Dear Families, Parents and Guardians,
Welcome to the opening days of the Early Childhood Discovery and Design Magnet School!
With our new Magnet status comes many exciting opportunities and changes. But in many ways, we will continue to serve this community in the traditional ways so many have come to depend upon. Our school hours are the same as last year, and we will still offer our students dance and piano keyboard classes as we have in years gone by. We’re still focused exclusively on early childhood education and partnering with PS 208 to insure a smooth transition to the upper elementary grades 3-5.
You will also notice some great new changes at our school this year. The teachers and I have been working all summer to write challenging units of study. We’ve added new curricula this year, including a math program called Investigations and an engineering program for first and second grades called Engineering is Elementary. All grades, including pre-K will be working with Duplo, Lego, and Lego Robotics as part of the engineering theme to help develop motor skills and think like engineers.
We’ll continue to partner with Tufts University and Bank Street College this year among others to bring our students high quality and challenging learning experiences based on both traditional early childhood practices and the latest in child-friendly technology.
Here’s what you can expect in the coming month.
- You will receive a series of invitations to curriculum meeting with your child’s teacher. Please come. Your interest and involvement in school sends a powerful message to your children and makes a big difference in their school success.
- Later in the month you will receive a curriculum newsletter that will describe in detail the work your child will be engaged in for the coming seven weeks. Read it carefully and ask your child about the work he or she is doing in school. If you have any questions, call the classroom teacher or me and get answers. We welcome and encourage your questions.
- You will receive a report on your child’s reading level by the first week of October with specific suggestions about the kinds of work you can do with your child at home to support their reading and writing progress. Please read it carefully and do what you can at home to insure your child’s progress.
- Every night, your child will be assigned reading homework. Sit down with your child and read or listen. If you can’t sit down, set a timer and find a quiet spot for your child to read on his or her own. Show your support by asking questions about the book. Don’t doubt for a second that this is the most important work we can do to help children become confident and skillful readers.
- If your child is late or absent, expect a call from us. When the call comes, know that we are here to support your child to develop good school habits. When children are late or absent, they miss out on opportunities to learn that can’t be replaced.
- Throughout the year, you can expect a variety of opportunities to get involved, whether it’s during the school day or in the early evening. We offer language and computer classes for parents and guardians, parenting groups, curriculum support workshops. We gratefully accept parent volunteer help in classrooms, bookrooms, library and cafeteria.
At the Early Childhood Discovery and Design Magnet School (ECDD), we know the importance of the home-school connection and we’re committed to supporting each child and every family.
I’m looking forward to a challenging and rewarding year. Thank you so much for choosing PS 185 for your child’s early education.
Jane Murphy, Principal
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