders have been engineering their own chariots. They will then code the chariots around a track for the ultimate fifth-grade race!

Culture Survey for Students

"The Guiding Coalition for Interculturalism (GCI) is looking to include student voice in the weekly staff blog!  We want to hear from students about their culture and why it’s special. Click here to access a short survey that your child can complete if they are interested, and their answers may appear in the staff newsletter!"

PTO News

Don't forget to place your orders for Pizza Bingo; pre-Orders for Pizza Bingo ends 2/20. $5 dollar meal deal which includes 1 slice of pizza, 1 water and 2 bingo cards. $2 for each additional slice of pizza, $1 per water and $2 dollars per bingo card. Meal deals will be $8 dollars at the door.

General Health Questions and Procedures

This is the language from the student handbook that is signed by all families that attend school in District 96. I would like to direct your attention toward the fever portion of this, as it is a tangible guideline.

Children with temperatures of 100 degrees or above, sneezing or runny noses, sore or irritated eyes, or severe abdominal cramps should not be in school. A child with a temperature of 100 degrees or more should stay home for 24 hours after his or her temperature returns to normal without the use of fever-reducing medications. Parents should notify the school whenever there is confirmation of a communicable or contagious illness of any sort. A doctor's note stating that the child may return to school is needed when a child has been absent from school for five or more consecutive days.