Sigler Elementary Monday Memo

Week of April 13th


Our theme at Sigler Elementary this year is "connecting". Each week we will capture images of our Sigler Community connecting in four vital areas; curriculum, community, students and staff. We will showcase the images below for all to enjoy and remind ourselves of the power of a connectivity!

What are People Saying about the Staff and Students at Sigler Elementary

As the Principal at Sigler Elementary, folks are always commenting on how great our staff and students are and I wanted to share those statements with you!

Interviews have commenced for the 2015-2016 school year and its awesome when potential teachers walk in the door and say positive things about our students, school and staff.

"The staff here is so nice. They made me feel right at home."

"The building looks amazing. Seeing the student work in the halls made me feel at home."

"The staff at Sigler is the type of staff you want students to be surrounded by."

Has someone shared something with you about our students and/or staff? Please share so we can highlight it!

Sigler Parents - Join REMIND & never miss announcements from Sigler Elementary

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Sigler Elementary Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Initiative

Sigler Elementary BYOD Initiative - Bring Your Own Device

Staff Spotlight - Meet Ms. Suma Das - 3rd Grade Teacher

Meet Ms. Das - 3rd Grade Teacher

I was born in India and graduated from University of Delhi with a major in English Literature. I moved to the U.K. soon after graduating, and met my husband in London. A few years later we moved to Canada where my daughter was born. We moved to Sherman, TX in 1989 and I taught in the Sherman Schools. I earned a Master’s in Education from Texas A & M, Commerce in 1996.I have been teaching for the past twenty three years with eighteen wonderful years at Sigler, where I have enjoyed working with great teams!

PISD Summer 2015 Training - Presenters Needed

Join Us for #GoogleEduOnAir

Join us for #GoogleEduOnAir - A free online conference and learn with other educators.

May 8th & 9th

Click here to register - #GoogleEduOnAir

Check out the Hashtag #eduin30 for a weekly reflective question from George Couros

This week the specific hashtag is #eduin30w6.

Each week @gcouros posts a 30 second video on Twitter including a question to stop and make us reflect upon our job as educators.

This week's question:

What do you believe about education? Challenge a practice or trend in education.

Share your 30 second response to #EDUin30w6

I challenge you to check it out! Feel free to take it one step further and respond to his question by posting a 30 second video response of your own.

AVID - Advancement Via Individual Determination

Each week we are going to highlight an AVID strategy that you can incorporate into your routine in the classroom or parents can discuss with students at home.

Every now and then I am able to share a great blog post by Craig Mckinney, an AVID teacher in Plano ISD. His latest post was a great reminder of the importance of having fun!

A day without laughter is like a prom without music. A bowl of milk with no Cap'n Crunch. A birthday party with no guests. A classroom without laughter is a barren wasteland of dull, lifeless mental inactivity.

This thought of mine was confirmed by a blog post I read today that explores the link between laughter and learning. The author, Sarah Henderson, maintains that laughter and levity increase student retention of content, and she offers compelling evidence to support her point.

For many teachers, that's great news that confirms everything they've believed and tried to practice daily in classrooms around the world. For others, that's scary news. Not everyone is naturally funny. We can't all be Tina Fey, Mindy Kaling, Jimmy Fallon, Chris Rock, Ben Stiller, Jerry Seinfeld, Wanda Sykes, David Sedaris, or Miranda Sings (look her up).

So what can the not-funny among us do to inject some wit into our classrooms?

Here are a few simple suggestions that are easily implementable by even the most humor-challenged among us:

Whimsical Classroom Traditions: Establishing a few lighthearted routines in your classroom can infuse some vitality into the most lifeless of educational environments. Doing this has the added bonus of creating a classroom community and building memorable bonds with your students. In my classroom, for instance, we've instituted the tradition of the "Clappy Birthday" song. Inspired by minimalist composer Steve Reich, this alternative to the tone-deaf drudgery of the usual singing of "Happy birthday to you" replaces the singing with clapping; we clap the song in rhythm in honor of the birthday girl or boy. The kids get a kick out of this and remind us when we forget to observe birthdays in this silly and unusual method. Another example of this is evidenced by the sign in the front of my classroom that reads, "Oh, queso." This was inspired by the ubiquitous public speaking habit of beginning a presentation with the filler phrase, "Okay, so...." When students present in front of the class, we take great joy in catching them in this speech tic, and the students are quick to point out when their teacher slips and makes a similar mistake. Just yesterday, a group of former students visited after school and remarked (fondly) how the "Oh, queso" reminder has stuck with them.

Corny Jokes: In her blog, Sarah Henderson gives the caveat that only relevant humor has the effect of increasing student retention of learned material. In other words, just telling jokes about off-topic subjects may be fun, but it doesn't help the kids learn. My frequently hilarious teaching partner, Linda, is a master of the corny history joke. She's renowned among the students for sharing groaners about the material they're studying in class. Why did Julius Caesar buy crayons? He wanted to Mark Antony. Where did Montezuma go to college? Az Tech. How was the Roman Empire divided? With a pair of Caesars.The students may grimace when she tells these, but they remember them. I still recall a terrible joke my Pre-Cal teacher, Mr. Bernard. told us about "putting Descartes before the horse" way back in the 80s. Clearly, there's something to be said for digging out a few jokes to liven up your lectures. A simple Google search will turn up more jokes than you'll know what to do with about whatever subject you teach.

