Please click here to view the newest Nutrition Guidelines when planning on snacks and celebration items.
September 12, 2018
Dear D.J. Montague Families,
I hope this letter finds you and your family safe and dry. We are off to a great start, and I am excited to begin a new school year. I hope the transition back to school has gone smoothly for your family, particularly those of you who are sending a child to school for the first time. The students are adjusting well, learning classroom and school routines, making new friends and reconnecting with old friends. We are looking forward to a successful year!
It is my pleasure to welcome Ms. Pat Chappell to the D.J. Montague staff. Ms. Chappell is a veteran educator with 20 years of teaching experience in Williamsburg-James City County. This is a bit of a homecoming for Ms. Chappell who worked at D.J. Montague from 1997 – 2010. Now, after a brief retirement, she has decided to return to the classroom. Ms. Chappell will be serving our kindergarten – second grade gifted students. We are excited to welcome Ms. Chappell back to our Mustang family and look forward to the many ways she will engage our students in their learning.
In accordance with the Code of Virginia and Accreditation Standards, one fire drill will be held each week for the first month of school and one each month for the remainder of the school year. Additionally, public schools are now required to conduct two lockdown drills during the month of September and two during the second semester, one of which must be held in January. The first drill will be conducted by our school staff and other drills may be conducted by members of the James City Police Department. During this and any other drills, parents and visitors will not be permitted to enter the building. Students have done an excellent job during the drills that have already been conducted.
This year we are focusing on fostering a growth mindset in our students. We all want our children to work hard, be risk takers and succeed, but our choice of words may be conveying a different message. In her book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Carol S. Dweck differentiates between a growth mindset and a fixed mindset and the role we as parents and teachers have in developing the growth mindset. I would like to share with you some ideas about what she calls the fixed mindset versus the growth mindset.
Simply, the fixed mindset message says: You have permanent traits and I’m judging them. The growth mindset says: You are a developing person and I am interested in your development. I frequently lavished praise on my children for doing something well or succeeding in the hope of encouraging confidence and achievement. My comments included, “You are so smart.”, “You’re a natural athlete.”, “Look how well you did without even studying.” Dweck’s studies show that the message children hear is quite different. “If I don’t learn something quickly, I’m not smart.”, “I’d better quit studying or they won’t think I’m brilliant.” Children like to receive praise for their intelligence and talent, but that boost is short lived. Once something is difficult or challenging, that confidence and motivation fall by the wayside because if success means they are smart, failure means they are stupid. This is the fixed mindset.
So what can we say to let our children know we are proud of their successes? Rather than praising their talent or intelligence, we should praise them for the growth oriented process – for their effort and accomplishments achieved through practice, study and persistence. Comments like, “You really studied for your test and your improvement shows it.”, “I like the way you tried many strategies on that math problem until you solved it.” and “That assignment was so long and involved. I admire how you concentrated and finished it.” As Dweck stated, “If parents want to give their children a gift, the best thing they can do is to teach their children to love challenge, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning.” Ask your child about the power of yet!
As you probably have heard, the WJCC School Board adopted changes to its Student Wellness policy. These changes have no impact on what students can bring to school in their lunches, but do affect food that can be served during the school day such as birthday treats, snacks and class celebrations. In the D.J. Montague Elementary School Family Handbook which should be coming home soon, I have provided the criteria snacks and treats must meet to be brought to school. General standards must be met first and then there are nutrient standards for calories, sodium, sugar and fats that must also be met. To put it simply, to meet the general standards, the first ingredient on the label must be
- whole grain or
- a fruit, vegetable, dairy product or protein food or
- a combination food that contains at least ¼ cup of fruit and/or vegetable
If that standard is met, the food must also meet the following nutrient standards
- Calories – 200 or less
- Sodium – 200 mg or less
- Total Fat – 35% of calories or less
- Saturated Fat – Less than 10% of calories
- Trans Fat – 0 g
- Sugar – 35% by weight or less
I encourage you to visit these links on the WJCC website for more detailed information and answers to frequently asked questions. http://www.boarddocs.com/vsba/wjcc/Board.nsf/goto?open&id=98CK2Q4F74D0 and
Mark your calendar.
19th – 21st Spirit Night at Papa Murphy’s (Be sure to mention D.J.!)
20th Back to School Night (6:00 – 8:00 PM – Gym)
26th Picture Day
29th Color Run (8:30 Registration/Check in – D.J.)
8th PTA Meeting (4:00 PM – Media Center)
18th Math-Science Night/Book Fair (5:30 – 7:00 PM)
It is important that we work together to make this school year a successful one for your child and your family. If you have any questions, concerns or feedback, please don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 757-258-3022.
DJ Montague students have been busily exploring the Makerspace in DJM’s Media Center. Makerspace provides students in all grades, K-5, the opportunity to explore and problem solve with hands-on creating and building. There are opportunities to build, create, code, be innovative, collaborate, and use critical thinking. Here are some 5th grade students who constructed a large “building” and they were even able to fit inside! What a great space to explore and test new ideas.
October 11, 2017
Dear D.J. Montague Families,
We are halfway through the first marking period, and the school year is off to a great start. I hope the transition back to school has gone smoothly for your family, particularly those of you who are sending a child to school for the first time. The students seem to have adjusted well and are learning classroom and school procedures and routines. We are looking forward to a successful year!
It was nice seeing so many of you at Back to School Night. I hope you found the evening enjoyable and informative. Communication between home and school is key to your child’s success. Information about your child’s academic performance and classroom activities can be found in ParentVue. Directions for navigating this site can be found on the D.J. Montague homepage at https://wjccschools.org/djm/. Please contact the school if you are unsure of your log in information. The D.J. Montague Family Handbook that was sent home the second week of school also contains important information. If you haven’t taken time to read it, I encourage you to do so. If you have lost the handbook, you can access it on the D.J. Montague website under the Students and Families tab.
