Weekly Update: 12/15/2014

5 more days! Here are the updates for this busy week:


Our PBS lesson is very appropriate in that it addresses Gift Shop expectations.  Please make sure to review this Monday morning after flag salute.

Egyptian Fair:

Our sixth graders will take part in their Egyptian Fair shortly after flag salute.  Please sign up and/or make sure to attend during the time that you signed up to visit.

Asst. Supt. Visit:

Cindy Schaub will visit on Monday from 10-12.  We may be visiting classrooms after discussing options for spending CC money that must be spent by end of January.

Imagine Learning:

Please review Adriana’s email regarding IL.  We will not have IL this week or the week we return from break.


We will have PLCs this week.  Please continue to unpack your focus standards with an intent to Chapter thus determining which lessons should be taught first, then next, etc and writing sequential objectives.  Some grade level teams are also committing part of their PLC to readind chapters/parts of some of our resource books that are located in Rm. 28 such as the Van der Walle books and Number Talks.  If you are looking to build your content knowledge around your Math CC standards, let me remind you that the Math Frameworks for your grade level is HIGHLY informative and does  a great job of breaking down the Mathematical Practices as well as the individual standards with great examples too!  The frameworks can be found on the Math Units of Study link.  When you click on your specific grade level, the first line of the page takes you to the frameworks link.

If you have read the emails from Michelle Syverson, you should also know that many of the Unit 3 and Unit 4 Math assessments are already uploaded for you to preview.  This may be another agenda item for your PLC time.

Book orders:

Based on your requests on last week’s Staff Mtg. sign in list, we have ordered Math Facts books (Mastering the Basic Math Facts in Addition and Subraction OR Multiplication and Division: Strategies, Activities & Interventions to Move Students Beyond Memorization).  These should be arriving mid-week.  Additionally, here is a link for ordering dice if you are interested in ordering with some of your CC money.

Wednesday Staff Meeting:

We will only meet for 5 minutes in Rm. 21 to ensure that everyone takes a quick survey that will help our PBS team design some future PD for January.  As soon as you arrive to Rm. 21, you will be given directions as to how to access the survey and you can begin right away and leave when you are finished.

Reading and Popcorn:

I will be busy rewarding monthly attendance classroom winners again this week.  So far I have been able to honor the sign up but please be patient should I be a few minutes late or if I need to reschedule.  If this should happen, I will make sure to call right away or ahead of time to inform you if I’m running late or need to reschedule.

Question of the Week:

What are your plans for your upcoming time off?

Quote of the Week:

“Cherish your human connections- your relationships with family and friends.” -Barbara Bush



Weekly Update: 12/8/2014

Hi everyone- Here are the updates for this week.

Instructional Rounds:

We will have Instructional Rounds again on Monday from 8a.m.-12noon.  Our 3rd grade team will observe 4th grade team and Amy Illingworth will be joining us.  Thank you to both 3rd and 4th adn 5th and 6th grade that have taken part in this so far this year.


Please continue to use PLCs to unpack your focus standards for your current or upcoming Unit of Study.  If you are much of your PLC spending time around CC Math, as most teams are, take this time to discuss the recent PD conducted by our ILT team and how you might include some of the ideas that were shared.  (Number Talks, Fluency Practice using games, Rich word problems with slight adjustments for support and challenge students, etc.)  Remember, you can find the PowerPoint from our recent ILT meeting on our district CC ELA page under “ILT” link which I’ve hyperlinked here.  You can then find the box/link titled “ILT Round 2.pptx”.  You will find many resources there and you can find more info on Number Talks on your CC Math Units of Study page here.

Also remember that your PLC time is where your Grade Level Lead rep should be sharing out info from the most recent meeting which should happen in the PLC that immediately follows the Grade Level Lead mtg.

Staff Meeting:

We will have a staff meeting this week in Rm. 21 at 1:40p.m.  Please bring your laptop and journal.  I will be asking various committee members to briefly share out and we will discuss some other “Nuts n Bolts”.  We will NOT have a staff meeting/PD on Dec. 17th.

