Huddle Up

An Achievable Dream Academy Volume 1, Issue 2 Sept 2016

Week of Sept 19-Sept 23

Tuesday
  • Bus Evacuation Drill
Thursday
  • K-5 Progress Reports Go Home

Featured Story: Adapting Morning Meeting: Speech and Anxiety Needs

Morning Meeting is a powerful way to start the day. It meets students’ needs for belonging, significance, and fun; provides students with an opportunity to practice social and emotional skills; and prepares students for the days’ learning.

When we have students in our classrooms with specific speech or anxiety needs, it can feel challenging to help them feel successful during Morning Meeting. If you have a student in your classroom who needs support with speaking during Morning Meeting, try one of these ideas that I and other teachers have found helpful:


  • Assign them a buddy, someone who will speak for the student. This strategy worked really well for Harris. Harris had come into my classroom with a buddy already assigned and we slowly built his support system to include two other trusted classmates.
  • Invite the student to draw what they will share about during Morning Meeting. The drawing can serve as their way of participating in an around the circle or dialogue share. As the student becomes more comfortable holding their drawing during share, encourage them to add a word to their drawing and continue to build on that as they become more comfortable sharing in this way.
  • Record the student sharing using video or audio. This can be done at home with the help and support of the parents or at school; wherever the student is most comfortable. This strategy worked well for Harris later in the school year when we would use audio recordings as a means for his voice to be heard.
  • Use a social story as a strategy to prepare the student for greeting others or sharing during Morning Meetings. Speech and Language Therapists and school psychologists are an excellent resource for these!
  • Help the student plan their share – meet with them, ask open-ended questions, and jot down their ideas for sharing. This strategy worked really well for Ada. She would bring her plan to Morning Meeting and sit next to me to provide her with additional support while she verbally shared. -- excerpt from Responsive Classroom

Picture Playback

Training Camp

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    • K-2 Chromebook, Now What?, Sept. 26 4:00-6:00 pm, Discovery STEM Academy
    • Experience the 5th Grade iSTEM Challenge, Sept. 26 4:30-6:30 pm, SSC PD Room
    • K-5 Kids Can Code Too! Developing Critical Thinkers Using Games, Sept. 26-Oct. 3 Online (asynchronous), Oct. 4 Face-to-Face 4:30-6:30 pm, Admin. Bldg. Warwick Conf. Room
    • K-5 Understanding Our Teacher Development and Evaluation Process, Sept. 26 4:00-6:00 pm, Admin. Bldg. Conf. Rooms 1 & 2
    • 3-5 Writer's Workshop: The Nuts and Bolts, Sept. 27 and Oct. 4 4:00-6:00 pm, Richneck ES
    • K-1 Engage, Energize & Educate Emergent Readers, Sept. 28 4:30-6:30 pm, SSC PD Room
    • Grades 4 and 5 New Teacher Check-In, Sept. 28 4:30-6:00 pm, Admin. Bldg. Auditorium
    • Grades 5 NASA Spotlites: Shining a Light on Science Misconceptions, Sept. 29 4:15-5:45 pm, Admin. Bldg. Auditorium

    Tailgating with Celebrations

    • Kudos to Ms. Foster for using her positive, loving and magical tactics to redirect one of her scholars who was having a rough start to his day!

    • Kudos to Admin and “friends” for the Italian Ice treats on that very hot Wednesday.

    • I would like to thank the entire Reading/Math Support Staff for doing an awesome job during the week of Staff Professional Development. I enjoyed the sessions, and wanted to let you all know that I appreciate your ideas, suggestions, strategies, and experiences! You all rock!! Thanks for your hard work and your dedication to all of us! You are appreciated!
    • Kudos to Ms. Smothers for decorating the upstairs bathrooms. The students appreciate it and are motivated to "keep it nice."

    • Katie Horvath for sitting down and brainstorming strategies to help a struggling dreamer.

    • Kudos to Ms. Hernandez for the “gentle reminder” for our summative meeting.
    • Kudos to Ms. Cross for brainstorming with the walker team to find a way to help one of her students be successful in the walker line. She obviously cares about her students beyond the classroom door!
    • Ms. Savage for taking the time to look at interventions and supports to help a dreamer be as successful as he can be.

    • Mrs. Hopkins for keeping the lines of communication open.

    • The administrative team for their hard work and dedication.

    • A special shout out to Mrs. Coleman, Ms. Smothers, and Mrs. Bordino for the assistance I have and continuing to receive from them as I venture through another phase! I am so grateful for your support! Thanks so much!

    • The 2nd grade team for brainstorming ideas and collaborative conversations.

    • When I needed you to take a few students across to the tennis center, you did not hesitate to step right in. THANK YOU ANGE MOORE!

    • Kudos to Ms. Richardson for helping us to “unpack” and make better sense of our Literacy curriculum.
    • Ms. Polanco’s fifth graders have been consistently engaged in learning activities that will ready them for the upcoming school year. Ms. Polanco demonstrates a strong understanding of the curriculum, differentiation, while providing a nurturing environment for her students. Diaundra Polanco is doing her part to ensure that AADA becomes a Premiere Title I School of Distinction!
    • THANK YOU, Related Arts Team, for being at your duty stations, picking up, and dropping off students ON TIME! Coach Fox, Ms. Billingsley said she really appreciated you helping out with putting up board work as well! Coach Mason, thank you for explaining to your students the importance good hallway behavior and rewarding them with tickets! You all ROCK!!!

    • Shout out to Ms. Collier for doing an awesome job during Huddle with our Fourth Graders! Thank you for stepping in!!! You rock!!
    • Kudos to the Tennis Coaches for the Design Challenge given to the 5th grade students. Students used gym equipment to create their teacher’s names.
    Awesome job everyone (kindergarten team) on creating activities that will help our Dreamers reach their goals!

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