ENSC Family Notes

March 17, 2014

March 12 Make Up Day

If you checked out my website (alinson@eastnoble.net) or Facebook (facebook.com/EastNoble), you know by now that we will make up March 12 with an eLearning Day on Saturday April 12 and one hour eLearning on Wednesday of this week. We have spent the last 2 1/2 years working with students using technology in and out of the classroom, teaching them to use technology safely, and helping them understand the importance of caring for their devices. They are ready, we are all ready for this new journey.

Family/Community Technology Visit Day

Wednesday, March 26 the ENSC school buildings will be opening their doors to families and community members to observe, participate, and learn more about how technology is impacting education today. Each building will host two one-hour sessions from 8:30 - 9:30 a.m. and also 9:45 - 10:45 a.m. Please stop in our buildings and observe how technology is changing education to a learner centered environment.

The 2014 Legislative Session is Over

Here are few of the education bills that were passed during the 2014 legislative session.

HB 1004 - Preschool Pilot program will begin in fall 2015. A student committee on early childhood education is to be created for this summer.
HB 1213 - Requires the Indiana career council to appoint a subcommittee that includes a member of each council and representatives of high school career and technical education programs, the department of education, community colleges, the commission for higher education, and industry to: (1) review the current Core 40 diploma course offerings; (2) make recommendations to the state board of education concerning changing course requirements, including the total number of academic credits required, changing the types of diplomas offered, and the need for a career and technical education diploma; and (3) examine and make recommendations concerning career and technical education offerings.
SB 1 - Originally, this bill was designed to eliminate the business personal property tax. This would have been a significant reduction to our capital projects and transportation funds; however, that did not happen. There is a reduction for business owners; however, not to the extent that the governor wanted.
SB91 - Education standards. Adds a definition of "college and career readiness". Provides that before July 1, 2014, the state board of education (state board) shall adopt Indiana college and career readiness educational standards. Provides that during the 2015-2016 school year, the state board shall authorize the department to administer either the ISTEP assessment or a comparable assessment program that is aligned with the educational standards. Provides that before the state board may authorize a new assessment program, the state board shall submit the proposed assessment program to the budget committee for review. http://iga.in.gov/legislative/2014/bills/senate/91/#
SB14 - Excuses students from school for up to five days to participate in State Fair exhibits and activities.
SB229 - Under the measure, Hoosiers with legal carry permits can keep firearms out of sight in locked vehicles on school property. If the gun is in sight or the vehicle is unlocked, it would be a misdemeano

East Noble Facebook Account

If you have not already checked out the ENSC Facebook account, go to www.facebook.com/EastNoble. You will find posts related to ENSC updates such as cancellations, update on make-up plan, reminders, etc. "Like" the page and you will receive updates to your Facebook page. Right now the page has over 1300 likes.

Summer School Dates Set

Summer school courses will be offered again this year for the high school and to provide support to third graders who will be taking the summer iRead test. The dates for the high school courses will be June 9 - July 3. There will be a session in the morning and another session in the afternoon. This allows students to take two courses.

Super Hero of the Week is Avilla's Jo Smith

While Super Heroes can leap buildings in a single bound, the real question is, “Can they leap a Noble County snow pile?” Given this winter, that would prove to be a daunting task; but Avilla’s Jo Smith would certainly give it a try if it meant good things for her class!

Whether it be at the baseball diamond, at a football game, a soccer match, or at the GridIron Grill, Jo Smith is an advocate for East Noble Schools! Her passion to excel is contagious and she is appreciated by the community for her willingness to do whatever it takes to make students successful.

Jo has been a friendly face at Avilla since 1995. During that time she has taught a variety of grades and helped in numerous capacities, from serving as a chaperone with Washington D.C. trips to a Math Bowl Coach. She currently is teaching fourth grade and helping to build a culture of respect and responsibility not just in her class, but across the entire school. Jo is married to Nelson and has three great kids, Stephen, Tony, and Olivia, all of whom are students in the district.

A Few Websites Worth a Look

50 Crazy Ideas to Change Education - http://tinyurl.com/pr9wj84

How Smart is Your Right Foot - http://tinyurl.com/oh8p4nn

36 Core Teacher Apps For Inquiry Learning With iPads - http://tinyurl.com/lf29re4

Have a great week...

We are just two weeks away from spring break and once that arrives, the end of the year will fly by quickly. We are still standing on Friday, June 7 as the last student day.

Spring is arriving!!


Building and Curriculum Notes

Curriculum Notes

WIDA Standards for ELL Students

As a district with a growing ELL population, it is important to know that classroom teachers, by law, must have a clear plan in place to provide ELL content to students. The implementation of this plan must be different than what is done for all other students; in addition, it must be purposefully, planned and researched based.

