Picture Schedule for Class Pictures

SAY CHEESE!!!  In this week’s Thursday/Friday folder, an order form for class pictures was sent home. Class pictures are when the class lines up together, takes a photo, and when it comes back to you has the names of the teacher and children in the class. They make a great keepsake from preschool!  Here’s the schedule:

Wednesday AM 4/29 8:35 – 11:05 Class pictures
Brandy MWF
Tara MWF
April MWF
Christina MWF
Alyssa M-Th AM
Angela M-Th AM

Wednesday PM 4/29 12:30 – 1:30 Class pictures
Alyssa PM
Angela PM
Jess PM
April PM

Thursday AM 4/30 8:35 – 11:05 Class pictures
Brandy T/Th
Nicky M-Th AM
Eliza M-Th AM
Tara T/Th
April T/Th
Christina T/Th
Jess M-Th AM

Thursday PM 4/30 12:30 – 1:50 Class pictures
Eliza PM
Tara PM
Nicky PM
Christina PM

Big Ideas of Early Mathematics — Spatial Reasoning

THIS MONTH’S BIG IDEA: Spatial Relationships –Mapping the World Around Us

BIG IDEA #1 (Spatial Relationships): Relationships between objects and places can be described with mathematical precision.

We need to ensure children have lots of time to explore materials for building, such as blocks, through free exploration. Magnetic tiles, wooden blocks, stacking cups, etc. can all be explored. It’s especially helpful to discuss how the different materials have different qualities and that some might be better or worse for building and designing things. What can you do at home?

  • Introduce challenges:
    • Here are 10 blocks. How many different ways can you use these 10 blocks to build something?
    • Here are 15 toilet paper tubes. What can you build with these? What else can you build with these?
  • Encourage and model how we document things we complete and design:
    • Encourage children to sketch their plans and make drawings of things they complete
    • As a parent, you can take a picture with your cell phone or other camera so they can describe it to someone who wasn’t there when they made it.

BIG IDEA #2 (Spatial Relationships): Our own experiences of space and 2-dimensional representations of space reflect a point of view.

Because children see the world from their own point of view, their language is going to reflect an added element of complexity – their own perspective or point of view. “When we are in a scenario ourselves, we become part of the spatial relationships, and then position and location are always described relative to ourselves. Young children don’t need to be able to explain this, but they need lots of experience talking about how things appear from their own point of view, and hearing how they appear from someone else’s (p. 137, Erikson Institute).” This takes time and can’t be taught or forced, but helping them to develop language will support them as they develop this at their own pace.  What can you do at home?

  • Maps a great way to get children to understand the connection between their 3-dimensional world and a 2-dimensional representation. Next time you visit a place (like a zoo, a pumpkin patch, an exhibit…) with a map, take a few moments to support the development of perspective.
  • Play positional games, such as “Where is it?” “Hide and Seek” or “Where’s My Bone?”
    • Have your child hide an object, like a stuffed animal. Then have them use words to tell you where to look (It’s near the doorway. It’s on the opposite wall!). If they need help, ask questions, such as, “Is it closer to the corner or to the rug?” As they become more fluent with positional words, encourage them to be more precise (Is it behind the chair or beneath it?)
  • Encourage movement songs and games:
    • Play the Hokey-Pokey, Captain May I?, or Simon Says!
      • Helpful parenting hints when doing this:
  1. Don’t force a child to sing along or chant until they are ready.
  2. Go slow at first.
  3. Just before and after each round, use gestures to remind your child about left and right and other positional terms (in, out, around, under, over)

BIG IDEA #3 (Spatial Relationships): Spatial relationships can be visualized and manipulated mentally.

Doing puzzles is a great way to help your child develop spatial relationships. Multi-piece puzzles, pattern blocks, and tangrams can help to build complexity. Start simple, and move on to harder and more complex shapes. What can you do at home?

