All-Star Announcements

What's Happening at Venable, January 2019

The background for this month's newsletter shows some of our 4th grade All-Stars during their winter chorus concert on December 17. Many people commented that this year's concert was the best and most special that they'd heard. Thank you 3rd and 4th grade families, teachers, and Mr. Salvatierra, for sharing your gifts and talents with our community.

Upcoming Events in January

Monday, January 7
  • School resumes in 2019!

Thursday, January 12

  • Prospective Parent Tour, 9:15am-10:15am

Friday, January 11

  • School-wide Lock-down Drill (#4)

Monday, January 14

  • PTO Meeting, 6pm in the library (presentation and Q&A about gifted education)
Tuesday, January 15
  • iSTEM/Math Night, 5:30pm (dinner provided by PTO)
Friday, January 18
  • End of 2nd Quarter
  • Early Release (12pm) for Professional Learning. Lunch IS provided to students.
Monday, Tuesday, January 21-22
  • No school for students (MLK holiday and teacher workday)

Wednesday, January 23-Friday, January 25

  • MAP testing in reading & math for grades 2-4
Thursday, January 24
  • 4th grade to Paramount, 9:45am (Phantom Tollbooth)
  • 2nd grade to Paramount, 11:45am (Phantom Tollbooth)
Friday, January 25
  • School-wide Morning Meeting, 8:05am
  • 3rd grade to Paramount, 11:30am (Phantom Tollbooth)
Monday, January 28
  • Walker School counselors visit 4th grade classrooms for introductions
  • EBL Resumes

Thursday, January 31

  • Report Cards sent home (please return envelope with parent signature)
Friday, February 1
  • Bingo Night, 5:30pm in the gym
Friday, February 15

  • Soul Fest

PTO Presentation--Gifted Education, Jan. 14

At the PTO meeting in November, a number of topics were brainstormed for future presentations to the group. In light of conversations around equity in our school division and the role of the gifted education program, we will have a brief presentation by Bev Catlin, our division's coordinator for gifted education. Ms. Catlin will cover topics such as the laws governing gifted education, the history of the program in the division, and discussions currently taking place about gifted education. Mrs. Cartwright and Dr. Kershner will also be on hand to discuss gifted education at Venable. Please join us at 6:00pm in the library on Monday, January 14 for PTO business followed by this presentation.

iSTEM/Math Night, Jan. 15

Ready to put your engineering thinking caps on? Join us for a variety of problem-solving activities and good family fun on Tuesday, January 15 for iSTEM/Math night. Learn about the kinds of inquiries students are making in the lab and different games you can play at home to reinforce foundational math concepts. With a new math curriculum this year, we hope you'll come out to learn about the ways students are engaging with mathematical studies. We are structuring the evening a little differently this year. Stations and activities will begin at 5:30, with dinner afterwards. Thank you to the PTO for providing pizza, veggies, and paper products for this event.

Mid-year Assessments

January 18 marks the end of our 2nd grading period, and the weeks on either side of that date are reserved for mid-year assessments. We will administer the MAP assessments in both reading and math to grades 2-4. First graders will take the CogAT assessment toward the end of the month (parents will receive more information in a letter), and all students will have spelling/phonemic awareness and reading fluency assessments. Kindergarten and 1st graders will also be assessed on number sense in mathematics. The reading fluency and math assessments are administered 1:1. Our reading team (Ms. Shelton, Ms. Scholl, and Ms. Penniman) will administer the assessments to students in order to help complete them within the designated time frame; they will also assist with CogAT testing and will be attending a division-wide training on January 23-24. This means that reading groups normally held by members of this team will be on hold until January 28. Thank you for your understanding.

Golden Apple Nominations Due at End of Month

Please consider nominating a Venable teacher for the annual Golden Apple Award. This is a wonderful way to show the community how amazing our staff is and to express appreciation for specific things that teachers are doing to engage and empower our students. Nominations are due February 4, and should be submitted directly to Dr. Kershner.

Venable Playground Fund

In December, the PTO launched a campaign to add new elements to our playgrounds. The elements are designed to help deter drainage problems and increase the fun options for students of all abilities. Thank you to the parents and staff members who have already contributed to this fun. We hope to reach our goal in time to purchase and install new equipment over the summer. If you haven't already, please check out the link below to find out how you can contribute and vote for your favorite components.
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Thank you to our holiday and book fairies!

A heartfelt thanks goes to Venable Cares and all the families who helped provide grocery store gift cards for families and books for students. We were able to provide two book fair books for students in K-2 and a larger book for students in 3rd and 4th grade thanks to the generous donations we received. PreK students received books as well from a preK grant. We gave each family who participated in Toy Lift up to two grocery cards to help defray food costs over the winter break.