Elementary E-News

Issue 19 - January 2015

Happy New Year!

"The amount of talk that students do is correlated with their achievement." Speaking Volumes, Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey

Winter Point People Dates

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Math Update


ALL elementary grades include the following Math processing standards in their TEKS: “ The student will be able to display, explain and justify mathematical ideas and arguments using precise mathematical language in written and oral communication”.

How are students on your campus sharing and justifying their mathematical thinking? What conversations are you having with teachers to ensure this standard is being fostered in classrooms?

Upcoming Trainings:

Please note the meeting date changes for vertical teams 3 and 4

January 27- K-2 Vertical Team 1

January 29- K-2 Vertical Team 2

February 3- K-2 Vertical Team 3

February 5- K-2 Vertical Team 4

Is your campus interested in looking at how to make the most of their problem solving block or the power of student work? If so please contact me!

Kerise Ridinger

Science Update

Chicks (1st Grade) and Fish (Kinder) are coming soon/4th Quarter. Time to get out the incubators and aquariums. Classes to help teachers prepare for a great experience for our students:

Everything Chicks- Minshew Elementary 3:30-4:30 February 19th Sign up in Eduphoria

Everything Fish- McClure Elementary 3:30-4:30 February 19th Sign up in Eduphoria

Elementary Regional Science Fair: Campus and Student Entry Forms due to Keir by Monday, January 19th. Forms are in Forethought in 5th Grade Science “Resources tab” and were also sent to AP’s and 5th Grade Point People.

Science Tutoring:

If you need support or input in planning 5th Grade Science intervention/tutoring please let me know.

Have you thought about contact our high schools to see if students needed Green Cord hours would come to tutor students in Science after school?

Have you thought about using Science reading passages during reading tutoring? Math problems can contain Science facts.

PEROT MUSEUM- Free Educator Admission to the http://www.perotmuseum.org/events-and-programs/school-programs/educator-resources/educator-resources.html

Mini-CAST - Saturday, February 7th in Garland. This is a great opportunity for Science teachers to improve their practice, network, take specific classes, etc. Only $30. Scan QR code for registration information:

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Science and Social Studies OI Trainings

Science and Social Studies 1st Grade: January 27th

Science and Social Studies 2nd Grade: February 2nd

Social Studies 4th Grade: January 20th

Science 4th Grade: January 20th

Science 5th Grade: January 29th

Social Studies Update

Pledge to the Texas Flag: While rendering the salute to the Texas Flag, a person should stand erect, face the Texas Flag and hold their right hand over the heart.

IMA Committee: Campuses should have received materials and/or log in directions from these vendors: TCI, Pearson, TCM, and Nystrom. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt materials should be coming soon. The other vendors on the rubric I sent out may or may not be sending any materials. We will have a vendor showcase at the beginning of February for committee members and any other interested teachers (more info later). Please contact me if you have any questions.

District Assessment Windows 3-5
3rd Grade DA2 Diversity: February 6-February 27
4th Grade DA2 So Long Santa Ana: February 13-March 6
5th Grade DA2 US Constitution and Bill of Rights: December 15-January 21
Interested in training your staff on Thinking Maps? I would love to talk with you about this for next year!
Stacie Nickols snickols@mckinneisd.net
Want to learn more about Thinking Maps first? http://thinkingmaps.com

Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr. a short documentary by Studies Weekly

ELM Campuses

ELM Twitter Chat- Come ENGAGE with other ELM/PBL teachers.

February 24th 3:30-4:30 #McKELM

Opportunities for Crit: Keir and Stacie are available to offer crit on your plans at any stage of their development! email one or both of us to set up a time for us to come to your campus

Just InTime Trainings- All trainings at Glen Oaks 3:30-4:30

January 15th

§ Authentic Launch- (30 mins)

F.1-Engage students in the purpose and challenge of each unit during the launch utilizing authentic audiences.

§ Developing Questions- (30 mins)

F.3- Utilize questioning to guide in-depth problem analysis, stimulate deeper thinking and formatively assess student progress.

§ Formative Assessments- (30 mins)

F.4-Provide consistent, specific assessment feedback for learners to guide decision-making and progress toward mastery of the

standards and soft skills.

§ Intervention (DIYs and Workshops)- (30 mins)

F.5-Personalize learning for students through workshops, resources, and DIY activities based on learner-identified needs.

January 20th – Repeat of January 15th

February 17th

§ Create Critique- F6 (1 hour)

F.6-Model and encourage a culture of critique and iterative design to enhance the quality of research and creation.

February 26th - Repeat of February 17th


DRA District MOY Reminders:

· Who will be entering?

Only Grades K-2 and will be for all students in those grade levels

· What will be the due date?

Friday, January 30 is the due date for all data to be entered into Aware

· Is there a district DRA window?

No, each campus team can select the schedule that best suits the team to administer the DRA. The teams will need to have it completed and entered by district due date

Writing Strategy TIP:

Take a look: Being a Good Writer: Writing Tips and Strategies from Lucy Caulkins

ELAR Opportunities:

Webinar Opportunities

February 12,


Building Strong Vocabulary



Chandra Shaw

March 26, 2015

Better than Basic: Moving Past the "2" in Expository and Persuasive Writing


Sharon Runge

April 9, 2015

Strategies for Improving Short Answers


Sharon Runge

January 27, 3:4-15pm (Central)

Part 2: CSI (Comma Splice Investigator): Investigate Revision and Editing Like Never Before!

Part 2 tackles Revising and Editing. Learn how to take spelling, word choice and grammar to an attainable and memorable level by learning symbols that speak louder than labels for parts of speech. See how Comma Drama comes to life and how CSI (Comma Splice Investigators) solves the craziest comma crimes. All of this will lead to amazing sentences and sentence fluency never thought possible!

Click here to find out more!

Spelling Bee 2014-15

Click on updated calendar and view updated information for Collin County Spelling Bee. Thank you for sharing this information to your spelling bee campus contact person and to parents of campus winners.

Follow me on Twitter: @mona_rsavage