Curriculum & Instruction, Special Services and Instructional Technology Update
Curriculum and Instruction
Spring Parent Teacher Conferences
Students will be receiving their marking period 2 report cards on Friday, March 24, 2023. Our upcoming parent teacher conferences will be held on Wednesday, March 29, 2023 from 12:30-4:15 pm and on Tuesday, April 4, 2023 from 12:30-2:50 pm. Please note, both of these days are an 11:15 am dismissal for students.
Here is some information and questions to consider as you prepare for your upcoming conferences.
- Students are assigned report grades based on the content taught within that marking period.
- We utilized a standards based grading system, which means we look holistically at how a student is performing on class assignments, homework, formal assessments, projects and class discussions.
- When meeting with classroom teachers here are some questions you may want to ask:
- What is one goal my child is working toward for the end of the year?
- How can I help to support my child at home to help them meet their fullest potential?
- What is my child's current reading level and what type of texts would you recommend?
The home/school relationship is critical is supporting each child in their development. Our staff is here is answer any questions you may have about your child.
Redesign of the Quest Admission Process
As we prepare for the 2023-24 school year, the district reimagined the admission process to our Quest program to be more student driven. Ms. Epstein will be holding two virtual meetings at 12:00 pm on the days of the upcoming Parent Teacher Conferences. Below you will find the Google Meet access as well as an FAQ to provide more information about our Quest program.
Meeting for Students Entering 3rd grade in 2023-24
Wednesday March 29, 2023 @ 12:00pm
3rd Grade Quest Parent Meeting
Wednesday, March 29 · 12:00 – 12:30pm
Google Meet joining info
Video call link: https://meet.google.com/okb-rwhp-xsb
Or dial: (US) +1 662-727-5113 PIN: 317 552 453#
More phone numbers: https://tel.meet/okb-rwhp-xsb?pin=5405095387507
Meeting for Students Entering 4th-6th grade in 2023-24
Tuesday April 4, 2023 @ 12:00pm
4th-6th grade Quest Parent Meeting
Tuesday, April 4 · 12:00 – 12:30pm
Google Meet joining info
Video call link: https://meet.google.com/bvi-xhwa-vjm
Or dial: (US) +1 405-346-8232 PIN: 832 496 325#
More phone numbers: https://tel.meet/bvi-xhwa-vjm?pin=7166876577035
1.What is the Quest program?
Quest is a pull-out Enrichment program for students in grades 3-6 that meet for two periods per 6-day cycle. This program provides students the opportunity to collaborate with grade level peers at their school on 21st century projects that require students to apply problem solving skills, perseverance, critical thinking and strong communication skills. This is NOT a gifted and talented program.
2. How are students selected for this program?
For the 2023-24 school year the district is updating the admission process for Quest.
Phase 1- In early spring, teachers will be asked to make recommendations based upon the following criteria: performance on assignments, collaboration, motivation and active participation
Phase 2- Administration will review report card grades. Students should have 3+s and 4s in ELA and Math. Academic data is reviewed to check that students would not be in need of academic support services.
Phase 3- Students who meet the requirements of Phase 1 and 2 will be invited to apply. Information will be shared with those families via Parent Square.
Phase 4- Student applications that are accepted will be invited to participate in a small group task in June. During the task, students will be observed and assessed on their creativity, communication, collaboration and critical thinking. .
*Students entering grade 3 will engage in a task at the start of the new school year.
3. If my child is currently in Quest will they remain in Quest next year?
As in the past, there is no automatic re-enrollment in Quest. All students will need to go through the process outlined in question 2.
4. When will I find out if my child has been accepted into the Quest program?
For students entering grades 4-6, we intend to notify families at the end of the school year. For students entering grade 3, families will be notified in early October. If this timeline changes we will update families via Parent Square.
5. What opportunities are there for enrichment if my child is not accepted into the Quest program?
Last year we revamped our Enrichment for All program in the district. Ms. Galgano is our enrichment specialist that pushes into every class in the district. Each class in Kindergarten-5th grade receives one marking period of Enrichment for All, in addition to their daily special. Ms. Galgano works with students to develop 21st century thinking and application skills. Students engage in hands-on projects aligned to grade level curriculum. Our 6th grade students receive two marking periods of Enrichment for All. The first marking period is focused on financial literacy and the second marking period students explore possible career pathways.
Family Connections Activity for April
We are very excited to have our first in-person, hands on workshop since the COVID-19 pandemic. Play Pattern will be in district on the evening of Thursday April 27, 2023 to host a STEAM activity for our families. They have previously hosted two virtual events, making your own ice cream and building a marble run. During our April event, families will learn how to make a simple circuit night light.
There will be two sessions held on this evening. The first session is geared toward PreK-2nd grades from 6:00-6:45 pm and the second session is geared toward 3rd-6th grade from 7:00-7:45 pm. Families with multiple children can select either session to attend. This workshop will be held at the Washington Avenue Kindergarten Center located at 150 Washington Avenue.
Families Must Sign Up by Tuesday April 4, 2023. Each session will be limited to the number of participants based upon space.
2023-24 School Calendar
On Monday, February 13, 2023, the 2023-24 school calendar was approved by the Board of Education. The first day of school for students for the 2023-24 school year will be on Friday September 1, 2023. The calendar will be posted on our district website under the calendars tab.
