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St. Justin Martyr School
PASSING THE TORCH OF CATHOLIC LEARNING, LEADING, AND SERVING
TRANSITIONAL KINDERGARTEN THROUGH 8TH GRADE

1st Grade

 

    

I graduated from Saint Mary’s College in Notre Dame, IN with a double major in Elementary Education and Psychology.  I also have a Masters of Science in Reading and a Reading Specialist credential.  This is my 17th year of teaching, and all of my 17 years have been here at St. Justin Martyr School.  I am married and I have two  children both of whom attend St. Justin Martyr School.

Classroom Rules
  1. Follow directions
  2. Keep your hands, feet, and objects to yourself
  3. Respect everyone
  4. Help others
Rewards

A daily color chart is used to keep track of your child’s behavior.  Each child will start the day with his/her clothespin on the green: ready to learn section.  As students make good choices, they will move their clips up one section at a time to yellow: good day, orange: great job, or red: outstanding.

If your child ends the day on green, yellow, orange, or red he/she will get a stamp on his/her monthly calendar indicating to you that he/she had a good day!  Please initial your child’s monthly calendar daily, so I know that you are aware of your child’s behavior.

If your child is already on red and is asked to clip up, he/she will get a ticket each time that happens.  Students can also earn tickets for random great behavior, good deeds, and/or a healthy snack.  Once or twice a month, students will have the opportunity to trade in their tickets for prizes from the treasure box.  

Class Reward

To show students how important it is to work together and cooperate to achieve a common goal, the class can earn points daily toward a class reward.  When the class works together to meet expectations, they will earn a point.  As the class earns a point, they will move the Cat up one place on his Hat.  Once the Cat moves up to the top of his Hat, the class will receive a reward of extra free time in the classroom or outside.  

 

Consequences

If students make bad choices, they will move their clips down one section at a time to blue: think about it, purple: teacher’s choice, or pink: parent contact.  A warning will be given before he/she is asked to move his/her clip down.  Students have until pack-up time to move their clip up.  If your child ends his/her day on blue, purple, or pink he/she will not receive a stamp, but will receive a letter to indicate the reason.  There is a key on the back of the calendar to help you understand what the letter means.  A color coordinated note will also be sent home to describe the reason for the color in more detail.

Please note that for a serious misbehavior, I reserve the right to clip the student down to which ever color is most appropriate.

Student Learning Assessment (SLA) grades for Responsible Behavior are partially determined by the color that your child is on at the end of the day.  The Responsible Behavior grade has 5 categories: service, respect, responsibility, self-discipline, and honesty.  Each day students have the opportunity to earn 1 point in each category.  If students end the day on a “not good” color, he/she will lose point(s) for self-discipline and honesty.  The points in the other categories are determined by the behavior that students display daily and throughout the week.  At the end of each week, students can earn up to 25 points, 5 points in each category.  These points will be entered weekly on Sycamore.

Classroom Assignments

Various individual assignments will be assigned each day.  This work is to be done independently or with assistance if needed.  If, by the work collection time, some work is still not complete, the student will place that work in his/her “stay at school” folder.  If you see incomplete work that is attached to the Friday Work Slip, please make sure your child completes the work and turns it in by the following Tuesday.

Homework

Starting next Monday, your child will receive a weekly homework contract that is to be worked on for about 30 minutes daily, and turned in each Friday.  The contract is to be signed and all written work should be stapled to the back.  If there is any missing work the contract will be marked “Incomplete”.  If your child needs an extra contract, please let me know.  If your child is ill, the contract is to be returned within one week after returning to school.  Contracts that are not turned in on Friday, are expected to be turned in the following Monday.  Students will be given one exception per Trimester for incomplete or late contracts.  The second time a contract is incomplete or late, a point will be subtracted from the student’s weekly commitment AND leadership scores.  

Homework contracts are partially used to determine your child’s Work Habits/Study Skills grade.  The Work Habits/Study Skills grade has 5 categories: commitment, fairness, leadership, courtesy, and kindness.  Each day students have the opportunity to earn 1 point in each category.  The points in the other categories will be determined by the habits and skills that students display daily and throughout the week.  At the end of each week, students can earn up to 25 points, 5 points in each category.  These points will be entered weekly on Sycamore.  Another part of your child’s homework is the Accelerated Reading program (AR).  Each child must read, or have someone read to him/her at home daily.  After the child has finished a book, he/she will then take a comprehension test at school (AR Test).  When children pass their AR Test, they earn points toward their AR Goal.  Each child’s AR Goal and reading level will be determined and sent home soon.  Children can select books from the classroom library, school library, public library, and/or from their home (as long as they are AR books).  A letter explaining the directions for the Accelerated Reading program will be sent home with a reading log next week.  

 

Grading Criteria

Your child’s grades are based on a combination of oral and written work, and tests.  I will use the following grading scale to determine your child’s grades.

 

Outstanding (O): 90%-100%

Satisfactory (S): 70%-89.99%

Needs Improvement (N): 0%-69.99%

 

Most assignments will be marked with the percentage that was earned and the letter that correlates to the percentage.  Your child’s grades are determined by averaging the percentages together in each subject.  

Stars will be given on assignments that are completed for credit only.  For example there will be some assignments that are completed together or in groups that will be given credit for being completed.  On these assignments students will earn either a star, or star- based on how well the assignment was completed.  

