ENSC Family Notes
September 8, 2014
Technology and eLearning - Flex Days
Recently, I was asked to submit some information about technology in the ENSC schools. One of the questions is related to how we promote the use of technology in the classroom. The 2014-2015 school year marks the start of the fourth year for all students to have a technology device to use in the classroom. Access to the web and other applications has become embedded in our school and community culture. It is a natural part of instruction and an expectation of our community, students, families, and area business and industry. Technology as a part of learning is a normal part of the school day.
When registering students for school this year, families were asked to indicate their access to the Internet. Results indicate about 86 percent of our students do have access to the Internet at home. High school and middle school students were most connected with over 94 percent. During the past three years, our communities have also increased public access to the internet in libraries, restaurants, and downtown Kendallville.
It is also interesting, last winter during all of the ridiculous school weather cancellations, families were asking and expecting ENSC to hold elearning days. With all students having access to a device and the level of integration that is used in the classroom, families believe that ENSC students and staff are ready and able to hold valuable eLearning opportunities from home.
Last May, the Indiana Department of Education allowed school districts to apply for eLearning (Flex) days to be used in place regular school days. ENSC was one of 12 school districts approved for these Flex days. We plan to schedule two eLearning days during the school year. One will be for grades K-12 and one will be for grades 9-12. During the K-12 day, ENSC teachers will have an opportunity to participate in professional develop while staying in contact with students. The day used for grades 9-12 will allow seniors o complete their graduation exit interviews during one day rather than spreading them over several months.
East Noble's approval for Flex days gives us additional flexibility in using eLearning this winter in place of cancelling school due to poor weather. This information will come later.
Referendum Projects - FAQ 1
How do we vote for/against the project?
The Noble County Election Board has approved the legally mandated question to be on the ballot for the November 4, 2014 election. All registered voters in the East Noble School Corporation district may participate in the election. How the question is worded is determined by legislation and will be as follows:
"Shall East Noble School Corporation issue bonds or enter into a lease to finance the construction of a new East Noble Middle School and mechanical and roof improvements to East Noble High School, which is estimated to cost not more than $37,880,000 and is estimated to increase the property tax rate for debt service by a maximum of $0.3547 per $100 of assessed valuation over the 20 year life of the bonds?"
An increase of $.3547 per $100 of assessed valuation is an increase from zero and less than the tax rate ENSC taxpayers are paying today. When ENSC begins to pay for the middle school and high school projects, their current debt will be paid off. See the next question.
School Board Meeting Week
- Approval of the 2015 Budget
- Approval of revised 2014-2015 school calendar. (2015 Graduation date is set along with eLearning dates)
- An update on the ENHS JAG Program
As always, you are welcome to attend any meetings.
All Star of the Week
Allison Miller is Rome City’s All Star of the week! Allison is in her second year as an Instructional Assistant. She not only is an Instructional Assistant she is a volunteer and a parent. Allison, currently works with first and second grade. She is at school early every day and stays later every day. She even comes back in the evening when events are going on to volunteer her time, whether her kids are involved in the event or not.
Allison is one of those people who live and breathe being a Roman. When she is not clocked in, she is always around and always willing to help no matter what. Allison is a jack of all trades, helps students, delivers transportation notices, substitutes as an office assistant, and anything else we need, Allison is always around saying “Is there anything you need help with?” She is definitely a people person and loves to make people laugh. Her enthusiasm and energy that she displays is perfect for the atmosphere at Rome City. Thank you Allison Miller, for being such a dedicated person and for being willing to assist with anything.