To assist with your ELL plan, Indiana is adopting the WIDA standards for ELL instruction. What are the WIDA standards? WIDA stands for World-Class Instruction Design and Assessment. As Indiana makes the transition to the WIDA standards, training and resources will be available to teachers. In the meantime, there are many resources available to you at the www.wida.us website. Some resources are free now and more will become available when Indiana becomes part of the WIDA consortium.

Of particular interest are the Can Do Descriptors located at http://www.wida.us/standards/CAN_DOs/ . These grade level specific charts will assist teachers in understanding what ELL students can do and should be expected to do based on their LAS Links score. For example, a student in grade 3-5 who is a LAS Links level 2 should be encourage to work on the following in writing: make lists from labels or with peers, complete/produce sentences from words banks or walls; fill in graphic organizers or charts, make comparison between using real-life or visually supported materials.

If you have an ELL student in class, you will find the Can Do lists helpful when you are scaffolding your instruction. More information will be forthcoming as the State continues to establish the implementation of the standards.

Avilla Elementary

Fourth grade has been busy, busy, busy! OUR students did a super job completing their ISTEP exams this week. We couldn’t have asked for a better effort from them. #waytogo4thgrade!

In connection with a special day tagged Absolutely Incredible Kid Day (March 15), OUR 4th grade parents sent a personal note of encouragement to their child, sealed in an envelope, to be read at school this past Friday. Students read the letters to themselves first, then there were offered an opportunity to read them to the class. At first, many were hesitant to share the letters aloud, but before we knew it, the majority of the kids WANTED to read their encouragement letters to an audience. Thank you, Parents, for completing your assignment! What a “fill the bucket” moment! We extend a special wish to all the kids at East Noble…Happy Absolutely Incredible Kid Weekend!

Mrs. Smith’s class has been up to something as well… After spending a couple of weeks sharing and doing activities about the 4 Rs (reduce, reuse, recycle, and rethink/repurpose), Rensselaer decided to embark on a school-wide recycling project: collecting juice pouches. They noticed there was a teracycle symbol (different from a Mobius loop) on the juice pouch box, and they could earn two cents a pouch! Next, the class talked about it’s worth to OUR school and the environment…would it be worth their time to collect? Are these a popular drink at lunch time or for treats in the classroom? It was a resounding “Yes!” So far they’ve collected, in a week’s time, about $3.00 worth of pouches which is about…150 pouches! RPI invites all of OUR juice pouch drinkers out there to “RESPECT THE POUCH!” Feel free to send them yours (until year’s end), or join them and make your own Pouch Brigade!

OUR school will be hosting a District Tech Open House on March 26. Parents and community members are invited to attend OUR building for two sessions. The first session is from 8:30-9:30 AM and the second session is from 9:45-10:45 AM. This is an excellent opportunity for OUR community to see how students and staff are using technology to increase student engagement and learning.

We would also like to remind OUR parents and students that on Monday, March 17th and March 24th there will be no collaboration. School will begin at 8:00 AM. This is part of our Snow-Make up plan. We have also rescheduled Spring Pictures for Friday, March 21st. Thank you to everyone for your patience as we continue to make up time from all the snow this season.

East Noble High School

The Project Lead the Way courses just wrapped up their national end of course assessment and most students did very well. We are looking forward to the students in the introductory levels moving on to the more advanced classes. These courses are challenging yet very rewarding. We offer 2 classes in engineering and 4 classes in biomedical sciences. The Kendallville News Sun recently highlighted one of the events of the Engineering class where students had to construct a boat and race this against other students at the YMCA pool.

All the Biology classes are studying genetics and molecular genetics this term along with Ecology and evolution. Students will be covering these topics in a variety of ways such as problem solving genetics, ethical discussion about genetic technology, simulations and other traditional methods as well. ECA testing will be later this year in May. This covers both terms of Biology.

Environmental science will be working on and presenting their “Acid Rain Pollution in the Adirondacks” group power point projects. This is a week-long project which entails much research and will be judged on content and presentation skills.

ENHS had a great showing at the Tech Fest competition with our math team winning first place. TechFest is Northeast Indiana’s annual one-day technology competition, college and career fair for the region’s high school students. More than 50 local high schools were invited to compete to win the coveted “TechFest Cup”, challenged with exciting problem-solving events, able to score points by attending career-enhancing breakout sessions with local experts and visit the “College & Career Expo” to meet managers and recruiters from local employers.

