Pow Wow Principal's Press

Vero Beach Elementary 9/9/2016


Ok... Anyone who has come to brag on our school.. I've asked them to wait until our honeymoon period is over.
4.5 weeks in and we are on POINT.

I think we can officially celebrate that we made so many incredible changes that are working for students.

1/8th of the year is done!!!!
We. Got. This!

With that said... eeek... 1/8th of the year is done. Every minute and every single day matters. Thank you so so so much for everyone who has been sick, dealing with personal struggles,or just anyone who hasn't felt 100% but has been here anyway- THANK YOU!

Sincerely, thank you.

Our kids need you (and so does the tribe)!

Report Card Changes!!!

Here’s the summary:

· 2nd-5th is going back to the A-F report card (no longer the 1-2-3-4 standards-based report card).

· 2nd-5th will NOT have progress reports next week.

· K & 1st is continuing the standards-based report card (the transition has been easier…they were already ESPN.)

· K & 1st can use the simplified district progress report that was emailed last week.

· The standards-based report cards were time-consuming, difficult to explain to parents, and frustrating to do right.

· The standards-based report cards did, though, point out some great “good practices” that most of you have always done anyway.

· The district will be sending you all an email soon with instructions on how to transition back to A-F.

· The district will be sending a letter to 2nd-5th parents on Monday explaining the change.

So what now? Celebrate on a positive note, the less stress for grading. On another note, frustration over the lost time & energy, as well as the mid-year change- We feel your pain. The struggle is real.

Volunteers Available!

Ms. Karen has spent hours organizing our volunteer registrations, and we are now ready to have them work with you! We have over 60 local community members who want to volunteer their time to support VBE!

To find someone to work in your room, please see Sara or Claudia in the front office. The volunteers are organized by their grade preference, so it should be easy to find someone who will meet your needs.

Let's take advantage of this awesome opportunity!
Big image

PBS Reminders. Wampums and other Class reward systems should never be used punitively.

Why is it so important to focus on teaching positive social behaviors?

Frequently, the question is asked, "Why should I have to teach kids to be good? They already know what they are supposed to do. Why can I not just expect good behavior?" In the infamous words of a TV personality, "How is that working out for you?"

In the past, school-wide discipline has focused mainly on reacting to specific student misbehavior by implementing punishment-based strategies including reprimands, loss of privileges, office referrals, suspensions, and expulsions. Research has shown that the implementation of punishment, especially when it is used inconsistently and in the absence of other positive strategies, is ineffective. Introducing, modeling, and reinforcing positive social behavior is an important step of a student's educational experience.

Teaching behavioral expectations and rewarding students for following them is a much more positive approach than waiting for misbehavior to occur before responding. The purpose of school-wide PBIS is to establish a climate in which appropriate behavior is the norm.

Message from Ms. Riddick:

Although Class Dojo has a negative point system, it should NOT be used in a PBIS school. When you click on the settings icon on your class, you can set up point values and behaviors you want to reward. You get two tabs: Positive/Needs work. These are great. Choose positive and set up point values. If there is a particular behavior you want improved, for example, staying in your assigned area or seat, then make that worth more points so everyone wants to do it.

The other tab, needs work, should not be assigned a negative point. It should be 0. We would like to point out and report to parents the areas of improvement but we do not want to take away points. Give points for positive, and reinforce the rules and expectations for non-compliance.

Click the link below to see a video I found to show a few strategies that can be used in your classrooms.

PBS wampums!!!

Please make sure you are giving out the wampums consistently. There are some grade levels that have thousands less than others. We want all students to see this as a meaningful reward system. I promise you there are items that they WANT. Use this to your advantage.
For example- We have several sweatshirts to "sell" worth 400 wampum.
We will be "selling" our VBE swag sunglasses for 200 wampum.

Sadly, some students are coming with only 10 wampum and look incredibly disappointed. Give them out! Trade them in and use it as a solid math opportunity to count to 25 and give them golds.

The ELKS secure a $10,000 grant because we calculate how many wampum are being used and how many "acts of awesome" they support. The less wampum retrieved, the less data they have.

