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March 20, 2020 RESOURCE EDITION

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Newsletter

This Newsletter updates on all matters connected to Cohasset Public Schools. This letter is sent as part of a District initiative focusing on communication.

Take Care of Yourself and Take Care or Each Other

In these unprecedented times we need to stay anchored in the basic importance of taking care of yourself and taking care of your neighbor. Ironically, in order to take best care we need to keep distance from one another. In the words of Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, "Now is the time for social sacrifice...it will save lives."


We are also facing uncharted waters in schools, where we are in the position of creating remote learning plans that help provide for the continuance of education. This edition points teachers and families towards some great resources as we work together to help the children during this difficult time. Please understand that this approach to enrichment / remote learning reflects the information that we currently have from federal and state authorities. I will keep you informed if information changes and new guidance is given regarding our approach to remote learning.


With these difficult times comes a heightened anxiousness on the part of many students. Keep in mind that that our counselors can be contacted to help, and we still subscribe to INTERFACE. The William James INTERFACE Referral Service is a mental health and wellness referral Helpline. This valuable resource is available Monday through Friday, 9 am-5 pm, at 888-244-6843 (toll free). This is a free, confidential referral service for individuals across the lifespan living in participating communities. Callers, from participating communities, are matched with licensed mental health providers from our extensive database, on average, within 2 weeks of their call to INTERFACE. Each referral best meets the location, insurance, and specialty needs of the caller. https://interface.williamjames.edu/


Thank you for your patience and collaboration during this difficult time. Cohasset is a town with a great heart, amazing families, dedicated educators and talented and wonderful students. We will rise above this adversity and emerge stronger as a community.


Sincerely,


Patrick Sullivan, Ed.D.

Superintendent

Cohasset Public Schools

A reminder that Cohasset Public Schools is offering Grab and Go Brown Bag Breakfast & Lunch Monday - Friday from 8:00AM - 11:00AM for any interested CPS student. Students can use their lunch cards. This service is offered in the back of the middle school

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

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Please see the link below for Coronavirus (COVID-19) related Community Health Updates, School Announcements and information, as well as our District Enrichment and Remote Learning Resources provide during the school cancellation period.

SOME AMAZING STAFF APPROACHES TO ENRICHMENT

Although faculty and staff have just started their connecting to families during this crisis, here are some excellent enrichment activities happening throughout the district.

Deer Hill Padlet for staying connected


Here are some virtual book talks by authors, read alouds, links to things to combat boredom, tv/movie/book recommendations from kids, etc..available for the students by some members of the grade five team. It is a great way for teachers and students to stay connected.

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Sixth Grade Poetry

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"The most popular enrichment activity sixth graders are participating in on my Google Classroom is reading "mystery poems" that describe everyday objects in a new way and guessing what the mystery poem is about. They are also creating their own mystery poems for one another, using sensory details and personification. They are posting the poems for their classmates to guess what is being described.


Students are also encouraged to read for 30-60 minutes/day and continue their Membean vocabulary training."


- Donna Melia, Sixth Grade ELA Teacher


FREE BOOKS...WHO DOESN'T LOVE THAT???

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Library Media Specialist Shares Free Book Resources

Middle and High School Library Media Specialist, Kathy Cerruti is sharing information regarding free book resources. Thank you, Ms. Cerruti!

AND FREE AUDIO BOOKS!!!!

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All About Me Activity at Osgood...Mrs. Uhlar's Class

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More Fantastic Activities at Osgood

Students in Mrs. Sullivan's class at Osgood worked on book reports, did enrichment independently and with their family members. Here are a couple of great photos...some excited and justifiably proud students!
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HAIKU writing in Mrs. Norton's High School English Class

During Ms. Norton's high school poetry unit, HAIKU was introduced. The HAIKU format is based on 1 stanza of 3 lines limited to consecutively, 5-7-5 syllables.


From Mrs. Norton:


"Time away from traditional classroom learning is a great opportunity to practice HAIKU and reap many surprising rewards. Writing in this form can be deeply reflective, requires high-ordered thinking skills and is also lots of fun.


Watch a TEDtalk by Zezan Tam to get started. His daily mantra, in HAIKU form of course, is:


Write daily haiku:

Reflect, be grateful, be brave,

Be humble, learn fast."


Mrs. Norton's Haiku for March 19:


Running in the rain.

A group that's six feet apart

Gratitude for life!


Thank you, Mrs. Norton for your inspiring activitiy.

