Bear Tracks

Weekly information for Bear Tavern - January 8, 2016

Our Time is NOW...

Note from the Principal

Happy Friday Bear Tavern Staff,

Welcome back! As much as being back from break is an adjustment, it has been really great to reconnect with the students and faculty over the past few days.

Popping around to classrooms, it became clear that we are already back in full swing and the school is humming. Just today, in fact, my head was swirling, in the best possible way with information and ideas. The day started with some really incredible ideas coming from the Character Committee regarding Den Group activities for later in January and for the rest of the year and beyond. We have only scratched the surface of the amazing things that we can do given the current format. There must have been 20 great ideas. For the majority of the morning and early afternoon, I had appointments and small meetings or discussions. Then I had a conversation with a really great teacher, which gave me a lot to think about (Thanks Leigh). From there it was off the to the board office for a meeting that directly preceded the announcement of the Teacher of the Year (CONGRATULATIONS LIZ).

The reason I share all of this is because there was a lot of input for my brain today. But, the reality is that that is how it is most days - for me, for you and most of all, for our students. We have SO many great activities, ideas, discussions and so much information swirling around us every day. Be sure to set aside some time to just think - to let it all sink in and to make meaning of what we see, hear and learn each day. There are two articles of the week this week, because they are both short and both really great resources for MINDFULNESS (that is the academic buzzword for 'thinking'). I like them because they highlight ways that infusing mindfulness can be really helpful for adults AND children. They are definitely worth a read and worth thinking about incorporating into your routine.

Taking the extra time to process the information around us AND being open to feedback and ideas (even sometimes when it is tough to hear or think) is exactly how we improve and get even better at what we are doing. Constant reflection and self-evaluation helps us to pursue greatness in ourselves and for our school.

Thank you for all that you do. It has been a great first week back. Let's keep it up!

We have a lot of good announcements in the reminders and upcoming dates section, so please take a look.




Special Reminders & Upcoming Dates

Information & Reminders:

Cold Weather Plan - We have had great luck with a warm winter so far, but got a bit of a scare this week with some of the trailers (BIG HIGH FIVE TO MAINTENANCE FOR WORKING SO QUICKLY). In the event of the heat not working properly or it being just too cold in a trailer, we will have a plan for relocation. Please take a look - it might involve your classroom or space during a planning period. Let me know if you have any questions. The plan represents the worst case scenario; we may be able to relocate without using the whole thing, but just be ready - I'll communicate anytime we implement it. I hope we don't have to! CLICK HERE FOR PLAN

Recreation Games - We utilized our Den Groups before winter break and I wanted to get some input and feedback, as we had discussed, to help me be more informed moving forward. I would like to sincerely thank everyone for giving it a try and keeping an open mind. Now I would like to see how it affected our students and our classrooms and weigh the pros and cons of the format in which we used. CLICK HERE FOR SHORT SURVEY.

Rosters - Please take a look at Mr. Suozzo's email from January 6th to make sure that your rosters are correct in OnCourse as we begin the report card process. We will have trainings and support, but it is important that all teachers double check their rosters and 'graded' teachers make sure that their grade books are up and running in OnCourse. Let me know if you have any questions.


Saturday 1/9 - Saturday Enrichment starts

Monday 1/11 - Grade Level Meetings

Monday 1/11 - School Assembly (Winter Concert)

Tuesday 1/12 - Winter Concert Rehearsal at the PAC

Tuesday 1/12 - Winter Concert 7 pm

Wednesday 1/13 - Jump Rope Assembly AM in gym 3-5 8:45 am / PreK-2 10 am

Friday 1/15 - Pre K to Laundromat

Saturday 1/16 - Saturday Enrichment

Monday 1/18 - School Closed MLK Jr. Day

Wednesday 1/20 - PTO Meeting

Wednesday 1/20 - Faculty Meeting

Tuesday 1/26 - 90 minute Contracted Meeting

Thursday 1/28 - DEN GROUPS (Special Schedule AM)

Welcome Jessica Prawetz

Jessica will be our Title I Writing Support Teacher and is Kim Evans's former student teacher. Jessica will be supporting writing classes in grades 3-5. Let's make her feel welcome!


Liz was named the Bear Tavern Governor's Teacher of the Year for 2015-16. We are excited for Liz and very proud of her.

Quote of the Week:

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Article of the Week:

Two articles, but they are very much related - check them out!

Tweet of the Week (to highlight great ideas & people to follow)

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Tech Tip of the Week