Ms. Hansen, Advocacy, Kindergarten

Course Description

Advocacy is all about helping the children learn how to advocate for themselves as well as learn important social/emotional skills. Each month we will have a new learning topic for Advocacy time. This topic is shared by the school but tailored to each grade levels needs. Throughout the school year I will be your child's advocacy teacher, as well as their advocate, for academic needs and social/emotional needs, I am hoping that we can work together to let your child be their most authentic self while also learning so much this year! 

Posts

Advocacy Week of February 26th

I wanted to share with parents that we will be having another lockdown drill in the springtime. We will be reminding students what a lockdown drill is and what we do in a lockdown drill. We know this is a delicate subject and often difficult for kindergarteners, so we want to take our time discussing it with them so they feel the most comfortable. 

Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns!

Advocacy Week of February 12th

IMPORTANT! 

On Monday (February 12th), we will be exploring how the biscuit has been transformed through the ages through the work of Black chefs and inventors. To support student learning, we will eat biscuits and make butter as a class! Please let us know if you would not like your child to eat any of these items and bring a substitute for them to eat in place. If you have any other questions or concerns, please let us know as soon as possible. 


Kindness Week

Kindness week is here! For kindness week, the kindergarteners will walk to the bus barn on Wednesday, February 14th and hand deliver cards of appreciation to our bus drivers. You can submit your permission slip here for your child to attend our field trip. Please have your permission slip signed by Tuesday, February 13th. As we will be walking to the Bus Barn, please have your child bring a warm jacket, gloves, beanies, etc. Be prepared for weather if necessary!​

Advocacy Week of February 5th

Specials!

We will be starting a new round of specials this week! On Monday, we will be back with Mrs. M in Art. 


Donation Opportunity and Can Your Kiddo Eat Figs? 

In one of the stories, students will learn about figs and fig trees. If you would like to donate dried figs to our classroom for students to try a fig, please let me know. If you would not like your student to eat a dried fig, please also email me. 


Kindness Week and What About Valentine’s Day? 

Kindness Week is celebrated during the week of Valentine’s Day or the week of February 12th. It is a long-standing tradition at Westgate. We celebrate and spread kindness by doing different activities throughout the week. Each day has a different theme, aligned with the different love languages. ​

Monday – Words of Affirmation​

Tuesday – Quality Time​

Wednesday – Acts of Service​

Thursday – Gift Giving​

For kindness week, the kindergarteners will walk to the bus barn on Wednesday, February 14th and hand deliver cards of appreciation to our bus drivers. You can submit your permission slip here for your child to attend our field trip. Please have your permission slip signed by Tuesday, February 13th. As we will be walking to the Bus Barn, please have your child bring a warm jacket, gloves, beanies, etc. Be prepared for weather if necessary!​

We will be joined with a high school class to build community within our school as well! Sadly, we will not be having any chaperones joining us at this time, but please feel free to email me if you would like to attend our next field trip.


But wait… What about Valentine’s Day? At Westgate, we do not exchange cards, candy, or treats. We instead focus this time on how we can show appreciation to members in the community.

Advocacy Week of January 8th

As we dive into the new year, we are excited to introduce our Advocacy Theme for January: Growth Mindset.


What is a Growth Mindset? A growth mindset is the belief that abilities and intelligence can be developed through dedication, hard work, and perseverance. It's about embracing challenges, learning from criticism, and understanding that effort is the path to mastery.


Skills Students Will Learn: In the upcoming weeks, your child will engage in various activities and discussions across different classes that aim to cultivate a growth mindset. Here's a glimpse of the skills they will be focusing on:


Resilience: Students will learn to bounce back from setbacks, viewing challenges as opportunities for growth rather than insurmountable obstacles.


Perseverance: Embracing the idea that success often involves sustained effort, students will be encouraged to stay committed to their goals, even when faced with difficulties.


Adaptability: Developing the ability to adapt to new situations and learn from experiences will be a key focus, fostering a mindset that values continuous learning.


Embracing Feedback: Students will be taught to see feedback as constructive, using it to refine their skills and enhance their understanding, rather than viewing it as criticism.


