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Primary Focus Newsletter

🖍️ The Parent's Guide to Elementary School

Learn about the latest news in education and tips to help your kids thrive in elementary school. Delivered to your inbox every Tuesday. Primary Focus was founded by Natalie Parmenter, a former kindergarten teacher to guide parents through elementary school. We provide information that is often common knowledge to teachers but is not widely known among parents. Primary Focus is dedicated to enlightening parents on all things elementary school so their children can thrive.

Featured Post

Subtle hints parents usually miss

"It'll be fine by dusk light, I'm telling you baby" Something in the Orange by Zach Bryan It's been a while Reader, This is my first newsletter of 2024, and I'm so happy you're here! There are endless things to keep us busy in this life, and it means a lot you've given a little of your time to Primary Focus. What their teacher is trying to tell you... 🚨 Midyear testing is happening and you are about to get a ton of data about your child. I urge you to listen closely to warnings. It's a lot...

5 months ago • 2 min read

"You own it, you better never let it go" Lose Yourself by Eminem Hi Reader, A child's brain goes through a special process called pruning. The same way you may prune a plant, a child's brain prunes synapses that it is not using (synaptic pruning). This is because children learn so much at such a fast pace, it must make room for the newest and most relevant information. This process occurs through your twenties. Why am I telling you this? When you child is on long breaks from school, they are...

4 days ago • 1 min read

"As we go on, we rememberAll the times we had togetherAnd as our lives change, come whateverWe will still be friends forever" Graduation by Vitamin C (sorry for putting this song ack in your head!) Hi Reader, Congratulations to all my subscribers with rising middle schoolers! This is a big life transition for your child, and a huge milestone for you as well. Don't worry, as far as I'm concerned, they'll always be your baby. Whether your child is starting middle school now, or in a few years....

11 days ago • 1 min read

"I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down" Bitter Sweet Symphony by The Verve Hi Reader, This week marks 2 years since I left teaching. It's very surreal to realize that, because I've changed so much since I decided to leave, and yet I still feel like the same person in so many (positive) ways. ❤️🩹 My first year out of the classroom was for healing 🪴 My second year was for growing Here are a few ways I've grown this year: I'm confident in myself. For a long time I felt unsure of...

18 days ago • 2 min read

"I'm rested and I'm ready to begin" February Seven by The Avett Brothers Hi Reader, *Over the next 2 weeks I'll be sending a few extra emails out to promote the Preparing for Kindergarten course. If you'd like to opt out of these bonus emails, but still stay subscribed to this weekly newsletter, you can click here. Many parents are celebrating the beginning of summer- but for parents of rising kindergartners, it may feel very different...like a countdown has begun. Do they need to know how to...

25 days ago • 2 min read

"And if at first you don't succeed,Then dust yourself off and try again" Try Again by Aaliyah Hello Reader! 💕 Wishing all my subscribers a very happy, belated Mother's Day! 💕 I had an interesting conversation with a parent the other day. Their first grader was doing well in school all year, no signs for concern. Two weeks ago, they took their NWEA/ MAPs test and BOMBED IT. Now the parents are stressed. Is there child actually ready for second grade? How can an average student perform so...

about 1 month ago • 2 min read

"We clean up and now it's time to learn" We're Going to be Friends by The White Stripes (such a cute song for new students) Hey Reader! 👋 Welcome to my 7 new subscribers! Have you told a friend about this newsletter yet? Tell them to sign up here. I've been doing a livestream on the Peanut App for a little over a month now. One question keeps popping up during my Q&A with a teacher... Do kids still nap in kindergarten? Sorry to say...no, no they don't. Kindergarten is much more rigorous than...

about 2 months ago • 1 min read

"I'm a movement by myself, but I'm a force when we're together...I'm good by all by myself, but you make me better" Make Me Better by Fabolous ft. Ne-Yo Hi Reader! 👋 Welcome to my 15 new subscribers! Have you told a friend about this newsletter yet? Tell them to sign up here. 🕵️♂️ Some children are so good at avoiding homework, they could be secret agents. There's one technique that could change their tune about this... Have you tried coworking with them? I'm serious- during your next...

about 2 months ago • 2 min read

"Cause I don't want to argue, but I don't want to bite" We Can't be Friends by Ariana Grande What do you think about homework Reader? Homework has always been a controversial topic. Some camps want to pile on as much as possible. Other camps think it is unfair and should be banned completely. The fact is, the amount of homework your child has will vary greatly by the school, and even down to the teacher your child has. But when it comes to homework policies, it feels like parents get left out...

2 months ago • 2 min read

"People are just people, they shouldn't make you nervous." Ghost of Corporate Future by Regina Spektor Hey Reader, Every time I feel anxious around another person, I think of the song quoted today: People are just people, they shouldn't make you nervous. Most of us are just coming and going; living our lives. Of course there are bad people, but not nearly as many as our brains try to tell us. This is exactly why multicultural education is so important. It helps us understand that people are...

3 months ago • 2 min read

Hey Reader, Recently, I've had a few consultation calls with parents of rising kindergartners. I've been asked this question by them and followers so many times I had to address it. Let's talk about summer babies... Kids born in the summer and early fall end up in a funny predicament. Based on school cut off dates, they will either be the youngest or eldest in their class. This is a huge decision parents must make. The difference between a five and six year old is enormous. And when you're...

4 months ago • 2 min read
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