Follow by Email

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Learning in First Grade

First graders have begun a unit on Animals Tame and Wild. We will be studying how people and animals are important to one another by reading, singing and writing. Students are expanding their oral vocabulary and learning words such as: responsibility, shelter and needs.

We are also working very hard learning to read, write and spell short vowel words. During Fundations time, students are using dry erase boards and magnetic tiles to practice their skills. Students are learning to write basic sentences.

We are trying to instill a love of reading so please be sure to read every night with your child. Stop by the Beverly Public Library or look for the new Bookmobile if you need books to enjoy together. 

 Happy Reading!   
~The First Grade Team

Friday, October 26, 2012

Grade Three News!!

September and October was filled with fun and learning!  Students met new children and teachers.  We focused on routines and expectations, modeled behavior, and social interactions.  Students learned new games to play at recess and learned many ways to greet each other and feel great about themselves. They also learned ways to be kind, helpful, citizens.

After discussions, readings and exemplars, students wrote their Hopes and Dreams for the year and are focusing on how to achieve their goals.  They also have been having fun reading and writing spooky, fall stories & poems.  In Mathematics, students jumped into place value, telling time, counting money, and reviewing patterns and routines. In Science, students are discovering great things about Matter, both with their new Science Specialist, Mrs. Spreen and in class.  Students are also getting the “Big Picture” by figuring out where they are in the world in Social Studies.

We are all looking forward to what is ahead!  We will be ending the month with “Pumpkin Day” where students will use math skills to measure, estimate,  and weigh their pumpkins. They will also learn facts about pumpkins through reading and writing and get the chance to use their imagination to create uniquely decorated pumpkins.

  - Grade Three Teachers: Jennifer DeCourcy, Erin Foley, Madonna Kelley, Erin Sweeney

Reciprocal Teaching in Fourth Grade

Fourth grade students and teachers are working with reading specialists from the Bay State Reading Initiative to implement reciprocal teaching strategies in the classrooms.   During small group reading sessions, students will be taking turns assuming the role of the teacher and leading dialogues about what they have read.  They will use strategies that encourage them to think about their own thought process during reading, help them learn to monitor their own comprehension as they read, and teach them to ask questions during reading to make the text more comprehensible.  Reciprocal teaching is a wonderful way for students to take ownership over their learning!  

News from the Health Office

Greetings to all from the health office. We are off to a great start this year, and I have enjoyed the plentiful opportunities for meeting both students, parents and guardians. I encourage you to stop by and introduce yourself if you are visiting the Cove School, as it is lovely making the connection with families.

September and October have been months of getting up to speed with state requirements and updating immunizations, physical exams and health records. Please let us know if your child has any new allergies, medications or other medical issues during the school year so that we may provide the best care to your children.

Mandated Vision and Hearing Screening:
All students in kindergarten through third grade have now been screened for vision and hearing. If your child had difficulty with any of the vision screenings (near vision, far, and stereopsis, or “binocular depth perception”), referrals are currently being mailed to the student’s home. Rescreening of children who had difficulty with the hearing exam will be rescreened in two weeks and referrals sent as needed at that time (often a cold or congestion will give us a failing hearing screening that clears within a couple of weeks.)

We will be screening fourth and fifth graders for vision in the next two weeks.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions at all.

Also, a big thank you for the clothes that have been donated. We are all set with plenty of shirts and pants for children who may need a change mid day.

Lastly, a gentle reminder to review the Elementary Handbook if you have questions about an illness in your child and are wondering if they should stay home. Always feel free to call!

Mimi Benedict

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hello From the Music Room!

 We are quite busy with all things musical.  Our veteran fifth graders can tell you about Bach, Mozart and Brahms even while we sing a variety of folk songs and learn European folk dances.  Casting for the fifth grade play starts soon.   This year, the play is "Bebop with Aesop" featuring  five well-known fables in a humorous setting. Included in the play is catchy blues, pop and rock songs. The performance date is Wednesday evening, March 20 at 6:30.  More details to follow. Stay tuned...