Extending Growth Mindset to Personal Lives: It's essential to emphasize that the principles of a growth mindset extend beyond the classroom. Encourage your child to apply these concepts in their daily lives:


Goal Setting: Help your child set realistic goals and work with them to develop a plan to achieve those goals. Celebrate progress along the way, reinforcing the idea that improvement comes with effort.


Positive Self-Talk: Encourage your child to replace negative thoughts with positive affirmations. Remind them that their abilities are not fixed and that they can improve with dedication and hard work.


Embracing Challenges: Teach your child to see challenges as opportunities for growth. Encourage them to approach new experiences with enthusiasm and a willingness to learn.


We believe that fostering a growth mindset will not only enhance your child's academic journey but will also contribute to their overall personal development. If you have any questions or would like to further discuss how to support your child in embracing a growth mindset, please don't hesitate to reach out.

Advocacy Week of December 4th

Field Trip
On Friday, December 8th we will have a Field Trip to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. We will explore the history exhibit and discuss how things are today and how they were different in the past. We will also visit the dinosaur exhibit to explore life cycles. Here is the Permission Slip Link. Please have this completed by Monday, December 4th. Each class will need 3 chaperones. We are always in need of chaperones, so please sign up if you are able. If you would like to chaperone, it is required to have a background check. You can submit a background check here.
 
Each student will need to have a packed lunch. If possible, please have them wear a Westgate shirt (a purple shirt, their kindergarten shirt, or their fun-run shirt all work!).
 
Parent Teacher Conferences
Parent teacher conferences are right around the corner! I would love to meet with you to share what we are learning in the classroom, talk about your student, and answer any questions or concerns you may have. 
 
On Thursday, December 14th, we will have 20 minute meetings in our kindergarten classroom from 8:00am - 8:00pm. On Friday, December 15th, we will have 20 minute meetings online through Teams from 8:00am - 12:00pm. A link will follow when you have chosen a time slot. Here is the sign-up genius to sign up for either an in-person or virtual meeting.
 
In addition to our day-to-day learning, our kindergarten class also worked with Mr. A, our i-Lab teacher, and Mr. Wise, our P.E. teacher. 
 
If you would like to sign up with our i-Lab teacher, Mr. Anderson (or Mr. A), please follow this link to his sign up. 
 
If you would like to sign up with our i-Lab teacher, Mr. Anderson, or Mr. A, please follow this link to his sign up.
 
Holiday Shop 
Our Holiday Shop is a way for students to purchase gifts for their family and friends. We viewed the shop today as a class. Students may bring money in to purchase items during snack time and recess but be mindful that kindergarteners may lose or misplace money. The Holiday Shop is also open after school, so feel free to join your kindergartener when you've picked them up from the car line. 

Advocacy Week of November 27th

Upcoming Events:

On Friday, December 8th we will have a Field Trip to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. We will explore the history exhibit and discuss how things are today and how they were different in the past. We will also visit the dinosaur exhibit to explore life cycles. Here is the Permission Slip LinkPlease have this completed by Monday, December 4thWe will need 4 chaperones for our class. We are always in need of chaperones, so please sign up if you are able. If you would like to chaperone, it is required to have a background check. You can submit a background check here.
 

Advocacy Week of November 13th

Friendly reminder, on Friday, we will be having a whole-grade Thanksgiving feast! We will be doing this from 2:30pm - 3:00pm. Here is a sign-up genius if you’d like to donate food or time to our Thanksgiving celebration. If you do not want your student to eat any of the food on the list, please let me know before Thursday, November 16th.

Advocacy Week of November 6th

As we step into the beautiful month of November, we are thrilled to share with you our social-emotional focus for the month: Gratitude. This month, our students will be taking part in a variety of activities designed to foster happiness and togetherness during their advocacy sessions. 

Gratitude is a wonderful and powerful emotion that reminds us to appreciate the small and big things in our lives. It has been shown to boost well-being, promote a positive outlook, and strengthen our connections with others. We believe that teaching our students the art of gratitude is an important part of their overall education. 

Throughout November, our students will engage in books, videos, and activities that encourage them to reflect on what they are thankful for and to express their appreciation. These activities will not only deepen their sense of gratitude but also help build a strong sense of community within our school. 

