West Harrison's Monthly Newsletter
Mrs. Julie Trepa
Though it may feel as if we just started school, we have already passed midterms and are approaching the end of the first quarter on October 24th! Time flies when you are having fun! We will be hosting Parent-Teacher Conferences on November 4th and 5th. This can be an anxious time for students and parents alike, but it doesn’t have to be! It should be a time to celebrate. Celebrate the successes your child has experienced and encourage them in the areas in which they might be struggling. A key ingredient to a student’s success in school is communication between the student, their parent(s) and their teacher(s). Parent-Teacher Conferences are one tool in which we can partner for the betterment of our students. So, how can you, as a parent, get the most out of conferences?
Prepare ahead of time. What would you like the teacher to know about your child that they may not know? Write these down so you don’t forget to share it in the moment! What helps your child be successful at home? Share that with their teacher, so that we can build upon your child’s strengths. Be sure to look up your child’s grades, any missing assignments your child may have had or absences listed on the parent portal. That way, you already have the basic information and you can concentrate on meaningful conversations with the teacher(s), instead of fact finding items.
Ask Questions. What questions do you have about the curriculum being taught? Jot down questions you want to be sure to ask. Do you have questions about the information you looked up ahead of time? Ask what you can do to assist your student at home. Find out what the teacher sees as your child’s strengths in the classroom and what they may need to work on to reach their greatest potential.
Create a Plan. Whether you create this plan with the teacher, with your child, or both, determine what your next steps will be to help your child be successful in school. What will the teacher be working on next with your child? How do you plan to support your child at home? How will your child be responsible for their success?
Stay in Touch. Even the best laid plans don’t always pan out, so be sure to reach out to your child’s teacher if something isn’t working or if you have questions that arise afterward. Is something going well? Reach out to the teacher to share the successes too! Be sure you are signed up to receive West Harrison notifications on your mobile device, in order to receive the most recent West Harrison news! If you don’t have our App yet, just download it for free from our website (the app is supported by both Apple and Android devices). When we work together, we can be sure your child will have the best year ever!
Mrs. Casey Ring
I cannot believe how quickly the beginning of the year has gone! We have flown past the midterm and are approaching the end of the first quarter on October 24th. As a district, school is in full swing. We had a fun, successful Homecoming week from September 30-October 4. As someone new to the district, I really enjoyed seeing the traditions and spirit throughout the week. Thank you to all who made the week memorable for our students!
In the elementary, our teachers are digging into the tough job of teaching just as our students are digging into the tough job of learning. Encouraging a growth mindset for both adults and kids is of utmost importance; it helps us to see that mistakes promote more learning and effort trumps talent every time. Teachers completed FAST testing in reading and math in September and will share that information with parents and guardians soon and/or during conferences. Our elementary is such a bright place, full of smiles and learning--it is a true highlight of my day.
In the middle and high school, I am loving the opportunity to get to know students more and more. Building relationships with our students is so crucial to me; I feel it is vital for teens to know how to voice their opinion and ask questions in a respectful and proper manner. For them to know my door is open and I will take their concerns seriously and respectfully is important to me. I have been meeting with the high school student council monthly to give an opportunity for the student body to ask questions, get clarification, and advise me with questions or ideas I may have. Encourage your teen(s) to learn the proper way to ask questions and become involved in the school in any and every way. These are some of the most important life skills of all.
Flu season is among us!
West Harrison Community School is offering a flu clinic October 18, 2019 beginning at 7:30a.m for Students and Staff. The cost is $25 and is free for Student’s who have Medicaid or Hawk-I insurance coverage. Most Private Insurance cover the cost of the flu shot (you will be responsible to submit a claim). Forms can be obtained on the school web page under documents. Forms need to be turned in no later than 10/15/2018 by the end of the school day.
Why should people get vaccinated against the flu?