ALSO- Please make sure you are calculating MONTHLY how many wampum you are collecting for incentives in your class and get that number to Ms. Riddick and Mr. Lee. They will be giving the ELKS those numbers as well.

Thank you for supporting the most pro-active approach to discipline. It works if you work it.

Here are the totals from our students' first visit to the store:
Big image
Big image

As a reminder, here is the schedule for days classes visit the Wampum Store:

Big image

Math Data Analysis

Please wrap up your math data collection this week so that your grade chair can share it at our meeting with them on Friday morning. If you have questions or concerns, see Ms. Ragley or Ms. Keeley.

A Look at the Week Ahead:

Big image

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Thursday, Sep. 22nd, 4-7:30pm

VBE Classrooms

Please begin scheduling your conferences. They will be held the week of September 19-22. The goal is to conference with 100% of our students' families. Please create your conference schedule and submit it to your evaluating administrator. Conference summary forms, along with reading deficiency letters, can be found on the table outside of Ms. Moree's office. For questions or concerns, please see your grade chair.
Big image


** Baseline assessments will continue for the next several weeks. Please refer to Ms. Moree's original email for your testing times.

** After your students have finished testing, please refer to page 7 in your i-Ready manual for directions in how to get your students started on their differentiated lessons.

Here is some helpful information regarding i-Ready ESE Accommodations:

The thoughtful planning that went into the design of the i-Ready Diagnostic makes it suitable for preparing a wide range of SPED students who use various accommodations for FSA testing. For optimal comparability between assessments, accommodations that would be used for FSA should also be used for i-Ready as much as possible.

However, all items in i-Ready are designed to be accessible to the vast majority of students, regardless of their need for accommodation. Therefore, in most cases, students who have accommodations listed in their IEPs (e.g., large print, extra time) will not require additional help during administration.

According to the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing (AERA, APA, NCME, 2014), “Universal Design processes strive to minimize access challenges by taking into account test characteristics that may impede access to the construct for certain test takers.” i-Ready Diagnostic was developed with the universal principles of design for assessment in mind. The seven elements of Universal Design as they apply to large-scale assessment are, according to the NCEO Synthesis study:

1. - Inclusive assessment population

2. - Precisely defined constructs

3. - Accessible, non-biased items

4. - Amendable to accommodations

5. - Simple, clear, and intuitive instructions and procedures

6. - Maximum readability and comprehensibility

7. - Maximum legibility

To address these points, Curriculum Associates considered several issues related to accommodations. Most accommodations may be grouped into the following general categories: timing, scheduling, presentation, setting, and response mode. i-Ready addresses each of these accommodations:

Timing: Students may need extra time to complete the task. The Diagnostic assessment may be stopped and started as needed to allow students needing extra time to finish. The Diagnostic is untimed and can be administered in multiple test sessions. In fact, to ensure accurate results, a time limit is not recommended for any student, though administration must be completed within a period of no longer than three weeks.

Flexible scheduling: Students may need multiple days to complete the assessment. Curriculum Associates recommends that all students be given multiple days, as necessary, to complete the i-Ready Diagnostic assessment (administration must be completed within a period of no longer than three weeks).

Accommodated presentation of material: All i-Ready Diagnostic items are presented in a large, easily legible format on the computer screen. There is only one item on the screen at a time, the bold font is large and friendly, and nearly all of the items for grades K–5 have audio support. i-Ready has an option for audio support for math items at grade levels K–5. Directions are read aloud, demonstrated visually, or generally self-evident, regardless of language abilities. Use of clear, concise, and chronological directions build student understanding. The program employs physical cues such as pointing or facial expressions, symbolic cues such as pictures and icons, and auditory cues such as asking a question.

Setting: Students may need to complete the task in a quiet room or with a small group of peers. This can easily be done, as i-Ready Diagnostic is available on any computer with internet access that meets the technical requirements. Furthermore, all students are encouraged to use quality headphones in order to hear the audio portion of the items. Headphones also help to cancel out peripheral noise, which can be distracting to students.

Response accommodation: Students should be able to control a mouse. They only need to be able to move a cursor with the mouse and to point, click, and drag.