February 2020

Dear Parents,
“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.” (1John 3:1a) This is one of my favorite verses on love in the Bible. It is such a comfort to know that we can be a child of God even after we have reached adulthood!

On Thursday, February 13th, we will have a Valentine’s Day celebration. We are doing this on Thursday so we can include the three day friends. I will send home a list of all the children’s names in our class. Please be sure to send a valentine to every child in the class, if you plan to send in valentines. Please use this as writing practice, and have your child write the names on the cards. I know this can take time, so try to start early and have your child do as much as they can.

We just started a shorter rest time in kindergarten to allow for more math practice. This will also help the children prepare for first grade, when they will not have rest time anymore. Instead of going to the other room and using mats, the children sit at their seats. They can put their head down, listen to the music, or look at a book. Instead of 25-30 minutes, we are now resting 15-20 minutes.

I hope the report cards you received were helpful in understanding your child’s progress in my class. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions. Your child will get another report card at the end of the school year. We are offering conferences again in March. A sign up genius will be sent out. We are busy learning a lot in Kindergarten!

As the students get more comfortable with reading aloud, I would like to give them the opportunity to read to the class. When your child is prepared to read a short book, have them bring it in. After I listen to them and if they are ready, I will give them time to share with the class. This can be a very exciting event for a child to read to the whole class.

On Monday, February 17th, there will be no school in honor of President’s Day. I will be reading books about George Washington and Abraham Lincoln and discussing their importance in the history of our nation.

Re-registration information will be sent home shortly. Please prayerfully consider sending your child to Bethany for first grade. I would love to see them in the hallway next year as first graders! I always tell the children that if I have to share them next year, I am glad that it is with Mrs. McClure. She is a fabulous teacher and the children will love her class!

On Tuesday, March 10th, kindergarten will be going to the Dutch Apple Dinner Theater for a field trip. Parents and other special adults are invited to attend. I am letting you know now, so you can make arrangements if you wish to join us. A buffet lunch is included in the cost of $17. If you wish to attend please send in $17 cash or check (made out to BCS) by February 11th. We have a limited amount of seats available. The cost for the children is already covered by tuition.

We are in need of more napkins. The children are going through the 100 piece puzzles so quickly. If anyone finds a 150 or 200 piece puzzle you would like to donate, we could give it a try!
Don’t forget to send in peanut butter and jelly in plastic containers to help feed hungry children in the Philadelphia area! Thank you in advance for your generosity!

Sincerely,
Mrs. Dowd

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January 2020

Dear Parents,

I hope all of you had a great Christmas break and that the children are ready to jump back into learning! As we begin a new calendar year it is the perfect time to encourage the children to always do their best. The verse from Colossians 3:17 is a good encouragement for a new year. “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”

I want to say a big thank you to all the parents who helped to make our Christmas gingerbread house activity and party a fun time for our class. What a pleasure it is to see the creativity of children! I would also like to thank you for the many thoughtful gifts I received from the children. God must have smiled at the excitement the children had about giving gifts. It really is a greater blessing to give than to receive. I will really enjoy my gift card to Wholly Grounds coffee shop that the class gave me. Thank you!!
There will be no school on Monday, January 20th, in honor of Martin Luther King. We will learn about his contributions to our country.

Kindergarten report cards for the first half of the year should be available online on January 24th. The second report will be available in June.

On Tuesday, January 14th we will have our visitors from Fair Hill Nature Center come to teach us about hibernation. The children will participate in a short play and then enjoy some interactive centers.

Happy New Year!

Sincerely,
Mrs. Dowd

December 2019

Dear Parents,
Happy December to all of you! In the midst of the holiday busyness, I hope that you find time to think about and thank God for the greatest gift ever given. In John 3:16, we read “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

What a pleasure it was to meet with you and talk about the progress your child is making. I am always interested in hearing what the children are saying about school. As a kindergarten teacher, I delight in hearing that your children are enjoying their time in the classroom.

For Bible class this month I will be reading One Wintry Night. This book reviews many of our previous lessons and helps us understand why we need Christmas.

We are invited to participate in the Holiday Shop, where the children may purchase inexpensive gifts to give to family and friends for Christmas. Kindergarten will go on the afternoon of Thursday, December 5th. You may send in the envelopes ahead of time and I will keep them in a safe place.

Our class party will be on Friday, December 20th.Parents are invited and encouraged to attend! Younger siblings are also welcome. We will start in the church at 8:45 with our Christmas Program. We will enjoy decorating gingerbread houses together after the program. We will be asking you to send in something specific for this activity. Please watch for more information about this in the next week. Please be sure to send a wrapped book for a girl if you have a daughter, or a book for a boy if you have a son in my class. This is for our gift exchange. Keep the cost at about $5.00 and have your child write who it is from on the package. You may send these in ahead of time.

