Color of Our Worlds 4/2018

Educating ALL MCSD Students for success.

"How do we inspire & empower our kids through literature?" Workshop with Mrs. Galasso at Hobe Sound Elementary School

Big picture

Help Your Child Improve in Test-Taking

American children must be ready to learn from the first day of school. And of course, preparing children for school is a historic responsibility of parents. Test. It's a loaded word. Important...something to care about...something that can mean so much we get apprehensive thinking about it.

Tests are important, especially to school children. A test may measure a basic skill. It can affect a year's grade. Or, if it measures the ability to learn, it can affect a child's placement in school. So it's important to do well on tests.

Besides, the ability to do well on tests can help throughout life in such things as getting a driver's license, trying out for sports, or getting a job. Without this ability, a person can be severely handicapped.

Your child can develop this ability, and you can help then to do it. Just try some of the simple tips below:

Eleven Tips to Help Your Child Prepare for Tests

To help children prepare adequately for tests (whether teacher made or standardized), you can do several things to provide support and create a positive test-taking experience.

1. The best way to prepare for tests is to study, know the work, and take the right courses.

2. If your child is nervous at test time, ask her teacher for tips on helping her relax.

3. Make sure that your child is in school during the testing sessions. Do not plan any doctor or dental appointments on test dates.

4. Make sure that you are aware of your child’s performance and that you can help interpret the results when they become available.

5. Remember to keep well-informed about your child’s tests. Know how test results are used, and how they will affect your child’s placement in school.

6. If there are major differences between standardized test scores and school grades, find out why.

7. Encourage your child to study over a period of time rather than “cram” the night before.

8. Encourage your child to listen carefully to all test-taking directions given by the teacher and to ask questions about any directions that are unclear.

9. See that your child gets his/her regular amount of sleep before the tests and is well-rested.

10. Make sure that your child eats his/her usual breakfast on the day of the test. Hunger can detract from a good test performance.

11. Encourage your child to do his/her best.

Resource: American School Counselor Association

MORE on Preparing Your Child for Testing

How to Help

Take a deep breath. Step away from the flashcards. As a parent, the most important way you can help your child do well on tests is to read with your child regularly, talk with her about her experiences, and provide a quiet work space at home. When well-meaning parents focus too much on test results, they put undue pressure on young children. For kids who struggle with attention or memorization tasks, testing can be extremely stressful because it requires students to draw entirely on these skills.

To help prepare for routine classroom assessments:

• Provide a variety of books, children's magazines, and enriching experiences to spark your child's curiosity and build vocabulary

• Make sure your child gets time and space for homework

• Make sure your child gets enough rest and a well-balanced diet

• Consult with your child's teacher to find out if there are specific skills you can practice at home

To help prepare for standardized tests:

• Ask the teacher for the testing schedule and a practice test so that you can familiarize your child with the format ahead of time so he knows what to expect

• Respond to any concerns your child has with encouragement and support. Emphasize that there are lots of ways to express what you know, and that these tests are just one measure.

Resource: By: Reading Rockets

Big picture

Welcome to the FSA Portal

This portal is your source for information about the Florida Standards Assessments.

Florida’s K-12 assessment system measures students’ achievement of Florida’s education standards, which were developed and implemented to ensure that all students graduate from high school ready for success in college, career, and life. Assessment supports instruction and student learning, and test results help Florida’s educational leadership and stakeholders determine whether the goals of the education system are being met.

For information about FCAT 2.0 or NGSSS EOC Assessments, please visit

For more information about Florida standards, course descriptions, and standard resources, please visit

Port Salerno Elementary School Hosts Science Night!

Port Salerno Stingrays participated in 20 hands-on activities and experienced a planetarium visit!
Big picture
Big picture

Graphic Organizers to Help Kids with Writing By Jenn Osen-Foss, Understood (2017)

Writing Graphic organizers are simple yet powerful tools that can help kids with dysgraphia, executive functioning issues, and other issues that can cause trouble with writing. A graphic organizer not only helps break an assignment into smaller steps. It also can help kids organize their thoughts in a very visual way. There are many different kinds of graphic organizers. The five downloadable ones here are commonly used in grade school, but they can help kids through high school. Each one also comes with an example of what the graphic organizer looks like when it’s filled in. All you need to do to use these graphic organizers is print them out. (The designs are also simple enough that you can quickly draw them by hand.) These graphic organizers are also fillable. So if your child prefers to type, he can type directly on an organizer and then print it out. Choosing the right topic is another way you can encourage your child to write more.


