ENSC Family Notes

November 10, 2014

We Will Move On....

As you know, last week was the referendum vote. While this project did not pass, it doesn't mean we are defeated or finished with the mission that needs to be accomplished. The middle school is in need of repairs and upgrades to better serve the students and staff of this district. The Board's first choice project was not the popular choice and so they will now develop a second proposed project to pursue. Whether the project is a new building or a renovation, a large investment must be made to provide a quality facility for students. Again, what is the best long term and impactful investment of taxpayer dollars?

As they develop the next plan, the Board will need to ask themselves what does the public want? Many meetings were held, conversations were shared across the district, and information was presented at Board meetings. In the end, those who were opposed did not step forward and share their concerns so that the Board could address these issues. Most importantly, because the people opposed did not step forward and share their concerns, the administration and Board were not given the opportunity to provide correct, accurate information so they could make a truly informed decision based on truth.

There were several lessons to be learned through the process and hopefully, through this education, the next proposed project is approved by the community. One of those lessons is knowing that we must be more focused and determined in spreading the message to educate the public. Educate the public on not only the project itself, but educating the public on the referendum process, and even the details of voting.

I have had many people ask when this will be placed on the ballot again. The referendum question may be placed on the ballot in one year. The Board will continue the journey they started over one year ago and that is planning, developing, researching, and creating the next proposed middle school project to present to the public for approval.

Stay tuned......

Future Board Meetings

Board meetings until the end of the 2014 year will be held on November 19, December 3, and December 17.

This Week's All Star is an Extra Curricular Leader

How do you spell dedication? B-O-B A-V-E-R-Y

Hired in by East Noble High School in 1973, Bob Avery has continuously dedicated himself to our students even though he “retired” in 2004. Bob has been sharing his knowledge of Latin, Greek, and spelling tricks while coaching Spell Bowl and directing theatre.

At the Hoosier Spell Bowl Area Meet this past Monday night, Mr. Avery had two students receive a perfect score, while two other students received near-perfect recognition. The team finished 5th among Class 1 schools, and 10th overall in the entire state. The scores this season are high enough to earn yet another trip to the Indiana State Spell Bowl competition next weekend in Lafayette. We congratulate him as he has led our Spell Bowl teams to 18 consecutive years of state competition.

If Bob isn’t helping kids learn how to become better spellers, he’s here instructing them on the art of acting & comedy. In 1974 Mr. Avery became the director of Evening of Theatre, and since then Bob has brought to the stage outstanding dramas and comedies. His dedication to the East Noble Theatre has given hundreds of students an opportunity to perform and has made the theatre season much more versatile. His directing skills has brought to the stage the classics, old favorites, and new contemporary works. His most recent winter productions include Harvey, Moon over Buffalo, and Noises Off. Bob continues to encourage our students in every aspect of their lives because he truly has a passion for language and teaching. Thank you, Bob, for your commitment. We proudly present Mr. Avery as the East Noble High School All-Star of the Week!

Have a Great Week

While out shopping this weekend, it became obvious that the "holiday season" is here. Christmas candy and decorations are on the shelves, store decorations are quickly being added, and Christmas music can be heard on TV, radio, and in stores. I heard somewhere this weekend that "Thanksgiving" is the forgotten holiday. It is just slid in there as a buffer between Halloween and Christmas.

One thing I know, when the holiday season is over, winter arrives. Hopefully, the predictions I am hearing are correct. Colder temperatures, less moisture.

Have a great week.


Curriculum and Building Notes


This week I want to share a blog post that I read this week that I found very powerful.


Good Job! By Allison Behne

My daughter, Samantha, came home from school one day last week and dramatically announced that she had had the worst day ever. When I questioned why, she explained that she did not get the solo part in choir, she had forgotten her lunch, and her writing assignment had been returned with red marks all over it. Samantha went on to say, “I don’t understand what I could have done differently. When I was working on my assignment, my teacher said I was doing a good job, and when I finished my audition, the director said the same thing! Why did they lie to me? They got my hopes up for nothing.”

This made me reflect on the meaning of the words, good job. What is it we really mean when we say that? What made it good? Is that really the goal we have for our students—to work until something meets our standard?

Teachers often tend to be nurturers and encouragers. Saying “good job” is a habit many of us have gotten into. We are presented with the task of providing feedback on a daily basis. If we want the feedback to be effective, so that it can enhance future performance, it needs to be specific, purposeful, factual, and informative. “Good job” is none of those things. It is “feel-good” statement that is hollow in terms of what it provides to those on the receiving end.

