Gunston Gazette 05-28-2020

GovDelivery 4 days 18 hours ago

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A Message from the Principals

We are soaring through the school year as we conclude week 5 of distance learning.  It has been another wonderful week of learning with students engaged in learning with classmates and teachers. We look forward to seeing you this evening at the Virtual Principal Coffee with a focus on supporting  social and emotional wellness during summer break  beginning at 6:30 pm.  Just follow the link provided: https://us.bbcollab.com/guest/df62367f5bd542af83ee1163593d00cd  We appreciate all the parents who sent in questions.  We hope to see you there!

Tomorrow Friday, May 29th is our student material pick up.  Please check your e-mail or Remind app for messages from your child’s teacher which includes your specific pick up time and location.  We appreciate you arriving at your assigned time so we can efficiently return over 500 bags of students belongings.  We will only have select staff members at school supporting this process as we are following the health department guidelines.

  • Please go to your assigned location (Main Entrance or Kiss and Ride) and pull all the way forward
  • Please remain in your car at all times, a staff member will hand you the bag or place it directly in the trunk
  • A staff member will receive any library books, patrol belts, or instruments that you will be returning to the school.  We will not be accepting other items as we have guidelines to follow regarding items entering the building. 

As the year concludes, we would like to continue our traditions as best we can virtually.  The upcoming week is a spirit week and each day has a designated theme. (See more information below)  Please encourage your child to participate and take pictures to send to their teachers.  We are hoping to receive lots of pictures to create an end of the week surprise for students.

Have a wonderful week!

Ms. Rucinski and Mrs. White

REMINDER - Friday, May 29 Curbside Pick Up of Student Belongings at your assigned times! Band and Strings Instruments

Attention Band and Strings Parents and Students: We will be collecting band and strings instruments rented from the school or through the Instruments for All Program (IFA).

We are currently collecting instruments from:

  • All 6th grade students
  • Any students moving (not attending Gunston during the 2020-2021 school year)
  • Students not continuing in an instrumental music program during the 2020-2021 school year
  • Students planning on switching instruments next school year (contact your teacher first).  Instrument collection for these students will be in June. Dates and times to be determined.

Grade 4 strings students and Grade 5 band/strings students planning on continuing in their current instrumental music program on the same instrument next year should keep their instrument over the summer.

Please contact the band (mcszabo@fcps.edu) and strings (sjhegre@fcps.edu) teachers if you have any questions or concerns.

Gunston Virtual Variety Show Important Dates

Friday, May 29 - Performance types and music deadline

Monday, June 1 - Friday, June 5 - upload videos to Flipgrid

Friday, June 5 - Deadline to upload videos to Flipgrid

Wednesday, June 10 - Showtime!  Variety Show will be shared during each classroom's office hours.

Be sure to read all of  the guidelines carefully! 

End of the Year Spirit Week! Tips for Gunston Families

The student support team wants you to know that we miss you and we are here for you! We know how challenging this time is for our students and parents so we wanted to offer some resources to help during this time.

Internet Safety

Students are spending a lot more time online these days and for good reason. The internet is full of great learning resources and is a way for kids to connect with their peers. We have gathered a few online safety resources for you to review with your students to ensure they are being safe with this extra time online.

http://www.netsmartzkids.org/

A website with a variety of tips and games on staying safe.

 

https://www.mcgruff-safe-kids.com/2014/08/10-internet-safety-tips-for-kids/

A website with information on internet safety.

Virtual 6th Grade Promotion Registration Process 

Staffing for next school year is supported by early registration. This helps to keep class sizes at optimal numbers for the best learning environment for all students.

Registration is open for all grade levels for the upcoming 2020 – 2021 school year. Currently, registration is occurring virtually with our registrar, Cassandra Baltimore, conducting enrollment interviews over the phone or via e-mail. If you need to register your child for school, please reach out to Ms. Baltimore at  clbaltimore@fcps.edu. 

Please note that once schools reopen to the public, parents will need to make an appointment to complete the registration and present all required original documentation (birth certificate, deed or lease, etc.).

Please share this information with friends or neighbors who also need to register!

        PTA News & Information Welcome 2020-2021 PTA Officers!

Please welcome our new PTA officers for school year 2020-2021: 

President- Ann Loftus Poloncak

Vice President- Joan Wilber

Treasurer- Carolina Falaiye 

Secretary- Ashley Norman 

Thank you to everyone who helped our PTA make this interesting year a success.  We wish you a wonderful summer and please continue to stay involved in PTA next year!! 

Officer transition will occur after June.  Current contact emails for each position will remain the same.

Yearbooks

If you ordered a yearbook and would like your yearbook mailed to your home please email your address to ptagunston@gmail.com by June 2nd.  Otherwise yearbooks will remain at the school for pickup when school reopens.

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 05-21-2020

GovDelivery 1 week 4 days ago

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A Message from the Principals

Good Afternoon Gunston Families,

We cannot believe how quickly the end of the year is approaching.  We miss our students so much and love watching them show off their thinking in class each day.  We continue to be impressed with the student experiences in the virtual classrooms.  We want to thank all of our families for their support during these times.  We could not have been able to make this happen without your support.  As a school community, we always look forward to the end of the year events which have become our traditions such as the variety show, class picnics, and staff ice bucket challenge.  We are doing our best to plan opportunities for our staff and students to participate in as many of the events virtually this year.  We will be sharing more information about each event in future Gunston Gazettes.  Please be on the look out for Variety Show information, we are excited that our talented eagles will still be able to show off their acts virtually!  Sixth grade students will be receiving information about their virtual promotion ceremony.   We are looking forward to enjoying these last few weeks together before summer begins with our virtual celebrations!

Sincerely,

Ms.Rucinski and Mrs. White

Save the Date - Friday, May 29 Curbside Pick Up of Student Belongings
  • Classroom teachers have packed students' bags with items from their classrooms.
  • Your classroom teacher will be communicating your assigned time and location of pickup (front door or kiss & ride door) next Wednesday.
  • Please arrive at your assigned time (not early) as we will be staging bags according to time.
  • We have bags for family members grouped together so no need to come more than once.
  • Library books and Patrol belts will be collected from you when you drive up.  If you signed out a laptop it only needs to be turned in if you are moving out of our boundaries at a later date (after June 12th). 
  • It is not necessary for students to be in the car.
  • Please stay in your car at all times.
  • Please contact the classroom teacher if you have any questions about items being packed.
  • IF YOU WISH TO OPT OUT OF PICKING UP BELONGINGS....Please email Lynn Warner (lawarner@fcps.edu) noting your student's name and teacher, to let her know and we will dispose of items for you.
Gunston Virtual Variety Show

We are excited to announce that we will be accepting submissions for the 30th Annual Gunston Variety Show. This year it's going to look a little bit different since it will be done virtually, but we know that our eagles are resilient and extremely talented and are up for the challenge. The Variety Show is a
chance for all students in PreK-6th grade to display their talents. Some act ideas include skits, magic, dance, singing, playing  instruments and showing artwork. Below are the performance guidelines. Please be sure to read ALL of the guidelines carefully so we can accept your submission for the
show.

Virtual Parent Coffee - Thursday, May 28th

We will be holding a Virtual Parent Coffee on Thursday, May 28th at 6:30 pm with our social worker, counselor and school psychologist. This is a time for us to support each other as a school community by sharing resources, tips, and strategies as families adjust during these times. We would like to give you the opportunity for input on what topics we will discuss. Please complete this form by Tuesday, May 26th.

https://forms.gle/AkYQKCBacwgMHtwv5

Tips for Gunston Families

The student support team wants you to know that we miss you and we are here for you! We know how challenging this time is for our students and parents so we wanted to offer some resources to help during this time.

Student Wellness Tips

Let’s make sure we are trying to keep our immune systems as healthy as possible during this time. Try to keep a healthy diet and work some fruits and vegetables into each meal. It can also help to stick to a routine bedtime/wake time to ensure kids are getting the sleep they need (8-10 hours). Try some mindfulness videos or soothing music as you (or your student) is getting ready for bed to try to unwind your brain and prepare for sleep. Try to get outside as much as possible! Vitamin D can make a huge difference in our mood and is important to building our immune system. Bring your lunch outside and have a picnic, take the dog for a walk together, play tag, or just sit outside and take some deep breaths. Make sure to model the self care that you need so that your kids can see how important it is!

https://www.fcps.edu/student-wellness-tips

Supporting Executive Functions at Home: A Webinar for Families

On May 26, 2020, 10:00 a.m.-noon, the FCPS Behavior Intervention Services team will provide resources to help families support the growth of student executive functioning skills during this time of distance learning and beyond.

