SES Greenletter April 6, 2020

Stowe Elementary School 

News and Announcements

A Note from Nina

Dear All,

First of all, I want to say thank you. Thank you for your patience, thank you for your partnership and for your feedback. More than ever it is important that we hear from you. The Faculty and Staff at SES are working to meet the needs of your children. The goal is to provide “just right” learning opportunities. In addition to the feedback you have been providing your teachers, we thank those that have provided feedback in the survey. If you have not had a chance to complete the survey, you can access it here.  We are using your feedback as we design our online instruction that will begin on April 20, following our April break from April 13-17, 2020. 

Many of you have asked about the end of the year celebrations, and our final day of school this year. While I do not have answers to those questions yet, please rest assured that as soon as I do, I will get the answers out to all of you.

We all know the importance of keeping our lives as “normal” as we can. This includes creating a schedule for learning. Teachers are taking attendance, and it is important that your child/ren engage in the distance learning opportunities that the teachers are sharing every day. If your child is sick or there are other reasons why your child cannot attend, we understand, but please let us know, just as you would during the regular school year, except instead of calling Dot and Sue in the office, please email your teacher(s).

We have all learned the importance of the internet during the past few weeks. If your family is having any issues with internet access, please email Dot at [email protected]. Tracy Wrend has been working on a pilot project, in partnership with Capstone Community Action and with the support of some generous donors, to provide 50 cell phones with wifi hot spots (and talk, text, and data) for families that need high-speed internet access. We will be reaching out to families to offer this opportunity next week. As we learn what works, we may expand this opportunity further.  We are also pursuing other options to ensure all students have access to learning and all families have the tools they need for the wellbeing of everyone in the household. If you are in need of any tech assistance, please email [email protected] and one of our technicians will be in touch with you to provide support. 

Last Friday we received a notice that recommended the closure of school playgrounds and playing fields. As we are all working on social distancing and keeping our families safe, we ask that you abide by these new regulations. We are all looking forward to the day we can be back together and the harder we work to stop the spread of the virus, the sooner that will happen.

During the break, we will continue to serve free student meals as scheduled. As a reminder, the meals we are serving are available for anyone 18 years or younger. They consist of breakfast and lunch and they are served at SES and MES every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:30-11:00.

I thank you again for your partnership as we navigate through these uncharted waters. We learn best at SES because of our amazing faculty and staff, our wonderful families, and your beautiful smart children that we are all missing so much! Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at [email protected].

Please take continuous good care of yourselves and your children.






Stowe Elementary is serving as a base for educational and essential services but is closed to the public.  The Central Office is also closed to the public but remains operational for necessary on-site work. Even though buildings are closed, you can still reach us by phone or email. 


Our health services team is ready to support you. Please call the SES office at 253-4154 or reach out to the Director of Nursing Services, Jordan Myerson, at 585-4087 or [email protected]


LSUU will be providing FREE breakfast and lunch to all children 18 and under while schools are closed.  Food will be available for pick up at SES on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:30 am - 11:00 am. Children do not need to be present.  Children do not need to be enrolled at SES. Children will be fed as long as they are 18 and under.


If you need tech support for your school issued device, please submit a ticket by emailing [email protected] or calling the SES office at 253-4154.



Frequently Asked Questions

Important links and resources follow:

What You Need To Know

What To Do If You Are Sick

How To Protect Yourself



Contact Lamoille County Mental Health Hotline at 802-888-5026 (M - F, 8 AM - 4:30 PM) or 802-888-8888 (Nights and Weekends)



Outdoor Recreation Tips from VT State Parks:

Outdoor Recreation in Vermont: Healthy Options During COVID-19 

Brainpop presents Coronavirus for children/families:


Important Things to know and understand about Coronavirus:

5 Things Everyone Should Know About the Coronavirus Outbreak

COVID-19: Everything you need to know to stay healthy and entertained while stuck at home

COVID-19: How to Keep Kids Busy and Connected

Q&A on coronaviruses (COVID-19)


Tips For Parents At Home

(Thank you to Tammy Bourne at MES)



Set up a space for learning/working at home.



  • This could be at a counter, part of the table or a corner in the room. 

  • Keep everything there so your child has folders and materials available.

  • This way things can stay organized and not spread all over the house and you know where they are when you need them. 

  • A place to keep ipads also.

Make a schedule of your day.

  • On a piece of paper, notepad, index cards, whiteboard, whatever you have available, write down what each day will look like and what is expected.

