January Newsletter

January 2nd, 2015 No Comments

Dear Parents,

Happy New Year to all of our families and staff! We hope you and your family had wonderful holidays together.

We have a lot in store for your children and for the whole family in 2015.

First of all, I wanted to announce that, based on positive parent feedback in our recent survey, we have decided that we will continue to offer Private Full Day Kindergarten here at Peppermint Tree for the next school year.  The Toms River School District will be offering full day Kindergarten next year for the first time,  however, our small class size and individual attention have proven successful in preparing children for First Grade, and our parents have confirmed through our survey that they would like us to offer it.  We urge parents who are interested in Full Day Kindergarten at Peppermint Tree for Fall 2015 to please register as soon as possible, so we can begin planning appropriately.   ONLINE REGISTRATION FOR FALL 2015 IS NOW OPEN!

In addition, we will also be accepting Kindergarten registrations for children who turn five shortly after the usual October 1 cut off date.  So, children who are socially and academically ready, and who are close to five years of age by the October 1 cutoff date, will also be considered for acceptance into our private full day kindergarten program.  Since we individualize our teaching for each child, and we will have a small class, we will be able to meet the needs of these slightly younger children.  (Director approval is required.)  Please contact Miss Val if you are interested in discussing this option for your child.

And, on Wednesday, January 28th at 6:30 p.m. we will be holding a parent workshop on Kindergarten Readiness.  All parents in our Pre-K and Preschool classes are welcome to attend.  Please RSVP by emailing: val@pepperminttree.com,  so we have enough handout materials and enough seating.  Child care will be offered free of charge, so when you RSVP, please also let us know if you will need child care.

As always, my door is open to you. If there are any questions, ideas or concerns you’d like to discuss, please feel free to call or email me, or stop in.

All the best in 2015!

Valerie Frost-Lewis


On-line Priority Registration for the 2015 – 2016 School Year is now open

We are beginning our in-house priority registration for the next school year, with an on-line registration open to current families only at this time. We provide our current families with an opportunity to save a space for your child in advance of opening registration up to the general public. So, please register soon! We will follow this special online registration period up with paper applications in the next few weeks. If you do not want to wait for the paper application to be sent home, you may go ahead and register online beginning now.

Click on the following link to register on-line for 2015-2016 school year: https://www.pepperminttree.com/registration/

Please remember that the non-refundable family registration fee of $75.00 is due at the time of registration in order to secure a spot for your child. Spaces are saved on a first registered and paid, first reserved basis.

LOCK IN 2014 TUITION RATES BY REGISTERING NOW!  We are considering a tuition increase, however, if you register before April 1st you are guaranteed 2014 tuition rates.    You may view the 2015 tuition costs on our website at: http://www.pepperminttree.com/tuition-and-rates/

Kindergarten Readiness Presentation for Pre-K and Preschool Parents/Guardians – Wednesday, January 28th at 6:30 p.m.

One of the most frequent questions we hear from our Pre-K Parents/Guardians is, “Will my child be ready for Kindergarten?” Miss Val, who holds a Master’s Degree in Education and Mrs. Sullivan, our Kindergarten teacher and our school’s Head Teacher will be presenting a parent workshop on “Kindergarten Readiness” this month to help answer that question. We will discuss the important foundational skills that children need for success in any Kindergarten classroom, whether it is in the Toms River Public Schools, or in our Private Full Day Kindergarten.

We hope you will join us. Please RSVP.  Open to Pre-K and Preschool parents/guardians.

Free Eye Screening will be offered on January 21 & January 22 at 9:30 and 11:30 a.m. – Completed Permission Forms are due by January 16th

The Lions Club will be performing free eye screening for our students on Wednesday and Thursday January 21 & 22.  We are sending home a paper permission form that must be returned in advance, by January 16th, in order for your child to participate.  Students who attend in the morning and those who arrive at 11:30 are able to be screened.  Eye screening is done  in the public school, so our school age children are not involved in this activity.

MARK YOUR CALENDAR: Spread Love One Rock at a Time – Join us for our “Love Rocks” Family Night, January 23, 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Spend an evening together with your child and the Peppermint Tree community making “Love Rocks”, (small rocks decorated with fabric hearts). With this fun family craft activity, we are getting ready for Valentine’s Day, and also teaching our children about acts of kindness.  Make a Love Rock and spread love and joy. These rocks can be given to someone while doing an act of kindness for them, or you can place the rock somewhere special for someone else to find or simply give the rock to someone and just let them know they are loved. We will make Love Rocks for everyone to take home, and a basket full of them for each classroom.  We will be making a toddler safe version,  felt hearts, for our Early Learners Classroom.  Our Strengthening Families Group is planning this event. An RSVP form will be sent out.   Find out more about “Love Rocks” at: http://love-drenched-life.com/love-rocks/

Next Strengthening Families Meeting Tuesday, January 6th at 6:00 p.m.

All staff and parents are invited to attend our next “Strengthening Families” group meeting. At these meetings we work together to plan events and activities for our families. This is a great way to get to know other parents and have a say in what we offer to families at Peppermint Tree. Our “Strengthening Families” group was responsible for organizing our awesome Thanksgiving Feast, and Pajama Night.  At our next meeting, we will be planning our “Love Rocks” family craft night coming up this month, as well as other activities. We hope you will join us! Please send me an email if you can attend (val@pepperminttree.com), or send a note in to your child’s teacher. We provide free child care during the meeting.  (We will be cutting out fabric and felt hearts during this meeting, so if you have any fabric you can donate for this project, please bring it in!)

Miss Val’s “Brain Lessons” will begin over the next couple of months

In the Preschool and older classrooms, I will be visiting the classrooms to help the children in exploring how the brain works, and discovering that the harder they work it, the stronger it gets. We will also be learning that our brain grows when we work it, so you can always improve your skills. The children will be involved in a variety of activities around this theme that include reading books about famous inventors who had to keep trying before they succeeded, singing songs that reinforce persistence, and also doing art projects and movement exercises. This should be fun, and I am hoping to help instill in The Peppermint Tree children a life lesson that will carry them through all of their years in school and into the work place. I developed these lessons based on the latest brain research, and it was the basis of the final work done to complete my Master’s Degree.

Pizza Lunch Reminder

  • First Pizza Lunch (optional) is Thursday 1/15/15- be sure to send in your sign up form and make payment before then so we are sure to order enough pizza.

2014 Tax Statements

Please note that we will send out your 2014 tax statement (that many of you need for your tax returns) during January. Please set it aside for when you work on your 2014 tax returns.


  • Please label all of your child’s belongings that come to school.
  • No toys from home are allowed at Peppermint Tree
  • Please dress your child for outdoor play, including mittens (NOT gloves) and hats. No boots or scarves. If there is snow on the ground, we will not play in the snow, however, we will take the children outside to play in the plowed areas (we place traffic cones to block our driveway when we do this).
  • Please save “BOXTOPS FOR EDUCATION” and send them in to your child’s teacher.  We just received a check for $293.48 from BoxTops!!!  Thank you for sending them in!!   I will report to you how we use these funds.
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