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April News

From the Principal’s Office

Easter_bunniesComing Soon! Summer 2015 Summer Camp

This summer, come and enjoy a fun-filled explosion of summer learning! Our Camp offers fun-filled summer programs for children ages 3-10. Each week, campers jump into action, participating in exciting sports programs, exploring nature, becoming involved in performing and creative arts, playing a part in group activities, and attending special events. Our campers have the opportunity to expand their horizons during the summer, embarking on new adventures, and having fun! Our exceptional program and dedicated staff create an environment that forges lifelong friendships among our campers. We create a summer experience that is unforgettable!

Summer Camp begins June 15, 2015 and runs for ten weeks until August 21, 2015. It includes five days of activities from 6:30am-6:00pm for all children ages 3-10 and is the only program that we run for those ages during the summer. (Infant,, Toddler A, Toddler B, and Beginner programs continue to run throughout the summer but do not participate in Summer Camp) Summer Camp enrollment (T-shirt/craft) fee will be due by April 17th.

Lynette Stoker, Principal

Shari Hale, Asst. Principal

Tulips in a vase, focus on flower in foregroundIn April

  • April 1, 2015 – April  Fool’s Day
  • April 3, 2015 – Good Friday Chesterbrook Academy CLOSED
  • April 5, 2015 – Easter
  • April, 6-10, 2015 – Catawba County Schools Closed  SPRING BREAK
  • April 12-18, 2015 – Week of the Young Child
  • April 15-16, 2015 – Kindergarten Screening @ Mtn. View Elem; 12-6pm by appt.
  • April 19-20, 2015 – Kindergarten Screening @ Blackburn Elem; 3:30-7:00pm by appt.
  • April 22, 2015 – Earth Day 3rd Annual Lady Bug Launch
  • April 22, 2015 – Administrative Professionals Day
  • April 24, 2015 – St. Jude Trike-a-thon

This year, the Week of the Young Child is April 12-18, 2015.  Chesterbrook Academy will be celebrating the WOTYC, sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).  This week honors young children and the professionals who educate them. The theme this year is ”Early Years Are Learning Years”

  • Monday, April 13th will be No Child Left Inside Day w/ sports!
  • Tuesday, April 14th will be Carnival Day!
  • Wednesday, April 15th will be Messy Day!
  • Thursday, April 16th will be Dramatic Play Day w/ Superheroes and Fairytales!
  • Friday, April 17th will be Wacky Day and Teacher Appreciation Day!

Important Information For Parents & Staff

It is very tempting, when you are running late in the morning, to stop at Hardee’s to pick up your child’s breakfast.  Unfortunately, it is against policy for a child to bring in outside food and eat it in front of the other children.  Some children come in as early as 6:30am and may have been too sleepy to eat the breakfast that their parents offered them.  When another child comes in with tempting fast food, everyone wants it and obviously can’t have it.  It is unfair to expect the other children not to covet your child’s food.  If you must pick up breakfast on the way, please make sure that your child finishes eating in the car before coming in.  Remember, we serve a nutritional breakfast to all children at 8:30am each morning.  Please do not allow your child to bring in gum or candy.  We do not allow children to chew gum at our school because of the mess involved if the gum gets in the carpet or, worse yet, a child’s hair.

Although our school is open from 6:30am to 6:00pm each day, no child should be in attendance more than 10 hours per day on a regular basis.  There will always be exceptions, of course, for traffic issues, occasional late meetings, or doctor’s appointments; however, no child should be staying at school from 6:30am to 6:00pm every day.

Summer Camp Enrollment

T-Shirt/Craft Fees for Summer 2015, one time fee due April 17th

  • Ms. Amy – $15.00
  • Ms. Melissa – $17.00
  • Ms. Terry – $20.00
  • Ms. Nikki –  Field-Trippers – $25.00

 Summer Camp Activity Fees

  • Ms. Amy – $5 per wk*
  • Ms. Melissa – $7 per wk*
  • Ms. Terry – $10 per wk*
  • Ms. Nikki /Field-Trippers – $15 per wk*

*Includes all meals, picnic lunches, field trip fees, special event fees, etc.


Tuition: All payments are due on Friday preceding each week.  A $25 late payment fee is assessed after 12:00 noon Monday, no exceptions!

ACH: To avoid a late fee, consider signing up for Electronic Funds Transfer as a back-up. If for some reason you forget to make a payment before 12 noon Monday (i.e. your child was out sick, you went out-of-town, etc…) your payment would be made electronically late Monday evening and you would not be charged a late fee.

Passcode: Entry into our building is pass-code protected.  To ensure that only authorized people gain entrance, please refrain from allowing individuals to follow you into the building UNLESS you recognize them as another enrolled child’s parent or grandparent. HINT: Encourage grandparents or other authorized pickups to enter your pass-code into their cell phone for easy access when they forget.
Parent Referral

If there’s one thing parents love to do, it’s talk about their children’s successes.  When friends ask you about your child’s experiences at Chesterbrook Academy, what type of success stories do you share? Do you mention the personal and educational discoveries your child is making thanks to our advanced curriculum? Do you talk about the new levels of self and social confidence your child has gained thanks to our encouraging atmosphere? New families moving into the area often look for a school by going online. What a shame it would be if they never found out about Chesterbrook Academy in Hickory! Please take a few moments to go online and share your reviews of our school on http://www.greatschools.org.


Whatever glowing reports you deliver about how your child is growing with his or her education, we couldn’t be more appreciative. Thank you for all you do to make Chesterbrook Academy great!

