PWE Hints and Tips
5th Grade Trip: A PTA sponsored all-day science field trip to Collin County Adventure Camp in Anna, TX just for 5th graders.http://collincountyadventurecamp.org/
6th Grade Graduation: Takes place during the school day during the last week of school.
Background Check: All school volunteers must have a current RISD background check on file. This includes: class parties, field trips and any volunteering you do at school. You must renew this every school year. It can take up to 2 weeks to process, so do it now to be sure you're ready when duty calls.
Boo Hoo/Yahoo: After drop-off on the first day of school, parents congregate at the Starbucks on Arapaho. Join other moms and dads to celebrate or cry on each other’s shoulders.
Book Fair Week: Scholastic books available for sale in the library to students, parents and staff during one week in the fall (no more Spring book fair). A Family Night is held on the Thursday evening of this week in conjunction with a PTA General Meeting. Book fairs are PTA-funded, and go to support the PTA and all that it funds.
Box Tops: A PTA sponsored class contest to raise funds for the school. You earn cash for PWE by clipping Box Tops coupons from hundreds of participating products and turning them into the school. Box Tops are collected once per semester. http://boxtops4education.com
Buddy Fun Day: A PTA sponsored school-wide field day held the last week of school with games, relays, a sno-cone truck and music.
Carnival Craft Workshop: A free craft workshop held afterschool one day the week of carnival which allows students to prepare centerpieces used during the event.
Carnival: A PTA fundraiser held in the beginning of October open to the community with games, food and entertainment.
Class Clown Contest: A carnival fundraiser where students are encouraged to purchase a foam clown nose. Classes with 100% student participation are featured in the yearbook wearing their clown noses. All who wear their nose to carnival receive a special surprise.
Clothes Closet: RISD Council of PTA’s clothing donation program. This is a wonderful program for which you can donate your used clothing or your time to help RISD students in need “shop” in the Clothes Closet for new clothes. A drop box in located in the Hug Zone.https://risdpta.membershiptoolkit.com/clothescloset
College and Career Week: Held in May, the week focuses on encouraging children to create goals for both higher education and careers of interest. Parent speakers are invited to come and talk to students about their professional careers.
Dads and Donuts: A PTA sponsored event at the Coit/Campbell Home Depot. Dads and other male role-models are invited to participate in the building workshop and enjoy donuts, coffee and juice with their kid(s). This is typically held on a Saturday morning in late Spring.
Dads Club: A group of PWE dads that help with morning drop-off and make themselves available for various volunteer needs throughout the year. Members have the opportunity to sign up to be "DAD for a Day" at the school. The group usually gathers socially for a happy hour 2 times a semester. Morning Drop-Off Instructions
Edline: A convenient way to keep up-to-date on classroom announcements and assignments, as well as calendar updates related to the classroom, testing, school and district events. http://www.risd.org/Group/Parents/EdlineforParents.html
End-of-Year Party: End-of-Year parties are organized and executed by Room Parents. They are held the last day of school from 11:30 – 12:30. The cafeteria is closed on the last day of school, so this is a low-key party centered around lunch brought in by Room Parents. Volunteers must have a current RISD background check on file in order to attend.
Enrichment Clusters: Each grade and class partakes in an enrichment study of certain special interests selected by the class (kinder) or multi-age interest groups (grades 1-6). This occurs in the fall and spring, and information will be sent out by your classroom teacher.
Enterprise City: A district-wide program with a field trip for 6th grade students designed to teach students economic concepts.
Environmental Center: To meet the goal of curriculum support, the Environmental Studies Center provides a safe place for each student to explore scientific concepts in a natural setting through direct experience and the use of appropriate technology. Grades K-6 go to the Environmental Studies Center once a year.
Feed the Panther: A PTA fundraiser in a “write a check – make no effort” format. Families can donate at any time online or via check/Tuesday Folder beginning with the online supply sale in mid-July.
Field Trip Shirt: PWE PTA provides a free t-shirt to every student to wear on Field Trips. Sizes are requested at the beginning of the year and delivered to the homeroom teachers for distribution by mid-October. These can also serve as Spirit Shirts and students are encouraged to wear them every Friday.
Field Trips: Each grade level has 2-4 field trip per year which varies by grade level. Sometimes parent chaperones are needed and other times not. Parent chaperones will need to provide their own transportation and have a current RISD background check on file. Students are required to wear their PTA sponsored Field Trip t-shirt.