A Few links Worth a Look
Connected Educator Month Activities - http://connectededucators.org/calendar/
Don't Ban Bubble Gum - http://tinyurl.com/BubbleGumActivities
Blog Posts from one of our own - principal-p.weebly.com
Building and Curriculum News
This week, I was reading a newsletter blog from Joan Moser of The 2 Sisters entitled It’s Over My Head. She described how it feels to be a teacher, especially when you are learning something new on top of the plethora of things to attend to at the beginning of the school year. She went on to share the emotions of feeling both excited but overwhelmed at the same time when we feel like there is so much to do but simply not enough time. Joan then offered these tips:
So what can we do, as teachers at the beginning of the year, to set ourselves up for success?
- Find a learning support group: friends, colleagues, learners in or near our own school or far via technology.
- Take on a reasonable amount of new learning at a time. Spiral back before you add new components in order to secure your new learning.
- Keep the goal in mind and take it in small chunks, one step at a time.
- And of course, enjoy the process. Teaching is at times invigorating and sometimes taxing, yet rewarding.
I found this list very thought provoking and pertinent. These were great reminders that it is ok to slow down, break things into chunks, and give ourselves permission to not be perfect at things all of the time. So, as the honeymoon of the beginning of the year starts to wear off, remember to take things day by day, reflect on the good and challenging parts of the day, and end the day with a positive thought and a plan for tomorrow.
Rome City Elementary
Mrs. Opper’s sixth grade class received a very generous gift from the University of Alabama. They sent an entire set of shirts for each one in the class along with lanyards, pens, lapel pins, and a poster. The students were so excited about receiving their shirts! They love wearing them on college day. They definitely are learning “after high school comes college.”
Second grade learned about maps and place in the world. Early in the week the second graders learned what maps show, how to use them, and even made maps of their classroom! They also did a craft called “Me on the Map” that helps them remember they are part of Rome City and the world.
Twenty-two families came to first grade parent night! One of the biggest families grade level nights we have had! Ms. Ruse and Mrs. Friend shared pictures of what the students are doing in class and let the kids tell their parents all about it. They also shared with parents the homework procedures, reading, writing and overall learning goals for the year, while the kids had a great time playing in the gym. At the end of the evening, 2 families took home a door prize.
South Side Elementary
We have lots of great things happening in South Side Related Arts! Students in Mrs. Mossburg’s and Mrs. Stohlman’s art classes began the year with art activities that demonstrated their knowledge and skills. Students are working to complete or have completed their first projects. 6th grade art students just finished a painting similar to the style of prehistoric or cave art. Mrs. Mossburg’s Kindergarten, 1st and 3rd grades are working on figure drawing skills and self-portraits. Fourth graders are working on showing space and distance in a drawing while 5th grade is focusing on linear perspective.
Mr. Johnston’s Music classes are reviewing note reading skills in 5th and 6th grade by using “Cup Rhythm Explorations” while K, 1, and 2 are reviewing and solidifying singing on pitch using “high and low” voices. All classes are also exploring the beginnings of Rock and Roll starting with the 1950’s and how at first, the style wasn’t all that popular.
Currently, our media classes are enjoying read-alouds each day when our students come to the library. In addition, our students our focusing on building stamina as they enjoy the books that they choose on a weekly basis. Our younger students enjoy sharing their book choices with their classmates as they also work on building stamina.
Our South Side Musicians in Mrs. Mettert’s room have been learning to cooperate together to make music focusing on the pillar of Respect. Students have reviewed rhythm patterns and played them on instruments to accompany a song.
In our PE classes this week, students have started an at home activity that encourages kids to eat healthy and exercise every day. Mrs. Lantz has begun a program encouraging students to exercise for 60 minutes each day throughout the month of September. When a student completes 10 hours of activity he/she will bring back her “sneakers paper,” showing the hours of activity completed. The data will be displayed on a bar graph outside the guidance wall. The class with the most returned and completed papers will get a free PE day and will get to decide what we do in class that day!
