Monday Morning News You Can Use

Respect, Responsiblity, and Ready to Learn


On behalf of Jared, Dave and I, we would like to wish you a very happy holiday season. With all of the very difficult situations our school community has had to deal with over the past few months, take time this holiday season to be with family and friends. Make to time to rest and rejuvenate.

Have a very happy holiday season. We hope that your New Year is filled with joy and peace. See you in 2015!

CCMS Pays it Forward

Below is an excerpt from the CCMS Pays it Forward blog developed by Kate Bucci and her students. Please note the author!

Today everyone got straight to work and between the logo creators, bloggers and creative team everyone is doing amazing work. This video is going to help people come together in a way that is just amazing. I should know I experienced it first hand. I lost my house to a fire and everything in it and I witnessed so many people come together in a way I never thought they would. Right here people are doing great things right in front of my eyes. I personally believe of everyone payed it forward then we would see great things happen. One act of kindness goes a long way.

Emily Jones

Pay It Forward Public Service Announcement Project (PSA)

Our Media Literacy Specialist Kate Bucci and her students have embarked on a meaningful journey to create a PSA on the importance of paying it forward. Ms. Bucci's students watched the movie Pay it Forward. After watching the movie, Ms. Bucci posted; "The unexpected ending had many of us feeling emotional, but it also sparked a lot of thought and discussion. "

Ms. Bucci asked her students to blog about what Pay it Forward meant to them. Here are some student responses:

  • Pay it forward means helping others when they really need it the most.

  • Pay it forward is a cycle that starts with you doing something nice to somebody else, and then they do something nice for three people, and the cycle keeps going.

Ms. Bucci's students are creating the storyboard, writing the script, creating a logo and blogging about the experience. Next week they will begin the filming of different skits for the video they will create. Currently the students have enlisted the help of 15 - 20 teachers and administrators to support this project.

If you would like to learn more about this great project, click on the link to check out the student generated blog:

If you have the chance, stop by the library to see this great project in action.

Innovative Practices

Grading Smarter Not Harder

Last month in this section, I addressed Rick Wormeli's piece on redoing work entitled Producing Your Best Should be the Big Idea.

This month I would like to bring attention to a book by Myron Dueck titled Grading Smarter Not Harder. This book echos many of the same sentiments as Rick Wormeli's work. In the very first chapter the author discusses the impact of zeros on a student's average as well as the extent to which teachers include nonacademic variables into the grading of students' learning. Duek outlines some scenarios that teachers face every day with missing and late assignments. We are all well aware of the mathematical implications a zero has on a student's grade. The idea that this punitive measure will some how now make the assignment that much more important to the student is unfounded. In fact, research shows it has the opposite affect.

Instead of punitive measures, Dueck suggests using alternative strategies. One strategy is to use incompletes and interventions rather than zeros.

  1. Set time spans rather than due dates - Time spans such as "some time next week"provide students with flexibility and choice. (Dueck,22)
  2. Use the Late or Incomplete Assignment Form (attached to the email) - This form allows students to plan a strategy for completing the assignment, to see what interventions are available in school and "also allows for the missing assigner to be a catalyst for students to obtain the support they need to be effective in class". (Dueck, 24)
  3. Implement Intervention Strategies - try strategies such as after school help, homework club, visit with school counselor or homework completion centers during lunch or before/after school
  4. When necessary, assign incompletes - Listing an assignment as incomplete is much better than the powerful zero.This will afford the student the opportunity to complete the assignment.

Upcoming Events

12/15 - Science Data Day

12/16 PBIS - 2 pm in the library

12/17 - School safety meeting - 2 pm in room 404

12/18 - Department meetings - 2 pm

12/19 - grade 7 RtI Day

12/23 - Break begins

Action Items

There are no upcoming action items this month.