Let the Kids Be Funny: Kids are about a thousand times more funny than least to one another. Give your students opportunities to share their wit in content-related classroom activities. Yesterday, the aforementioned master teacher, Linda, came up with a brilliant and enjoyable way to debrief a history chapter. She divided the students into groups and assigned each group a song title and a fictitious musical group who would perform the song: "Please China, Won't You Convert?" by the Missionaries; "Bye-Bye Mongols" by the Ming; "Sorry to Plague You" by Black Death; "You Got Cotton, We Got Sugar" by Diffusion; "Revival" by Renaissance; and several others. The students' task was to choose a tune, write a song with their assigned title that showed what they learned in the reading, and then perform the songs for the class. We laughed all day long at the groups' hilarious renditions of these soon-to-be chart toppers. And our students reinforced what they learned in the chapter in a way that will stick for much longer than might occur from a less jovial lesson.

If you're stuck in a rut of deadly serious instruction, give some of these ideas a whirl.

What's the worst thing that can happen? Your students might laugh at you? At least they're laughing.

For more information about AVID, staff can find the AVID folder on the shared drive: Sigler: AVID

Week of April 13th - Reminders - National Library Week

Sigler PTA Spring Fundraiser Continues This Week - Coupon Books - $20 - Hundreds in Savings

Peeps Be Flying Challenge - We have the Peeps, you build a catapult to send them Flying! Classrooms can begin working now and we will continue to work until the Peeps have flown home. We want to know how far your Peeps fly!

Click Here for Details - Peeps Be Flyin'

Monday, April 13th

  • STAAR Training - Grades 3rd-5th - Planning Time
  • Rosetta Stone - Parent Class - 10AM - Sigler Elementary
  • 3 o'clock rocks today - Students need to be picked up at 4PM - Last Session
  • PTA Board Meeting - Library 6PM

Tuesday, April 14th

Future's Day/College Day - Students and staff are encouraged to wear their favorite college shirt with jeans or dress up for the future they want to have every Tuesday at Sigler Elementary.

  • 2nd Grade Field Trip - Perot Museum
  • Sigler Store is Open Today During Recess
  • Coding Club Today - Students need to be picked up at 4PM
  • Soccer Club Today - Students need to be picked up at 4PM

Wednesday, April 15th

  • SMU Teacher Preparations Classes - Conference Room - 8AM-12PM
  • Team Planning Following Dismissal
  • Soccer Club Today - Students need to be picked up at 4PM
  • 5th Grade Celebration Planning Meeting - 6PM - 5th Grade Hallway

Thursday, April 16th

  • Thursday Twitter Task - This week is National Library Week - Send @j9dowdy a tweet this week letting her know we appreciate her! Be sure to include the hashtag #siglerlearns. Complete this Twitter Task and wear jeans today!
  • 1st Grade Kid Talks - 11:30AM
  • 2nd Grade Kid Talks - 12:50PM
  • STOMP - Students need to be picked up at 4PM

Friday, April 17th

  • Show Your School Spirit - Wear Your Sigler Spiritwear
  • BE4's/CMIT - Teachers w/ BL and ESL Students - Planning Times - Conference Room
  • Sigler PTA - Movie Night - 6PM - Big Hero 6

Next Week at Sigler Elementary

Monday, April 20th

Peeps Be Flyin' Challenge Continues - Click Here - Peeps Be Flyin'

5th Grade STAAR - Math - No Visitors Today for Lunch

Tuesday, April 21st

3rd & 4th Grade STAAR - Math - No Visitors Today for Lunch

Wednesday, April 22nd

Administrative Professional's Day

3rd & 4th Grade STAAR - Reading

5th Grade STAAR - Science - No Visitors Today for Lunch

Team Planning Following Dismissal

Thursday, April 23rd

Incoming Kindergarten Parents - Sneak Peak into KN at Sigler Elementary - 5:30PM - KN Hallway

Friday, April 24th

All Pro Dad's Day - 7:15AM

Sigler PTA Movie Night

Friday, April 17th, 6pm

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Join us for a night at the movies! Sigler PTA will be selling your favorite movie treats and giving families the opportunity to spend time together.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

All Pro Dad's Day

Friday, April 24th, 7am

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Come and enjoy breakfast with your son/daughter along with other families while spending time sharing how proud you are of your child or children.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

Multicultural Night - 1st Grade Music Performance

Thursday, May 7th, 6pm

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Field Day

Friday, May 15th, 8am

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Volunteers are needed for a Super Hero Field Day!

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

Sigler Elementary - Celebrating 50 Years

Thursday, May 28th, 6pm

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Come join the staff of Sigler Elementary as we host a reception circa 1964-1965 to celebrate the memories created over the last 50 years.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

5th Grade End of Year Party

Tuesday, June 2nd, 3pm

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Help us celebrate the final days of being a 5th grade student at Sigler Elementary.

The Sigler Elementary will provide pizza, drinks, cookies and of course, music!

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

Kindergarten End of Year Song Celebration

Wednesday, June 3rd, 1:30pm

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

join us to celebrate the end of Kindergarten at Sigler Elementary

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

End of Year - Class Parties

Thursday, June 4th, 1:45pm

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Class parties will be held to celebrate a wonderful school year at Sigler Elementary.

3rd Grade's Class Party will be held at 12:45 - All other parties will be at 1:45.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

5th Grade Celebration

Thursday, June 4th, 6pm

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

Our 5th graders are recognized for their accomplishments at Sigler Elementary as they transition to middle school and 6th grade.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

Last Day of School - Noon Dismissal

Friday, June 5th, 8am

1400 Janwood Drive

Plano, TX

We made it! Congratulations on a successful 2014-2015 school year Sigler Stars!

Come and celebrate with our end of year assembly at 8:30AM.

Our final day is an early release - noon dismissal.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.