Principal’s Notes from Nottingham – April 26, 2017

Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems.           —Rainer Maria Rilke


Dear Parents/Guardians,

Outdoor lab tentHave you noticed a decided uptick in the pace of your days? We here at Nottingham certainly have! Our return from break found our teachers hard at work finalizing grades for the third quarter report cards, and meeting with coaches to plan and pace out the 4th quarter learning objectives. Our fifth graders, their teachers, several intrepid parents/guardians and Mr. Koutsouftikis and I enjoyed a real taste of spring at their Outdoor Lab experience.  One of my favorite experiences has to be the night hike in which we challenged and tested our night vision. During “free” time in which Knights are given the chance to go boating, fishing, or play a variety of games with friends, the joy and delight was infectious. Late last week our rising middle schoolers fanned out to visit their respective middle schools for a formal welcoming orientation. This all points to sure signs that we are nearing the home stretch of the academic year.


Jump Rope for Heart

Jump Rope for HeartThanks to the outstanding efforts of our P.E. Team, Mike Giusto and Bobbie Pugh, Nottingham Knights in grades three – five raised $13,324 for the American Heart Association via the Jump Rope for Heart Program.  This event helped our Knights learn the importance of keeping their heart strong as well as learning jump rope skills, all while providing the opportunity to raise money to help children with special hearts. We appreciate that our Knights learned about heart-healthy activities while participating in this worthwhile, fun endeavor. Thank you for your generosity to such a worthy cause!


Volunteer Appreciation- Calling all Volunteers

Volunteer Thank You Bulletin BoardHere at Nottingham we value our parent/teacher relationship. You are a large part of what makes our learning community such a wonderful place for children to learn and grow. Thank you so much for all of the extra help this year – we think you are terrific!  If you are here at Nottingham on Friday, April 28th for Math Day, consider stopping by the Main office for a small “Thank You” treat. To us, you are a lifesaver.


Math Day

By now, your child’s teacher should have invited you to “learn alongside your child” on Nottingham’s Math Day, Friday, April 28.  Math open houses will be held in classrooms between 9:20 and 10:20 a.m.  Stop by the library to gauge your estimation skills.   If you would like to further help your children improve their mathematical thinking skills, here are some powerful questions to ask your child/children about mathematics from Jo Boaler (you can learn more at youcubed at Stanford University).

  • Why does that answer make sense?
  • Why does that method work?
  • How is the method connected to others?
  • How can that idea be represented in different ways?
  • Can you prove it?
  • Can you prove it visually?
  • Can you predict what would happen if…?
  • Did you make any interesting mistakes?

The SCA Jar Wars Campaign 2017 – April 24th to April 28th

Jar Wars!This week members of our Nottingham SCA have been encouraging all Knights to look for spare change in order to join in our annual Jar Wars event. This year, the SCA will be purchasing recorders and music supplies (along with a donation) for students in the Sneha Care Home /School in Bangalore, India.

When sharing the brief presentation with our SCA members, I asked them to think about the question:  What do we have in common with our friends across the globe?  I noted that both schools have students who speak more than one language and come from different cultures and practice many religions. In addition, they have a Champion in Me 5K Run/ Discovery NTM Fun Friendship Run and we both have School Beautification projects.

Jars, labeled with each grade, will be in front of the main office.  Before and after school, Knights should place their coins in the jars of their choosing.  Pennies count positively for the grade and silver coins take away from the total. Our Student Council representatives told students to be sure to “ask their parents/guardians” before bringing in any money.


Appropriate Dress:  Friendly Reminder

smilng sunWhen the current rains stop, we anticipate a string of beautiful weather, prompting our Knights to break out their spring/summer wear. Parents/guardians are asked to assist their child in reviewing their clothing choices so that they are appropriately attired for school activities as well as for comfort. The active learner will climb on playground equipment, run outdoors, and sit on rugs in the classrooms and library. On days when your child has PE, sneakers should be worn or carried to school.  Head coverings, (including hats and caps) may not be worn in the school building, unless for religious purposes or school-designated spirit days. Shirts and blouses must fully cover the chest, midriff and back. Tank tops and camisoles should not be worn to school. Thank you in advance for your efforts to help your child determine appropriate clothing for school!


Math Letter to Fifth Grade Parents/Guardians

Parents/Guardians should have received a letter with information about sixth grade math courses in their child’s backpack earlier this month.  An excerpt from the letter is below:

In June, a team of experienced math educators will determine a mathematics course recommendation for your rising sixth-grader…For more information about the different assessments noted above or the APS Mathematics Pathways, . . . visit the following website: https://www.apsva.us/mathematics/secondary-math-program/course-pathways.


May Festival

May Fest 2017Here ye! Here ye! Come one, come all! The quest runs from 1 PM – 4 PM on Sun., May 7 in our very own Kingdom! An epic adventure awaits!

  • Experience the jousting arena, fencing demonstration, laser tag and more
  • Don a disguise in the Creative Corner, then tackle the Scavenger Hunt
  • Get your move on with sack races, basketball free throw, and other games and adventures
  • Dine at the Royal Food Court from a selection of local food trucks
  • Rest and recuperate from your travels with live entertainment
  • And More!

Get all of the noble details on the May Fest Website

The Garden Shop Returneth!

Pre-sales run through 11:00 PM on Saturday, April 29th. Get more information and place your order here:  https://nespta.membershiptoolkit.com/gardenshop Pre-order your plants and pick them up May 7th at May Fest!  Contact Suzanne Libby with questions suz.c.libby@gmail.com

Royal Assistance is Needed!

We are scouting for adult volunteers (that’s you!) to assist on the day of the event in one-hour time slots. The class with the most parent volunteers will win a special treat – Mrs. Pelosky will join their class for a lunchtime discussion! Do your part for the kingdom and sign-up here


Upcoming Events

  • 05/06/17 – May Festival – Theme:  Knights Joust Want to Have Fun! – Sun. 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
  • 05/10/17 – Choral Musical – Pirates – 7:00 – 7:30 p.m. / MultiPurpose Room

I look forward to seeing many parents/guardians at this week’s Math Day event!  It is with deep gratitude towards our parents/guardians for your hours of volunteerism that I thank you all for being partners in your child’s/children’s education.

Mary Beth Pelosky
Marybeth.pelosky@apsva.us