Zezan Tam...The Power of Daily Haiku

The power of daily haiku | Zezan Tam | TEDxUniMelb

Music and Art at CMS & CHS

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"Launching Monday Middle and High School Music and Arts teachers are sending out a daily prompt.

Music will have:

Something to read

Something to watch

Something to listen to


Art will have:

Something to inspire

Something to innovate

Something to create


We will also be posting "Challenges" for students to try online - they encourage teamwork and collaboration (all online!!!) in an effort to bring people together while we are apart.


Finally, there was supposed to be a middle school art showcase at the South Shore Art Center. This gallery will go online so that student art work will be displayed and families can view the installations. Details to come!


In addition to these initiatives above, we have been posting enrichment opportunities and links to cool things for kids to do...you can tour the Met online and many artists are livestreaming concerts! The arts are alive!"


- Mrs. Stephanie Moriarty, Director of Music and Fine Arts (6 - 12)

Take a Virtual Field Trip to the Kansas City Zoo

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Personalized Learning Ideas for Younger Students

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Maybe you would like to take a tour of Yellowstone Park?

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Mo Williams wants to have lunch with you! Grab a pad and pencil and join him at 1:00pm everyday for Lunch Doodles with Mo Williams.

Want to learn to about being an author & illustrator? Meet Jarrett J. Krosoczka every day at 2:00PM. This is for ALL AGES!

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Today is a great day to visit space! Jump into a virtual field trip. Have fun!

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Check out CASEL’s collection of #SEL resources designed to support you during this challenging time.

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Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment Compass: Assistant Superintendent Leslie Scollins, Ed.D.

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Important Resources for Use During School Cancellation Period

Educational Resources for Students and Families

Some districts and schools have been, or will soon be, providing students and families with educational resources to help students continue learning while schools are closed. In addition to those resources provided by local districts and schools, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) pulled together this list of available resources that can support students and families while schools are closed. This list is not comprehensive, and DESE does not endorse these products. We are making the list available to families and caregivers as a way to support engaging students in learning while they are out of school.


Family Guides to the Massachusetts Curriculum Standards (Created by DESE)

These guides to the Massachusetts learning standards help families understand what students are expected to know and be able to do by the end of each grade. Designed to help families and teachers work together to support learning, the guides are available in English, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, and Simplified Chinese. Promotional materials advertising these resources are also available in English, Spanish, and Portuguese.

Link: http://www.doe.mass.edu/highstandards/


DESE and WGBH Partnership for Educational Resources

PBS LearningMedia, https://mass.pbslearningmedia.org/, and WGBH’s new online Distance Learning Center, https://www.wgbh.org/distance-learning-center

The Department is partnering with WGBH to bring educational resources to students and families through television and digital media. WGBH has created a distance learning site, and we hope to reach as many students and caregivers as possible. PBS LearningMedia is a FREE digital repository of tens of thousands of high-quality media resources that are contextualized for educational use. The resources span disciplines for grades PreK-12, are aligned to national and state standards, and include videos, comprehensive lessons, interactive activities, and support materials (teaching tips, background readings, and student handouts).


Here are just a few collections on PBS LearningMedia to explore:

Bringing the Universe to America's Classrooms: Earth and space science, created in collaboration with NASA. Grades K-12.

AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: History and social studies resources from one of public media's flagship broadcasts. Grades 4-12.

ARTHUR: Beloved characters keep the focus on community, civics, and social-emotional learning. Grades PreK-5.

Molly of Denali: The MOLLY OF DENALI™ collection offers videos, digital games, lessons, teaching tips, and activities with a focus on informational text. Grades PreK-2.

Math at the Core Middle School: Engaging media and integrated activities, all aligned with the Massachusetts mathematics standards . Grades 5-8.

Inspiring Middle School Literacy: Self-paced lessons include videos, interactive activities, note taking, reading, and writing to present students with engaging science, social studies, mathematics, and English language arts topics. Grades 5-8.

NOVA Education Resources: Authentic, real-world science learning. Grades 7-13+.


Digital resources designed for remote learning and available free of charge:


English Language Arts and Literacy

Keep your child reading every day.

● CommonLit, https://www.commonlit.org/en – A free collection of fiction and nonfiction texts for grades 3-12. Includes an annotation tool, guiding and discussion questions, translations in various languages, and texts read aloud.

