November 5th Rockland Newsletter

November 5th Rockland Newsletter

A Letter from the Principal

Dear Rockland Parents and Guardians,

Halloween was a blast at Rockland and students enjoyed their classroom parties.  The weather cooperated just enough to allow us to have the outdoor parade and it was great to see all of our Rockland families as we circled the school.  A big thank you to our RFA for hosting the Trunk or Treat activity at Rockland last Friday as well.  Families had a spooky good time despite the wet weather.  Our first monthly PBIS celebration assembly was held recently and we honored different classrooms with awards for following our ROAR expectations.  Students had a great time.   Our students completed the first Risk Watch assembly with the Libertyville Fire and Police Department.  Students learned about fire and Halloween safety.  Finally, our 3-5 Grade Fall Musical of Off Their Rockers was amazing!  Our students did a stellar job preparing, from learning song lyrics and dance moves, to creating the perfect costume.  A big thank you to Mrs. Vente, Mrs. Weatherly, Mrs. Hamrick, and to all our classroom teachers that supported this event. 

Here are some important reminders:


We have students who are coming to school without a properly fitting mask or extra masks.  We provide masks for students, however, we have been going through them at a rapid rate.  Please make sure to pack at least 2 additional clean, properly-fitting masks in your student’s backpack.  Please discuss with your child that they can change their mask during the day as needed and show them where the extras are located.  As a reminder, neck-gaiter style masks are not permitted for use at school.  Masking is super important to keeping our kids in school.  If all students are wearing their masks properly throughout the day, there is very little chance of your child being quarantined as a close contact from school.  This is because if students are properly masked indoors and 3ft apart they are not considered a close contact.  If your child is not wearing their mask properly, they may become a close contact if there is a positive case in the class, or if your child is not wearing the mask properly and becomes positive, it is likely several students in that classroom will need to be quarantined.  Teachers and staff are monitoring masking and addressing issues with students and parents as they arise.  Remind your child to make sure to wear their mask properly in the school building. Overall our students have been doing a great job!

Vaccine Clinic for Elementary Students: 

Planning is underway to provide a free vaccination clinic for District 70 students ages 5-11.  The event will occur at HMS from 4 to 8 pm on Nov. 19 (first dose) and Dec. 10 (second dose).  District 70 students in this age group will be prioritized. Open vaccination spots will then be offered to children of D70 employees in this age band.  This is a voluntary opportunity and registrants must commit to both dates. Registration will be opening soon. Families will be notified via email once it does. Be on the lookout!

Lunch/Recess Sub Volunteers: 

We have an amazing group of dedicated lunch and recess supervisors.  Occasionally we need some extra help when our supervisors need to take some time off.  We are looking for some parent volunteers to fill in on an as needed basis.  If you are interested, please complete the form linked here Sub Lunch Recess Form.  This will help us fill our lunch and recess positions more quickly.  If we need a sub, we will give you a call and see if you are available.   

Lost and Found: 

If your child has lost a jacket, water bottle, hat, etc… Please have them check the lost and found outside the nurse’s office.   Please consider putting your child’s name on the item to ensure it is returned quickly.  Items that are not claimed are donated twice a year: once after winter break and again at summer break.  

Veterans Day:  

We will be celebrating Veterans Day on Friday November 12 with a school assembly.  Even though we are unable to fit our whole school in the gym for an assembly at once, all grades will participate in the assembly.  Thank you to our Veterans who signed up to participate in the event.  


Jim Cieciwa



Dates To Remember:

Tuesday November 9th - Picture Retake Day and Group Pictures

Wednesday November 10th - RFA Bingo Night at 6:30 pm

Thursday November 11th - No School Veterans Day

Friday November 12th - Veterans Day Assembly 

Tuesday November 16th - End of Trimester 1

Gifted and Enrichment Overview

In District 70, we do our best to ensure that all students are being challenged! The GTE teacher provides differentiation support to the classroom teachers as well as opportunities and support for the highly able students at the elementary level. Outside of the classroom setting, the GTE teacher works with flexible small groups to provide enrichment opportunities.  

3rd, 4th and 5th Grade Gifted Classes:

In District 70, students are formally identified for Gifted Services for 3rd- 5th grade.  They can qualify for Gifted Math, Gifted Reading, or both!  In gifted math, the gifted students are learning algebraic skills through the Hands-On-Equations program.  This program will help in students’ transition to the gifted Highland mathematics program. In gifted reading, the gifted students complete novel studies, they learn to take anecdotal notes while they read, and respond to the text through a variety of challenging activities! 

Math Enrichment:

The 1st - 5th grade math enrichment groups work on challenging activities that extend their mathematical thinking. The lessons correlate with the math concept that is being taught in their classrooms, but the concept is taken to a deeper and more complicated level! The groups are flexible and change with each math unit based on pretesting.  It's amazing to see the higher-level mathematical thinking that takes place!  This year, the GTE teachers have worked on aligning extension activities with the newly adopted Bridges curriculum.

Reading Enrichment:

These 1st – 5th grade enrichment groups focus on extending students' learning of reading! Students read above grade level text and complete challenging activities that encourage higher-level thinking about the reading! Reading Enrichment groups are flexible and change throughout the year based on formal and informal assessments, including STAR Reading and F&P. 

For a complete scope of the enrichment and gifted services offered, please feel free to visit the D70 website.

~Michelle Salm, Rockland Gifted/Enrichment teacher

Fourth Grade News

It is truly hard to believe that we are nearing the end of our first trimester!  Time flies while having fun in fourth grade!  We have been very busy! The students have done a tremendous job of transitioning into our 4th grade routines and expectations. 

