The ABCs of 1st Grade - by Mrs. Spath



    A is for…Attendance

    Attendance:  Much of our learning will take place together in our classroom.  Please plan on your child attending school everyday unless he or she is sick.  If your child is absent, the class work missed will be sent home for him or her to complete and return.


    B   is for…Backpacks, Birthdays, Breakfast & Book Orders

    Backpacks:  Your child will need a backpack to carry his or her belongings to and from school every day.  Please try to refrain from buying rolling backpacks.  Many children are innocently hurt because of them and they do not fit inside our lockers.

    Birthdays:  If you would like to send in a birthday treat with your child on or near his or her birthday, please feel free to do so.  I have tried to arrange our monthly snack schedules around each child's birthday.

    Breakfast:  Your child will be served breakfast every morning at school.  This is a funded program and costs you nothing.

    Book Orders:  Every month a book order form will be sent home from Scholastic.  This is a great way to purchase books inexpensively, while helping our class earn points towards items.  Usually books take 7-14 days to arrive once the order is placed.


    C   is for…Communication Books & Conferences & the

     Common Core Curriculum

    Communication Books:  Your child will be bringing home a communication book every day.  Please check this book for any notes and important information.  It is important that you sign your child’s communication book each evening and that your child return his or her communication book to school each morning.

    Conferences:  Conferences can be scheduled as needed throughout the school year.  If you would like to schedule a conference please contact me to set-up a date and time.  The first parent teacher conferences are scheduled for November.

    The Common Core Curriculum:  In 2013 LMCS adopted the common core state standards (CCSS).  These standards are being implemented through the common core curriculum.  The CCSS are important because they will help all children learn the same skills.  They create clear expectations for what your child should know and be able to do in key areas:  reading, writing, speaking and listening, language and mathematics.  If you know what these expectations are, then you can work with your child's teacher and help your child prepare.  For further information, please visit


    D   is for…Donations & DIBELS

    Donations:  Throughout the school year we enjoy many celebrations.  We appreciate and enjoy the generous donations asked for and received.

    DIBELS:  The Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS) are a set of procedures and measures for assessing the acquisition of early literacy skills.  They are designed to be short (one minute) fluency measures used to regularly monitor the development of early literacy and early reading skills.  Throughout the school year your child’s literacy skills will be monitored.  We will chart your child’s growth and use these scores to determine progress.  These scores will be shared with you throughout the school year.


     E   is for…Email & Emergency Cards

    Email:  The easiest way to keep in touch with me is through e-mail.  I check my e-mail every day and will get back to you as soon as possible.  My e-mail address at school is  (PLEASE don’t email me important dated information such as a change in dismissal as I cannot guarantee that I will see it before the end of the school day.  Continue to call the elementary office or send in a handwritten note with that kind of time sensitive information.)


    F   is for…Field Trips

    Field Trips:  Our class will be going on a field trip this year.  The field trip will take place in June.  Information will be provided as it is scheduled.


     G   is for…Grading

    Grading:  Not all papers are graded.  Many things done in class are practice and will receive check marks, happy faces, stickers etc.  Please check and keep your child's daily work.  It will be inside your child's communication book. 


     H    is for…Homework

    Your child's homework will be sent home inside a homework folder.  Homework should be returned correct and beautiful.  Please check all of your child’s homework assignments for accuracy and neatness.  Homework is a vital part of the Common Core Curriculum and your involvement is necessary.  Homework is always a reinforcement of what is done in the classroom.  Use your child's daily work as a guide to help him or her with homework.


    I       is for…Illness, Important Papers & Independence

    Illness:  I understand that the decision to keep your child home from school is often a difficult one.  It is important, however, to keep your child home if he or she is sick. Children function more effectively in the classroom when they are healthy.  It also helps everyone to stay healthy if sick children remain at home.

    Important Papers:  If you have any important papers that need to come to school, please send them inside and under the paper clip of your child’s communication book.  I will do the same in sending important papers home.

    Independence:  This is an important skill your child must master to be ready for the next grade level.  Encourage your child to be independent at home by dressing themselves, cutting their own food, wiping and washing their own face, tying their own shoes, cleaning up after themselves, zippering their own coats, etc.  By expecting children to complete the daily tasks expected of them at a school and at home, they will become independent and responsible.


        is for… Jobs

    Jobs:  Classroom jobs help us share responsibility in our classroom.  By sharing our jobs, it helps to build our classroom community.  Throughout the school year each child will assume a variety of responsibilities in our classroom.


