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getting to know mrs russell


Years teaching: 21

Grades taught: TK, K, 3rd, 4th, 5th

Hometown: Erie, PA

Raised in: Irvine, CA

College: UC Irvine

Family: Husband, Jack & Delilah (twins) age 7, Ryan age 2

Favorite Baseball Team: Angels

Favorite Football Team: Chicago Bears

Hobbies: Outdoor activities, AdvoCare Distributor

Favorite food: Anything healthy!

please label items

Please remember to label your child's jackets, sweatshirts, tote bag,  etc. with their name so they are sure to make it back home. 


name writing

You can support your child this month by helping them practice writing their first name correctly.

Our Staff Locker

PPT, Word, Excel Viewers [Go]
Acrobat Reader [Go]


It's a good idea to get into the routine of asking your child about their day. If your child isn't sharing about their day, here are some questions you can ask them to help them remember:


What did you play at recess?

Who did you play with?

Did you earn any TK Tickets? How?

What was your favorite thing about school?

What did you do in centers today? (T & Th)

What did you write in your journal? (T & Th)

What math center games did you play today? (W)

What did you count in counting collections? (W)

What songs did you sing in music today? (Th)

You'll enjoy hearing about their new experiences and it helps them to feel that school is important to you too.


Please read to/with your child 15 minutes every day. Tk homework is assigned at the beginning of the month and collected at the end of the month. The homework will be short activities you will complete with your child. The most important part about TK Homework is to keep it FUN for you and your child.


Homework will officially begin after Back-to-School Night

Save the date.jpg

Transitional Kindergarten


TK Title.jpg

Email Address

Important Dates:

   Wed. 8/10

  • Your child’s Early Bird/Late Owl placement will be announced through the School Messenger message system between 4:00-6:00pm. This will be an automated message that you will receive from Mrs. Schaefer on the primary phone number that you have provided.

   Mon. 8/15 – First Day of School

  • TK parents attend school with their child on the first day.
  • Early Birds – 8:00 – 9:13
  • Late Owls -9:30 – 10:43
  • Please meet on the kindergarten playground before coming into class.
  • No first day flag salute for students.

 Tues. 8/16 - Regular Schedule

  • Early Birds 8:00 – 11:53:  Drop-off is on the line numbers in the back of school for flag salute.    You will learn your child’s line number on the first day of school.   Pick-up is in front of the school on colored lines.  Use the bus lane and put the car sign that you received on the first day of school in the window to pick-up.  It is a valet type pick-up.
  • Late 0wls 9:30 – 1:23:  Drop-off is in front of the school at colored lines - TK is the BLUE line. Please arrive no more than 10 min. before school begins so that your child can be monitored by student supervisors.  Pick-up is also in front of the school on the colored lines on MTThF.  It is a valet type pick-up and drop-off.
  • Plan to say goodbye to your child as they walk into the classroom today.  It is helpful for some children to rehearse that scene at home beforehand.  Keep a cheerful demeanor and let your child know how proud you are of them for going off to class on their own.  If your child is having difficulty separating from you, reassure them that you will see them in just a few hours and then do not linger.  Generally children will calm down fairly quickly once they know mom or dad has left.
  • Students should wear name tags provided on the first day, bring a snack and return their completed Champion Folder with your signature on the back.

Wed. 8/17 - Wednesday Schedule

  • All TK/K students follow the Early Bird schedule on Wednesdays. 8:00 – 11:53am.
  • Students meet at the TK/K lines in the back of the school for flag salute.
  • Pick-up on WEDNESDAYS ONLY will be in the MAIN PARKING LOT.  It is a valet type pick-up.

Thurs. 8/18 - Regular Schedule.

Fri. 8/19  - Regular Schedule

  • First “Spirit Day” (every Friday) – Students are encouraged to wear Chaparral Spirit Wear purchased through the PTA or their favorite sports jersey.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What will I be doing with my child on his/her first day of school?

All parents should plan on attending the first day of school with their child on Monday., August 15. Parents will be helping their children get acquainted with their classroom and teacher. On this special day we have activities set up for you do to with your child and we will answer any questions you both may have about kindergarten.


How are Early Bird and Late Owl classes determined?

We try our very best to accommodate people’s work schedules and older siblings’ school schedule. We also work with the YMCA to determine classes. YMCA hours and the number of students enrolled in their program affects this schedule.