We invite you to join us in this month of gratitude by having conversations with your children about what they are thankful for. Encourage them to share their thoughts and feelings, both at home and at school. We look forward to witnessing the positive impact of this focus on happiness and togetherness throughout our school. 

Please start to bring a warm coat everyday. 

Students will go outside for recess (and occasional classes) if the temperature is higher than 20 degrees and if it is not actively snowing. With that in mind, please send your students to school on cold days with warm winter clothing items. A waterproof down jacket, layers, beanies, gloves, wool socks, and scarves are a great way to set your student up for success. We also recommend putting their name in the tag of their jackets to help prevent lost jackets. If your student needs affordable winter items, there are a few locations that sell them nearby:

Advocacy Week of October 30th

Hi families!

Halloween is almost here! Please check out some of the awesome events we have going on. Let us know if you have any comments or questions! We have a few more spaces on our sign-up genius if you want to donate something. Thank you! 

  • October 31st: 
      • Halloween K-4 Carnival 1:30 – 2:30 PM -  It is a Westgate tradition that each year the 5/6 Team hosts a Halloween Carnival for the K-4 students. This is a student only event. 
      • K-8 Halloween Party 2:30 – 3:15 PM - We will be having a Halloween party in our classroom. We will begin the party with Halloween Bingo, afterwards, students will have the option to watch It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, create a monster, make witch hands (made with vinyl gloves, candy corn, and popcorn), play pumpkin tic-tac-toe, or do all three! While we are celebrating together, we have the option to have snacks and treats. We welcome you to donate items on the following Sign-Up Genius. A friendly reminder that all of the snacks should be individually packaged and brought to the front office if the student has difficulty bringing them to our classroom. We also have an opportunity for two volunteers to join our classroom. Each volunteer must have a background check before joining us. Thank you for your support, we truly appreciate it! 
  • Halloween Costume Expectations: 
      • No Masks 
      • No Full Face Paint (except what a student can apply themselves in the time they have to get ready before class parties). 
      • Face paint may not be worn to school. 
      • No Weapons or anything that can be used as a weapon 
      • No inappropriate or offensive costumes – all body parts must be covered 
      • Students K-8 may NOT WEAR THEIR COSTUMES TO SCHOOL. All students will be given time to change into their Halloween costumes. Students will be in classes during the morning. 
      • HS students can wear their costume to school, but all expectations must be followed 

Cold Weather Information:

Students will go outside for recess (and occasional classes) if the temperature is higher than 20 degrees and if it is not actively snowing. With that in mind, please send your students to school on cold days with warm winter clothing items. A waterproof down jacket, layers, beanies, gloves, wool socks, and scarves are a great way to set your student up for success. We also recommend putting their name on the tag of their jackets to help prevent lost jackets. If your student needs affordable winter items, there are a few locations that sell them nearby:

Advocacy Week of October 16th

Hi families! 


I hope you had a restful fall break! Here are some upcoming events and what we will be discussing in advocacy during the month of October: 


