Team Trailblazer Weekly Update

November 30, 2015

Big image

Conver-Stations and the Stand Up Game

As you all know...teaching in a virtual environment takes out of the box thinking. Effective strategies that work in a live brick and mortar classroom often can work very well in our virtual classrooms with some additional creativity.

How about Conver-stations? How could this put a twist on your break out room conversations?

Stand Up Game? How could this look in one of your early morning classes?

Let me know - send me a recording if you are willing!

Big image
Big image

Best Wishes!

We wish science teacher, Greg Smith and his bride well as they tie the knot on December 5!
Big image


We congratulate ELA teacher, Jenni Kanine, on the birth of her son, Brody, on Friday, November 27! What a precious face! Jenni and Brody are both doing well.
Big image
Big image

New students on 11/30


1804079 Dyke 7th Grade 11/30/2015

1813535 Fell 7th Grade 11/30/2015

1798364 Holle 7th Grade 11/30/2015

1814043 Jordan 7th Grade 11/30/2015

1820197 Overholt 7th Grade 11/30/2015

1820493 Schultz 7th Grade 11/30/2015

1816311 Acosta 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1814838 Alvarado 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1798678 Brackin 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1818346 Dempsey 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1810780 Farmer 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1815841 Godfrey 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1820623 Gomez 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1345190 Gomez 8th Grade 11/30/2015

649684 Irwin 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1799926 Khan 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1809067 Knox 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1809937 Krasinski 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1815999 Mench 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1818860 Nowak 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1817916 Owens 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1212006 Pervine 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1812221 Sanchez 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1810308 Thysse 8th Grade 11/30/2015

1817024 Chatzaras 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1798867 Christopher 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1808691 Cox 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1809782 Dolland 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1681695 Fry 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1806693 Phenix 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1800835 Posgate 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1809917 Sanford 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1790220 Shafer 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1802361 Stansberry 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1808366 Starkweather 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1813936 Villanueva 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1761648 Wiard lll 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1445369 Yert 9th Grade 11/30/2015

1343545 Coleman 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1811574 Davis 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1814704 Davis 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1810791 Densmore 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1819349 DeShong Jr. 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1811152 DiNardo 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1610077 Fell 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1819128 Herd 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1820790 Herge 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1815064 Latting 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1812095 Leutz 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1808806 Marsh 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1538480 McConkey 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1815256 Nakajima 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1808585 Peace 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1815011 Rosado 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1812939 Thompson 10th Grade 11/30/2015

1813623 Harvey 11th Grade 11/30/2015

1404186 Judson 11th Grade 11/30/2015

1812344 Leech 11th Grade 11/30/2015

1448101 Raymond 11th Grade 11/30/2015

1808728 Whitney 11th Grade 11/30/2015

1813987 Yule 11th Grade 11/30/2015

1801134 Brooks 12th Grade 11/30/2015

1796104 Leggitt 12th Grade 11/30/2015

Big image

We are looking forward to hosting you next week - please read the info below regarding additional details!

PD - Diversity Training and Holiday Fun!

Thursday, Dec. 10th, 1:30-8:30pm

146 Monroe Center Street Northwest

Grand Rapids, MI

We look forward to seeing you soon!

We will be meeting at the McKay Towers in the Ballroom.

There is a parking garage across the street.

We will start at 1:30 with our PD. Please feel free to arrive between 1:00 and 1:15.

Our afternoon will be spent going through diversity training with Andrea Kitomary.

Dinner will be served at 5:30 and our evening will include some holiday fun - see below!

Bring your smile and sense of humor for our photo booth!

Big image

Holiday Sock Mixer on Thursday evening at PD!

We request that everyone brings a pair of holiday socks along with a bag of holiday goodies that will be used to stuff the socks throughout the evening.

Guests will first stuff the matching sock into the other sock.

Over the course of the evening, everyone will trade socks and stuff one of their goodies into it as we mingle.

This goes on until the socks are stuffed with treats.

Lastly, everyone gathers to trade the socks one last time.

Everyone can then break out their goodies and wear their new socks to PD on Friday!

PD - Instructional Rounds - NOTE NEW START TIME

Friday, Dec. 11th, 8am-4pm

1800 East Beltline Avenue Southeast

Grand Rapids, MI

Parking is found right outside the Prince Conference Center and it is free of charge.

