RES Staff Update

December 3-7, 2018

December Rocket Register

Please send any information that you would like included in the next Rocket Register to me by Wednesday afternoon. The December Rocket Register will be emailed on Friday. If you have e-track pictures, please post them on the staff drive (2018-2019, E-track).

Helpful Research

Do you have students that are struggling with academics or behavior?

While reading some research this weekend, I found something that I think is very relevant. In Michael Fullan's book, Stratosphere, he shares research surrounding the topics of integrating technology, pedagogy, and change knowledge. A couple of "aha's" were revealed from studies focused on interventions in education:

1. Academic Interventions. Short exercises that focus on students' thoughts, feelings and beliefs in and about school can lead to large gains in student achievement as well as reduce achievement gaps months and even years later. Targeting students' subjective experiences is the key.

  • One study found that students who attended an eight-session workshop teaching them that their brain is a muscle and grows with effort achieved a dramatic increase in math achievement, while a control group that received workshops on study skills showed no gains.
  • Another study found that when students were asked to write about core personal values in a 15- to 20-minute writing exercise, the gap between African American and European American students shrank by almost 40 percent by the end of the semester. The gain was maintained through the use of additional writing interventions. The reason? This activity taps into student mindsets in a way that opens up subtle new ways of relating to learning opportunities. These types of interventions result in initial success, greater sense of belongingness, and a belief that students can learn more than they thought possible.

2. Behavior Interventions. Interventions to improve behavior must also focus on subjective experiences. Two concrete research-based strategies are:

  • Spend 30 minutes of out-of-classroom time--for example, during lunch--getting to know a student with whom you do not relate well. Studies have shown that not only will you gain a deeper and more positive understanding of the student, but it often dramatically will alter the way the student will engage in class. Once students feel that the adults involved are interested in who they are, their willingness to make a positive contribution will rise.
  • For 2 minutes a day for 10 consecutive days, have a personal conversation with a difficult or challenging student about something the student is interested in. Fullan shared that this simple strategy will almost always yield noticeable improvement in the student's attitude and behavior in the class.

I'd love to hear back from anyone who tries (or has tried) these strategies this year. The message is clear from this research: Interventions which focus on the subjective experiences of students will have a positive impact.

Bragging on Our Colleagues

Part of the final assignment is the option of bragging on fellow colleagues who have either demonstrated a "Kids Deserve It" attitude or who have been role models for blended learning. I will continue to post these after this week, so please feel free to send in more positive notes.

Emily Gunn always has a Kids Deserve it attitude. She is always thinking of new ideas and activities for the students to stay engaged with learning. I think she does a great job of making the kids feel important and going above and beyond for the kids. :)

I can't choose just one person that I see exemplifying the KDI attitude because our campus embodies this idea. I truly believe that every person at Robison, whether teacher, para or support staff believes in the idea that we are here for kids. I feel honored and blessed to work at such an amazing campus!

Mrs Hussey is a role model for her students. Everyday I hear her talk to her students with respect and share with them life lessons.

Reminders for This Week

Progress Reports go home Tuesday--Please be sure you have close to half of the minimum number of grades due for the grading period--see the hub for clarification if needed.

Garland visits Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday

Holiday Shop begins Tuesday. Schedule was sent via email from Courtney & it is on the hub. Shopping will take place in the portable. Family shopping night is Tuesday, Dec. 4 (5-7 pm)

12 Days of Christmas kicks off on Thursday, Dec. 6. A separate email will be sent with all of the details.

Committee Meetings:

Writing Committee, Dec. 5 @ 4:30 pm

Big picture

Pineapple Chart

Congratulations to our winners from the drawing: Christi Moran, Connie Kubis, Beth Smith, Sarah Judson, and Jamie Herridge. Until our shirts arrive, you may wear jeans on Wednesdays with any shirt (well, almost any shirt).

Be sure to ask for a ticket when you have either hosted or visited a classroom to observe. There are so many great things happening in our classrooms!

Calendar Updates-Bolded items are new this week

Tuesday, December 4: Garland (am-K; pm-1st)

Wednesday, December 5: Garland (am-3rd; pm-4th)

Thursday, December 6: Garland (am-2nd; pm-5th)

Tuesday, December 11: Gerletti (Mentor meeting via Zoom @ 9 am)

Tuesday, December 18: Papa John's Pizza Night & PTO Cookie Tin Give-Away for Staff

Wednesday, December 19: Chess Club (7:45 am)

CTE Assignment #5 (THE LAST ONE) is due on Sunday, December 2

Campus Time Equivalency

All staff must earn their CTE hours. If you are unsure if you have earned your hours, please see your appraiser. Thank you!

Staff Dress for the Week

Monday-Donate to Educate Shirt (2018-19) or Professional Dress

Tuesday-Team Shirt Tuesday

Wednesday-Professional Dress

Thursday-Jeans with a holiday shirt/colors or professional dress

Friday-Robison spirit shirt or holiday shirt with jeans

2018-2019 Master Calendar

You will receive a paper copy of this. Please make sure to check the Staff Update each week for any changes.