Parent/Teacher Communication

I will send home notes on a regular basis in your child’s Take-Home folder.  The right side of the folder is for papers that either stay in the folder (such as your child’s monthly behavior calendar and homework contract) or papers that are to be turned in (such as notes for me or the office).  The left side of the folder is for papers that are being sent or returned to you.  Please check your child’s folder daily and look through all papers on both sides of the folder.  Read all notes and review all papers that are on the left side, and please initial your child’s behavior calendar in the box for that day.  

Each Friday I will send home a stack of your child’s work that has been corrected.  I will attach a form called the Friday Work Slip to the stack which will indicate whether or not all of the work in the stack has been completed.  Please review all the assignments in the stack (they are then yours to keep unless they still need to be finished or completed), have your child complete any incomplete work, sign, and return the form (along with any work that was incomplete) by Tuesday.  As a mom, I understand that weekends are busy and family time, so I will offer Monday as a grace day and allow the form and/or work to be turned in by Tuesday.  

If you have any questions or concerns for me, please do not hesitate to contact me.  The best way to communicate with me is through email.  I check my email daily and I will respond to you within 24 hours.  My email address is mrs.rabago@sjm-k8.com.  You can also send me a note in your child’s folder, or call the school.  

Absences/Make-Up Work

If your child is going to be absent for any reason, please call the school to notify us.  Your child will be responsible for making up any missed work due to absence.  Missed assignments should be requested through the school office (you can do this when you call the absence in).  If you do not request your child’s work, I will collect it and give it to your child when he/she returns.  The homework contract from the week your child is absent is due within a week.  If you know in advance that your child will be absent, please let me know and I will do my best to get you the work that will be missed.  Any tests that are missed will be made-up within a day or two of your child’s return to school.  In the case of any absence, according to state law, your child will not be admitted back into class without a written excuse (even if you already called the school office to indicate your child’s absence).  

Birthdays

The class and I would love to help celebrate your child’s birthday!  Your child will receive a birthday badge, a postcard, and the class and I will sing “Happy Birthday”.  If you would like to send in treats to help celebrate, please let me know the day before.  The class will get to enjoy the treat at morning recess.  Please make sure the treat is PEANUT FREE, and individualized so that it is easy to pass out.  

 

Dress Code

Please follow the dress code in the Parent-Student Handbook.  Your child has P.E. on Tuesday and Thursday (unless otherwise specified) and should therefore wear his/her P.E. uniform on those days.  The monthly school calendar and the weekly IT will specify if your child should wear Full Uniform Dress for certain occasions.  Every Friday we will attend school Mass, and your child will need to wear Full Uniform Dress on those days.  Please remind your child to always have his/her shirt tucked in.  Make sure that all of your child’s clothing is clearly marked with his/her name.  Clothing that is not marked and not claimed, will be put in the lost and found in the daycare room.  Your child also needs to be able to tie his/her shoes.  

 

Curriculum

Here are some of the skills and concepts that your child will be learning this year.  

Religion:  Jesus Teaches Us About God’s Love, We Are Followers of Jesus, We Belong to the Church, We Celebrate and Live Our Faith
Language Arts:  Phonics, memory words, vocabulary, building background knowledge, comprehension, pattern words, grammar, and writing skills.
Math:  Addition and Subtraction Concepts, Data and Graphing, Numbers and Patterns to 100, Geometry, Fractions, and Probability, Measurement, Time and Calendar, and Two-Digit Addition and Subtraction
Science:  Structure, function, and information processing of plants and animals.  Space Systems: Patterns and Cycles.  Waves: Light and Sound.  We will also be completing STEM tasks in which students will solve problems based in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math processes.   
Social Studies:  School, Neighborhood, Town and Country, City and Suburb, and All Around the World, Directions, and Maps.

 

Snacks, Lunch and Water

Please pack a healthy snack and lunch for your child.  Send your child’s snack with your child’s name or number clearly marked on it.  Your child will earn a ticket each day that he/she has a healthy snack.  Please send your child’s lunch with him/her each day.  Late delivery is for emergencies only.  

I recommend that you send water with your child.  If you send a water bottle with your child, please label it with your child’s name.  

 

Dismissal

If someone other than you or the usual person, is picking up your child from school, please make sure I get a note informing me.  This person will need to bring a picture ID when he/she comes to pick up your child. Thank you in advance for cooperating with SJM on this issue, it is to ensure the safety of your child.

Money

If you send any form of money to school with your child, please put it in an envelope that is clearly marked with your child’s name, grade, and what the money is for.

Curriculum Summary:
Religion:  Jesus Teaches Us About God’s Love, We Are Followers of Jesus, We Belong to the Church, We Celebrate and Live Our Faith

Language Arts:  Phonics, memory words, vocabulary, building background knowledge, comprehension, critical thinking skills, pattern words, grammar, and writing skills.

Math:  Addition and Subtraction Concepts, Data and Graphing, Numbers and Patterns to 100, Geometry, Fractions, and Probability, Measurement, Time and Calendar, and Two-Digit Addition and Subtraction

Science:  Plants, animals, grouping objects, sound, light, and heat, the earth, weather, the sky, the senses, growing and changing, and health.

Social Studies:  Holidays, School, Town and Country, City and Suburb, and All Around the World

Tech use:

I use Apple TV and my projector to display children’s literature, Discovery Streaming videos, and pictures to enhance learning.  I also have a set of Ipads that my students use daily as part of a learning center.