NEWS FROM THE PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE:
Love is in the air and spring is just around the corner. This month we will be kicking it off with Groundhog’s day to find out if we will get 6 more weeks of Winter or is Spring coming sooner? This month is full of celebrations including Chinese New Year, Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, and many more activities.
We are kicking off our Priority Registration for the 2016-2017 school year, February 1st and going until February 26th. Our school is currently full and we anticipate full enrollment for next school year. This is your chance to reserve your child’s space. The Registration during this time period will be $90.00 which is a $50.00 savings. After these dates the registration will go up to $140.00. Please look for your registration packet in your child’s sign in/out sheet. If you have any questions please see the front office.
We would like to thank all the parents and families that have participated in the past few fundraisers, because of your generosity we have been able to purchase new outside equipment for our Toddler Playground.
Mark your calendar for April 9th, we will be having our annual Week of the Young Child Carnival to kick of the Week of the Young Child Celebration. Look for more information as the event gets closer.
Reminder if you have any questions or concerned please feel free to contact me at (916) 689-7322 or email me.
From February 8th-11th Ms. Esmeralda will be doing her “Love”ly cooking class. The children will be cooking up some sweet treats.
Just a reminder School is Closed on February 15th in observance of President’s Day
PROFFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT DAY:
We are closed March 7th for a Teacher In-Service Day. This is an opportunity for the teachers to continue their education on our wonderful program and to learn new things to bring back to their classrooms to teach the children
It will soon be time to begin planning your child’s continued preschool education for next year. Our school is currently full and we anticipate full enrollment again for next year. It will be important for you to reserve your child’s spot. For those students that will be continuing with us (Infants through Intermediates, and those that will join our Pre-K2 class), we will begin Priority Registration sometime in February 1st . Registration during our Priority Registration time period will be at a discounted rate of $90. That is a savings of $50 off the regular returning registration fee. Registration after that time period will be $140.Look for information coming soon!
PARENT AMBASSADOR PROGRAM:
If there is one thing that parents love to do, it’s talk about their children’s successes. When friends ask you about your child’s experience at Merryhill, what type of success stories do you share? Do you mention the personal and educational discoveries that your child is making thanks to our advanced curriculum? Do you talk about the new levels of self and social confidence your child has gained thanks to our encouraging atmosphere?
Whatever the glowing reports you deliver about how your child is growing with his or her education, we couldn’t be more appreciative. In fact, we’d like to show you just how thankful we are for your endorsements. Now when you tell other parents about our school, you can become a Merryhill School Parent Ambassador!
For every new child you refer who enrolls at our school you can receive up to a full free week of tuition (based on attendance of new student) after 3 months of attendance.
This soccer program coach skills within a framework of character development based on respect, responsibility, integrity, leadership and sportsmanship. Their curriculum has been created to address the key areas of technical development that have the biggest impact on performance in the game.
We offer a beginning Jazz Dance Class each Wednesday. This class is designed to introduce children to the art of dance. Making the art of dance fun for children, Ms. Jennifer engages the children with special props and music. The children are able to show off their dancing skills twice a year with a dance recital! More information is located in the lobby.
Mr. Matt will be teaching an introductory music class. This class is open to all 3 and 4 year olds and will introduce them to different instruments, singing and much more! We are excited to announce that Music Matt is available for birthday parties. If you are interested, please contact Music Matt either through his website or by email. Please check out his web site at www.MusicMatt.com. If you would like more information he can be reached by e-mail: Only1MusicMatt@gmail.com or by phone: 530-220-4400.
News From our Education Department:
Helping Your Preschooler Develop Positive Friendship Skills
- Are you puzzled by some of your child’s social behaviors? Have you noticed that your toddler doesn’t interact with other children very often? Does your three-year-old get frustrated when a classmate won’t play with him? Will your four-year-old only play with her best friend?
These are all normal social behaviors for preschoolers. Learning how to develop friendships is a lifelong process. Children’s social behaviors evolve from smiling and cooing at others, to engaging in parallel play, to eventually forming friendships and playing together.
Below are ways we help develop friendships in the classroom, as well as ideas for you and your child to do at home.
In the classroom: Before they can communicate verbally, infants build connections by smiling, cooing and crying. By two months old, they might turn toward other infants, and by twelve months, they begin to imitate their peers. Teachers help facilitate this relationship by sitting infants near each other during activities such as story time and tummy time.
At home: Even though infants don’t really play with one another, they still benefit from “play dates” with other infants. Sit your infant face-to-face with another infant or in close proximity to an older sibling, and provide each child separate toys. Note when your infant watches the other child and what captures his attention.
Recommended reading: Friends by Helen Oxenbury and Let’s Play by Leo Lionni
TODDLERS (ages 1-2):
In the classroom: Many young children tend to engage in “parallel play.” They play near other children, but each child is doing something different. This is a natural phase of development. As children get older, they begin to enjoy more shared activities with their peers. For example, they might enjoy splashing their hands at the water table with others, looking at books while sitting close to a friend, and dancing to music with their classmates.
At home: Invite another parent and child to your home for a play date. Blocks, balls, dress up clothes and toy kitchen sets are great toys for children at this age. Don’t force them to play with each other. Instead, let the children decide on the level of interaction.
Recommended reading: Do You Want to be My Friend? by Eric Carle and I Can Share by Karen Katz
BEGINNERS (ages 2-3):
In the classroom: In the Beginner classroom, teachers refer to classmates as “friends.” Students learn about personal space and begin to practice good manners by saying please and thank you.