Breakfast will be served from 8-8:30 and we will begin our PD at 8:30 am.

K12's Chief Academic Officer, Dr. Margie Jorgensen, will be working with us on Friday morning before we break out for our instructional rounds with Summer Shelton and our instructional coaches.

Lunch is served at noon.

We will wrap up the day by 4:00. Please bring your expense receipts as noted below on Friday to PD.

Let's keep it festive with an ugly Christmas sweater contest on Friday!

What to bring to PD please!

1. laptop

2. headset

3. power strip if you have one

4. moderator and participant links

To prepare for the Instructional Rounds PD on Dec. 11th, teachers will need to pull their external moderator and participant links from their teacher OLS accounts to have ready to go Friday morning. We recommend saving the links in a Word document and/or emailing the links to him or her-self, so that it is easy to find and share.

This 5 minute tutorial walks teachers through the process:

If you have questions, please reach out to your IC.

And don't forget your sweater and holiday socks...

Big image

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 11 - LET'S ENJOY THE SEASON with an ugly Christmas sweater contest on Friday! Please wear them to PD!

Dress Code for PD

Here is what has been approved for PD next week:


We will follow the corporate policy for Thursday afternoon/evening for business casual:

Corporate-Casual Dress Code Examples:

Slacks, Pants, and Suit Pants: Slacks, such as Dockers, wool pants, flannel pants, long dressy/dress shorts, dressy capris, and dressy synthetic pants are acceptable. Inappropriate: jeans, sweatpants, exercise pants, Bermuda shorts, short shorts, bib overalls, leggings, and any spandex or other form-fitting workout pants

Skirts, Dresses, and Skirted Suits: Casual dresses, skirts, and skirts that are split at or below the knee. Length should be at a length at which an individual can sit comfortably in public. Inappropriate: Short, tight skirts with long slits, mini-skirts, skorts, beach dresses, and spaghetti-strap dresses

Shirts, Tops, Blouses, and Jackets: Casual shirts, dress shirts, sweaters, tops, golf-type shirts, and turtlenecks are appropriate. Inappropriate: tank tops; midriff tops; shirts with potentially offensive words, terms, logos, pictures, cartoons, or slogans; halter-tops; tops with bare shoulders; sweatshirts, and t-shirts unless worn under another blouse, shirt, jacket, or dress

Shoes and Footwear: Conservative athletic or walking shoes, loafers, clogs, sneakers, boots, flats, dress heels, and leather deck-type shoes are acceptable. Inappropriate: flip-flops, bare feet, and/or slippers


JEANS and your holiday sweater or business casual as outlined above : )


Big image


Our mileage, hotel and parking for Thursday is paid for through our grant through MDE. We will be filling out those reports out together on Friday afternoon.

Please bring:

1. Hotel receipt

2. Mapquest mileage printout for your trip to GR and back home

3. Parking receipt from Thursday PD


Big image

K12 Travel Policy - new as of December 1, 2015

Attention K12 Travelers –

We are pleased to announce that after careful consideration, we have chosen Atlas Travel as K12’s new travel agency! Atlas Travel is an award-winning, full-service travel and meetings management company, headquartered in Milford, Massachusetts. Since 1986, Atlas Travel has been managing travel programs for companies around the globe, and we’re proud to partner with Atlas to bring you access to their industry-leading travel tools, and world-class customer service.

Effective on December 1, 2015, Atlas will become your go-to resource for travel arrangements, as we transition to their travel management team.

With the transition to Atlas Travel; our online booking tool, Concur, will be offline starting Monday, November 23rd until Tuesday, December 1st. During this time, all of your current Concur profiles, preferences, and current travel bookings will be transferred from World Travel to Atlas Travel. Any and all reservations must be booked directly through a World Travel agent during this time. You can call (877)439-6312 to talk to a dedicated travel consultant to handle any and all travel booking needs during the blackout period.

In order to ensure a smooth transition, we have scheduled 3 on-site and webinar training/Q&A sessions on December 1st. The times are provided below:

· 9:00 am

· 1:00 pm

· 3:00 pm

We have attached calendar invitations for each training session. To add these to your calendar please click on one of the attached invitations and select accept. If you have already accepted a training time, please do not accept it again as we are trying to get a head count on who will be attending each session.

