School Supply List

Click here for a printable version of the 2015-2016 School Supply List:

supply list page 1


supply list page 2

Registration, Online Verification, and Summer Playdates

Registration is at Centennial August 4, 5 and 6 12pm-6pm.

If your child is new to Centennial, remember to bring a birth certificate, immunization records, proof of address, and contact information. Please allow at least 30 minutes to fill out forms. You can find out your child’s teacher, sign up for the lunch programs, before/after school programs, the Centennial Volunteer Program, and the Parent Portal, meet with PTA members and pick up your child’s School Supply Lists.


Online Student Verification for fall 2015 registration will be available July 13th!

What does that mean?

You can complete your student’s annual enrollment verification online before registration, decreasing the amount of time you spend at the school, and in line! Please note, the online application verifies the information for all students in your household at once.

Follow the directions below to get started:

  • Log in to your Parent Portal account starting Monday, July 13th at
  • Click the “Online School Verification” tab on the left-hand side.
  • Follow the directions in the Portal to continue the online verification process.

Forms must be completed by August 16, 2015.


*Online Student Verification is a new option and is not required. As always, you are welcome to complete the process at your child’s school of enrollment as you have done in previous years.

For more information or questions about online student verification,

visit the School Choice website or call 720-423-3493.


Summer Playdates are a great way to meet other new and current families as we get to know each other whilst our kids play together on the Centennial playground.

  • Wednesday July 22 5:30pm
  • Sunday August 2nd 4pm
  • Saturday August 15th 10:00am


The 2015-16 school year begins Monday August 24th at 8am, until then…

Enjoy your Summer Vacation!

Summer Camp

Centennial and Skinner are running a Sports and STEM camp at Centennial this summer! There are still some spaces left to sign up before Monday. The sessions are from 8 am to 12:30 pm including a free breakfast and lunch. We start June 15th and go to July 2nd, then start again for the second session on July 13-30th. We would love to have your children ranging from 5 and entering Kindergarten to entering 8th grade.


Please call Anne at 720-666-1910, you can come to Centennial on Friday June 12th from 1-5. Please call Anne to get into the building.


summer camp

Summer Reading Suggestion List

Centennial Reading List

Below you will find a reading list for the grade level that your child is entering in August. This is not a summer reading list: it is a list of authors and genres that we highly encouraged your child (or you and your child) to read throughout the year.

ECE reading list

K reading list

1st grade (coming soon)

2nd grade reading list

3rd grade reading list

4th grade reading list

5th grade reading list


Denver Public Library has an amazing summer Reading Program where your children can sign up and earn prizes for reading. Click here for details.


Activities You and Your Child can Do Together After Reading a Story

  • After the story is over, have your child draw a picture of his/her favorite scene. Discuss why he/she chose this picture. You may also want to reread that portion of the story and choose a sentence or two to write at the bottom of the illustration.
  • Have your child try to determine what a character is thinking at major points in the story. Ask him/her to write these thoughts down in thought balloons you’ve drawn out, or have your child dictate to you as you write.
  • Stop in the middle of a new story and ask your child to predict what will happen next. Do this as often as you wish, especially if it interests your child. Discuss the prediction(s) at the end of the story.
  • Read a story through once. Then, reread the story and make a list of each problem the main character encountered. Discuss (and, if you wish, record) how each problem was resolved.
  • Have your student keep a journal where he/she writes opinions, questions, feelings, thoughts, ideas, etc., about each story that you read. Consider keeping a journal yourself as a way of supporting this activity. (Remember, the journal should not be a summary of the main events of the book). Every once in a while, read through their journals together and discuss some of the best books (or reread them!).


If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

Letter from Laura regarding today’s Lockdown.

May 20, 2015

Dear Centennial Elementary Parents:

We are committed to letting you know about incidents that affect Centennial Elementary and the community. Before dismissal today, DPS Safety and Security placed our school under a lockdown due to police activity in the neighborhood. Our school remained under lockdown for about four minutes and then was moved to lockout status while the nearby police activity continued.

I appreciate parents’ patience since the lockout caused delays in picking up their students, but please understand that these measures are put in place to ensure the safety of students and staff.

A school lockdown means students and staff return to their classrooms, all classroom, interior and exterior doors are locked, and all lights are turned off. Students and staff move out of sight and remain quiet in their classrooms until the lockdown is lifted.

A lockout means we lock exterior doors of our school and bring students and staff inside the building. Business inside the building continues as normal but we all must stay inside the building.

