Pella Middle School

March Newsletter

Important Dates

  • 3/31 - 3rd Quarter GRADES published at 4:00

  • 4/2 - No School - Good Friday

  • 4/5-4-9: ISASP Testing - Iowa Statewide Assessments of Student Progress

  • 4/7 - FULL day of School - NO Early Dismissal

  • 4/12 - 4:30 PM School Board Meeting

  • 4/14 - 90 Minute Early Dismissal for PD

  • 4/15 - 12:45 - 3:00 6th Grade Orientation at Pella Middle School

  • 4/16 - 2:15-3:15 - Staff Vs. Students Basketball Game

  • 4/20 - 6th Grade Parent Orientation @ 6:00 PM (6th - 7th grade)

  • 4/21 - 90 Minute Early Dismissal for PD

  • 4/26 - 4:30 PM School Board Meeting

  • 4/28 - 90 Minute Early Dismissal for PD

  • 5/3 - 7th Grade Fishing during PE

  • 5/4 - 8th Grade Fishing during PE

  • 5/5 - Klompen Classic

  • 5/6 - 11:15 Dismissal - Tulip Time (Schedule LINK)

  • 5/7 - 11:15 Dismissal - Tulip Time (Schedule LINK)

  • 5/27 - Final Student Day - Full Day

  • 5/28 - Teacher Workday

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ISASP Testing April 5 - 9

ISASP testing will occur April 5-9, and the students will be taking the assessment on their Chromebooks. Students will be leaving their computers at school on April 1 and during testing week in order to charge nightly.


April 5 - Science test for 8th Grade & 7th grade will register for next year's classes

April 6 - Math Test

April 7 - Reading Test

April 8 - Language Arts/Writing Test

April 9 - Second Writing Test

April 12-16 - Make-up Tests


Tests will be administered from 8:15 - 10:15 daily, These assessments are important as they allow each student, parent, teacher and administrator to assess individual, as well as grade-level, academic progress. The test results also enable us to evaluate how our students fare compared to students from across the state and nation. In addition, scores from these tests are considered when students are selected for special programs such as gifted and talented, enriched/remedial level core classes, intervention courses, and special education.


Federal law mandates that states administer annual exams to measure student achievement. This legislation requires that schools demonstrate significant growth. While the goals and timeline established by the federal government are lofty, by working together, we can meet and exceed their expectations.


I am asking you to discuss the importance of these assessments with your student and assist him/her in approaching the tests with a positive attitude. Also, please make sure your child has plenty of rest and a good breakfast on test days similarly to everyday!


Steps to be successful:


  1. Arriving on time daily is extremely important during these testing dates.
  2. Avoid scheduling appointments during the 8:00-10:30 timeframe.
  3. A good night's sleep is essential.
  4. Nutrition and hydration are always important and just as much this week.
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*Daily ISASP Testing Schedule*

ISASP 8:20 - 10:15 (Testing)

Period 10 10:15 - 10:27 (12)

Period 1 10:30-10:59 (29)

Period 2 11:02 - 11:31 (29)

Period 5 11:34 - 12:03 (29) *8th grade lunch

Period 6 12:06 - 12:35 (29) *7th grade lunch

Period 3 12:38 - 1:07 (29)

Period 4 1:10 - 1:39 (29)

Period 7 1:42 - 2:11 (29)

Period 8 2:14 - 2:43 (29)

Period 9 2:46 - 3:15 (29)
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Iowa Conditions for Learning Survey

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Pella Middle School will administer an annual school climate and culture survey called Conditions for Learning to students in grades seventh and eighth grade. This survey administration is required by the state’s plan to meet a federal law called the Every Student Succeeds Act. Our school will conduct the survey in later in April, and the letter outlining this is below.


Pella Middle School Iowa Conditions for Learning Survey LINK
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The only time success comes before work is in the dictionary.

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Alex Demuth Qualifies for the Mathcounts State Competition

Congratulations to Alex Demuth on advancing to the Mathcounts State Competition! To qualify for the State Competition, Alex had to be one of the five highest-scoring students from their chapter or be among the next ten highest-scoring students from the state after each chapter’s top five were identified. The State Competition took place Thursday March 25th; what an accomplishment by Alex!

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Cupcake Wars Prove to be another BIG Hit!

Consumer FCS students recently participated in a friendly Cupcake Wars competition among classes. The winners are as follows:

Most Creative: There was a tie between 9th hour's "Willy Wonka" group (Luke VanderBeek, Rex Rhamy, & Hunter DeVries) and 9th hour's "Sword in the Stone" group (Emerson Wogen, Justin Lee, & Josie Boll)

Best Flavor: 7th Hour's "Up" cupcake made by Briar Trunnel, Meav Swank, Nora Paxton, Kaitlyn Flory, & Naomi Dunsbergen

Best Presentation: 7th Hour's "Beauty & The Beast" cupcake made by Jocelyn Lunsford, Katie Scheckel, Anna Wick, Evelyn Munk, & Katelyn Pogue

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3rd Quarter Reward and Reinforcement Day was a Success!

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Students and staff played games while Mr. Brown was able to balance 3 ping pong balls; impressive!

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PE Classes Scale the Rock Wall

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Students vs. Staff Dodgeball was a Nail Biter!

Pella MS Student Council Hosts first Staff Vs. Students Dodgeball Competition

It was Students vs. Staff in a Middle School Dodgeball Tournament that won't soon be forgotten!

Like any great movie, it came down to the final moments of the championship game -a true nail-biter! Staff came back in the last few minutes of the game-outnumbered 5 to 2 and pulled off a victory, thanks to our final two heroes Carrie Blommers and Amy Belding!

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Pella CSD Embarks upon The 7 Habits & The Leader in Me and we need your help!

As we develop plans for the future, we need your input. Over the next three years, we will be asking for more intentional supports as well as providing families and our community with learning, but this Spring we need your insights using our MRA assessment. MRA stands for Measurable Results Assessment, so please watch for that in the upcoming weeks, and please consider providing us your valuable thoughts. Thank you!
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Nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.

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The Counselor Connection

ISASP testing is next week, here are some ways to help your student prepare and maximize their potential.

  • Learn relaxation techniques. To help you stay calm and confident right before and during the test, perform relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, relaxing your muscles one at a time, or closing your eyes and imagining a positive outcome.

  • Don't forget to eat and drink. Your brain needs fuel to function. Eat a healthy breakfast the day of the test and drink plenty of water. Avoid sugary drinks such as soda pop, which can cause your blood sugar to peak and then drop, or caffeinated beverages such as energy drinks or coffee, which can increase anxiety.

  • Get some exercise. Regular aerobic exercise, and exercising on exam day, can release tension.

  • Get plenty of sleep. Sleep is directly related to academic performance. Preteens and teenagers especially need to get regular, solid sleep. But adults need a good night's sleep, too, for optimal work performance.

Sincerely,

Jourdan Van Wyk, School Counselor

jourdan.vanwyk@pellaschools.org

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