September 7

Dear 6-9 Families,
Thank you so much for arranging to have your 6th grader attend their homeroom orientation session at school!  I was so happy to see each and every socially-distanced desk finally have a socially-distanced student sitting in it, looking pretty happy to be there!  We have been hard at work getting ready for the first day of classes, and while much is different about the upcoming year, we are very happy to be preparing lessons and class materials for our students!
At the end of the Orientation session, I sent each student home with a copy of the session presentation, which I hope that your student has shared with you.  A few items to note: the school supplies for the students are ready at their desks, but each student needs to have 5 extra large book socks (any patterns or designs are fine!), an old but clean sock to keep the whiteboard marker in, and a reusable water brought to school and taken home at home at the end of each day.  We would like the hardcover textbooks to be swaddled in book socks by September 14.  The school supplies did include binders and pens/pencils/pencil case, but if your student has his/her own items he/she would like to bring in and use, they are of course welcome to do so!  
When packing your student's lunch, be aware that all lunch trash will be repacked into their lunchbox and taken back home.  That will include drink bottles, any plasticware you've packed, etc. If your student has a yogurt cup, for example, have them squish a napkin etc. into the cup when they finish.  The classrooms are not nut-free and there is no food sharing.  6th grade has an earlier lunch than intermediate had last year, so we don't have snack. Make sure each day that your 6th grader has had a protein breakfast. Lunch is at 12:15pm with half of the students eating at their desks in the room while the other half runs around outside (in our designated running-around area) then we switch halfway and the students who were outside running around for a bit will come inside.  We do have cohort-only recess equipment specific to our homeroom for use during recess. 
We are looking forward to the first day!  Leave yourselves plenty of time to not rush. The Magnus health assessment has been streamlined for ease of use. Please be patient with dropoff and dismissal - even in a normal year we all know the first two weeks take a long time while everyone learns what to do and the younger students learn how to exit their cars more quickly.  At dropoff, your 6th grader will enter through the gym doors.  At dismissal, your 6th grader will reappear via the gym doors.  In a recent email from STM you should have received the dismissal last-name schedule.  If you don't have this information please email me and I'll forward the school email to you. 
The gaiter color for the first day is royal blue - navy blue for MWF and royal blue for T Th.  
I think that's everything: get some book socks, find an old clean sock, make a packed lunch and bring a refillable, reusable water bottle, wear the correct uniform, and the royal blue gaiter, and do the health assessment. If you have any questions I haven't answered, please email  me!  I'll do my best to answer the question and if I can't, I'll put you in touch with a person who can!
Best wishes for a relaxing Labor Day weekend, and we'll see you on Tuesday!
Mrs. Morgan

Jodie Morgan
6-9 Homeroom Teacher
Sixth Grade Reading and Language Arts/ Seventh Grade Reading Teacher
St. Thomas More Cathedral School
105 N. Thomas St.
Arlington, Virginia  22203