● Great Minds, https://greatminds.org/: Great Minds has daily lessons in Wit & Wisdom (English language arts) available for free for students in grades K–8 . These lessons will be delivered by Great Minds’ own teachers and will be viewable on any device.

● Heggerty, https://www.heggerty.org/download-assessments-and-resources: Free activities to build foundational reading skills. These are best for ages 4-6.

● Hoopla (https://www.hoopladigital.com/) and OverDrive (https://www.overdrive.com/): Many local public libraries use these two apps to allow users to borrow digital books for free. Visit your local library’s website and look for the section on digital resources.

● StoryLine Online, https://www.storylineonline.net/: Hear quality children’s literature read aloud and see illustrations.


History, Social Studies, and Civics

● iCivics, https://www.icivics.org/games: iCivics offers free, engaging civics content, including lesson plans and games for students to play digitally, content about media literacy, and Advanced Placement (AP) U.S. Government and Politics prep.

● EVERFI, https://everfi.com/partners/k-12-educators/financial-education/: Offers interactive financial literacy and social and emotional learning lessons. They have a bank of free digital lessons that can be accessed by registering as a student or a teacher.

● Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, https://www.gilderlehrman.org/: This website is geared specifically at preparing AP U.S. History students virtually. It includes primary sources, essays, videos, and study guides aligned with the AP curriculum.

● National Constitution Center, https://constitutioncenter.org/learn/educational-resources/games: In addition to the interactive Constitution tool, they host several educational resources and games.

● Stanford History Education Group, https://sheg.stanford.edu/history-lessons: The Reading Like a Historian curriculum is free with registration and offers ready-to-go lessons on world and U.S. history based on primary source investigations.


STEM [Science and Technology/Engineering, Mathematics, Digital Literacy and Computer Science]

Code.org: Provides learning resources that help students learn about computer science and programming on their own. Offerings include Computer Science (CS) Fundamentals for K-5 and online courses and labs for middle and high school (CS Express, App Lab, Game Lab, and Web Lab).

● Great Minds, https://greatminds.org/: Free daily lessons available in grades 3–5 science and grades K-12 Eureka Math. These lessons will be delivered by Great Minds’ own

teachers and will be viewable on any device. In addition, access to the full K-12 Eureka Math program is available for free.

● Khan Academy, https://www.khanacademy.org/: Khan Academy has outlined support for parents and educators on how to use their resources during remote learning. Khan Academy is a free resource for students, teachers, and parents with a library of lessons covering kindergarten through early college math, grammar, science, history, plus AP® courses, SAT® preparation, and more. Available in 40 languages.

● PhET Online Simulations, https://phet.colorado.edu/_m/: A library of online simulations that students can play with and explore to investigate scientific and mathematical models. Can be sorted bygrade level.

Smithsonian Science How Webcast: These webcasts originally aired live from the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. They’re great for students in grades 3-8 and are optimized for students in grades 3-5.

● ST Math, https://www.stmath.com/coronavirus: A web-based visual instructional program that leads to deep conceptual understanding of math. ST Math is offering parents free access through June 30 for grades K-8.

Zearn K-5 Mathematics: Zearn has made its entire curriculum, including 400 hours of digital lessons with on-screen teachers and supportive remediation, available for free. To access these materials, go to the Distance Learning Resource Center for:

○ Quick-start instructions for using Zearn Math programmatically as part of a distance learning plan

○ Daily webinars for administrators, teachers, and parents to walk through quick-start instructions. Each webinar will offer ‘office hours’ with time for questions with the Zearn team.


Physical Education

● Cosmic Kids Yoga, https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga: Provides videos on yoga, mindfulness, and relaxation.

● GoNoodle, https://www.gonoodle.com/: Free movement and mindfulness videos.

Arts (Dance, Media Arts, Music, Theater, and Visual arts)

● Media Arts: Pencil Madness, http://pencilmadness.com/app: Students can use a dashboard of options to create a numerous layered effects similar to the concepts learned in Photoshop.

● Music: Beepbox Music-Making On Your Home Computer: Support your child’s music learning using this free online platform. No special equipment is needed to use this online tool for sketching and sharing instrumental melodies.

● Visual Art: Get local! The Drawing Act Project is happening right now here in Massachusetts! Anyone can participate by submitting a drawing this spring. The full directions for the drawing lesson is outlined in this flyer. In addition, the Incredible Art Department’s Art Teacher Toolkit, https://www.incredibleart.org/links/toolbox.html, has engaging visual art lessons that can be delivered at home. Creative art activities and games are available at https://www.incredibleart.org/links/artgames.html.