What do we do with school supplies?

School supplies are optional but very much appreciated.  If you have school supplies on the first day of school please bring them to the TK classroom when you walk in with your child (room 8).  No names are necessary because we share all supplies. Thank you so much! 


Why not backpacks and lunch boxes?

We don’t use backpacks in kindergarten because of space constraints.  If you wish, you can purchase a Chaparral canvas bag in the office for $10.   Any other bag that you would like to provide should be large enough to comfortably hold a folder and hang easily on a hook.  Students need to bring their snacks in a disposable bag each day to school.  All bags are disposed of after recess because of ants and birds.


Does my child need to wear his/her nametag back to school?

Yes.  On the first day of school all students will receive nametags.  Nametags need to be worn everyday for approximately the first two weeks. These nametags help teachers, recess aides, staff, and students learn names and identify Early Birds from Late Owls.


When can we sign up to volunteer in the classroom?

I really appreciate volunteers and can’t wait to have you help us in the classroom!  We will have regular sign-ups on Back-to-School-Night in September, but I'd love help before then. Please email me if you are interested in volunteering along with your availability (day/time) and I will contact you to set it  up.   TK loves and appreciates our volunteers @ Chaparral -  you make all the difference in our classroom!!


What are TK Tickets?

When I catch a student being a role model, following the rules, participating, being kind to others, etc. they can receive a TK Ticket.  Children will be encouraged to keep them in a safe spot at home because when they receive a total of 20 they can bring them into class to visit the classroom “treasure box.”  Yeah!!!!


I look forward to having a great year!

Important Dates to remember 2016-2017


15 - 1st day of school for TK students. Parent attends with child. It is a short day.



5th - Labor Day - no school

7th - Back to School Night - min. day schedule (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)



31st - Parent Conferences - no school



1st - Parent Conferences - no school

2nd - Parent Conferences - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)

3rd - Parent Conferences - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)

11th - Veteran's Day - no school

21st - 25th - Thanksgiving Week Recess - no school



23rd - 31st Winter Recess



2nd-6th - Winter Recess continues (school resumes January 9th)

16th - Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday - no school



17th - Lincoln's Birthday - no school

20th - Washington's Birthday - no school

27th - Parent Conferences - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)

28th - Parent Conferences - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)



1st - Parent Conferences - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)

2nd - Parent Conferences - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)

3rd - Parent Conferences - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)



3rd-7th - Spring Recess - no school



29th - Memorial Day - no school



1st -- Last day for students - minimum day (all TK students attend 8:00-11:35 am)

Big day curriculum for TK


Theme: Ready for School

Social/Emotional Focus: Cooperation

Knowledge Focus: Children learn the expectations, routines, and behaviors of school.



Week 1: My School - I am getting to know my school.

Week 2: Making Friends - I will make friends at school.

Week 3: Learning Together - I work and play with my friends at school.

Week 4: Getting Along - I know how to share and I care about the feelings of others.


Theme: Growing Up Healthy

Social/Emotional Focus: Self-Awareness

Knowledge Focus: Children learn about their bodies and how to take care of themselves.



Week 1: My Senses - The 5 senses help me explore my world.

Week 2: Take Care of Myself - I know how to be healthy.

Week 3: Eating Well - I eat healthy foods.

Week 4: Staying Safe - I know what to do to be safe.

November- December

Theme: My Family

Social/Emotional Focus: Kindness

Knowledge Focus: Children learn about family members, family roles, and unique qualities of families.



Week 1: Who's in My Family? - I am an important part of my family.

Week 2: We Take Care of Each Other - I love my family and they love me.

Week 3: Family Fun - I share special times with my family.

Week 4: All Kinds of Families - Every family is unique.

Big Day Themes - Yearly Plan


August-September – Ready for School

October – Growing Up Healthy 

November/December – My Family

January – Imagine It, Make It 

February – Our Community

March – Awesome Animals 

April – Nature All Around Us 

May-June – Moving On 


Number Poems


We are learning the following poems to help us remember how to form the numbers correctly. 

0 - Around and around and around we go – now we have the number zero.

1 - Down the slide it's lots of fun...that's the way you make a one!

2 - A candy cane, a tail for you...that's the way you make a two!

3 - Around a tree... around a tree... that's the way you make a three.

