Lynnwood’s October newsletter is now available

Hello October Lynnwood Families,

I don’t even begin to know how to thank this amazing community for the overwhelming support and the warm welcome I received when I returned from my medical leave.  I am so happy to be back with my Lynnwood students, staff and families! During this trying time I learned so much about what a community really means.  The love, support and good wishes gave me the strength I needed to heal.  Although it is true that I am still actively battling breast cancer, I bring 100% of my heart and soul to the children everyday.  I think they are learning so much about being kind and having empathy and supporting others during challenging times.  We always talk about teaching the whole child and raising good, kind and caring citizens has always been a part of our work here at Lynnwood.  If my illness can help serve my students in any way I would do anything for them.  I have learned that children and so honest and resilient and observe adults as they take in the world.  The support of this community and the pink T-shirts are teaching them more powerful lessons than they could ever learn in a classroom lesson.  I want to thank you for trusting us to help grow them into kind, caring and inclusive individuals who are able to change the world.  

Our School Psychologist, Shelby Samuel and our school Social Worker Catherine Ricchetti have created a resource of talking points to help the children talk about cancer.  Those talking points were also sent home through e-school messenger.  We are enclosing this resource in the October newsletter as well.  If you are having difficulty talking with your child about any of this please feel free to reach out to Mrs. Richetti or Mr. Samuel here at school at 518-355-7930.  I am also always available to answer any questions you may have. I am aware this has created some concern for some of our families and I apologize for that, but I can assure you we have an amazing team here at Lynnwood supporting your children and I see lots of learning and joy in our classrooms every day.  It is the best medicine ever.  

Lastly, thank you to our amazing PTA for their tireless efforts in organizing the Ribbons for Rizzo T-shirt and other community activities for our school. If you have not yet become a member of our PTA please do so as we need your membership to help keep the programs and events you love alive.  You can see the story  Elaine Houston did on the Lynnwood community on News Channel 13 on October 3 at 5:30 pm and 9:00 pm as well as on News Channel 13 on Sunday morning. It will be in the Today’s Woman Segment.  Spectrum news also came to film the community in their shirts, but I have not yet been told when that will air. I will keep you posted if I hear more about it.  

Enjoy the beautiful Fall weather!



Helping Your Child Eliminate Worry/Anxiety

Childhood worry is not an uncommon problem.  The good news is that 80% of childhood fears and worries are outgrown. That being said it is important that we support our children and provide the skills to manage their worries. Childhood worries are often expressed in tears, with stomach aches, a child who clings, and with refusals to try new things.  Children will take the adults lead.  If we remain calm and let our children know they are safe, that they are strong, and will be fine, they often have an easier time managing worries and fears. 

I often help children differentiate between fears that need to be respected and a fear that needs to be overcome.  Fear is our alarm system and its purpose is to keep us safe. Sometimes that alarm system triggers when it is not really needed.  Being worried about a test, a new teacher, or a birthday party is common for kids but not dangerous.  Being fearful about running into the ocean without the skill to swim is a healthy fear.  I tell my students “If you mom and dad say it is safe, and your teacher says it is safe then this is a fear you learn to overcome.  If your parents and teachers tell you to be careful this is a fear you need to respect”.

I ask children to check in with us adults so we can help them discern that necessary warning of danger as opposed to the overactive worry when things are not dangerous.  Learning this skill is a process that all of our children can eventually master.

If your child is experiencing fears it can be helpful to help them learn to use fear as a helpful tool, is the fear a warning when needed or interference in their ability to live well, learn, or grow. 

Excessive worry, sometimes called anxiety, is a medical condition that often runs in families.  If you think that your child is experiencing excessive worry it could be helpful to consult your pediatrician.  You can also always call me at Lynnwood to discuss your concerns.

Catherine Ricchetti, LSCW-R, School Social Worker       

Hi everyone,

We wanted to reach out with some talking points to support you with talking to your learners if they have questions they ask about Mrs. Rizzo’s cancer diagnosis or cancer in general, especially as we enter Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the school community shows support for Mrs. Rizzo.

In regards to Breast Cancer Awareness Month, you can explain that it is a month where people make a big effort to help people learn about breast cancer and raise money so that people can research science, technology, health care, and other studies to learn new ways to help people recover from breast cancer and other illnesses. You can encourage empathy and empower your learners to study hard in science. Maybe they can be a doctor, medical professional or scientist who helps people with an illness get better. You can share that some people raise money for cancer research by having events like 5k runs to help doctors get the money they need to help. Also, you can share that there are other months where people focus on other illnesses.

