The Triton Tribune

Be Kind ~ Be Awesome ~ Make The Right Choices

Volume 2 ~ Issue 4 ~ August 17, 2020

Amazing Triton Staff,

"Without patient endurance, even the smallest thing becomes unbearable. A lot depends on our attitude." ~Dalai Lama~

It's hard to imagine that Week 3 is upon us. And while Week 2 was not perfect, it was much improved from Week 1. Add to that a Cox Outage on Wednesday and Google Classroom crashing on Thursday afternoon.. I want to thank you for continuing to demonstrate grace, patience and endurance as we continue to improve at distance learning.

Faculty Advisory Committee Meeting

Our first FAC will be this Tuesday, August 18 at 2:45pm. Invitation will be sent on TEAMS.

Faculty Meeting

Our monthly staff meeting will be this Friday, August 21 at 2:00pm. SEA may want to meet with you 15 minutes earlier.

Class Changes to Balance Student Counts

This week, class changes will be the biggest challenge we will face. Due to contract language and based on actual enrollment, this is the final week where changes to students' schedules will be made. We will be making these changes starting tomorrow. Most of these are whole class changes where a class will be transferred to other teachers. Please note that all changes to "balance" student counts will be finalized by Friday, August 21.

Attendance Issues

This week, we begin the return to normal attendance protocols, keeping in mind what you can use to give attendance credit. When you give students attendance credit via an assignment turned in the week it was assigned, you will need to let Danielle know so she can make the correction. Please refer to Attendance Slide Below. Please know that there is another Cox outage scheduled tomorrow in the 91910 zip code, which might affect a few transfer students.

Academic Grades

As you start to grade work, please keep in mind the first two weeks involved work that were mired in technical glitches. While I cannot tell you how to grade, I want to encourage you to err on the side of grace for work submitted in the first two weeks. We are still trying to resolved technical glitches for a handful of students.

Virtual Open House

The date for our Open House will be Thursday, August 27, 2020 from 6:00pm - 7:30pm.

Clubs Information

If you are interested in advising a club this year, please contact Almero & the ASB. Even though the 2020-2021 school year has begun via distance learning, the requirements for clubs have pretty much remained unchanged. Everything will just need to be done virtually this year.

Just as if we had the students with us on campus, Club Advisors will be responsible for helping students facilitate all meetings/organization functions and all activities / fundraisers/expenditures will require the same procedures and forms outlined in the ELM CLUB PACKET.

Below are information that are pertinent to the week. They appear in this order:

  1. Understanding Middle Schoolers and Helping Them To Thrive
  2. PLC Common Syllabus Released
  3. Necessary Class Changes Starting This Week
  4. Attendance Information
  5. World Language Textbook Distribution
  6. ELM Virtual Daily Schedule
  7. A Message From Ms. Arroyo's Class
  8. ELM Virtual Open House
  9. ELM Technology Support Line
  10. A Guide to Student Login Credentials

Finally, please refer to the website for updates. We update it on a daily basis.


Here is this week's parent newsletter [link].

Let's have an amazing week!

Mrs. Finley

Middle school is one of the toughest times in a child's life. In 1994, Dr. Charles Robinson authored a seminal paper titled "Caught In the Middle: The Challenge of Middle Level Education" [link]. In this article, he debunked myths about the characteristics of youth between the ages of 10-14 years old (see picture below). He then outlined characteristics of an effective middle school program. One of the main characteristics of an effective middle school program the partnership between the family and the school. He stated, "In an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust, schools and families work together to ensure success for all students."

So the question is, what does working together with family looks like so that their children, our students thrive, ready to conquer high school and beyond? In 2016, the Washington Post released an article titled, "Top 10 Skills Middle School Students Need to Thrive, and How Parents Can Help." [link] They are:

  1. Make Good Friend Choices
  2. Work in Teams and Negotiate Conflict
  3. Manage a Student-Teacher Mismatch
  4. Create Organization and Homework Systems
  5. Monitor and Take Responsibility for Grades
  6. Learn to Self-Advocate
  7. Self-regulate Emotions
  8. Cultivate Passions and Recognize limitations
  9. Make Responsible, Safe and Ethical Choices
  10. Create and Innovate

Having been in education for 29 years and 15 of those years were in middle school, these skills are very important in the whole development of those we call "tweeners." Many of these skills move middle schoolers to become more autonomous and more resilient so they are successful in later years. This requires us, educators, to find the balance of teacher regulation and student autonomy, especially now during distance learning. We will need to explicitly teach our students these 10 skills as it applies to your content area. What makes this challenging is that you and I are not in the same space as our students. But we must find time to teach them to practice these skills KNOWING they will become stronger mentally, socially, emotionally and academically.

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One of the most ambitious projects that ELM embarked on two years ago is the concept of having a Common Syllabus per PLC (a community of teachers in school who teach the same subject). The Common Syllabus provided a venue where we can guarantee equitable instruction and opportunity for all students regardless of teacher assignment.

This is the second year of implementing the Common Syllabus. I have you to wait until Week 3 to release your syllabi so that your PLC can incorporate distance learning expectations into your respective syllabi.

For those of you who have submitted your syllabi to me, I have given you feedback as it relates to distance learning components and clarity on grades. If you have not sent me your syllabi yet, please do so as soon as possible.

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Necessary Class Changes This Week

Students' schedules may be changed this week. Please read below for the reasons this may happen. Counselors have done a great job to minimize these moves but this is part of the annual process of what we call balancing classes.

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Attendance Information

Please read the instructions below on how teachers will be taking attendance and what students should do on their end to ensure that they will not be marked absent.

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For World Language Textbook Distribution on 8/19 - 8/20, please read the following memo [link] because there are some things that you need to prepare PRIOR to you and your child attending.

  1. Create a window shield/dashboard sign like shown below. Click on this link to access the template.
  2. Come at your designated time. If you are not able to make it then, Friday is a make-up for those who cannot come.
  3. If you cannot come on the make-up date on Friday, please email Mr. Nafarrete at to make an appointment for a special time.
  4. If you have an 8th grader who has NOT returned books, this is an opportunity for you to return these books. Place unreturned books in the trunk, and when you get to the pick up station, we will take your 7th grade books and replace them with 8th grade books.
  5. NO WALK-UPS or BIKING TO SCHOOL to pick up textbooks.

Students do not have to be present to pick up textbooks. But they will need the receipt to clear attendance with their World Language Teachers.
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ELM Virtual Daily Schedule

This is the latest schedule for ELM, which now includes office hours from 8:20am - 8:50am. Note that students must make an appointment for office hours to ensure that adequate time is secured.

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A Message from Ms. Arroyo's Class

Ms. Arroyo's class created this message for you!

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ELM Technology Support Desk

If you need help with any technology issue, please contact Mr. Doyle, our site IT support. He will get back to you faster.

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Guide to Student Login Credentials

Click on the title which is a link to the pdf version of the picture below.

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