Big picture
Big picture
Big picture
Big picture
Big picture

Port Salerno Elementary Hosts Family Math Night at McDonald's!

Kindness: Spring Into Action!

Big picture
Being kind is always in season—and it can give your child a more positive outlook and help her think of others.

Try these tips for encouraging kindness.

Surprise, surprise!

Together, brain-storm ways your youngster could surprise someone with kindness. She might leave a cheerful message for a neighbor (“You brighten my day”) with sidewalk chalk and sign her name. Or perhaps she’ll make a list of things she admires about a sibling and put it where he will find it. At school, maybe she’ll let a class-mate go ahead of her at the water fountain.

Reach out.

As a family, think about how to show kindness in your community. Deliver Meals on Wheels, and have your child decorate place mats to include. Or save spare change in a jar—when it’s full, buy crayons and coloring books from the dollar store and donate them to a children’s hospital.

Big picture

Ever wonder why we celebrate April Fool’s Day, where it originated from or how it is celebrated around the world?

April Fools Day Facts

  • The exact origin of April Fool’s Day is unknown however the most popular theory has to do with a change of a calendar.

  • It is believed that April Fool’s Day may started in France when Pope Charles IX changed the calendar to go with the Roman calendar.

  • In France before 1582 the new year started on April 1st. It was changed to January 1st in 1582.

  • Some of the people there did not know about the change and continued to celebrate the new year on April 1st. Those people were considered “April Fools.”

  • Other people believe that April Fools came from the Roman Festival of Hilaria, a celebration of the god Attis. The Festival of Hilaria was held on March 25th and was a Roman day of laughing and telling jokes.

  • Some people believe that April Fools came from Sizdah Be-dar.

  • Sizadah Be-dar has roots in Zoroastrian (an ancient Iranian religion) belief that laughter and joy symbolize throwing away bad thoughts.

  • Sizdah Be-dar began around 536 BC.

  • Iranians play jokes on each other on Sizdah Be-dar the 13th day of the Persian New Year which is celebrated on April 1st or 2nd.

April Fools Day Around the World

  • April Fools is celebrated in many countries.

  • In France, Italy and Belgium people celebrate April Fools by trying to stick paper fish on someone without them noticing then yell April Fish in their language.

  • In Scotland April Fools is called Hunt-the-Gowk Day. A day of pranks and jokes.

  • In Denmark April Fools is celebrated on May 1st and is called Maj-Kat.

  • In Spanish speaking counties such as Spain and Mexico April Fools is celebrated on December 28th the Day of Holy Innocents.

Big picture

Drop Everything and Read on April 12, 2018!

• What is D.E.A.R.?

D.E.A.R. stands for “Drop Everything and Read”, a national month-long celebration of reading designed to remind folks of all ages to make reading a priority activity in their lives. Because, what’s more fun(damental) than reading, really?

• When is D.E.A.R. celebrated?

D.E.A.R. programs have been held nationwide on April 12th in honor of Beverly Cleary’s birthday, since she first wrote about D.E.A.R. in Ramona Quimby, Age 8 (pages 40-41).

• Can D.E.A.R. be celebrated anytime?

Yes, of course! You are encouraged to “Drop Everything and Read” every day throughout the year. The goal of the program is to prompt people to make reading a regular part of their routine . . . whether they’re reading solo or together with their classmates, parents, or friends. So, go ahead and pledge to “drop” what you’re doing in order to read a good book.

• How can I participate?

As an individual, you can participate by attending an event in your community or by reading at home with your child

Big picture

April Is Financial Literacy Awareness Month

Many younger students may not need financial literacy currently but it's essential for them to develop financial literacy as they get older. What is financial literacy? Financial literacy, according to Investopedia, is "the ability to use knowledge and skills to make effective and informed money management decisions," such as saving, spending, writing a check, planning, management, and more.

Teaching financial literacy in the classroom helps students learn the value of money, how to set up a savings account, how to create a personal budget, and more. Education World has curated a list of lesson ideas, games, books, videos and activities to use when educating students on financial literacy.

