ENSC Parent Notes

November 18, 2013

An Evening of Music and Fun

Saturday night, I had dinner at the Pizza Forum with a group of ENHS students and their families. While we may not have sat together at one table and shared conversation, it certainly felt like an evening with close friends. When the jazz band began to play, I felt like we were a part of a private concert listening to future jazz stars. I enjoyed the evening and a big thank you to Pizza Forum for their generous donation to the band program.

Whenever I attend an ENSC student event, whether it is an athletic event, a music event, elementary, secondary, etc. I am reminded of the outstanding students we have and the many parents and community members who support our students and their programs. It is very humbling to be among these many amazing people and to be able to say I am a part of ENSC. Thank you all.

East Noble Middle School

The first of three ENMS community input meetings was held last Thursday. Attendance was sparse; however, those who did attend provided us with valuable input and ideas. Most seemed to understand there are many challenges with the current building that need to be addressed. They discussed the benefits of remaining in the same location and also the benefits of locating a new building some place where there is more land.

Two more meetings are scheduled for Monday at Rome City Elementary and Tuesday at Avilla Elementary. Both meetings will begin at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday night during the Board meeting, I will be giving a summary of the meetings and community input.

If you know of community members, parents, students, etc. who would like information, please let me know. I will meet with them individually, small groups, large groups, etc. I can be contacted at alinson@eastnoble.net or 260-347-2502.

2014-2015 School Calendar

There continues to be talk about the 2014-2015 calendar. A potential calendar will be presented to the School Board at this week's meeting. When discussion began, the initial plan was to have two weeks for fall break; however, after listening to families and staff, fall break is proposed as just one week. The following is being proposed for the calendar.

  • First Student Day - Thursday, August 7 (four school days earlier than last year)
  • Friday, October 3 - Teacher In-Service
  • Fall Break - Friday, October 3 through Friday, October 10.
  • Thanksgiving break - Wednesday, November 26 - Friday, November 28
  • Winter Break - Monday, December 22 - Friday, January 2
  • Presidents Day - February 16 will be a snow make up day
  • Spring Break - Monday, March 23 - Friday, April 3
  • May 8, 15, and 22 - Snow Make Up days (historically, ENSC averages 5 weather cancellation days per year)
  • Last Student Day - Wednesday, June 3 (same as this school year)

School Board Meeting

This week's School Board meeting will be held at South Side Elementary and begin at 6 p.m. Agenda items include a South Side presentation over Class Dojo; action on the 2014-2015 school calendar; approval of administrator raises, and a summary of the ENMS meetings.

If you want to speak at the meeting or know someone who does, you may sign up before the meeting begins. When speaking, you have three minutes and the Board does not respond. They do take your comments under advisement when making their decisions.

This Week's Super Hero is North Side Elementary's Angie Sibert

North Side would like to recognize Angie Sibert as our Hero of the Week. Angie has been a teacher in East Noble School Corporation for 14 years teaching both 2nd and 3rd grades at North Side. Angie has an unmatched enthusiasm for learning and sharing this compassion for learning with her students. Angie is always looking at her instruction and critiquing herself in order to provide the best for her students on a daily basis. Angie has embraced the 1:1 technology within her classroom and has served as a presenter for many of the Knight Time Summer Tech Sessions held by the district. In addition, she actively pursues grants which benefit all of the students at North Side in order to maintain their academic levels.

Angie is the wife of Steve and the proud mother of two children that attend North Side, Kane and Taylor. She loves spending time with her children, water sports, planting flowers and shopping for shoes as well as reading

Websites Worth a Look

2013 Must Read K-12 Blogs - http://tinyurl.com/mgwe4go

How to Understand Anything Using The Inquiry Process: edut.to/1fHMeZH

Understanding by Design: Essential Questions: http://tinyurl.com/ny2dueh


Have a great week.


Building and Curriculum Notes

Curriculum Notes- From Becca

ISTEP and ECA Changes Already In Progress

This week, I went to a presentation by Schauna Findlay. She currently works for Goodwill Industries but many of you will remember that she was previously the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum for the DOE. I have worked with Schauna in one capacity or another for the past thirteen years. I regard her as one of top authorities in education curriculum and am always amazed at her knowledge set.

The purpose of this presentation was to discuss what schools should be doing during the Common Core pause. Her response was continue to move forward. The ISTEP and ECA test this year will already have significant changes and there are more changes already set for next year’s tests, also. One example of this was the reading passage on last year’s ECA was at an 1100 Lexile – far higher than in the past. We also have access to published instructional documents that clearly inform teachers and parents what standards and skills will be covered on this year’s tests. Now, I am not advocating that we teach to the test, but it would be silly to ignore these glaring spotlights that are brightly shining and showing us the direction that we need to be heading.

