Monclova Primary

Weekly Bulletin

Events for Week of January 11 - 17

Monday, January 11

LPDC - 4:00 pm

Tuesday, January 12

Special Education Dept. Meeting - 8:00 am

Board Meeting - 6:00 pm

Wednesday, January 13

Fitness Day

GLC Meeting - 7:45 am

Character Wheel - 9:30 am

Principal's Meeting - 9:30 am (Betsey Out)

Thursday, January 14

End of 2nd quarter

2nd Grade Weather Presentation - 1:50 pm - Community Room

Technology Advisory Committee Meeting - 3:45 pm (Rachel's room)

Friday, January 15

Teacher Workday - No Students

All Staff to AWHS Auditorium for State of Schools Meeting - refreshments

at 7:30 am and meeting begins at 8:00 am


Thank you:

All staff for your professional and appropriate response to our 3 unplanned fire alarms yesterday! It truly showed you have prepared your students for emergency situations!

Social Committee for organizing some great events for our staff, students and community this year! Looking forward to serving and having fun as a staff!


Winter RtI days moved to Feb. 3 and 4, both full days and each teacher will have a scheduled time.

Winter Benchmarking Dates:

Gr. K STAR - Early Literacy week of Jan. 19 - Follow up with DIBELS for 25th percentile and below

Gr. 1 STAR - Early Literacy or STAR Reading week of Jan. 19 - Follow up with DIBELS for 25th percentile and below

Gr. 2 - 4 - TAR Reading week of Jan. 19 - Follow up with DIBELS for 25th percentile and below

Gr. 1 - 4 - STAR Math week of Jan. 25

Gr. K - 4 - Writing screening week of Jan. 19 or Jan. 25

Make up screening week of Feb. 1

AW and BGSU has scheduled a teacher matching meeting for February 24 from 4:00 to 6:00 pm at Waterville Primary. This is for anyone interested in having a student teacher next school year. The student teacher would be with you all year long, like the teachers we have in the building now.

Tentative dates for your calendar:

AW Spirit of Giving Spaghetti Fundraiser - February 19

Family Fun Night Fundraiser Carnival and Basketball Game - March 11

CREATE! Conference - June 6

Words of Wisdom and Action..................

Below you will find some ideas or inspiration for lesson closure and/or informal assessments. As I have stated before, the best part of my job is being in the classroom observing the interactive and effective activities you use to teach and seeing the students' excitement! I have seen several of these activities in your classrooms along with other quick informal assessments. Keep up the AWesome work!

22 Powerful Closure Activities by Todd Finley - posted on Edutopia 12-15-15

Too many university supervisors and administrators criticize the absence of lesson closure, a dubious assessment practice likely caused by the improper use of Madeline Hunter’s lesson plan model (PDF) as a de facto checklist of eight mandatory teaching practices -- anticipatory set, objective and purpose, input, modeling, checking for understanding, guided practice, independent practice, and closure -- a custom that Hunter decried in 1985 (PDF). Although it offers multiple benefits, please don't view closure as a professional must-do.

What Is Closure?

Closure is the activity that ends a lesson and creates a lasting impression, a phenomenon that Colorado State University professor Rod Lucero calls the recency effect.

Teachers use closure to:

  • Check for understanding and inform subsequent instruction
  • Emphasize key information
  • Tie up loose ends
  • Correct misunderstandings

Students find closure helpful for:

  • Summarizing, reviewing, and demonstrating their understanding of major points
  • Consolidating and internalizing key information
  • Linking lesson ideas to a conceptual framework and/or previously-learned knowledge
  • Transferring ideas to new situations

Like contracting your bicep at the top of a dumbbell curl, closure squeezes an extra oomph into a lesson. See my favorite closure strategies below!

Creative Closure Activities

1. Snowstorm

Students write down what they learned on a piece of scratch paper and wad it up. Given a signal, they throw their paper snowballs in the air. Then each learner picks up a nearby response and reads it aloud.

2. High-Five Hustle

Ask students to stand up, raise their hands and high-five a peer -- their short-term hustle buddy. When there are no hands left, ask a question for them to discuss. Solicit answers. Then play "Do the Hustle" as a signal for them to raise their hands and high-five a different partner for the next question. (Source: Gretchen Bridgers)

3. Parent Hotline

Give students an interesting question about the lesson without further discussion. Email their guardians the answer so that the topic can be discussed over dinner.

4. Two-Dollar Summary

Kids write a two-dollar (or more) summary of the lesson. Each word is worth ten cents. For extra scaffolding, ask students to include specific words in their statement. (Source (PDF): Ann Lewis and Aleta Thompson)

5. Paper Slide

On paper, small groups sketch and write what they learned. Then team representatives line up and, one and a time, slide their work under a video camera while quickly summarizing what was learned. The camera doesn't stop recording until each representative has completed his or her summary.

6. DJ Summary

Learners write what they learned in the form of a favorite song. Offer extra praise if they sing.

7. Gallery Walk

On chart paper, small groups of students write and draw what they learned. After the completed works are attached to the classroom walls, others students affix Stickies to the posters to extend on the ideas, add questions, or offer praise.

8. Sequence It

Students can quickly create timelines with Timetoast to represent the sequence of a plot or historical events.

9. Low-Stakes Quizzes

Give a short quiz using technologies like Socrative, BubbleSheet,GoSoapBox, or Google Forms. Alternatively, have students write down three quiz questions (to ask at the beginning of the next class).

10. Cover It

Have kids sketch a book cover. The title is the class topic. The author is the student. A short celebrity endorsement or blurb should summarize and articulate the lesson's benefits.

11. Question Stems

Have students write questions about the lesson on cards, using question stems framed around Bloom's Taxonomy. Have students exchange cards and answer the question they have acquired.

12. So What?

Kids answer the following prompts:

  • What takeaways from the lesson will be important to know three years from now?
  • Why?

13. Dramatize It

Have students dramatize a real-life application of a skill.

14. Beat the Clock

Ask a question. Give students ten seconds to confer with peers before you call on a random student to answer. Repeat.

15. Find a First-Grade Student

Have kids orally describe a concept, procedure, or skill in terms so simple that a child in first grade would get it.

16. Review It

Direct kids to raise their hands if they can answer your questions. Classmates agree (thumbs up) or disagree (thumbs down) with the response.

17. CliffsNotes, Jr.

Have kids create a cheat sheet of information that would be useful for a quiz on the day's topic. (Source (PDF): Ann Sipe, "40 Ways to Leave a Lesson")

18. Students I Learned From the Most

Kids write notes to peers describing what they learned from them during class discussions.

19. Elevator Pitch

Ask students to summarize the main idea in under 60 seconds to another student acting as a well-known personality who works in your discipline. After summarizing, students should identify why the famous person might find the idea significant.

20. Simile Me

Have students complete the following sentence: "The [concept, skill, word] is like _______ because _______."

21. Exit Ticket Folder

Ask students to write their name, what they learned, and any lingering questions on a blank card or "ticket." Before they leave class, direct them to deposit their exit tickets in a folder or bin labeled either "Got It," "More Practice, Please," or "I Need Some Help!" -- whichever label best represents their relationship to the day's content. (Source: Erika Savage)

22. Out-the-Door Activity

After writing down the learning outcome, ask students to take a card, circle one of the following options, and return the card to you before they leave:

  • Stop (I'm totally confused.)
  • Go (I'm ready to move on.)
  • Proceed with caution (I could use some clarification on . . .)