October Newsletter

 Dr. Connie Cottongim, Principal                                                                                                              Tanya Morgan, Assistant Principal

Learners Today.  Leaders Tomorrow.

Principal News

Happy October, one of the most beautiful times in Sevier County.  I want to thank all of the people who have helped to get the new year off to a great start as we end the first 6 weeks of school.  Our faculty, staff and administration team have stepped up to the plate to implement the RTI program again this year and to make sure each student has a successful year.  We have had many community members to bring in supplies and to offer help for many of our students.

I would like to thank the City of Pigeon Forge for all of its help and assistance.   Pigeon Forge Rotary Club also is a tremendous asset to our school by providing funds for student needs and learning opportunities, the dictionary project for our 3rd grade students, our annual Christmas Party for students and our clothing and shoe closet.  The Rotary Club constantly is ready to listen and to help in anyway.  Much hard work goes into their craft tent each year to help our schools.

Our “Festival at the Forge” was a huge success and I saw many families and watched children enjoy all the fun and games.  A big thank you to our faculty and staff for their help in planning this and to Cindel Reed for spending many hours organizing the entire event.  The Parent Advisory Board also spent several days gathering items and putting baskets together for our auctions.  Also, we could not have done this without the help of our many businesses in the community.  Thanks to each of these businesses that supplied items for the festival. 

With this in mind, I believe that we as a community and school recognize the important components of a good school as the partnership between the school, community and parents who work together for the best interest of children.  The close partnership between home, community and school is one of the exceptional strengths at Pigeon Forge Primary. 

Follow us on Twitter @pfptigers.  There is also a link from our webpage.  We encourage you to join to get school wide information including late buses and closings.  


--Dr. Cottongim--


We welcome Jenna Williams as our newest staff member.  If you have been in the office you have already met her in her new role as school secretary. 


October Events

1st         Fall Pictures

5th         Grade Cards

7th         Muffins for Mom (1st Grade)

9th         K-2nd Children’s Health Fair Day

22nd       3rd Grade Program

27th       Science Avengers (pick-up at 4:30)

23rd-31st Red Ribbon Week


Pre-School News

Preschool has gotten off to a great beginning! The children have become good friends and we have even had our first field trip to Sevier County Fair. We visited cows, chickens, produce, and crafts. The play areas that were set up were particularly fun: a corn pool, an old timey play area, and water troughs and old hand pumps. Hamburgers, funnel cakes and snow cones were provided by vendors for lunch.  Preschool is now looking forward to a field trip to Kyker Farms Pumpkin Patch. Until then we are learning about trees and watching for the leaves to change colors. Happy Fall!

Pre-K News

Pre-Kindergarten is off to a great start and we are so happy to see that the children are transitioning so well to school! In October, we will continue to get to know each other better and focus on learning our school rules and routines. Be sure to check your child’s folder every night so you are aware of and can reinforce what we are doing in the classroom to help your child be successful. Please remember that it is very important that your child be in the classroom by 9:05 and stay until 3:00 every day that he or she is not ill. Also, please reinforce self-help skills at home by encouraging your child to dress and undress themselves, handle all eating independently and clean up after themselves. Your child should be walking into the classroom and carrying their own backpack every morning as we encourage their maturity and independence at school.


Kindergarten News

Kindergarten teachers would like to thank all the parents for checking folders daily and signing the homework calendar. Remember this teaches your child that you value school work, learning, and connects you to his/her day. Bringing your child to school on time also teaches responsibility. Fall brings Kindergarten's exciting seasonal things to learn about like apples, pumpkins, leaves, and weather changes. Remember jackets on cooler days. We will still be having recess unless the weather is less than 40 degrees. This month we are learning to write our numbers 0-20 and letters M, S, A, and T. Please review the following popcorn words with your child: I, like, the, and, see, we. Thank you for all your help at home. 


Jr. Primary News

Junior Primary is off to a SUPER start. We are reading and getting stronger with our letter sounds.  We will be learning ending sounds and making CVC words with our vowels. We are showing how to be trustworthy by doing what is asked with our best effort. Your child needs to practice counting to 100 and reading and writing their October words. We test at the end of each month.  Make sure you read to your child nightly.  Looking forward to a crisp Fall.