Kindergarten has filled up the warm fuzzy jar again!! We will have our Warm Fuzzy Party on Tuesday, December 3rd, in the afternoon. They may wear pajamas that day.

Coming up in January will be our visit from Fair Hill Nature Center. The children will participate in activities to learn about hibernation.

Have a peaceful December and a Merry Christmas!

Sincerely,
Mrs. Dowd

November 2019

Dear Parents,

Psalms 107:1 “O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.” As Thanksgiving approaches let us remember to give thanks to our great God for our many blessings!

I am thankful to have your children in my class this year and to have the opportunity to teach them to read! It is so much fun to listen to the children gain confidence as they are reading their books. This class is very good at finding sight words in any books they are looking at! Thank you for your diligent efforts at home to complete the homework and partner with me in the learning process.

I am looking forward to talking with you about the wonderful things your children are doing n school! Conferences will be held on November 25th and 26th , with afternoon and evening time slots. Look for the email with information about how to sign up for your conferences. The students will be dismissed at 12:30 on both days and no aftercare will be provided. Please send in a hearty snack on Monday, since we will not have lunch at school.

On Tuesday, November 26th we will be joining kinder 4 and preschool for a Thanksgiving Feast. We will make special hats and attend the festivities dressed like pilgrims. Parents are invited and encouraged to attend. Please arrive by 11:10 and the singing will begin at 11:15. At 11:30 we will start enjoying our feast. An email will be sent out to give you opportunities to sign up to help prepare for our feast.

Kindergarten and Kinder 4 will be starting to work on a joint Christmas presentation that will take place on the Friday morning before Christmas break. We would love for you to attend this event if possible. Following the Christmas program we will decorate gingerbread houses and do a book exchange. Girls bring a wrapped book for a girl and boys should bring a wrapped book for a boy. We ask that you keep the cost of the book at about $5.00.

As you have already heard, we are participating in a food drive to help our local Neighborhood Services. Kindergarten is asked to bring in cans of cranberry sauce or fruit. Please mark the cans with a B for boy or a G for girl. This is a competition and the children get very excited watching the lines of food grow down our hallways!

I am looking forward to our rescheduled field trip to Milburn Orchard on Tuesday, November 12th. Don’t forget to dress the children in warm clothes if the weather is chilly. Hopefully, we will have a sunny day to enjoy our time at the orchard.

My artistic little students could use some more pipsqueak markers as we are wearing out the ones we have. We are also running low on napkins. Thank you for your generosity!

You will notice that kindergarten does not receive a report card in November. I will send a report card in January and at the end of the year.

I hope your children are enjoying their time in kindergarten. It is amazing how much they have learned and matured already. They make me smile every day with the precious things they do and say!

Sincerely,
Mrs. Dowd

October 2019

Dear Parents,

The first month of school has gone by so quickly! The children are beginning to adjust to the kindergarten routine and seem to enjoy our time together. I look forward to seeing their smiles each day!

I always look forward to hearing the children read. Thank you for your efforts at home to practice the reading. The reading books should be returned daily until I sign it and write “Finished” on the back. I might not read with each group every day, so keep practicing even if I don’t get to put a sticker on the back. They will get their stickers when I meet with their group. Be sure to look over the reading guide at the front so you know how to help your child. Have your child practice the “words at work” page located at the back. Blue words are to be read by the adult, unless your child is up for more of a challenge. Be sure to have them point to the words as they are learning to read.

We are looking forward to spending the morning with our grandparents on Friday, October 4th. Dismissal is at 12:30 and there is no aftercare. It is a very special time for the children and the grandparents. Please be sure to send in permission slips if your child is to be dismissed with a grandparent.

Picture Day is coming on Wednesday, October 9th! Even if you are not ordering pictures we still need all students to be photographed for our class picture. More information will be sent home soon.

Friday October 18th is another special Bethany event. Please join us for the annual fundraising banquet. Please RSVP if you are planning to use the free babysitting service. It is always a lovely evening and I hope to see many kindergarten parents there! If you let me know ahead of time that you are coming, I will do my best to save you a seat at my table!

Please work with your children at home on these very important skills: holding a pencil correctly, opening packages of food, putting on jackets and tying shoes with a double knot. We encourage the children to try on their own before they ask for help. They get very excited about demonstrating independence in these areas.

Our warm fuzzy container is getting full! We will be planning a special activity as a reward. I will let you know when the time comes. Your children are working hard to earn warm fuzzies. They are gaining self-control and learning to be good listeners. Way to go Kindergarten!

Thank you for your diligence and patience with the math homework! I know the directions can be tedious or unclear, at times. If your student gets a star they did a super job! A smile means that they demonstrated a good understanding of the topic.

