February's Supervisor's Corner
South Harrison Township Elementary School ~ 2016
SH Curriculum News and Notes (CNN)
In Janaury, Mr. Rosenheim and Ms. Calandro presented the SH 2015 District PARCC results to the South Harrison Board of Education. This interesting and useful breakdown of student performance gave the board a valuable overview of student performance on this first year of the PARCC assessment. We hope to share the PowerPoint in upcoming months on the school district web site.
This month, staff will continue to work on the MCAs under the guidance of Mr. Rosenheim and the focus will be on ELA unit 3 and 4. Meetings with Grade Level Teams (GLT) will continue as well as discussions in Professional Learning Teams (PLTs).
As February begins, we will bid "Ciao" to Ms. Christina Brown, who has taken a position as an Italian teacher at Delsea High School. We wish her all of the best!
Katie, Rachael, Robert, Stefanie, Megan, and Trisha
As we move into the new year it may be time to revisit some practices to "refresh" classroom practice. We recognize that many teachers already implement some of the practices described below and encourage you to continue to use them to maintain a consistent open-line of communication with students, parents/guardians, case managers, administrators, etc. in an effort to fully support student progress throughout the remainder of the school year.
- Revisit Routines: Establishing routines, procedures, and expectations at the very start of the school year for things such as homework, missing work, absences, corrections, etc. are critical. For example, when a student is absent from class, place missed notes and assignments and or assessment notifications in a folder secured to a bulletin board. When students return to class, have him or her access the folder. If the student missed an assessment, leave a note for the student to come see you; follow up with that student. Revisit these throughout the year, especially as we enter the latter part of the school year. Consider posting these procedures on your website for both students and parents to access when needed.
- Grade Book & Communication: Every two weeks, ensure your grade book is updated with all current assignments. If you notice any concern that a student may be at risk for receiving a failing grade, inform both the student and parent (email or phone). Provide specific information as to why the grade may be low (i.e. missing work, attendance, low assessment grades, etc.) as well as what options there are for the student to get themselves back on track (i.e. help in school, retest, etc.). Consider using multiple means for communicating with parents. For example, if you are emailing a parent and not receiving a response, contact that parent via phone.
- Monthly Grade Book Printouts: Consider implementing a procedure in which monthly grade book printouts through Power Teacher are provided to students. A suggestion may be to ask those students who are in danger of failing to get the printouts signed by a parent/guardian. If it is not returned the next day, contact the parent/guardian via email/phone.
- Early, frequent, and decisive intervention: Rather than waiting for a student’s failure in a course to precipitate a parent meeting, discuss the student’s performance in other classes or with your grade level team. Take the opportunity in GLCs to discuss with team members or the reading specialist possible ways to support students, what issues are persisting, what interventions are available, and how to best support the student for a successful school year.
- Plan for Assessment: Map out your grading for the trimester to ensure you will have the proper amount of assignments/assessments in each of the categories by mid-and end of trimester. Do your best to pace larger assessments throughout the trimester so assessments in each subject areas are not happening during the same time period.
Supporting G.R.E.A.T. Instruction - What exactly is "Monitoring?"
In our continued effort to support G.R.E.A.T. Instruction, monitoring student learning continues to be a discussion point in walkthroughs, observations, and instructional conversations. So what is monitoring?
Monitoring is activities pursued by teachers to keep track of student learning for purposes of making instructional decisions and providing feedback to students on their progress.
In reflecting on your teaching practice, ask yourself: when monitoring, do I watch or do I track? Tracking is being intentional about how you scan your classroom. Decide specifically what you are looking for and remain disciplined about it in the face of distractions.
Keep the Idea of Tracking Simple and Effective
Here is the formula to implement in your classroom:
Track for Specific Errors
- What aren't the students getting
- Who is not getting it
- Address those mistakes (whole group/small group/one-on-one conferencing)
Track for Success Points
- Decide on what determines excellence from completion (write them down)
- Observe/track whether students are doing those things that measure excellence
Below is a fantastic article about how to monitor or track student learning in your classroom. Click on the link below to read the article.
Teachers College Reading and Writing Project - Spring 2016 Reunion!
On Saturday, March 19, 2016, TCRWP will once again open their doors to educators from all over the country in their 90th Saturday Reunion. This, flex hour eligible, PD day includes free workshops including keynotes by renowned authors and leaders in the field of education, senior Project staff, including Lucy Calkins and all TCRWP staff developers.
There will be over 125 workshops offered on topics such as: argument writing, writing about reading, reading interpretively and analytically, embedding historical fiction in nonfiction text sets, opinion writing for very young writers, managing workshop instruction, aligning instruction to the CCSS, using performance assessments and learning progressions to ratchet up the level of teaching, state-of-the-art test prep, phonics, guided reading and more.
