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Current Newsletter



Welcome, new 4th grade in-person Blue Heron students! 

We are so excited to have your child joining our class this next week. I hope this is a smooth transition for your family. 

On Wednesday and Thursday, we will be taking the reading portion of the winter MAP assessment. Mrs. Stevenson let us know that your child has already taken this assessment, so please have your child bring a couple great chapter books to enjoy while the rest of the class takes their assessment. Thanks much!

I will attach the welcome letter below that I sent to families in August so you can get to know our 4th grade team, 4th grade norms, and see the class supplies that your child will need to bring on Tuesday (there are some directions for prepping them ahead of time too):

Introducing the In-Person 4th Grade Team

  1. Mrs. Vallory Darting- Hi, 4th grade families! My name is Mrs. Darting. I have a passion for teaching and have had the privilege of working with primary, intermediate, and middle school students since 2003. Blue Heron has been my home since 2004, and this will be my third-year teaching 4th grade! When I am not teaching, you will find me cooking, coding with my first-grade son, hiking, building Lego sets, or exploring with my husband and son near our home here in Littleton, CO. I grew up in Nebraska and love the Huskers, but I moved to Colorado as soon as I could (for undergraduate college) and have loved being a Coloradoan ever since. I have an undergrad degree from Colorado Christian University in Early Childhood Ed and a master's degree in Ed Technology from Lesley University. I am also Jeffco endorsed in English as a Second Language (ESL). It is my goal to help every student achieve their potential and work with you to build student confidence and a love for learning. This is going to be a great year! I am so happy you will be part of our 4th grade Blue Heron family! 

  2. Mrs. Katie Nardi - Happy Thursday everyone! My name is Katie Nardi. I am excited to be teaching fourth grade again this year! I have been teaching in Jeffco since 2000. I opened Blue Heron as a fourth-grade teacher 19 years ago! Since then, I have gone between teaching third and fourth grade. Prior to opening Blue Heron, I taught sixth grade at Westridge Elementary! In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my husband, two daughters, and two golden retriever dogs. As a family we enjoy going on walks, attending church, sitting around our firepit, and eating meals together on our deck. I have lived in Colorado since second grade. I attended Jeffco schools for most of my school career. I attended Peiffer, Stony Creek, and Westridge Elementary. I also went to Deer Creek Middle School, and Chatfield Senior High School. I earned my Bachelor of Science Degree from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana, and my master's degree in Ed Technology from Lesley University. I am also endorsed in English as a Second Language (ESL). I look forward to building strong and lasting relationships with my students and their families this year. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments.   

Important Details for the Start of School

  • Logging into Google Classroom- School starts virtually this Monday, August 24th! Below are some details for getting logged into Google Classroom to access our daily Google Slide lesson plans and any other daily assignments for remote learning-

    • Go to

    • Click the “+” sign at the top right, click “join a class,” and enter your teacher’s Google Classroom codes in emails sent today.

  • Labeling Materials- Current COVID rules do not allow for personal supplies to be shared, so unless you ordered an Edukit, please have all personal school supplies labeled with a Sharpie permanent marker with the student’s first name and last initial or at least their initials (including all pencils) before the first day of in-person learning August 31st. Please write your student’s name on the inside cover of notebooks and folders. If you ordered an Edukit, we will do this on the 31st but send in a Sharpie please.

    • Items that should NOT be labeled with names include the following- tissue boxes, wipes, large hand sanitizer bottles, baggies, index cards, notebook paper, and sheet protectors. Please bring these for the classroom on Aug. 31st.

  • What to Bring Each Day- 

    • Backpacks (along with the “Items to Send In-Person Everyday” listed farther down)

    • All classroom-based supplies listed above

    • On August 31st, we will finish labeling folders, notebooks, and dividers.

    • Please have names clearly labeled on all personal supplies before August 31st. 