  • Work puzzles
  • Draw pictures
  • Solve mazes
  • Build with blocks, tinker toys, etc.
  • Build with clay, blocks, toothpicks, popsicle sticks, cereal boxes, etc.
  • Play at the playground on climbing structures

Colorado Preschool Program information for ’15-’16

Colorado Preschool Program (CPP) Enrollment

In 1988, the Colorado General Assembly created the Colorado Preschool Program (CPP) to serve the young children in Colorado who face educational challenges due to family, economic or developmental concerns. CPP provides free high quality preschool to eligible children through participating school districts and partnering community sites. There is no fee for children who qualify.


Children are funded to attend preschool for a minimum of 10 hours per week during the school year, therefore they must be in preschool 4-days a week. Preschool programs meet quality standards and limit class size to sixteen children with an adult-to-child ratios of one-to-eight. Support services for families are part of the program and families are involved as partners in their child’s education experience. Students will attend preschool Monday through Thursday, half day mornings or afternoons.

Eligibility Requirements

Students must be four years of age on or before October 1st of the school year they attend. Parents/Guardians must complete the CPP Application and Tuition Assistance Form, found in the Preschool Registration Packet. You can obtain this from the Spark! Discovery Preschool office. You can also obtain the application from the CPP Office at 303-702-7815.

Parents/Guardians must also schedule an appointment for a CPP screening to determine eligibility.

  • Screening lasts approximately 45 minutes
  • Arrive 10 minutes early to fill out a parent questionnaire
  • Child must be accompanied by the parent applying for preschool
  • Birth Certificate

To schedule a screening, call 303-702-7815 for appointment at the CPP Office at SVVSD.  Spark Discovery Preschool staff do not conduct the screenings, approval, placement, or communication of/for children applying for CPP.  This is done with staff from Student Services, in the CPP office.  You are welcome to call our office to check if we sent the application to the CPP office; once we do this, via FAX, the CPP staff take over the process.

Spring Break To Do list

Spring Break Activity Ideas

Read, read, read – Don’t forget to fill out your student’s reading log. If you need your MyOn login information, email me and I will get it for you.

Play math games –Try counting or adding/subtracting dominoes dots, snacks, anything! Students regularly participate in basic math operations in the classroom. When given a story context students can exhibit great number reasoning skills. Try a something like – If you, your brother, the dog and the cat play in the backyard, how many people will be outside?

Play I Spy with comparison vocabulary – “I spy something larger than…”, “I spy something wider than…”

Practice the Alphabet – It is important that students going to kindergarten next year know their letter names and sounds. There are many fun activities you can do with your student to help them with letter knowledge. Check out some of the great ideas from Hands on as We Grow – http://handsonaswegrow.com/50-alphabet-activities/ listed below:

Sing your way through an alphabet maze

Paint over mystery letters – Write letters in white crayon on a white paper and watercolor paint over it!

Water an alphabet garden written in sidewalk chalk. – Say the letter sound and have them find the letter and water it.

Make Memories by Talking – Talk about interesting things that happened or will happen. Talk about stories – characters, plot, new vocabulary.  Act out a scene or play dolls or cars together.  Let your student help you cook or complete a task to encourage listening and following directions.  Use puppets to interact and encourage playful language.

Wrap Around Childcare Update

Imaginarium Illuminators

Spring has Sprung!! The teachers are very glad it has and we hope that you are enjoying it as well. We would first like to Thank You for all of the support given to us by the parents.  Our themes for April are: “Bugs”, “Spring Break”, ”Space”, and “Earth Week”.

There are a few housekeeping items we want to remind you about. First off, please be sure to check your parent cubby as well as your child’s art cubby on a regular basis. These are located near the sign-in/out sheets and usually have items to be taken home in them. Thank you to those who do check it already.

Please also check the spare clothes in your child’s backpack to make sure that they are for the right weather. We also ask that you add a couple of outfits since we are outside more and there is a greater chance of puddles with Springtime weather.

A second friendly reminder is naptime items should be taken home at the end of your child’s week to be washed and returned on Monday. The only exception is for those children who attend afternoon preschool and only rest with us once a week. They do need their blankets too, but their items will only be sent home once per month for washing. Thank you very much for all your help.

