May 4, 2020
Dear Northwood Families,
Welcome to May! I hope you and your families have taken some time to step outside and enjoy the flowers and greening of Spring.
This letter includes:
- Continuity of Learning Plan
- Student Desk/Cubby Materials Pick-up - Last Call!
- Kindergarten Registration for 2020-21
- Northwood Student Council Spirit Week
- Special Considerations & Class Placement Process
- Mindfulness and Character Trait of the Month
- Upcoming Events & Activities
Continuity of Learning Plan 2020
I hope you have had the opportunity to read the Mercer Island School District Continuity of Learning Plan 2020 that was shared with families last week. Our district leadership created this plan to inform and support families and staff as we have responded to guidance from OSPI and transitioned our learning model during school closures and Governor Inslee’s Stay at Home orders. Please review this document for guidance and information about supporting your learners at home, attendance, and grading in a remote school environment. This resource can be located on our MISD website here:
Student Desk/Cubby Materials Pick-up - Last Call!
Thanks to all the families who came to Northwood to pick-up their child(ren)’s learning materials last week. We know that some families were unable to pick up these materials at the scheduled time. To try to get these materials back in the hands of our students, we have scheduled another opportunity for families to collect their child(ren)’s bag of materials: Friday, May 8 @ 1:00-2:00pm. As a reminder, these material bags are different from the learning packets that some families are picking up every week. These material bags were put together by your child’s teacher and paraprofessionals and contain items that were left in student desks or cubbies and materials that will continue to help move learning forward. All safety precautions (gloves, masks, social distancing) were followed while packing these materials.
Please follow the process outlined below:
Families will use our Car Loop to make the pick up:
- Write/type your child(ren)'s “LAST name, FIRST name” on a piece of paper
- EXAMPLE: Batliner-Gillette, Aimee
- TAPE the paper to your PASSENGER SIDE window
- Pick up is from 1:00-2:00pm
- Like our normal Car Loop routine, line up in the Car Loop line and make sure you have the paper with your child’s last name on it taped on your passenger window (the Car Loop lane is off 86th Street in the front parking lot, by the Front Office)
- Drive through the car loop line and a staff member will read the sign on your passenger window, retrieve your student materials bag and bring them to your car (please roll your passenger window down so they can hand the bag off while you remain in your car)
- You’re finished! Drive away safely so the next parent can get their materials.
If you have any questions about this procedure, please contact Laura Bowers at Laura.Bowers@mercerislandschools.org.
Kindergarten Registration for 2020-21
Do you have a child who will start Kindergarten in the fall? Do you know others who have a child who will start Kindergarten in the fall? If so, we encourage you to register these children for Kindergarten as soon as possible. In order to staff our schools with high-quality teachers, we need to know how many young learners will be joining our school community. If you have already registered your soon-to-be Kindergartner, thank you! Registration is online and can be found on the MISD website here: https://www.mercerislandschools.org/kindergarten
Northwood Student Council Spirit Week
Our Northwood Student Council has been meeting remotely to consider ways to support Northwood students and the Mercer Island community. They have created a plan for Spirit Week to lift student spirits and keep us connected through our remote learning tools. The students selected the week of May 18-22 for Spirit Week, with the following daily schedule:
- Monday - Kind Message day
- Tuesday - Team Jersey day
- Wednesday - Pet day
- Thursday - Favorite Color day
- Friday - Northwood Attire / Northwood Colors day
We hope you will support your child in participating in those spirit days which suit your family, and we recognize not all days will be a match for all children. (For example, I do not have any Team Jerseys or team sporting wear, so Tuesday won’t be my thing. But, I can send a Kind Message on Monday, and I do have a great big dog, so I’m on board for Wednesday.) Thanks, Student Council!
Special Considerations & Class Placement Process
At this time of year, we begin to look forward to the next school year, which includes considering future class placements for all our students. Our teachers and staff engage in a very thoughtful and student-centered approach to building classrooms. Please see the attached letter for more detail about our class placement process. If you have additional information about your child that you would like us to consider, you may submit a Special Considerations form through the link found in this online letter. The deadline for this optional submission is May 15.
Mindfulness and Character Trait of the Month
Mindfulness instruction and practice continues for our Northwood students. Miss Harnish, one of our Mindfulness Leaders, is creating weekly mindfulness video lessons for our students, and our Learning Grids may also include Mindfulness practice. We encourage our students to use what they know about Mindfulness and engage in this practice while learning at home. This practice helps students develop self-regulation skills and provides them with tools that can help them be present with whatever tasks they are engaged in, help them maintain or regain focus, and help them manage emotions, which can lead to more positive choices. As part of your child’s remote learning day, we invite you to join our school-wide Mindfulness Minute practice, too. Pause, focus on your breathing, and be present each day; you might be surprised at how good it makes you feel! Ask your child to show you what they know about Mindfulness.
In May, our Focus Character Trait is Generosity. Please see our Northwood Monthly Mindfulness and Character Traits webpage for more information about this character trait.
Upcoming Events & Activities
Although we have transitioned to a remote learning environment, we are working across the community to consider ways to engage families in certain events remotely. Thanks to all who have helped us think creatively about how to stay connected through technology.
- May 4 @ 5:00pm MISD Webinar: Racing Ahead or Falling Behind, via Zoom Webinar: https://mercerislandschools.zoom.us/s/91646169282
- May 4-8: Teacher and Staff Appreciation Week
- May 6 @ 2:30-4:00pm: Northwood’s Virtual Spring into Kindergarten Event (by appointment for newly registered 2020-21 Kindergartners) - Zoom Session
- May 7 @ 2:00pm: Incoming Kindergarten PTA Q&A Event - Zoom Session (invitation and link provided to registered 2020-21 Kindergartners)
- May 18-22: Northwood Student Council Spirit Week
- May 20 @ 9:30am - PTA General Membership Meeting - Zoom Session
- May 21 @ 9:30am - Northwood Parent Advisory Council Meeting - Zoom Session
- May 22: REMOTE SCHOOL IN SESSION - Scheduled Weather Make-up Day
- May 25: No School - Memorial Day
Wishing you all a healthy and safe springtime.
Principal | Northwood Elementary School