Important Class Information


    Welcome to Kindergarten at Highland Park Elementary! My name is Steve Abenth and I will be your child’s teacher this year. I am one of three kindergarten teachers at H.P.E. This is my sixth year teaching kindergarten here at Highland Elementary but my 16th year teaching at Highland Park Elementary (I taught 10 years in 4th grade!). I am looking forward to a great year working with you and your child!

    Below, I have included information regarding events, reminders, and procedures you will need to be aware of as we start the year. I will update you regularly on these types of items through our kindergarten newsletter.  Other information you will find on my website includes a supply list and donation wish list, kindergarten word wall words, our daily schedule, and more!


    Teacher Contact Info

    Mr. Abenh - Room # 1112

    E-mail:   Phone # (651) 293-8770


    School Hours

    9:15 - Breakfast is available and students can enter the building and classrooms. Please do not drop you child off before 9:15, there will be no supervision for them and they will not be allowed to enter the classrooms.

    9:30 - student should be in their classroom by 9:30 and final bell rings at 9:35. If they enter after this time, they will be marked tardy.

    4:00 - School ends



    Please make sure your child attends school every day and arrives on time. Good attendance habits need to be developed from the beginning. If your child will be absent/late please notify Terri in the office at 651-293-8770 or by email prior to the absence @

    If your child has an appointment and will need to leave early or come late, you will need to sign your child out and/or check them in at the office. If your child needs to leave school early, a written notice is required that morning or before (paper or email).



    Please keep your child home if they:

    • Have a fever of 100 degrees or more (must be fever free for 24 hours before returning to school)
    • Have vomited or had diarrhea the previous night or that morning
    • Have a rash that the cause is unknown.



    We ask that ALL kindergarteners wear their transportation tags (supplied by the school) on their backpacks. Students who are picked up will meet their rides at the Saunders entrance. Please follow ALL parent pick up procedures stated by the school.  It is important for ALL families to adhere to these procedures to ensure that ALL students are getting home safely, respectfully and efficiently.  Students who attend Discovery Club will be dropped off at DC by their teacher, and students who walk home or take the bus will be walked to their patrol line or bus line by their teacher.


    The office must be contacted by a parent or guardian if your child has a change in their transportation arrangements.

    If your child rides a bus he/she will always be put on the bus unless I receive a note from you or get a message from the office. In an emergency, please do not leave a message on my voicemail or e-mail regarding information for that afternoon, as I may not get it in time. I cannot accept verbal messages from your child or a sibling regarding this matter. I cannot put a child on a different bus than assigned. You will need to contact the office to make necessary arrangements if their bus information is to be changed.

    PLEASE...NEVER EVER take your child from school...out of line...from an assembly or event...or from a field trip, during school hours, without FIRST letting their teacher and the office know. - Thank you.  I enjoy not having major cardiac events. :)



    Kindergarteners eat lunch at 11:30. Your child may bring a lunch from home (this can not be put in a school refrigerator) or you may buy school lunch. Please go to for information on setting up a lunch account or see the office about paying by cash or check.   A lunch menu is available online on. If your child buys lunch at school, they will receive a pin number. Please help your child learn their pin number. Please send money in a sealed envelope and remind your child to give it to me when they arrive at school.



    We will go outside everyday (usually twice) unless it is raining or the temperature is below zero degrees. Please send your child in weather appropriate clothing.   To be excused from recess we will need a note from your child’s doctor.


    Extra Clothes

    Accidents happen here at school, whether it is a bathroom accident, a spill from lunch, or wet from the slushy playground. There are many times your child may need a change of clothes. We do have a limited supply here at school, so we ask that you put a shirt, pair of pants, underwear, and socks in a zip-lock bag to leave in your child’s coat room bin.


    Home Folders and Newsletters

    On the first day of school I will provide the students with a folder that says, “Home Folder”. This is a tool help us to communicate and to encourage your chaild to stay organized.  This folder will be sent home every Thursday and should return to school by the following Wednesday. Be sure to check for any announcements, newsletters, homework or notes. It will help us to ensure that we are working as a team to support your child’s growth.



    There are many ways you can volunteer in the classroom or support our kindergarteners.

    *Help on special occasions such as field trips, art residencies, and special event nights. These are items you will receive information on in the KG newsletter.

    *You can help before or after school with items such as washing tables, sharpening pencils, filing, sorting/cutting/stapling, or hanging up student work.

    *Participate in Site Council or our PTA.


    Book Bags

    Later this Fall, a book bag will come home weekly with your child’s home folder. In the bag will be a reading log and a book that your child should read and practice as much as possible that week. These books are at their current reading level. Have your child read and reread these books throughout the week. Record the book title on the reading log and include any additional books that are read to or with your child that week. This log should stay in their book bag. Return the book bag with the books to school the next week by Wednesday. I will check their log, swap the books for new ones, and connect a new copy of the log if needed. Every time your child fills up their book log, they will receive a little “treat” from me.  Hooray for reading!


    Gym Shoes

    All students need to have gym shoes for gym. Please make sure they have them on or with them on gym days or they will be unable to participate.  A pair of gym shoes can be left at school if needed.


    Student of the Day

    Each student will have a chance to be the student of the day. They will get to be interviewed by their classmates on their favorite things. Each student in the class will create a page in a book for them. Your child will bring home an “All About Me” sheet to complete with their families and return to share and display at school.



    Families are asked to supply a whole class snack each month that can be shared during snack time (for at least 26 students). Students will also receive milk for free during snack. If you are able to provide additional snacks to help other families, it is greatly appreciated. Health rules require that we serve store bought items only. Healthy snacks are encouraged.  We are a NUT-FREE classroom. Please do not sent any items that contain peanuts or tree nuts.  Thank you!



    Often children like to bring in a special treat for their birthday. In accordance with the school district’s wellness policy we suggest treats like crackers, pudding cups, frozen yogurt, etc. Non-food items are also a great choice: stickers, pencils, etc. If your child has their heart set on a sweet treat then purchase mini portions. Children who have a birthday in the summer will celebrate their birthday with the class at the end of the school year.


    This is sure to be a wonderful year!



    Steve Abenth