The staff is working hard to keep the carline moving to minimize congestion in the parking lot in the morning and at dismissal time. Please help us by pulling to the top of the carline, yielding to cars pulling out of the circle if you are driving through the parking lot to park and if there is space, yielding to buses exiting the bus loop.
On Thursday, October 19th we will be participating in the Great Shakeout Earthquake Drill. During this drill students are expected to Drop, Cover and Hold On. Students will drop to the floor, take cover under their desk or table and hold on to the legs of the desk or table. More information about this drill and being prepared for an earthquake can be found at www.ShakeOut.org/southeast
Our Fall Celebrations will be taking place on October 31st. Due to the increasing number of students with food allergies, we ask that no home baked goods or items prepared at home be brought to school. Items should be store bought and have an ingredient list on the package. Our school nurse will review the ingredient list to ensure that the treats are safe for all students in the class to enjoy. In accordance with the Wellness Policy, if you will be providing food items, we would like to include healthy options such as fruits and vegetables with the traditional “sweets.” If you plan on bringing fruits and vegetables, we ask that the items be brought to school and the trays prepared here. A “kitchen” will be set up in the conference room for this purpose. Thank you for your help in making this a safe, special day for our students.
On Tuesday, October 31st beginning at 2:00 PM, we will continue a longstanding D.J. Montague tradition, the Halloween Parade. Students in grades K – 2 will parade around the bus loop in costume as the rest of the student body, staff and parents look on. In order to ensure the safety of the students during this event, the entrance to the school will be closed at 1:45 PM. If you are planning on attending, make arrangements to arrive before this time, otherwise you will need to park on Centerville Road. Additionally, due to limited space and preparation time, we ask that our families please not enter the hallways or classrooms prior to the parade. After the parade, each class will move to a specific location for pictures. After this photo opportunity, students will return to the classrooms. For those of you who will be taking your children home after the parade, classroom teachers will have a sign out sheet in the classrooms. PLEASE do not take your child from the parade site. You will receive more specific details about this event from your child’s teacher.
Here are some important October/November dates to remember:
14th PTA Color Run (9:00 AM – D.J. Soccer Field)
19th Great Shakeout Drill
20th 12:46 Dismissal (Professional Development)
24th Spirit Night at Moe’s (5:00 – 9:00 PM)
25th 1st Grade Literacy Night (6:00 – 7:00 PM)
27th PTA Trick or Treat (6:00 – 8:00 PM)
31st Halloween Parade (2:00 PM)
6th 1st Marking Period Ends
7th Teacher Workday – NO SCHOOL
13th PTA Meeting (4:00 PM – Media Center)
9th B.U.G. Ceremonies (2nd grade – 9:00 AM; Kindergarten 9:30 AM; 1st Grade – 10:00 AM)
15th Makeup Picture Day
As you may or may not know, D.J. Montague has been nominated as the Best Primary School in Williamsburg. What an honor! Please remember to vote for D.J. Montague in the Virginia Gazette’s Best of Williamsburg in the Service category. Voting ends October 28th at 11:59 PM. http://www.vagazette.com/vanews-the-virginia-gazette-best-of-williamsburg-2017-20170706-htmlstory.html#/gallery?category=1138631
It is important that we work together to make this school year a successful one for your child and your family. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact me at email@example.com or 757-258-3022.
Reading and Pizza- what could be better?
Papa Murphy’s is partnering with D.J. Montague to encourage students to read at home! Each time a student reads a book, or for students who are not yet reading, has a book read to them, a parent or other adult signs off on the coupon. Once ten books have been read, the coupon can be redeemed at Papa Murphy’s for free Mini Murphy pizza. We hope you will take advantage of this opportunity and enjoy some quality reading time with your child, and a free pizza!
Please contact your child’s teacher for more information.
Mr. David Dick is the Instructional Technology Resource Teacher (ITRT) for DJ Montague. He is working to bring new and exciting technology to our students. The link below will take you to his current DonorsChoose Project that will provide Ozobots (an exciting new piece of Coding technology) to our students. Please click on the link below if you are interested in donating and supporting this exciting idea.
We hope you will join us all after Open House and support our fabulous PTA at Blaze Pizza in Newtown. What a perfect way to kick off a new school year- Open House, pizza, family, and camaraderie!
Thank you for all you do to support our PTA and your child’s success here at DJ.
Can you believe the first day of school is upon us! It promises to be a WONDERFUL year here at DJ. We CAN NOT wait to welcome your child to another school year. The first day of school is Tuesday, September 5th.
We hope to see you all at Back to School Night on October 5th from 6-8 PM. Come to DJ to learn more about your child’s journey at school this year. We will start in the gym with important information from our PTA and principal and then head back to individual classrooms. Please contact your child’s teacher or the main office at 258-3022 with any questions.
Thank you for taking this important step to support your child’s learning.
DJ Montague has once again formed a Relay for Life Team to support the fight against cancer. We are very close to reaching our $5,000 goal for the year and hope to surpass it before the Relay for Life event on May 20th!
You have the opportunity to support the American Cancer Society and honor a loved one in the process. Please click here for an order form and more details on how to purchase a t-shirt and/or add a loved one’s name to the back of the shirt.
Orders are due no later than May 3rd.
If you would like to join DJ’s team: Mustangs for a Cure, please visit: http://main.acsevents.org/goto/djmmustangs