February eNewsletter Page 01 February eNewsletter Page 02 February eNewsletter Page 03 February eNewsletter Page 04 February eNewsletter Page 05 February eNewsletter Page 06 February eNewsletter Page 07 February eNewsletter Page 08 February eNewsletter Page 09          February eNewsletter Page 10


During the month of February our students will be able to participate in the Read-A-Thon, acronym of “RAT”.  Please look for information sent home for you to peruse and decide if you can help our school out with this fundraiser.  Ware teachers often collaborate with each other sharing strategies of how to motivate students to become better readers. The most often area of concern is fluency, defined as the ability to read with speed, accuracy, and proper expression in order to understand what they read. Fluency is important because it bridges between word recognition and comprehension. It allows students time to focus on what the text is saying.


Fluency is built on the practice of reading aloud.  Here are a few suggestions for improving reading fluency: *Read aloud to children: this provides a model of fluent reading. *Have children listen and follow along with audio recordings. *Practice sight words using playful activities: our teachers would gladly provide you with site words for practice. *Do paired reading: parent reads/child reads. *Try echo reading: parent reads short amount/child re-reads what they just heard. *Do choral reading: reading together at the same speed. *Do repeated reading: a wonderful way to use your child’s favorite text. *Keep reading the same story over and over till no errors.


Students need to become automatic with text so they can pay attention to the meaning. Ask your child these types of questions: What types of library books are they checking out?  How are the Reading Counts tests going for them? Are they completing reading homework and sharing what they are reading?  Sometimes students get into a reading “rut”.  They tend to keep reading the same types of books.  It’s not a bad thing to read the same types of books or even choosing books from the same author, but know that to improve their reading; a variety of books or magazines will certainly help them do just that. You are more than welcome to come in and visit our fabulous library, where the staff can assist you in finding that treasured item to increase the reader in your child.


Think of all the technical reading that is required of you as an adult.  The “how to put the windshield wipers on your car” or the “steps needed to bake your family’s favorite cookies” are examples of technical reading that require someone to understand and follow specific directions.  Our teachers offer many opportunities to engage readers by bringing books and other forms of reading materials into the classroom.  They have a goal to not only motivate students to read for school purposes but more importantly to read for enjoyment. Communicating and comprehending what was read is encouraged in each of our classrooms throughout the entire day. Understanding and being able to read for meaning is the first to change how students will perform in all other academic areas.


With this current deployment and rotation of our dear soldiers and family members, please know that we are taking the BEST care of your children. For those family members here at Fort Riley, stay involved and connected to our school. This sends a clear message that we all believe in our children and value the importance of education and are supportive of each other’s efforts.


Dana Williamson

Assistant Principal




My how these kindergarteners are growing! This third quarter of the school year is very exciting as many kindergarteners are catching on to new concepts and building on the skills we’ve learned thus far. One area in which you may have noticed the most significant growth is writing. Many kindergarteners are beginning to use the letter sounds and blend, also how to form words and sentences.

They have learned how to write to tell stories and writing to each others how to do something.  You can help foster your child’s writing skills by having him/her write a letter or note to someone they care about.  Imagine a loved one getting a handwritten valentine from their favorite kindergartner!  What a treasure!

We are delving deeper into the world of reading with new shared stories. If you haven’t noticed yet, the stories are getting longer and are including more difficult words. It is very important that your child read them every night and complete the activities on the Read and Respond sheet. Continued reading of well-practiced story is a great way, not only to practice sight words, but build fluency as well.  Make sure you let your kindergartner know what an amazing job he/she is doing with their reading and how proud you are!  Reading in kindergarten…it’s so exciting!

In math we will continue reinforcing mathematical concepts and number sense.  We are learning how to make bigger numbers out of smaller numbers and how smaller numbers can be combined to make greater numbers. We will also work on beginning addition and subtraction, the kids are very excited about!

February also brings Valentine’s Day. Each classroom will have a party with a valentine exchange.   You will receive more information about individual classroom activities.



Kindergarten Teachers Rock!