To locate your grade level documents follow this link:


Go to the Toolboxes in English and Math and locate the transition documents for your grade level. Within these document,t the DOE is clearly telling all us the priorities for instruction. Here is an example of transparency in the third grade document.

IAS for instruction (not aligned to INCC that will be assessed on ISTEP+)

IAS 3.1.1 Know and use more difficult word families (-ight) when reading unfamiliar words.

I will make this analogy of this information. Some of us like wandering the countryside to get to a new destination but it generally takes longer and uses more gas. However, those who use a map generally arrive on time with less energy usage.

North Side Elementary

On Wednesday, North Side celebrated Veterans Day by not only honoring the men and women who have faithfully served our country, but also the many military dogs whose strength and courage have saved the lives of many service members. The Director of Chapter 3 of the United States War Dogs Association, John Meeks, provided students with pictures and stories of a few of those dogs. He also told us a story near and dear to his heart of the military dog that saved his life twice while serving in the Vietnam War. John also brought along his dog Bear, who modeled some of the gear that military dogs wear when in service. They included “doggles” which are goggles they wear to protect their eyes and a cooling vest to help regulate their body temperature when in the desert and other very hot locations. With the preparation of Mr. Swartzlander before the program and the guidance of Mr. Johnston during the program, the North Side Band played “My Country Tis of Thee” followed by the rest of the 6th grade students singing “God Bless the USA” accompanied by Miss Opliger. A big thanks goes out to all of the students and staff who helped make this opportunity possible for our students.

The fifth grade students at North Side are participating in the Energizing Indiana School Education Program. The program provides a unique hands on approach to teach the importance of Earth’s natural resources, and how these resources relate to water and energy that we use every day. Students who completed a home survey were given an energy saving kit. The students are learning ways to conserve water and energy through at home activities using the following tools: a high efficiency showerhead, CFL light bulbs, a kitchen faucet aerator, a digital thermometer, a filter alarm and a LED night light that were included within each kit. Students are challenged to complete the student workbook activities and record their data. Classroom lessons are centered around the earth’s resources, energy and conservation at home through the habits we create in using energy and water. We hope our students are taking home the message that together we can do powerful things. Many connections have already been made to the energy saving habits we use at North Side.

Rome City Elementary

Veterans Day is a time for students to learn about and celebrate veterans. The convocation at Rome City Elementary Monday morning was a great way for us to honor veterans in Rome City. Many students shared poems, stories, and songs with veterans. Thank you to all who have served our country!

Wednesday we celebrated our Character Counts students of the month. These students are invited to eat lunch with the principal, who provides snacks for the students. Not only does lunch encourage these students to continue to show great character, but it is also an incentive for other students to want to do the same.

Thursday night was the second, in a series of 6, First Grade Take Home Nights. First grade students and parents were taught 2 comprehension games. They were provided with books to read, the materials for the games, candy to play the games with, and a snack to eat while playing. The goal of each of these nights is to help parents learn about fun ways to work with their children at home along with making parents comfortable with the school and teachers. This night is relaxed and enjoyable for everyone involved

South Side Elementary

This has been a week for veterans and active duty service men and women at South Side Elementary School. We began the week with a Veteran’s Day flag raising ceremony, hosting over 30 veteran guests and their families in our building. Leading up to this day, South Side participated in the “Jeans for Troops” campaign, raising $145 for the G.I. Go Fund, an organization that provides assistance to all military veterans by helping them find employment, housing, and maximizing their education and health benefits. Our National Elementary Honor Society sponsored a “Hiking for Heroes” drive to build military care packages to send to troops currently serving overseas just in time for the Holidays. To top it all off, South Side students set a goal to read 25,000 pages this week to support the Honor Flight Read-a-thon sponsored by the High School Interact Club who is raising money to take WWII Veterans to see their memorial in Washington D.C. The final numbers are not in yet, but the preliminary count looks good! We are so proud of our kids for their hard work this week in honoring our heroes.

East Noble Middle School

East Noble Middle School started the week off like many school’s around the country on Monday with a Veterans Day program. Our National Junior Honor Society did a fantastic job with planning this program. Veterans were treated to a breakfast brought in by the middle school staff and served by some of our students. Following this our choir and band also performed for our Veterans; along with a few NJHS students reading poems and inspirational messages. Thank you to Sarah Ackerman, Sara Stein, and Kaitlyn Parks for planning this great tribute to our guests.

This week the middle school also had visitors from Northridge Middle School come and spend the day with our 7th grade social studies teachers, Nate Toles and Cliff Hannon. Our visitors wanted to see how our SS teachers were incorporating technology into their classroom and daily lessons. After sitting down and discussing our technology with them we realized how advanced our district is with the use of technology.

