January Supervisor's Corner

South Harrison Township Elementary School ~ 2016

SH Curriculum News and Notes (CNN)

We had much to celebrate last month including a new district reporting system where families could view online report cards using the online student data system PowerSchool. In addition grade 3 student progress was reported on a brand new standards based report card and in grades k-2 on a newly revised version of the report card used last year. Thank you to all the parents, teachers, and technology support personnel that assisted to make this launch as successful as possible.

Thus far in the school year we have worked with staff in district to explore professional development topics related to Balanced Literacy, SGO's, writing programs, standards based reporting, Fountas and Pinnell benchmark assessment, PowerSchool, and writing workshop, in addition to program supporting the RtI program. Staff attending out of district workshops have explored topics as varied as literacy in Art, PARCC ELA and Guided Math. We hope to continue to explore the topics listed and in the month to come, add Next Generation Science Standards, and assessment and data literacy.

In January, staff will continue to work on the MCAs under the guidance of Mr. Rosenheim. This dedicated team of teachers and administrators has already begun the vetting process on ELA unit 3. Meetings with Grade Level Teams (GLT) will continue as well as discussions in Professional Learning Teams (PLTs).

As January begins, we are delighted to welcome back, Ms. Sarah Brown, who recently returned from maternity leave, to the third grade team. In addition, we would like to welcome, Ms. Megan Bruder as the new STEM supervisor in grades 6-12. We look forward to working with them both in the new year!

Katie, Rachael, Robert, Stefanie, and Trisha


As we move into the second trimester we will continue to run trials with the capabilities and use of the PowerSchool system. Specifically we will run trials in the use of the online grade book as a reporting system in grades K-3 before deciding how we go live with the system in grades K-3 next year. In addition we will use the information learned from the introduction of the online grade book and use of the K-3 standards based report card, to develop the 4th grade standards based report card for next year.

At the request of some teachers I have detailed Information about grading procedures for use this school year in a document e-mailed to teachers before the school break. I have also included the document on the district "L" drive in the Curriculum 000 folder.

Highlights of the procedures described in the document include:

  • A description of the grade weight and ranges for grade K-6 for classroom, department and special area teachers.
  • An outline of the expectations for grade book use for teachers who report using standards based grades
If you have any questions about the procedures please contact the Elementary Instructional, Supervisor, Rachael Anderson, at andersonr@kingsway.k12.nj.us

Supporting G.R.E.A.T. Instruction!

This months featured element (supporting G.R.E.A.T. Instruction and highlighting Marzano DQs and elements) focus on DQ 2, Element 6: Identifying Critical Information.

Element 6 sets the tone for the lesson. It is here that the teacher carefully selects the critical information to be taught and ensures it is at a high enough level to ensure rigor. The focus here should be for a teacher to identify elements of the new content that are critical to a student’s success in meeting the learning goal. Each learning goal should have 2-3 critical-input experiences that provide focus for the teacher and the students. These critical-input experiences should utilize a variety of learning modalities and be fast-paced and engaging to help anchor the information in memory. Implementation strategies include:

Visual Activities

  • Storyboards, Graphics Organizers, Pictures, Movie Clips, Demonstrations, or Photographs

Narrative Activities

  • Relevant Stories, Personal Stories, Dramatic Enactments, or Audio Presentations

Body Language and Voice to Portray Excitement or Suspense

  • Raising or lowering voice, Eye contact with students, Gesturing, Facial Expressions, Movement around room, or Pause time at key points

"Look Fors" for Identifying Critical Information:

• Teacher begins the lesson by explaining why upcoming content is important.

• Teacher tells students to get ready for some important information.

• Teacher cues the importance of upcoming information in some indirect fashion (i.e.: Tone of voice, Body position, or Level of excitement).

• Students can describe the level of importance of the information addressed in class.

• Students can explain why the content is important to pay attention to.