Mr. Scruggs

Miss Willems

Mrs. Conder

Mrs. Clinesmith

Miss Bogen

ESS Teacher

Mrs. Felton


First grade has started the New Year off great!!  We have many exciting challenges and events coming up.  February is Dental Health Month.  We will be talking about Dental Hygiene and how to take proper care of our teeth.  This month also gives us the opportunity to learn about Presidents’ Day.  Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching us.  Each classroom will have their own party so please be looking for notes going home.

Along with all of the celebrations and events in February we must remember to stay focused on all of the many skills that your child will be learning.  In math we will be working on place value, greater than/less than, associative and commutative properties, understanding 10 more and 10 less than a target number, ordering numbers, and counting on from a target number.  In reading, your child’s stories will continue to increase in difficulty.

Please continue reading with your child and returning their Read and Respond forms each night.  The regular support at home shows with the success that your child has in school.  Parent/Teacher Conferences will be coming up in March so please be on the look-out for information regarding conferences. Again, thank you for all of your support and making sure that your child is at school on time each and every day!!


Your First Grade Team!

 Ms. Schoen

Mrs. Scott

Miss Francis

Miss Dreher

ESS Teacher

Mrs. Felton 


We are finally back in the swing of things for the third quarter! We have a lot of exciting activities to look forward to in the month of February!

We will be jumping into new math concepts at the beginning of the month. Students will be learning about equal groups, arrays, and repeated addition.  We will move from writing friendly letters to opinion letters. Students will learn to use persuasive language in their writing. In science we will begin our exploration of solids and liquids.  Towards the end of the month, we’ll start our study of economics in preparation for Market Day on March 22.  More information on this exciting learning opportunity will be shared at conferences.  As always, please remember to read with your child for 20 minutes every night, and make sure they are completing their Read and Respond forms.

Second grade students will have their annual musical on Thursday, February 7th at 6:00 p.m. in the Ware auditorium. The students have been working hard in their music classes to prepare something very special. Please join us that evening to celebrate all their hard work.

We will also celebrate Valentine’s Day on the 14th. Look for more information coming from your child’s teacher as that day approaches.


Your Second Grade Team

Mrs. Larson

Miss Buchanan

Miss Kern

Mrs. Schmidt

Miss Heigert

ESSD Teacher

Mrs. Parker


February has come so fast for all of us.  It is so hard to believe that in a month we will be wrapping up the third quarter of third grade!

We just finished up learning about area in math class.  We were so impressed with all the kids!  It was a very hard concept and they used perseverance and did a wonderful job with the hard skills.  We are now working on fractions.  Students are finding equivalent fractions and comparing fractions.  If you ever want to help them with their math, Zearn is a great resource.  The students know how to log in and it teaches the lessons exactly as we do.

Please continue to read with your child each night and have them fill out their read and respond after reading for 20 minutes.  We have been taking some practice skill based tests on the computer to start prepping for the state assessments in April.  These are short tests of about 5-8 comprehension questions over a story that they read.

Students have been extremely engaged with science lately.  We have been diving deep into motion and matter.  All the classes have been doing “investigations” to test different scientific questions regarding motion and matter.  Our next topic coming up is life sciences.

We are very aware that this is the season for colds and flus, but it is very important that your child is at school and on time when they are healthy.  We learn so much at school every day and it really hurts them academically if they miss the instruction as they cannot make up the direct instruction time they missed while gone.

We are so very lucky to have all of you as parents and thank you for your active engagement in your child’s learning.


Third Grade Rules!

Mrs. Kelly

Mrs. Adams

Mrs. Oleen

Miss Hansen

ESS Teacher

Mrs. Parker 


The Ware Bear fourth grade is a fun place to learn and grow right now!  In Math we continue to learn about fractions.  We are learning to compare, add, and subtract fractions.  Students really need to be able to reason about their answers and think critically when solving word problems.  The more “how” and “why” questions you can ask them about their math, the better they will become at reasoning and explaining.  Please continue to have students work on their math at home when possible.  We have many websites that we use with the students that are standards based and will help them even if you only have 10-15 minutes to practice.