  • This sets the child up knowing what to expect. 

  • Provide limited choices (work on spelling now or read silently).  

  • Don’t forget to put in free time or choice.

  • Plus limits screen time.

Use a timer.


  • After going over the schedule let your child know how long they will work on the next activity.  Sometimes a timer helps a child stay focused during that time.

  • You can do this on the stove, microwave, watch, etc…

  • Sometimes best if the child can’t see it, but hear it when time is up.

Stick to your routine.

You set the tone. 


  • Just like you have a bedtime routine, stick to your daily schedule you set up that morning.

  • Of course there will be times when you have to deviate from your daily routine.    

  • If you are excited about their learning they will be too!

  • You don’t have to have all the answers! You can research together or check with the classroom teacher. 

  • It’s ok to make mistakes! Our children learn how to cope with a mistake when they see us make one and know that it is ok and that we can learn from them.

Last, but not least:  Have Fun!     

  • Have fun together!!!

  • Don’t be too hard on yourself if things don’t go how you were expecting.

  • Get outside!

  • Go for a walk!

  • Work on a special project together. 

  • Research an area of interest.

  • Allow down time and quiet time.

  • Read a book together that is not at their reading level.

  • Don’t forget to fill out the Juneau Reading Slips!




What a challenging time to be a parent!  We are struggling to meet professional and financial obligations in uncertain times… homeschooling children of various ages...keeping our own and our children’s stress levels under control, all the while worrying about the health of our loved ones and the well-being of our larger community.  Whew! Besides getting plenty of sleep and exercise, one tool to help your children stay calm is mindfulness. 

Being mindful is what it sounds like: taking the time to focus on the present… being intentional and thoughtful about where you are and how you are feeling… trying to slow your mental chatter in order to be in the moment.  Sounds simple, but it takes work, especially now when it is so easy to let our thoughts race into the future and into endless ‘what-ifs.’ Mindful activities can help. “Mindfulness isn’t complicated,” says Jill Emanuele, PhD, a clinical psychologist at the Child Mind Institute.  Here are some simple activities she recommends:

  • Squeeze muscles: Starting at your toes, pick one muscle and squeeze it tight.  Count to five. Release, and notice how your body changes. Repeat exercise moving up your body.

  • Belly breathing: Put one hand on your stomach and one hand on your chest.  Slowly breathe in from your stomach (expand like a balloon) and slowly breathe out (deflate).  You can also lie on your back and put a small stuffed animal or stone on your belly button. Focus on slowly moving the item up and down by fully inflating and deflating the belly.  

  • Mindful Meal:  Pay attention to the smell, taste and look of your food.  No multi-tasking.

  • Meditation:  Sit in a relaxed, comfortable position.  Pick something to focus on, like your breath.  When your mind wanders, bring your attention back to your breath.

  • Blowing bubbles: Notice their shapes, textures and colors.

  • Coloring: Color something.  Focus on the colors and designs.

  • Listening to Music: Focus on the whole song or listen specifically to the voice or an instrument.

Parents, you may enjoy practicing some of these mindfulness activities, as well.  For local inspiration on mindfulness, gratitude, compassion (and much more), follow Michy Lemay on Instagram @michysmindfulnessmission.



(With thanks to Mr. Dacales)




Stowe Parks and Recreation wants you to know that Community Garden plots are available and registration is open online!

Here’s a message from Kelli Millick, Stowe Rec Program Director:  “We have a lovely community garden with 40 plots. The garden pathways and water sources are maintained by our Parks Department. There are also gardening tools gardeners can use for free.  The garden opens on May 10th and ends on October 17th.” You can easily register online at the link below:




Free Online Workout Classes


The Swimming Hole is offering free online, instructor lead, workout classes for anyone that wants to take part!  Now, more than ever, it’s important to stay active; physically fit and mentally strong.

Here’s a message from Jeremy Bradley:  “I’d like to invite the Stowe Schools to take advantage of this! We have adult workout classes, health tip discussions, and now Fitkids to keep our youth active and moving.  We are also working on other offerings to keep our community engaged.

Check it out by following us on Facebook and/or Instagram.  Download Zoom and then log in with the Meeting ID number provided daily on Facebook and Instagram to enter into these free classes.”


PERCY BUS BARN             

We miss our cherished bus drivers!

Enjoy this little jingle written by Donna Farnham (Bus 1) who, along with Elaine Percy, will be retiring this year.





We wish you peace, health and safety during these uncertain times.



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