More information about the webinar and how to register are provided in the flyer linked below.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1jMYAWgDukeUCdoGN-DmrGdj6eWk_sV5h

 

Virtual 6th Grade Promotion Registration Process 

Staffing for next school year is supported by early registration. This helps to keep class sizes at optimal numbers for the best learning environment for all students.

Registration is open for all grade levels for the upcoming 2020 – 2021 school year. Currently, registration is occurring virtually with our registrar, Cassandra Baltimore, conducting enrollment interviews over the phone or via e-mail. If you need to register your child for school, please reach out to Ms. Baltimore at  clbaltimore@fcps.edu. 

Please note that once schools reopen to the public, parents will need to make an appointment to complete the registration and present all required original documentation (birth certificate, deed or lease, etc.).

Please share this information with friends or neighbors who also need to register!

What Gunston Library Books Does My Student Have Signed Out?

Please ue the link below to find the list of books your child has checked out from the Gunston Library.

https://search.follettsoftware.com/metasearch/ui/103873

If these instructions do not work for you, please contact Mrs. McIntyre at dhmcintyre@fcps.edu.

Any Gunston library books left in the classroom by your child will be returned to the library by your child’s teacher. Please, just do the best you can to find the library books. There are no overdue fines. Please do not send any book replacement money at this time.

Lorton Community Action Center

Each Monday, the Lorton Community Action Center will be providing weekly packaged summer lunches & kids snacks for kids under 18 which will last through the summer.  This is open to any and all students who may need it. 

The distribution is each Monday from 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm. 

Lorton Community Action Center is located at 9518 Richmond Highway

Access Books Online Through Fairfax County Public Library

While the Fairfax County Public Library buildings are closed, you can obtain a virtual library card to use until the buildings re-open. No need to present documents. Just sign up online.

When buildings re-open, you can get a real card and account by presenting a photo ID and proof of address at the library. If you don’t get a real card, the virtual account will eventually disappear.

Already have a library card? Set up and use Libby, the Overdrive app for reading and listening to books online.

Go to this link to learn how to sign up and how to access Libby and online books.

https://youtu.be/sfyOW261Sf0

Need more help? Go to fairfaxcounty.gov/library. Go to Ask the Library and submit your question.

Has or Will Your Address Be Changing?

If you have moved or will be moving before the end of the school year, please be sure to contact Ms. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu to let her know. This is to ensure that your family will get learning packets and other important information for the rest of the year. Please note that even if you have moved or do move out of the Gunston boundary before the end of the school year, your child(ren) can continue to access Gunston distance-learning resources through the last day of school.

Student Intention Forms for 2020-2021

We need your help in projecting our total enrollment for next school year.  For families NOT returning to Gunston Elementary School in the fall of 2020-21, please complete and return the “Student’s Intention for the Next School Year” as soon as possible.

You have two options to complete this form. Please choose ONE way to send the form!

  1. Complete the Intention Form. Please note that an individual form should be completed for each student in your household that attends Gunston Elementary School.           OR
  1. Complete the Intention Form on the FCPS Public website. A typed parent/guardian name on the Parent Signature line is acceptable.  Student ID Number may be left blank.  Save the completed form, attach it to an email and send to clbaltimore@fcps.edu.
        PTA News & Information Virtual PTA Meeting -TONIGHT May 21 @ 7:00 pm

Please join us for our last PTA meeting of the year!  We will hold a virtual meeting via zoom, information is below.  We plan to do a short wrap up of the year and finalize any PTA business, including voting on self-nominations for officer positions and our carryover budget (which can be found in the financial documents and forms folder on our website).  

Topic: May PTA meeting 

Join Zoom Meeting
https://zoom.us/j/3236608793

Meeting ID: 323 660 8793

Health & Wellness Tip

Childhood Vaccines

 Please ensure your children are receiving all of their recommended vaccines. 

Due to COVID-19, so many children have not gone to their primary care provider and thus, have fallen behind on their vaccinations.

Here is a link to the American Academy of Family Physicians vaccination schedule for children (birth to 18 years-old). 

If you need help with this, please email Heather Alsup-Morton, BSN, RNC-OB: helpoureagles@gmail.com

 

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 05-14-2020

GovDelivery 2 weeks 4 days ago

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Save the Date - Friday, May 29 Curbside Pick Up of Student Belongings

Details forthcoming!

Registration Process 

Staffing for next school year is supported by early registration. This helps to keep class sizes at optimal numbers for the best learning environment for all students.

Registration is open for all grade levels for the upcoming 2020 – 2021 school year. Currently, registration is occurring virtually with our registrar, Cassandra Baltimore, conducting enrollment interviews over the phone or via e-mail. If you need to register your child for school, please reach out to Ms. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu

Please note that once schools reopen to the public, parents will need to make an appointment to complete the registration and present all required original documentation (birth certificate, deed or lease, etc.).

Please share this information with friends or neighbors who also need to register!

Has or Will Your Address Be Changing?

If you have moved or will be moving before the end of the school year, please be sure to contact Ms.. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu to let her know. This is to ensure that your family will get learning packets and other important information for the rest of the year. Please note that even if you have moved or do move out of the Gunston boundary before the end of the school year, your child(ren) can continue to access Gunston distance-learning resources through the last day of school.

Family Resources

The family resource tab on Gunston’s Blackboard 24/7 is an area where we will share activities and resources that support social emotional learning (SEL), as well as community resources. Activities/ resources are compatible and easily adaptable to any grade level or age. We hope these activities, ideas, and resources will be helpful. Please feel free to reach out to anyone on the family support team (counselor, psychologist, social worker, parent liaison) if you ever have questions or need support! 

Recursos Para Familias

La barra que dice “Family Resources” en el Blackboard 24/7 de Gunston es donde vamos a compartir actividades y recursos que apoyan el aprendizaje socio-emocional (SEL), y también recursos en la comunidad.  Actividades/recursos son compatible y fácilmente adaptable para cualquier grado o edad.  Esperamos que encuentren estas actividades, ideas, y recursos útil. ¡Por favor comunícense con cualquiera de las personas en el equipo de apoyo familiar (consejera, psicóloga, trabajadora social, enlace familiar) si tienen preguntas o necesitan ayuda!  

Tips for Online Learning Success

https://www.fcps.edu/academics/distance-learning/instruction/technology-support?utm_content=&utm_medium=email&utm_name=&utm_source=govdelivery&utm_term=

 

Student Intention Forms for 2020-2021

We need your help in projecting our total enrollment for next school year.  For families NOT returning to Gunston Elementary School in the fall of 2020-21, please complete and return the “Student’s Intention for the Next School Year” as soon as possible.

You have two options to complete this form. Please choose ONE way to send the form!

  1. Complete the Intention Form. Please note that an individual form should be completed for each student in your household that attends Gunston Elementary School.  
         OR
  1. Complete the Intention Form on the FCPS Public website. A typed parent/guardian name on the Parent Signature line is acceptable.  Student ID Number may be left blank.  Save the completed form, attach it to an email and send to clbaltimore@fcps.edu.
        PTA News & Information Virtual PTA Meeting - May 21 @ 7:00 pm

Please join us for our last PTA meeting of the year!  We will hold a virtual meeting via zoom, information is below.  We plan to do a short wrap up of the year and finalize any PTA business, including voting on our carryover budget (which can be found in the financial documents and forms folder on our website).  

We have not yet found anyone interested in most of our officer positions, which are all available for next year.  Please email ptagunston@gmail.com if you’re interested in serving.  If we have no interested candidates by 5/21 we will move elections to the fall.  We need officers if we will continue to have a PTA so please consider volunteering! 