     K     is for…Kindness

    Kindness:  Students in our classroom are encouraged and expected to treat all members of our class and others with kindness and respect.  LMCS has a zero tolerance policy for bullying and also for any type of physical contact (hitting, kicking etc).


    L        is for...Lunch

    Lunch:  Our lunch time is 11:30-12:00.  Please be sure to check your child’s account often and make sure it has ample money on it. 


     M  is for…Money

    Money:  When sending money to school, please put it in a labeled envelope inside your child’s communication book so it can be taken to the correct place.


    N   is for…NWEA MAP & Notes


    NWEA MAP:  NWEA MAP stands for Northwest Evaluation Association Measures of Academic Progress.  Your child's academic progress will be monitored throughout the school year using these standardized forms of testing.  Your child's scores will be shared with you throughout the school year.

    Notes:  You must send a note to school if your child is to go home in a different way than his or her normal schedule.  If I do not have a note I cannot let your child go home any other way.  This is to ensure the safety of your child.


     O    is for…Open House

    Open House:  Please plan to attend our Open House.  Your involvement is greatly appreciated and an important component to your child having a successful school year.  Thank you.


        is for…Papers

    Papers:  Be sure to check your child’s communication book and backpack every night for important papers.  Your child’s corrected work should stay at home.   If your child has papers with errors, please correct those mistakes with your child.


    Q   is for…Questions

    Questions:  If at any time you have any questions feel free to contact me.  You may write a note in your child’s communication book.  You may also email me.  I am available to speak on the telephone after 3:00 pm.  My number is 439-4400 ext. 3105.


     R    is for…Reading & Recess

    Reading: While we work very hard on reading at school, it cannot be done without additional support from home.  Students are expected to read at home every night.  Although it is not listed as part of their homework, children benefit from nightly reading.  Encourage your child to bring home a library book to read.  As your child reads, be sure to check that he or she understands what is being read. 

    Recess:  Our recess time is 10:50-11:20.  Unless it is raining or below 20 degrees Fahrenheit, your child will be going outside for recess.  Please be sure your child is dressed appropriately for the weather each day.


     S   is for…School Supplies & Snack

    School Supplies:  School Supply lists are mailed home during the summer.  We suggest you buy extra so that you are able to refill your child’s supplies as needed during the school year.

    Snack:  W e have snack each afternoon.  Your child should bring in a snack and drink each day for our afternoon snack break.


    T   is for…Tardy

    Tardy:  School opens at 8:00 am.  Students should be in their classroom by 8:09.  Unfortunately, students who are tardy miss breakfast and start their morning already behind.


        is for…Understanding Class and School Rules

    Understanding Rules:  The student handbook contains all of the school rules.  Our classroom rules follow along with the school rules.  If your child breaks a rule, he or she will be asked to “flip your card”.  Each child has a set of cards- green, yellow, purple, orange and red.  Each child begins his or her day with a green card.  As your child flips the cards, they go from green to yellow to purple to orange and lastly to red.  A yellow card is a warning.  A purple card is a time out.  An orange card means your child has lost helf of recess and a note inside your child’s communication book will be sent home.  A red card means a phone call will be made home and your child will be given a referral and sent to the principal.


       is for…Volunteers

    Volunteers:  Volunteers will be needed for our class trip and may be needed for other events during the school year.  Volunteers will be selected randomly.


     W    is for…Weather

    Weather:  Please be sure your child is dressed appropriately for the weather.  We are fortunate to live in a place that enjoys four beautiful seasons.  However, this means we need clothes for all four seasons.  Your child should wear a jacket to school on cool fall mornings.  In the winter, your child should wear a warm coat, a hat and mittens.  In order to play in the snow on the playground, your child must wear snow boots and snow pants. 


    X     ,             Y   , and                Z      are for…

    I am eXcited to work with You and Your child this year.  Make sure your child gets plenty of ZZZZZs this year.  First Grade is a big step up and is a busy place.  You will probably find your child exhausted at the end of the day after working hard during the school day.  Setting and keeping a consistent bedtime is a wonderful gift you can give your child.  It will help them be alert and ready to learn each day.