Every teacher I know says that the weeks between Thanksgiving and winter break are tough--the kids know the big holiday is coming and they all get excited and act out a bit more. I believe Lilacgirl's daughter is quite young, around kindergarten or first grade.
I'm wondering if this teacher is fairly new and wasn't expecting this.
I can understand sending a note home when the entire class is acting up. But this note focuses on the consequences of the behavior--the sticks and the gumballs--and doesn't give a clue as to what behaviors led to these consequences.
For the parents to have a meaningful talk with their kids, they need to know what happened. Telling a young child, "You need to be more respectful in class," isn't going to do much. Telling a child, "You need to stay in your seat in class," "You should not yell in class," "You should not laugh at someone who is breaking the class rules," would be far more effective.
So sending an email to the parents seems like a good idea, but this note falls short in that it does not give the parents enough information to do what the teacher asks them to do.
And I have to wonder, if the teacher is having this much trouble with the class now, what will things be like in two weeks, when the kids will be *really* wound up?