Topic: May PTA meeting 

Join Zoom Meeting
https://zoom.us/j/3236608793

Meeting ID: 323 660 8793

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 05-07-2020

GovDelivery 3 weeks 4 days ago

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A Note From Your Principals

Dear Gunston Families,

We are thrilled to successfully conclude week 2 of distance learning on such a positive note.  Participation is consistent and the lessons continue to be engaging and impactful!

Thank you to all the families for showing love to our teachers and staff this past week.  Teacher Appreciation week was filled with pictures, messages, and videos of gratitude.  The teachers really appreciated all your kind words of support.

Many thanks to our amazing staff of teachers who continue to go above and beyond for our students, families, and community.  We are very fortunate to have a dedicated, caring, and compassionate group of professionals at Gunston.

We are looking forward to another great week of distance learning!

Fondly,

Ms. Rucinski and Mrs. White

Notice for parents of Grade 6 students ONLY

Your student registered and made payments in connection with a field trip. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and consequent closure of Fairfax County Public Schools for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, your student’s field trip was cancelled.  If you wish to request a refund, you must do so in writing after reading the  letter and form found here.  The completed form is to be emailed it to Sharon Gunn at sygunn@fcps.edu 

 

Su estudiante registro y hizo un pago para un viaje de estudios.  Debido al COVID-19 pandémico y la cerrada de las Escuelas del Condado de Fairfax para el resto del año escolar 2019 - 2020, el viaje de estudios de tu estudiante se canceló. Si quieren pedir que les devuelvan el dinero, tienen que solicitarlo por escrito después de leer la carta y el formulario que se encuentra aquí.   El formulario completo se manda por email a Sharon Gunn at sygunn@fcps.edu

Student Support Team - Tips for Gunston Families

The student support team wants you to know that we miss you and we are here for you! We know how challenging this time is for our students and parents so we wanted to offer some resources to help during this time.

Breathing Strategies

Breathing strategies may seem simple and cliché but they really work when they are done effectively. Think of times when you are frustrated or angry and how a few minutes away from the situation with some deep breaths can help you regain composure. The same is true for children. We have worked with our students on breathing exercises at school so they should be familiar with the term “Elevator breathing”, “Hot Cocoa breathing”, and “Figure 8 breathing”. No matter what it is called, the best strategy is to breathe in through your nose and hold for 4 seconds and then exhale slowly through your mouth.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eaCACkuZ2bU&feature=share&fbclid=IwAR3G7BO71x7Pf6MiSSEmjYU2AKSYJStIlgOlB9y9DJKH24vUCiNFbI7a1P4

 

This site offers some great mindfulness and breathing tools for students and tips for parents.

https://positivepsychology.com/mindfulness-for-children-kids-activities/

 

Grounding Technique

Utilizing grounding techniques can be useful for anxiety in kids and adults. Try this simple one if someone in your home is struggling with anxiety.

5-4-3-2-1 Coping Technique for Anxiety

5: Acknowledge FIVE things you see around you. It could be a pen, a spot on the ceiling, anything in your surroundings.

4: Acknowledge FOUR things you can touch around you. ...

3: Acknowledge THREE things you hear. ...

2: Acknowledge TWO things you can smell. ...

1: Acknowledge ONE thing you can taste.

 

Registration Process Update!

Registration is now open for all grade levels for the upcoming 2020 – 2021 school year. With the building closed, registration will happen virtually, with our registrar, Cassandra Baltimore, conducting enrollment interviews over the phone or via e-mail. If you need to register your child for school, please reach out to Ms. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu

Please note that once schools reopen to the public, parents will need to make an appointment to complete the registration and present all required original documentation (birth certificate, deed or lease, etc.).

Please share this information with friends or neighbors who also need to register!

        PTA News & Information Visit our PTA Facebook Page

Don’t forget to visit the Gunston Elementary PTA Facebook page to check out information our PTA is sharing, including what we’ve done for Teacher Appreciation week.  We are so thankful for such awesome teachers at Gunston! 

Virtual PTA Meeting May 21 at 7:00 pm

Please join us for our last PTA meeting of the year!  We will hold a virtual meeting via zoom, information is below.  We plan to do a short wrap up of the year and finalize any PTA business, including voting on our carryover budget (which can be found in advance in the financial documents and forms folder on our website).  

We have not yet found anyone interested in most of our officer positions, which are all available for next year.  Please email ptagunston@gmail.com if you’re interested.  If we have no interested candidates by 5/21 we will move elections to the fall.  

Topic: May PTA meeting 

Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/3236608793

Meeting ID: 323 660 8793

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 04-30-2020

GovDelivery 1 month ago

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Distance Learning Update

We were so excited to see our students in their virtual classrooms all week!  The students are doing a great job participating in their lessons and being good digital citizens.  Now that the students know how to find their class BBCU links through their FCPS Gmail accounts, we are ready to begin live session for specials starting on Monday, May 4th.  Classroom teachers will post a video to their google classroom that will guide students through finding each link to their specials (PE, Art, Music, Japanese, Band, Strings, Library and AAP).  Each grade level has multiple links to different specials, so we created an organizer to help you keep track of the different class links.  The video will also provide students with directions to save these links so they are easier to locate when needed.  If you are having difficulty accessing specials Monday, please visit your teacher’s office hours for assistance that afternoon.

REMINDER:  There are a variety of specials a day because we know that students’ availability differs in each household.  Students are not expected to attend all special classes each day.  We encourage students to look at the options for the day and choose which ones they will attend for that day.  The sessions will be recorded so you can always view them at your own convenience.

Coming Soon: Teacher Appreciation Week (May 4th- 8th)

Do you have a teacher who has gone above & beyond for you or your child - supporting them, encouraging them to do their best or being a listening ear when they need someone?  Take a minute to write a note of thanks by sharing your appreciation with them.  Notes will be shared with the recipients during Teacher Appreciation Week (May 4th - 8th). You may fill out this form as many times as you would like for different school personnel.

Please use this LINK to share your digital thank you notes

Student Intention Forms for 2020-2021

We need your help in projecting our total enrollment for next school year.  For families NOT returning to Gunston Elementary School in the fall of 2020-21, please complete and return the “Student’s Intention for the Next School Year” form by Monday May 4th, 2020

 

You have two options to complete this form. Please choose ONE way to send the form!

  1. Complete the Intention Form. Please note that an individual form should be completed for each student in your household that attends Gunston Elementary School.  
         OR
  1. Complete the Intention Form on the FCPS Public website. A typed parent/guardian name on the Parent Signature line is acceptable.  Student ID Number may be left blank.  Save the completed form, attach it to an email and send to clbaltimore@fcps.edu.
Registration Process Update!

Registration is now open for all grade levels for the upcoming 2020 – 2021 school year. With the building closed, registration will happen virtually, with our registrar, Cassandra Baltimore, conducting enrollment interviews over the phone or via e-mail. If you need to register your child for school, please reach out to Ms. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu

Please note that once schools reopen to the public, parents will need to make an appointment to complete the registration and present all required original documentation (birth certificate, deed or lease, etc.).

Please share this information with friends or neighbors who also need to register!

Has or Will Your Address Be Changing?

If you have moved or will be moving before the end of the school year, please be sure to contact Ms.. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu to let her know. This is to ensure that your family will get learning packets and other important information for the rest of the year. Please note that even if you have moved or do move out of the Gunston boundary before the end of the school year, your child(ren) can continue to access Gunston distance-learning resources through the last day of school.

Message from your Gunston Student Support Team             

As we all navigate through these challenging times, the student support team has come together to share some resources you might find helpful when working with your children. These resources include, but are not limited to, stress relief tools, internet safety and student wellness. As always, we are here to support you and your family and know that we will all come out of this as stronger and more resilient citizens. We hope you find these tools helpful.

