The Growing Times – April 2022

April 1, 2022
Number 04

NOTE FROM MS. JANE:

Thank you for all the kind words as I make my plans to retire! Grow to Know has been and always will be a  very special place to me.  I plan to be here for Pre-K graduation and through most of May to assist in the transition. 

As you know, Crystal has made the decision to step away from GTK at the end of May to spend more time with her family. Crystal is AMAZING!  Crystal has been the “numbers” person in the office with the billing, payments, wait lists, budget issues.  She does all the things I can’t do or don’t want to do, like taking care of the computer stuff, phone calls, scheduling, the late night/early morning call-ins for staff and so much more.  She keeps me organized, helps plan events, helps makes decisions in the early morning hours about school closures due to weather and most importantly,  assists with anything and everything.  She is THE BEST!  Thank you, Crystal, for everything you have done for GTK…..and me! You are appreciated more than you know and will be so missed.

We will keep you updated as all of the new things come together.  Continue to pray for the transition, peace, patience, and wisdom.  Change is a good thing and great things are coming.    

Thanks for sharing your precious children with you.  Happy Spring!!!

COMING UP

Licensing!  The date is set for Wednesday, April 13!  Prayers appreciated.  Thanks for getting everything to us.  The licensing person will inspect each of the classrooms, the playgrounds, review all of the staff files, and a percentage of the children’s files.  It’s a very LONG day. 

SUPPORTING GTK

  • GTK can always use the following items:
    • Sand for the sand box
    • Wipes
    • Bubbles
  • The new STEAM Room can always use the following:
    • Paper towel and toilet paper holders
    • Paper cups
    • Arts/crafts supplies (masking tape, markers, glue sticks, glue, felt, beads, stickers, poms poms, popsicle sticks, etc.)
    • Books:  (The following books are recommended books to enhance/teach/inspire skills in science, technology, engineering, art, and math.  We would love to have them for our STEAM Room.)

              “Too Big, Too Small, Just Right”  by Frances Minters

               “Who Are They?” by Tana Hoban

              “Look Book” by Tana Hoban

               “Shapes, Shapes, Shapes” by Tana Hoban

               “The Snowy Day” by Ezra Keats

               “Ten, Nine, Eight” by Molly Bang

               “Mouse Paint” by Ellen Stoll Walsh

               “The Dot” by Peter Reynolds

GROW TO KNOW UPDATES

Staffing:

  • Ms. Kaytlin Childress is the new Lead Teacher in the Lavender Classroom. 
  • Ms. Brooke Hafer has moved into the office as the administrative assistant.  She is trying to learn all about ProCare (billing/payment program for tuition), ADP (check in/out program/payroll program for staff, and all about paperwork for licensing, computer stuff, copier stuff, etc.
  • Mrs. Carrie Johnson is the Lead Teacher in the Teal Room.  Carrie has been the teacher aide in Teal for several months.  She has also been the aide in several other classrooms throughout the years. 
  • Mrs. Heather Long will be stepping into the Assistant Director position beginning June 1.  Heather has been at GTK for many years in several roles, including Blue Room Lead Teacher, teacher aide, office assistant, and GTK Kids.  

There are lots of transitions at GTK so continue to  pray for transitions, peace, staffing needs as we move forward.

Other:

  • Thank you for attending the amazing Family Fun Night.  Wasn’t it wonderful to be able to have fun together???  Thanks for buying books from the Osbourne representative.  Each classroom was able to get a free book, plus we were able to get 4 books for the GTK library.  A huge thanks to Ms. Kayla and Ms. Riley for organizing and all of the volunteers that put everything together, served snacks, and cleaned up. 
  • Playground News:   Thanks to an amazing donation, we will be getting “tire mulch” for the big playground.  The entire process consists of the following: 
    • Dig out 4-6 inches of the wood mulch.  The kids have been so excited to watch the progress!
    • Get the old mulch out from an enclosed playground.
    • The old mulch will be dumped on the community garden.
    • Get the new mulch on the new playground.
    • Spread the new mulch.  We may try to get parents help us spread the new mulch….stay tuned.
      • The wood mulch has to be replaced every 12-18 months, while the tire ground cover is guaranteed to last many years.
      • The playground donation is an amazing gift.  Thank you!
      • The Little Playground is next on the renovation list.  (See below.)
  • Summer at GTK:  
    • The Pre-K children that are going into Kindergarten will transition to GTK Kids beginning June 6. 
    • The children in Blue, Sage, and Turquoise not going into Kindergarten will be combined into one class for the summer.  Plans are being made for the class so stay tuned.
    • There may be some early movement in the other classes.  You will be notified if we move your child into the next class beginning in the summer.
    • Summer Themes:
      • Week of June 6:  Camping/Fishing Week
      • Week of June 13:  Bug Week
      • Week of June 20:  Under the Sea Week
      • Week of June 27:  In the Sky Week
      • Week of July 4:  Red, White, Blue Week
      • Week of July 11:  Game Week
      • Week of July 18:  Farm Week
      • Week of July 25:  Community Helper Week
      • Week of August 1:  Travel Week
      • Week of August 8:  Circus Week
  • Fall at GTK:
    • Class lists for the fall will be announced the first of May. 
    • Enrollment paperwork will be required for the 2022-23 school year.
    • GTK will not open any new classrooms for the fall.  We will hope and pray staffing will improve to open new classrooms in the fall of 2023.

