Family Handbook Mrs. Holt’s class

Mrs. Holt’s class
5th grade
Dear Families,
I feel very privileged to be your child’s teacher this year. I would like
to tell you a little bit about myself and explain a few things about my
classroom. Be sure to hold onto this packet, as it may answer questions that
come up throughout the year.
About me
I am so excited to be teaching 5th grade at Mullenix Ridge
Elementary again this year! I began my teaching career here at Mullenix in
2010, and have taught both 4th and 5th grade. I earned my degree in
Elementary Education and Special Education at Western Washington
University in 2010, and I worked at Mullenix Ridge from 2008-2010 while I
earned my teaching degree.
I was born and raised in Wyoming, but have lived in Port Orchard for
the past twelve years. My husband, Zack, works as an environmental
scientist for the City of Port Orchard; I am hoping that he can come into the
classroom and help us all become scientists too! In my free time I love
spending time with my family and my animals, and working on my house
and garden. My husband and I enjoy running together, and we have several
races coming up in the next few months.
It is my passion to teach children! Our classroom will be a great place
for your child to learn and grow. We are a community of learners and I
know we will learn much from each other. I have high expectations for all
my students and will work to meet each child at his or her developmental
level. We are going to have an amazing year together; I am looking forward
to our journey!
Morning Meeting
We will start each day together with a Morning Meeting. This is a
wonderful way in which we build community, work on our leadership and
communication skills, and increase excitement about learning. Morning
Meeting usually takes between 15 and 20 minutes. The students and I
gather on the carpet in a circle and begin the day by greeting each other. We
then discuss our daily schedule and learning goals for the day.
Next, a few students share interesting or exciting news followed by
conversation and questions. This helps students listen carefully, think
about what they hear, formulate good questions, and learn about each other.
When children share, they have a chance to feel that their ideas are valued
and that others care about them. After sharing, we usually do a whole-class
or team-building activity that reinforces academic or social skills and helps
students learn how to cooperate and solve problems. Morning Meeting lets
students know that school is a safe place where all of our ideas are
important, and it helps connect us as a classroom community.
I welcome parents to come sit in and be a part of any Morning
Meeting if you are curious. It is a fantastic time to team build and alleviate
many of the social problems we begin to see in upper elementary
This year, our lunch is from 12:40-1:20. Please be sure your child eats
a healthy, balanced breakfast each morning to prepare him/her for the
learning that will happen before our lunch is scheduled. Breakfast is served
before school starts each morning, so if you would like to purchase breakfast
at school you may do so. If you would like to purchase credits for the hot
lunch program, you may do so in the cafeteria or online through the district
web site. We also have a free and reduced lunch program that your family
may qualify for based on income. The cost of a hot lunch is $2.75, breakfast
is $1.55, and milk is $0.50.
Snacks and Treats
Since our lunch is later in the day, I think we may need a snack in the
morning to keep us going. I do not allow individual snacks, but I am happy
to pass out group snacks. If you would like to donate a healthy snack that
can be shared by the students, it would be much appreciated! Bags of
pretzels and crackers seem to work best as they are easy to pass out and
don’t make much of a mess.
Each child is encouraged to bring a water bottle with a lid to keep at
their desk. Brain research tells us that students learn best when they have
plenty of sleep, are hydrated, and are not distracted by hunger.
Parent Helpers
I welcome volunteers to help with student learning, to work with
small groups or individuals, or on special projects. Please let me know if you
are interested in volunteering in our classroom.
8:25-8:35 ~ Students come in to classroom
8:35-8:50 ~ Math Common Core Review and Morning Meeting
8:50-10:10 ~ Math
10:10-10:50 ~ Specialist
10:50-11:10 ~ Finish Math
11:10-12:40 ~ English Language Arts
12:40-1:20 ~ Lunch
1:20-1:35 ~ Read Aloud
1:35-2:10 ~ Content (Science, Social Studies, Art)
2:10-2:30 ~ Recess
2:30-3:00 ~ Enrichment
3:00-3:10 ~ Planners, Jobs, and Dismissal
Monday ~ Music
Tuesday ~ Library
Wednesday ~ Music
Thursday ~ P.E.
Friday ~ P.E.
Family Communication
Each day your child will bring home a planner. This is an important
communication tool intended to keep you informed about classroom
learning and homework for that day. Their nightly homework will be
written in this planner each day. I do not send homework home on Fridays
unless it is something that is overdue. Please take the time to read any
school communication that comes home. I will send most of the information
home on Fridays, but occasionally I will need to send home forms during the
week. I will also send home a monthly newsletter that will include
important information and updates on what is going on in our classroom.
Many classroom handouts can be downloaded on my classroom website.
You are always welcome to contact me at
or by phone (360-443-3325) if you have any questions. My website address is; there are many helpful links here!
Your child’s most important homework is to read every day. Each
night, set aside time to share a story, library book, newspaper, magazine, or
recipe with your child. You may choose to take turns reading to your child
and then having them read to you. After about 20 or 30 minutes, your child
may switch to their math homework for the night.
If you have questions about homework, feel free to email or call me.
Homework should not take longer than 45 minutes a night. If you find
that your student is spending a lot of time on their work or if it is
causing stress, please let me know so that we can come up with a
solution that will work for your child. It is my belief that homework is a
practice of the work that we are completing in class and should not cause
undue stress for the student or your family.
Grading Policy
I follow the South Kitsap School District policy for grading on daily
work and assessments. When an assignment comes home you will see a 4,
3, 2, or 1 on most papers.
4 – Excellent
 Work exceeds grade level expectations
 All problems are correct
 Work is above grade level expectations
3 – Shows competence
 Work is at grade level
 A few mistakes are present, but work is mostly correct
 Work meets expectations
2 – Still developing skills in this area
 Work meets some of the expectations
 There are quite a few mistakes
 Work is sloppy or careless
 Work is almost at grade level
1 – This is an area of concern
 Work meets few expectations
 Almost all wrong, shows a need of more learning
 Work shows that this should be seen as an area of concern
I grade for mastery. I do not average a student’s work. I give
formative assessments during a unit of study that will help guide my
instruction and assist your child in their learning. A summative assessment
of skills will be given at the end of a unit of study that will assess the sum of
their learning. I try to allow students to show me their learning in multiple
ways…not just paper and pencil tests. I believe that ongoing assessment is a
powerful tool that can inform us of where your child is at on a learning
I am very excited to have your child in my class this year. I believe a
partnership between families, teachers, and students ensures academic
success. I know that students thrive in a positive, safe, and loving
atmosphere. I will strive daily to provide this for your child and am always
open to talking with you and your student about any issues that arise. I
want your child’s fifth grade year to be the best! I check my email quite
often, so that is usually the fastest way to get into contact with me, but
please feel free to contact me via telephone if you have any questions or
want to set up a meeting!
Alycia Holt
5th Grade Teacher
Mullenix Ridge Elementary
Phone: (360)-443-3325