Influenza is a potentially serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death. Every flu season is different, and influenza infection can affect people differently, but millions of people get the flu every year, hundreds of thousands of people are hospitalized and thousands or tens of thousands of people die from flu-related causes every year. An annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to help protect against flu. Vaccination has been shown to have many benefits including reducing the risk of flu illnesses, hospitalizations and even the risk of flu-related death in children. For more information visit why you should get vaccinated against the flu visit https://www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/keyfacts.htm.
Reminder to Parents Regarding Medication at School
Please update the nurse with any student allergies each year.
You can reach me, Deb Evans, at 712-646-2231 or firstname.lastname@example.org
School Counseling Update:
Elementary students are learning important social and academic skills throughout the year through elementary lessons using the second step curriculum. The students have been learning how to be successful learners in the classroom, with adults, and with peers through such skills as:active listening, focusing attention, self-talk, and assertiveness. These skills provide the foundation for the rest of the year. Empathy and Respect are also incorporated themes throughout the year as we focus on new skills.
The 6th grade has been learning about career exploration. There is a focus on what interests, skills, and values they have and how that aligns with different careers. They also get an overview of career clusters (group of related careers) and career paths.
Seniors Checklist for the beginning of the year include:
Considering post secondary plans: two or four year colleges, technical trade schools, military, or the workforce. Determine your area of interest.
Applying to any college or trade program. October is the national college application month.
October 1st: FAFSA (financial aid form for colleges and scholarships) is available.
October 21st: ICAN is providing a day at WH free to you to have someone fill it out for you, sign up with Mrs. Marshall.
Some of the colleges, including Iowa State and Iowa, have a December 1st deadline to get the most financial aid package
Consider if you need to retake the ACT in December
Applying for college specific scholarships. Some colleges such as Iowa State and Iowa have scholarship deadlines for college scholarship applications of December 1st.
Apply for local scholarships that include a few in S1, and the most during December-June.
Mrs. BreAnn Marshall, School Counselor
TeamMates Mentoring Program- We Want You!
The West Harrison School district is in its fifth year of their TeamMates mentoring program. We will be one of over 170 chapters in Nebraska and Iowa.
The program’s mission is to positively impact the world by inspiring youth to reach their full potential through mentoring.
We are looking for men and women of any career and experience to be mentors to West Harrison students. Our program will be focusing on the 4th through 9th graders and will expand from there. You can get information at teammates.org. If interested please contact me at school (712-646-2231) or email (email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org)
Tony Nunez, PresidentKim Nunez, Program Coordinator
BEHAVIOR AT SPORTING EVENTS
In an effort to maintain a SAFE and orderly environment at our home sporting events, so that ALL fans can enjoy the games, the West Harrison School District is asking parents to please help us in our effort by reviewing these expectations with their students before they attend a game.
· All students through 8th grade are encouraged to enter the game with an adult.
· All students must be seated during the game. Do not wander around or go outside.
· Concessions are available at all sporting events. After going to the concession stand, students should return to their seat.
· No footballs, soccer balls, kick balls, etc. are allowed when attending football games or events in the gym. They will be confiscated by game supervisors. There is also no ball playing, tag games, etc. allowed at any sporting event.
Always exhibit good sportsmanship:
Be respectful during the National Anthem, school song, and player introductions.
Never boo or yell at officials or opposing players
Cheer for the Hawkeye players
Represent West Harrison in a positive manner
Be respectful of other students and adults attending the game
Remember, you should be going to the game to watch the game.
Mr. Tony Nunez, Athletic Director
Elementary Special Education with Mrs. Schaben
For those of you who don’t know me, I am Bailey Schaben. This is my third year of teaching at West Harrison, as one of the elementary special education teachers. I graduated from Iowa State University with a degree in elementary education and special education. My husband, Josh and I live outside of Turin, Iowa. We have five dogs that keep us very busy. In my free time, I enjoy being outdoors, and spending time with my family.
