Beginning of the Year Letter
Posted on September 5, 2019

Dear Families,

Our year has begun! We are already having a great time learning about each other and making ourselves into a new community!

Below, we have addressed a few important items. If you have other questions, please let us know. Keep this letter handy, as you may want to refer to it later. This letter is also on our class website and you can find it there all year long.

Class Website

Check it out often! Maybe even every day. There will be new images from the classroom updated regularly, a calendar of events, and descriptions of what we are working on (written, as much as possible, by your children). The address is

The All-Important Blue Home Folder

Please look for notices and your child’s homework assignment every day.  We will start assigning homework on Monday, September 9.  Usually, your child’s homework assignment will be in the home folder, Monday through Thursday. Checking the folder every day keeps you up-to-date with what is happening in class and keeps you informed about school issues.


We start the year by reading at home for at least twenty minutes.  Children can be read to or do the reading themselves (out loud or not - as long as they are comfortable).  Sometimes, families share the reading - taking turns reading out loud. The important thing is that children are absorbed in books every day for a sustained period of time.

Soon we will add about 10 minutes of writing, math or other work to the daily reading. All of this work will be directly related to the work that was done in class that day; as such, if your child has missed school, it is often difficult to make up the homework. However, you can always do 20 minutes of reading together.

School Supplies

As we mentioned in our summer letter, we have gotten everything your child will need for the classroom.  We ask that each family reimburse us for these costs. We ask that you chip in $75 for your child’s share.  If this amount is burdensome, please pay what makes sense for your family. If you can contribute more, it is always welcome.  You can make checks out to Greta Schwerner or pay by Venmo to Andrew’s account:


We will need snack for next week.  If you are able to do that, please let us know.  After that, we will have a sign-up sheet for snacks out next week during our 10-minute meetings.  Thank you so much for providing healthy snacks for our class. We eat snack every day at about 9:45 a.m.  You may bring in the weeks’ snacks all at once or daily – whichever is easier for you. This year, because of a very serious allergy, we are requesting only gluten-free snacks. Good choices are rice crackers, GF chips, popcorn, fruit, cheese, GF dry cereal, carrots and other easy to eat veggies.  


Please know that you are in no way obligated to celebrate birthdays; it is up to your family to decide what is best. If your child is excited to celebrate with her/his classmates, feel free to bring in a treat. Please remember that our classroom must stay gluten-free. Also please do not bring in candy, party favors, candles or balloons.  We tend to gather in a circle first and then we share a snack while listening to a read aloud. Usually, we will celebrate birthdays at 1:40 but please confirm a time with us in advance. You are welcome to join us or simply send in something for the class to share.

Water Bottles

As we do not have a sink or drinking fountain in the classroom and would like children to drink water as often as they’d like without lots of excursions to the hallway drinking fountain, we ask that you send in a water bottle for your child to keep at school and to bring on class trips.