 

Visual Schedule

Most students are more comfortable knowing what is coming next in their day so a visual schedule can be a very helpful aid. We all know that flexibility is necessary as well, but it is still beneficial for kids to have a basic outline. This can be as easy as a chart you draw on a white board or paper that breaks up the day into chunks. Wake up time, breakfast, quiet reading, TV time, online school work, outside time, exercise, and lunch times are all examples of different categories to incorporate. You can work with your child to create this schedule and don’t worry about scheduling every minute, just use a broad approach to breaking up the day. The students are used to seeing their days broken up and it prepares them for transitions. Some students may even need a 5 minute warning before transitioning to the next activity. This may be particularly needed when a student is moving from a preferred activity (video games) to an non-preferred activity (reading). Some students benefit from doing a little school work then a break and then returning to school work while others may do best getting all the work done and then transitioning to activities they choose. Choose the system that you think will work for your child and let them know that you can work together to make changes if something isn’t working. Below are articles and examples of visual schedules:

Positive Behavior at Home Tip-sheet

Establishing Structure and Routine

 

Calm Corner

Creating a calm corner or "take a break" spot can be really beneficial for kids that are dealing with big feelings. This is not a punishment but an opportunity for a child to calm him or herself down so that they can discuss and work to solve whatever situation is causing the turmoil. There are a lot of different resources you could have at this space but it will differ for each child. Some may want his/her headphones with music, drawing tools and paper, or a stress ball and bubbles. Talk to your child about what works for him/her and then make a list of the options they came up with so they have some choices available. See this link for more ideas on creating a calming corner in your home.

        PTA News & Information Health and Wellness Tips Practicing Self-Compassion can Improve Your Mental Well-Being

Extending kindness to others can be easy. But cultivating compassion for ourselves? Not so much.

Yet without self-directed empathy, our deepest fears and worries can take over, activating our worst inner-critics.  One way to quiet these negative thoughts is to practice self-compassion.

Here’s one way to incorporate self-compassion into your well-being repertoire:

  1. Think of something that’s stressing you out.
  2. Notice the thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations that arise as you ponder this distress.
  3. Acknowledge your suffering.
  4. Place your hand on your heart and extend loving kindness by saying:
  • May I give myself the compassion I need.
  • May I learn to accept myself as I am.
  • May I forgive myself.
  • May I be strong.
  • May I be patient.

Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/practice-self-compassion#1

On April 29,2020

Online Yearbook Sales Extended until May 4th Lifetouch  would like to ensure all students have the chance to order a yearbook despite the recent school closures.

Order your Yearbook online today at ybpay.lifetouch.com 

Gunston's school code: 12465620

Price:  $20.00 (plus additional online options)

Sales DeadlineMay 4, 2020

Yearbook will be shipped in early June. 

Yearbooks will be distributed upon school re-opening or the PTA will mail your yearbook, free of charge if you provide your mailing address to ptagunston@gmail.com.

Calling all 6th Graders!

The yearbook committee is asking for all 6th grade students to provide a baby picture for this years "Guess Who" section in the yearbook. Please send your photo to gunstonyearbooks@gmail.com 

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Update to Distance Learning Plan

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Update to Distance Learning Plan

Dear Gunston Families,

I want to take a moment to thank our entire community for your continued support.  We had fun celebrating the Month of the Military Child with our spirit week activities.  We hope you enjoyed the video to honor our families and all of the Flipgrid messages of support from your peers.  I wanted to reach out to you with an update on how we will be moving forward with our Distance Learning Plan next week.

Following the update earlier in the week from FCPS Leadership, principals and school leaders engaged in training to get our Distance Learning Plan back on track.  I am pleased to announce that our teachers have been working diligently to prepare for a successful week of face-to-face sessions beginning on Monday, April 27th.   

What will be different now?

  • Gunston teachers are creating individualized secure links in Blackboard Collaborate Ultra (BBCU).
  • Each student has a unique link connected with his or her FCPS Gmail and student ID.
  • The new link does not require additional logon steps or the need to access the Blackboard 24-7 portal.
  • Synchronous classes, office hours and meetings can occur easily with BBCU.

In an effort to ensure that students and families have a positive experience with using their new link to access live (synchronous) sessions, we are taking care to have a gradual roll out plan.  Monday’s live session will be a “Tech Check In”, an opportunity for teachers to support any family facing challenges finding the new link.  Each virtual classroom will have more than one adult in the class, to allow teachers to monitor emails and help students having difficulty with their logon.  Teachers will be with the class for the entire virtual teacher directed time to reconnect with students and review digital citizenship expectations.  In addition, teachers will provide some asynchronous lessons/activities for students to engage in the rest of Monday.  With a successful experience on Monday, students will resume face-to-face sessions during Virtual Teacher Directed Learning and Office Hours on Tuesday for the remainder of the year.

Next week our specials (PE, Music, Art, Japanese, AART, and AAP) classes will be asynchronous lessons only.  You can find links to their videos and activities on Blackboard 24-7.

We will provide directions next week about how to access the various links to the specials classes and synchronous (face-to-face) specials classes will begin on Monday, May 4th.  

We created a schedule at the bottom of this letter that clearly shows what to expect each day next week. 

Teachers will be sending your students an email today with directions to access their school Gmail account and their new link to their virtual classroom.  Gunston teachers deserve our utmost gratitude for staying focused on what’s most important-your children and their learning.  I am honored to work with our dedicated staff and supportive community.  If you have any questions, specific to your child’s needs, please do not hesitate to reach out to a teacher, counselor or administrator.  We are here to support our community as we continue with our distance learning plan and resume live sessions next week. 

Sincerely,

 

Kristen Rucinski, Acting Principal, Gunston Elementary School

 

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 04-23-2020

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Volunteer Appreciation Week April 19 - April 25, 2020

To our many Gunston volunteers... we thank you and we appreciate you so very much!

Updated Third Quarter Grading Timeline

Due to last week’s pause in teacher-led “live” instruction, the third quarter has been extended until Friday, May 1, 2020. Students will work with their teachers to make up third quarter missing/incomplete assignments and complete reassessments by May 1, 2020. 

ParentVUE/StudentVUE access will be turned off to allow for teachers to enter grades from Thursday, April 23 through Friday, May 8. Grades will be available in ParentVUE/StudentVUE on Saturday, May 9.

Report card mailings to all parents/guardians who have not opted into electronic delivery will begin on May 12, 2020. 

We will keep you updated with information if there are changes.

Registration Process Update!

Registration is now open for all grade levels for the upcoming 2020 – 2021 school year. With the building closed, registration will happen virtually, with our registrar, Cassandra Baltimore, conducting enrollment interviews over the phone or via e-mail. If you need to register your child for school, please reach out to Ms. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu. This Temporary Intake (Enrollment) Interview Form includes questions that will be asked during the process.

Please note that once schools reopen to the public, parents will need to make an appointment to complete the registration and present all required original documentation (birth certificate, deed or lease, etc.).

Please share this information with friends or neighbors who also need to register!

Has or Will Your Address Be Changing?

If you have moved or will be moving before the end of the school year, please be sure to contact Ms.. Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu to let her know. This is to ensure that your family will get learning packets and other important information for the rest of the year. Please note that even if you have moved or do move out of the Gunston boundary before the end of the school year, your child(ren) can continue to access Gunston distance-learning resources through the last day of school.

Family Resources

We know that everyone is overwhelmed with the amount of digital resources, content, and curriculum being shared right now. The Gunston clinical team would like to be a support while not adding stress to anyone's plate. The family resource tab on Gunston’s Blackboard 24/7 is an area where we will share activities and resources that support social emotional learning (SEL). Activities/ resources are compatible and easily adaptable to any grade level or age. Incorporate what you want, and leave the rest. No stress, no pressure. We hope these activities, ideas, and resources will be helpful. Please feel free to reach out to anyone on the clinical team if you ever have questions or need support!

Learning Packets Opt Out

The packets are available electronically in FCPS 24/7 Learning so if a parent would like to print the packets at home, they may use the opt out link to stop receiving the printed instructional packets in the mail. Parents will need their student’s ID number and their e-mail address to access the opt out system. Please note, it may take up to 1 week to process the request to opt out. 

Viewing and Purchasing Spring Pictures

If you would like to view/purchase your child’s spring pictures you may do so by contacting LifeTouch at 1.800.736.4753. Please provide this picture day ID number when calling :HJ239044Q0. If you decide to purchase portraits they will be delivered to you at the address that you provide.

If you have purchased a 6th grade Panoramic picture please contact LifeTouch at the same phone number provided above for delivery options.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact Sharon Gunn at sygunn@fcps.edu .

        PTA News & Information Online Yearbook Sales Extended until May 4th Lifetouch  would like to ensure all students have the chance to order a yearbook despite the recent school closures.

