Staff Memo

May 14, 2016

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Introducing New Second Grade Teacher Michelle Brummett

My name is Michelle Brummett. I grew up in Kenosha, WI but have become a proud Hoosier living here the past 4 years. I have a BA in psychology from Indiana University as well as a MA in Teaching from Marian University.


I have taught kindergarten in IPS for 2 years. My husband is a firefighter/paramedic in Noblesville and we live in Indianapolis with our dog, Zona (named after the great state of Arizona where my husband and I met), and our 2 cats. I love to bike and swim and will be completing my second triathlon this summer. I am so excited to be joining Cumberland Road next year!

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End of Year Angst

Imagine you've had some kind of trauma in your life. Imagine bonding is tough for you and trust is difficult. Imagine most people are talking about how excited they are that the end of the school year is near. Imagine that somewhere inside of you at some subconscious level, you are dreading the end of the year. The job of breaking a bond that was tough to establish causes pain. Thinking of the unknowns of summer doesn't cause joy. Imagine.


Each of you have several students in your classroom that fit this description. None of what is going on may be anything they can name. Often when bonds are going to change or be broken, kids act out even more in order to push you away. In their minds, if their relationship with you is ending or changing and you are "mad" at them, then it is easier to leave because you are mad at them anyway.


The dynamics in your classroom change when it gets to be May. Students that might not have caused many behavior problems are now doing things they don't normally do. You give them your attention only to turn around and find something else that needs your attention. It's a bit like Whack-a-Mole.

It's easy to get frustrated and feel like everything is the kids' fault. We blame them. We blame parents. We're tired. In fact, we're exhausted.

It's important to step back and think for a minute. What is happening inside that child? What feelings are cropping up that even the child can't name? How can you give grace at a time when it feels almost impossible?


Using language like, "I know you feel sad/angry/upset/frustrated right now. I understand that. I feel a little anxious right now because soon I'm going to have to say good-bye to you for the summer. That makes me sad. I want you to know that you will always be my special ____(insert name)___. I will always be your ___ grade teacher. Always. You will always be special _____ grade student. That will never change."


I think I've told this story before, but when one of our kids had been with us for 5-6 months, he turned to his pre-school teacher and said forlornly, "I think it's time for me to go." His wonderful teacher, Miss Paula, replied, "What do you mean? Where are you going?" He replied, "To a new home." His behavior had been horrible. He had been in trouble all the time.


Miss Paula stopped him in his tracks and told him this, "Your family is your forever family. You will always be with them. Your mom will always be your mom. Your dad will always be your dad. You aren't going anywhere."


She called me that day with such sadness in her voice. I listened and could hardly swallow. Can you imagine that a little five-year-old boy had been living with the dreadful idea that he would be moving to yet another home? How can a child carry something like that?


At this time of year, we don't know what is going on inside our children's hearts or lives. Our job is to work with tenderness, gentleness, and kindness. Our job is to stop and think for a minute. Our job is to always remember that lives and hearts are fragile -- especially at this time of year.

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One Book, One School Showcase

Thanks to each of your for helping your students contribute to our One Book, One School Showcase. It is evident that students used lots of inquiry to get to their final product. It's all good.


If you weren't here the night of the showcase, imagine some of the 2nd grade boys coming in wearing a tie in order to share projects with families. It was awesome.

I want to give a special shout-out to 2nd grade for their promotion of the showcase event. Attendance was high among our families of 2nd graders.

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Upcoming PD Reminders and Revisions

  • May 27 @10-11:30 Nadine Gilkison will share how she uses Digital Technology to enhance her teaching and students' learning. Stay tuned for more info from the Design Team.
  • May 27 @11:30-12:00 End of year info and closure
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For Your Calendar

  • Wednesday May 18 4:15-6:00 Young Author’s Conference

  • Thursday May 26 Field Day

16-17 School Year Events and Activities

  • Aug. 1 Rented student iPads delivered to CRES for parent pick-up
  • Aug. 4 6:30-7:30 K Parent Info Night
  • Aug. 8 5:00-6:30 Ice Cream Social
  • Aug. 23 5:15 1st and 2nd Grade Parent Info Night
  • Aug. 23 6:30 3rd and 4th Grace Parent Info Night
  • Sept. 29 5:30-7:00 HSE21Showcases/Open House
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Looking Ahead

Monday, May 16 Day 4

  • 9:30 Fourth Grade to SCI
  • 3:10 Collab Team 2 - Class lists


Tuesday, May 17 Day 1

  • 3:10 Collab Team K - Create your own agenda - PLEASE NOTE change in team


Wednesday, May 18 Day 2

  • 8:00 Champions Breakfast - bring your champion and a game to play
  • 2:00 Office meeting
  • 3:10 Collab Team 4 - create your own agenda
  • 4:15-6:00 Young Authors' Conference in the gym


Thursday, May 19 Day 3

  • 8:15 STL - W - Cook
  • 1:00 New ED class comes to visit CRES
  • 3:10 Collab Team 3 - create your own agenda - PLEASE NOTE change in team


Friday, May 20 Day 4

  • Hawaiian Dress - Break out your best/worst/brightest Hawaiian shirt
  • 8:15 STL - HM - Hale
  • 1:00 RtI meeting
  • 3:10 Collab Team 1 - Class lists


Monday, May 23 Day 1

  • 8:15 STL - TM - Cook
  • 3:10 Collab Team 2 - class lists


Tuesday, May 24 Day 2

  • 6:30 AM-10 PM - Fourth grade field trip
  • 8:15 STL - WA - Koewers
  • 3:10 Collab Team 3 - class lists


Wednesday, May 25 Day 3

  • 8:15 STL - RR - Koewers
  • 2:00 Office meeting
  • 2:30 Colts Assembly
  • 3:10 Collab Team 4 - class lists


Thursday, May 26 Day 4

  • Field Day
  • LAST DAY OF SCHOOL for students


Friday, May 27

  • 7:15 EOY Breakfast @ FHS
  • 8:00 EOY Celebration @ FHS Gym - certified staff required to attend
  • 10:00-11:30 Nadine Gilkison - Digital Learning
  • 11:30-12:00 EOY info and closure