A Message From the Principal
Dear Merryhill Families,
This season of change has brought us such beautiful weather! As we all know that rain is much needed, I cannot help but enjoy the excitement the children have with being able to do so much outdoors!
Change is in the air and in the building of our Merryhill Davis! As you all know, we started the first stage of our upgrades most recently, and the children are doing so well with everything. I want to let you all know that my door is always open, and I am more than happy to talk about any questions you may have during this process. We have so many amazing plans in place for this already wonderful school!
The excitement of change has trickled into the classroom environment, as you may have noticed! After our training, teachers were immediately implementing a number of fun experiences which they were inspired to do from the Professional Development Day. We had a number of special guest speakers give hands on and energetic trainings on “STEM,” “Behavior Management,” and more. The energy has been so contagious!
I also want to encourage you to check out our new website! We will now have the option to customize more items and provide more in depth information — emergency communications, child development articles, more in depth lunch/snack menus, and so much more! I look forward to using this to provide ample communication, and I appreciate your patience with the implementation of the website! Please check out our calendar section of the website, as I have posted the school year events up until June for your prior notice!
In the upcoming month, please do not forget our St. Patrick’s Day Parties (3/17) & Picture Day (3/18). Also, be sure to mark your calendars for April 11th, as our Week of the Young Child Celebration will be one you will not want to miss! All of our teachers are starting the buzz by wearing their themed t-shirts — please feel free to ask them about their shirts!
As always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact me.
National Nutrition Month
Music in our Schools Month
National Red Cross Month
National Irish American Month
- March 2: School Closed: Professional Development
- March 3: Cultural Study: Dr. Seuss’ Birthday
- March 6: Cultural Study: Michaelangelo
- March 9: National Bubble Week
- March 13: In honor of National Pi Day (3.14)
- March 17: St. Patrick’s Day Parties (Sign Up in Class)
- March 18: ALL SCHOOL PICTURE DAY*
*Class Photos, Cap & Gown, Individuals
- March 19: Cultural Study: Ireland
- March 25: Cultural Study: Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival
- March 26: National Manatee Appreciation Day
- March 30: Cultural Study: Vincent Van Gogh
- Save the Dates:
- April 6-10: Scholastic Book Fair
- April 11: WOYC Celebration
- April 23: National Picnic Day — Bring a sack lunch!
From Our Education Department
News From our Education Department
Developing Confident Future Readers
March is National Reading Month, so it is a great time to reinforce how important it is to expose children to books from an early age. We engage all of our students in language and literacy activities every day throughout the school year.
Research has shown that reading aloud to children has a profound influence on their speech development and listening skills. Reading allows children to experience the wondrous world depicted in books, and thrive on the interaction with adults.
Below are age appropriate activities that we implement in our classrooms to get children excited about reading, as well as recommended books to read with your child at home.
INFANTS – Linking sensory and reading experiences
In the classroom: We introduce language and literacy beginning with our infants, by consistently speaking, reading and singing to them. Teachers choose interactive books with bright colors, different textures and pop-up designs to help stimulate infants’ growing sensory awareness.
Books to read at home: Pat the Bunny by Dorothy Kunhardt, Fuzzy Yellow Ducklings by Matthew Van Fleet and Baby Danced the Polka by Karen Beaumont
TODDLERS – Rhyme and repetition
In the classroom: Toddlers enjoy hearing the same books read over and over again, because they are able join in as the stories become more familiar. Teachers read books with rhyme and repetition, such as Goodnight Moon, and vary their voice each time they tell the story. The change in tone gives children a chance to hear different sounds, and encourages them to practice making the sounds themselves.