Wayne Center Elementary
The Wayne Center first graders have been hard at work learning the rules and procedures for first grade. Every Wednesday Mrs. Munk from the library is going to come visit the first graders to do science activities. This week she came in and taught the students about the five senses. The students learned about the sense of sight and made I Spy bags. The students also got to use their sense of sight and read I Spy books. The first grade teachers have also started their unit on pioneers. The students have learned that pioneers did not have a Wal-Mart or Scotts to walk into so they had to make everything themselves. The first grade teachers will be having Pioneer Day where students will get to experience the life of a pioneer at the end of the unit.
The school fundraiser kick off was Friday. The students are selling frozen food and other items. The more they sell the more prizes they will receive. The school will also earn money that will be used for the many activities and incentives provided for students. The Wayne Center Tigers are looking forward to a GREAT year!
Alternative Learning Center
A short, but busy week at the ALC! Thank you to Mr. Stinson for covering for Mrs. Justus while she was away learning about the Underground Railroad with her daughter at Camp Potawatomi. Mr. Stinson also helped get some security updates installed in the building while he was there. Gary Baker from Impact started meeting with seniors this week to help keep them focused on graduation and he will continue to meet with them throughout the school year. Diane Shoppell was also in the building this week, from the Before 5 program, to meet with our already parents and parents-to-be. The group learns about parenting children under the age of 5 years old and stages of development along the way. This group meets monthly for the remainder of the year. Students are continuing to earn credits and be successful academically. The “College Spirit Day” is catching on with students as shown in the photo below.
OUR Kindergarten is off to an amazing start learning many procedures and routines. We are working hard on our independence and building stamina as we learn our Daily 5 components! We would like to welcome Mr. Hoffman, OUR student teacher, to OUR Avilla Kindergarten group. He has so much to share with us and we love reading and writing with him. In a few weeks we will be going to Orchard Hill Farms to learn about apples. We are excited for this hands on experience.
OUR Kindergarten students are learning many cool things in tech class so for this year. In Mrs. Eggleston's class only - ABCmouse and they absolutely loved it. Next week, Miller's Class will be learning ABCmouse. Mrs. Eggleston's class is entered into the sum dog contest we are going to try it out and see how it goes.
East Noble High School
The Round Table Café is open for the school year. When you come for lunch you get all-you-can-eat salad bar, soup, bread, and dessert for $6. They are located directly across the hall from Room 330. It is asked that you send an email to Suzette White at email@example.com to make a reservation. Don’t worry, there is plenty of room! Come enjoy a nice homemade lunch and help support EN students with their vocational training. The Café will soon be offering Pre-paid Lunch Punch Cards, buy 5 meals get your 6th meal free. If you wish to continue paying per-meal, we will have a Frequently Dinner Card with buy 5 meals get your 6th meal free. They also have gift certificates if you would like to purchase a meal for someone else. If you are interested ask our host/hostess or e-mail Suzette White, Kim Luke-Scherer, or Laura Bolinger.
This week’s menu is breakfast!! They will have sausage gravy and biscuits, tater-egg casserole, Coffee Cake, and fruit.
East Noble Middle School
This week at ENMS the 8th graders went to Stone’s Trace in Ligonier. They were able to experience some of the things that the early pioneers experienced. How to build a home without power tools, making their own cloth, and blacksmithing.
Digital citizenship this week has included learning Windows 8 programs and organization. Students are gaining information to be able to keep their computer updated and organized so that they can use them more effectively.
We are looking forward to our Speaker on Monday from Rachel’s Challenge, brought to us by our F. O. R. Club (Friends of Rachel an anti-bullying club)
North Side Elementary
This week at North Side 5th graders had the opportunity to spend a long, hot, sweaty day at Camp Potawotami. Students learned about life before iPhones, participated in team building activities, and even learned the right way to fold the Flag. They finished the long day as participants in the underground railroad. A special thanks to all the parent volunteers, the YMCA, all the staff there, and to Mrs. Jennings and Ms. Wilder who helped organize this trip. This experience was one that won't be soon forgot by all involved. Like us on Facebook to see more pictures from this fun and meaningful day!