Be on the lookout for more information on the overall transition as we get closer to December 1st. Please contact with any questions you may have.

Happy travels,

K12 Human Resources

Big image

FAST Updates for Grades 7-12 - NEW


FAST will be taking care of monitoring all Strong Start items, including ORN/OLL, welcome calls, first student log in and first LC log in.

We will not be moving HR teachers' kids from their current ORN sections. FAST is working on creating a plan to transition those sections over to FASLs. All new students will now be fully monitored by Marla Baldwin, Family Engagement Coordinatory, in all of our Strong Start metrics.

**HR teachers/all teachers are still responsible for ILP action items. This has not changed. Please continue to mark individualized actions as they happen - thank you! **

Tracker Referrals for Academics:

You may or may not have noticed that all of our 7-12 homerooms now have a FASL assigned to them. If you don't know who your FASL is yet, please see below.

Moving forward, FASLs attached to your HR students will be the only ones making academic referrals into the FAST Tracker. They will be monitoring their assigned students through the tracker and will be making referrals as needed. HR teachers are no longer making academic referrals.

We are moving back a bit towards our system that we used last year at the HS.

If you have not had interactions with your assigned FASL, please reach out and introduce yourself. They will be working closely with your HR students.

CONNECT Counselor Referrals:

Any teacher who encounters a student need that would require intervention from Dave or Mike, will still make a referral to the FAST Tracker or if it is urgent, a phone call to Dave or Mike.

Here are the official FASL assignments as of 12/7:

6-7 Todd

8 Bingle

9 Korhorn and Redzic, A.

10 Kahssai

11 Redzic, M.

12 Hines and Freel

Big image

Let's hear it for Zee Wiegand - teacher of the week in the northern region! Kudos also go to Robin Moore for the work she does each day with her students in Class Connect! We are proud of you!

Big image

Verizon App Challenge

Check it out!

Halp App:

Class Connections:

Thank you to Nicole Ehle for supporting and encouraging our students in this challenge!

Big image

Testing Info

There are 2 attachments in this email regarding state testing. These are going to out to families early this week.
Big image

Intacct - Starting on December 7

The board officially approved the use of the new expense system, Intacct, at the meeting last week.

Finance is officially launching on December 7 and our November monthly expenses will be submitted through Intacct.

Here is the email from finance that we received today - we will only be using Intacct for our monthly internet expenses along with other expenses within your allotted $100.

From Finance:

As a reminder we are planning to transition your school to the new Intacct accounting system starting on Monday, December 7th.

· Process Changes

o Teachers, please begin to enter your internet expenses into Intacct on 12/7.

o If you have questions regarding any of the processes in Intacct you can click on the help feature for that particular process, or you can contact us at

· Support

o Please report any issues to A ticket will be created and tracked until the issue is resolved.

If you do not receive a login and password by 12/7, or experience any issues with your login please send an email to


Big image

Did you miss this PD?

From Summer:


Please watch this recording and fill out the exit ticket before December 4, 2015. You will receive a certificate of participation upon successful completion of the exit ticket.

Upcoming Virtual PD with Summer

Student Growth in Sessions of 50+ Students

Friday, Dec. 4th, 8:30-9:15am

This is an online event.

Student Growth in Sessions of 50+ Students


Friday, Dec. 4th, 8:30-9:15am


This is an online event.

More information
Hooray! Everyone came to class! Now, how do I teach to 182 students!!!???


Wednesday, Dec. 9th, 2:30-3:15pm

This is an online event.



Wednesday, Dec. 9th, 2:30-3:15pm


This is an online event.

More information
Academic feedback is a gift. Sometimes it feels like a year old fruitcake from your Great Aunt Martha, but it's still a gift. Let's collaborate on growing and using all of the gifts we receive.

December PD at GVSU

Below are workops taking place before Christmas. Before the new year, be sure to get in a few more professional development workshops. We will be focusing on technology, math and classroom management.

Click on the date you would like to attend to register for each workshop.

All workshops for the year are also listed on the GVSU CSO website at and most have SCECHs available for an additional cost of $15.