Release Days:

As we have now entered our second trimester, this means that each grade level has a full day or 2 half-day release days for your team to use for extra planning (Our site plan has 3 release days budgeted for each grade level).  If your team should choose half days instead of one full day, please make sure to avoid Friday p.m. half days as those are very hard to fill with guest teachers.

Attendance Awards:

I will be busy in the next two weeks with reading/popcorn visits for my winning October and November monthly attendance classes.  I believe that most everyone has signed up and I have placed these appointments in my calendar.  I appreciate that all of you know that should a discipline issue arise, this may delay my visit but I will cross my fingers for great Respectful, Responsible, and Safe behaviors in the last two weeks before break.

Resource of the Week:

This may not be new to many of you, and it can be found on our district site and the ILT links but HERE is Jo Boaler’s free website YouCubed- this site is SO user friendly! It has tabs for teachers, PARENTS, admin, and more! And plenty of videos too!

Question of the Week:

Based on our ILT members PD last Wednesday, what is something that you learned?,

or something that resonated with you?,

or something that made you reflect on your current practices?,

or something that you are excited to try out in your classroom?

or something that you are already trying and finding success with?

Quote of the Week:

Without mathematics, there’s nothing you can do.  Everything around you is mathematics.  Everything around you is numbers.”  -Shakuntala Devi



Weekly Update: 12/1/2014

Welcome to December everyone! I sure hope you had a great week off and found some time to rest, play, and spend time with family and friends!

Flag Salute and Monthly Attendance:

We will announce November winners for attendance on Monday so please bring your trophies.  I did not get to read to any of our October winners as my November was so busy so I am planning to post a sign up sheet in the lounge for classes to sign up.  Some slots will be longer for those classes who win for both Oct. and Nov. and shorter time slots for “single month” winners.


Chris will be sending out our PBS expectations powerpoint- Guest Teacher expectations.  Please make sure to use our school-wide PBS time for this each Monday morning.  If we don’t place importance on this, then our students won’t either.


We have 3 weeks until our next break.  While it’s expected to eagerly look forward to this next break, let’s please make the most of these next 3 weeks, instructionally speaking.  Please use your PLC time to continue to unpack standards.  While we are naturally focused on Math CC as it’s newer, you might also want to spend time unpacking ELA as there is still plenty of work to do around ELA.  I had many teachers asking questions around how to score ELA on the report card.  I appreciate your willingness to ask when you are unclear about something as this helps me understand that we still need to focus more PD around ELA CC in addition to Math.

Thank you to everyone for sending me Writing samples of your grade level PTAs.


Our ILT members- Karina M., Dene, Jeanne, Maria, Erika, Angela, Erin, Morgan, Adriana, Chris and I, will be gone on Tuesday for our ILT (Instructional Leadership Team) meeting and planning session.

This year, in order to increase and better our communication from district to school, and school to staff members, I will continue to periodically add “share outs” to our Staff Meeting agendas for committee members/reps to share what they are learning or discussing in their respective committee meetings.  (This first “share out” took place at our Oct. 22nd staff meeting) With regards to sharing out from ILT, our ILT team met in early August and was asked by me, “Where (what venue) do you think you should share what you learned and/or discussed today at ILT?” Since that specific ILT focused primarily on Math CC and reviewed how to really deeply unpack standards,  the team decided that it would be best to share and implement these ideas and suggestions via their PLC.  The ILT team also discussed their plan to discuss what their PLC time should look like- what every member should bring to PLC and be prepared to discuss during PLC.  After Tuesday’s ILT meeting, we will discuss once again how best to share out our “take aways” from the meeting.

Teacher of the Year Nomination:

If you haven’t already done so, please turn in your nomination forms to Rebecca on Monday.  We are supposed to be announcing the winner this week if possible.  Please read Rebecca’s heartfelt email which was sent out before break for details.  Thank you.

Question of the Week:

What are your favorite memories from this past week off?

Quote of the Week:

“To love what you do and feel that it matters- how could anything be more fun?’

-Katherine Graham