In Social Studies we are working on learning about the states and cultures of the Midwestern part of the United States. In writing we are learning to write letters to someone in order to give them advice or to ask for information.  In Science we are focusing on all the different types of Energy. Start asking your student questions in your everyday life about how electricity and energy is impacting the way we live. We will continue to be do many hands on lessons with the students to really get their minds thinking about science in a new and practical way!

As we know, February brings with it Valentine’s Day. Look for information regarding celebrations from your student’s homeroom teacher. Please consider other students’ feelings and make sure that if your child brings cards that they bring for the whole class.  We want this to be a fun and memorable time for all!

Please let us know if there is anything we can help with to make it easier for you or your student.


Fourth Grade Rocks!

Mrs. Hilton

Miss Maley

Mrs. Kaus

Mrs. Williams

ESSD Teacher

Miss William 


Time seems to be flying by here in fifth grade, and February looks to be another busy month.  In math we will be continuing our work on fractions with a focus on using multiple strategies to solve problems.  In reading, we will continue to practice skills that increase reading comprehension and fluency in many kinds of text.  The skills practiced at school also need to be practiced at home with nightly reading and respond homework.  Fifth graders also have access to many online resources to practice skills in all academic areas.  These are linked to our fifth grade page on Ware’s website.  Please encourage your student to share these links with you!

In Social Studies, students move into the colonization of the Americans while the study of mixtures and solutions continues in science. Finally, students are sharing their opinions as they write persuasive letters. Encourage them to share their research with you at home!

February will also include several special events. Fifth grade classrooms will be holding Valentine’s Day celebrations on Thursday, February 14th. Please watch for future notes being sent home with your student about this and other events!

As always, daily student attendance is crucial, especially as we begin gearing up for state testing.  Thank you for your continued support in this matter. We wish everyone an enjoyable February!

Your Fifth Grade Team

Mrs. Deville

Miss Jimerson

Miss Huneycutt

ESSD Teacher

Miss William


In the second semester, USD 475 schools conduct motor skills tests in physical education classes. These skills will be assessed through observation during class activities and will be reflected on third quarter grade cards. The skills are grade-level specific and they include gross motor skills such as jumping rope, dribbling, and kicking.

As we get closer to the spring and “outdoor” weather, we encourage you to start planning recreational activities for your children. Better yet, volunteer to help assist with those recreational activities! It might be playing on a sports team such as baseball, softball, volleyball, soccer, or basketball. If you prefer individual sports then consider tennis, swimming, wrestling, golf, or gymnastics lessons. Non-competitive pastimes such as dance, camping, fishing, or even music lessons can also be fun on their own or in addition to competitive-type sports. All of these activities can teach valuable social-emotional skills that carry over into other facets of children’s lives. The more opportunities and experiences that we can provide for your children, the more likely they are to reach their potential in life. Active children are happy children, and happy children become confident and resilient adults! Keep your eyes open on social media, news outlets, or search the Fort Riley MWR website:


Fort Riley Youth Sports and Fitness Programs:



Mr. Derek Scott    derekscott@usd475.org

Miss Mariah Wheaton    jessicawheaton@usd475.org


Please join us on Thursday, February 7, 2019 as the second graders present their musical program “I Love You”. Their performance will be at 6:00 p.m. on the Ware auditorium. They will share with you several musical Valentine Day’s wishes.

All classes will be learning about different instruments, their families and the types of groups that they are played in during the month of February. Students will have the opportunity to play a variety of classroom instruments, found instruments as well as recorder and ukulele for the older students.

There are several performances second semester and more information will be sent home with students as their performances get closer. On Feb. 2, eight Ware fifth graders will represent our school as part of the North Central Kansas Music Educators Association Elementary Honor Choir at the Junction City Middle School. They will be part of a choir with over 100 members and will perform their concert at 12:00 p.m. Second grade students will have their performance on Feb. 7; first grade will perform on April 18; and kindergarten will perform on May 9. All grade-level performances are at 6:00 p.m. in the Ware elementary auditorium.

The fourth and fifth grade students in the 21st Century After-School Program will present the musical, “James and the Giant Peach, Jr.” on Thursday, April 4. The cast has been selected and they are rehearsing after school to prepare this musical.