Books to read at home: All Fall Down by Helen Oxenbury, Where is the Green Sheep by Mem Fox and Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown
BEGINNERS – Engaging the imagination
In the classroom: Around age two, children begin to develop a love for the world of imagination. It’s important to engage children’s imaginations and encourage them to participate in shared reading experiences. A picture walk motivates children to rely on pictorial clues to decipher the story’s plot and make predictions. Before reading the story, the teacher and student flip through the book, and the child is encouraged to make predictions about the characters and plot. The teacher then reads the book aloud with the student. When finished, the child is asked to relate his predictions to the actual outcome of the story. For example, “Now that you know what happened, why was the elephant wearing a tutu?” or “What would you have done if you were the elephant?”
Books to read at home: If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff, Corduroy by Don Freeman or Bark, George by Jules Feiffer
INTERMEDIATES – Exploring the wider world
In the classroom: As our Intermediates are introduced to the Citizens of the World component of our curriculum, they read about different places, cultures and traditions in books. Books help children understand and enjoy learning about the diversity of human experience. During circle time for example, we may read a story about children living in another country, in a different type of house and wearing different types of clothes. Afterward, the teacher connects the story back to what the children know by asking, “What does your house look like?” and “Who lives in your house with you?”
Books to read at home: Abuela by Arthur Dorros, So Much by Trish Cooke and On Mother’s Lap by Ann Scott
PRE-K/PRE-K 2 – Nonfiction Adventures
In the classroom: Children are naturally fascinated by the lives of real people and the world around them. Our teachers cultivate this fascination by exposing students to nonfiction books. For example, the class may read both a fiction and nonfiction book about animals. Afterward, they are encouraged to compare and contrast the two books and discuss what was accurate in the fiction book.
Books to read at home: Stellaluna by Janell Cannon (fiction) and Bat Loves the Night by Nicola Davies (non-fiction)
By experiencing a literacy-rich environment, both at school and at home, we instill a love of reading and provide the foundation for our students to become successful, confident readers in elementary school and beyond.
– Lauren Starnes, PhD- Director of Early Childhood Education
News from our Classrooms
Infant Room: Ms. Naty & Ms. Mari
Our baby sign for the month of March is “brother” & “sister”, we will be practicing these signs during the day for the children to practice. The first week of March is Dr. Seuss’ Birthday. We will read to the children books like “take me to the zoo” and “green eggs and ham”. Friendly reminder: please remember our school is closed on Monday, March 2nd for Professional Development Day. On the second week of March we have national bubble week! We will play with bubbles and let the children work with soapy water. The third week of March is Cultural Study of Ireland, the children can wear green on the 17th!
We are happy to welcome Miriam to our class! We are pleased to have her, she has adapted very well with the classroom teachers and all of her new friends. Sidney moved up to the toddler class! He is very happy with his new teachers and friends and is enjoying more time outside and joining in on all of the activities!
Our circle time is very exciting part of our day for the children. We sing songs every day, the children recognize these songs and clap along! We also sing in Spanish, the children always pay close attention whenever there is singing involved. We read to them short stories as they sit listening to us. This is the time we practice our baby sign as well. We hope everyone has a great month of March. Adios!
Toddler Room: Ms. Raquel, Ms. Ally, Ms. Jacky, & Ms. Savanah
What a fabulous and fun month of February we had! We are very excited to enter the month of March with all of our toddler friends. In March, we will continue to expand our vocabulary by adding new words. We will use many tools such as books, toys, flashcards, and our environment to help us achieve this goal. We will encourage the children to repeat our words and sounds and to imitate our actions so that they can better learn. We will also be increasing our sign language vocabulary by introducing new word-cards during our circle time interaction. The children learn best through repetition and imitation.
Our calendar is full for the month of March, as we try to incorporate a number of new spring fun! We will discuss various “air” related topics, including bubbles, airplanes, and more! Our dramatic play center is a Bird’s Nest! The children have had a blast getting to play in this center. We will continue our month with cultural studies of Ireland and Japan, with each having special events in this month!
We have our school pictures on Wednesday, March 18th. Please be sure to bring your child ready for pictures this day, and we will change them out of the desired outfit as soon as we have completed their pictures! We will try to take them as early as possible, to assure the best picture results!