    • October 19th: We are going on our first field trip! We will be going to Miller Farms. Students will explore how vegetables are grown, and what they need to survive, and at the end of the trip, they get to pick their own vegetables to take home! We will need 4 chaperones for our field trip. Before you can join our classroom, you must have a background check. It will cost $20, but it is good for the entire school year. You can submit a background check here. Here is our electronic permission slip for our field trip. Please complete it by Tuesday, October 17th. We will be outdoors the entirety of the field trip, so please prepare for any weather changes (bring sunscreen, hats, close-toed shoes, and jackets as needed). Please feel free to bring gloves or reusable bags. In the past, the plastic bags provided broke quickly. Also, students will need lunch to bring on the field trip. We will not be having lunch at school, so school lunches are not accessible. Students will have time for a snack before and after the field trip, so 2 snacks are encouraged to bring as usual. 
    • October 20th: Trunk or treat! Students will get to show off their Halloween costumes and check out some decorated car trunks as they get some candy. The event will be from 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. in the parking lots at Westgate. A huge thank you to the families who donated candy for this event! 
  • October 31st: 
      • Halloween K-4 Carnival 1:30 – 2:30 PM -  It is a Westgate tradition that each year the 5/6 Team hosts a Halloween Carnival for the K-4 students. This is a student-only event. 
      • K-8 Halloween Party 2:30 – 3:15 PM - We will be having a Halloween party in our classroom. We will begin the party with Halloween Bingo, afterward, students will have the option to watch It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, create a monster, make witch hands (made with vinyl gloves, candy corn, and popcorn), play pumpkin tic-tac-toe, or do all three! While we are celebrating together, we have the option to have snacks and treats. We welcome you to donate items on the following Sign-Up Genius. A friendly reminder that all of the snacks should be individually packaged and brought to the front office if the student has difficulty bringing them to our classroom. We also have an opportunity for two volunteers to join our classroom. Each volunteer must have a background check before joining us. Thank you for your support, we truly appreciate it! 
  • Halloween Costume Expectations: 
      • No Masks 
      • No Full Face Paint (except what a student can apply themselves in the time they have to get ready before class parties). 
      • Face paint may not be worn to school. 
      • No Weapons or anything that can be used as a weapon 
      • No inappropriate or offensive costumes – all body parts must be covered 
      • Students K-8 may NOT WEAR THEIR COSTUMES TO SCHOOL. All students will be given time to change into their Halloween costumes. Students will be in classes during the morning. 
      • HS students can wear their costumes to school, but all expectations must be followed 
 
  • Advocacy: In the month of October, we are focusing on the empowering theme of 'Using Your Voice' in our school community. As a community, we play a crucial role in helping our students navigate the challenges they may face at school, including bullying. This month, we encourage you to engage in open conversations with your students about the importance of using their voices to stand up against bullying. By teaching them to speak up, report incidents, and support their peers, we can create a safe and inclusive environment where every child feels heard and valued. Together, let's empower our children to be advocates for kindness, empathy, and respect, ensuring that our schools are places where everyone can thrive.

Our advocacy will cover a range of topics around Bully Prevention and Using Your Voice, including: 

  • Understanding Bullying
  • Communication and Reporting
  • Empathy and Inclusion
  • Prevention

Advocacy Week of September 26th

Hi Kinder Families!

Here are some updates:
  • Johnny Appleseed Day is coming up! On September 26th students will explore the life of Johnny Appleseed, graph apples they taste, and make some applesauce! Our applesauce will consist of apples, cinnamon, and water. If you can, please bring an apple to share with the class on Monday if you have not done so already. Please let us know if you have any concerns! 
  • Conferences will be on October 2nd and 3rd. If you haven’t already signed up, please check out our sign-up sheet here. Our conference sign-up will close on Wednesday, September 27th.
  • There will be no school for Fall Break from October 2nd to October 13th!

Advocacy Week of September 11th

Hi Kinder families!
 
Here are some of the upcoming events for September:
  • Sept. 15th: International Dot Day 
    • International Dot Day, a global celebration of creativity, courage, and collaboration, began when teacher Terry Shay introduced his classroom to Peter H. Reynolds’ book The Dot on September 15, 2009. The Dot is the story of a caring teacher who dares a doubting student to trust in her own abilities by being brave enough to “make her mark”. What begins with a small dot on a piece of paper becomes a breakthrough in confidence and courage, igniting a journey of self-discovery and sharing, which has gone on to inspire countless children and adults around the globe.

  • Sept. 22nd: Fun Run
    • How do you find your fitness? We will have a fun run in the school. Students will each have a t-shirt that they can decorate to show how they find their own fitness. 
  • Sept. 26th: Jonny Appleseed Day 
    • Feel free to have your students dress up in overalls because we will spend the day with Jonny Appleseed inspired content! (Overalls are completely optional! We're having fun with it!)We ask each family to donate one apple to the classroom by Friday, September 22nd so we can make applesauce.

Advocacy Week of August 28th

Hi families!
 