Order your Yearbook online today at ybpay.lifetouch.com 

Gunston's school code: 12465620

Price:  $20.00 (plus additional online options)

Sales Deadline:  May 4, 2020

Yearbook will be shipped in early June. 

Yearbooks will be distributed upon school re-opening or the PTA will mail your yearbook, free of charge if you provide your mailing address to ptagunston@gmail.com.   

Calling all 6th Graders!

The yearbook committee is asking for all 6th grade students to provide a baby picture for this years "Guess Who" section in the yearbook. Please send your photo to gunstonyearbooks@gmail.com 

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Information Regarding Distance Learning

GovDelivery 1 month 1 week ago

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Information Regarding Distance Learning

 

.Dear Gunston Community,

Dr. Brabrand has sent a letter to the community with the steps FCPS plans to execute moving forward.  Today, April 21, 2020, all students in FCPS schools will continue Distance Learning asynchronously through a variety of formats.  I understand that this experience is not what we were expecting and it is very frustrating, however, our teachers have been working diligently to provide meaningful lessons and activities for the students to engage in asynchronously (not live) until we return to “face-to-face” instruction.

To ensure students have access to assignments and continuity of learning, we would like Gunston students to continue with asynchronous learning by logging onto their Google Classrooms or completing assignments teachers have sent to you.  Students should look for messages, videos, assignments, etc. from their teachers this morning.  There will not be any live sessions for students, so please do not try logging onto Blackboard Collaborate Ultra sessions.  Specialists will provide links to optional activities and assignments for today through their teachers.  Teachers will send an email this morning, so families have easy access to these assignments.  Please allow time for teachers to communicate the students’ assignments for the day.  You should hear from your child’s teacher by 10:00 this morning.  Your child will have flexibility to complete the assignments at the time that works best for your family’s schedule.  Staff will be available to answer questions via email throughout the day.  

We hope that you are well. Please let your students know how much we miss them.  We will continue to celebrate the military child this week with our spirit week.  Please look for links to flipgrids and we hope to see their own responses.

I will provide you with future updates as they are made available.  Thank you for your continued patience and understanding as our staff collaborates to provide meaningful experiences for all of our students.   Please reach out to your teachers if you have any questions about how to access lessons/activities today, as they are dedicated to supporting every child. 

Sincerely,

Kristen Rucinski, Acting Principal, Gunston Elementary School

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Elementary Blackboard Update

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Dear Parents/Guardians,

We apologize for the challenges presented by Blackboard 24/7 this morning. We received notification from the division that Blackboard 24-7 is experiencing some technical issues with log-ins.  We have been assured that Blackboard is actively working to fix it. It may take several attempts to log into 24-7 but once you are able to get into the system, Blackboard Collaborate appears to be functioning properly. 

If your student was not able to participate in this morning’s direct instruction with the teacher, we certainly understand. Students may continue to engage in asynchronous learning opportunities available through google classroom, teacher planned activities, pre-recorded videos, learning packets, and Channel 21 programming.  

Thank you for your patience and understand this morning. Our staff worked hard to have things ready for students today and they appreciate your flexibility!

Warm regards,

Kristen Rucinski, Acting Principal

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 04-16-2020

GovDelivery 1 month 2 weeks ago

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The importance of keepingcontact information up to date.

In this new virtual environment, it’s more important than ever to keep the lines of communication open. If you have a new e-mail address or new phone number, please let us know as soon as possible so you can keep receiving critical information. Also, if you have a concern, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our staff – your child(ren)’s teacher(s), our administrators, our mental health support team, and/or our parent liaisons. You’ll find more information about the last two below.

If you still need assistance with setting up a SIS Parent Vue account or accessing Blackboard 24/7 – which is only possible using the SIS Parent Vue portal – please contact either registrar Cassandra Baltimore at clbaltimore@fcps.edu or parent liaison Tania Muskett at tmmuskett@fcps.edu.

Registration for School Year 2020-2021

Children residing in our boundaries who will turn 5 years old on or before September 30, 2020, as well as students in grades 1-6 transferring from Private/Home Schools or moving into our boundaries prior to the start of the new school year may visit our website and select an appointment to register. Due to the closure of schools, appointments through June are cancelled.  However, we are asking that anyone needing to register new students for the upcoming 2020-2021 school year select an available appointment by visiting our Student Registration page and clicking the button. This will allow our registrar to notify you of any steps that may be taken in the meantime to process the enrollment, get immediate information to you for when we are back up and running and if earlier appointments become available, as well as allow us to adequately prepare for next school year.  Please note that staffing for next school year is supported by early registration. Please do not wait to sign up for an appointment. We appreciate your support in this effort!

All information pertaining to registration can be found here.

Learning Packets Opt Out

The packets are available electronically in FCPS 24/7 Learning so if a parent would like to print the packets at home, they may use the opt out link to stop receiving the printed instructional packets in the mail. Parents will need their student’s ID number and their e-mail address to access the opt out system. Please note, it may take up to 1 week to process the request to opt out. 

Spring Pictures

Are you interested in viewing and purchasing your Spring Pictures?

Follow this link from Lifetouch for more information.

Last Chance Yearbook Online Sales Lifetouch  would like to ensure all students have the chance to order a yearbook despite the recent school closures.

Order your Yearbook online today at ybpay.lifetouch.com 

Gunston's school code: 12465620

Price:  $20.00 (plus additional online options)

Sales Deadline:  April 19, 2020

Yearbooks will be distributed upon school re-opening.

Read-a-Thon Results Top 3 Fundraisers School-wide   ($25 Amazon Gift Card)

Zaria Simmons (K-Backus) $500

 Dahlila Loftus-Poloncak-(4th-Campbell) $490

Isaiah Penn (1st-Berger) $275

 

Top Grade Level Fundraisers   ($20 Amazon Gift Card)

Zaria Simmons (K-Backus)

Isaiah Penn (1st -Berger)

Elizabeth Anning (2nd-Wheeler)

Carter Holbrook (3rd-Daugherty)

Dahlila Loftus-Poloncak (4th-Campbell)

Madeline Osborn (5th-Ford)

Charles Hillbrandt (6th-Durham)

 

Raffle Winner (Kindle Fire and $25 Amazon Gift Card)

Dharmik Parekh (2nd-Gminski)

 

Congratulations and job well done to all those who participated in our      Read-a-thon!  Please contact Stephanie Jones at Steph.long.jones@gmail.com for information regarding how to get your prize!  

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 04-06-2020

GovDelivery 1 month 3 weeks ago

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A Message from the Principals

We are very excited to welcome you back to our “virtual halls” on April 14, 2020.  We have missed you and look forward to engaging with you, laughing with you, working with you and reconnecting as a Gunston family.  The next part of our year may look different, but we have been working hard to create the best possible experience for all our eagles.    The strength of our community will keep us moving on our journey forward.

As we embark on our Distance Learning Plan, we recognize it can present different opportunities and challenges for families and students.  While our number one goal is to continue high-quality instruction, we recognized and considered the challenges and obstacles our students and families may face in the upcoming weeks as we created our new master schedule.  Our teachers have been working on their Blackboard FCPS 24-7 sites, learning how to facilitate lessons online in the Blackboard Collaborate Ultra platform (the FCPS-approved virtual meeting platform), reviewing learning packets provided by FCPS Instructional Services, and planning for their first week of virtual instruction.  Students and families can access this platform from various devices through links on their teacher’s “classroom” via FCPS 24-7 Learning pages.  I am proud of the hard work and creativity our outstanding Gunston teachers continue to demonstrate on behalf of our students and families!  We all appreciate your patience and understanding as our teachers and staff learn how to navigate this new way of learning for the remainder of the school year!   

We hope you enjoy your Spring Break and do something to make you smile!  We can’t wait to see your faces in our virtual classrooms! 

Included in this Gazette, we have provided a visual of what the virtual learning week will look like, links to individual grade level schedules, tips on how to be successful and a kickoff to our learning with a virtual Back to School Event on April 13th.

