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May News

Message from the Principal

      We would like to express our sincere thanks to all of our families who helped make our “Week of the Young Child” celebration a huge success! Our Playday was so much fun, as were the Music Around the World Festivals, Outdoor Art Studio, and Park Days. We ended our week with our traditional St. Jude’s Trike-a-Thon. Thank you for your donations to such a worthy cause. And a big thank you for bringing in all the necessary items for this very special week, but most importantly your support. We truly appreciate all you do and we are looking forward to next year when we once again designate this special week to celebrate children!

     The month of May will be just as busy!   We will kick off the month with Mother’s Day Tea Parties, Teacher Appreciation Week, and our butterfly release. Lots of springtime fun in May!

     We will also host an Open House on Thursday, May 21st during our late afternoon hours. If you have friends that would like to register for our upcoming school year, please let them know about our Open House. We have just a few spots left for our new school year.

Happy Spring!
Lisa Norris – Principal

Important Dates

5/5  Cinco de Mayo Celebration

5/4-8  Teacher Appreciation Week

5/8  Mother’s Day Tea Parties  
            3:30 – Intermediate – Pre-K2
            4:00 – Infants/Todds/Beg.

5/21  Open House 5-7 pm  

5/25  Memorial Day – School Closed

Our Butterfly Release is to be announced. Mother Nature will let us know the day!


Teacher Appreciation Week

Our teachers are an essential part of your child’s life. They are there to comfort, care for, and teach them while you are away from them during the day. During the week of May 4-8, you can show your appreciation to our teachers and staff. We will have precut stars on the front counter for you to write a special note, and then we will tape them on the classroom doors. Let our teachers know how important they are to you and your child!

Mother’s Day

We all know that being a Mom can often be the most difficult job in the world, yet is by far the most rewarding. To honor all of our very special mothers, each of our classes will be busy preparing something special for
each of you.  Our Mother’s Day Tea Parties will be held on Friday, May 8th.
3:30 – Intermediates- Pre-K2
4:00 – Infants/Toddlers/Beginners
Please arrive early, because parking is limited.

Caterpillars to Butterflies

As our caterpillars make their cocoons, we will soon see them emerge as beautiful butterflies. We will be learning about the life cycle of the butterfly this upcoming month. Only Mother Nature will know the true date of our release. Please check with your child’s teacher for updates!


Open House

If you have friends that are interested in inquiring about our school, please pass the word that we will be open until 7 pm on Thursday, May 21st for an Open House!

Remember, if you refer a family to Merryhill, you could earn up to one free week of tuition, so tell all your friends to join us


Email Reminders

Every Monday I send out an email, “This Week at Merryhill”. It is a list of reminders of what is happening at your child’s school for the week. Please make sure that you are checking this each week so you won’t miss out on all of our wonderful activities. If you are not receiving it, please check with the office regarding your correct email address. We want everyone to stay informed!

Big Truck Event
at Sprouts Shopping Center
Merryhill will be hosting a booth at the Big Truck Event on Wednesday, May 20th from 11am-4pm. This is just another opportunity for your friends to learn more about Merryhill and enjoy an afternoon with the “Big Trucks” sponsored by the City of Elk Grove in celebration of National Public Works Week.
Tell your friends to stop by.

As a reminder, Merryhill will be CLOSED on Monday, May 25th in observance of Memorial Day.  Have a great 3-day weekend!

 News from the Education Department

Ed Pic
Developing Writing Skills in Young Children
From Crayons to Concepts

  • In the early preschool years, writing starts with practicing fine motor skills and progresses to include concepts such as vocabulary, sentence structure and inventive spelling. Our curriculum builds the foundation for writing beginning with our infants. Our teachers not only instruct students how to write, but they also help instill a love of writing and self-expression.
  • Below are activities we implement in our classrooms to get children excited about writing, as well as fun activities to try with your child at home.


  • In the classroom: Our infants and toddlers practice picking up and placing objects into containers, building hand strength and coordination.
  • At-home activity: Give your child plastic cooking utensils, such as spoons and spatulas, along with a large bowl. Place appropriate finger foods in the bowl, and encourage your baby to pick up the utensils and use them to move the food around. Choose utensils with different sized handles so your baby learns how to grasp and hold objects in various ways.  

BEGINNERS (Ages 2-3)

  • In the classroom: During imaginative play, teachers provide pens, markers and crayons to encourage students to practice writing. For instance, they pretend to own a restaurant and write food orders, and pretend to be doctors and take notes about the condition of their stuffed animals.
  • At-home activity: Incorporate writing activities during playtime. Bring sidewalk chalk outdoors and ask your child to write what they see. Don’t correct spelling or proper letter formations. Show enthusiasm in any efforts he makes, as this is how children learn that words are powerful and have meaning.


  • In the classroom: Different writing tools and surfaces make writing more interesting for children. Our Intermediates use chalk on a chalkboard, form letters using modeling clay, and finger paint on canvas.
  • At-home activity: Three year olds enjoy mimicking adults in their daily activities. Allow your child to engage in a new writing activity with you, such as writing a grocery list or a thank you card. Explain to him what you are writing and the purpose it serves.

PRE-K/PRE-K 2 (Ages 4-5)

  • In the classroom: Teachers make writing fun for our older preschoolers by creating a classroom post office and asking the children to write and mail letters to each other. Through this activity, students practice communicating thoughts and ideas on paper, using proper grip, writing first and last names in correct case, and writing words independently by using inventive spelling. Inventive spelling encourages a love for writing and reinforces phonics. Traditional spelling is encouraged as students move into more formal writing in early elementary grades.
  • At-home activity: After a family outing, invite your child to write about his day in a journal. Encourage him to use uppercase and lowercase letters. If he asks for help writing more challenging words, have him attempt to spell them by sounding out the word and writing the letters that make that sound. Invite him to read his journal entry to you.
  • We provide many opportunities for our preschoolers to develop and practice their writing skills. By setting this foundation, they will be better prepared to communicate thoughts and ideas through writing in elementary school and beyond.

– Lauren Starnes, PhD- Director of Early Childhood Education

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