Focus: RISD’s Parent Portal for access to your child’s grades, attendance, and to register your child for school. For more info, visit http://www.risd.org/Group/Parents/Focus/focusforparents.html
Future Panthers: A group of families with children that will attend PWE. Playdates, family nights, and special events are all coordinated via the Future Panthers page on Facebook.
Hug Zone: The area just inside the front doors of the school where parents are to give their children a farewell hug and wish them a good day. Parents are allowed to walk their children to their classrooms on the first day of school, but are not to walk past the hug zone after that.
Kinder Graduation: Takes place during the school day during the last week of school. Kindergarteners wear their “Sunday Best” and perform a few special songs they have prepared with the music teacher. It is a PWE tradition for kindergarteners to do a self-portrait during school in the spring semester and these are used as the graduation décor. Kinder students are given a diploma and a small reception follows. A PTA Kinder Graduation Chair coordinates the event.
Kindergarten Round-Up: The first opportunity incoming kinder families have to register their child for school. Registration forms are time-stamped for situations where more register than space allows for. Incoming Prestonwood kindergartners visit PWE in the spring to meet some future classmates, while mom and dad receive important registration information and tour the school.
Literacy Night: Held in the spring and features books that the students have written and illustrated through the PTA sponsored “Publishing Company”.
Math and Science Night: A school organized Family Night taking place in the fall at the school usually in conjunction with a PTA General Meeting. Fun math and science related activities are offered throughout the building.
Muffins with Mom: A PTA sponsored event held in the spring typically around Valentine’s Day welcoming all moms and mother-figures to the school on a Saturday morning for a light breakfast and craft with the kids.
Multicultural Fest: A PTA sponsored event held in the evening in the spring featuring activities, food, games and entertainment from around the world.
Musicals: Grades 2, 4 and 6 each put on a musical performance choreographed and directed by the PWE music teacher. There are usually 2 performances: one during the day for the student body, and one in the evening for parents.
Open House: Held once in the spring in conjunction with a PTA General Meeting. Parents are invited to visit their child’s classroom to view special assignments and projects the students have prepared. This is a come and go event (not a teacher conference period).
PACE: Stands for Physical activity, Academic assistance, Character education, and Enrichment. It is RISD's after school program that encourages students in a variety of quality academic and enrichment activities until 6pm each day. http://www.edline.net/pages/RISD_Departments_and_Programs/PACE
Parent Meet the Teacher: This is held during the first week of school at night. Parents come to school for a PTA meeting and then get to go to their child’s classroom to learn from their child’s teacher about the school year. Plan ahead and get your babysitter lined up.
Pay Pams: Online service that allows parents to pay for cafeteria accounts and monitor what their children are buying for lunch. https://paypams.com/
PIN: Each student has a PIN which they punch in when they want to purchase lunch.
Popsicles in the Park: A meet and greet event held the Friday before school starts in the school yard. Students receive a free popsicle and meet their teacher. School supply kits and sprit wear are sold by PTA following the event.
Pride Rally: A school assembly in “pep-rally” form held at the end of every nine-week grading period (for the student body only), where awards are given for excellence in academics, music, PE and art.
PTA Board Meetings: Typically held on the first Tuesday of the month at 7:00pm in the PWE library. PWE PTA Board members (both executive board and committee chairs) are all expected to attend.
PTA General Meetings: Typically held monthly on a Thursday evening at 6:00pm in the PWE cafeteria. Informative meeting with speakers from the PWE staff and PTA Board members. All parents highly encouraged to attend. Please remind your child that school rules still apply during these meetings (no climbing on furniture, playing tag in the atrium, etc.).
PTA: An important part of PWE’s continued success! The PTA is responsible for and/or helps with most of Prestonwood’s programs and events.
Publishing Company: A PTA sponsored program where students go through the writing/editing/illustrating process and end up with a keepsake hard cover book that is featured at Literacy Night.
