Elementary School Newsletter


October 19, 2018

Dearest PCS families,

Yesterday marked the end of Quarter 1. It always surprises me how fast the school year goes! With the end of the quarter, parent/student/teacher conferences will take place next week. We ask all families to attend these conferences as it really is an opportunity to once again work as a unified team to promote and support student success. No matter where a child is academically and socially, PCS’ mission is to continue to help the child grow and develop. Having a solid plan in place is the most effective way to ensure this. As you and your child’s teacher sit down together, the goal is to talk about where they are currently, where they need to be now and in the future, and how we are going to do that at school and home. We truly appreciate the collaboration that takes place and very much value the family perspective that is brought into the conferences and discussion. Thank you for trusting us each day with your child and working together for them!

Remember… Conferences will be held on the following days: Wednesday, October 24th: 4:00-7:30 pm and Thursday, October 25th: 12:30-7:30 pm. Teachers sent home your specific conference time. Please note day and time and if you need to reschedule notify your child’s teacher right away. It is important and necessary that you bring your child to the conference.  They have an important role to play.

Make sure to stop by and visit with the Specialists teachers as well during conferences. All specialists will be attending some individual conferences and will also have their rooms/offices open for parents to stop by and chat as well. Your child’s teacher (or your child!) can help you find specialists’ rooms if you are not sure where they are located. We look forward to discussing the progress of your child!

Have a great weekend!

Dana Leesman, Elementary Principal 

p: 314.645.9600 x608             e: dleesman@premiercharterschool.org #ThatsPCS #DoKind

Meet our Explorations Academy specials teacher, Maria Hansen…

I'm so excited to introduce myself to you all! I'm Mrs. Hansen and I am teaching the highly anticipated course Explorations Academy. E.A. (Explorations Academy) will be largely focused on the basics of Family and Consumer Sciences, founded as home economics. E.A. will give students, 3rd - 5th grade, a hands-on experience in beginning housing and interior design, culinary arts, fashion design, sewing and more. Students will also begin to discover the world of opportunities available through service based careers, business, entrepreneurship and early childhood development. This is an empowering class that helps students develop and explore the skills they need to navigate the jungle of life. Empowered by their abilities and skills, students will seek to use them to create change and bring social justice to their community and the world. Please follow our journey on Instagram @explorationsacademypcs or on Twitter@AcademyPCS. Email: mhansen@premiercharterschool.org

Our year is off to a great start! Explorers have begun to dive into our 1st unit titled "Design It. Build It. Fix It." They are on the search for answers to the question "How do we use design skills to build a better world?" Our explorers have been discussing design and construction concepts like tiny homes and even creating their own unique blueprints! Check out their architectural sketches on Instagram @explorationsacademypcs 

Red Ribbon Week…

Next week, October 22-25, PCS will be celebrating Red Ribbon Week. This is a week dedicated to taking a stand against drugs and committing to a drug-free and healthy lifestyle! Each day we will have a little fun and show our commitment. Take a peek at the attached letter from Ms. Boulicault and the Teeny 10 to find out about the fun days this week!

A Note from Mrs. Ramsey…

Makerspace open house during conferences Wednesday 4-6 pm, Thursday 3-6 pm in the Middle School Library/Makerspace

Stop by before or after your student's conferences to see our developing Makerspace and examples of student projects, try out some Maker activities (lego wedo, bloxels, makey makey, and more), and meet Makerspace facilitators, Mrs. Ramsey and Mrs. Daugherty!

Enchanted Forest Book Fair and Literacy Ball! The Book Fair is less than a month away!  Join us in a new location in the Elementary Building room 240.

The book fair schedule is as follows: Tuesday November 13th, 3:30-4:30; Wednesday November 14th 3:30-5:30; Thursday November 15th 3:30-4:30 and during the Literacy Ball 5:30-7:00

The Book Fair and Literacy ball share a theme this year: Enchanted Forest.  It will be a magical evening filled with unicorns, dragons, fairies, wizards and lots of books! All purchases benefit our school. This year we are working to build our Middle School library collection and our Elementary Library non-fiction section as we transition to two separate libraries!

Autism Speaks…

Thanks to all who supported the Autism Speaks Dress Down Day! PCS families and staff raised a total of $762.50 for Autism Speaks!  Wow!

Food Stuffs…

This Tuesday was our first fresh fruit and veggie snack. This is something we will be doing every few weeks to promote health and wellness with our students. Students will enjoy various fruit and veggies and discuss the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Teachers have checked the allergy lists, but if you have any questions or concerns, please let your child's teacher know. Thank you!