CLICK HERE for Parent Referral Certificate.

From the Education Department

Mother_NatureAppreciating the Wonders of Mother Nature

Spring is here and Earth Day is right around the corner, providing a wonderful opportunity to connect children with nature and reinforce the importance of preserving and protecting the world around us.

Our Links to Learning curriculum uses hands-on activities to cultivate a deeper connection to the earth and foster academic, physical and social skill development.

Below are activities we implement in our classrooms to get children excited about nature, as well as activities and books to read with your child at home.


  • In the classroom: Our teachers provide natural objects, such as leaves, pinecones and flowers for the children to see and touch. We help children associate words with the concrete objects they represent.
  • At-home activity: Allow your child to experience different textured fruits, such as an orange, watermelon and cantaloupe. Talk about what he sees, smells, tastes and feels.
  • Recommended reading: Colors from Nature from PlayBac Publishing and The Earth Book by Todd Parr

BEGINNERS (Ages 2-3):

  • In the classroom: Around age two, children begin to understand interdependencies in nature. For instance, they learn that ladybugs feed on insects that are harmful to gardens, trees and shrubs. On Earth Day, many of our students have the opportunity to release ladybugs to help local gardens.
  • At-home activity: Take a walk outdoors with your child and play a game of “I Spy.” Ask him point out objects found in the springtime, for example a red flower, a blue bird or a colorful butterfly.
  • Recommended reading: Biscuit’s Earth Day Celebration by Alyssa Satin Capucilli & David T. Wenzel and The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle


  • In the classroom: As our Intermediates gain a greater understanding and appreciation for how living things grow, the class may adopt a pet such as a fish or bunny. Students develop math, science and language skills by measuring the pet’s food, observing the pet’s behavior and habitat, and learning new vocabulary. Research shows that when children have the opportunity to care for animals, they practice nurturing behaviors that help them interact in gentle ways with people also.
  • At-home activity: Create a small garden and allow your child to help you plant and water seeds, either outdoors or indoors. Ask him to predict what the plant will look like by drawing pictures in his journal. Check the plant regularly so he can observe and measure changes in growth. Discuss the importance of watering and caring for the plant.
  • Recommended reading: Our Earth by Anne Rockwell and the poem “Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out!” by Shel Silverstein

PRE-K/PRE-K 2 (Ages 4-5):

  • In the classroom: Teachers encourage our older preschoolers to reuse recyclable materials in fun and unconventional ways. For instance, our students use cardboard boxes to create a castle, milk jug lids to sort and match, and plastic bottles to create beautiful, unique artwork.
  • At-home activity: Set up a recycling station using cardboard boxes, and label each box with the words “metal”, “plastic” and “paper”. Throughout the month, ask your child to help sort your family’s recyclables by placing the items into the correct box.  Explain that recycling is just one way that we can be kind to the earth. Ask him to name a few other ways, such as conserving electricity, picking up litter and planting a garden.
  • Recommended reading: A Tree is Nice by Janice May Udry and The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

We create a path for lifelong learning by providing numerous opportunities for children to study and explore nature. These hands-on experiences lead to growth in all areas of development as students transition into elementary school and beyond.

– Lauren Starnes, PhD- Director of Early Childhood Education


A friend caught me up on a story circulating on social media: the report of the mother who explained why she was having a spa party for her seven-year-old daughter’s birthday celebration. (I’m not even going to touch that one.)

The mother was quoted as saying, “I don’t want them to feel that my saying ‘No’ means I don’t love them.”

Let me take a deep breath before beginning.

You are the parent. It is part of your job description to make judgments about whether things are good or bad for your child, whether they fit in with the values you are trying to impart, whether your child is ready for experiences and events or not.

Your child is inexperienced, doesn’t have the big picture, and is very open to being swayed by peers, the media, and everything else that may conspire against what you want to have happen in your child’s life.

Therefore it is absolutely necessary that you get quite comfortable with saying “no”, and quite fluent in explaining reasons why you have made the decision.

When parents confuse children’s transitory distress when their every wish is not granted with demonstrating a lack of love, they are setting themselves up for deep trouble for both themselves and their children.

One notion that we hope to get across to children is that love is unconditional, not coming and going with any little episode in their lives. Saying no, and even being screamed at that you’re the worst mommy ever, doesn’t mean that the bonds of love are diminished—maybe a bit of like for a while!

Furthermore, loving kids has absolutely nothing at all to do with ensuring their eternal happiness. In fact, parental love has to do with wanting the best things for your child, which includes the necessary life lessons that humans can’t always get what they want, and that learning to live within limits is an important skill.

Saying no is as essential to your child’s future health and success as are the vitamins you give and the books you read to him/her.

Show me a child who hasn’t learned how to live with the no’s in life, and I’ll show you a child who is widely unpopular with adults and children alike, and has a vastly inflated idea of his/her own place in the universe.

A parent who confuses setting limits with messages about lack of demonstrated love suggests to me a parent who so desperately needs the approval of even her own child that she is willing to ignore her vital role in preparing that child for future life.

Kids aren’t going to like the no’s, and lots of the time their own self-interests get in the way of understanding the reasons behind them.

But parenting is not done by focus group. It is parents alone who get to make many decisions, and have to apply them with the confidence that this is the best choice for this particular situation.


Branches Filled with Cherry Blossoms

“The educator is like a good gardener, whose function is to make available healthy, fertile soil in which a young plant can grow strong roots.”

E. F. Schumacher (1911-1977)
German-born British Economist and Writer


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