If you would like to learn more about the workshop (attended previously by South Harrison teachers), please contact Ms. Anderson or, Columbia alumni, Mr. Rosenheim.
The morning keynote address by author Andrew Solomon,
will be held at Riverside Church at 9:00 a.m.
490 Riverside Drive (between 120th and 122nd Streets).
The ensuing workshops will be held at Teachers College, 525 W.120th Street, NY 10027
February 12th - In-Service
February 12th In-Service: Morning Session
Assessment Literacy: We will continue our conversation about creating valid, reliable, and meaningful assessments in this workshop based on Module 1 & 2 of the Assessment Design Toolkit found at: http://www.csai-online.org/spotlight/assessment-design-toolkit
iReady: Turn-key training in this new math intervention tool will be offered during this month's in-service.
Balanced Literacy: This is the second workshop in a series focusing on writing within balanced literacy framework. Specifically, we will focus on interactive and shared writing.
February 12 In-Service: Afternoon Session
Assessment Checklist: We we will use a locally developed Assessment Checklist to evaluate assessments previously created. In this work session, staff are encouraged to use the assessment checklist introduced during the morning workshop to evaluate the assessment developed for this years SGO.
Budget Projection: This year's budget process asks teachers to give a list of needs and wants. In this session, teachers will work with their grade level team members to fill in a Google Doc intended to capture teacher curriculum orders.
Reading Series Fair: (see below for description)
February 12th: Afternoon Reading Series Fair
During the February In-Service, Grades K-6 ELA teachers will have the opportunity to evaluate three reading series under consideration for adoption.
Interested in looking at the series before the in-service? Check out the information below on the three reading series...
Journeys ©2017 : Grades K–5 comprehensive, research-based English Language Arts program built on the foundation of the proven Journeys instructional design. This series emphasizes student skill mastery, and fosters problem-solving and critical-thinking, analysis skills. More information or to evaluate Journeys, go to: hmhco.com/journeys
To access the 120-day online preview:
2) Under New Users, Click on Register
3) Enter Access Word: NAJOURNEYS17
5) Enter your contact information
6) Use the drop-down menu to select login as: Teacher, School Admin, or District Admin. Click “Login.”
7) Go to the Resources tab – click View
Calkins' Units of Study in Reading: This series builds on decades of teaching and research—in literally tens of thousands of schools. In states across the country, this curriculum has already given young people extraordinary power, not only as readers, but also as thinkers. Instruction in the Units of Study for Teaching Reading, K–5 is organized around four grade-specific units of study at each level and a book of suggestions for adapting your teaching based on your students’ abilities and needs. In grades K–2, units include one foundational unit and three other units to address reading fiction and informational texts. In grades 3–5, units include two units in reading fiction and two in reading informational texts. Each unit includes approximately 17-21 sessions, each representing a day in the reading workshop. Search by grade level and download samplers from the web site at: http://samplers.heinemann.com/ruos-series-overview
Scott Foresman Reading Street © 2011: is the third series we will investigate and is a comprehensive Reading and Language Arts series for the 21st Century. Reading Street delivers classic and soon-to-be classic literature, scientifically research-based instruction, and a wealth of groundbreaking online experiences for high student engagement. My Teaching Library takes the guesswork out of Response to Intervention with a strong core emphasis on ongoing progress-monitoring and an explicit plan for managing small groups of students. The architecture of Understanding by Design accelerates all learners, especially English language learners, toward greater proficiency with a sustained Unit focus on concepts and language. Explore the component parts of the program online at: http://www.pearsonschool.com/index.cfm?locator=PS1dH9
February 10th - PD Splinter Session
All information related to flex Hours, can be found on the South Harrison webpage by going to For Staff - Professional Development - and Flex Hours.
- Please note all flex hour reflection forms should be submitted within five days of a workshop.
- Requests to use of Flex Hours should be submitted to Laura LaPalomento at Lapalomentol@krsd.org by the designated date.
Job Embedded PD
Teachers have the option of using GLT and PLT to explore topics with their team such as those described above. There are two teacher resources available to work with staff during the school day this year:
ELA: If the topic is ELA related please consider asking Mrs. Travaglini to work with you and can offer and support ELA related topics in your classroom in addition to supporting the implantation of "new" ELA programs material into the classroom.
Digital Literacy: Mrs.Bram is available to work with teachers (and students) and can assist teachers in areas pertaining to digital literacy. Mrs. Bram can also offer teachers a training or a refresher on commonly used programs such as Powerpoint and Word. Please sign up for these weekly periods in Mrs. Bram schedule using the online reservation sign-up page, which will detail the days and periods Mrs.Bram is available to work with you!
GLTs and PLTs are another form of job embedded professional development and the focus for February's PLT discussion include the following:
- SGOs: Grade level teams may discuss any data collected using the new data protocol introduced in January's PD splinter session. and consider any adjustments that need to be made in instruction as a consequence.
