Our students and teachers are a busy bunch! On this page we’ll recount some of our recent successes as well as post important news and reminders for our students, parents, and community. Be sure to stop back often to stay in the loop!

Surviving Test Stress

Standardized tests are extremely important in your child’s education. Schools use information gained from these tests to guide instruction, and it can be a helpful indicator when grouping students in classes. Educators stress the importance of these tests to students and parents, as school labels are based upon their outcomes.

Every parent wants his/her child to succeed. As testing season rolls around, there are many things you can do as a parent to help your child be successful on his/her assessments.

  • Avoid putting any undue stress on your child. Testing windows are only a few weeks out of the school year. If possible, avoid any major family changes during this time.
  • Make every effort to have your child at school and on time during testing.
  • Please do not send a sick child to school simply for the sake of the test, and do not schedule voluntary doctor or dental appointments during testing weeks. Students always do better on major tests the first time they are given, rather than in a make-up environment.
  • Ensure your child gets plenty of rest the night before the test. Enough said.
  • Give your child a quality, low-sugar breakfast on testing days. Even if he/she doesn’t typically eat breakfast, encourage him/her to do so. A sugar-rich breakfast will cause your child’s energy to peak quickly and then crash, leaving him/her tired too soon.

Testing season is just a short blip of the school year, but the results can affect your child for all of the next school year and beyond. Encourage your child to do his/her best and to take his/her time on the tests. Check your child’s backpack or the school website for more information and exact testing dates. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher.

A Pack of Picky Eaters

If children's nutrition is a sore topic in your household, you're not alone. Many parents worry about what their children eat and don't eat. However, most kids get plenty of variety and nutrition in their diets over the course of a week. Until your child's food preferences mature, consider these tips for preventing mealtime battles.

Respect your child's appetite — or lack of one
If your child isn't hungry, don't force a meal or snack. Likewise, don't bribe or force your child to eat certain foods or clean his or her plate. Serve small portions to avoid overwhelming your child, and give him or her the opportunity to independently ask for more.

Stick to the routine
Serve meals and snacks at about the same times every day. Provide juice or milk with the food, and offer water between meals and snacks. Allowing your child to fill up on juice or milk throughout the day might decrease his or her appetite for meals.

Be patient with new foods
Your child might need repeated exposure to a new food before he or she takes the first bite. Encourage your child by talking about a food's color, shape, aroma and texture, not whether or not it tastes good. Serve new foods along with your child's favorite foods.

Make it fun
Serve broccoli and other veggies with a favorite dip or sauce. Serve a variety of brightly colored foods. Add chopped broccoli or green peppers to spaghetti sauce, top cereal with fruit slices, or mix grated zucchini and carrots into casseroles and soups.

Recruit your child's help
At the grocery store, ask your child to help you select fruits, vegetables, and other healthy foods. At home, encourage your child to help you rinse veggies, stir batter, or set the table.

Minimize distractions
Turn off the television and other electronic gadgets during meals. This will help your child focus on eating. Keep in mind that television advertising might also encourage your child to desire sugary foods.

Don't offer dessert as a reward
Withholding dessert sends the message that dessert is the best food, which might only increase your child's desire for sweets. You might select one or two nights a week as dessert nights, and skip dessert the rest of the week or redefine dessert as fruit, yogurt, or other healthy choices.

Don't be a short-order cook
Preparing a separate meal for your child after he or she rejects the original meal might promote picky eating. Encourage your child to stay at the table for the designated mealtime even if he or she doesn't eat. If you're concerned that picky eating is compromising your child's growth and development, consult your child's doctor. In the meantime, remember that your child's eating habits won't likely change overnight, but the small steps you take each day can help promote a lifetime of healthy eating.