Dolphin Dispatch

Week of January 18, 2016

A Word From Ms. Haynes

Dear Welleby Family,

I hope that you have been able to relax this weekend and for those of you who found a way to be of service today, I commend you. As a child, I was very inspired by Dr. King and grew up reciting his "I Have a Dream" speech countless times in church. Even now, I am moved by his simple message that transcends race relations. Dr. King's message of judging others by the content of their character is applicable in our world today as we look at gender equality, sexuality issues, disability acceptance, religious differences and the like. We need to look at the actions of an individual to see where they really stand. More importantly, we don't need a "day" to be of service--we should be of service in our daily walk each and every day of our lives.

Our mid-year assessments are underway for grades 3-5. Please be mindful of the emails from Ms. Atelus regarding procedures. Once final data is available, we will begin our data conversations with teachers (including special teachers regarding their intervention support) as we listen to your plan of action in response to your student's progress.

Don't forget to stop by during your planning or after school this week to finalize your 2014-15 final evaluation with administration. The email has specific details regarding the procedures. Also, please pay close attention to an upcoming email from Mr. Favata regarding the submission of lesson plans.

Have an AMAZING week!!

Website of the Week: Songza

Continuing to play on the 20 Strategies to Engage the Brain from Dr. Tate, I found this blog post that I pinned some time ago about music in the classroom. She has a great explanation about why she doesn't use Pandora (some artists are not so "similar" to what you select). This is the blog post by the 3rd grade teacher: Glitter in Third.

Here is the link to the actual Songza website. Please keep in mind that I have not vetted this site. I try to stay up to date on various things, but it's impossible to view them all. If anyone finds the site to be useful (or not) after trying, PLEASE share that with your colleagues. We need to create a progressive culture of moving forward and learning from each other.

The Week Ahead

No Name Calling Week: January 19-22

January 18th
  • NO SCHOOL: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

January 19th
  • Health Screenings: K, 1st, and 3rd

January 20th
  • Health Screenings: K, 1st, and 3rd
  • Science Assessment: 5th Grade
  • Report Cards Due (Haynes: K-2; Favata 3-5)
  • PLC Meetings
  • Welleby Warriors: 2:45PM
  • Menchie's Day

January 21st
  • 5th Grade to Westpine Middle
  • Media Center Closed: Training session for select teachers

January 22nd
  • Dolphin Depot Day (3rd-5th grades)
  • Science Assessment: 5th Grade

Calendar Events Subject to Change

From Good to GREAT....Technology Accelerators

One of the last pieces in From Good to GREAT covers technology (interesting considering how we are just weeks away from receiving our technology). As we think about using technology in our classrooms and school, we should view it as an accelerator, not a creator of momentum. We shouldn't use the technology just to use it, but use those things that directly tie in to our Hedgehog Concept---remember that three circle Venn Diagram where we are linking into where we need to narrow our focus?

It will be a shame to have the additional computers in our classrooms, but the work the students are doing on them do not tie in to where we need to put our focus. As you think about the additional technology you are getting, think about the systems you will have in place (the processes and procedures). It should be for more than just taking an AR test, more than just compliantly completing i-Ready lessons. How can your students increase their depth of knowledge in all academic areas through the use of technology at your grade level? How can we TRULY move toward becoming a 21st Century School?

You have to find a way to put the technology to work FOR you, not the other way around. We are quickly moving to a more technologically advanced society--we have to educate ourselves on how to make technology relevant. Given the opportunity, you will be amazed at what your students can do. We definitely have to figure out how to make computer science a part of our core values--students as young as kindergarten can learn coding. We need to develop and nurture that--creating a true passion for STEM based learning.

Words to Live By

Kudos to you!

Thank you to the teachers whose classrooms we visited on our Learning Walks during Leadership Team meeting. Team leaders were able to learn much about the process of observations as well as learn from visiting the classrooms of their colleagues.

This will be an ongoing practice designed to strengthen our knowledge base, gain new ideas and insights from each other, and to offer constructive feedback to help each other with their instructional practice.

To learn more about Learning Walks and see a video that was shared with the Leadership Team, please view the link below.

Coming Soon....

January 25th
  • Class Picture Day
  • Math Assessments: Grades 3-5

January 26th
  • SAC Meeting: 8:00AM to 9:30AM (please encourage your parents to attend)
  • ELA Assessments: Grade 5

January 27th
  • ELA Assessments: Grade 5
  • RTI Meetings
  • 1st Grade Field Trip: Butterfly World
  • PLC Meeting: Whole School in Media Center for Val-Ed Survey

January 28th
  • ELA Assessments: Grades 3 and 4
  • Report Cards Issued

January 29th
  • ELA Assessments: Grades 3 and 4

Calendar Events Subject to Change

Laughter is the Best Medicine

Welleby Elementary School

"The Welleby Elementary Community ignites a passion for learning to achieve academic excellence for lifelong learners."