GARAGE SALE

YES, GTK is having a garage sale this year!  Prior to the pandemic, GTK had an annual garage sale to assist with some of our bigger projects, such as getting the big strollers for the toddlers,  needs when we renovated the classrooms, bikes for the gym,  etc. This year the garage sale project will assist with the following:

  • GTK needs new ground cover for the “Little Playground.” 
    • Turf?
    • Ground cover similar to Dan Kinney park. 
    • Ideas?
    • Not wood mulch! We want something that is more user friendly for the toddlers.
  • GTK wants to have a “play/reading space” by design for the toddlers.  We want to have an age appropriate space for the toddlers that is just as amazing as the STEAM Room upstairs for the older kids. 

Here is how you can help us:

  1. Clean out your closets, cabinets and donate to the sale. Drop off dates:  April 30 (9:00-12:00), May 2 (7:00-5:30).
  2. Save your money and shop at the sale to restock your closets and cabinets. Sale days: May 6 (7:00-5:30 ), May 7 (9:00-12:00). 
  3. Tell your friends and neighbors about the sale—drop off dates and sale dates.
  4. Volunteer to help with the garage sale.

Volunteer during the week with set-up. For every 30 minutes of volunteer time, you will get a $5.00 voucher to the garage sale. ….and time to pre-shop. 

Volunteer at the garage sale. 

Volunteer for clean-up. 

TEACHER APPRECIATION WEEK

May 2-6 is Teacher Appreciation Week!  We will be celebrating staff all week.  The GTK staff goes above and beyond on a daily basis and work hard to provide a safe,  caring, and fun environment, with a lot of learning thrown in.   You can help us celebrate the GTK staff by having your child color, draw a picture for their teacher(s).  Or let them pick a beautiful dandelion bouquet for their teacher.  The teachers LOVE getting those “special” things from their students.   Thanks for loving and supporting the GTK staff! 

PRE-K UPDATES

It’s hard to believe that Pre-K Graduation is right around the corner.  Where did the time go?  It is such a bittersweet feeling to send “our” GTK kids to kindergarten.  We certainly wish them well and can’t wait to see them and/or hear their stories. 

  • Pre-K Graduation:

When: Thursday, May 19, 2022 @ 4:00

Where:  Schweitzer Sanctuary

Who:  The Pre-K children going into Kindergarten in August, 2022.

            We will have one graduation celebration in the sanctuary for all of the Pre-K graduates.

  • Pre-K Party at the Park with hotdogs. Parents are invited.

When:  Friday, May 20, 2022 @ 10:00-1:00.

Where:  The Pre-K classes will be traveling to the Dan Kinney Park for play and hotdogs. Watch Dojo for the details.

  • Grow to Know Kids:
    • The enrollment is still open, but only a few open spots remain.
    • June 6: First day for GTK Kids. 
    • GTK Kids space.
      • The STEAM Room/Music Room will close for the summer.  GTK Kids will utilize the space upstairs for their home rooms, activities, and all the fun.
      • GTK Kids will eat breakfast, lunch, and snack in the gym.
      • GTK Kids will utilize the fenced in playground.
    • July 4: CLOSED
    • August 11:  Last day for GTK Kids.
    • Weekly field trips.
    • “Like” GTK Kids (School Age) Facebook page for updates.
    • Prayers for the staffing needs. 

COVID-19 UPDATES

Thank you for your diligence with all things Covid!  It has been quite the ride for two years.  Your patience and understanding has been appreciated more than you know.  At this time, we will continue to monitor and assess as the need arises. 

