September 6, 2011
Welcome to a new year at Loma Portal Elementary School. This year promises to
be an exciting one of change and challenge.
Your child is currently enrolled in a fourth grade class located in room 29. My name
is Amy Kinseth. My partners (the other 4th grade teachers) and I will be working very
closely together this year. Our classes will have many joint experiences which will
further your child’s 4th grade experience. This letter will let you know a little bit about
me and familiarize you with my policies concerning expectations, behavior, and
I am looking forward to spending an exciting year of learning and development with
your child. An area of special attention will be the development of a pleasant,
productive classroom environment, and the growth of positive attitudes and personal
responsibility. To assist in achieving this goal, I will be focusing on positive behavior.
In our classroom tickets are GOOD! If your child receives a “LIVESTRONG ticket” or
a “vocabulary ticket” this is an accomplishment that should be celebrated. A notice
will come home at the end of the month with your child’s tickets attached. Please
make sure to sign this notice and return it the very next day. Thanks!
Notices (via email) are sent home every Monday, and will always contain important
information about our class and the school. Because communication from me will be
via email, it is imperative that each household has at least one email (that is checked
on a regular basis).
I will also post major information on my class page on
www.lomaportalelementary.com. Important papers are uploaded on this page, as
well as helpful web links. I also will be posting LOTS of pictures in our class album!
Please check our page often (from the homepage, click “academics”, “4th grade”,
“staff”, and “Amy Kinseth”). Even more importantly, Mr. McGinn and I will be
updating our Moodle site on a regular basis. Please get to know the site well. To
get to our site, 1. go to www.moodle.sandi.net. 2. Find the box on the right hand side
that says "Locate a Course". 3. Type in my name (Kinseth) or Mr. McGinn's name
(either will work). 4. Click on "Kinseth and McGinn's 4th Grade". 5. Take a look
around. We'll be on this site every day in 4th grade! 6. Some of the items are for
home, and some are for class use only. Make sure to only use items that don't say,
"class use only".
As many of you know, our school district encourages forty minutes of homework a
night at fourth grade, Monday through Thursday, in addition to nightly reading. To
meet this expectation your child will be bringing home assignments in a Monday
homework packet that reinforces daily lessons. Assignments should be within your
student’s range of ability. If, however, you find that your child is spending more than
forty minutes on his or her nightly assignments, please let me know. We write
homework assignments daily in your student’s planner. Please make it a habit to
check this planner nightly to follow up on homework assignments. In fact, parents
must sign the planner every night .
One night each week your child will bring home his or her writer’s notebook. On this
night your child will be responsible for writing one short, unedited entry (not to
exceed one page). These writing assignments can be found on our Moodle page.
Long term projects will be assigned monthly. If questions or concerns about these
projects arise, please contact me when the assignment is given so accommodations
may be made. These assignments will also be posted on our Moodle page.
Please encourage your child to discuss the events and activities of our classroom
with you. Parent support in meeting project deadlines will prevent undue stress.
Your interest and involvement are appreciated and will greatly enhance your
Our theme for this year is “LIVESTRONG”. Each child will receive a yellow
LIVESTRONG bracelet. We will talk about making good, healthy living choices. I try
to encourage physical activities and eating healthy. Please help me with this by
limiting sugary snacks sent to school. We love celebrating birthdays, but
encourage you and your child to find ways to celebrate with our class without sugar
treats. Pencils, books, even fresh-popped popcorn are great ways to have fun on a
Now a little about me. I have taught at Loma Portal for 10 years and have a high
regard to the staff and parents. I am proud to be part of such an exciting team.
I have also been blessed with a wonderful family. My husband, Matt, and I have
been married for just over eight years and live in Hillcrest. Matt is an post-doctoral
research fellow at San Diego State researching cancer. My mother, a former
Spanish teacher, and step-father, a special-education teacher and behavior
specialist at La Jolla High School, live a few minutes away in Del Cerro. We are
very close and see them often.
I appreciate that it is often difficult to discuss a child’s progress during the school
day. Included in this letter you will find an information sheet that will help me know
when it is best to reach you. Please take a moment and fill this out and send it back
to school with your child tomorrow. I will do my best to accommodate your individual
needs. Together we can make this year an exciting and enriching learning
experience for your child.
Thank you for taking the time to read this letter, and the following information sheets.
If you have any questions about any part of this packet, please do not hesitate to
ask. I am a HUGE fan of email. Please feel free to email me at any time at
firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to meeting you, and am pleased to
have this opportunity to share in your child’s learning experience at Loma Portal.