Fondly,

Kristen Rucinski and Courtney White

Gunston Instructional Schedule

We have created a schedule staggering as many learning blocks possible in order to support families who share devices.  In addition, we provided a variety of choice synchronous learning opportunities from our specialists at different times to best accommodate the need to be flexible.  Please note that the choice opportunities on specific grade level schedules are voluntary, creating an opportunity for students to choose which content they may want to connect with in a live virtual setting.  In addition, our specialists will continue to post asynchronous activities on their Blackboard page for students to access at their leisure.

Master Schedule

 

Individual Grade Level Schedules 

located here

 

The grade level schedules will also posted on grade level Blackboard sites starting April 13th.

 

  • Virtual Teacher Directed Instruction: Teachers will provide one-hour of teacher directed instruction daily Monday through Thursday.  We invite Gunston Eagles for live virtual lessons at the scheduled time. You also have the option to have your student watch the recorded lessons at a time that works best for your family. For the first week of instruction, our focus will be to rebuild relationships and community with our students and to help students learn the routines and tools of virtual learning as we review previous content.
  • Virtual Office Hours: Teachers will be “live” and available for individual or small group student support for one hour each day Monday through Thursday.  Teachers have been asked to respond to any email messages outside of their office hours within one business day.  Friday’s are reserved for Professional Development, teacher planning and meetings with grade level teams, administrators, and staff. On these days, students may engage in independent activities as referenced in the schedule.
  • FCPS Learning Packets: For the first two weeks, learning packets provide review for essential standards for each grade level.  The subsequent packets will provide both new content and review of previously taught concepts. Packets have been mailed to students, and we are aware that the first set of packets arrived late.  The packets are also available electronically in FCPS 24/7 Learning (Blackboard) and can be printed at home. Please use this opt out link to stop receiving the printed instructional packets in the mail. You will need your student’s ID number and your e-mail address to access the opt out system.
  • Independent Learning:   Students should engage in independent learning each day, using the FCPS learning packets, activities or projects provided by teachers, lessons provided by specialists, Channel 21, and health and fitness activities as directed by the family.  There is flexibility in the daily schedule for families to create their own routines that best meet their needs.
  • FCPS cable channels - Instructional programming has been provided throughout the day and may be accessed through a cable television network for Fairfax County residents or via a live web streaming service. Channel 21 provides elementary school content, Channel 25 offers middle school content, and Channel 99 offers high school content. New elementary learning videos have been developed and will continue to be rolled out on Channel 21 specifically to support distance learning, with a special focus on literacy and mathematics.
Virtual Back to School Event Schedule Monday, April 13th

 Teachers will provide Blackboard Collaborate Ultra links by email or on google classroom.  Teachers will share expectations around the schedule and how they will be available during distance learning.  All sessions will be recorded and posted on the grade level Blackboard 24/7 site in case you cannot attend.

Time

Grade Level

12:00pm – 12:30pm

Pre-K & Kindergarten

12:45pm – 1:15pm

Grades 1 & 2

1:30pm – 2:00pm

Grades 3 & 4

2:15pm – 2:45pm

Grades 5 & 6

Digital Learning 101  What is synchronous versus asynchronous learning?

Synchronous Learning

Asynchronous Learning

 

·         Direct interaction between teachers and students in real time

·         Students learn at the same time, often at a scheduled class time

·         Requires students and teachers to be online at a specific time

·         Allows for instant feedback and clarification

·         Checking in, Q & A, discussions and presentations occur at specific times in an online setting

·         Communication is not live in real-time

·         Teachers provide materials (videos, assignments, activities, links) that students can access at different times

·         Students learn at different times throughout the week

·         Flexible and allows students to work at their own pace

·         Feedback is provided to the student through collaborative tools and email

 

 

What resource will my student be working on?
  • FCPS 24-7 Learning/Blackboard
Where will they complete the assignment?

 FCPS 24-7 Learning/Blackboard, Google Classroom, or an alternative application

How will I know what grade they earned?
  • No grades will be assigned to work completed after 3/13/2020. Teachers will provide feedback on the work being completed moving forward.
Essential Tips for Working and Learning from Home

 Here are a few tips to help students find success in this new environment:

  1. Take a deep breath
  2. Continue to maintain family norms and be supportive
  3. Know that you are doing the best you can
  4. Celebrate your accomplishments and progress                                           
 FCPS Resources:

 FCPS 24-7 Learning/Blackboard

 https://www.fcps.edu/resources/technology/fcps-24-7-learning

 

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 04-03-2020

GovDelivery 1 month 4 weeks ago

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Spring Break Monday, April 6 -  Monday, April 13

Students will begin Virtual Distance Learning on Tuesday, April 14, 2020

A Message from the Principals

We hope this message finds you well.  You all have been in our thoughts daily and we wish we could be together in person. We have enjoyed connecting with you on Flipgrid.  We know many of you have had an opportunity to connect with each other and we look forward to joining your classes soon.  As you may have already been informed, FCPS Distance Learning will begin on Tuesday, April 14th.  We are looking forward to resuming instruction through virtual learning. Our teachers are working hard planning and preparing for Distance Learning.  We can’t wait for you to see our faces in our virtual classrooms! 

Also, next week (April 6th-10th) is spring break for all students and staff members.  

Please take this opportunity to connect with your child’s teachers via Parent Meetings on Monday, April 13th.  Think of this parent meeting session as an open house for Distance Learning.  You will receive a guest link to Blackboard Collaborate from your child’s teacher that you will click on to attend the parent meeting.  You may invite your child to join this session via Blackboard Collaborate.  Please be advised that this will not be a one-on-one parent-teacher conference.  It will be a shared guest link for all students’ families in your child’s grade level and you will see all teachers that work with your child’s grade level there.  Parent meeting times are as follows:

                              Distance Learning Virtual Open House Times

Time

Grade Level

12:00pm – 12:30pm

Pre-K & Kindergarten

12:45pm – 1:15pm

Grades 1 & 2

1:30pm – 2:00pm

Grades 3 & 4

2:15pm – 2:45pm

Grades 5 & 6

(All sessions will be recorded on the Blackboard site in case you cannot attend.)

As we move into the coming weeks we want to assure you that in addition to critical news updates we will continue to send our weekly Gunston Gazette to keep you updated on all of our news and announcements. Early next week we will be sharing specific grade level schedules for the Distance Learning which begins on April 14th.  

Please take this opportunity to disconnect and enjoy time together with your family. We miss seeing you every day and remember that we are always here for you.

All the best,

Ms. Rucinski & Mrs. White

Kindergarten Registration Process

With school closure, our Kindergarten Orientation and Registration events originally planned have been canceled. It is uncertain at this time when and if new face-to-face events will be held. We are working on information to be shared virtually over the next few weeks, so please keep checking the registration page on the Gunston Elementary school website regularly. You will also find information there on what documents you need in order to register your child.

COVID-19 Mental Health Resources Available

We know this is a very difficult and challenging time for our families. Mental health and wellness resources and strategies are now included on the COVID-19 update page on the main FCPS website, along with additional information in daily updates. Here’s one article from the Student Health & Wellness page: 7 Ways to Help Ease Your Anxiety Around the Coronavirus.

Social-Emotional Learning April Newsletter 

Created by:

Ms. Ephraim,  School Counselor

Ms. Marques,  School Social Worker

Ms. Campbell, School Psychologist

Please find the (link) here.

 

Learning Packets Opt Out

The packets are available electronically in FCPS 24/7 Learning so if a parent would like to print the packets at home, they may use the opt out link to stop receiving the printed instructional packets in the mail. Parents will need their student’s ID number and their e-mail address to access the opt out system. Please note, it may take up to 1 week to process the request to opt out. 

Spring Pictures

Are you interested in viewing and purchasing your Spring Pictures?

Follow this link from Lifetouch for more information.

April is Autism Awareness Month

In honor of Autism Awareness Month, here is a list of books that includes titles about neuro-diversity, as well as titles that will help children cope with childhood fears. 

Armond Goes to a Party: a Book About Asperger’s and Friendship by Nancy L. Carlson – With help from her coauthor, a middle schooler with Asperger’s syndrome, Carlson explains why a child with a spectrum disorder might be reluctant to attend a friend’s party. Yet with some peer understanding and adult assistance, the challenge can become an opportunity to have fun as well as be a friend.

Benji, the Bad Day, and Me by Sally J. Pla – Sammy is having a very bad day at school and at home until his autistic brother, Benji, finds a way to make him feel better.

