P'ville Elementary Newsletter

May 2017 Edition - We're Growing Learners & Leaders!


The Pleasantville Community School District, in partnership with the entire community, will empower every student to become a life-long learner who is a responsible, productive and engaged citizen within the global community.

The Final Trojan Tromp of the School Year!

In May, we focused our attention on being a little kinder, or as we call it "Filling Buckets." A "bucket dipper" is someone who does things that hurts others. "Bucket fillers" on the other hand help make someone's day by saying and doing kind things. Congratulations to the following students who were nominated by their teacher for best exemplifying this habit and got to participate in the last "Trojan Tromp" of the school year: Paytyn Weaver, Stealth Maeschen, Beckett Hicks, Tatum Herselius, Cayson Lokenvitz, Blake Bingham, Ava Murray, Kayden Feldman, Haley Perry, Thaddeus Mesecher, Max Gilmore, Madalyn Hamilton, Aiden Ginger, Addy Smith, Ryleigh Hardman, Jax Bingham, Claire Miller, Zane Mullenix, JJ Phillips, Jacob Rice, Tanner Booth, Brodie Friedel, Brooke Smith, Jacque Latch, Trey Friday, Alayna Klein, Damion Lewis, Eli Dawson, Chesnee Showers, Joelle Johnson, Hope DeMan, Mira Hughes, Hailey Holsinger, Jennah Schakel, Brent Yoder, Torie Coker, Taya Cox and Tyler "Gibby" Gibson.

Saying goodbyes

We are losing three wonderful ladies from our teaching ranks at Pleasantville Elementary. Their shoes will be very hard to fill.

Tammy Gahan is headed off into the glorious and well-deserved land of retirement. Tammy has spent over 20 years in her hometown school system, teaching preschool all the way up to her most recent position as an upper elementary special education teacher.

Jen Worthington is off to bigger pastures in Johnston. She has spent a decade teaching in 3rd grade here, the same position she will take on at Johnston.

Hilary Bakker is headed to Clear Creek-Amana schools. She has served as an Instructional Coach, 5th grade and 1st grade teacher in her six years at Pleasantville.

We cannot thank them enough for their dedication and determination during their service here in helping our students and school be the very best it can be. They will be sorely missed, but we wish them the best of everything in their future endeavors!

Madame Brillhart's Wax Museum!

Miss Brillhart, a second grade teacher, developed an amazing experience for her students. Kids in her room created and simulated a wax museum experience. Students conducted research about a famous American hero or leader. They created a script and then dressed the part of their historical figure. Guests to the museum could push a button and hear the student/wax figure speak about their major accomplishments. Many of the visitors commented that this was one of the coolest things they have seen at the elementary. Congratulations on creating a wonderful experience Miss Brillhart's class!

Teachers Complete Personalized Technology Professional Development

This semester, teachers have undertaken a mission to infuse more technology usage in their classroom to further advance student learning and engagement. Any parent knows that if you stick an iPad in front of a kid, they are eager to use it!

We allowed staff to explore on their own ways to take something they were already doing the old fashioned way and jump start some new life in their classroom utilizing technology instead. Here are some examples:

* Ronda Wicks, Cheryl Tucker, Lisa Furnal, Ashley Robinson, Emily Hoffman & Deb Kenyon explored Kahoot! Kids are always being assessed about learning. Kahoot! is an interactive, game-based site that teachers use to formatively assess kids on content they are covering in class. Pictured below is a 5th grade group playing Kahoot to test their math essential learnings and the other picture is a 3rd grade class practicing vocabulary using Kahoot!

* Monica Friday, Melissa Perry, and Haley Brillhart explored Seesaw. Think of it as Facebook for classrooms. Teachers can upload student work and share it with parents. This is a great communication tool for teachers to keep parents in the know about what's happening in the classroom.

* Many of those same group of ladies also used Chatterpix. Students are able to snap a picture of something, then talk into the iPad and the mouth moves on the picture. Coupled with Seesaw, parents can hear their child explain what they learned!

* Haley Cummings gave virtual reality (yes, in preschool they're doing virtual reality) by using Google Expeditions and a smart phone to explore places around the world - from the White House to the Pyramids of Egypt, many of her students got to take a virtual field trip to far away places!

* Dana Thomas and Brian Harken explored Mystery Science. Their classrooms are using this site to help kids explore matters related to science and it's aligned to the new Next Generation Science Standards. Down below is a picture of one lesson from Mrs. Thomas' class regarding seasons that student birthdays fell into. Mr. Harken also has a video below of toothpick bridges that his class constructed after a Mystery Science lesson.

* Amber Green and Megan McCall implemented Bitsboard, an interactive way for some of our youngest kids to build simple words and write on the iPad.

* Jenny Mortensen and several other teachers used QR Codes. Even in preschool, kids are using iPads to scan QR Codes to look up information and learn!

* Mary Rector, Susan Gustafson & Wendy Wild implemented Plickers. This is a very cool way to assess math skills. Kids use a special Plickers card to answer a question. The teacher can scan the entire classroom with their phone and the results of student responses are automatically uploaded onto their phone to show classroom results, which can even be displayed in bar graphs to track class results.

* Abby Eakes, Miika Busick, Vicki Nowak, Jen Worthington & Lynette Gordon used Google Slides and Google Classroom by using the Google platform to formatively assess kids and to put together presentations to share student learning. Pictured above is a 4th grader sharing her book review with other students in her class.

* Daria Simpson implemented Quaver Music. This is another great site for kids to use, learn and create music.

* Sheldon Card utilized Pedometers in PE and he is using these to collect total steps and track activity levels of students and they are eager to get those steps in!

* Carol Beier researched dozens and dozens of apps for iPads for the students in PK through Kindergarten. She shared the list with her colleagues, including reviews, so they can make appropriate selections to meet the needs of their students in various learning centers.

* Wendy Wild even explored using a "green screen" for kids to present their research on their favorite animal. She utilized an app on her phone that allowed people to tell about their favorite animal in front of a green screen while her phone projected an image of that animal behind the person. See the video below for an example.

Big image
Big image
Big image


The list of things accomplished this year are too numerous to list completely. From the bond issue passing, to scoring high on Attendance Center Rankings or the Iowa School Report Card, to successes on the Iowa Assessments or FAST early literacy assessments, to earning recognition as a Model PLC school, or just the fact that our kids raised almost $3500 this year to various charities or just did great deeds in or around our community, we feel very blessed at Pleasantville Elementary for all of these things. We hope you feel the same way as parents or community stakeholders. We are going to smile and reflect on a wonderful school year, then think about how to be even better than ever. Give us a couple months of summer courses and some rest and relaxation to sharpen that saw and wait and see what's in store for an even better 2017-2018 school year. Enjoy your summer everyone!
Big image
Big image
Big image

Watch Out for Flying Unicorns and Kiddie Pools Filled with Shaving Cream!