Expectations and Policies

Mrs. Rayens’ 5th Grade Class

Expectations and Policies

 Email: lauren.rayens@dcsdk12.org     lrayens@dcsdk12.org

 Blog: laurenrayens.blogspot.com 

Welcome to 5th Grade!  I am looking forward to having a successful year with you and your student. Below you will find a few of the policies that will be in effect in my classroom throughout the year. Please be sure to check our class blog at http://laurenrayens.blogspot.com periodically for additional information and updates on activities we are doing in class.  If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to e-mail me at any time. 

Homework: Homework will be assigned on a daily basis. Students are expected to turn in homework completed and on time.  All homework needs to be completed in pencil. Students should not use pens or markers when completing their work, unless the assignment asks them to use those materials. Students should read for 20 minutes a night.  During this time, students may read anything that is age appropriate and parent approved. This may include chapter books, magazines, newspaper articles, etc…   In addition to their nightly reading, students will typically have a math and spelling/vocabulary activity. Homework should typically take 40- 50 minutes to complete.  Please help to encourage responsibility by making sure your student has his/her homework completed and turned in on time.  Homework will be reviewed in class and students will have the time to ask questions on problems as needed.  I do not grade homework, as I strongly feel that it is a time for learning and practice.  In order to prepare for middle school, I highly recommend that you allow your student to be responsible for completing his/her work each night.  

Behavior: Students are expected to follow all class and school rules, at all time.  When a student makes a poor choice, he/she will receive a warning.  This allows the student an opportunity to reflect on their behavior and continue on with their day, focused on making better choices.  If a student does not modify their behavior and must be spoken to a second time, they will be asked to write a short note in their planner explaining their behavior to their parent or guardian. I will initial the note, before students are dismissed at the end of the day.  If your student comes home with a note in his/her planner, please initial the note so that I know the behavior was discussed and you are aware of the situation.  If a student needs to be spoken to a third time, I will make additional attempts to contact the parent or guardian via phone or email.  Students that make good choices throughout the week will be rewarded with a variety of incentives throughout the year.  This year we will focus on making positive choices, owning our actions, and discussing alternative choices when poor decisions are made.

Planners: Fifth grade is an important year for students to learn how to organize and properly use their planner.  I require students to use their planners to record important dates to help them prepare accordingly.  Students are expected to bring their planner to class daily.  Students are responsible for recording assigned homework in their planner the first morning of every week.  At that time, they will record homework for the entire week.   To build responsibility, students are expected to take their planners home every night, including Fridays.  This gets them in the habit of taking something to and from school each day. I do not sign planners. or check them. However, if your child doesn't have anything recorded for the week, please let me know and I will make sure that he/she record the appropriate information.  In addition, if you need to send me a note, it's better to send a quick email, as I typically check it throughout the day.

Teacher/Parent Communication: Please feel free to correspond via e-mail (see information located at the top of this sheet). When sending a note of any kind, please remind your child to give it the teacher at the beginning of school.  If you do not receive a response within 24 hours, it is very likely that the note was not received.  Please be sure to check my blog a few times a month!  This is a great way for you to stay informed throughout the year.

Grades: Assignments will be graded on a scale of 1-4.  Below is a quick reference for you to use when looking at your students work.

4 (check +)= The work is exceptional and the student’s explanation, quality of work, or evidence of deep thinking is above and beyond expectations

3 (also noted with a check)= The work is clear, well explained, and meets all expectations at a 5th grade level

2 (check -)= The work meets some expectations, but may be a little unclear or have minor inaccuracies

1= The work is inaccurate or unclear and does not meet expectations

I strongly believe in giving students time to explore and learn new ideas and concepts.  Therefore, not every assignment will be graded.  I do look at each item that is collected and may simply write a few comments to help guide the student. 

Special Events: If you would like to bring in a special treat to celebrate your child’s birthday, please let me know in advance so that I can plan our schedule accordingly.  Those special times will be celebrated during the last fifteen minutes of the school day.  This year we will have four parties: Halloween, Winter Holidays, Valentine’s Day, and the end of the year.  I’d love to make these events special, since this is the last year in elementary school for our students.  Please keep an eye on the blog for specific dates and volunteer requests, if you’d like to help out!

Classroom Volunteers:  Volunteers are welcomed and encouraged, however please arrange an agreeable time with the teacher. All volunteers must sign in at the office upon each visit.   

Student Mailboxes: Each student has a mailbox in our classroom.  Papers will be distributed through the mailboxes throughout the course of the week.  Each Thursday, students will take everything from their mailbox and will place all items into their Thursday folder.  This procedure will help students build the independence they need to be successful in middle school.  Any papers that are stamped “sign and return” need to be returned to the correct teacher the following day.  Assignments that are submitted online through our Google Classroom, will also be returned online.

Absences: It is important for your child to be at school every day.  Many lessons are hands-on, conceptual, and driven by peer discussion, which makes it difficult for a student to make-up every lesson. Unforeseen illnesses and events may cause your child to miss a few days of school throughout the year.  If your child is absent for multiple days or if you know they are going to be out, please inform me ahead of time. When a student misses a day of school, he/she is responsible for obtaining the make-up work on the day that he/she returns. Students are always responsible for their weekly  reading response letters.

Snacks: We will have a morning and afternoon snack each day.  Please make sure to pack a small, easy snack for your student.  It should be something simple, such as a granola bar or piece of fruit to get them through the morning and afternoon.  I highly discourage snacks that are high in sugar and will not allow students to have candy or soda during snack time. Students are also allowed to have water bottle at their desk throughout the day.  However, if the bottle becomes a distraction, they will be asked to leave it in their backpack during instructional time.

Thank you for taking the time to familiarize yourself with our classroom expectations and policies.  I'm looking forward to having an incredible year with you and your child.  I am always here to help support the growth of your child in anyway I can.  Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions or concerns.  I appreciate all of your support!


Lauren Rayens