**FREE for schools authorized by GVSU
Starting at $75/person for non-GVSU schools

Pinterest Party - Share and Receive Ideas
Grand Rapids: December 1
Detroit: December 3

5:00-7:00pm (dinner provided)

Participants of this fun workshop will help add to the GVSUCSO Pinterest boards while gaining ideas for their own classroom. The GVSUCSO board is for teachers to use when lesson planning and connecting ideas with the NWEA learning continuum statements.

Nonviolent Crisis Intervention
Grand Rapids: December 17
Detroit: December 3

9:00am-3:00pm (lunch included)

Nonviolent Crisis Intervention training is for teachers and staff members who interact with students on a daily basis. More than 8 million professionals world wide have participated in this program to learn how to resolve conflict at the earliest possible stage. Nonviolent Crisis Intervention is known world wide for its innovative, holistic philosophy of providing Care, Welfare, Safety, and Security for staff and those in their care-even during crisis moments. This program is now recognized by many as the international standard for violence prevention and intervention training.

Middle/High School Assessments & Interventions
Detroit: December 3

9:00am-3:00pm (lunch included)

This workshop is designed to help 6th-12th grade teachers combat deficiencies found in reading, writing and spelling. Teachers will better understand and be able to pinpoint exactly where the cracks in their students’ reading, writing and spelling foundation occur. Once these are identified, then specific interventions can be used in order to fill in those cracks. This workshop will focus on 3 interventions (3rd Edition of the REWARDS program, phonemic awareness activities and the use of Newsela) and 3 assessments (Word ID: Assessment across the Content Areas, Assessing Reading Multiple Measures and Spelling Assessments)

Lexile - Creating Student Booklists
Grand Rapids: December 7
Detroit: December 9


During this hands-on, interactive workshop participants will use NWEA MAP data to create booklists for individual students.

Tech Tools and Teaching Tricks
Grand Rapids: December 8
Detroit: December 10

10:00am - 2:00pm (lunch included)

Bring your laptops, cell phones, gmail account, and your imagination as we rapid fire through TONS of online tools and website available to teachers FOR FREE! Experience using the technology from a student's perspective and engage like you've never thought possible. We will introduce, explore, and discuss tools, tricks, and ideas you can bring back to your classroom to utilize IMMEDIATELY. Many of these FREE technologies can be used together to create an even more powerful experience for teachers, parents, and students. There will be time to explore and showcase tips/trick/tools that you are currently using in their classrooms or that you discover during the workshop!

Mathematics Literacy Crosswalk
Grand Rapids: December 10
12:30 - 3:30pm

With a little planning, integrating the Common Core State Standards for ELA and Mathematics is easy! Learn to quickly vary rigor for an optimal student learning experience.

Audience: 1st-8th grade

Unwrapping the ELA Common Core Standards
Detroit: December 10

10:00am-2:00pm (lunch included)

What are Close Reading, Text Complexity, or Text Dependent Questions? During this interactive workshop participants will take a closer look at these components of the ELA Standards and what they mean to the classroom teacher. How do you successfully use the English Language Key Components in conjunction with the Common Core grade level standards in reading, writing, speaking & listening and language? How do you infuse these standards into your literacy instruction in a realistic and efficient manner? These questions and more will be answered at the workshop.

MAP© 102 - Proctor Training
Grand Rapids: December 15
Detroit: December 17

5:00 - 7:00pm (dinner included)

This is an evening workshop for those who are NEW to proctoring the NWEA web-based assessment. Participants will be introduced to the steps of preparing the system for testing as well as proctoring a live test. Participants will also experience the test from the student's perspective and sample a computer adaptive test. Multiple testing scenarios will be covered so proctors know the best way to handle all situations. This is a hands-on workshop that takes place in a computer lab. No need to bring your own computer.


Please contact Erin Abel at 616-331-9094 or
Big image

Interim 2

Grades 7 and 8: Heather and Cassandra have the next round of ELA and math interims to distribute to you early this week.

HS will be assigning IA2 early December!

Big image

Winter Break

Monday, Dec. 21st, 8am to Friday, Jan. 1st 2016 at 5pm

This is an online event.


Tiffany is at the MEMSPA Conference in Kalamazoo Wednesday - Friday this week!