Our middle school stepped up to the call this week to help those in need around our East Noble community. Orizon Real Estate is doing their annual Thanksgiving basket brigade and have a record number of families in need. Once the middle school family found out about this it took minutes for over 10 individuals, clubs, academic teams, and sports teams to step up and help.

Meetings began this week to discuss the future of the middle school building. Many staff members attended the meeting at the middle school on Thursday night. The middle school staff is excited about the future prospect of a new building but realize it is not the building that will push our students to maximize their potential. Regardless of what the future is for the building the middle school staff will continue to foster the most productive and enjoyable environment for our students.

East Noble High School

Despite it being a final exam day with a Monday morning collaboration late start, East Noble High School proudly took the time to put on a Veteran’s Day Program. Several students under the leadership of Matt Rickey worked countless hours behind the scenes to continue the tradition of celebrating our veterans. Veterans from the community were welcomed. Senior Jake Peterson began the program by asking everyone in the audience to reflect, “What does a soldier’s sacrifice mean to you?”

East Noble students Brandon Joest, Lauren Butler, and Josh Ogle all sang beautifully and with a passion that brought tears to many eyes. The band performed the Armed Forces Medley, and the veterans in attendance stood proudly as they heard the music from their branch of service.

Speaker Gene Cogan spoke of his service, being shot twice, at Omaha Beach on D-day. In 2011, Cogan traveled to France to attend the 60th anniversary of D-Day. He later received the French Legion of Honor Award, which he brought to show our students.

Our school and community have a great amount of pride in our Veterans and the sacrifice they have made for our freedom. It is an EN tradition that our students and community take seriously, and we are proud to take the time to honor their efforts.

Wayne Center Elementary

The Wayne Center Student Council has been busy collecting and counting cans and boxes of food for the food drive this week. In one week, they collected more than 1,200 items (600 pounds of food) for the Friendship Food Pantry. Good job, Wayne Center families and Student Council, for providing food to those in need!

The Preschoolers have been learning about the upcoming November holiday, Thanksgiving. This week they have been looking at pictures, reading stories, making crafts, and playing games related to Native Americans. Next week, they will learn more about the Pilgrims and their famous journey on the Mayflower, which brought them to America.

Veteran’s Day was celebrated on November 11th with the Annual Wayne Center Veteran’s Day Program. Led by Ms. Gandy, the Sixth Grade Band, Wayne Center Music Makers, and a large group of students sang, danced, and gave speeches, to pay tribute to veterans both near and far. A number of veterans were in attendance; some of whom participated in the program by giving a talk about what it meant to be a vet. The veterans also demonstrated a flag-folding ceremony complete with a commentary on what each fold signified. Students and staff participated in a wreath ceremony; living and deceased family members were recognized for their service in the military. This lively and informative ceremony was well received by the students and guests in attendance.

Students also learned about Veteran’s Day through classroom activities. For example, students in Mrs. Onion’s room wrote reflections on Veteran’s Day. This day has meaning to them because of the opportunities they’ve had to learn about this reverent day.

Avilla Elementary

This past week the 6th grade band students played for a full house under the direction of Mr. Robert Smith. This year, the band consists of 33 very talented members. The families were treated to several songs that show the progression, from one note to many notes, the students have been making since August. The students’ favorite song to play is the “2 Note Boogie”. This particular song was written by Mr. Smith in college.

Former Avilla Panther and current East Noble Knight Amber Maxwell started the night off with the National Anthem. Amber did an outstanding job just like she did three years ago when she opened the band concert as a 6th grader. She then played with the band throughout the concert. It was very nice to see one of OUR own come back and visit.

Thursday and Friday after school OUR students had the opportunity to dance! Wii Dance Night took place for only a $1 donation to OUR Basket Brigade families that WE have adopted this year. A very special thanks goes out to Katie Mullins of the Kendallville Library for making this happen. We had over 100 students attend and donated around $100 for perishable items for OUR Baskets. What a great way to celebrate doing a great deed for OUR community.

Alternative Learning Center

As the new Trimester started we welcomed 14 new faces to the ALC. Most are off to a great start and the staff is excited to see how many credits will be earned this Tri. Speaking of credits, two have already been earned. Truth be told, most of the work for those credits was performed first Tri but the credits have been completed since Tuesday so they will count as the first 2 credits of Tri 2. The credit count for the year now stands at an even 90! We have a couple of students that should be completing their graduation requirements in the next few weeks. Stay tuned to Weekly Notes to find out the identity of those students so you can congratulate them. In addition to welcoming 14 new faces, we are saying good-bye to one of our middle school students. We wish him well as he returns to ENMS.