Iroquois Middle School

MAY/JUNE 2022 NEWSLETTER

FROM THE PRINCIPAL

Dear Iroquois Families:


It is hard to believe that May is already here. These last months of the school year are always busy times both at school and at home. Please remember to take a close look at the calendar in this newsletter. It contains important dates for many important upcoming events, including spring concerts, field trips, PTSA events and the Sixth-Grade Outdoor Education event—just to list a few. You will also find information regarding upcoming visitations and orientations, held to prepare parents and students for the next school year. Please join us for these important events as we work with you to make grade-to-grade transitions as smooth as possible.


I also want to take this opportunity to communicate with you about the School-Based Planning Team here at Iroquois. This team—like those at our fellow schools throughout the District—is intended to provide an opportunity for members of the school community to engage in shared decision-making. Members of the team work together to solve problems, define courses of action, and shape the direction of our school. Each year, this work is centered around the development of our school-based plan, a “living document,” if you will, that sets specific, measurable goals for our school community as well as a plan of action to achieve those goals and the evidence we will use to measure our progress.


In addition to a number of teachers and myself, the team is also made up of one parent representative. This year marks the end of the term for our current parent rep, Anne Flanigen. Anne has been a valuable part of the team. She has consistently provided a thoughtful perspective, a strong voice for parents and families, and a constant care and concern for our students and their success. We are very grateful for her service on the team and we are sad to see her term come to an end.


However, we are also excited to ask for your help in identifying a member of our parent community who would be willing to take on this role for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 school years. If this is something you may be interested in, please complete the application below. It is due Friday, May 27. Hard copies can be submitted in the main office or you can also email them directly to me at Christian_Zwahlen@westiron.monroe.edu. Thank you for considering serving in this important role.


Finally, I look forward to seeing you at our upcoming concerts, orientations, and year-end events in the weeks ahead. Please don’t hesitate to call me at 336-0804 with any concerns or questions.


Sincerely,


Christian Zwahlen

IROQUOIS CONTACT INFORMATION

Principal: Mr. Christian Zwahlen | christian_zwahlen@westiron.monroe.edu

Secretary: Ms. Susan Glastonbury | susan_glastonbury@westiron.monroe.edu

Main office: 585-336-0804

Fax: 585-336-3042

Website: https://irq.westirondequoit.org/

Health Office: 585-336-3091

  • Nurse: 585-336-0816

Transportation: 585-336-2992 | Transportation website

District Office: 585-342-5500 | District website: westirondequoit.org

UPCOMING EVENTS

MAY

  • May 2: WICPTSA Candidates' Night
  • May 2-6: Staff Appreciation Week
  • May 3: Iroquois Jazz Band @ District Instrumental Jazz Night - IHS - 7:00 PM
  • May 5: BOE Meeting/Budget Hearing
  • May 13: 5th Grade Bingo - Iroquois - 6:30 - 7:30 PM
  • May 17: Budget Vote, St. Paul Fire Dept., 433 Cooper Road
  • May 18: 5th Gr Orchestra, 6th Gr Orchestra, & 5th/6th Gr Chorus - IHS - 7:00 PM
  • May 19: Iroquois Spirit Day - Student/Teacher Reversal Day
  • May 20: 6th Grade Glow Dance
  • May 26: Incoming 4th grade (6:00-6:30 PM) and 5th grade (6:45-7:00 PM) parent orientation
  • May 30: NO SCHOOL - Memorial Day

JUNE

  • Jun 2: Iroquois Open House
  • Jun 6: Concert - ALL 4th GRADE STUDENTS - Band, Chorus & Orchestra - IHS 7 PM
  • Jun 7: WICPTSA Meeting
  • Jun 13: 5th Gr Band, 6th Gr Band & Jazz Band - IHS - 7:00PM
  • Jun 14: Iroquois Spirit Day - Red, White & Blue Day
  • Jun 16: BOE Meeting
  • Jun 16 & 17: 6th Grade Outdoor Ed
  • Jun 20: NO SCHOOL: Juneteenth Observed
  • Jun 22: 6th Grade Recognition Ceremony
  • Jun 22: Last Day of School


For our full school calendar, click here.

FROM THE SCHOOL NURSE

Attention Iroquois parents: All students entering 5th grade in the fall need an updated physical, on file in the health office. The physical is mandated by NYS and should be completed by your child’s pediatrician.

Any physical after September 2021 is sufficient. If you haven’t done so, please schedule an appointment for you child and send in a copy to the health office. Thank you! All students who will be in 6th grade in the fall are mandated by NYS to have a Tdap booster prior to the start of school. StudentS will not be able to attend school after September 20th without an updated vaccine.


All students who will be in 7th grade in the fall need an updated physical and Meningitis vaccine. If your child intends to participate in a fall sport at Dake, it’s imperative to have a physical dated from September 1, 2021 to present on file in the health office, prior to the start of sports.

SEL - SOCIAL EMOTIONAL LEARNING

In last month’s newsletter, we discussed the CASEL (Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning) competency of Self-Awareness. We hope you are finding the tips we provided helpful for developing your child’s understanding and acceptance of their various emotions. This month, we are focusing on the CASEL competency of Relationship Skills. According to CASEL, having strong relationship skills helps us establish and maintain healthy and supportive relationships and to effectively navigate settings with diverse individuals and groups. Relationship skills include clear communication, active listening, collaborative problem-solving, teamwork and leadership skills, being able to negotiate conflict constructively, the ability to navigate settings with different social and cultural demands, offering help and support to others, and standing up for others.

