April 4, 2016
Saying Goodbye to Debra Dennis
Bonneville wishes to thank our custodian, Debra Dennis, for her diligent service to our building and community. Debra has always added a ray of sunshine to whatever she is doing or whoever she is around. She has an inspiring ability to interact with students and adults in a positive and service-oriented way. Debra will be pursuing her education at Weber State and has taken employment as a cake artist, which we know she will be very successful with! We also wish her the very best in her health and family life. Thank you, Debra, for all you have done for our Bobcats. We will miss you!
I spent some time with my 5 year-old grandson this past week, and he was trying to teach me how to play the popular "Mario" video game. I have NO experience with video games, and as I watched him, I tried to figure out what buttons he was pushing and more importantly, why he pushes them at certain times. In other words, I was struggling with the objective of the game. He patiently tried to explain to me that he had to jump at just the right times so he "could get more power." The power would help him get through the hard areas of the "kingdom" so he "could win." In his young mind, he saw the end goal and knew what he had to do to reach it. I couldn't help thinking how often we as educators and parents find ourselves "jumping" a lot, trying to make the right moves at the just the right times needed to reach our end goal, which is always student success and achievement. However, if we don't know why we are "jumping" or what we are reaching for when we make those moves, we will find ourselves feeling like that little Mario character jumping all over the place, exhausting ourselves and never really reaching the all important goals. I mention this because one of the reasons I love Power-Up weeks is because it gives us a chance as teachers to narrow our focus so that we make just the right "jumps" or instructional actions at just the right time. We are "empowering" our students to be successful on their assessments by reviewing essential standards with them according to their specific needs. I believe taking this action as an instructional team will help us focus on the most important "moves" we can make at this time of the year. Thank you to all of the teachers who have so diligently planned and have begun or are beginning their power-up instruction. The weeks ahead are some of the most important days in our students' year, and you are the critical force behind their success! Thank you parents, for supporting this effort by making sure your students are at school every day on time and ready to learn! Thank you all!
What to say and when?
When things come up in an elementary classroom that cause students to feel fear, how do we know what to say and when? The National Association for Elementary School Principals (NAESP) suggests the following:
- The manner which adults express their emotions will influence the reactions of students. Be in emotional self-control when addressing this topic.
- Be honest with students and age appropriate with the topic. All children benefit from concrete information presented at the proper level of understanding, and maturity. Explain, but don’t provide unnecessary details.
- Young children interpret very literally; therefore choose words carefully to insure the child will not misinterpret.
- Make sure students know that there are people in charge who help everyone stay safe. Children need to know that things are okay and that there are adults in charge who are helping everyone involved. Talk to students about the people who are helping to ensure their school is safe, and share admiration with them about the great work these people are doing.