That’s all for now. We hope you are all having a happy, healthy, safe, and enjoyable 2015!!

Lots of thanks:  Miss Kathie, Miss AJ, Miss Tori, Miss Yobie, Miss Amber, Miss Grace, Mr. Erik, Mr. Calvin, Miss Easter, Mr. Blake and Miss Meghan

Health Office Update


Our health office is in need of clothing of any size, especially for girls. Please bring any items to donate to the front office. We need…

-Underwear (Preferably new), pants, shirts (t-shirt or long-sleeve)

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our

Health Clerk, Emily Stradling at stradling_emily@svvsd.org.

Attendance Report February, 2015

Below is a summary of the number of tardies and the number of absences for the month from last month through February for the whole school.

February 2015 January 2015 December 2014 November 2014 October 2014 September 2014
Tardies: 64 71 64 36 55 139
Absences 366 300 204 156 236 211

Because of this school’s commitment to children, we are concerned when a child misses part of a school day for any reason. Missing more than 10% of any school year, for any reason, whether excused or unexcused, can negatively impact a child’s learning. Since preschoolers attend preschool at most 4 days a week, they should not miss more than 1-5 sessions per school year. We are aware there were many illnesses in January and February and would expect to see attendance improve as we move toward the end of the school year.

Preschool attendance matters for a number of important reasons. We’ve got a unique opportunity here at Spark! Discovery Preschool—as we host a one-of-a-kind STEM program, which is gaining state and national attention. Our staff members pour their energy into making each classroom an exciting place for learning, play, and exploration. We want your child to have as much exposure and access to this wonderful program. Also, preschool is a great time to start to build a habit of good attendance. Young children with poor attendance in preschool also lose out on valuable learning time and if chronic absence continues into kindergarten, it can diminish academic achievement.

In order to support good attendance, here are a few ideas and tips:

  • Class starts at 8:30 am in the morning session and 12:25 pm in the afternoon session. Families should come 5-10 minutes early to line up for check-in. If late, families will have to complete checking by entering the front of the building, signing in, and then walking the child to class to be signed in.
  • Set a regular bedtime and a morning routine for children in the home, ensuring they get 9-11 hours of sleep
  • Lay out clothes, backpacks, and coats the night before school to save time in the morning.
  • Don’t let your child stay home unless he/she is truly sick. Keep in mind complaints of a stomachache or headache can sometimes be a sign of anxiety and not a reason to stay home.
  • Develop a back-up plan for getting to school if something comes up. Call on a family member, a family friend, a neighbor, or another trusted parent from our school.
  • Families should avoid extended vacations that require your child to miss school. Try to line up vacations with the school’s schedule. The same goes for doctor’s appointments for children or grown ups.
  • If there are siblings in the family, and only one child is sick, the other other siblings should attend school.

ATTENDANCE Rates by class: Below is the average attendance rate for each individual class. It is our goal to have each class at 95% attendance each month. As you can see, we had 1 class, Tara’s Monday-Wednesday-Friday class meet this goal. Congratulations to this class!

Attendance Rate for Feb. ‘16 Attendance Rate for Jan. ‘15 Attendance Rate for Dec ’14
Brandy Ray T/Th AM 91% 88% 86%
Brandy Ray MWF AM 93% 95% 94%
Nicky Willis M-Th AM 89% 90% 91%
Nicky Willis M-Th PM 84% 92% 88%
Eliza Kraham M-Th AM 89% 91% 92%
Eliza Kraham M-Th PM 92% 92% 90%
Tara McGirl T/Th AM 85% 87% 83%
Tara McGirl MWF AM 95% 90% 76%
Tara McGirl M-Th PM 92% 93% 91%
Alyssa Rehder M-Th AM 90% 83% 91%
Alyssa Rehder M-Th PM 84% 88% 88%
Becky Zemlicka T/Th AM 83% 87% 85%
Becky Zemlicka MWF AM 92% 92% 94%
Becky Zemlicka M-Th PM 93% 94% 91%
Angela Zinn M-Th AM 89% 89% 83%
Angela Zinn M-Th PM 92% 92% 92%
Christina Siebels T/Th AM 83% 92% 98%
Christina Siebels MWF AM 90% 95% 96%
Christina Siebels M-Th PM 88% 92% 93%
Jess Harbison M-Th AM 76% 68% 56%
Jess Harbison M-Th PM 91% 95% 88%

