Weekly Update: 7/29/2013

What We Teach, How We Teach, Authentic Literacy

Let the fun begin!

Here you will find my first weekly update of the 2013-2014 school year.  Each post will be emailed to you automatically if you have signed up to follow this post.  I will ask a question at the end of each post and expect that you will reply via “post a comment”.  I know that many of you are not seeing the blog with all of it’s graphics and “pretty colors”.  I have alerted Ken Quisenberry and he believes that he needs to adjust the district filters so hopefully this will be resolved soon.  Thank you for your patience.

First Day Packets:

Eunice has sent an email to explain what you need to do with the first day packets- here’s a recap:

1) Please pick them up in the lounge on Monday morning and make sure to distribute them before the school day ends

2) If a new student arrives next week to register, the office will provide that student with a first day packet.

3) The first day packets have students’ names on them.  If you have a child who is absent, please keep the packet.  If after 3 days of the student not showing up to your class, the student will be considered a “no show” and will be dropped from your attendance.  Please bring the packet to the office so we can re-label and reuse.

4) Some of the items in the first day packet require parent/guardians to complete and return.  Please be aware of which forms need to returned and create a check off list so you know who still needs to return specific items.

 Attendance on the first 3 days:

Please take attendance through your computer like always but please know that we will be visiting your classroom in the morning to double check on attendance so we can closely and quickly monitor enrollment numbers.

PLC and Professional Development:

Thank you so much for your focus, involvement, and thougtful feedback during our PD prep day this past Wednesday and in your grade level PLC meetings this week.  We know that this will be a busy year full of new learning that will at times challenge what we have been doing for the past several years.  Please remember that we are ALL going into this journey together and it will take time and patience.   In the PD session, there were several good questions posted on the “parking lot” page.  I will try my best to answer many of those here and now.  For other questions that require more dialogue, we will address these in next week’s staff meeting on Wednesday, July 31st.

1) Are we continuing with writing PD with SDAWP?

Yes, we will have 4 days of PD this year again with SDAWP.  The first day will be full day with hopes of learning how to plan a full writing unit.  We will still break into k-2 (including Kinder from WV) and 3-6 for these sessions.  I have asked that our full day be schedule sooner than later, shooting for the third or fourth week of school.  I am waiting to hear back on confirmed dates.

2) What is update with our Science room/container? 

It is officially off-limits until our Maintanence Dept. can clean it and address the rodent issues.

3) Are we doing running program this year?

Yes, we will continue with us and I look forward to any suggestions on how to “hype” this throughout the year.  Anyone willing to be in charge of “running club”? Thank you Dana for being in charge of distributing feet.

4) If a student goes home early due to illness/injury, will that also count against the attendance award at the end of the year?

Yes.  If we allow too many “exceptions” it will be very difficult to monitor.

5) Are we supposed to stack chairs at the end of the day? The custodians say “no”.

I have asked the custodians who earlier told me it didn’t matter and they said “No need to stack chairs at the end of the day but it would be very helpful to have students pick up larger pieces of trash off of the floor before they leave.”

6) Should we call the office every time we leave to go to P.E., Library, Computer Lab, etc.?

To avoid excessive phone calls to the office, an email to office staff would also work.  Please make sure to send it to Eunice and Martha in case one of them is at lunch or out of the office.

7) Can we also recognize the SBUSD foundation when we go on field trips or events that were sponsored by their grants?  Just like I encouraged that we give a “shout out” to PTO, it seems right that we do the same for the Foundation since they support our students in so many ways as well.

PBS:

I will be sending an email to those staff members who have shown interest in being part of our PBS “team”.  For all teachers, please remember to teach the first 15 PBS lessons, one lesson each day for the first 15 days of school.  My hope is that by then, we will have a plan for what PBS will look like for the rest of the year.

Planning time:

I do not anticipate having our impact teachers for PLC begin until the fourth of fifth week of school.  I know it is critical that you have more planning time around your Units of Study.  For this reason, I have set aside money in the budget for grade level planning.  We do not have a lot of “high impact” days for substitutes in the month of August so I highly encourage your grade level to plan for at least one or two half days releases for planning purposes sooner than later.  Please chat with your grade level team, email me and Eunice to check and make sure the date/s you choose are available and….happy Units of Study planning…..

Staff Meeting:

We will have a staff meeting on Wednesday at 1:40 in Rm. 21.  At this meeting, we will revisit our school focus and specifically determine our areas of interests within What We Teach, How We Teach, and Authentic Literacy.  We will also revisit what it means to have a healthy school culture.  Additionally, we will look at some of the great solutions that your teams created for some challenges that we have faced in the past.  Finally, we will determine library times since this year everyone will have a specific library time as Teresa’s role is changing.

Septic Tank Issue:

Investigation of our campus has determined that there are other septic tanks that need to be investigated.  They may be perfectly safe but until this is determined, the district will be fencing off those areas.  We will send out a letter to parents on Monday regarding this issue.  Please do not say anything to parents or students to alarm them as this is not determined to be unsafe.  The district is fencing this off as a precautionary measure.

Quote of the Week:

“Tell me and I’ll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I’ll understand forever.”

-Chinese Proverb

Question of the week: (please reply in “comment” box)

What is the city of your birth?

Have a great first week!!

Welcome Back!

Welcome to the Emory Eagle Blog! This is where you will find everything related to Emory.  I will be posting my weekly update here plus much more.  This blog site will be your only way to access the Weekly Update, Weekly Bulletin, and other important information related to Emory.  I recommend that you subscribe to the blog so you can begin receiving each post via email. You can do this by looking to the links on the left, find “follow blog via email” and simply click on the “follow” button.   My hope is to have one place where you can find everything, thus avoiding the need to search through old emails or sift through papers on your desk in order to find important info.  This is my first professional goal of this school year, I hope we all find it helpful!