We encourage you to speak honestly and simply to your learners. Less is more. Answer the question that is asked but you do not need to elaborate. You can let your students know they can ask anything and that you will do your best to answer. If you do not have the answer you will find out. Lastly, we (Catherine and Shelby) are available to talk with you further about these matters and are available to help talk with your learners. 

Here are some suggested talking points to help you talk with your child about cancer. Should your child experience distress with this issue, please feel free to reach out to our school Social Worker, Catherine Ricchetti, or our school Psychologist, Shelby Samuel., who will be available to support you and your child. You may reach them at Lynnwood Elementary at 518-355-7930. 

Talking Points
  • Cancer is an illness that some people develop.  
  • Cancer is when the cells in your body become ill and grow too fast. Our cells help us grow (K-2). Our cells are the building blocks of life (3-5).  
  • Medical doctors, other health professionals, and scientists help people with cancer get better.
  • Yes, Mrs. Rizzo does have cancer. The doctors are taking care of Mrs. Rizzo and she is getting better.
  • Cancer is not contagious and is not something people can “catch” from someone else.
  • Cancer can hurt but the doctor’s have great medicine to stop any discomfort.
  • Sometimes the medicine to help stop cancer makes people’s hair fall out. Mrs. Rizzo likes to wear a scarf on her head because some of her hair has fallen out. It will grow back.
-Catherine Ricchetti, LCSW-R –  School Social Worker
-Shelby K. Samuel, MS, CAS, NCSP – School Psychologist

October Dates to Remember:

10/04/19 – Re-scheduled Apple Fun Run 1:15p.m. (weather permitting)

10/07/19 – Picture Day

10/08/19 – 5th Grade Field Trip

10/09/19 –Yom Kippur – NO SCHOOL

10/11/19 – Emergency Early Release Day (15 minutes early)

10/14/19 – Columbus Day, NO SCHOOL

10/1819 –  Fall Festival (Ghouls and Goblins) 5:00 p.m.

10/21/19 – Longhouse Week

10/24/19 – Early Dismissal Parent Conferences 11:30

eSchool Messenger – Are You Connected?

eSchool Messenger is an electronic notification system designed to keep parents and the community informed with what’s happening at Lynnwood Elementary School. Receive information about upcoming events, emergency closings and delays. If you are not already signed up, please visit our districts website at and click on the “sSchool Messenger” icon to create your profile and receive the latest school news.

Student Lunch Price: $2.80    Milk: $.60    Breakfast: $1.95

Get Registered for an Online Lunch Account. Did you know we offer the convenience of placing funds into your student’s lunch account online? View your students’ cafeteria account balance and purchases, receive low balance alerts.

Simply visit the district website, from the main page under District Services select Cafeteria Services, you will find the SchoolCafe link. Sign up today!

Parking at Lynnwood Elementary

We kindly ask everyone to use the parking lot whenever visiting the school. Parking along the front curb is strictly prohibited. This is a fire lane and MUST remain open for emergency vehicles. If your car is parked in the fire lane, even for a brief visit, you will be asked to move your vehicle. Also, parking in the “Drop Off” lane is prohibited as well. Please use our parking lot.

Viruses, Ticks and Lice…Oh My!

“It’s just a virus” means we can’t treat with antibiotics. However, it doesn’t mean that your child is OK for school attendance. We all must do our part to prevent the spread of ALL germs. If your child has a temp of 100 degrees or more, or is coughing, sneezing or has a runny nose, or has a sore throat or headache, they should avoid school, stay home and REST. Coughs, sneezes and nasal drainage are major vehicles that germs use to spread among us!  If symptoms persist seek medical attention.

Since school houses a large group of people, we also have another pest to consider, Head Lice. Do your part to prevent spread by looking at your child’s hair periodically. If you find live lice, report it to the school nurse, stay home, treat it and come to the Nurse’s Office the next morning for clearance. Other tips; wear hair up; don’t share accessories, combs or hats.

Also, be aware that Ticks still abound, inspect your child’s (and your pets) skin after outside play.

If you have any questions about these common but annoying pests, contact our school nurse, Laura Rutkowski at 518-355-7930, ext. 3106, or email her at

Nurses Tips

Learning is messy business! Be sure to supply a second set of clothes in your child’s cubby/locker – as the Nurse’s “loan closet” is depleted. This will save you a trip to school if your child gets dirty. The soiled clothes will be sent home in a plastic bag for you to launder.

*Please vaccinate against the flu.

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