SFE Cooking Classes are back! Grades 3-5 will be participating in a healthy cooking class courtesy of our food provider, SFE. A chef and/or dietician will be teaching groups of 15 students (3 per class) how to cook something healthy as well as discussing other nutritional information. This takes place in our elementary cafe for about an hour during the school day. Students will be chosen at random and offered the opportunity to participate. Students who have not participated in the past will be chosen first. Classes started this week with 3rd grade and will continue throughout the year.

For our K-2 classes, a "Rainbows and Butterflies" nutrition class will be offered to some classes this year as well. We appreciate SFE's partnership in providing health education to our students. 

Food Service Survey…

At PCS, our goal is to provide our students with a fulfilling experience throughout every day that they are in attendance.  Part of our students' daily routine is eating usually at least one meal while at school.  We'd like to get your feedback on how you and your student feel about the food offered by Southwest Foodservice Excellence (SFE), our provider for school served breakfast and lunch.  Please consider taking this short survey to give us your point of view: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/J5WBFJD


Parent University Coming Next Week…

Please join us for our first Parent University Night of the 2018-2019 School year on October 23! The first topic will be about Digital Citizenship and, as parents, how we monitor and help our kids navigate this new world of technology. Dinner will be provided. Please RSVP to mgray@premiercharterschool.org with how many will be attending in your family.  See attached flyer for more information. 


A Note Regarding Class Parties in the Elementary School…

With the end of October approaching, there will be some questions regarding school and classroom parties. I wanted to take a minute to address to make sure everyone is on the same page. Over the last few years the team has continued to have discussions about the variety of parties we have at PCS and always thinking about ways to make them the most inclusive and successful. As a public school we have been careful not to make these parties only centered around religious based holidays, as well as keeping a reasonable balance as to how many parties we are trying to accomplish in one year.  A couple of years ago the elementary team decided to go with a winter party and a spring party and we will carry the same structure over to this year.

We understand that parties are a fun part of a student's schooling experience, and it is not our intent to take any fun away from our students. In fact we pride ourselves in creating many opportunities to experience the joy of each season throughout many months of activities and not simply one afternoon. Throughout the year there are many fun activities going on to celebrate the seasons and this Fall is no different. Hosting the peace rally, family days, the fall festival, trunk or treat, field trips to pumpkin patches and great outdoor venues are all opportunities our kids had or will have just to name a few. 

Please feel free to reach out with any questions you may have or clarifications you may need. Thanks!

Mini Cheer Camp…

The middle school cheerleaders are excited to be hosting the sixth annual Elementary Mini Cheerleading Camp! This camp is a unique experience for students in grades K-5 to collaborate with our middle school cheerleading squad, while learning the fundamentals of cheerleading and a fun cheer routine. It will be held at PCS on November 10th, 2018. A form was sent home with your child if they are interested in attending.


Free/Reduced Meal Status 2018-2019…

As a reminder, Free/Reduced lunch statuses from the previous school year have expired!  If you have not filled out an application for this current school year, or are interested in turning one in for the first time, make sure that you do so and turn it into any of the offices ASAP!   We ask that all families have one on file as our Free/Reduced Meal numbers have positive funding implications.  If you have any questions feel free to contact Ben Huebner at bhuebner@premiercharterschool.org.


Makerspace Supply Drive...

Thank you to everyone who has donated items to our new makerspace!  We will update our donation wish list each week and post it here!  Please see the updated list below for items we are still looking to add to our makerspace! 

*What is a makerspace? A makerspace is a place for students to imagine, explore, tinker, invent, design, and create.  3rd-5th graders will come to the makerspace once a week. During this special, they will learn how to use the new space and materials through a variety of design and building challenges.


Needing to contact a staff member at PCS??…

Reminder that if you need to contact a teacher and you don’t remember or have easy access to their email address, you can fill out the contact us on the home page of the website and it will be forwarded to the correct person. Staff bio pages will also be coming to the website by the end of the month.

After School Clubs...

Many of our clubs have limited space to join. Be sure to return club sign up forms as soon as possible if your child is interested in joining one. Many of the clubs employ a waiting list for potential members in case an opening does occur. If you have any questions regarding any of the clubs, please call the school and you will be directed to the team member sponsoring the club.


BAC Reminders…

Students are only allowed 5 drop-ins for Before care and 5 drop-ins for Aftercare per year. The Before care drop-in fee is $5 and Aftercare drop-in fee is $15 per student. There will be a $25 Aftercare drop-in fee per child on half days; our next half day is October 25th. Also, families that plan on using the drop-in program need to call ahead or email Mr. Lydon at jlydon@premiercharterschool.org

PCG News & Happenings...

  • FALL FESTIVAL is only a few short days away and will take place THIS SATURDAY, October 20!! This day is a family fun event for a fall afternoon. That evening please join us for Trunk or Treat and our First Annual Chili Cook Off!!  All events are held at PCS. Please see the attached flyers for more information.

