Friday Focus

November 13, 2015


Although K-2 has yet to experience the presentation, it is safe to say that our artist-in-residence visit was a success this year. Lisl H. Detlefsen, local author and artist, visited 3rd through 5th grade classrooms yesterday. She read aloud her new book Time for Cranberries and shared her writing process with the students.
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The artist-in-residence program is funded through Title I dollars we receive from the government because we work in a high poverty school. The goal is to expose our students to unique experiences in the arts that they might not otherwise have. For example, Lisl shared how she uses her own life experience on a cranberry marsh along with what she reads to inform her writing. She brought in equipment and provided images.
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The students had some terrific questions about life on a cranberry marsh and how Lisl came to be a published author. Thank you to all the classroom teachers for preparing our students for this successful event.
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If you have ideas for next year's artist-in-residence, please let me or a member of the RtI team know.
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That is the recommended ratio of positive to negative feedback that should occur in school environments. Paw prints are one such strategy. Remember to tell the student exactly why they are receiving the paw print when you give it to them. This can easily happen in common areas in which students are struggling, such as transitioning from lunch to recess or from recess to indoors. Other suggestions for helpful feedback include noticing who's ready for the next learning activity instead of those that aren't, and having discrete conversations with kids who are struggling that focuses on the actions of the student and not themselves personally.
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Maximizing Learning

In my recent classroom visits and instructional walks, I am continually impressed with how well so many of us utilize the school day. For example, in recent visits to the first grade wing near the end of the school day, I observed

  • Mrs. Bauknecht reading aloud to her students while they waited with their backpacks,
  • Mrs. Scheunemann finishing up a guided reading lesson minutes before dismissal,
  • Mrs. Xiong collecting writing reflections from her students' desks, and
  • Mrs. Black having a conversation about reading with one of her parents after the bell rang.

This maximizing of learning happens often throughout the building. Your hard work and dedication is noticed and appreciated.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Thursday, Nov. 19th, 4:30-7:30pm

221 8th Street North

Wisconsin Rapids, WI


“Unexpected kindness is the most powerful, least costly, and most underrated agent of human change.”

- Bob Kerrey