East Noble Middle School

What a week! We experienced a little bit of everything from temperatures in the 50’s to Mother Nature’s last round of snow (hopefully!) Our students completed the first round of ISTEP testing – the Applied Skills Assessment. The students did an outstanding job of staying focused during testing despite all the craziness. Overall our students felt they were well prepared and plan to keep motivated as we focus on the second round which will be here before we know it.

Wrestling season has ended with the team finishing fifth in conference. Our swim team will conclude their season next week with a conference meet at Carroll. The ENMS track team will begin practicing Monday, March 17. Good luck to our 7th and 8th bands as they compete at ISSMA this weekend at Garrett.

North Side Elementary

Over the past month, North Side Student Council members have been very busy with various fundraisers. Students took on the challenge of running a can food drive to help the Friendship Food Pantry. Students worked together to create posters and get students excited about bringing in cans.

Along with the food drive, students also sponsored a campaign for Pennies for Patients. Students plastered the hallways with posters and signs and helped decorate boxes for each classroom. It was great to see the staff getting involved in this great campaign as well. Mrs. Jenning’s matched every dollar that her classroom brought in! Way to go staff and students!

This month was also very busy as teachers and students prepared for ISTEP. As you walked the halls of our school, each classroom had a graph outside their door. The entire building had a competition to see which class could have the best attendance during these 2 weeks before ISTEP. Teachers would mark the percentage of students that were present in their class. Each day the “Golden Paw” attendance trophy would travel to the top classroom. Students who were here all day would also receive a treat and was entered into a drawing for various prizes.

Ms. Lawyer also helped students get excited for taking and passing ISTEP by visiting each individual classroom. She brought along her helpful “Golden ISTEP Wand.” During her visits with the class, each student would be given the special powers of the wand while also sharing a strategy that they will use when taking the test.

Rome City Elementary

This week in Ms. Doyle’s classroom students enjoyed a lot of interesting things! They did a lot this week with exploring shapes! They created shapes using straws and twist ties and had a really great time creating their own polygons after they created the ones required. Then the students used Shadow Puppet to explore the shapes in their classroom. They were to take a picture of a shape in the classroom and talk about it on shadow puppet. Then the students uploaded it to Ms. Doyle’s Kid Blog. We LOVE GEOMETRY FUN in first grade! J The students also put on their scientist goggles and took part in separating liquids. They have been working with matter for a few weeks now!

Students at Rome City did a great job with ISTEP this week. Each day of ISTEP the ISTEP students were greeted at the door by K-2 students with a motivational cheer. The students love all of the motivation given to them from the primary grades! Way to go Rome City students!

South Side Elementary

It is a week for artists at South Side. In Mrs. Mettert’s Music room, students have been learning how to play the recorder. Music Makers are also headed to FAME festival this weekend to perform at the Grand Wayne Center.

In addition to a number of students whose artwork was chosen for display, several South Side Trailblazers placed in the FAME fusion competition, where more than 40 schools compete each year. Kindergartener Covell Gurney won the contest for his category! His painting will be made into a poster and be on display at the Grand Wayne! Several other students also received honorable mentions, and they are: Kindergartener Gatilin Cain, 1st grader Ella Edwards, and 3rd grader Lynnea Gruszcrzyk.
Big image

Wayne Center Elementary

Wayne Center staff has been growing in their professional development with a training from Lance Yoder on how to use the Show Me app to create videos and with a presentation on two-column note taking. The teacher created videos can be used within the classroom or on their iPads when students take them home. They can be a great reference tool for our students. Two-column notes are a way of organizing important pieces of text and improving comprehension in students. This is a strategy that can be used across many subject areas including art, music, and gym.

The third grade classes are coming to a close on their Harriet Tubman extended text. With their recent knowledge of Harriet Tubman, students are beginning to compare and contrast different stories about her, use two-column notes as they read the Harriet Tubman book in Big Universe, write facts on Pages using evidence from the book, and create a timeline of her life. Did you know that March 10, 2014 was the 101st anniversary of her death? We are learning a lot in third grade!

Our students continue to work together to read for 1,000,000 minutes. This week our school total was 722,248 minutes. That means we are almost at our next goal of 750,000!

Grades 3 – 6 have been rising to the challenge this week and are using their test taking strategies as they complete the ISTEP assessment. It has been a great opportunity to show what they know.

Alternative Learning Center

A milestone was reached this week at the ALC, with the earning of this year’s 200th credit!!. Our numbers are up, and the new group of students started the Trimester working hard. Five credits have already been earned, though most of those were started Second Trimester. With the start of Third Trimester, crunch time has begun for the senior class and there will be many students working feverishly to complete the few remaining credits that stand between them and graduation. We wish all those students well, and we will keep you updated as they work toward graduation.