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Second Grade Veteran’s Day Unit

                Second Graders completed their Veteran’s Day unit just in time to celebrate the holiday. They learned that Veteran’s Day is celebrated on November 11th because the document to end World War I was signed at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

                The students created a Veteran’s Day Lap Book to take home at the end of the unit. The lap book contains a tabbed section that tells about where each branch of the military works and what their uniforms look like. Other sections include vocabulary associated with Veteran’s Day, a brief history of the holiday, and something that a second grader could do to be a hero.

                During the unit, students also read and discussed a Scholastic News article titled “High-Flying Veterans”. The article was about the Women’s Air Force Service Pilots or WASPs. They learned why the program was started during World War II and what kind of jobs the women performed while they were WASPs. These women military pilots were finally considered veterans in 1977.

                Second graders also enjoyed hearing from Mrs. Franz, Mr. Kerry, and Mr. Tony. They talked about the branch of the military in which they served and what their jobs were. Students especially enjoyed seeing videos of the planes that Mr. Kerry worked on and seeing Mr. Tony in his uniform.

                We want to say thank-you to all veterans, but especially the three veterans who work at CES!


We have had a very busy and exciting first quarter and part of second quarter.  The class has been learning all about colors, apples, pumpkins, counting to 5 and recognizing their names.  On top of that we have been working on fine motor skills like cutting, coloring, lacing and tracing names.  Cannot forget about manners, social skills and technology integration. Even though we only have each class twice a week for 3 hours, we are constantly growing, moving and having fun.  This is my first year as a preschool teacher and learning right along with the students.  

Coming up in the near future we will be finishing up our color unit and moving on to letter recognition, rote counting to 30, shapes and so much more.  It has been a huge honor to work with the kiddos I do and looking forward to the next set of projects.  Please enjoy the pictures from Halloween parade and a student’s birthday party!


PartyHalloween Parade

Reading can be a challenge for many students as they all learn differently. At CES, we have several different resources we use to help students make progress with their reading skills. 

Some special education staff are working with students with a new phonics curriculum. This new curriculum is giving students additional instruction to help them with decoding and blending accuracy. Staff assess students in the beginning and find a good starting point for them. Once that is completed, students are given oral phonemic awareness instruction daily that moves quickly, but is very effective. The students also learn letter sounds and vowel team sounds so they have another reading skill to use when they come to an unknown word.  We are excited to have another resource to help students improve in reading!

-- Rachel Franz and Jordan Gumm 

First Grade Reading

By Sonia Erkenbrack

A day in the life of a first grader is very busy.  Here at Concordia Elementary, learning is fun!  In first grade the students have been learning about Vowel Town and how to attack words when reading.  We warm up every morning by reviewing  reading skills and strategies.  First graders at CES can be found reading their levelled books, sight words, and participating in Tier Time.  A variety of teaching styles are used to keep the students motivated and on task.  We implement large group and small group discussions as well as, progress monitoring students to see if they are comprehending the skills being taught.  At Concordia Elementary, technology is also integrated into reading instruction.  All first graders use chrome books and a smart board daily.  Lexia Core 5 is a computer program that allows students to have an individualized learning experience. This program is used in conjunction with Pathways to Reading to enhance learning.  Our community is very fortunate to have such dedicated staff and administrators.  Teaching children to read is a huge undertaking and our district has made the commitment to do it the right way!  I want to take this opportunity to thank my grade team, support staff, parents of my students, and administrators for working with me, side by side, on this journey.
                   Student workingStudents workingStudent Working


Pre-K News:

The pre-k students have been very busy at school.  We are learning many skills through developmentally appropriate play activities.  Some of the things we have been doing include: hunting for letters like a detective with our magnifying glass (see picture below), counting to 10, counting sets of objects, cutting, drawing a person with all the body parts, dressing the babies, cooking in the kitchen, setting the table, marching, clapping on the strong beat, building houses and garages with blocks, and putting our coats on and off independently.  

We have had some special activities too!  The firefighters came to visit our classroom and taught us about fire safety.  We practiced how to stop, drop and roll.  We also got to see the inside of the ambulance (see pictures below).  The firefighters are our friends and have a very important job.  We recently visited the pumpkin patch across the street from CES (Charbonneau's).  They taught us about the different kinds of pumpkins, squash and gourds.  We got to see the pumpkin patch with pumpkins that were still green and on the vine and some that were broken open.  They provided some pumpkin games to play. Ring toss on the pumpkin stem and toss the footballs in the tub were our favorites.  We each got to pick out a pumpkin to take home.  WE love fall and everything about it!  (see pictures and video)

We look forward to learning many more things in pre-k to help us be successful in kindergarten.   

Tina Brewer


The Importance of Early Intervention

Many of you have heard the term “early intervention” over the last several years.  I am a true believer that it works!  As a special educator I have worked for many, many years as one of our early childhood special educators in this community.  I have worked with a number of children that had very few, if any words, poor motor skills, limited knowledge and poor social skills that are now talking, moving, interacting with others and working at the same level as their peers once they are in grade school. 

I am now working with Kindergarten students with special needs and often think, if only we could have been working with this child when they were 2 or 3, he/she might be doing…. by now.  If you notice your child struggles with thinking skills, social interactions with others, speech/language or motor skills, please call LCNCK at 243-3294 for a screening.  LCNCK conducts monthly screenings in Concordia or surrounding communities and would be happy to schedule an appointment for you!

Angie Gabel-McConkey

Special Education Teacher

Accelerated Reader at CES

If you have a third grade student at CES they are working on an Accelerated Reading goal each nine weeks.  Their goals are set between themselves and the advice of their teacher. At the end of the nine weeks the students are rewarded with some sort of celebration.  For the first nine weeks we will celebrate by playing games and having snacks. The students worked very hard this nine weeks to achieve their goals. Parents, if your students are reading a book from home that is not from the CES library, there is a good chance that it has an AR Test that goes along with it.  All you have to do when your student finishes the book is write the title down and their teacher can help them find the test in the AR program. You can also visit the following link: to see if there is a test associated with the book. Accelerated Reader points will be due toward the end of each nine weeks! HAPPY READING!!!

 – Laura Barta

Kindergarten Field Trip

October is a busy and exciting month! Kindergarten students got to experience their first field trip!  This year, the kindergarten classes visited the Courtland Depot and Belleville Park. The students were overjoyed to ride the bus with all of their friends to go on this adventure.  “ Are we there yet?”

First, the students traveled to the Courtland Depot to learn about pumpkins and apples. Students were divided into groups for various activities including a hay bale maze, apple slushy station, an informational pumpkin station, and a demonstration on how to make apple cider with a real apple cider press!  Students sampled the apple cider after crushing the apples themselves! Yum! Students also got to choose their very own pumpkin to take home!

Next, the students arrived at the Belleville park for lunch followed by play time! Students enjoyed getting to play on a different playground in a different town with friends. The day was long and exciting. Fun was had by all!

by Amy Dannenberg


4th Grade Physical Education
By: Alisha Blackwood

Students in 4th Grade P.E. have been working on various stretches for flexibility and a variety of exercise to increase strength.  One of their favorite games so far has been the Rock, Paper, Scissor game that uses agility and thinking to beat the other team. This last couple of weeks all student learned the game of Volleyball and worked on fundamentals of the game. This week they are playing Beach Volleyball.  


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