Spirituals are ringing from the music room in grade four as we lay the foundation for studying the history of jazz.  It's all about beginning note reading as the third graders prepare to receive their recorders.  These boys and girls will be playing Beethoven before long!  Apple picking and pumpkins are Autumn themes for the first and second graders and we will soon be performing  "The Black Cat Song," but not before the students have learned quarter, half and eighth notes which make up the song.  Kindergarten students are busy with singing and movement games and are experts at keeping the beat.  All students are learning a varied body of folk songs as part of our "musical cultural literacy." Dancing and movement is also a part of each class for every grade.   

Grades One and Two will perform the holiday assembly this year. Mark your calendars for Wednesday, December 19 at 9:00 in the Cove School cafeteria/hall.  Thank you all for the privilege of working with your children.  

Their excitement and love of music is simply a delight!  

Laurie McDonough, Cove School Music Teacher

Running Club Reminder

Gentle Reminder for Grades 3-5

Monday, October 22nd is the last day to register for Running Club
Checks for 25.00 can made out to Cove PTO 

The first Running Club is Wednesday, October 24th: 2:00 - 3:00

Please email Kelly Anderson with any questions: 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Second Grade is Loving Nature!

Second graders are just finishing their unit on exploring nature. One story they read to go with this theme was Henry and Mudge Camping Under the Stars. Teachers are incorporating writing into this unit as well.  Presently, students are writing their own nature stories. Luckily, we have a phenomenal children's garden here at Cove, which was the perfect place to explore nature!

Please enjoy the pictures of your children in the garden. : )

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Kindergarten Community Helpers

The Kindergarten classes have been discussing Community Helpers for the last couple of weeks.  We have read about them in our literacy blocks via the story Miss Bindergarten Takes a Field Trip With Kindergarten, by Joseph Slate.  We are also discussing Community Helpers as part of our Social Studies curriculum.

This coincided nicely with the Fire Prevention Week.  Beverly Firefighters came to visit Cove School to discuss fire prevention and safety.  One firefighter even dressed in full gear, mask and all, to show what they would look like and sound like if they ever had to come to a house in the case of a fire. It was a great presentation to show that even though he might have looked and sounded scary with all of his gear on, he was still the same firefighter they saw before he got dressed.  The children were allowed to try on their heavy jackets and helmets.  They were very excited to do this, as you can see by the pictures!
~Submitted by Jen Chirco and Margy Roy

MA Children's Book Awards

Open Books! Open Minds!

To Parents and Guardians of 4th and 5th Grade Students

It is our hope to encourage our students to reach for, and continue to develop a purpose and excitement for reading.  Your child's reading skills are important to their success in school.  In addition, reading can be a fun and imaginative activity for children, which opens doors to all kinds of new worlds for them.

We are excited to start a new reading enrichment program this year that will allow access to rigorous and exciting literature. Twenty five books chosen from the 2013 Massachusetts Children's Book List will be available at both the Cove School Library and the Beverly Public Library. The authors and titles are listed below.  Criteria for the list include literary quality, genre variety, representation of diverse cultural groups, and reader appeal.

We will be encouraging students to read as many books from the list as possible, while keeping a reading log that parents can sign. Every child that reads at least 5 books from the list will be invited to a celebration in the spring. Parents are also invited! Teachers will also take part by choosing books for read aloud in their classrooms.

We encourage you to enjoy these books with your child/children!
Happy Reading! : )

Bauer, M.D.     The Golden Ghost
Buyea, R.       Because of Mr. Terupt
Dowell, F. O.   Falling In
Erskine, K.     Mockingbird
French, V.      The Robe of Skulls: The First Tale from the Five Kingdoms
Gifford, P.     Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Practicing the Piano
Grimes, N.      Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel
Gutman, D.      Roberto & Me
Holm, J.        Turtle in Paradise
Jennings, P.    Guinea Dog
Law, I.         Scumble
Lord, C.        Touch Blue
Lupica, M.      Shoot-Out
Malone, M.      The Sixty-Eight Rooms
Martin, A. M.   Everything for a Dog
Mass, W.        The Candymakers
Preus, M.       Heart of a Samurai
Prineas, S.     The Magic Thief
Scaletta, K.    Mamba Point
Schlitz, L.A.   The Night Fairy
Senzai, N.H.    Shooting Kabul
Stephens, J.    The Emerald Atlas
Tashjian, J.    My Life as a Book
Vanderpool, C.  Moon Over Manifest
Williams-Garcia, R.     One Crazy Summer                