First Grade News

First graders have been working very hard this first six weeks of school.  We are beginning our  2nd reading book and we will be working on many new skills, such as short vowel word families,  double final consonants (ll, ss, ff, ck, ), blends (sk, sl, sp),  and complete sentences.  Please continue to check and sign planners each night.  Also, don’t forget to review reading, spelling and vocabulary words.   We are very excited about “Muffins for Moms” on October 7th.  We hope to see lots of moms at school that day!  Just a reminder that school attendance and punctuality is extremely important.  It is very difficult to make up the skills that are missed.  Thanks for reading with your child every night.  Working together, our first graders can be successful.

Remember……..  Always end the day with a positive thought.  No matter how hard things were, tomorrow’s a fresh opportunity to make it better.


Multi-Age News

Thank you to all the families that attended our Fall Festival.  We hope everyone had a great time!  We are planning a very special event this month.  Please watch for more information to come home in your child's folder.  We appreciate you for spending time each night listening to your child read.  Remember to practice vocabulary and spelling words while you are doing nightly homework.  It will also be beneficial for your child if you go over and help correct what they missed as you are looking over his/her graded papers.  Please remember to check your child's folder and sign their planner each night.


Second Grade News

Wow! Can you believe the first six weeks is over? It flew right by us. Here are some helpful reminders to parents and students. First, please make sure you are signing your child’s planners every night. This is where you will find homework assignments, important notes, and other important dates. If you need to write your child’s teacher a note please write it in the planner.

Secondly, it is so very important for our students to succeed that they must read every night. This is great practice for them and you can help by asking questions related to the story. Make sure you are reviewing those spelling words too. You may find a Reading Focus Wall in your child’s folder, this focus wall includes vocabulary words, spelling words, and other reading skills for the week. This is a great tool to use to study. Second grade teachers are ready to have some students on the A.R. Wall of Fame!

Don’t Be Tardy For The Learning Party! Every day is an important day at school. You do not want to miss anything during the day so please be on time and avoid early checkouts if possible. If your child is absent please check to make sure they have completed their make-up work.  We have had several situations where students are missing several assignments because of absences. We do not want student’s grades to change just because of missing make-up work.

Second grade teachers are asking parents to have their children wear sneakers every day, NO FLIP FLOPS! As it starts to get cooler outside please send your child to school with a light weight jacket or hoodie. Look out Fall here we come! Be on the lookout for fun Fall activities taking place in your child’s class!

We are super excited to be preparing for our field trip to watch Junie B. Jones live theater production in Knoxville. Please look for information to be sent home soon.  


Third Grade News

October is going to be a busy month for our third graders.  We are preparing for our 3rd Grade Program.  It will be held in the playroom on October 22nd.  We look forward to seeing each and every one at the program.  Please be sure to read every night with your child and study those spelling and vocabulary words.  Ask your child to share their AR books with you.  They should be reading 15-20 minutes every night. Also, continue to practice multiplication facts with your child nightly.  Parents make sure your child is on time to school.  Thank you for all the ones that are there and thank you parents for all you do and your support!


Fourth Grade News

On October 8th, fourth grade will begin 4-H Club meetings, and we will meet once a month during school hours.  Your child will receive detailed information about the 4-H program the day of the meeting.  Please take time to read over the information with your child.  Sevier County 4-H Program is recognized across the state as having one of the best in school 4-H educational programs.

We will be ordering class T-shirts in the next few days.  If you have not already done so, please make sure you turn in your child’s size to the homeroom teacher as soon as possible.

As always, please remember to sign your child’s planner each night and make sure he/she is reading AR and studying multiplication facts every day.

A big “thank you” to everyone who donated items for our Fall Festival class baskets.  We appreciate you and your support! J


Mrs. Ball’s Class

Our class has been talking about all the wonderful changes of fall.  We have done a 1st day of fall walk and noted the very beginnings of colored leaves.  We will continue to check on the trees as we go deeper into the fall season.

We are excited for many of our students who are now taking spelling tests as they learn to blend sounds to make words.  Please check the planners for weekly words to study.  Friday is usually our spelling test day.

In math we are continuing to learn the names and values of coins.  It is always helpful for the students to practice counting pennies and nickels at home.  Counting by 5’s can be challenging.  Students are also continuing work on reading numbers and counting out sets.