I would like to commend the swift and professional response of our school staff, students and security personnel during today’s lockdown. Please know that the safety of our students is a top priority at Centennial Elementary.

Please let me know if you have any questions about this incident.


Laura Munro

Construction/2015-16 Calendar Update

On Monday, May 11th we held a community meeting to talk with families about proposed changes to the 2015-16 and 2016-17 school calendars to accommodate extensive classroom renovations that will start the end of May 2016 and carry-on through out the length of the 2016 summer months. During the Community Meeting, families in attendance asked very thoughtful questions and we engaged in a positive dialogue. After the meeting Principal Laura Munro was able to take the feedback we received from participants and review it with District leadership to make further revisions that we feel address the questions and concerns raised by our community. We feel confident that the changes we’ve been able to make will be positively received by our community and will support the learning needs of our students. Most specifically, we have been able to address concerns raised by our families regarding the possibility of extending the length of the school day beyond 3:45. Below are highlights of the 2015-16 and 2016-17 school year calendars. Scroll down below to see architectural drawings of how beautiful the school will look after the renovations are complete by the start of the 2016 school year.

School Year 2015-2016



· August 24 2015- First Day of School for students

· Planning and Assessment Days- No Classes for Students

October 19
January 4
February 29
April 11

· October 20 Student- led conference day #1 (No classes for students)

· February 29 Student-led conference day #2 ( No classes for students)

· May 26 2016- last day of school for students- 1/2 day

School Day is 8:00-3:45

The 2015-16 school year will end 5 days early to accommodate the extensive renovations taking place in the building, but because we added 45 minutes to the school day, and students are in school from 8:00-3:45, we are still 100+ hours over the total number of instructional hours required.


School Year 2016-17


September 8 2016 is first day of school for students

There will be three Planning/Assessment days through out the school year when students will not have classes

There will be two Student-led conference days, one fall, one spring

· June 9 2017 is the last day of school for students- ˝ day

School day is 8:00-3:45

Construction Overview

construction work


classroom design



Click below to review the entire May Meeting presentation

May 11 Community Meeting


DPS Redesigning ‘70s-Era 'Open Plan' Classrooms – 2012 DPS Bond Update from Denver Public Schools on Vimeo.

2015/16 Fit Fun Registration starts May 7th at 4pm

Both ONLINE and Paper registration options available beginning May 7th .

Starting times: current Kaleidoscope families- 4pm and new families-6pm


Step 1 – Have an active DPS Parent Portal account and gather the following information: • Emergency contacts • Doctor, dentist and hospital information

Step 2- Login to your Parent Portal account at

Step 3 – Once in the Portal, you will see the “Kaleidoscope Corner” button on the left menu. Click the button and follow the instructions.

Step 4 – You will be taken into another screen. Click on your “inbox” and select Kaleidoscope Corner 2015-2016 Registration. Complete the application.

Step 5 – From your email, submit your student’s current immunizations and health forms to Include the site your child will be attending on the forms.

Click here to see the Fall 2015-2016 Registration Flyer.

Second Graders Inspire A Playground for All

Today, the playground at Centennial – A School for Expeditionary Learning in Denver is accessible to all children because of second graders who applied their learning through a project on simple machines.

Teachers Fran Taffer and Ali Bernstein last year led their two classrooms on a real world learning adventure with a purpose. The Simple Machines expedition features case studies in which students learn about force and motion via a deep dive into the mechanics of the wheel. They become experts in their own simple machines (ramps, pulleys, wedges, etc.) and identify an opportunity in which a simple machine can play a role in improving their community.

“When we started it, we had no idea what we were going to do. I heard an NPR story about how students with disabilities did not have access to playgrounds. It got me thinking that we could solve that problem at Centennial,” Fran said. The woodchip surface of Centennial’s playground made it difficult for students in wheelchairs to play on it. Writing letters to Denver Public Schools to ask for a smooth, safe playground surface that students in wheelchairs could access became the goal.

Fran and Ali started by having the students do an experiment about friction and how wheels don’t work on a woodchip surface. They then learned about playgrounds, disabilities, and making change in their community. Experts, including a designer of universally accessible playgrounds, were brought in to share their knowledge with the students. Their visits were coupled with close reading and writing work on the topics.

“The writing process became something that all the students could understand and get behind. We focused on enabling students to understand why being able to play is important to develop social skills. The combination of taking enough time to build background knowledge before writing was important. When they started writing, it never felt forced,” Fran said.

