December 2013



Happy Holidays Tashua Families!

As 2013 is winding down and we are wrapping up with the 1st trimester of school, it gives us a chance to reflect on all that we have accomplished as a school community. We continue to build on our positive school climate as we work to teach our students about the character traits that represent our T.I.G.E.R.S. acronym. Last month, we had a Veteran’s Day assembly to honor those who have served for our country. During the assembly, Mr. Bill Brown, Mr. Ray Baldwin, Mr. Bill Walsh, and our Mr. Brian McGuire spoke to our students about the importance of showing INTEGRITY. Our students listened closely to their powerful messages.  This assembly made quite an impression on the children and we were all thrilled to be able to spend time with these veterans to express our appreciation for their services. We also created an impressive American flag in the front lobby, displaying hands to represent those who we know who have served for our country.

To further reinforce the importance of showing INTEGRITY, Mr. Cohen, Mrs. Byers, Mrs. Mangini, and I rode the school buses to school. Some of our bus drivers meet at Tashua School in the a.m. before they begin their routes, so we took this opportunity to jump on board; each of us riding a different bus. The students had mixed reactions as they boarded the buses.  Many of them were surprised to see us!  Needless to say, the bus rides to school were pretty calm. As we arrived back to school, I asked the students if their ride to school was different today than it is on most days.  Several children felt the ride to school was quieter and calmer. With this, we reinforced the meaning of our integrity message – It is important to do the right thing even when no one is looking.

We have also developed a system to recognize students who show positive behaviors in our school. Students who have been caught “Earning a Tiger Stripe” are announced on the morning announcements. The behaviors these students exhibited are shared with the student body, however the names of these students are not revealed. At our assemblies moving forward, these students will be announced and celebrated in front of their peers. These student names will be put in a drawing for an opportunity to wear our child sized tiger mascot costume at the next assembly.

Further, we have developed a cafeteria incentive plan. Grade levels are working to show exemplar behavior as a team. With each successful day, the tiger for their grade level moves on spot on the track. As their tiger reaches the end of the track, they will be rewarded with 10 extra minutes of recess. The tracks are designed so that each spot represents one letter of the character trait we are focusing on for the time. Last month, it was INTEGRITY.  For the next two months, it will be GENEROSITY.

Our student council is helping our students to show GENEROSITY by having them participate in our annual school-wide “Holiday Helpers” Project; working together to bring a brighter holiday to the children in our regional Head Start program in Trumbull.

Our PTA is also helping us to strengthen this message of GENEROSITY by sponsoring a “Tashua Toy Drive” event. Thank you to all the parents who have helped to make this event possible.

Although it is important to show our generosity with events such as these, it is also important that we send the message to our children that generosity goes beyond materialistic items. Acts of generosity require an awareness of the needs and feeling of others. These generous acts can be shown through our actions of sharing our time and talents with others.

Important Announcements

Report Cards were sent home Friday, December 6th. If you haven’t done so already, please sign the envelope and return it with your child to school. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact your child’s teacher. A positive parent-teacher partnership contributes to your child’s school success.

The students in grades 2-5 will be taking district assessments this week (December 9th – 13th). Students in grades 3-5 will be taking a DRP assessment and students in grade 2 will be completing a writing prompt assessment. I know this is a busy time of year; please be sure your child has plenty of rest so that he/she will be ready to put forth their best effort.

Please remember to check the district website, or local news stations to find the latest news on school delays, early dismissals or closures. Please note that children cannot be dropped off early on delayed openings as there is no one in school to supervise them.

Delayed Opening Hours:

10:05 a.m. – 3:20 p.m.

Early Dismissal Hours:

8:35 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Please be sure that your child comes to school each day with a warm jacket or coat, hat, and gloves. We do try to get our students outside even in the cold weather so it is important that they are dressed properly so they can keep warm.

I hope you will be able to join me for Coffee & Conversation on Thursday, December 19th at 9:15 a.m. in the cafeteria. I would love to hear all that you value about Tashua School and have you share your ideas for the future.

Soon it will be time for our LONG winter break. During this time off it is important that students take time to continue reading, writing, and practicing their math facts. Make learning fun by tying it into your daily routine so students understand the importance of education.

I wish you and your families a happy and healthy holiday season! I look forward to working with you 2014!


Jennifer J. Neumeyer,