We are learning the differences between city and country in social studies.  We will be making scenes of both and comparing.

October brings pumpkins.  We will be making a trip to Kyker Farm on October 21st, if weather permits.  Be looking for the permission forms.  The cost of the trip will be $8.00.


Thanks for the many snacks and materials so many of you sent.  We really appreciate the help.  Parents, please remember to sign the planner and look in the folder every night.  Talk to your child about what they did each day.  Also, send a note for days absent.  Please send your child if they are not sick.  It is so very important to be at school each day.

Mr. Moore’s Class

This school year is moving right along. Everyone is getting into the routine of our normal day. This month we will focus on letters, s, p, t, and i. We have learned 4 sight words so far. We will learn 5 more this month, “like, a, see, go, it”. So be sure to continue to practice with them and have them read the words to you. In math we will be focusing on identifying and counting sets to 1-10. We have been talking about the 4 seasons and will be focusing on Fall and Fall holidays.


On Oct. 21st we will be going to Kyker’s Farm. We will do their Corn Maze, hayride, and pick a pumpkin. 


Art News

Our Dot Day projects really were fun and turned out great! Many of them still decorate our hallways. We are now finishing up our Hispanic projects in Grades 2 and 4. Second Grade selected and drew a picture of a hand carved animal from the Oaxaca region of Mexico. Our Fourth Grade students learned about some very creative buses used in several Central American countries (Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, etc.) called “Chicken Buses”. They have drawn their OWN version of a “chicken bus” and these are VERY creative as well!! Some of our students from those countries have even ridden on some of the real Chicken Buses themselves! Third Grade did a fantastic job on their Dot Day creations and have also been working on their Fall Self Portraits—learning the proper proportions and placement for facial features. First Graders have been learning about the Primary Colors—Red, Blue, and Yellow. They also learned how to mix their own Secondary Colors (Orange, Purple, and Green) by using only the Primary Colors! Now they know how to mix Primary Colors to create other colors!! Kindergarten is learning about shapes and patterns. They are incorporating their letter of the day/week into these shape patterns, too! They are doing a great job! I’m proud of all of our Pigeon Forge Primary Artists!

Music News

This month in music kindergarten and first grade will be exploring "The Carnival of the Animals" by Camille Saint-Saëns. Second and fourth grades will kick off "Spooky Music Month" with two familiar pieces, "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" and "In the Hall of the Mountain King." Third grade program is October 22nd. The program explains the life cycle of an oak tree in a fun and musical way.


Guidance News


This six weeks we will be discussing and implementing trustworthiness. Last six weeks we spoke about responsibility in guidance and in our classrooms. When we show responsibility we begin to build trust with our teachers, friends, and parents.  The littlest decisions can show that we can be trusted. When we are trusted we get to run errands for the teacher, help extra in the classroom, or be student of the month. These great decisions help teachers out tremendously in the classroom.

 What is Trustworthiness?

-means to be honest

-means to keep promises

-means others can depend on you and trust you in all situations


Trustworthy is a character counts value that helps make up the Character Counts pledge. At Pigeon Forge Primary, we say this pledge every morning at announcements.  Here at school we implement six ethical values along with regular curriculum that everyone can implement at home or at school. Every six weeks we will be practicing a different character counts value.  I encourage parents, grandparents, and students to practice the value of responsibility at home too.  

October 19-23th is Character Counts Week. We are asking that our students wear colors that show their Character Counts each day next week. 

Monday is green...responsibility
Tuesday is orange...citizenship 
Wednesday is yellow... respect
Thursday is purple....citizenship
Friday is red.....caring

October 26- 30th is Spirt Week.  Students may want to dress for each day:

Monday....Blue day to "stomp out 
bullying " and for trustworthiness 
Tuesday.....Camo day
Wednesday....Nerd day 
Thursday.....Favorite sports team
Friday....Favorite book character


Library News

In the library, we have begun studying parts of a book and how books are made in Kindergarten, First and Second Grades. In third and fourth grades, we are reviewing different types of reference books, including dictionaries, encyclopedias, atlases and many others. We would like to remind parents and community members that you are welcome to apply for library cards to check out books through the school library. We also have a large number of books that we are discarding because of their age and/or lack of use. They are available for 50 cents per book so please feel free to stop by the library to purchase some used books.