PARENTING TIPS

·         Pray for each other.  Being a parent is glorious and amazing, but it is also challenging, frustrating and difficult.  So let’s be a group that prays for each other.

You can help your child be successful in school:

·         By encouraging independence.  Encourage your child to be responsible for their coat,  shoes, backpacks, water bottle,  etc.  He/she should know what their personal items look like, where they belong or where they left them.  Example:  “My coat is blue.”  “I left my water bottle in my basket.” 

Instead of picking up their coat, ask the child, “Where did you put your coat?”  “Is your coat in the basket?”  “Bring your coat/backpack into the house.” 

·         By encouraging the child to carry their own items into the school or to the car.    

·         By explaining the rules.  “You can’t take snacks into school because some kids are allergic to that or it makes some kids sick.”  “The rule at school is to talk softly in the hallway.” “You must stay with your teacher so you are safe.”

·         As children get closer to school age, discuss bathroom privacy.  (Peeking under the stalls, crawling under the stalls,etc) Children are curious so talk to your child about “private parts”  and a “no show” policy.” 

·         At GTK, we use the words safe and kind—ALL THE TIME!  Instead of talking about individual rules, safe and kind can embody everything.  Using safe and kind allows children to begin to understand the “bigger” picure and make decisions.  Example:  Is it kind to be loud in the hall when the babies might be sleeping?  Is it safe to make your friend cry?  Is it kind to be helpful? 

I love talking “kids” and helping them be successful so come talk to me.      

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            DID YOU KNOW????

·         That GTK has 30 graduates going into Kindergarten? 

·         That we are required to have 12 fire drills in a calendar year?  We are also required to exit the building in under three minutes…NO MATTER WHAT!

·         That we are required to have four storm drills in a calendar year? 

·         That all staff have an annual background check? 

SCHWEITZER CHURCH

Check out the Schweitzer website at www.schweitzer.church for classes, updates, and news.

  • Maundy Thursday Service at 6:00 in the Sanctuary.
  • Good Friday Stations of the Cross (Friday, April 15 @ 7:00-7:00 and Saturday, April 16 @ 9:00-12:00) in the Outreach Center.
  • You are invited to attend Easter services at Schweitzer at 9:00 (Traditional) or 11:00 (Modern) in the sanctuary.  Check out the Schweitzer Children’s Ministry for special Easter fun.
  • R and R:   Make your reservation for free child care on Friday, April 22 from 6:30-8:15.  Drop your child off for a fun evening while the parents can enjoy some time without children. Check it out at:  www.schweitzer.church.

INFORMATION

  • Grow to Know Hours:  7:00-5:30.   You will charged $5.00 per minute after 5:30 PM.
  • Please call the office OR post on the GTK Facebook page if your child is going to be absent or will be arriving after 9:00.    (The kitchen staff does lunch counts starting at 9:00.)
  • A $15.00 late fee is applied to late payments and balances carried over.  If you have specific questions, contact the office. 
  • Grow to Know has a private Facebook page for the GTK families and staff, so “Like” us on Facebook.  Check out the Grow to Know website (www.gtkpreschool.com). 
  • We bill on Mondays for the week. 

Bible Verse for April: 

“I am the Lord, the God of all mankind.  Is anything too hard for me?”

 Jeremiah 32:27

CALENDAR OF EVENTS:                                

April:

            17:  Easter

            Easter Services at Schweitzer at 9:00 (Traditional) and 11:00 (Modern)

            Easter egg hunt at 10:15 at Schweitzer

            27:  Zoo Day

            30:  Garage Sale Drop Off @ 9:00-12:00

May:

            2: Garage Sale Drop-off (7:00-5:00)

            6,7: Garage Sale (6th @ 7:00-5:30, 7th @ 8:00-12:00)

            19:  Pre-K Graduation @ 4:00

            20:  Pre-K Party at the Park @ 10:00-1:00

30: CLOSED

June:

            6:  GTK Kids begins

July:

4:  CLOSED 

August:

            11:  Last day for GTK Kids

            11:  Meet the Teacher

            11:  End of Summer Bash—watch for details

            12: GTK CLOSED!  This is a day for Staff Training

            15:  First day of the school year

September:

            5:  CLOSED

October:

November: 

            23-25:  CLOSED

December:

            26-30:  CLOSED

January: 

            2:  CLOSED

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