In math, our main focus this trimester has been multiplication. We began the year working on using number lines, ratio tables, and various methods to solve multiplication problems. Through the first unit we also explored factors, multiples, prime and composite numbers. As we progress through unit two, students are finding strategies that they understand and are able to explain. In addition, multi-step word problems are an area we will continue to work on as a class, so students can see different strategies and ideas. 

During our first chapter in Social Studies, we explored how geography affects the way we live. Through this trimester we have also learned about the Northeast region and the various landmarks and resources that make it special.

In our first two units of science, students have been learning about sense receptors and plant and animal parts. We explored the relationships between animals and their physical properties. As we move forward, we are going to focus on forms of energy and transfer of energy. 

In reading we have reviewed our summarizing skills along with various text structures that help readers comprehend the story. been focused on “tuning in” to our inner thinking voice.  There are many different ways that readers think; we ask questions, make connections, create visualizations, and synthesize ideas.  These reading strategies, along with summarizing and identifying the main idea, are skills we will be focusing on throughout the year in fourth grade. In addition, we will continue to work on forming well structured responses to open ended questions. 

In our class writing, we are working on staying on topic and developing supporting details.  We have been using model texts to identify these traits, then analyzing our own writing to see if we are applying these strategies. This trimester we have also learned about idioms, hyperboles, dialogue, and how we can incorporate it into our writing to create a more vivid description for the reader.

We are looking forward to all of the new learning fourth graders will be experiencing as we move into November!

Student Council Spirit Fridays

Student Council is excited to kick off Spirit Fridays starting November 5th! Every Friday, please show your Rockland spirit by dressing up to the themes below. 

Neon Day (Friday, Nov. 5)

Patriotic Day (Friday, Nov 12)

Crazy Hair/Hat day (Friday, Nov. 19)

Sports Day (Friday, Dec. 3)

Rockland Raptor Spirit Day (Friday, Dec. 10)

Tie-dye/Favorite Color Day (Friday, Dec. 17)

RFA News and Updates


Next week, your student will be coming home with information regarding the fall book fair at our school. They'll come home with an informational letter, a book fair parent form, and a flyer. Please pay special attention to the letter regarding details for the fair and how it will work this fall. Also note that the parent form must accompany your child when they shop at the fair so make sure not to throw it away.

Book Fair week will be November 15-19, with classes previewing the fair on Monday and Tuesday of that week and shopping during their library time on Wednesday-Friday.

If you are hoping to get some holiday gifts from this fair, please consider shopping online on our school's fair link. It can be found at and will be available for shopping starting on November 15.

Additional details and information will be posted on the RFA Facebook page, so make sure to check it out! Reach out to Keri Woodward at with any questions.


Veterans Day Thank You Cards: 

A flyer went home this week with materials to create a special "thank you" card for our local veterans in honor of Veterans Day. Please drop off the completed "thank you" card in the main office vestibule by Fri, Nov 11 and we will deliver to the Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center. Questions? Contact Shannon Metzger at

Winter Caroling on Fri, Dec 10 at 5:30 p.m.

Join Mrs. Vente, the Chorus Club and other students as they sing winter/holiday songs to people passing by at the northeast corner of Rockland Rd. and Stewart Ave. Festive attire welcomed. Enjoy a warm cup of hot chocolate and spread some holiday/winter cheer! Music sheets will be available at the event. Sign up at Questions? Contact Jill Sahagian at


Our next RFA meeting will be this Tuesday, November 9th, at 7:00 p.m. in the Rockland Learning Center. We would love to see you there! 


Thank you to all the families that signed up for RFA Bingo Night! All Bingo materials will be distributed at the event. Please see your email next week for more details! 


The 5th grade moms' mixer will be held this Friday November 5th.  It will be hosted by Jessica Page.  


Nov. 9 - RFA Meeting

Nov. 10 - Bingo Night

Nov. 12 - Girls VIP Event

Nov. 15-19 - Book Fair

Dec. 10 - Winter Caroling


Thanks to everyone who came out to the Trunk or Treat last Friday! Also, thank you, Nancy Shunneson, for chairing such an awesome event. We had a great turnout of spooky trunks and lots of candy for the students despite the rain! Great job Raptors!

A huge THANK YOU to all the room parents and Halloween party volunteers for all your time, efforts and planning to make each class party a success!

Kate Kelley

Kara Larson  

Kristin Howeth  

Megan Maloney 

Kate Buckley  

Laura DeBartolo

Shannon O’Hagan 

Nicole Nesbitt

Megan Farrell

Sara Anderson

Anastasiia Dymchuk   

Laura Joyce 

Shari Tomlin  

Audrey Grunst  

Dana Parsons

Jeni Filippo  

Lindsay McMahon 

Jackie Sliz

Emily Kreuser 

Nicole Slobe

Jenelle Wass 

Nikki O’Neil

Nancy Shunneson

Jen Gregory  

Kate Reifsnyder

Nikki Abbott 

Eloisa Sosa

Marilyn Rehmer  

Jenn Holder-White

April Oboikowitch    

Kris Norwood

Katie Suttie 

Erin Potempa  

Erika Hormel  

Allison Carollo

Melissa Johnson

Jani Vuckovic

Laura Weber  

Tracy Randall

Sooji Lui

Katie Mickiewicz

Tracy Hartwell

Michelle Noll  

Anca Zegrean  

Jodi Majewski  

Mona Hakala

Katie Sanderson  

Kate Vacek  

Blanca Sermak 

Toni Parvis

Jessica Page  

Katie Taylor  

Courtney Hillyard

Sybil Chadwick

Jennifer Martin

Maggie Krynski

Helen Gerbin

Tracey Janzen