At home: Model positive behaviors while playing with your child. Say “I’m going to roll the ball to you. Can you please roll the ball back to me?” Afterward, say “Thank you. You are being a good friend.”
Recommended reading: How Do Dinosaurs Play with Their Friends? by Jane Yolen and Let’s be Friends by P. K. Hallinan
INTERMEDIATES (ages 3-4):
In the classroom: Between ages three and four, children attempt to understand social situations, but often do so from an egocentric point of view. They need adult guidance to help them navigate peer conflict and model appropriate friendship-making behaviors. Small group activities help children learn how to follow directions, take turns and develop friendships.
At home: Ask your child about their friends and what games they played together. If he says, “Andrew didn’t play with me today. He’s mean,” you could say, “Andrew may have wanted to play a different game today. Maybe you can play together tomorrow. What does Andrew like to play?”
Recommended reading: Just My Friend and Me by Mercer Mayer and Llama Llama Time to Share by Anna Dewdney
PRE-K/PRE-K2 (ages 4-5)
In the classroom: Friendship in Pre-K and Pre-K2 is usually reciprocal and deliberate as children become more skilled in social interactions and look for peers with shared interests. Our character education program reinforces friendship making skills using songs, games, books and brain-builder activities to nurture skills such as collaboration, understanding feelings and resolving conflicts.
At home: Bring your child to events that include multiple children, such as birthday parties, or encourage your child to play a board game that requires multiple players. Ask him to introduce himself to the other children, or encourage him to play the game taking turns. If you notice frustration from your child, say, “In order to play the game, we all have to play together.”
Recommended reading: Frog and Toad are Friends by Arnold Lobel and A Splendid Friend, Indeed by Suzanne Bloom
Don’t be concerned about the number of friends your child has, as it is more about quality than quantity. Each child will develop friendships at his own pace. What matters most is the development of social skills such as collaboration and problem-solving, which will help him transition into elementary school and beyond.
– Lauren Starnes, PhD – Director of Early Childhood Education
A few friendly reminders …….
- Upon arrival and during pick-up time, please make sure that you sign your child in and out in the sign-in/out binder located in the front office. All information must be completed on each line and be clearly legible. You must write a phone number each day where we can reach you immediately should there be a need for it.
- Should you require an alternate person to pick-up your child, please give a written letter to the office, stating the name of the person who is authorized to pick up. Please inform the person picking up the child that they must provide a valid form of identification with photo. A staff will ask for I.D. to properly identify this person as someone who is authorized to pick-up your child.
- All new students must have a complete file by the first day of school. Attendance will not be allowed until all necessary forms are completed. Please note that emergency information and immunization records must be updated as needed throughout the school year.
- Please make sure that your child has a crib-sized fitted sheet to cover his/her mat, a blanket, and at least two spare set of clothing in his/her cubby. On Fridays, you must take blankets and sheets home to be laundered and return them on Mondays. Please check your child’s cubby everyday for soiled clothing or other items that may need to be taken home. Please also make sure all items are clearly marked with your child’s name (clothing, sheets, blankets, sweaters and jackets, towels and bathing suits, etc.).
- Merryhill provides a hot lunch as well as a morning and afternoon snack. We do not provide breakfast, but we’ll be happy to assist your child with breakfast brought from home until 8:45 AM. If you would like your child to eat breakfast at school, he/she must arrive by 8:30 AM.
- Merryhill School is a NUT FREE environment, we ask that you not bring any food items into the school that contain nut products.
- Please refer to the tuition fee schedule for updated new rates and tuition policies for the current school year. A deposit equal to the weekly tuition amount is due on the first day of school.
- Tuition is due no later than Friday prior to the week of attendance. Tuition is considered delinquent at 12:00 PM on Monday. A $25 late fee charge will be assessed at that time and should be included in your payment. Tuition is continuous throughout the year. There are no deductions in tuition for absences, illness, or the holidays that are observed throughout the year. Each child is entitled to one week of vacation credit for each school year. Requests for vacation credit must be presented in writing to the office at least two weeks in advance.
- A charge of $1 per a minute will be assessed for children picked-up after 12:00 PM for half-day students, and 6:00 PM for full-day students.
- In order to keep you informed of everything happening at Merryhill, please check the Merryhill Links to Learning Parent Board and students’ files located in each classroom, our monthly newsletter, and our website. In an effort to establish prompt communication with parents please make sure to provide us with an e-mail address for up-to-date e-notifications.
- It is very important that you make contact with the teacher on duty when arriving or picking-up your child. This will help you better understand how your child’s day went and allow you time to ask any questions and/or voice any concerns you may have.
- During the summer months we will try to maintain our playground schedule when weather permits. We ask that parents put sunscreen on the children before they come to school. We also ask that you maintain a bottle of sunscreen in your child’s classroom and teachers will reapply as needed.
- Please make sure to carefully review our Sick and Medication policies. Our goal is to maintain a healthy environment for all our children and staff. We are asking you to abide by our sick policy as we will continue to enforce those policies with every enrolled student. Although their symptoms may not abide by the sick child policy, the school administration will determine when a child needs to go home according to their well being. On occasion, symptoms may be outside the parameter of our Sick Child Policy, at that time the school administration will contact you if we feel your child needs parental care.