We look forward to a fun month as our toddlers grow and learn at such a rapid pace!
Beginners 1 Room: Ms. Li & Ms. Francis
First we would like to start off with welcoming Cora Markley to our classroom! She moved up from the toddler room in February, and we are very excited she has joined our class. We would also like to wish all of the March birthdays this month a very happy one. We hope you guys have a great day on your birthday’s kids!
We have a couple dates to remember this month, including March 3, when we will be celebrating Dr. Seuss’ Birthday. Our class will be having a St. Patrick’s Day party on Tuesday, March 17th if you would like to contribute some snacks. We will be trying lots of green food on this day and learning about all things that are the color green. The first day of spring is arrives on the 20th, we are excited to begin our flower planting projects!
This month we will be reading a couple new books that include “Clifford’s Birthday Party”, “Gilberto and the Wind”, “Rabbits and Raindrops and Kite Flying”, along with plenty of Dr. Seuss books! The students will be exploring with many activities that correlate with our books and Links to Learning skills for the month. Some activities which include making our own kites! Also, we will make raindrops, go on a bug hunt, and play games of Simon Says- to help sharpen are listening skills. Each morning and afternoon we will be practicing our greetings in both English and Spanish.
We hope you all have a wonderful March, we are very excited to see our little friends grow and learn!
Beginners 2 Room: Ms. Jalisha & Ms. Lyssa
February was such a lovely month we are sad to see it go, but excited to see how much our friends have grown! This month our friends have shown their independents and showing they are ready for more challenges. We have been focusing on Zoo animals. We read quite a few books with different kinds of animals our friends really enjoyed “Dear Zoo” very much! We also have been practicing with letters of certain animals, Snakes caught the children’s attention most! Beginners II friends are doing so well at recognizing letters from the alphabet after learning about Zoo animals. This month we did many new activities to broaden our little friend’s minds. To incorporate Black History month we focused on different colors of the rainbow and we mixed red, yellow, black and white paints in the right combination and got a very pretty shade of brown. We read a few stories as well, such as “The colors of us” and “The crayon box that talked”. We had a very fun and exciting month!
We are really excited about those who have just been recently potty trained. Bravo! We will focus a week this month to potty training activities, changing it up a bit to have a week of Potty Power! We are looking forward to showing our friends that using a potty is a great thing and they will receive special rewards from their teachers. The goal this month is to develop an understanding and importance of using the potty.
The days are getting longer and lighter, and the Lucky month of March is here! We have so many fun and exciting things coming our way! This Month we will be reading “Gilberto and the Wind”, “Little Cloud”, and “Kite Flying”. To incorporate these books we will focus on the weather changes, and learning about how all the different weather changes help our plants & crops grow. We will also start plating our own flowers this month and see how the new weather change will help. While taking care of our new plants we will sing songs like “Grow” & “Mr. Sun”. Let’s see if our friends beautiful voices will help as well.
Intermediates Room: Ms. Kayla & Ms. Linda
Happy March Intermediate families, we hope you all had a great February! As some of you know we have had some changes in our Intermediate class this past month. First we welcomed Ms. Kayla from the Beginner 1 classroom into our class as an Intermediate teacher. The children that have had Ms. Kayla as a teacher in the past, and are enjoying having her as a teacher again. The children that are not as familiar are enjoying getting to know Ms. Kayla on a daily basis. We have also welcomed a new student in our class named Natalie who is having a great time getting to know her new friends and teachers!
This month we will be reading two fun new stories in our classroom and focusing our lesson and activities around these stories. Our first story is Isla, a story about a girl and her grandmother, who use their imagination to visit the Caribbean where the grandmother grew up as a young girl. The children will use their imagination to travel to a place they wish to go on vacation and then draw a picture about where they went and what they did on their vacation. The children will also construct a postcard from where they visit and send it to you parents through the mail. The next story we will read is The Dinosaur in My Backyard. This story is about a little boy who describes how a dinosaur used to live in his back yard thousands of years before. The children will search for toy dinosaurs buried in dirt, as they find the dinosaurs we will encourage the children to sort by color and size. After the children sort the dinosaurs we will graph the results and have the children practice reading a graph.