• Students visibly adjust their level of engagement

Scaffold Supports and Extension of Learning:

Scaffold Supports:

• Create sentence strips that contain critical and non-critical content and have students sort them into those categories

• Develop specific routines to identify critical content so that students recognize the cues

• Post resources that students can reference such as, picture keys, important steps of a process, interactive word walls

• Provide pictures of hand gestures used when presenting critical content

• Provide a list of key words

• Prepare a list of questions to hand to students who struggle with identifying critical content

• Provide a graphic organizer that has some examples already embedded

Extension of Learning:

• Students create their own organizer

• Students create their own questions about the critical content

• Rank critical content in order of significance

Have students create a quick guide on ways to identify critical content as you are reading

Please access the video links below for more information:

Professional Learning

January- After School PD: Splinter Session, PLT, AND PLWs

January 13th PD - Splinter Session- Grades Pre-K-6 & Special Area: Assessment Literacy and data. Please join Mr. Rosenheim and Ms. Anderson as we explore data protocols to use when delving into the data generated thus far in the school year.
January 20th PD
  • Grades K-2: PLT (topics listed in PLT section below)
  • Grades 3-6: Mrs. Fransko- ICS Co-Teaching Models: Alternative & Team Teaching

January 26th PLW

  • Grades K-3: Ms. Anderson PowerSchool grade book and Standards Based Grading

Professional learning Workshops (PLWs): If anyone has an idea for a PLW or would like to turnkey information to their colleagues, please contact the Elementary Instructional Supervisor, Rachael Anderson at andersonr@krsd.org.

Reminder: These voluntary 1-hour after school workshops may be offered by a teacher or administrative team member. The contents of these workshops center on supplemental topics that enhance classroom instruction and student learning. Participants within these workshops earn 1-Flex hour, while presenters earn 2-Flex hours for both the preparation and presentation of the workshop.

Flex Hours

All information related to flex Hours, can be found on the South Harrison webpage by going to For Staff - Professional Development - and Flex Hours.

  • Please note all flex hour reflection forms should be submitted within five days of a workshop.
  • Requests to use of Flex Hours should be submitted to Laura LaPalomento at Lapalomentol@krsd.org by the designated date.

Independent Study

Teachers have the opportunity to explore topics and receive up to 20 flex hours a year. This includes independent study and options currently available to staff include Fountas and Pinnell benchmark assessment system DVDs and the DVD's available with Calkin's writing program in grades K-2. If you have an idea or area of interest you would like to explore and earn flex hours please see Ms. Anderson.

Job Embedded PD

Teachers have the option of using GLT and PLT to explore topics with their team such as those described above. There are two teacher resources available to work with staff during the school day this year:

ELA: If the topic is ELA related please consider asking Mrs. Travaglini to work with you and can offer and support ELA related topics in your classroom in addition to supporting the implantation of "new" ELA programs material into the classroom.

Digital Literacy: Mrs.Bram is available to work with teachers (and students) and can assist teachers in areas pertaining to digital literacy. Mrs. Bram can also offer teachers a training or a refresher on commonly used programs such as Powerpoint and Word. Please sign up for these weekly periods in Mrs. Bram schedule using the online reservation sign-up page, which will detail the days and periods Mrs.Bram is available to work with you!

PLT Focus

GLTs and PLTs are another form of job embedded professional development and the focus for January's PLT discussion include the following:

  • SGOs: Grade level teams may discuss the data they are collecting and consider any adjustments that need to be made in instruction as a consequence.
  • Preparing for the next MCA: Continue to examine your MCAs in relation to where your students are currently performing and where you expect them to perform at the next MCA.
  • Curricular revisions: As you progress through the year and find units of instruction in need of improvement, please continue to make any needed revisions to curriculum documents that are located on the SH "L" drive in the curriculum 000 folder.
  • Budget: We have begun the budget planning process for this year and teachers are asked to please make time in your discussion s (GLT and PLT) to outline Needs and Wants for next year in terms of curricular items. The curriculum leads will be assisting you in this process and will be asking you for your input.

Reminder: Each PLT will record minutes for the meeting (set up in Google). You may record and organize the minutes however your PLT would like. The following key information should be evident in the meeting minutes: date, attendance, goal(s) for the PLT meetings, progress toward the goal, and the direction for the next meeting.

SGO 2.1 On the Road to Ownership - What now?

Dates to note for SGOs are as follows:

  • October 16, 2015: SGOs are due both hard copy and an electronic copy. COMPLETE
  • February 15, 2016: SGO Revision Deadline
  • March 25, 2016: SGO Process complete (begin preparing for summative meeting)

It is important to continuously revisit SGO goals as your instruction and students progress through the school year using data gained from your formative and summative assessments. Please remember to save sample student evidences for discussion in the spring.