- Preparing for the next MCA: Continue to examine your MCAs in relation to where your students are currently performing and where you expect them to perform at the next MCA.
- Curricular revisions: As you progress through the year and find units of instruction in need of improvement, please continue to make any needed revisions to curriculum documents that are located on the SH "L" drive in the curriculum 000 folder.
- Budget: We have begun the budget planning process for this year and teachers are asked to please make time in your discussions (GLT and PLT) to outline Needs and Wants for next year in terms of curricular items. The curriculum leads will be assisting you in this process and will be asking you for your input.
Reminder: Each PLT will record minutes for the meeting (set up in Google). You may record and organize the minutes however your PLT would like. The following key information should be evident in the meeting minutes: date, attendance, goal(s) for the PLT meetings, progress toward the goal, and the direction for the next meeting.
Model Curriculum Assessments (MCAs)
As a reminder, each MCA must be administered by the assessment deadline and all scores must be submitted on or before the submission deadline.
E/LA & Math Unit 3 MCA: February 25, 2016
E/LA & Math Unit 4 MCA: April 22, 2016
E/LA & Math Unit 5 MCA: June 17, 2016
For grades K-6 (ELA and math), the common reporting protocol (CRP) document should be sent home within 5 days of the submission deadline to report student progress to parents. As a reminder, all MCA materials (revised assessments, scoring guides, and reporting protocols) have been shared via Google.
For questions regarding MCAs, please contact Robert Rosenheim at email@example.com.
Detailed information about grading procedures for this school year was e-mailed to teachers before the winter recess and is also on the district "L" drive in the Curriculum 000 folder.
Highlights of the procedures described in the document include:
- A description of the grade weight and ranges for grade K-6 for classroom, department and special area teachers.
- An outline of the expectations for grade book use for teachers who report using standards based grades
SGO 2.1 On the Road to Ownership - What now?
Dates to note for SGOs are as follows:
- February 15, 2016: SGO Revision Deadline
- March 25, 2016: SGO Process complete (begin preparing for summative meeting)
It is important to continuously revisit SGO goals as your instruction and students progress through the school year using data gained from your formative and summative assessments. Please remember to save sample student evidences for discussion in the spring.
Information and support on Student Growth Objectives (SGOs) can be found on the staff website under For Staff - Evaluations - and SGO Information
2016 PARCC Testing Schedule (regular administration)
South Harrison Township Elementary School
• ELA (3, 4, 5, 6) and Mathematics (3, 4, 5, 6): May 2nd – May 10th
• Testing will last between 80 and 110 minutes each day.
• For grades 3-5, the ELA portion is comprised of 3 units and the mathematics portion is comprised of 4 units.
• For grade 6, the ELA portion is comprised of 3 units and the mathematics portion is comprised of 3 units.
*PLEASE NOTE: All make-up testing will occur after the regular administration has concluded.
PARCC: Updates and Information
We continue to add several educator-specific PARCC resources on the district website. You can find these resources on our district website under For Staff – Curriculum & Instruction – and PARCC Resources
The NJDOE identifies 4 things the assessments are designed to do:
1. Serve as an academic checkup to ensure that students are meeting grade-level expectations and remain on track for the next grade level and ultimately, high school graduation;
2. Help teachers and schools identify students who need support so they can provide additional instruction;
3. Help districts identify persistent achievement gaps so they can identify strategies and allocate resources appropriately; and
4. Help districts measure the effectiveness of their curriculum, interventions, and programs.
The timeline for each component of the 2014-15 PARCC score release is listed below. Please note that the later time-frame for this release is caused by the need to set baseline scoring in the first year of a new test administration. We expect results for subsequent years to be available to parents and educators much earlier.
• December 2015: Student-level PARCC score reports released to districts (Middle School, Elementary Schools)
• January 2016: PARCC disaggregate data released to districts (High School, Middle School, Elementary Schools)
• March 2016: Educator median Student Growth Percentile (mSGP) reports released to districts for use in finalizing 2014-15 evaluations for qualifying educators.
Should you have any specific questions regarding PARCC, please do not hesitate to contact Robert Rosenheim at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*PLEASE NOTE: The PARCC will only be administered once this school year during the spring.
CURRICULUM & INSTRUCTION TEAM MEMBERS
Patricia Calandro, Chief Academic Officer
Rachael Anderson, Elementary Supervisor K-5
Katie Fransko, Special Education Supervisor PK-12
Stefanie Fox-Manno, Humanities Supervisor 6-12
Robert Rosenheim, Data/Assessment Supervisor K-12
Megan Bruder, STEM Supervisor 6-12
Gail Bram, Curriculum Lead K-3 and Special Areas
Amanda Grabas, Curriculum Lead 4-6 and Special Education
*Please see your curriculum lead with any requests for PD, resources, or other questions/concerns regarding curriculum and instruction