If you have not seen our new In Space dramatic center please come check it out and explore another planet with your children! We will do many more fun activities during the month focused round these two books. We will also celebrate some fun days and weeks in March, including Bubble week March 9th-13th and St. Patrick’s Day on March 17th. Be on the lookout for a sign-up sheet for our party to celebrate
St. Patrick’s Day. School pictures are Wednesday, March 18th! Please send your child dressed to impress, and we will certainly make any wardrobe changes necessary AFTER the pictures are completed.
We are excited for another fun filled learning month with our intermediate friends! If you have any questions about the new changes or how your child is doing please feel free to come and talk to us.
Pre-K 1 Room: Ms. Stacy & Ms. Cristina
We had a fantastic time in February celebrating Valentine’s Day, Mardi Gras and Chinese New Year! We have also completed our 2nd month of our new Share Day schedule, and were introduced to many interesting Potato People with creative names. We will be creating a book with pictures of potato people along with the stories our friends invented about them for you all to see.
Many of you have noticed a few new faces in the classroom. Please join us in welcoming our new friends, Mahika and Anne to our school. Also Quentin has transitioned from Intermediates II to Pre-K1!
In March, we will celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday. We have many Seuss-tastic activities planned for the week! The class will have a “One Fish, Two Fish” goldfish count. We will also take a survey and chart our favorite Dr. Seuss book. For a Cat in the Hat sensory activity, we will create snow using cornstarch and shaving cream. We will also make our own version of Dr. Seuss’ ABC book.
March 9th is the beginning of National Bubble Week and we will be doing lots of sensory and science experiments with bubbles. March 17th is St Patrick’s day and we will be doing lots of fun Irish themed projects and will be learning all about the country of Ireland. We have already started learning some Irish songs in class. We will have a green themed party on St Patrick’s day and we will watch a short segment from the River-Dance DVD so they can see what Irish dancing looks like.
In math we will be doing more with adding and subtracting. They will count a group of objects and when some are taken away they will count again to get the new total. We will also continue to work on number recognition of numbers 20-50.
We have had fun pretending our dramatic play center is a TV station but now for March we would like to set it up to look like a veterinarian clinic and they can bring in stuffed animals to use as patients. If you have anything that would be of use for our Vet Clinic we would appreciate it!
Pre-K2 Room: Ms. Jill
Our Links to Learning Spanish curriculum this month will introduce new Marzo (March) vocabulary: Mini poster was sent home in your child’s Links to Learning folders at the end of January. We will be focusing on learning how to refer to areas of the home, as well as reviewing months of the year and items found in our home.
In mathematics we will be concentrating on counting by fives and tens, as well as counting to 100. We will also continue to add groups together and subtract objects to obtain a total. Something new the students have been recently introduced to are solving and creating number stories. We are having a lot of fun with this, and the children are developing an understanding for the concept amazingly fast!
We will be focused on phonics this month, identifying sounds, blending sounds and segmenting out sounds as well. Our Letter Buddies curriculum we have been working with is a great way for children to practice isolating and grouping letter sounds.
Some new vocabulary words will be introduced to the children this month. We use vocabulary words in many ways, including: practicing printing, counting syllable sounds and vowels. Our vocabulary words this month are: March, Spring, Leprechaun, Gold, Rainbow, Shamrock and Green.
The children will be introduced to some self-help skills from our Social Emotional curriculum , such as learning how to distinguish and state the problem, as well as ideas on how to solve it.
We will be having a Green Celebration on Tuesday, March 17th.Come in your “green” attire! Best dressed will have a special award awaiting them. Sign up sheet will be posted closer to the date, if you would like to contribute a “green” treat.