Black Bob Staff Memo

week of November 16-20

Upcoming Events

Next Week:

Monday November 16 C day

6:00 Feeder Site Council Meeting at Frontier Trail

Tuesday November 17 D Day

9:30 4th Grade PLC

2:30 All School Performance of 1st Grade Turkey Lurkey

6:30 Evening Performance of 1st Grade Turkey Lurkey

Wednesday November 18 E day

12:30 2nd Grade PLC

1:30 5th Grade PLC

2:30 1st Grade PLC

3:30-4:00 Student Council

Thursday November 19 A Day

Thanksgiving Holiday Luncheon

10:00 and 1:30 Classified Staff

2:30 Kindergarten PLC

Friday November 20 B Day

Collaboration Meeting Day (SIT)

10:30 3rd Grade PLC

Next Week:

Monday November 23 C Day

Tuesday November 24 D Day

Grill Day

Wednesday- Friday No School

Happy Thanksgiving!

The Lengths teachers will go...

  • She will catch a student's throw-up in the trash can. Most of it anyways. Some will splash onto her Payless shoes.
  • He will buy snacks for the children who forget to bring them, so that they won't be hungry.
  • She will watch a student write his name and correct him 145 times until he stops confusing the d with a b. She knows his name is Todd, not Tobb.
  • He will rethink his math lesson six times during morning coffee.
  • She will return a parent call during her short lunch period because she knows they're worried about their child.
  • He will make sure the shy girl makes a friend.
  • She will grab four extra pairs of mittens from Walmart, so that no one will have cold hands at recess.
  • He will painstakingly listen to a first grader struggle through a book every day and get choked up two months later when she finally begins to read fluently.
  • She will need to use the bathroom at 9:15, but won't actually get to go until 11:45.
  • He will send a student to the office with a note telling the principal how well she did that day because he knows she needs a boost.
  • She will come to school sick because it's Friday and the spelling test is going to be really hard this week.
  • He will make a child laugh.
  • She will wipe a child's tears, then cry some of her own on the way home.

Here's to all of YOU who do what can never be measured by a test.

Check out what I saw in classrooms this week!

What does YOUR classroom look like?

What does YOUR classroom look like?

A Peek Inside Effective & Not So….

In their book Seven Simple Secrets: What the Best Teachers Know and Do, Annette Breaux and Todd Whitaker share their observations of classrooms of effective teachers and ineffective teachers. They “have found that the most effective teachers’ classrooms all looked uncannily similar” (p. 22). And, ineffective teachers’ rooms also looked remarkably similar. Below, a tour of two class-rooms….which one is yours?

A look inside the less effective teacher’s classroom:

• Lessons lacked enthusiasm and excitement on the part of the teacher and, consequentially, among the students.

• The teacher did most of the talking, and the students did little listening.

• There was little, if any, evidence of structured routines and procedures.

• There were lots of teacher warnings for student misbehavior.

• There were numerous interruptions of the lesson for the teacher to try to reestablish control (Note: we use the word reestablish lightly, as the fact is that control was never fully established in the first place.)

The teacher was reactive.

• Lesson plans were vague and often confusing.

• A clear objective was usually nonexistent.

• There was little teacher movement around the room. The teacher generally stayed at the front of the room. Guess where most of the behavior problems occurred!

• There was an overuse of worksheet and independent textbook activities.

• The punishment for any given infraction lacked consistency. The severity of the punishment was usually in direct proportion to the teacher’s anxiety level.

• The teacher openly showed frustration.

• The lessons were usually “one size fits all.” Unfortunately, most fit none.

• There was little, if any, positive reinforcement.

• The teacher rarely smiled. In fact, in almost all cases, the teacher appeared to dislike teaching.

Now, a peek inside the “effective” teacher’s classroom:

• Lessons were filled with enthusiasm and excitement on the part of the teacher, and consequentially, among students.

• The students did most of the talking and the doing, prompted by the teacher’s questioning and guidance.

• Routines and procedures were evident. Students knew exactly what was expected of them.

• There were no teacher warnings for student misbehavior. If a rule was broken, there was a consistent consequence.

• There were almost no interruptions of the lesson for the purpose of reestablishing control.

• The teacher was proactive.

• Lesson plans were well written. Any teacher could have picked up the plans and taught from them, knowing exactly what to do.

• The objective of the lesson was always clearly established for the students. There was no doubt in their minds what they were learning and why they were learning it.

• There was constant teacher movement around the room. Guess what happened to behavior problems! They were almost nonexistent.

• There was little dependence on worksheet and independent textbook activities. Lessons were inviting and exciting, and students remained actively engaged in meaningful activities.

• The punishment for any given infraction was consistent.

• The teacher almost never openly showed frustration. Even in the rare case of misbehavior, the problem was handled seriously but calmly. The teacher never appeared to be anything but in control.

From 7 Simple Secrets by Annette Breaux & Todd Whitaker. Eye on Education, 2006, p. 22-23.

Spelling Bee Reminders

Grades 3-5 Teachers,

Please have your class bee completed before Tuesday November 24th. Each class will have 2 representatives plus an alternate. Remember to send home the additional study list with your classroom winners. Parents will appreciate this.

Our School Spelling Bee will be December 11. (Time to be determined)