Different Like Me by Jennifer Elder – This book profiles twenty famous individuals who may have been autistic, including Albert Einstein, Andy Warhol, Dian Fossey, and Glen Gould.

A Friend for Henry by Jenn Bailey – Henry would like to find a friend at school, but for a boy on the autism spectrum, making friends can be difficult, as his efforts are sometimes misinterpreted, or things just go wrong–but Henry keeps trying, and in the end he finds a friend he can play with.

A Friend Like Simon by Kate Gaynor – The story begins with Matthew greeting his new classmate Simon on his first day at a new school. When Matthew realizes Simon is a little different to his other friends, he’s just not sure if he wants to have ‘a friend like Simon’. However, a school trip to the funfair soon helps to change his mind

I Can Handle It by Laurie Wright – Can Sebastien handle his problems? Of course he can, with the help of a mindful mantra. Chances are whatever his problem may be, he can handle it!

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Elementary

GovDelivery 2 months 1 week ago

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Hi Gunston Families –

Here are quick links to some of the resources that we have recently mentioned in previous communications.

Also please be sure take a peek at our Daily Flipgrid Video that provides a cheery message each morning for your children along with an opportunity for them to respond.

We will continue to support our Eagles and their families through these challenging times.  Our Gunston Eagles will always continue to soar!

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Elementary

GovDelivery 2 months 2 weeks ago

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Greetings Gunston Family,

 

As many of you have seen in Dr. Brabrand’s message, it has been determined that the school will close for students through April 10, 2020 to keep our students and staff healthy.  We will be open Monday, March 16th, for students and staff to access their belongings.  In order to provide continuity of learning, FCPS will promote digital and online resources.  New instructional videos are currently being developed and will be provided on Channel 21 and online at www.fcps.edu.  This work will not be required nor graded.  In addition, students can continue to access resources on our Gunston website such as MyOn and Dreambox.

 

In preparation for school closure, student learning activities will be made available through FCPS 24-7 Learning (Blackboard). Parents can begin to prepare by ensuring they have a Student Information System (SIS) Parent Account and are able to login to FCPS 24-7 Learning: Parent View.  If you do not have a Student Information System (SIS) Parent account, you can register for an account online. An activation key will be sent to you to complete your registration, along with the simple steps to set up your account. Your username and password for the Student Information System(SIS) and FCPS 24-7 Learning: Parent View will be the same.

 

On Monday, we will be distributing a limited number of laptops to FCPS students in grades 3-6 that do not have access to a device at home.  If you need technology for your children to access online learning please email me (krucinski@fcps.edu) this weekend. I will be working with our technology staff to make sure we have laptops available for checkout during the time off.

 

Our school will be distributing laptops to students between 12:00 and 2:30. You may come anytime in that window. Note that you must attend with your student to sign our parent consent form. This will allow us to assign a device to your student. We will also work with your student while on-site to make sure that they can log into the device before you leave. A few things to understand about the process on Monday:

    • There are a limited number of laptops available to our students and they are intended only for those students who have no other means to access learning resources from home. Please do not take a laptop if your student already has access to a computer or tablet at home.
    • The laptop is a temporary loan and will need to be returned to the school as soon as school resumes.
    • If you do not have internet access at home, while you are picking up a laptop, you may fill out the parent permission form for a MiFi wireless internet device. These MiFis will not be available for pickup on Monday, however we will put your request in the queue and let you know if a device is available for pickup at a later date. 
    • Another option for internet access is using the link below from Comcast that can provide access if needed.

https://www.wxyz.com/news/national/coronavirus/comcast-offering-internet-essentials-package-free-for-60-months-during-coronavirus-outbreak?fbclid=IwAR318GCjDvZO0UviyMnIML6j_adHw9hVyGq97Yd366hXtN6u7TbtEBxwPek

 

Food distribution will continue throughout the closures. Meals were served at five schools today, with plans to expand to additional schools next week. We are coordinating with community partners to ensure the locations and timing of food centers and pantries are being communicated with FCPS families. Breakfast will be available from 8:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and lunch will be available from 10:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday at the following locations:

    • Bailey’s Elementary School, 6111 Knollwood Drive, Falls Church
    • Hutchison Elementary School, 13209 Parcher Avenue, Herndon
    • Hybla Valley Elementary School, 3415 Lockheed Boulevard, Alexandria
    • London Towne Elementary School, 6100 Stone Road, Centreville
    • Burke School, 9645 Burke Lake Road, Burke

 

Please take care of yourselves as we manage COVID-19.  Remain calm and remember, the most important deterrent to the transmission of common infections and viruses, including the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is handwashing.  Get the latest information regarding what FCPS is doing to address your concerns regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus) at the following link:  https://www.fcps.edu/news/coronavirus-update

 

The staff and I will miss greeting our Eagles every morning and learning with them daily for the next few weeks. I hope this will be a time of rest and good health for all of our staff and families. Keep reading, keep practicing math and please let me know if there is anything I can do for you in the absence of the school routine.  I am here to support our students and families while we are navigating through these new waters.  Continue to follow the FCPS website, Facebook page, and Twitter account for updates. I will provide them, as appropriate, for our school community as well.  We are grateful for your support and understanding during this difficult time.

 

 

Kristen Rucinski

Acting Principal

Gunston Elementary School

703-541-3600

 

 

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Elementary

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Dance Extravaganza POSTPONED

Based on anticipated low community turnout, Gunston Elementary has decided to reschedule our Dance Extravaganza that was scheduled for Friday, March 13, 2020.  We realize that this may be a disappointment and we will work to reschedule this event at a time when we expect better attendance.  Thank you for your patience and understanding.

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 03-12-2020

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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Information:

As we all know, Coronavirus is an evolving situation. Here at Gunston ES, we are taking the following measures to make sure students and staff stay healthy:

  1. Our teachers are consistently reminding our students to wash their hands, cover their mouths when they yawn/cough/sneeze, avoid touching  their faces, and to stay home if they are sick.
  2. We have added posters, provided by FCPS,  throughout our building that remind us of practices that promote good health.
  3. The majority of classrooms have sinks that are being used as handwashing stations. In addition, students have access to sinks for handwashing in student bathrooms.
  4. The wonderful Gunston ES custodial team continues to follow enhanced instructions for keeping our school clean and disinfected as per FCPS protocols.
  5. Gunston ES is following all FCPS protocols and keeping informed of/enacting all enhanced safety expectations as specified by FCPS.

Our Superintendent has been sending emails to the entire community through News You Choose. In addition, his messages along with other important information are preserved on this website:  https://www.fcps.edu/news/coronavirus-update.

Lastly, the phone number for the Fairfax County Health Department is 703-267-3511. All citizens are encouraged to use this number should you have questions in addition to medical advice you may need from your doctors.

Kristen Rucinski

Acting Principal

Gunston Elementary

Dance Extravaganza POSTPONED

Based on anticipated low community turnout, Gunston Elementary has decided to reschedule our Dance Extravaganza that was scheduled for Friday, March 13, 2020.  We realize that this may be a disappointment and we will work to reschedule this event at a time when we expect better attendance.  Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Kindergarten & New Registration 2020 - 2021 School Year

https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70A094CABAE23A2F58-20192020

Children residing in our boundaries who will turn 5 years old on or before September 30, 2020, as well as students in grades 1-6 transferring from Private/Home Schools or moving into our boundaries prior to the start of the new school year may visit our website and select an appointment to register. Appointments are open now and continue throughout the summer. 

All information pertaining to registration, including eligibility and forms is outlined in the Sign-Up Genius.  See link above.

STEM Night & Science Fair Thursday, March 26th

 

The Gunston Science Fair and STEM Night will be held on March 26th from 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm.  It is going to be a great event so make sure to mark your calendars!   

Save these Dates!                  (remember to keep an eye on our websites)

Gunston Elementary website

Gunston PTA website

  • March 19 - PTA meeting & SOL presentation
  • March 23 & 24 -  Restaurant Nights - Olympians 
  • March 26- STEM Night and Science Fair
  • April 2 - Kindergarten Orientation (4:00 pm-6:00 pm)
  • April 13 - Kindergarten Registration (9:00 am - 3:00 pm)
PTA News & Information Read-A-Thon Ends Sunday 3/15!