Fran wrote the exemplar letter that served as the model for the students and developed the criteria for success. Student-led assessment and learning targets kept the students on track so they understood the purpose of their work. Additional learning opportunities occurred when fourth and fifth graders mentored the second graders and critiqued their work.

The students read and presented the letters to Denver Public Schools officials who warmly received them. The approval process and construction took a year and the new playground was unveiled last month.

Though the students had hoped the playground would be completed last year, they learned a valuable lesson. “I was worried that it might not happen, but now that it happened, I feel – like accomplished – and proud,” said Maya Cordova who is now in third grade. A fellow student Jason Waters added: “What I learned is that I can make a change no matter how old I am.”

See the KUSA-TV news story here.

Open Classroom Construction Update:

As part of the 2012 Bond, Centennial will have our open classroom’s renovated. However the scope/volume of the work is much greater than originally anticipated because of our outdated HVAC system.
We are currently awaiting the Design Team’s cost evaluation of the following two proposals:
Option 1:
Open Plan Remodel Summer 2016
Mechanical Upgrades Summer 2017 pending acceptance of 2016 Bond
Option 2:
Open Plan Remodel and Mechanical Upgrades Summer 2017 with early release and delayed start calendar adjustment.
Regardless of the decision of which option the Gym Floor abatement and replacement will take place Summer 2015.
Check out this video produced by DPS to better understand the Open Classroom renovation project.


DPS Redesigning ‘70s-Era 'Open Plan' Classrooms – 2012 DPS Bond Update from Denver Public Schools on Vimeo.

Open Letter to Future Crew from a Current Parent

“If you wonder often, the gift of knowledge will come.”

Read aloud by a first grader, this was the opening line to welcome students, staff, and families to the first Centennial Community Circle this October. To me, it epitomizes what underlies the education my children are receiving at Centennial: A School for Expeditionary Learning.


Three years ago, our family followed the support and criticism in response to the massive changes going on at the school. And two years ago, we took a leap of faith and choiced our son into kindergarten at Centennial during their first year as a new Expeditionary Learning school. My son is now a first grader and I have a daughter in kindergarten.

Yes, Centennial is a school in transition which means it still has its ups and down (hey, what school doesn’t?), but if you peek behind their doors, you might be surprised at all of the changes going on inside. This year, Centennial kicked-off an Extended Learning Time plan that provides an additional 300 hours of student engagement time throughout the school year. Forty-five minutes was added to the each school day, the number of days kids are out of school has decreased, and the biggest impact has been that every Wednesday (“Enrichment Wednesdays”), the entire school partners with over 20 outside providers to participate in enrichment activities such as dance, art, soccer, cooking, technology and science, martial arts, and yoga. This has allowed the teaching staff more collaborative planning time.

enrichment building

Honestly, I was skeptical about the longer day. I was concerned that it would mean more
“butts in seats”, worksheets, etc. Plus, ending at 3:45 felt too late to me, but as I’ve seen and heard about what the kids are doing with this extra time, I couldn’t be happier. At a time when schools are cutting regular enrichments, Centennial is adding them! Centennial is creating a learning environment that supports exploring, engaging, wondering, not just sitting and listening (although that is expected too!). These enrichments come in addition to the regular PE, art, music and Spanish “specials” (hooray!).

Plus, through our 21st Century Grant, after school offers a world of free activities for the K-5 kids. Soccer, Daisy Scouts, Destination Imagination, science club, sewing club, book club, sound lab, homework help, to name a few.

Last, one of my favorite things about the school is how open the administration, teaching staff, and PTA are to parent involvement. I am in the school two days a week volunteering in my kids’ classrooms, plus I am active in the PTA. I describe the PTA as a “Yes!” PTA. Bring an idea in and the response is “Yes! Go for it!” There is no opportunity too big or too small to be involved.

Is Centennial the “perfect school”? No, but is there such a thing? To me, Centennial is progress, growth, opportunity, engagement, and constant wonder. And I believe that we will continue to grow and progress with each year.

-Jean Cimino

Upcoming tours:

January 9th, 2:30-3:30

This is a great opportunity to meet with our Principal, Laura Munro and other staff/parents. Each Open House will start with a 1/2 hour Q&A session, followed by a tour of the school.

If you are unable to attend one of these Open Houses, please call up Stacy (720) 424-8900 to schedule a tour.

You can also contact our PTA president directly, who is happy to address any questions you have.