Information and support on Student Growth Objectives (SGOs) can be found on the staff website under For Staff - Evaluations - and SGO Information


January Faculty Meeting Focus - "A Walk in the PARCC"

At the January 6th Faculty meeting, staff will attend a district presentation titled: A Walk in in the PARCC. This presentation will breakdown and examine the PARCC individual score report (ISR), explain how to interpret the PARCC scores, and provide a myriad of PARCC resources for educators.

Model Curriculum Assessments (MCAs)

As you are aware, the Model Curriculum Assessments (MCAs) will be used as a measure to benchmark student progress against the South Harrison curriculum and accompanying grade-level standards.

As a reminder, each MCA must be administered by the assessment deadline and all scores must be submitted on or before the submission deadline.

E/LA & Math Unit 1 MCA: October 21, 2015 (COMPLETE!)

E/LA & Math Unit 2 MCA: December 21, 2015 (COMPLETE!)

E/LA & Math Unit 3 MCA: February 25, 2016

E/LA & Math Unit 4 MCA: April 22, 2016

E/LA & Math Unit 5 MCA: June 17, 2016

For grades K-6 (ELA and math), the common reporting protocol (CRP) document should be sent home within 5 days of the submission deadline to report student progress to parents. As a reminder, all MCA materials (revised assessments, scoring guides, and reporting protocols) have been shared via Google.

For questions regarding MCAs, please contact the Data and Assessment Supervisor, Robert Rosenheim at rosenheimr@krsd.org.

2016 PARCC Testing Schedule (regular administration)

South Harrison Township Elementary School

• ELA (3, 4, 5, 6) and Mathematics (3, 4, 5, 6): May 2nd – May 10th

Test Information:

Testing will last between 80 and 110 minutes each day.

For grades 3-5, the ELA portion is comprised of 3 units and the mathematics portion is comprised of 4 units.

For grade 6, the ELA portion is comprised of 3 units and the mathematics portion is comprised of 3 units.

*PLEASE NOTE: All make-up testing will occur after the regular administration has concluded.

PARCC: Updates and Information

What's New?

• Individual score reports (ISR) for middle school and elementary school students who took the 2014-15 PARCC Assessment were sent home before winter break. At this point, all ISRs have been sent home to parents and students.

• We have added several educator-specific PARCC resources on the district website. You can find these resources on our district website under For Staff – Curriculum & Instruction – and PARCC Resources

Talking Points:

The NJDOE identifies 4 things the assessments are designed to do:

1. Serve as an academic checkup to ensure that students are meeting grade-level expectations and remain on track for the next grade level and ultimately, high school graduation;

2. Help teachers and schools identify students who need support so they can provide additional instruction;

3. Help districts identify persistent achievement gaps so they can identify strategies and allocate resources appropriately; and

4. Help districts measure the effectiveness of their curriculum, interventions, and programs.

The timeline for each component of the 2014-15 PARCC score release is listed below. Please note that the later time-frame for this release is caused by the need to set baseline scoring in the first year of a new test administration. We expect results for subsequent years to be available to parents and educators much earlier.

December 2015: Student-level PARCC score reports released to districts (Middle School, Elementary Schools)

January 2016: PARCC disaggregate data released to districts (High School, Middle School, Elementary Schools)

March 2016: Educator median Student Growth Percentile (mSGP) reports released to districts for use in finalizing 2014-15 evaluations for qualifying educators.

Should you have any specific questions regarding PARCC, please do not hesitate to contact Robert Rosenheim at rosenheimr@krsd.org.

*PLEASE NOTE: The PARCC will only be administered once this school year during the spring.


Patricia Calandro, Chief Academic Officer

Rachael Anderson, Elementary Supervisor K-5

Katie Fransko, Special Education Supervisor PK-12

Stefanie Fox-Manno, Humanities Supervisor 6-12

Robert Rosenheim, Data/Assessment Supervisor K-12

Megan Bruder, STEM Supervisor 6-12

Gail Bram, Curriculum Lead K-3 and Special Areas

Amanda Grabas, Curriculum Lead 4-6 and Special Education

*Please see your curriculum lead with any requests for PD, resources, or other questions/concerns regarding curriculum and instruction