Pay close attention this week and see if you catch yourself saying “good job” when you should be providing more specific feedback. Challenge yourself to use alternative feedback. If you find yourself struggling and unable to break the habit, try following up with specific details such as, “Good job finding a topic and getting started. Can you tell me how you chose this topic?” or "Good job sticking with this problem until you solved it. Can you show me what strategies you tried?"

The article below provides great tips on how to replace “good job” in the feedback you provide.

10X: "Good Job" Alternatives

East Noble High School

This week we welcome the newest member of our administrative team, Kathy Longenbaugh. Kathy was born and raised in Fort Wayne, IN, and graduated from Wayne HS. She went on to earn her Bachelor of Science degree from Huntington University and her Master of Arts in Education degree from Ball State University.

She has spent the last 19 years teaching Psychology, Sociology and United States History at Whitko High School. For the past three years, she has worked part of the school day as an Administrative Assistant and most recently filled in as Assistant Principal at the beginning of this school year. While at Whitko, she also spent time as the Senior Class sponsor and National Honor Society sponsor. She is married to Tim Longenbaugh and they have three girls--Kailtyn (15), Kylee (14) and Kendall (12). They reside in Columbia City, IN.

October 30th marked the kick-off event for the first East Noble Best Buddies chapter. The pairing party (where students with disabilities are paired with students without disabilities.) was held at the red barn at Oak Farm School. Over 50 students, friends and parents attended. Twenty-three Best Buddies pairs were established. Best Buddies is an international organization founded by Anthony Shriver. It is dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one to one friendships, integrated employment and leadership opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. There are currently more than 1,600 chapters in high schools, middle schools and colleges worldwide. East Noble along with Hamilton High School are currently the only chapters in Northern Indiana. Our kick-off event was an amazing experience for all who attended and we feel we are off to a great start.

Retired special education teacher, Sharon Blackford, is assisting the high school special education staff with a position vacated by Mr. Mike Campbell. Sharon brings a strong background in special education to assist the resource room students with their daily Core 40 work. We are pleased to have her join us during this time of transition.

East Noble Middle School

The news this week at the middle school was bittersweet. We were saddened with the election results but we will continue to build relationships and design lessons to best engage our students in their learning, no matter where we are housed. On a happier note, Brooke Cain, received the Indiana Learning Disabilities Teacher of the Year award this week. We have always known that Brooke is a dedicated and outstanding teacher, and it is nice to see her recognized for her efforts. Congratulations Brooke!

As part of our implementation of No Excuses University, middle school teachers continued their book study of the six exceptional systems focusing on the statistics related to the value of earning a college degree and college readiness.

All seventh graders visited Manchester University on Tuesday to tour the campus and participate in special activities. Students explored the classrooms, sports facilities, and student dorms. While groups toured, another group met with the admissions department to discuss the admissions process. In small groups, seventh graders designed and set entrance standards for their imaginary colleges. All had the opportunity to talk to college students and find out what college life is all about. A big thanks to Manchester University for hosting the 7th graders of ENMS!

Also, this week, students had the opportunity in their math and language arts classes to show off their skills using the, new to us program, Study Island. Students took a diagnostic pre-test to determine their grade level knowledge, and will be using it to further their excellence in class as well as No Excuses Time. We will be visiting Study Island often in the hopes to best prepare us for ISTEP!

During No Excuses Time on Thursday, 7th and 8th graders received their rewards for meeting or exceeding their goals for the first grading period. All students reaching their goals received East Noble Knights wrist bands and some also received entries for a grand prize drawing along with special privileges during lunch and NE Time.

In the classrooms, students continued their investigations into the study of matter through chemistry and geology, learned strategies for reading nonfiction, constructed “dominoes” for the causes of the American Revolution, and played a video game to “Use Math at the Mall.”

North Side Elementary

A good time was had by all at North Side's Mother-Son basketball night this Friday. There was a wonderful turn out for this PTO-sponsored event. Many thanks go to PTO president Stephanie Ross and all the volunteers that helped make this event so fun! Mother's competed against sons in basketball events, Mr. Ogle and Mrs. Pepple had a spirited game of "PIG" (Mr. Ogle won), and there were some excited relay races that kept the kiddos smiling. Thanks for everyone's support!

This week North Side fifth graders continued their study of resource consumption with their "Energizing Indiana" unit. Students heard a guest speaker from Indiana-Michigan Power and participated in a daylong event of resource consumption versus conservation tracking. Students were given a set amount of water to use for the day. Any trip to the bathroom or drinking fountain would use up precious resources. It really opened kids eyes to what limited resources we have on our blue planet.

Rome City Elementary

Every student in Ms. McCarville’s Kindergarten class received a college logo t-shirt. They were the winners in our Big G Boxtop contest. They collected over 1,500 box tops for Rome City School. Way to go Kindergarteners!