This tip sheet (below) from Big Life Journal provides suggestions for modeling good listening skills for your child, which will hopefully transfer to your child learning to be a good listener to others. When children feel heard and understood by someone who really listens to them, they feel more confident and are better able to reflect on themselves (thus developing self-awareness). It feels great when others truly listen to us and care about what we have to say. That’s why people who are good at listening to others tend to be well-liked and are sought out for friendships. By modeling good listening skills with your child, you will strengthen your bond with them by showing you truly want to know their thoughts and feelings, and you will also help your child to develop these same skills for developing healthy relationships with others.


From Iroquois’s Mental Health Team,

Kimberly Bohnel, School Counselor

Jenna Nersinger, School Counselor

Marc Bigsby, School Social Worker

Kristin Belknap, School Psychologist

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READING TIP: ASK TEXT-DEPENDENT QUESTIONS

As we approach the summer and a break from the structure and routine of daily instruction, please keep in mind how important it is for particularly young learners to keep reading when school is NOT in session.


Reading can help children explore places they may never go or learn about topics they may never encounter in real life. You have probably heard about some different books your child has read in school. One of the best ways to continue this excitement at home is to read with your child. If your child doesn’t ask you questions, one way to truly engage is for you to ask them.


By asking your child text-dependent questions you will help them to read a text closely and answer by using details from the text. What is a text-dependent question? They require students to have actually read the text and can only be answered with evidence from the text. This doesn’t just mean questions that ask for a basic recall of facts or details from the text. This means the question is dependent on the student returning to the text for details that support their thinking. For example, read the following two questions about Goldilocks and the Three Bears.


Q1: If you were Goldilocks and you came across the three bear’s house would you go inside? Why or why not?

Q2: What do the actions of Goldilocks in the story tell us about her the type of person she is?


What are the differences between these two questions? The first does not actually require a child to have read the text. The second question, however, requires that the child carefully considers the details from the story and provide evidence using those details in their response.


Text-dependent questions should cause students to think at higher levels by making logical inferences, drawing conclusions and engaging in arguments based on what the text says. They can be asked whether reading a book for fun or reading to support learning in areas such as science or social studies. No matter what type of text your child is reading, whether it is a book about sharks, the American Revolution or their favorite fairy tale, the types of questions you ask can lead to your child having a deeper understanding of it.

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The West Irondequoit Central School District’s Indigenous People’s Sub-Committee (IPSC) – a branch of our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Coalition – will host a Haudenosaunee Flag Raising Ceremony at 5 PM Wednesday, May 4th at the Irondequoit High School Stadium. The community is invited to this 30-minute ceremony prior to an IHS girls lacrosse game against the Canandaigua Braves.


A Community Connections virtual Town Hall/panel discussion on Irondequoit’s Indigenous heritage also will take place at 7 PM on May 24th. These two events are the next steps in our district’s efforts to honor Irondequoit’s history. In addition, the IPSC and district collaborated on a special publication, “Honoring Irondequoit’s Indigenous Roots,” that you can read at THIS LINK. It will be mailed to all district residents in May. The subcommittee’s Mission Statement below explains our “Why.”

The Indigenous Peoples’ DEI Subcommittee is committed to building a strong partnership approach across our community to ensure that Indigenous voices, heritages, and histories are accurately taught, honored, and woven into our district culture. The special publication includes information on:


  • The district’s 2002 nickname/mascot change

  • WICSD’s Land Acknowledgement in 2020

  • Significance of the Haudenosaunee flag

  • How to combat Native American “invisibility”

EMERGENCY CONTACT INFORMATION

Parents/guardians,

Do you:

  • Have a new cell phone number or email address?

  • Have a new work phone number?

  • Need to update your emergency contacts?


Be sure to keep your child's school informed of any changes to your phone numbers or emergency contact information. Update info directly on the Parent Portal, or send in a note with your child. Thank you!

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DISTRICT VOTE IS MAY 17

The annual District Budget Vote and Board of Education candidate election is Tuesday, May 17 from 6 AM to 9 PM at the St. Paul Fire Department. PTSA is once again sponsoring Netsins Ice Cream Truck from 5:30-8 PM. The Budget edition of "The Quote" will arrive in residents' mailboxes in early May. You also will be able to access it on the District website at THIS LINK. Find more vote information there on:


  • Board of Education candidate bios and statements from Courtney Shouse & Matthew Sullivan (2 seats available)

  • WICPTSA Candidates' Night (video posted May 3)

  • Budget Adoption (video/April 14th meeting)

  • Proposed Budget for 2022-23 school year

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JOIN US AT FRONTIER FIELD WITH $11 TICKETS!

Let’s show our town pride and community support for the Rochester Red Wings. Thanks to the West Irondequoit Central PTSA, WICSD families, students and staff can buy discounted tickets – just $11 – for the Wings’ 1:05 PM matchup on Sunday, May 22nd vs. the Lehigh Valley IronPigs. Just click this link to purchase: bit.ly/WIDay_Wings. Each ticket sold generates money to support the WICSPTA!
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FLOWERS FOR MOTHER’S DAY & MORE!


Visit Helmer Nature Center this Friday, May 6th for a fun fundraiser from 4-6 PM. Bring yourself, a child, friend – whoever – and decorate a basket filled with fresh flowers. Handmade from YOU, it’ll mean even more for Mother’s Day, another occasion or just because. It costs just $8 ($6 for members). Plus, you get one slice of pizza per basket! You won't find a better deal in town!


No reservations required. Questions? Email HelmerNatureCenter@gmail.com

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GET HELP FROM OUR TECH TEAM!

The West Irondequoit CSD has a TECHNOLOGY SUPPORT KNOWLEDGE BASE that features a plethora of helpful information, including items such as Frequently Asked Questions, tips on solving issues and user guides on Infinite Campus and learning platforms such as Seesaw and Schoology. Access it via www.wicsd.tech