Here are some friendly reminders of the upcoming events this week!
  • This is our first spirit week! The days are as follows:
    • Monday (August 28th) - Pajama Day
    • Tuesday (August 29th) - Throwback Day
    • Wednesday (August 30th) - Crazy Hair Day
    • Thursday (August 31st) - Favorite Book or TV Character Day
  • There's no school on Friday (September 1st) and Monday (September 4th)
  • We will have a virtual curriculum night this Thursday, August 31st. It will begin at 5 pm. If you're wondering what curriculum we use, what you can do to support your student learning at home, and want to ask some questions, this night is for you! An email will be sent with a link to the meeting. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

Advocacy Week of August 14th

Hi families! 

We just finished our first week of kindergarten! I hope it was a wonderful start to this year! For our second week of school, we will continue to learn our RISE (respect, integrity, safety, and empathy) values at Westgate. 
 
Here are a few reminders for this week. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Please remember to check out the rest of our pages here for information on what we will be learning this week. 
 
Snacks
Please provide two healthy snacks that our separately wrapped for your student. If they are getting a school lunch, they still need two snacks. Snacks are not provided with school lunches. 
 

ZERO WASTE WEDNESDAYS!

 

How It Works:

  • Every Wednesday is “Zero Waste Wednesday” here at Westgate. What this means is that if students have a lunch that doesn’t use any waste AT ALL (i.e. nothing to throw away, like baggies, cans, plastic cups, paper lunch bags, etc), then their name will be entered into a raffle. Ten raffle winners will receive recognition over the intercom on Fridays for being the Zero Heroes of the week.

*students who have school lunch will qualify if they accurately sort their lunch into the appropriate trash and recycling AND have a reusable water bottle for the day*

  • Bonus Recognition: If there is an entire classroom that has zero waste lunch one day, let me know and the entire class will receive recognition automatically. I will keep track of the number of days your entire class has done this.
  • Extra Bonus Recognition: The class with the most days with all Zero Heroes at the end of the year will be considered the Zero Hero champions of the year!

Why:

  • The goal is for families to start the conversation about alternatives to lunch waste, like glass or plastic lunch containers, reusable lunch bags and water bottles, and cloth napkins. If a student has any item that must be thrown away (at school or at home) their names will not be entered, and they can try again next week and every week after that. Hopefully, this will instill changes that will go far beyond Wednesdays during lunch time at Westgate.

https://www.westgateschool.org/apps/pages/waste

Welcome to Kindergarten!

Hello!


I am Jocelyn Hansen and I am your child’s Advocacy Teacher, which means that I am their Advocate. Please check out my personal page if you'd like to know a little more about me. Advocacy is our main time for social-emotional learning, but most importantly, is a special subject to build our supportive community. As your child’s Advocate, I am your primary point of communication, and I am committed to advocating for your child this year.


I am a 2nd year teacher and joined the Westgate community January 2023. I grew up surrounded by inspiring teachers, especially my grandmother, who constantly supported and encouraged my love of learning. My goal as your child’s teacher is to provide a safe and welcoming environment where they can grow.


I have subscribed you to my Advocacy page so you will receive updates to your email automatically. Please follow this link for the other class pages to see weekly updates, academic information, upcoing events, and other information.


For specials the first half of this quarter, your child will have Music with Mr. Hopson. The second half of the quarter will be Art with Ms. Houghton. You are not pre-subscribed to their Edlio pages, so please go to their pages and subscribe!


This month, our August Advocacy theme is RISE!  

 

At Westgate, Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) is a part of our Whole Child Education program. PBIS is a system in which students, staff and community create a set of school-wide behavioral expectations/ core values, we teach those expectations in all of our various environments, and then we CELEBRATE when we see students doing those things! At Westgate, we RISE (Respect, Integrity, Safety, Empathy).  

 

Week 1 

R 

 

What does RESPECT mean? 

Being kind to people, property, and yourself. Being considerate of our community.  

Week 2 

I 

 

What does INTEGRITY mean? 

Telling the truth and doing the right thing even when nobody is looking. 

Week 3   

S 

 

What does it mean to be SAFE at school? 

Act in ways that won’t harm yourself or others. 

Week 4 

E 

 

What is EMPATHY? 

Understanding and caring about the feelings of others. 

 

We will be teaching students what these 4 words mean—focusing on a different part of RISE each week—and what it looks like to live these values out during school and at home. We will use RISE all year to celebrate positive behaviors.


I am so excited about this school year!