"Discover the Fun of Math Together!" Booth
Game night in your house can be fun while enhancing your child's math skills. Family fun and learning at the same time! AIS Math Teachers shared tips and resources.
"Game On!" Booth
Get your GAME on! Research shows that using games in teaching can help increase student participation, foster social and emotional learning, and motivate students to take risks. District 30 offers various platforms for students to play learning games.
Taste of Service Family Fair
This Tuesday, March 21, 2023 the district hosted our Annual District-wide Taste of Service Parent Fair at Shaw Avenue School. Approximately 100 parents participated with their children. There were informational booths with take home resources and interactive family engagement activities to learn more about the district's variety of supports & services available to all students. Teachers, support staff, and administrators from all three schools were in attendance. Throughout the night, our Global Student Leaders of Tomorrow displayed their innovation, critical thinking, creativity and collaboration by participating in activities such as creating their own digital books, showcasing their learning of flying drones and building Lego robotics.
Check-out: Digital Book Created by our Students
We are also excited to share our students who videoed this special event are in the process of editing and will be debuting the Taste of Service Trailer in the very near future.
Helping Our Students Combat Test Anxiety
Prior to an exam, most students experience some degree of anxiety. Feelings of nervousness before a test is to be expected. It is the body’s normal biological and psychological response to stress. However, for some students, anxiety can impact their ability to concentrate and perform successfully on exams. Test anxiety is a feeling someone might have in a situation where performance really counts or when the pressure's on to do well. Causes of test anxiety may include a fear of failure, lack of adequate prep time, or bad experiences taking tests in the past. Sometimes test anxiety is often triggered by adults overemphasizing the importance of end-of-year testing. You want your child to perform well, but making the test a big deal will have the opposite effect. Therefore, encourage your child to do their best, but remind them that one test won’t make or break their future. The test is just a snapshot of where they are in their learning journey. Tell your children that they will be loved and valued no matter what test scores they earn. You may think they already know this, but children still need to hear it. Explain to them that this test will provide helpful information about what they are great at and what they still need to practice. That means as long as they do their best, the test is contributing to their learning and growth.
Helpful Links for More Information to help your child:
Mark Your Calendar: Afternoon Tea Time with Dr. Schimpf, Director of Special Services
Join me on Monday April 3, 2023 at 3:15pm for our next chat via Google Meet
Here is the link: meet.google.com/ddx-nofc-wsv
Bring All Your QUESTIONS or just drop by to share some of any FEEDBACK. The Special Services is always reflecting on how we are doing as a department and interested in hearing ideas how we can best support our families.
At our last meeting (3/6/23), a few parents dropped by with some questions about upcoming Annual Reviews and transitioning to VSCHSD.
Also feel free to email me at email@example.com or call 516-434-3600, ext. 5233 if you have a specific question or concern about your child's special education services OR if you want to learn more about the special education referral process.
21st Century and Instructional Technology
Valley Stream 30 Student Audio/Video Club
Recently, we have begun piloting an audio/video club at Forest Road with the goal of children learning the process of recording and creating digital media. The students in the Forest Road Audio/Video Club (led by Mrs. Christine Ryan - building technology aide), attended the district Taste of Service in March, captured terrific footage of students, staff, and families engaging in the night, and worked with Mrs. Ryan to create a video montage using the iMovie software. Aligned with our strategic plan, this unique learning experience provides children with an opportunity to leverage technology to cultivate their 21st Century Learning Skills, as well as a taste of the audio/video communications industry. With how successful this club has been this year at Forest Road, we will be looking to expand this into all three buildings for the 2023-2024 school year. Please enjoy the video!
Computer Science Digital Fluency Pilot Begins in 2nd Grade!
This month we have begun our district's Computer Science Standards/Digital Proficiency pilot with (2) second grade classes - Mrs. Lapera (Forest Road) and Mrs. Simpson-O’Neal (Clear Stream Avenue). The technology aides at these buildings (Mrs. Ryan and Mrs. Gutierrez) have been working with the Mrs. Lapera and Mrs. Simpson-O’Neal to schedule push-ins during I/E periods to work with small groups of students on various device skills, such as recording a voice memo (click to view students at work from this lesson), zooming in and out of pictures (click to view students at work from this lesson), personalizing their control center with device shortcuts, and taking a screen recording. Click HERE for a list of more of the 2nd grade learning objectives. This initiative was developed in alignment with the District Strategic Plan: Goal 4: Information, Media, and Technology Skills: Develop the digital skills of K-2 students.
At the end of the pilot in June, students will be taking the Digital Proficiency Benchmark to assess their proficiency of the skills taught. This data will then be assessed and feedback from the technology aides and teachers will be used to refine the benchmark practice, so it is ready for deployment next school year.
Data Protection Reminders
Jennifer Lewner, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction
firstname.lastname@example.org (516) 434-3600 ext.5229
Dr. Nicole Schimpf, Director of Special Services
email@example.com (516) 434-3600 ext.5232
Christopher Onorato, Director of 21st Century Learning and Technology
firstname.lastname@example.org (516) 434-3600 ext.5001