Thursday evening the 6th grade band performed their first concert. The audience heard how much the band has improved from their very first note. They also performed duets, small ensembles and other various songs. They also performed three rock songs and concluded with “Joy to the World.”

After the 6th grade band concert was concluded the students met Mrs. Lindy Munson, their future counselor from East Noble High School. There they pledged to their parents to graduate from high school and signed a giant pledge to post at Rome City.

Friday students at Rome City were acknowledged for their good character. Students who displayed good character for the month of September were nominated by various staff members. The Students of the Month will have an opportunity to eat with Mrs. Green in November

South Side Elementary

This week, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic visited South Side with a brass ensemble. They shared their talents with pre-K through 6th grade, playing both classical and early rock. Each member of the ensemble also talked about the mechanics behind their instruments and did demonstrations of how the pieces work together to make music.

Our grade level update this week comes from 6th grade: As the weeks go by, 6th grade gets busier and digs into work harder. This was evident with the results of the first round of Acuity - both math and language arts scores demonstrate that the students' efforts in the first part of the year is paying off. Way to go, Class of 2025! Our 6th graders have been studying the events on Earth and beyond. Our science focus has been on planets in our solar system and tracking the moon phases from students' backyards. Our social studies focus has been world government and our nation's government, while monitoring election events from CNN Student News (a personal favorite for many students). Our week finished up with students publishing their comparison/contrast expository essays in which they explained the similarities and differences between our U.S. government and three other developed nations. While most of our writers integrated images of these countries into their writing, some took it to the next level and created "news" articles using a newsletter format. We look forward now to a new trimester and more opportunities for our students to learn and grow.

Wayne Center Elementary

Our sixth grade girls have been honing their volleyball sills under the direction of coach, Mrs. Foster, for the past several weeks. They began their competitive play in the gym at East Noble Middle School on Saturday, November 1 and ended their season this weekend. The girls greatly improved their skills over the season and had some good serves and volleying in their last games. Through practices Coach Foster taught the team the rules of volleyball as well as fundamental skills such as serving and setting.

Over 50 students have been preparing for our upcoming Veterans Day program that will be held Tuesday at 1:15 p.m. Choral groups and the sixth grade band will be performing, and a number of students will be providing information on the history of Veterans Day and why we celebrate it. A special wreath ceremony will be held, and sixth graders will teach our audience how to properly fold the American flag. We invite all parents and community members to join us for the program

Alternative Learning Center

We ended a record breaking trimester this week. The students worked hard to complete 122 credits in one trimester. They are very proud of their accomplishment, as are the staff. The ALC shows students, who might be behind in credits or struggle in the regular classroom setting, that educational success is possible and there's still time to graduate. Starting Monday, November 10th, some new students will be starting at the ALC for trimester 2 and hopefully they find a program that works well for their academic needs too.

Congratulations students on your success and hard work! Have a wonderful trimester 2!

Avilla Elementary

OUR National Elementary Honor Society officers took time during the day on Thursday to honor former East Noble student Nick Hartge. Nick was a veteran that was killed in battle while serving OUR country. Each year at Veteran’s Day we take a wreath to his gravesite to thank him for sacrificing so much for all of us. OUR NEHS also took a wreath to the American Legion in Avilla to thank all of the veterans for our freedoms that we have. OUR Veteran’s Day program will be held on Tuesday at 10 am. We would like to invite veterans to help us honor past and current members of our military that give us the freedoms that we are able to enjoy each and every day.

This past Monday OUR 4th grade hosted a blood drive. This is the third consecutive year that the 4th grade has hosted this important event for OUR community. Thank you to Mrs. Smith, Mrs. Amstutz, and Mrs. Carroll for all the work you put into this event each and every year.

This past Friday OUR 6th grade visited the University of Notre Dame. OUR students were treated to a historical tour of the university, lunch in the South Hall, a tour of an engineering lab, the Houses for Haiti graduate engineering students program, and a Men’s and Women’s Swim and Dive Meet. The students were able to meet two gentlemen from Haiti that were visiting Notre Dame for a conference regarding the program between Haiti and Notre Dame grad students. OUR students learned that this was the first time these two men had ever been in outside temperatures below 60 degrees! These men, along with Prof. Alex, left their conference to meet OUR students before the grad students presented the program to us. This was one of many ways that Notre Dame has shown OUR students over the past five years how important young students are to the university. We cannot thank the university enough for all that it has done for us over the years. We can’t wait to do it again next year! A HUGE “THANK YOU” goes out to ALL the parents and grandparents that helped chaperone the trip! We could not have had such a wonderful experience without you. I will let the pictures show a few of the things we did and saw on Friday.