4 - Down...across... (lift pencil up) and down some more, that's the way you make a four.

5 - Down and around, jump up to dive, that's the way you make a five!

6 - Start at the top...mix and mix...that's the way you make a six!

7 - Across the sky and down from heaven...that's the way you make a seven!

8 - Make an S and close the gate...that's the way you make an eight!

9 - Make a loop, dive down the line...that's the way you make a nine!

a note from the teacher

Hi TK Parents!


I am excited to meet you and your child on the first day of school - Monday, August 15th!



Sheryl Russell

Room 8

School Supplies

Listed below are supplies I suggest students bring to class this year to support the delivery of the curriculum. Your purchase of these items is very much appreciated, however is voluntary. This supply list is the same as the Kindergarten supply list (except TK students will NOT need a 3-ring binder).


- Canvas Book Bag (can be purchased in front office). No backpacks please. This style of bag helps identify your child as a TK/K student and will be used to carry their snack, homework folder, Champion Folder, and other items to/from school each day.


(No Rose Art brand supplies please.)

1 Plastic Pencil Box - 8.5" x 5.75" x 2.5"

4 boxes 16 count Crayola Crayons (traditional colors)

6 boxes 8 count Crayola Crayons (NOT jumbo; traditional colors)

1 box of 8 count Crayola Classic Thick Markers

2 boxes Kleenex

15 small glue sticks - no generic please

1 ream white copy paper

1 ream white card stock (65 lb weight)

2 black Expo Markers

2 white "Magic Rub" erasers

12 Large Primary Pencils (Ticonderoga only please)

1 container Wet Ones Antibacterial Wipes

1 8 oz Pump Hand Sanitizer

1 5" Fiskar Scissors

1 Box Ziplock style bags (any size)


Thank you!!

Daily Early Bird & Late Owl Schedules

Early Birds: 8:00 - 11:53 am

Late Owls: 9:30 - 1:23 pm, except Wednesdays 8:00 - 11:53 am


Snack & Outdoor Recess: 10:10-10:40 am


NOTE: All TK/K students attend school on Wednesdays 8:00-11:53 



Early Birds 8:00-11:53

Drop off is at the line numbers in the back of the school for flag salute. You will learn your child's line number on the first day of school. Pick-up is in front of the school at colored lines. Use the bus lane and car signs to pick up your child. It is a valet style of pick up so you will not get out of your car.

Late Owls 9:30-1:23

Drop off is in front of the school at colored lines. Please arrive no more than 10 minutes before school begins. Pick up is also in front of the school on colored lines. It is a valet style of pick up so you will not get out of your car.


Russell - Blue line

Clarke - White line

Schofield - Green line

McLaren - Yellow line

Drop off and pick up: WEDNESDAYS ONLY


All TK/K students follow the Early Bird Schedule 8:00-11:53

Drop off for all students is at the kindergarten lines in the back of the school for flag salute

Since there are more kindergarteners at pick up on Wednesdays, it will be in the MAIN PARKING LOT (not the bus lane). It is a valet style pick up.


NOTE: Parents who are walking to pick up their child should also meet at the MAIN PARKING LOT. Students will only be dismissed from that area.

Weekly Dates to Remember


EVERY Wednesday - Recycle Day (bring cans and plastic bottles to morning flag salute)

EVERY Thursday - Champion Folders go home with your child (please sign and return)

EVERY Thursday is "Mr. Healy Day" - PTA Funded Music Program for TK & K

EVERY Friday - School Spirit Day (wear Chaparral spirit wear or your favorite sports jersey/shirt)

Character Counts


One child will be chosen as Champion of the Month who has demonstrated the character trait for that month. We will let you know ahead of time if your child is chosen so you can attend the morning flag salute when your child is recognized.

Non-Discrimination Statement

The Capistrano Unified School District prohibits discrimination, harassment, intimidation, and bullying in all district activities, programs, and employment based upon actual or perceived gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, ethnicity, color, religion, ancestry, nationality, national origin, ethnic group identification, sex, sexual orientation, marital or parental status, pregnancy, age, physical or mental disability or on the basis of a person’s association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics. Reference: AR 1312.3, BP 1312.3 and BP 5183.

Rich Montgomery, Executive Director, Human Resource Services/Compliance
33122 Valle Road, San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
(949) 234-9200

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