As a special education teacher, I serve students in grades Kindergarten through 6th grade in a variety of areas. My students and I have been very busy this past month. We have been learning many new concepts and reviewing some old ones. They also have been adjusting to being back at school and following classroom expectations. We have been working on improving our individual skills in the areas of reading, math, writing, and behaviors. Each individual has been working very hard on their Individualized Education Program (IEP) goals. All of my students have just completed the fall FAST assessment window, or the fall Iowa Alternate Assessment window. We will continue to work on improving our scores in all areas.
Later this month, several students and I will be attending a fall field trip to the pumpkin patch. We are looking forward to it. I also have several students who are participating in Special Olympics this year. We will begin preparing and practicing for our upcoming events. We will be participating in Basketball, Bocce, and Athletics this year.
I am looking forward to another great year at West Harrison!
What's Happening in Kindergarten?
Hello everyone! For those of you who do not know me, I am Holly Brock, the new kindergarten teacher here at West Harrison. This will be my second year of teaching and I am so excited for the upcoming year. As a former graduate of Boyer Valley High School, the West Harrison School District has made me feel right at home with welcoming staff and community members. Being a smaller district means that students have the opportunity to build better relationships with teachers and that’s where learning begins; with a solid connection with the teacher. If students cannot trust their teacher and others around them, then they might not be willing to open up and try something new. This is very important especially at a young age such as kindergarten. I always encourage students that it is okay to make mistakes because that is how we all learn together. As long as we do not give up and keep trying, even if help is needed!
So far this year has been full of learning with both academics and expectations! In literacy, the students have been working on letter identification and sounds, writing letters both uppercase and lowercase, and learning concepts of print and sight words which are both skills that will enhance their abilities to start reading books. In math, we have been practicing our numbers 0-10 on how to write them and build them using a manipulative such as counters or blocks. We have also been practicing more/fewer, which can be a difficult topic to grasp. In science, we have learned about how to share information with others and how to ask questions. This upcoming week will be our first unit of social studies and we will be learning about different types of rules and behaviors.
I cannot wait to watch my new group of students grow this year. We have so much more to learn with many fun, exciting, and engaging activities to complete. This is going to be the best year ever!
During science, kindergarteners use magnifying glasses to observe seashells and rocks.
Family and Consumer Science
The school year has begun, and the Family and Consumer Science Department is ready for the “Best Year Ever”. The FCS classes offered first semester at West Harrison are Child Development, Food and Nutrition, Interior Design/Housing, Clothing/Textiles and FCS Exploratory.
The highlights in Child Development are the “Reality Babies” and working with the preschool students on Fridays. The Reality Baby is an infant simulator that allows the student to demonstrate the full-time commitment required of the caregiver of a new infant. Food and Nutrition is preparing and taste testing the different recipes with quality assurance, and food safety as a priority is always a crowd favorite with the students. Housing/Interior Design class started the year learning and applying the various elements of design. The curriculum allows the students to prepare different projects to apply their knowledge of the concepts. The favorite project is designing their “Tiny Houses”. Clothing and Textile class is busy learning to use and operate the embroidery machine. The students will continue to improve their sewing skills with the sewing machine.
FCCLA is off to a great start. Interest continues to grow in FCCLA; we have twenty-six members. FCCLA members finished a very successful fundraiser and would like to thank the staff and communities for supporting our program. This fundraiser allows all West Harrison high school students the opportunity to participate in local, district, state, and national FCCLA activities for free. The students are looking forward to our district meeting, which will be on October 30 in Glenwood. Plans are being made to sign up for Peer Ed projects and STAR events. The students will begin preparing their STAR events and will present them in January. West Harrison FCCLA looks forward to continuing our success in STAR events and qualifying for national competition. We are so proud to have a national qualifier the last five years. Pressure is on to continue our tradition.
Bonnie Fegenbush, Family and Consumer Science Teacher, FCCLA Advisor