Maggie Kiley


A Day in the Big Woods

On Friday our school spent the day in the Big Woods State Park for our 26th Discovery Day.  This traditional day of outdoor learning is one of the highlights of the entire year.  Each year we have a theme, this year was migration, and use it as the springboard for each of the 4 activities the students are involved in during the day.  It is also a day in which we group children in K-5 "families" so that they learn together according to their intellectual development level.  It was a bit of a chilly start, but by the afternoon the sun was out in the park, and the beginning colors of autumn were all around us.  It's a wonderful sight to see 149 students in the woods for the entire day!

Another tradition that is rolled into this day, is our annual walk to the park.  On Discovery Day grades 1-5 do the walk, but then on the last day of school the kinders join us, and walk the entire way.  This 2 mile walk, twice a year, is one of the ways that we mark our time together.  That last day walk completes a circle of time that we have spent together and is a symbol of the journey we have taken together as a school community.  At a time where more and more students spend time indoors looking at screens, we hold on tightly to traditions that involve physical activity in the outdoors for our students.  The physical activity doesn't end with the walk to the park, at the park 3 of the rotations also involve movement.  One rotation is to walk to the falls and back, another was the obstacle course and the third physical station was the Migration Headache game.  Matthew Keseley and Paula Shroyer led the walk to the falls 4 times on Friday as well as walking to the park with students.  They had gotten in just under 20,000 steps by the end of the day!  I am always surprised by how energetic our students are the entire day, even with all the movement.  Teachers assume that students get a good nights sleep after Discovery Day!

This year, we had around 45 parents/grandparents/guardians come and volunteer with Discovery Day.  It was a wonderful outpouring of support for this tradition.  It is a day that couldn't happen without many volunteers, and it was a great success.  Thank you to all of the volunteers.  
We will have many more exciting opportunities to learn this year

18th Annual Community Celebration

On April 30th, the school community will host the 18th annual ‘Community Celebration of Place: Elders’ Wisdom, Children’s Song,’ beginning at 6:45 p.m. Each year students interview an honored elder community guest and weave stories together into an original song, with lyrics written by students, that is shared at the program. This year community celebration will pay tribute to honoree 91 year old, Pete Keller, a lifelong resident of the area. The celebration also includes 38 elder’s medley’s from previous years, all sung by kindergarten – 5th grade students.  The program also entertains the crowd with a community band to start the evening program, with alumni, community members and 5th grade students in the school’s gymnasium. The Community Celebration began at the school in 1998, with a residency at the school, with Larry Long, troubadour, and it has been taking place every year since. 

NO SCHOOL, Monday, March 23

School will be closed due to poor road conditions. Nerstrand Elementary follows the Faribault District closings. 

Return of the restless Monarchs

The days are getting longer, the sun is getting warmer every day and 800 miles south of the Mexican Border millions of monarch butterflies are getting restless. Each warm day now when the sun is at its warmest thousands of monarch butterflies leave their roost, (gathering spot for night time), and find some water to drink as they get ready for the great migration northward. They will start their journey back towards Minnesota as soon as there are plants of milkweed to lay their eggs on and flowers in bloom which will have nectar for food.
To help the monarchs out this year the Savanna Students will be starting seeds of butterfly milkweed which will be grown and taken out to Caron Park where they will be planted on the prairie this spring
​ in May​.


Open Enrollment for Fall 2015

Nerstrand Elementary is accepting applications through March 6, for the annual charter school enrollment lottery.

Please call the school office with any questions, or to schedule a tour. Simply click on the 'Apply Now' button on the homepage to complete an enrollment application.

Thank you for your interest in Nerstrand School!

Annual School PTO Carnival

Annual Nerstrand Elementary School P.T.O. Carnival
Friday, January 30th, 2015 from  6:00  - 8:00 p.m. at the School
Bingo - Carnival Games - Silent Auction - Food - Fun for All!
Come and see our school in a relaxed atmosphere!
Now through March 6th accepting applications for Fall 2015 enrollment!
visit for more information

Harvest Parade

Students and staff are looking forward to the annual Harvest Parade Celebration, hosted by local businesses in Nerstrand on Friday, October 31 at 1pm.

Curriculum Night

A parent-only evening on Monday, October 6th, 6 - 7pm (PTO meeting to follow at 7pm). We encourage parents to participate in this crucial introduction to your child's year, held in the gym, classrooms, and music room. Learn more about school wide curriculum and programs, and meet with teachers.