Ms. Gruich
F I R S T   G R A D E
T H E    T E A C H E R

Ms. Jan Gruich

This is my third year to teach at St. Al’s and I look forward to helping my students learn many things: to love God, love learning, love coming to school every day, and ultimately be prepared for second grade at the end of the year! One of my favorite things about working at St. Alphonsus School is getting to spend each day praying with the class and sharing my love of reading with them. Seeing their excitement grow as they learn new words and put it all together is a highlight of my teaching experience. My wonderful husband of 29 years and I have three daughters, two of which also chose to be educators! I love spending time with my family, my students, being a part of the St. Al’s family, and God.
For weekly reminders and important dates.

Our Classroom Team

Ms. Jan Gruich
Ms. Bev Forehand

Our “Special(s)” Team

Ms. Gena Gatschet
PE Teacher
Ms. Kathy Mangin
Music Teacher
Ms. Mary Rogers
Ms. Lauren Ross
Spanish Teacher
C L A S S R O O M   A C T I V I T I E S

Lights! Camera! VERBS!

Our Elementary students are full of movement and Ms. Gruich does an amazing job of translating those “things you do with your body” into teaching moments about verbs. Students move through active listening about the topic to individual examples to reinforce it. Group discussion that includes active wiggles and hand raising is encouraged. Once she feels the group has a firm handle on the topic, the real work(books) begin. Our avid readers tackle passages and identify the action, the noun – both common and proper.
Student learning does not end at the classroom door. During Library time, Ms. Mary extends the lesson to include organizing nouns and verbs by type and alphabetically. It is a slight change of pace that keeps the activity fresh but keeps the classroom lesson going. The library books they take home each week often include conversations with mom and dad about the “person, place, or thing” a sentence may be about or “describing words” they can identify. It’s a great team of teachers, students, and parents we have at St. Al’s!

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Mass 09.13.19 – How Do We See Others?

How do we see others? Father Mike spent time this morning talking to our students about perceptions of ourselves, others, and God. He issued a challenge at the end of his talk that we encourage EVERYONE to try today.
Here are some talking points to help make today’s mass meaningful in your home: – Do we see people and the good they do? – Do we see the mistakes they make? – God sees us through loving eyes… ALWAYS! – Loving eyes give grace for good days and bad days. – Loving eyes forgive when we have really bad days. – Loving eyes allow for redemption and growth.
CHALLENGE: Can you say something nice to a friend, a family member, teacher, … anyone… and see them as God see them.
#massmessage #lovingeyes #calledtobeaSAINT

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Mass 08.30.19 – Be Prepared

Father Mike spent his mass message today talking about preparation. (Feel free to read today’s Gospel lesson, Matthew 25: 1-13, for his biblical jumping off point.)
Here are a few things he talked about to help make mass meaningful in your home:
– It is important for us to be prepared.
– We prepare for lots of things in our life; tests, hurricanes, basketball games, choir performances, and more.
– We can prepare by doing things with our bodies or our minds.
– We spend our entire life preparing for the most important thing – our life with God.
– We can prepare every day by living a godly life. We can pray, we can love each other, we can act as the Bible tells us…
– What are other ways we can prepare for our life with God?
#massmessage #beprepared #calledtobeaSAINT

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Mass 08.23.19- Let the Children Come to Me

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me.” Every week our littlest children in PreK-3 through our more mature sixth graders fill the pews to worship; coming to experience the kingdom of God through song, prayer, readings, and messages from the clergy. Sometimes their little voices aren’t so little. Their wiggles tend to wander down the pew. They even steal focus from Father every once in awhile. (These actions aren’t limited to St. Alphonsus masses, they can happen inany church, at any service, at any moment.)

But we choose to remember that our students are learning. They are learning about our faith. They are learning how to praise Him through song. They are learning how to ask for help in hard times through prayer. They are learning how to seek forgiveness when they have made a mistake through confession. They are learning how to welcome others to the Body of Christ through sharing the peace. They are learning to see the least of us sitting among us. They are learning from the Bible and realizing that it is more than just a story, it is life. It gives us life.Our children are the future of our faith. Our children aren’t noisy, they are learning to make a joyful noise. Our children aren’t squirmy, they are actively, and age appropriately, participating in mass. Our children are worshipping.St. Alphonsus Catholic School mass — with its joyful noise and active participation — could not happen without EVERY ONE of its precious students. Each one is vital to the school community, the family of faith, and the kingdom of God.Thank you parents for giving your children a foundation in faith. Thank you for allowing us to worship with them at school. Thank you for the amazing work you do at home teaching them about God’s love and the importance of growing with God. It begins at home and we applaud your hard work. #calledtobeaSAINT #littlechildreninbigchurch #letthechildrencometome

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Mass 08.15.19 – The First Disciple

The students of St. Alphonsus Catholic School have a foundation in faith. On a daily basis they receive scripture, engage in prayer, and have the opportunity to experience their faith with their friends and teachers on a very real level. Today was the first Mass of the year where students sat with their class and experienced scripture, communion, prayer, and a special message from Father Mike. (Today’s mass was a special Holy Day of Obligation, the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.)
Here are a few things Father Mike talked about to help make today’s Mass meaningful in your home too:
– Mary was the first intentional disciple.
– She was so excited to be Jesus’ mother that she told every one of God’s work.
– We can be excited about the amazing things God does in our life, too.
– She shared her son, Jesus, with us. Jesus ultimately shared His body with us when he died.
– It is good to share with others. What good things about God can we share with others?

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