Our Read-A-Thon fundraiser and reading challenge will end this Sunday.  Please log your minutes and have donations received by then.  Written reading logs must be turned into the office first thing Monday.  Don't forget the six week 2 benchmarks - 240, 300, and 400 minutes read and $100, $125, and $150 raised to receive raffle tickets for the week 2 raffle to win an Amazon Kindle Fire and $25 Amazon gift card!

Restaurant Days at Olympians - March 23 & 24

Mark your calendars for PTA's next restaurant event!  Olympians family restaurant in Alexandria will be hosting a two day, all day, restaurant fundraiser!  Carry out as well as dine in counts.  Please plan to visit to help raise funds for our PTA.

2020-2021 PTA Officers Needed

Our PTA is seeking nominations for President, Vice President, and Secretary for next year’s PTA Board.  Without a Board, PTA will not be able to offer all of the events and opportunities that it provides to support our Eagles and enhance their elementary school experience.  If you’re interested in serving, please reach out to ptagunston@gmail.com.

Health & Wellness Tip of the Week

Happy Sleep Awareness Week 2020! March 8-14. 

This annual event begins at the start of Daylight Saving Time when most Americans lose an hour of sleep. The change to Daylight Saving Time reminds us to make beneficial changes in our sleep routines to improve our sleep health. 

The average U.S. adult feels tired during the day at least three out of seven days each week. More than a quarter of us feel tired five to seven days a week per SleepFoundation.org.   

Many people who are tired during the week experience some unpleasant side effects such as headaches, irritability, feeling unwell, difficulty focusing, and lack of performing at work. 

Getting enough sleep is key to a good night's rest. For adults between the ages of 18 and 64, we recommend seven to nine hours per night

  • Preschoolers should get 10-13 hours of sleep
  • School age children: 9-11 hours
  • Teenagers: 8-10 hours

Here are some measures you can take to ensure a better night's rest:

            -maintain a comfortable bedroom temperature

            -minimize exposure to noise and natural light while you sleep

            -avoid caffeine or alcohol before bedtime.

comfortable mattress, supportive pillow, and breathable sheets also go a long way.

 

Retrieved from https://www.sleepfoundation.org/press-release/sleep-awareness-week-2020

PTA Meeting - March 19

Our next PTA meeting will be held at 6pm in the cafeteria.  Dinner will be provided and we will have a presentation about SOL testing.  Whether your student is facing SOLs this year or in the coming years, please join us to learn more about this important subject!

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

Gunston Gazette 03-05-2020

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A Letter from the Principals

Happy March!

March is a busy month with many opportunities for students and families to come together.  We hope you are enjoying participating in our Read-a-Thon.  Please take this opportunity to snuggle up with good books and enjoy this time together and read your family favorites.  Our Dance Extravaganza is right around the corner, the students have been working hard and are ready to perform on March 13th.

Please come join us at the PTA meeting and stay for a presentation afterwards on how you can support your child with the state standards of learning assessments in grades three through six.  We are looking forward to STEM Night and reviewing all of our young scientists' projects.  As the student interim reports come home this week, please take a moment to review them with your child and celebrate their growth and help them set a goal for the end of the quarter.

In order to ensure the safety of all our children, please remember to follow our drop off and dismissal procedures.  Your child must be picked up or dropped off at our Kiss and Ride line and not from the street, unless you are escorting them into the building and signing them in.  We hope to see you at our events this month.

Ms. Rucinski and Mrs. White

Daylight Savings Time begins on Sunday, March 8

Don't forget to set your clocks forward one hour on this day!

Dance Extravaganza Friday, March 13th

Grade 5           8:45 am – 9:30 am

Grade 6           9:30 am – 10:15 am

Grade 4          10:15 am –11:00 am 

Grade 3          12:05 pm – 12:45 pm

Grade 1          12:50 pm – 1:30 pm

Kindergarten   1:30 pm – 2:10 pm

Grade 2           2:20 pm – 3:00 pm

The students have been practicing their rhythm, timing and coordination; learning how to choreograph a dance, folk, line and novelty dances from many countries. Parents are invited to watch, take pictures and participate! 

Lost & Found is  overflowing! Please have your student check for lost jackets and coats

 

Kindergarten & New Registration 2020 - 2021 School Year

https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70A094CABAE23A2F58-20192020

Children residing in our boundaries who will turn 5 years old on or before September 30, 2020, as well as students in grades 1-6 transferring from Private/Home Schools or moving into our boundaries prior to the start of the new school year may visit our website and select an appointment to register. Appointments are open now and continue throughout the summer. 

All information pertaining to registration, including eligibility and forms is outlined in the Sign-Up Genius.  See link above.

STEM Night & Science Fair Thursday, March 26th

 

The Gunston Science Fair and STEM Night will be held on March 26th from 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm.  Science Fair registrations should already have been turned in (if students still want to participate, they should submit their registration as soon as possible).  There will be concessions for sale, different STEM organizations present, and our Eagles science fair projects will be on display.  It is going to be a great event so make sure to mark your calendars!   More information about the event is forthcoming so stay tuned!!

Save these Dates!                  (remember to keep an eye on our websites)

Gunston Elementary website

Gunston PTA website

  • March 13 - Dance Extravaganza (see schedule above)
  • March 19 - PTA meeting & SOL presentation
  • March 23 & 24 -  Restaurant Nights - Olympians 
  • March 26- STEM Night and Science Fair
  • April 2 - Kindergarten Orientation (4:00 pm-6:00 pm)
  • April 13 - Kindergarten Registration (9:00 am - 3:00 pm)
PTA News & Information Read-A-Thon Has Started

Our Read-A-Thon fundraiser, which will raise funds for PTA and encourage our students to get reading, started this week!  

The Read-A-Thon is a time for us to help foster a love of reading in our Eagles!  Minutes read can be logged electronically via the website noted below.  Students can earn prizes for certain minute goals, with an overall goal of 400 minutes during the 2 week challenge.   

Our Read-A-Thon is also our PTA's second biggest fundraiser, with a goal of $6,000!  We need to raise funds to support important upcoming and ongoing PTA funded things like our reading program, end-of-year recognition event for student government chorus and patrol, staff and teacher appreciation activities, requests for classroom items, our Science Fair and Stem Night, and our fun filled field day!

So please, join us in this challenge!  Registration is simple: 

  1. Visit https://www.readformyschool.com/register/
  2. Select sign up as a student 
  3. Enter the team invite code you received in the Read-A-Thon packet sent home (email GunstonEaglesRead@gmail.com with the name of your student and their teacher if you need your code)
  4. Start logging minutes and raising funds!
2020-2021 PTA Officers Needed

Our PTA is seeking nominations for President, Vice President, and Secretary for next year’s PTA Board.  Without a Board, PTA will not be able to offer all of the events and opportunities that it provides to support our Eagles and enhance their elementary school experience.  If you’re interested in serving, please reach out to ptagunston@gmail.com.

Health & Wellness Tip of the Week

Drinking enough water can have numerous benefits.

Surprisingly, it can boost the number of calories you burn.

Two studies note that it can increase metabolism by 24–30% over 1–1.5 hours. This can amount to 96 additional calories burned if you drink 8.4 cups (2 liters) of water per day 

The optimal time to drink it is before meals. One study showed that downing 2.1 cups (500 ml) of water 30 minutes before each meal increased weight loss by 44%.

PTA meeting 3/19 featuring presentation on SOLs!

Our next PTA meeting will be held at 6pm in the cafeteria.  Dinner will be provided and we will have a presentation about SOL testing.  Whether your student is facing SOLs this year or in the coming years, please join us to learn more about this important subject!

Restaurant Days at Olympians March 23 & 24 

Mark your calendars for PTA's next restaurant event!  Olympians family restaurant in Alexandria will be hosting a two day, all day, restaurant fundraiser!  Carry out as well as dine in counts.  Please plan to visit to help raise funds for our PTA!

10100 Gunston Road, Lorton VA 22079 | Main Phone: 703.541.3600
Clinic: 703.541.3610 | Email Attendance | Web | Twitter

46 minutes 53 seconds ago
Gunston Elementary School News and announcements
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