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    Curriculum Handbook


    Desert Mountain 

    Ms. Jeffer


    DM 623 445 3500 

    Attendance # 623 445 3590

    Ms. Jeffer 623 445 3535   




    Goals for the Year                                                                                               

    ·         To create a safe, comfortable and inclusive environment for students that allows for healthy learning to take place.

    ·         Differentiate instruction in order to encompass the varied learning styles in the classroom.

    ·         Challenge each student individually and to their fullest potential.

    ·         Model and encourage students to engage in social behaviors that meet the goals of a good citizen and leader.

    ·         Work collaboratively with students, parents, teachers and other school members to make this school year enjoyable.



    Specials 9:45-10:30

    Week  1 and 2  P.E.

    Week 3 and 4 Art

    Week 5 and 6 Music

    Week  7 and 8  P.E.


    Look for your weekly schedule in the newsletter each Friday. 

    Right Hand Grip

    Left Hand Grip


    Kindergarten Curriculum Night

    Ms. Jeffer




    The Kindergarten team at Desert Mountain School believes in a balanced approach to teach reading skills.  We offer a variety of phonics activities which incorporate the phonological and orthographic awareness processes.  We accomplish this in a variety of engaging activities that meets each student where they are at and helps them maximize their learning experience.  We will study a few letters a week to reinforce writing and phonetic skills.  We will send some letter cards home soon to practice naming letters and the sounds the letters make.  It is essential that you practice these cards at home.  Please keep these cards in a safe place so they are not accidentally discarded.  The teacher will watch for a variety of cues from the children to know when they are ready to be worked with individually to read short phonics books.  Please do not compare your child with other children in their reading development.  Learning to read should be like learning to talk.  It should be an enjoyable process that develops over time.  Putting pressure on children can create reading problems in the future.


    Social Studies

    We will be learning about 5 different concepts throughout the year utilizing songs and have hands-on activities that will further their understanding.

    The 5 concepts are:

    Children Being a Good Citizen; Learning about rules and why they are important

    Me and my Map; where and how do people live in other places of the world

    Holidays and Traditions

    Historical Figures and American Symbols

    Goods and Services


    It’s a Small World

    We will be “traveling” to a different country each week to learn about the diversity of languages, food, games, and music around our world.  Learning about various cultures will help the children learn about our planets’ geography, how people live, how people are different and how they are the same.  This is a wonderful opportunity for your child to learn about diversity in a fun way.  We will visit places like France, China, Australia, South Africa, Brazil, Antarctica, Italy, Iran and Greece.  If you have been to a country and would like to share about your experience, please sign up at curriculum night.


    The Kindergarten team at Desert Mountain believes in hands-on math experiences for young children.  We practice counting by ones, twos, fives, and tens.  We encourage children to count to 100 and beyond.  You can help at home by counting.  The children need to recognize and write the numbers to 20 by the end of the year.  Most of them will recognize and write numbers to 100.   Most of the math instruction and activities will actively engage the students mentally and physically, we will use hands-on materials, or complete activities on the smartboard in class. 



    We will learn four main concepts through songs, stories, games, activities and hands-on experiments. Our four main units are: 


    Patterns in the sky

    Living Things

    Sounds and Light


    Special Classes

    The children visit the special area teachers for 45 minutes each afternoon and 30 minutes on Friday.  The children really enjoy these new experiences.  

    *PE Day:Please make sure your child wears appropriate shoes to play and run in everyday even if we don’t have P.E. that day.  Flip flops are not appropriate shoes!



    We will have Library time once a week.  The students will be able to check out 1 book a week.  Be sure to have them bring them back Friday so they can check out a new book that Monday.


    Friday Folders

    We will send home the folder with all the week’s important papers & homework.   PLEASE be sure to check and empty these folders each weekend and RETURN folder with any notes, permission slips, etc. on MONDAY!  The weekly newsletter will be emailed out to you.  It will also be available on our school website. 



    We will have a quick snack every afternoon.  Each child may bring in a healthy snack each day (No Candy).   We will try to keep graham crackers and/or saltine crackers on hand in case anyone forgets their snack.