I am looking forward to our upcoming field trip to Milburn Orchard on Tuesday, October 22nd. I will send home permission slips shortly. You are invited to attend with your child. Your child’s ticket is already paid for. If you wish to attend, I will have a place to indicate on the permission slip that you wish to go. You will need to send $6 dollars cash or check made out to Bethany Christian School for any additional tickets.

Don’t hesitate to send an email or a note if you have a question or concern. Let’s continue to have a great year!
Sincerely,

Mrs. Dowd

August and September 2019
Dear Parents,

I would like to welcome you to kindergarten at Bethany Christian School. My name is Trish Dowd. I began my teaching career as a third grade teacher here at Bethany. I taught four years and then took an eight year break to stay home with my children. My two sons both graduated from Bethany. My oldest son is a freshman at Pennsylvania College of Technology and the younger one is a sophomore at Avon Grove High School. This will be my 12th year teaching kindergarten and it is a blessing to be able to serve God here at Bethany Christian School!

I am delighted that another year is about to begin and I look forward to spending time with your child. Kindergarten is an exciting time in a child’s life and I am blessed to be a part of that. God has called me to this very special ministry and I will do my best to show the love of Jesus to your child and help them to succeed in this school year.

Every day your child will bring home a white envelope with their work and any important information. Please check the envelope daily and return it to school the following day. This has been an effective form of communication between home and school. You do not need to sign the envelope.

Please check our school website, http://www.bethanychristian.org regularly, for important information. I have a blog with information regarding our class that you can access through the school website. Click “About Us”, then go to “Teachers and Faculty”. The next step is to click on “Elementary Faculty” and look for Mrs. Dowd. Finally, click where you see the word “blog”. Please sign up on the blog for email update reminders. Let me know if you do not have internet access, so I can send you a paper copy of posted material. I will have our class Scholastic code, Bible Memory assignments, important dates, specials schedule and a monthly newsletter posted.

I would like to highlight a few upcoming events. Our very special Grandparent’s Day will be on Friday, October 4th. Dismissal is at 12:30. Our annual Bethany Banquet will be held here at the school on Friday, October 18th. It is always a delightful evening and I would love to see you there! This will also be a 12:30 dismissal day. More information will be sent home in the coming weeks regarding these very special activities.

I look forward to working with you and hope you feel free to communicate regularly with me. If you were unable to attend the kindergarten open house, please arrange a time to speak with me. Our school number is (610)998-0877 and my email address is tdowd@bethanychristian.org . Do not hesitate to call or email if you have any questions. I check my email daily and will respond to calls or emails in a timely manner. I pray that this year will be a joyful and exciting year in Kindergarten!

Sincerely,

Mrs. Dowd

May 2019

Dear Parents,

It’s hard to believe that this is the last full month of school for the 2018-2019 schoolyear! What a pleasure it has been to work with you and your child this year. It is my prayer that they are not only academically prepared for first grade, but also have grown closer to God and have a deeper understanding of who He is and how much He loves each of us.

Thank you for all your work with your children on Bible verses this year. 1 Peter 5:7 will be the last Bible memory homework for this year. We will spend the month of May learning the Books of the Bible. This will not be graded or tested. I will be teaching the children songs to help them remember the order. I hope this will help the children become more familiar and able to find verses in the Bible.

We are looking forward to our Bulldog Run on Friday, May 17th. I encourage you to come and participate in the festivities. It really is a fun day to be at Bethany Christian School! Thank you for all your efforts at gathering addresses and your generosity with our class basket for the silent auction. Please pray for a sunny day! All Bulldog Run awards will be given out at the end of the day. Children must be present to receive an award. Run Club awards will be given on Field Day, which is June 5th.

On Friday May 24th, parents are invited to come and join our class as we attend a play that the 2nd and 3rd graders are performing for us. This will begin at 2:00 in the afternoon.

We are planning a picnic for all kindergarteners and their families on Friday, June 7th at the Little Britain Park. This is our special end of the year celebration. It will be the last day of school. Three day students are being invited to join us. We will need parents to help organize food and games for this event. Please let me know asap if you are willing to help plan this end of the year celebration.

The last couple of years we have eaten grilled hot dogs, chips, fruit, veggies, drinks, and some type of dessert. We typically assign each family to bring or send in something. We also need parents who are willing to grill hot dogs or heat them up in crockpots, set up the food table and clean up the area after the picnic.

The games are another highlight of this celebration. Before lunch, we play games such as a sack race, water balloons, candy scramble, relay races, and any other games our organizers come up with. Please feel free to share your suggestions. After lunch, the children usually go home with their parents, and this concludes our day. If a parent cannot attend, their child may take the bus back to BCS with us and be dismissed from the school at 12:30.

We could use a few more rolls of paper towels in our classroom if anyone is willing to donate them.

Sincerely,
Mrs. Dowd