Attendance Recognition — Trimester 2

 Go team Spark! Thank you parents and families!


images-9100% Attendance, Trimester 2–We’d like to recognize children with 100% attendance during the second trimester (in random order): 

Alex D. Avery Abigail K Makaylah Cristian
Landon Michelle Alexander K James Charlotte
Ethan R Eden Wyatt Lex Deegan
Jaxson Mia Kiley Guy Melody
Sydney Jesus H. Delaney Gavin Lilly

 95% Attendance, Trimester 2 — We’d like to recognize children with 95% attendance during the second trimester (in random order):

Carla Connor C Alexandria Madyson Liliana F.
Payton Elena Trenton Alexander R. Abigale
Caiden Hattie Paden Genessis Alexander E.
McKinley Brooklyn Joseph Matthew Connor R.
Kaylen Anthony W. Dominic Charles Owen
William Jared Ruby Abigail L. Addilyn
Dax Nelani Hailey W. Annelise Anthony C.
Cassidy Peyton Keiran Levi Zyris
Ginny Blake S. Caleb Analiya Aiden
Weston Vanessa Colt Christopher John
Cale Kimberly Trinity

 On-Time/All-the-Time, Trimester 2:  We’d like to recognize children who were on-time, all the time during the second trimester (in random order):

Georgia Lyla Zion Jacob B. Drake
Alex D. Aedan Aiden G. Anali Jillyen
Ruby Joseph Aneiyah Aidenn Aylina
Sydney Maria Carla Leighana Owen
Jay Julian Alfredo Zyris Rigoverto
Jacob S. Tiana Anthony C. McKinley Trevor
Hadley AnnaMarie Lex Connor R. Mackenzie
Emmett B. Vidanna Jared Kiley Alexis
Wyatt K. Liam M. Adrian Ashton Melina

Responsible, STEM Profile, April 2015

RESPONSIBLE IS OUR STEM PROFILE OF THE MONTH. We define Responsible in our conversations with children as: I take care of doing my part. I make good choices. I can be trusted to do what is right.”


Preschoolers want to play an important role in the home, like they see you doing, which will serve to develop a responsible child, teen, and adult.   How can responsibility be developed in the home?

  1. Choose age-appropriate tasks. Most preschoolers will not be able to follow through with “go clean up your room,” but they can handle, “Put your shoes in the closet.”
  1. Show and tell. Show your child what it means to be responsible by being a good role model with your own belongings. Keep things tidy, put your car keys where they go, and put your shoes away too. When you give your child their own small tasks to do, shoe them exactly how to do the task (repeatedly, day after day, for a while). Say, “It’s time to ____. Look how I am going to ____. Do you want to help me do that?” If children need continual demonstrations, scale back.
  1. First things first. Teach children that work comes before play. Say, “Sure, I want to go to the park, but we have to clean up toys first.” Be firm and matter-of-fact about it, admitting you prefer the fun too, but you have to balance being responsible.
  1. Establish a routine. If parents set a routine, children will learn responsible habits, such as putting their dirty clothes away, putting toys away, etc.
  1. Phrase it in a Positive Way. Instead of falling into the “If you don’t, then you won’t” trap, instead say, “When you’ve done ___, then you get to ___.”
  1. Pour on the praise. Specific, positive praise will reinforce that you appreciate his or her efforts. “You did so well putting Garfield’s food right in his bowl,” after he/she feeds the family dog.

(Paraphrased/Adapted from: “The Responsible Child: How to Teach Responsibility,” from The BabyCenter.com, http://www.babycenter.com/0_the-responsible-child-how-to-teach-responsibility_65726.bc, 3/29/15)