Quest: An enrichment program for identified second grade students, QUEST (Quality Experiences Supporting Talent), will give students an opportunity to demonstrate their gifted behaviors through the development of a portfolio which, in conjunction with standardized test results, may support future placement in REACH. All non-REACH students will be tested in the spring of first grade to see if they qualify for this academic program. Quest classes begin in the fall of second grade. http://www.edline.net/pages/RISD_Departments_and_Programs/Advanced_Academic_Studies
REACH: RISD’s gifted and talented program available for K-6. Applications for kindergartners go out in October and qualified students will be tested in January. This application and testing schedule is different for 1-6. All 1st grade students are tested. Classes are once a week during regular school hours. Once accepted, the student will no longer need to be tested and will remain in REACH through grade six. However, if not accepted, the student is able to retest the following year. K – 3 grade REACH students receive services on PWE campus, and 4-6 graders are sent by bus to Bowie Elementary one day a week. http://www.edline.net/pages/RISD_Departments_and_Programs/Advanced_Academic_Studies
Reading Buddies: 6th grade students pair up with kindergartners to read together during classroom time.
Red Ribbon Week: Red Ribbon Week is a national tribute to drug and alcohol awareness, and takes place in the fall. Peer mediators visit and students show support with silly outfits throughout the week. The PTA funds an assembly during the week with a different performer each year.
Reflections: A National PTA art contest with mandatory participation for grades K-3 held in the fall. http://www.txpta.org/programs/reflections/
Report Cards: Report cards go home at the end of each nine week grading period via Tuesday Folders for grades 1-6. For grades 1 and 2, grades are given on a scale of 1 to 4 and for grades 3 and up, grades are given on a scale of 1-100. Kindergarten students receive one report card at the end of each semester.
ROBI: During the fall and spring semesters, ROBI instructors provide extension and enrichment lessons to kindergarten students in their home campus classrooms in order to encourage higher level thinking.
Room Parents: An electronic sign-up will be sent out the week before school starts (once class lists are announced), allowing parents to sign up to be a room parent. Up to 4 parents sign up per classroom to assist the teacher throughout the school year, take up a class collection, and plan and execute class parties. Room Parent Orientation typically takes place on a weeknight evening in the beginning of September.
Safety Patrol: 5th and 6th graders participate as crossing guards in helping with before and after-school pedestrian safety.
Science Fair: A school organized event taking place in the fall with mandatory participation for grades 4-6 and encouraged participation for grades K-3.
Specials: Specials are Art, Music and PE classes. All classes attend Art one day a week, Music two days a week and PE two days a week.
STAAR Test: A state mandated achievement test for grades 3-6 taking place in the Spring.
Supply Sale: School supply kits are sold by PTA online beginning in mid-July. They are delivered to the students’ classroom and sorted by the teachers. Supply kits are also sold the Friday before school starts at the school. This is the teacher-preferred way of purchasing supplies to ensure uniformity.
Talent Show: Students (K-6) are invited to prepare a skit/song/act to audition for the annual school Talent Show. The show is usually held in January with 2 performances: one during the day for the student body, and another in the evening in conjunction with a PTA General Meeting.
Teacher Appreciation Week: A PTA sponsored week in May with a theme and daily treats and gestures from volunteers to show how much we appreciate our teachers.
Teacher Conferences: Takes place once a school year in the fall. A parent only one-on-one conference with your child’s home room teacher in a 15-minute session. Additional parent conferences can always be requested at any time by contacting your child’s teacher.
Tuesday Folders: Each student brings home a manila folder every Tuesday with weekly communication flyers from the community, school, and PTA along with graded assignments from their teachers. Parents sign the outside of the folder on Tuesday evening confirming your receipt/acknowledgement of the information, and the students bring the empty folder back to school on Wednesday morning. PTA volunteers organized by the PTA Room Parent Coordinator stuff the folders every Tuesday morning after drop-off in the cafeteria.
Used Book Fair/Drive: A RISD council sponsored event where students are asked to bring in used books to donated to the Used Book Fair. The class that brings in the most books wins an ice cream party. Books are sorted by PTA volunteers and then delivered to the fair. All of the community is invited to attend the fair typically held around Valentine’s Day at an off-site location. Proceeds go to fund teacher and student scholarships given by the RISD Council of PTAs.
Valentine’s Party: Valentine’s Parties are organized and executed by Room Parents. They are held the Friday closest to Valentine’s Day from 2:00 – 3:00. Volunteers must have a current RISD background check on file in order to attend.
Volunteer Luncheon: A staff sponsored hamburger and hot dog cook-out held on school grounds where staff grills and all parent and community volunteers are invited to eat and mingle in come and go fashion to show the staff’s appreciation for all of the volunteer efforts throughout the school year.
Winter Party: Winter parties are organized and executed by Room Parents. They are held the last day of the fall semester from 2:00 – 3:00. Volunteers must have a current RISD background check on file in order to attend.
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