May Newsletter
Van Meter Elementary
Dear Parents,
March and April are always active months at Van Meter Elementary. Events included the Elementary Carnival, Science Fair, Parent/Teacher Conferences, Mush-Husky Assembly, Jump Rope for Heart, STARLAB, Old Creamery Theater, Battle of the Books, Solo-Ensemble Contest, Biztown, Live Owl Presentation, Digital Citizenship Parents Workshop, Kids Club, Science Club and Chess Club.
During the school year students also enjoy many field experiences. These include visits to the Capitol, Civic Center Plays, Iowa Historical Building, Science Center, Blank Park Zoo, Kuehn Conservation, Neal Smith Wildlife Refuge and Living History Farms. In these difficult economic times, Van Meter Elementary is one of the few schools that still offer field experiences. This is because of the fundraising efforts of our VMEPC and our parents.
Students in second through sixth grades took the Iowa Test of Basic Skills in February. Van Meter Elementary ranked in 90th percentile or above in reading and the 94th percentile or above in math compared to the average standard scores of schools nationwide.
During Early Release Inservices our teachers are developing their skills in the use of instructional technology. On building level inservice days, they are discussing writing skills as part of our literacy program. Our focus has also been on differentiating instruction to meet the individual learning needs of students. These professional development days give our teachers opportunities to collaborate and continue to develop a top quality educational program for our students.
May begins with Teacher Appreciation Week. Please take a moment and let your child’s teacher know that you appreciate their efforts. Events in May include the fourth grade Wax Museum, a Music Informance by our Kindergarten, first and second grade students, a Character Counts program presented by our sixth grade students, a Countries of the World program and dinner for our third graders and the Puppy Dog Olympics. Please attend these wonderful programs with your children.
The Elementary Newsletter has some important information this month. On the School Update page, there is a survey for parents. Please sign the slip saying you’ve read the newsletter and enter your child into a drawing for an ice cream sundae or lunch with the principal and a special dessert. There is a section called Highlights of the Year. Parents can read about the exciting things that happened this year and events your child may experience next year. We have also included a registration form for the 5K Run/Walk that the VMEPC will be sponsoring during Kids Day on June 5.
Thank you for another great year at Van Meter Elementary! Thanks to staff members and volunteers who spend hundreds of hours planning tremendous learning experiences for our students. We are already preparing for next year and look forward to working together to provide the best learning environment for our students.
Dr. Maribeth Arentsen
Calendar
April 29 Kids Club Activity Center
May 4 Kindergarten Concert 6:00 Activity Center
First/Second Grade Concert 7:00 Activity Center
May 6 Wax Museum 9:00am & 6:00 pm Activity Center
May 12 Early Out Inservice 2:15 Dismissal
May 14 Character Counts Assembly 2:00 Activity Center
May 27 Puppy Dog Relays 11:30– 3:00
June 1 Last Day for Kindergarten
Rain Date – Puppy Dog Relays
June 2&3 New Kindergarten Orientation
June 3 Sixth Grade Graduation 1:00 Activity Center
June 4 Last Day for Students
First/Second Grade Awards 9:00
Third-Fifth Grade Awards 10:00

Thank You to Our Volunteers
April 19 – 23 was Volunteer Appreciation Week. Students wrote letters and made banners for the VMEPC, Helping Hands, School Board and Foundation. Staff members brought treats for the VMEPC and Helping Hands.
Teacher Requests
We ask that parents do not request specific teachers for next year. Teachers work hard to carefully balance each class.