Here are a few:

1. Arthur's Pet Business by Marc Brown: In this book, Amazon says, "Arthur starts his own pet sitting business to show Mom and Dad that he can be responsible! But between a boa constrictor, an ant farm, and a group of frogs, he's got his hands full! Can Arthur still prove he can handle a dog of his own?" Students can read this book so they can learn what it is like to start their own business and be young entrepreneurs.

2.A Day at Dollar General: In this on-line game; (, students follow a young boy and his parents as they learn how to budget, plan a shopping list, spend wisely, and manage money. Students can click on each category and then follow the young boy and his mother making the right choices. Students can also participate in activities and choose which food items have the best bargain.

3. Money As You Grow: This is less of an activity, but more of a resource for students of all age levels to turn to. Money As You Grow ( offers tips for kids of all ages, and suggested activities for parents to participate with their children.

4. The Coin Counting Book by Rozanne Lanczak Williams: With this book, students can, Amazon says, "change just adds up with this bankable book illustrated with real money. Counting, adding, and identifying American currency from one penny to one dollar is exciting and easy. When you have counted all your money, you can decide to save it or spend it."

Go to al_Literacy.shtml? for more information and activities.

Resource: Education World; Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

Big picture

Earth Day is April 22!

Ever wondered how Earth Day started? This observance arose from an interest in gathering national support for environmental issues.

In 1970, San Francisco activist John McConnell and Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson separately asked Americans to join in a grassroots demonstration. McConnell chose the spring equinox (March 21, 1970) and Nelson chose April 22.

Millions of people participated, and today, Earth Day continues to be widely celebrated (mostly on April 22).

Common Earth Day activities include planting trees, cleaning up litter, or simply enjoying nature through hiking, gardening, or taking a stroll in a local park.

Big picture

Earth Day Quotes and Poetry

The thirsty earth soaks up the rain,

And drinks, and gapes for drink again.
The plants suck in the earth and are
With constant drinking fresh and fair.

–Abraham Cowley

The “green things growing” whisper me
Of many an earth-old mystery
–Eben Eugene Rexford

Summer, fall, winter, spring,
The seasons rotate as each brings
Its special beauty to this Earth of ours.

Winter’s snow and summer’s flowers;

Frozen rivers will flow come spring,

There is a renewal of everything.
–Edna Frohock

While the bright radiant sun in centre glows,
The earth in annual motion round it goes;
At the same time on its own axis reels,
And gives us change of seasons as it wheels
–The 1793 Old Farmer’s Almanac

O Spring-time sweet!
The whole Earth smiles, thy coming to greet

Big picture

April 30 is Dia de Los Ninos, Dia de Los Libros!

April 30th is the day to celebrate children, literature, culture and diversity. Celebrate by reading with your child and teaching them about another culture.
Big picture
Big picture

2018 Climate Survey Open Till April 6!

It is that time of year again. We want YOUR input on how you view your child's school's climate so that we can continuously improve the services we provide to you.

This Climate Survey is taken by parents, students, and teachers. It is based on the hallmarks of safe and effective schools' research evaluating principles such as a positive school climate, the school's discipline system, and staff roles. We value your input.

Big picture

Florida’s 2017-2018 ESE Parent Survey: February 1 – May 31

Each year, the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) surveys parents of children with an individual educational plan (IEP) to determine how well your child’s school is partnering with you and promoting your involvement in your child’s education. All states must collect this data as part of their State Performance Plan, as required under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Click on the links below for more information and to access the survey.
Big picture
Big picture

What is iReady?

i-Ready Diagnostic & Instruction is an online, interactive earning environment designed to assess students and then provide individualized instruction based on each student’s unique need.

iReady Login Link

Big picture
The Martin County School District has launched our new mobile app, which is now available for iPhones®, iPads®, Android™, Blackberry™ and Windows™ devices by searching “Martin County Schools” from SchoolInfo App. The free app enables parents, students, alumni, faculty and staff to quickly access all of the who, what, when and where for the District and every school in the district.
Big picture
Big picture
Big picture

Title I/Migrant/ELL Services Department

The Color of Our Worlds is an Electronic Newsletter for the school communities of:

AMS: Anderson Middle School

HSE: Hobe Sound Elementary School

IMS: Indiantown Middle School

JDP: J. D. Parker Elementary School

PWE: Pinewood Elementary School

PSE: Port Salerno Elementary School

SWE: SeaWind Elementary School

WES: Warfield Elementary School

WLC: Willoughby Learning Center