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Preschool Curriculum

At Cove, we have both 4 and 5 day models of preschool programs. The preschool programs are integrated by both disability and age. Children attending are aged 3-5 years old.

We use the Opening The World of Learning or OWL curriculum. It is research based, comprehensive and it covers all learning domains. It is developmentally appropriate for preschool children. 

The curriculum highlights:
  • pre-academic skills such as name recognition, counting, listening in a group setting
  • literacy skills including vocabulary development
  • communication skills such as responding to directions and expressing needs
  • participating in fine motor and prewriting activities
  • safe play with bikes, balls, and playground equipment
  • developing self help routines and skills
  • learning routines, classroom rules
  • developing social skills with classmates

Cove Book Fair is Coming!

The Book Fair Will Be Held Next Week!

Please Watch for Up-Coming Information and Specific Times for Individual Classes.

Thank You Garden Stewards!

A huge thank you from Victoria Hackett to all of you who helped in the garden this afternoon!

More information to come on the next meeting.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Spooky Story Night at Cove School

Thursday, October 18th ~ 5:30-7:30 PM
Wear your costume (or not) and creep, float, or crawl to Cove School for a frighteningly good time! Hear Cove's principal, teachers, and other school friends read terrifying tales!  Join us if you dare for a spooky story scare!

~ Light potions and spells will be served~


$3 per student / $5 per family
proceeds to benefit PTO Arts and Enrichment and other other programs

PTO Meeting in the Cove Library at 6PM ~ Mummies and Daddies are Welcome!

Fall Frolic 2012

This is what dedication looks like!

Let's Keep Running!

Let’s KEEP Running!!

Sign up now for Running Club for grades 3-5.
Fee is $25. Please make checks payable to Cove PTO.

Wednesdays Oct. 24, Oct. 31, Nov. 7 and Nov. 14 
2:05-3:05 rain or shine at Cove School

Please have children wear appropriate sneakers for running and comfortable clothes.

Children should also bring a water bottle.

We will run each week and talk about warm ups, cool downs, pacing, hydration and other important training tips! Kids can earn more toe tokens!

***Please complete the registration form on the reserve side and return to the office by Oct.22.  SORRY, NO LATE REGISTRATIONS!***

Contact Kelly Anderson with any questions at

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Do You Have a Growth Mindset or a Fixed Mindset?

As part of our foundational work this school year, we are working on a school culture that promotes a growth mindset.  In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work - brains and talent are just the starting point.  This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment. 

Carol Dweck, one of the world's leading researchers in the field of motivation, published a book called Mindset (2006) (

Many of the teachers at Cove have read this book, but the entire staff has read professional articles around this concept, and we have on-going discussions pertaining to student achievement through the use of a growth mindset. As parents and part of our Cove School Team, I encourage you to do your own research around Dweck's work.  As a mother myself, I am working hard to incorporate the language of a growth mindset with my own children. It is has been an eye-opening experience!

This is a great chart to easily understand the concept behind Deck's research and compare and contrast a growth mindset vs. a fixed mindset.

As the principal of Cove School, with the great fortune of having passionate and dedicated teachers, I am confident that we will have a year in which we make great gains in student achievement!  : ) 


Dear Cove Families,

It is my pleasure to introduce you to the new Cove School Blog. The purpose of this site is to keep you informed of up-coming events, share instructional practices from within our classrooms, and keep you abreast of current events in education today.

Please bookmark our site to be sure you are getting the information you need. I will also be posting the address on our school website as a link. The address is

Happy Reading!
Lisa Oliver, Cove Principal