Bartlett Staff (Friday Focus)

Week of October 28-November 3, 2017

Peek at the Week

MONDAY: Monday Staff Meeting

TUESDAY: TGIPD hosted by our ELA Dept; Geek Squad Mtg; Basketball/Soccer @ Bartlett;

WEDNESDAY: Minimum Day; Students will be released at 12:45 p.m.; PUSD Summit at Monache HS from 1:30-3:50 p.m.

THURSDAY: Spelling Bee Mtg; Basketball/Soccer @ Bartlett; Cadet Presentation (7th Grade Only) @ MPR at 2:00 p.m.; Bobcat Choir Fall Concert @ MPR 6:30-7:30 p.m.

FRIDAY: CJSF Mtg; Youth Summit Day (7th Grade Only) @ Port Naz; Bobcat Pride Day; Freaky Friday

Please encourage our students to support our canned food drive being organized by Mr. Santos and the CSJF club to help families in need have a great Thanksgiving!

Bobcat News Video of the Week featuring the following: PUSD's Pathways Academy of Engineering & Resource Occupation at Porterville HIgh School; Interview with Social Studies Teacher Mr. Gutierrez; and Porterville Community College!
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Instructional Coach's Corner (Relationship Building)

Today, October 27th, we celebrate the life and legacy of the late Educator's Dr. Rita F. Pierson's birthday. It's profound how she continues to inspire New and Veteran Teachers alike with her call that "Every Child Deserves a Champion." Viewing any of her recordings or reading through her publications you will notice that building relationships is at the core of her beliefs as an Educator. "No significant learning," she stated quoting James Comer, "can occur without a significant relationship." In remembrance of Rita, this issue focuses on this important value of connecting.

Relationships first.

Relationships second.

Relationships always.

When I first started teaching at Barlett MS, on day one I went over the syllabus. On day two I went straight to content and covering our first essential standard. Huge mistake. I thought that by going fast that I would go far because I had so many standards to cover in one semester which is how we used to teach Social Studies and Science here.

The second time I had an opportunity to start my US and World History courses, I focused on relationship building first and foremost. I had learned that if I focus on really getting to know my Students including their life experiences, funds of knowledge, and needs then getting them to connect to the content would be much more easier. Moreover, we practiced routines which although took time in the beginning ended up paying off in the long run. I also let them know that every decision I was going to make throughout the semester would be made out of a place of caring and wanting each of them to succeed.

As such, I started the course by going over my own Life History, where I grew up, and some of the challenges I had faced in life but managed to get back up from and move forward stronger and more grateful for life. Most importantly, I went over how education has afforded me and my family many opportunities including being able to come out of poverty and give back. Then I facilitated Class Building activities in which Students got an opportunity to get to know each other. Lastly, each of my Students did an About Me activity in which they were able to share their interests, needs, and life stories with me.

Later through the years I developed a Personal Timeline Project. This was one of my all time favorite activities to launch the academic year in my History classes because there were so many learning gems. Of course this was a great way for my Students to understand History related objectives such as learning vocabulary terms and skills like chronology, B.C, sequencing events, dating, etc. It was also a great way for me to get to really know each of my Student's personal histories. I also loved this Activity because I would ask Students to draw their "future" timeline - i.e., what they expect will happen in the rest of their lives. I wanted Middle Schoolers to start thinking about their future goals and visualize their lives beyond say what they are going to do for lunch LOL. This exercise most importantly emphasized "about how our lives are not just driven by the force of past events, but also pulled forward by our expectations and plans for the future."

It has warmed my heart to see how our amazing History Department (Mr. Santos, Ms. Duong, & Mr. Santos) have taken this Personal Timeline Project and either digitized it using Google Drawings and Google Classroom or inspired our Students to create timelines within visual representations that reflect them as individuals. Who says you can't build relationships and our Students' academic abilities and skills simultaneously.

One of the biggest lessons I learned from my initial teaching mistake was about the importance of building relationships and connecting with my Students' hopes and dreams and in turn motivating them to connect with History. I am so grateful to be at Bartlett with fellow Educators who have this same core value. Thank you Teachers, Staff, and Admin for everything you do both in and outside of the classroom to build relationships and in turn build our Students up to move them forward.

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PUSD Summit (Fall 2017)

For those who are new to PUSD we offer a PUSD Summit three times an academic year in which our District's Secondary Teachers have the opportunity to choose a professional development session of their choice. Our fall summit will be this Wed, Nov 1st, from 1:30-3:50 p.m. at Monache High School. I'm so excited that there will be a range of sessions offered from

  • Writing from sources
  • Using technology to ensure 100% participation
  • Using Big Ideas Math Online resources
  • Explain Everything App for iPads
  • Learn the difference between Nearpod & Peardeck
  • Building your own Illuminate assessments
  • Beginner Google Classroom
  • Adobe Premier
  • Adobe Photo Shop
  • Writing in Mathematics
  • Total Participation Techniques (TPTs) and Higher Order Thinking (HOT)
  • Growth Mindset & Neuroplasticity
  • Cooperative Learning and high Depth of Knowledge (DOK)
  • Using Informational Text in non-ELA classrooms to increase levels of thinking
  • Developing speaking and writing for ELLs
  • Special Education Cohort
  • Overview of CDE and CTE Indicator Requirements
  • New Teacher Cohort
  • Music Cohort
  • Working with students who have severe social & emotional issues
  • Classroom Management 101

Ken Spencer, our Director of Curriculum & Instruction, recently sent out an email to all Teachers via Sched so that you can sign up for a session. If you haven't received an email let me know as soon as possible. Please note that each session has a limited capacity so make sure you sign up soon. This is a powerful way of offering professional development rooted in choice, covering a range of topics important to us as Educators, and facilitated by Teachers, Math Coaches, Instructional Coaches, Media Specialists, Administrators, District Psychologists, District Office Coordinators, Pathways Director, etc.

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Sometimes the best tech tip we can give is no tech and to put our devices away to cultivate true human to human connection.
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Academic Word of the Week

This week's word is FUNCTION which is a noun. FUNCTION means "the thing that something is supposed to do." You hear this word frequently in math and science. For example: The FUNCTION of the heart is to pump blood to all the organs in our body. Listen for this word throughout this week.