Friday, March 6, 2015

The week of March 2-6, 2015

Happy Friday!

Well, today as I was driving in to work at 5 AM I ran into a hawk. Yes, I literally hit a hawk with the windshield of my car. I think it flew off, but I also think I hurt it pretty good. Is that a good or bad omen? I feel terrible.

Again, another busy week, but seeing you all in action just reaffirms my love and belief in this place. You are all doing such great work, put in such terrific effort, and definitely are passionate about the success and achievement of our students. Here's what I saw...

This week:


  • This week teams started working on report cards and conferences. Teams were working on a variety of things form PWPs to data gathering to discussion of interventions.
  • Some teams continued to work on the shared data sheet. This sheet has been really helpful to me as I have been able to get the big picture as far as growth and stagnation as well as the little picture when it comes to specific students. In fact, when I was on the phone with a parent I was able to pull up a student's scores and have a real conversation about academics because I usually do not have that information at my fingertips. That was HUGE!
  • I also witnessed teams have really powerful discussions about student progress while filling out the sheets- so important. 
District Benchmarks
  • Grades 1-5 each participated in the district benchmarks. I have not looked at our scores yet, but I am proud that you all participated so you could see if your students had growth or not. I hope you got valuable information.
3rd Grade field trip
  • The 3rd graders took a field trip to Lake Cachuma. I am so jealous. Apparently one student even saw a bald eagle- can't beat that real-life experience!
Read the Most/Read Across America
  • Last Friday and at different times this week various classes participate in these reading campaigns and students ended up reading A LOT. I hope that these things start sparking a real interest in reading that the students carry into their lives outside of school.
Interactive projectors
  • I was able to witness the interactive projectors in use by Ms. Burke's class. It is so cool. If you have time, check it out. 
  • I think it would be really neat to have her students teach the general ed students how the projector works. Any volunteers?
Google classroom
  • As part of the use of the Chromebooks, 4th grade is starting to really see the power of Google. The 4th grade has created Google Classroom accounts for their classes. It is used a a learning management system. It's where students go to in order to access their assignments, videos, and post their own work. I encourage you to see it in action, but if you can't, at least talk to the 4th grade team to hear about what they are doing and their thoughts.
Content integration
  • It warms my heart to see science and social studies integrated into language arts and math. That carry over creates real authentic experiences for our students and not only engages them, but gives them an opportunity to to see math and language used in authentic way.

Coming Up:

Staff Meeting
  • We have a staff meeting planned for Monday, March 9 at 2:45. Here is the agenda:
    • GATE presentation- Jim Albertson
    • SBAC Information
    • AG Day- Sarah Castaneda
    • Time for Kids- Nancy Schuler Jones
    • Spelling Bee in April
    • AR Strategies- 1st & 6th
    • Tech Integration sharing- 4th and Candice Grossi
    • New devices

  • Next PLC will be dedicated again to report card prep and conferences.
  • I want to remind you that you could also do data entry on the shared document. I really need that finished by the end of the year at the latest. The sooner you have in the current data, the better, though.
Honey Pots
  • During spring break Mr. Martin will be distributing honey pots to each classroom. Don't be alarmed, but make sure you find a place for it in your class. These are a crucial item in case of emergency.


  • We are working on schedules and trainings, so please know that we in the next month or so you will need to attend a training if you are in a testing grade (3-6).
  • Also, it is a good idea to start prepping yourself and your students. There are lots of tools that you can use. Here are a few:

From IT
  • Here is your tech tip of the week - as we prepare to deploy Chromebooks - checking into all the Google resources will help us prepare everyone for their arrival.  Please have your teachers check out Google for Education and all available information. 
Have a great weekend. Spring Break is around the corner!

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