    Birthdays are important to young children.  On your child’s birthday we will make sure your child feels very special.  They will get to wear a special sticker/crown.  The birthday child may bring a special prepackaged treat from the store on their birthday to share with the class.  Nothing homemade. (No cakes please). Please send a note or email a few days before the birthday to let me know and I  will be having a special treat for that day.  Parties will take place in the afternoon at afternoon recess.  Parents are asked to send in the treat in the morning with their student. 


    Parent Pick-Up Schedule

    Please make sure we have your child’s permanent pick up schedule.  If this schedule must change, we must have it in writing.  Please try to maintain your routine as changes (and confusion) can upset small children.  Also, if your routine changes at the last minute, please call the front office at 623 445 3500 so they can contact us directly.


    Star of the Week

    Each week one child will be the “Star of the Week.”  When it is your child’s turn, please help him/her make a special poster that has up to 10 pictures of his/her life so far!  They can bring their poster any time during the week, but most prefer to bring it on Monday.   We will talk about their poster and display it for the week.  The Star of the week can also bring in a show and tell items to share each day during their special week. 


    Literature bags

    To promote a love of reading literature bags will be sent home with children occasionally.  The children look forward to having these bags!  Oftentimes the bags contain a special character that goes with the book or a fun activity to complete.  Please enjoy these bags with your child and remind him/her to return them the next day so that someone else can have a turn.


    Reading Log

    Each month a “Reading Log” will be sent home.  Please list the titles of the books that you have read to your child or that they have read themselves.   When the reading log is completed, please return it to school with your child.  Your child will then have the opportunity to get a prize for completing their reading log.


    Classroom Volunteers

    If you would like to volunteer in the classroom you will need to attend one of our volunteer trainings that will occur on  

    Sept 20th 9:30 am

    November 29th 9:30 am

    Jan 16th 5:00 pm.

    If you would like to volunteer, please let me know what day(s) you are available and how often you would like to volunteer.  (Weekly, bi-weekly, monthly…)  If you prefer to prepare materials at home, let me know that too!  We will start having volunteers after the first quarter.




    For urgent messages you may call the front office (623-445-3500) or leave a message with Ms. Jeffer (623-445-3535).  Our voice mail system is sometimes delayed by a few hours so urgent messages should always go to the front office.  Ms. Jeffer- Susan.Jeffer@dvusd.org



    If your child is ill, please keep them at home!  We each have 47 children using pencils, crayons, scissors etc…each day.  To prevent a lot of kids from getting sick, it is imperative that sick kids stay home.  We clean the tables and door handles weekly to prevent illness.  If your child has a fever or is throwing up they MUST stay home for 24 hours after the fever breaks or the nausea stops.  If we can all do our part, we’ll have a super healthy environment here at school! 



    Please let us know if your child will be absent from school in advance if possible.  We will not provide work to be done while the student is gone unless there is a special circumstance.  Please try to schedule doctor and dentist appointments before or after school hours.

    If your child is tardy, he/she will need to provide us with a late pass.  You must check in with the front office to get the late pass. 



    Safety is a huge issue with 5 year olds.  Please have your child wear shoes that are safe to run and jump in.  All shoes should tie, Velcro, or buckle securely.  Flip flops, high heels and cowboy boots are NOT safe to play in.  These shoes should be saved for special dress up occasions.  Clothes should be comfortable to play in also.  We get messy in Kindergarten so please send clothes that can get dirty.  (We guarantee we will get dirty at times)!!  Parking lot safety is important also.  Children always need to be escorted by an adult when crossing the parking lot.






    Star Student Week

    The schedule below is only an example of what your child can do for his/her special week. If you would like to do something else just let me know.  Have fun!

    In our classroom, each child should always feel special!

    Every child will have one week this year to share his/her “special” self with the class. A parent will need to gather items and bring or send them to school on the Monday of your child’s special week and collect it again on Friday. There is a space available on a wall and a small counter area for a display of a few of your child’s special possessions.

    Your child may bring:

           Favorite stuffed animal or toy

           Favorite photos of family, friends, house, pets, vacations, etc.

          Favorite food or treat to share with the class on Friday


    Use your imagination and surprise the class! Arrangements can be made with me for parent and pet visits during your child’s special week.

    A note will be sent home to notify you when it is your child’s special week. There will also be a notification in the newsletter.

    Thank you,

    Ms. Jeffer