    • HELP IS STILL NEEDED!! PCG is looking for volunteers to help make this Fall Festival the best yet! If you can donate some of your time that day, it would be much appreciated. Click on link to go to the Sign Up Genius page to see what times are still needing help. https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0c4eaaab28a6f94-2018

  • If you would like to be on the PCG parent email group, send your email address to Terry Brogan (tbrogan@lashlybaer.com).  You will receive updates on upcoming events, etc.  Please take a moment to like the PCG parent Facebook page if you are on FB.

  • If you have Box Tops at home, be sure to collect and sent them in for additional fundraising opportunities for the school.  There is a collection box located in the Elementary Building.

Fun in the StL...

Fri. Oct 19 3-6 p.m. City Green Fall Festival  4260 Manchester in the Grove Neighborhood . City Greens Market, a non-profit grocery store in The Grove, invites the community to its annual Fall Festival. Kids and families are encouraged to participate in the free festivities, including a chili cook off, face painting, a petting zoo, bobbing for apples and more. Fall Festival attendees will receive 20 percent off a City Greens Membership, which provides access to local, organic and sustainably produced groceries at-cost.  https://stlcitygreens.org/

Sat., Oct. 20, 6:30-8 p.m. Ghosts of the Arch Grounds Stargazing Event
On the present-day site of Gateway Arch National Park once stood a French colonial village, a thriving riverfront port and a warehouse district. Learn about the adventures and misadventures of St. Louis’ historical figures such as Thomas Targee, James Eads and Kenneth Swyers, and how they helped shape the history and lore of the area. Attendees should meet “Sky Ranger” Rich Fefferman at the water feature outside the new circular glass west entrance of the Gateway Arch, which faces Fourth Street and the Old Courthouse, for both the interpretive talk and stargazing.  https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/event-listing.htm?eventID=0C97274B-BE60-F4EB-D535B3CBDB649AE6 

Sat. Oct 20  10-11:30 a.m. Free Family Morning at the National Blues Museum 615 Washington Blvd. Downtown The National Blues Museum (honoring the music, not the hockey team) is hosting a family morning event with free admission for families, and will include live music, scavenger hunts, story time, hands-on activities, and crafts! It will also include our 'Musical Petting Zoo!  Normal admission is $15 for adults & $10 for kids so this is a great opportunity to see the museum for free!  Reservations needed:  314-925-0016 ext 432  https://www.nationalbluesmuseum.org/event/family-day-at-the-national-blues-museum-3/

Sat. Oct 20  8 a.m. set up;  9 a.m.-noon clean up;  pizza noon- 2 p.m. River Des Peres Trash Bash Volunteer Opportunity
Join Great Rivers Greenway District, the River des Peres Watershed Coalition, Missouri Stream Team, Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District and City of St. Louis in their fight to clean up the rivers and creeks within the River des Peres watershed. The 16th annual River des Peres Trash Bash is taking place on Saturday, Oct. 20, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. The clean-up will last from 9 a.m. to noon with a celebration and appreciation pizza lunch at Willmore Park from noon to 2 p.m. Volunteers will also be rewarded with musical entertainment and prizes for the “best” trash finds . https://greatriversgreenway.org/event/16th-annual-river-des-peres-trash-bash-2018-10-20/.

Sun. Oct 21  2-4 p.m. Special Needs Trunk or Treat Concordia Lutheran Church  505 S. Kirkwood Road . For many kids with special needs trick-or-treating may not be an option due to sensory difficulties, anxieties, dietary restrictions or even the physical restrictions of their own neighborhoods. For this reason, the Special Needs Ministry will be hosting an inclusive, accessible and sensory-sensitive Trunk-or-Treat event for special needs children of all ages & their families. Free but reservations necessary: http://www.ckhome.org/trunkortreat/

Upcoming Important Dates...

  • 10.20.18: Fall Festival, Trunk or Treat & Chili Cook-Off

  • 10.24.18: Quarter 1 Conferences (evening)

  • 10.24.18: PCG Family Night - White Castle on S. Kingshighway @ 4:00-7:00 pm

  • 10.25.18: Quarter 1 Conferences - Noon Dismissal

  • 10.26.18: No School

  • 11.2.18: No School - Staff PD

  • 11.8.18: PCS Board Meeting @ 4:30 pm

  • 11.9.18: Veterans' Day Assembly

  • 11.15.18: Literacy Ball & Book Fair @ 5:30-7:00 pm

  • 11.21-23.18: No School - Thanksgiving Break

Be sure to check us out on social media... Twitter, Facebook, Instagram!  All teachers & classrooms have accounts where you can check out pictures and happenings.