San Vicente School Weekly Bulletin
A Professional Learning Community-- December 1-Dec 10
Year's end is neither an end nor a beginning but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us. - Hal Borland
November is halfway over and Thanksgiving break is just around the corner. I would like to wish everyone a restful break and all of the warmth that our families bring at this time of year.
For the past two weeks of November, teachers have worked tirelessly in teaching their students. Additionally, report card conferences were held virtually. Thank you to all of our families for attending conferences and supporting your students and their teachers.
For the month of November, I continue to recognize fifth-grade teacher, Ms. Mayra Salas. Ms. Salas continues to work in tandem with her grade level colleagues ensuring that all students succeed both emotionally and academically. Thank you for your hard work and undying dedication to your students. I am grateful to you.
Next, I would like to thank Mr. Pantoja and his team of teachers who made it possible to secure a memorial bench in the name of our dear colleague, Mr. Paul Hutton. Additionally, I would like to thank our parents for their donation of a tree in Mr. Hutton's name. You are always in our hearts and your spirit fills our school with unforgettable memories. You have left us with your best friend and cherished team member, Mrs. Cristina Hutton. Her love for you is ever-present in the way that she interacts with our students and staff. We love you, Mrs. Hutton. Rest in peace our dear colleague.
Finally, I would like to thank the district, board members, and members of my team for remembering those of us who served. On November 10th, 2021 Marines celebrated their 246th birthday. In the Marine Corps, we have a saying, "Semper Fidelis," which means always faithful. Happy Birthday my brothers and sisters in the Marine Corps. A special shout out to Captain Pedro Gomez and Gunnery Sergeant Walter Tinay. Thank you for your service, my brothers. To all the others who have served and are still serving, we will always remember your efforts and what it means to have such a beautiful nation. President Javier Galvan, I would like to thank you personally, for your expression of gratitude at our last board meeting. Your words will resonate with me always. I want to thank you for your many years of service to our community. Semper Fidelis to you and the force.
Dr. Bailey USMC Veteran of Foreign War. SEMPER FI!
First Grade Recognition Assembly! Way to Go Panthers!
LCAP Goals 4 and 5 (Community and Family Engagement/High Quality Staff)
Employee of the Month of November- Fifth Grade Teacher Ms. Mayra Salas
Semper Fidelis Captain Gomez!
Thank you for your service and thank you for your outstanding work with our NJROTC!
Dr. Bailey USMC Veteran's Day Recognition
Thank you to the district and the board for recognizing me. Semper Fidelis!
Fellow Marine and Community Partner Gunnery Sergeant Tinay
Happy Veteran's Day. Thank you for your service Officer Tinay! Semper Fidelis!
Thank you for keeping our school and our community safe.
Semper Fidelis Captain Gomez!
Dr. Bailey USMC Veteran's Day Recognition
Safety (LCAP Goal 3)
Food for Thought (LCAP Goal 2) (Edutopia)
Helping Students Reacclimate to Being With Others All Day
Many students are still a little overwhelmed at being around their peers, though they’re also excited. Some simple strategies can help them adjust to being back in school.
November 4, 2021
Spencer Grant / Alamy Stock Photo
The start of the 2021–22 school year has been rough. Students across the world are experiencing “broken belongings”—a detachment from others—as the pandemic created conditions of relative isolation and a significant amount of chronic unpredictability within communities and home environments during the past 20 months.
We can observe this detachment in student behaviors, which are signals of a nervous system dysregulated by often toxic levels of stress. Our schools are being challenged to return to some type of normalcy even as we move through the third academic year of a global pandemic. The social loss our students are carrying is palpable.
Two mornings and afternoons a week, I am co-teaching in seventh-grade classrooms in a large middle school, and as I walk down Hallway B, I feel the tension in the air. As a staff, we are wondering how to reclaim feelings of safety and connection so that sustainable learning can occur. The nervous system is social, and has plasticity, but we require safety and a sense of belonging to access the frontal regions of the brain that hold our abilities to problem-solve, pay attention, emotionally regulate, and thoughtfully respond, which we all need to feel competent, autonomous, and motivated.
The destructive TikTok challenges that have gone viral in many of our secondary schools, accompanied by defiance and destruction of school property, are behaviors that demonstrate how distorted belonging feels better to students than the isolation of the recent past—these highly irrational challenges are often driven by the developmental need for attachment to others.
We need to harness students’ energy and attachment to each other, and follow the nature of the child. Our seventh-grade team has been meeting to cultivate ways we can begin to rebuild trust and connection through our procedures with the increase of predictability, safety, and relational conditions. We are and will be continuing to integrate these practices at the beginning and end of classes and during transitions.