General Online Learning Resources (All or Multiple Content Areas)

● Brainpop, https://www.brainpop.com/: Free resources and tools that develop critical, computational, and creative thinking skills across the curriculum, especially for younger children. Available in Spanish, French, and English.

● Listenwise, https://listenwise.com/: Supports listening comprehension with stories and non-fiction in English language arts, social studies and science. Subscriptions are free.

● Newsela, https://newsela.com/: Digital subscriptions for free in English language arts, social science, and science and supports social emotional learning.

Scholastic Learn at Home: General videos and learning activities.

TechforLearners.org: Searchable database of education technology tools that facilitate online classrooms and teaching, allowing educators to search for free and discounted tools and services by grade level, product type, and subject matter. The site will soon include additional resources for parents and students.

● WatchKnowLearn, https://www.watchknowlearn.org/: Free educational videos in all content areas.


Resources for English Learners

● Khan Academy, https://www.khanacademy.org/: Available in 40 languages, Khan Academy has outlined support for parents and educators on how to use their resources during remote learning. Khan Academy is a free resource for students, teachers, and parents with a library of lessons covering kindergarten through early college math, grammar, science, and history, plus AP® courses, SAT® preparation, and more.

● ColorinColorado, https://www.colorincolorado.org/coronavirus: This bilingual website has compiled resources for educators and families of English learners.

● Duolingo, https://www.duolingo.com/: For students to practice conversational English.

● Immigrant Connections: From YouTube channels to multilingual reference guides, the site has compiled a comprehensive resource list to assist English learners and immigrant parents support the temporary home education of their children.

● Listenwise, https://listenwise.com/: Supports listening comprehension with stories and non-fiction in English language arts, social studies, and science. A subscription is free and includes supports for English learners.

Newsela: Digital subscriptions for free in English language arts, social science, and science and supports social emotional learning and English learners.


Supporting Students with Disabilities

● The Massachusetts Council for Exceptional Children (MCEC) has created an open-access resource folder for Massachusetts educators in order to exchange educational resources. General education and special education teachers are encouraged to share resources through this online forum. For ease of use, MCEC has created individual folders by grade level, from preschool through secondary transition.

● Special education teachers, general education teachers, related service providers, and administrators are encouraged to reach out to students and families by phone, email, and other means of communication in order to ensure that students with disabilities can access educational resources provided by the district.

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METCO UPDATE FROM METCO DIRECTOR MS. ALEISA GITTENS-CARLE

Feel free to contact Ms. Aleisa Gittens-Carle or Ms. Atisha Winslow at (781)383-6117 with any additional questions.

From the Office of Mary Buchanan, Director of Student Services

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Special Education Resources and Information

From the Director of Finance and Operations...Michael MacMillan

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School Committee Approves FY21 School Budget

The Cohasset School Committee voted to approve the FY21 Budget on March 4, 2020. This budget, at $21,027,711, is a 3.4% increase from the FY20 budget. In this budget the district will be able to invest in several key priorities, including:

  • Addition of a new Kindergarten section with a teacher and an educational support professional.
  • Adding a new bus driver to allow the district to change busing from three tiers (1. CMHS, 2. DHS and 3. JOS) to two tiers (1. CMHS and 2. DHS & JOS)
  • Investing in elementary math instruction – purchasing a new curriculum, adding a math support position at Deer Hill and an increase to the existing math resource teacher position at Joseph Osgood.
  • Increasing the Social and Emotional Learning supports provided to students by adding an third adjustment counselor at the Middle / High School. We are also increasing the Occupational Therapist at Joseph Osgood from 0.8 FTE to 1 FTE.
  • Investment in support services including adding a 0.5FTE custodian at CMHS and increasing the salaries for technology staff.

This, and more, is made possible by this budget increase as well as increased state funding for special education costs and savings in utility costs.

Further information can be found on the district’s website, including the presentation that was given at the public hearing on the budget: https://www.cohassetk12.org/site/default.aspx?PageID=4153

Next Steps

The budget amount, voted on by the School Committee, will be included as part of the Town’s overall budget for FY21 to be approved at Town Meeting , which will take place on a date to be determined. Before then, the School Committee and School Administration, will be discussing the school budget at a joint meeting with the Cohasset Board of Selectmen and Cohasset Advisory Committee. This meeting will also be held on a date to be determined.

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