  • Face Masks and Personal Space- Students will need to remain in their seats and will need to keep masks on while inside the building at ALL times

  • COVID Safety- We will try to take frequent outdoor mask breaks about once an hour, when possible. Students will only be allowed to play and take breaks with their own classroom cohort. Only Blue Heron staff and students are allowed inside the building. All family and friends on school grounds (outdoors) are expected to wear a mask at all times. Thanks for helping keep our school community safe and healthy!

  • Cleanliness of Workspace- Lunches will be eaten indoors or outdoors (when possible). Please wear sunscreen! Teachers will be disinfecting student desks during recess time, so they are clean and ready for our afternoon. Students will eat their snack in the classroom and will be expected to pick up all food and wrappers and keep their personal spaces always clean. 

  • Food & Allergies- Our school is allergy aware, but not allergy free. Kids will be eating food in classrooms this year (so nuts and other common allergy-related foods could be present). We will sanitize regularly. 

  • Chromebooks- Due to COVID restrictions, assignments will be technology-based and completed using Chromebooks. There will not be extra chargers or Chromebooks (or places to charge Chromebooks), so please be sure to bring charged Chromebooks to school every day. Students will bring them home to charge and to have in the event of immediate quarantine. Students who forget Chromebooks, or whose Chromebooks run out of charge, will need to take notes during the day and transfer their assignments to the online apps as homework that evening.

  • Quarantine Expectations- Students who show signs of COVID will be taken to the medical safe room and may be asked to quarantine at home for a certain length of time. They will still be expected to participate in all class activities and assignments remotely. 

  • Reading Log- There will be no official reading log at this time, but we do highly recommend students continue reading 20-30 minutes daily (by themselves, using an audio book, alongside a family member, a pet, or an online friend). 

Items to Send In-Person Everyday

  • Backpack

    • Charged Chromebook (will bring home nightly to charge)

    • 1 pencil bag or box, with...

      • Colored pencils

      • Crayola fine tip markers

      • Black Flair! (Papermate) felt tip pens

      • 1 Expo dry erase fine point black marker

      • 1 yellow highlighter

      • Large eraser

      • 4 pencils, sharpened

      • Scissors

      • 1 glue stick

      • Headphones or earbuds

    • 1 one-inch binder, with...

      • 7 of the tabs from the 2 packages of dividers

      • Planner (they will get on Aug. 31)

    • 2 chapter books from home (classroom library is closed due to COVID)

    • Snack and water bottle (water fountains are closed)

    • Sunscreen, mini hand sanitizer, and an extra mask

    • Layers of clothing (for when school is cold or it is hot outside)

  • Please keep all other personal school supply items at home, until otherwise directed. 

  • All personal school supply items will be kept in student backpacks at their seat in the classroom all day. Please encourage your child to bring only these essential items listed above, and nothing more, to ensure our room stays clear of clutter, as we currently have 24 students enrolled in-person per room and less than two feet spacing between desks. 

  • It is more important than ever for students to accept personal responsibility for themselves and their belongings. They need to come prepared for remote or in-person class with all materials ready each day. It is expected that they only use their own supplies (touch only their own materials) and always respectfully social-distance from others, even when outside. 

Jeffco Tech Support

  • If you run into any technical difficulties, first try the Jeffco tech tips listed here. If those do not solve the issue, please call Jeffco Tech Support (available Monday - Friday, 7 AM - 4 PM) at 303-982-3438.

In closing, we would love to begin to get to know you and your 4th grade student better! We have created a parent form and student learning form to get to know your child better as a learner. If you and your student could fill these out, we would appreciate it!


Mrs. Darting's Class

Parent Survey

Darting Parents

Student Learning Survey

Darting Students

It is going to be a wonderful year, whether in-person or online!

Your Blue Heron in-person 4th grade team, 

Mrs. Vallory Darting, M.Ed.

Mrs. Katie Nardi, M. Ed.

4th Grade Teachers