FOCUSING STUDENTS’ FEELINGS OF ATTACHMENT PRODUCTIVELY
Board games: We are setting up board game days twice a month in our advisory classes in our middle schools, and two times a week in the elementary schools, integrating these times within our procedures and setting up station rotations where students move from Battleship to Guess Who, Operation, Connect Four, and many other games focusing on cooperation, collaboration attention and fun. The goal here is to have students rotate to different games and different partners to relearn how to be with one another without technology.
We will not be using our Chromebooks or phones as we set up group norms—through discussions with the students—to establish expectations and predictability:
- What does cooperation look like?
- How do we disagree?
- What are the best ways to move from station to station?
- The focus is not on winning but on collaboration and inclusion. What will this look like?
Creative expression: When we draw, journal, and create with free-style art mediums, we can express beliefs, feelings and sensations of pain, hurt, disappointment and loss, creating images of these emotions and conditions. This kind of expression can help students share their unique identities through language, beliefs, and cultural celebrations, which schools often misunderstand because they come from social and cultural norms and values of a community different from the social and cultural norms and values of the school.
FOCUSED ATTENTION PRACTICES
Focused attention practices require connection with others as they help prepare our nervous systems for a state of calm alertness. We integrate these practices throughout our procedures, providing practices that deepen collaboration and empathy.
Dedicate This One: In this focused attention practice, students create an image or write a few words that they want to share about someone they appreciate. As they think of this person, they breathe deeply for one minute, sharing their love and hopes through images or words of gratitude and comfort. They then have the option of sharing their dedication with a partner.
Sharing Worries and Celebrations: Students write down or draw a worry, problem, or even a celebration they want to share. Folding up the paper, they hand it off to a partner. Partners then respond to one another with an image or words. Before implementing this practice, we need to discuss agreements and trust within our classroom, and doing this activity should always be a choice.
Coregulating With Your Partner: Have a student choose a partner. Without talking, one student should find a rhythm in their breathing, body percussion, or drumming on the desk, and see if their partner can match the pattern. Then they can change it up as the other person takes the lead.
Mirror Me: In this coregulatory practice, one partner creates a pattern of body movements—such as a jumping jack followed by squatting or arm movements—that the other person will mirror back. It’s fun for students to speed up and slow down these movements to see how closely their partner can follow. Students in each pair take turns leading.
Dual Drawing and Journaling: In this coregulatory practice, partners share a sheet of paper for one to two minutes. When the time starts, one partner draws a line or shape and then passes it to the other person so they can add a line or a shape; they continue to do this for the set time period without talking to one another. When the time is up, they can talk about what they drew together, giving it a title and any description that feels appropriate to both of them.
In a variation on this, students can use the same pattern with dual journaling or storytelling. For the set time period, students pass a sheet of paper back and forth, contributing a sentence or two at a time to create a story together. The teacher can provide prompts about places, objects, or other themes so that students can connect their stories to what they’re learning or to each other. They may write about their similarities, differences, interests, or passions.
Compassion for others draws upon brain networks for empathy, and when these networks are activated, we develop the nervous system states that cultivate kindness—and kindness is the most therapeutic practice for transformational change.
Parent Corner (LCAP GOAL 4)
URGENT: Please be sure to drop your students off and pick them up in front of the school. If you are late or if you need to pick up your students early, please check in with the front office. Please help us to keep our campus safe by coming to the office for assistance. We appreciate all that you do for our kids but our campus is currently closed to parents in an effort to keep our students and staff safe.
Thank you for attending your child's parent-teacher conferences this week. Please get involved in our ELAC and School Site Council meetings. We need your input to assist in the ongoing task of helping our students grow socially and academically.
REMINDER: Please assist us in making sure that you make use of our upper parking lot before and after school. It is dangerous for our students when parents park their cars in the front parking lot as the driveway gets congested and backs up on Metz Road.
I am requesting your continued support with the following: Please assist your student(s) in filling out their COVID questionnaire each day before sending your students' to school. There is a link available on our district website. Thank you.
Next, please continue to check-in on ClassDojo, Seesaw, and Google Classroom regularly to ensure that you are receiving current news and information about your child's/children's class(es) from their teacher(s).
PLEASE NOTE: Our office hours are from 7:45-4:30 pm.
Please do not hesitate to reach out to us for assistance and support! We are here for you!
Finally, please continue to check our school's website, Facebook page, and school marquee regularly for updates and upcoming events. We value your input and our kids thrive from partnerships.
Thank you for supporting our school!