Principal's Corner #14

December 6, 2019

10 school days until winter break, my principal gave to me...

These next two weeks can be a challenge for us all, so let's have some fun!
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“Sometimes crying or laughing are the only options left, and laughing feels better right now.” ― Veronica Roth, Divergent

Hope this video brings laughter to your day. Happy Friday and Enjoy your weekend.
Erudcator Sensory Bottles....


  • To all of you for continuing to do what you do for our students! It isn't easy, but you do it and you do it well!
  • To Darren Dennstedt and Matthew Pedregon for allowing me to be vulnerable at our Solutions Based Leadership on Monday.
  • To Dawn Thompson, Matthew Pedregon, Scott Rogers, Amanda Jehn, and Sarah Hammershaimb for organizing a great SCHOOL sponsored service project. Even with the snow day, you rocked it!
  • To Kori Shaiman, Lauren Alpert, and Alison Berner for being a sounding board as I processed difficult situations.
  • To Joan Salinger and Melissa Alder for holding up the fort while we managed several intense situations.
  • To Dawn Thompson and Kori Shaiman for being courageous at the multi-cultural pot luck.

From Katie Johnson

No Contact Lists

Each grade level teacher should have received access to their grade level updated "no-contact" list, whereas the remainder of you have access to all grade level lists since you may encounter them in groups, lunch and/or recess. Each of our no contacts has a start date; if the no contact agreement is ended you will be notified and the end date will be listed. In the notes section, you can see if the no contact was assigned by administration and/or parent requested. This information is EXTREMELY confidential, please do your due diligence to ensure these students do not interact during the school day. If you have any questions, please ask.

Literacy from Lois

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Spring PTO Auction will be here before we know it! Use the form below to request 'Buy It Now" items during the auction.

Differentiation Download

Kameron Riley and Amy Bainbridge are Cottonwood Creek’s Differentiation Coaches! This year Kameron and Amy will be hosting professional development at Cottonwood Creek on Monday, Jan. 13. The goal of this day is to get some ideas on how you can provide some differentiation in your classroom. Instead of giving up your plan time, you will have the opportunity to have Kameron or Amy provide a 30-minute mini-lesson in your classroom.

This will allow you to observe differentiation live and in person.

If you are interested, please check out the Sign Up Genius link.

Once you sign up, Amy or Kameron will touch base with to discuss ideas and you can decide what you would like us to do with your class. Ideas can include Kagan structures, Depth & Complexity icons, Content Imperative icons, etc.

We will provide debriefing in Amy’s room afterschool on Monday, Jan. 13 from 2:45-3:45.

In addition, we will also offer some PD on Feb. 18.


This year our differentiation training is focusing on the 4 C’S in Education:

Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration, & Communication.

This week I wanted to share some information about Critical Thinking.

Critical thinking occurs when students are analyzing, evaluating, interpreting, or synthesizing information and applying creative thought to form an argument, solve a problem, or reach a conclusion. Here are 5 ideas to help your students become critical thinkers:

  1. Ask students to clearly define the question or problem.
  2. Ask students to gather information to help weigh options.
  3. Have students apply the information & ask critical questions.
  4. Teach students how to consider the short & long- term implications.
  5. Have students explore the full spectrum of viewpoints.

Here is a link to “The Critical Thinking Workbook.”


The workbook has great activities you can try with your students or on your own!


Your Differentiation Coaches

CHECK THIS OUT – one of our very own Cougars – Go Sarah!

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  • Tuesday, December 10: Katie Out, ADCO
  • Wednesday, December 11: 3rd/4th Grade Choir Concert @ 1:45, PM ASSEMBLY SCHEDULE
  • Wednesday, December 11: Principal Advisory Committee
  • Thursday, December 12: Spelling Bee @ 1:30
  • Thursday, December 12: Cottonwood Creek Advisory Committee @ 5:45pm
  • Thursday, December 12: 3rd/4th Grade Choir Concert @ 6:30
  • Thursday, December 19: Staff Party (invite above)
  • Monday, December 23-Friday, January 3: Winter Break (In case you didn't know)
  • Monday, January 6: Non-Contact Day - Staff Meeting 9:30-11:30 Breakfast will be provided
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Cottonwood Creek Elementary School