Mrs. Susan Gillespie                      Miss Julie Swartz

SusanGillespie@usd475.org                JulieSwartz@usd475.org


We will have our Scholastic Book Fair returning during parent teacher conferences in March.  Our Scholastic Book Fair is a reading event that brings the books kids want to read right into our school. It’s a wonderful selection of engaging and affordable books for every reading level. Please make plans to visit our Book Fair and be involved in shaping your child’s reading habits. The theme is “Dino-Mite Book Fair: Stomp, Chomp, and Read!”


Book Fair dates and Times:  Tuesday, March 5        3:30 – 7:30

                                                            Wednesday, March 6  3:30 – 7:30

                                                            Thursday, March 7      3:30 – 5:30


Please continue encouraging your student(s) in grades 1-5 to read a “dot book” and take a Reading Counts test.  A “dot book” illustrates the Lexile Level of the book.  It also indicates that there is a Reading Counts test available for them to take on the computer at school.  To learn more about reading counts, explore hmhco.com/readingcounts.

Veronica Wait – Library Media Specialist

Mrs. Kidwell & Mrs. Lopez – Library Clerks


February typically brings very cold temperatures. Please take extra precautions to keep your children and yourselves safe and healthy. Dress in layers, this will keep you warm and dry. If your child suffers from winter nosebleeds, try using a cold air humidifier in his/her room for the night. Saline nose drops/spray may help keep the tissue moist. Colds and flu are common in the winter. Remind your child to wash his/her hands frequently, and to sneeze and cough into the bend of his/her elbow to help reduce the spread of germs.

I mailed immunization and school physical letters to those who are non-compliant. For those of you who responded THANK YOU, very much! For those of you who have not, please do so as soon as possible.

Just a reminder that if your child comes home in clothing borrowed from school, please wash them and return them to the Nurse Office.  You can keep the underwear.

I am continuing to accept donations of clothing and new underwear. The sizes I need most are boys 5-7 pants, and size small and extra small boys underwear, 4-6 girls’ pants and size 4 girls underwear.   Socks of all sizes would be appreciated as well.

Ware parents are the “BEST!”

Karen Roles

School Nurse



This month in Speech and Language, we will be spending time targeting our students’ goals while simultaneously addressing the social communication skills required for cooperation. We will be discussing problem solving, compromising, and respectfulness while participating in activities that give students the opportunity to practice these skills. One of our favorite activities is the cooperative game Hoot Owl Hoot, in which all students are working together to achieve the same goal. We love seeing our students become better teammates while also working on their speech and language goals.


Laura Thompson                                                Roddaija Turner

Speech—Language Pathologist       Speech-Language Pathology Assistant





The Ware Bears have started off the 2019 year well! I am proud of how each Ware Bear has come back ready to jump right back into learning! In January we focused on developing a growth mindset and learning how our brains can grow through perseverance. We also learned about SMART goals and how setting goals can help us grow and achieve.

The month of February will begin a new focus. Kindergarten through second grade will learn about emotions and proper coping skills when needing to manage big emotions.  Third grade will be learning about empathy using “lens of love” and how immediately making judgements can be harmful. Grades fourth and fifth will continue small group lessons on identifying emotions and regulating emotions properly. I enjoy working with each grade level and seeing connections being made from school to home. Continue to encourage your child to use their words when big emotions are present and help give them age appropriate vocabulary when possible.


kathrynwilliams@usd475.org or 785-717-4706



Ware Mart will be open on Fridays before school.  Student Council sells school supplies with prices ranging from $0.25 to $5.00.  All profits will be used for school projects and community service by the Student Council.  All Ware Bears may shop, but must eat breakfast first.


Spirit Day: February 1st – 100th day of school


A friendly reminder from Student Support:


Students are continuing to arrive at school before adequate supervision is available. Please remember that students who eat breakfast in the cafeteria may arrive no earlier than 7:30 am and students who do not eat breakfast in the cafeteria may arrive no earlier than 7:40 am.

Additionally, outdoor lineup will still continue throughout the winter as weather permits. Please dress your child accordingly. A heavy jacket, hat and gloves are recommended.