Beating the Odds

Lakeview Staff Newsletter - March 8

Moving the furniture

Never try to squeeze a 3-hour topic into 45 minutes in a staff meeting. That's one of my biggest professional learnings this week. We will be returning to our conversation about workshop in our next staff meeting, because it's that important. In the meantime, here are the three most important pieces from our time at Blakewood on Monday and our staff meeting Wednesday:
Big picture

Moving the furniture, continued ...

As I mentioned Wednesday, the teachers at Lakeview have accumulated 4 years of expertise in TC writing and 3 years in TC reading. And it is one heck of a knowledge base. The joy of reading and writing is evident in every classroom here. That is why we can have this conversation about how to use workshop in a more flexible way in order to be responsive to our students based on their data.

But thinking flexibly is not easy. Remember ... we're not doing anything else or anything new. We're rearranging how we use what we already have in place in order to meet student needs.

When the furniture in your living room doesn't work with the traffic flow through the room, you don't buy new furniture - You rearrange it for better traffic flow. Or you might rearrange when you have a party ... or when you put up a tree at the holidays. We rearrange in order to be responsive to the needs that present themselves.

Here's my simplified message for you right now: Trust yourself. Shorten the time you spend reading TC guides. Use that same time to look at student work instead. Rearrange the way you use workshop time to respond appropriately.

Looking Ahead

Monday, March 11

Report cards due by 8 a.m.

Summer school recommendations due by 8 a.m.


Tuesday, March 12

District Character Ed Leadership team 4 p.m.


Wednesday, March 13

All-school field trip to Admiral's game. See below for more info.


Thursday, March 14

PTO meeting 6-7 p.m. (note the 6:00 start time this month)


Friday, March 15

Report cards sent home

Sunshine event after school


Tuesday, March 19

GOLT meeting 3:45 p.m.

Lakeview concert 6:30 p.m.


Rescheduled upcoming staff meetings:

Cancel the staff meeting in the morning on 3/20 (morning after concert)

Grades 3-5 plan to meet from 3:45-4:30 on Wednesday, March 20

Grades K-2 plan to meet from 7:30-8:15 on Thursday, March 21

We will continue our discussion about workshop, but tailored to different levels.

Assembly Appreciation

Thanks to everyone for your help with the assembly today. Special thanks to Mrs. Hillstrom for her coordination, to Roxanne and Cortney for helping with Golden Lions and the student pictures in the slides, and the specials teachers for the new traveling trophies. It was great to recognize student character, student academic growth, work in specials, and our students that have never been tardy this year. We continue to believe in the quote that says "Who you are is just as important as what you know."

Our first 14 students celebrating academic growth!

Academic Growth winners

3-5 Teachers - Forward testing

Please be sure to do this with your students well in advance of Forward testing. From Brian's email:

In preparation for the Forward Examination, please make sure all of your students verify that they have the correct app. To do so, have students turn off their Chromebook. After restarting, do not log in. Click on apps, then DRC Insight Online Assessments. Double check that Forward comes up and not Access. If they do still have Access, have them restart again. Any students who cannot get Access to switch over to Forward will need to bring their Chromebook to the library to get Powerwashed.


Here's the schedule that 3-5 teachers have provided for Forward testing:

4th grade - April 2, 3, 4, 8

3rd grade - April 8, 9, 10, 12, 15

5th grade - April 15, 17, 18

Make up testing - April 29

This means that for most of April, our south hallway will need to be quite quiet to support productive testing environments.


Special ed teachers - be sure to get your accommodations entered into the form sent by Leo. Brian Gannon will handle accommodations the same way we handle them for tests like the ACT.

Structural Items

Admiral Game Wednesday - Buses leave at 9:15. Bring a sharp pencil for each student. Make sure you get your bus driver's cell phone number. We will have a sign for each of our 7 buses. Stay in your classroom until we call for you to board. Sit close to your ticketed seats (we know it's never quite perfect). The classroom teacher is responsible for holding on to all of the tickets for your group - do not distribute ahead of time. Have fun! Thanks, Rachel, for coordinating!


School supplies in 132 - It's that time of year when kids may need extra school supplies. These are donations meant for individual students who may be in need (not to use as general classroom supplies).


Keys and fobs - Everyone that has a building fob and/or interior door key received a letter to sign. This letter was placed in your mailbox on Thursday. Please return to Roxanne by Tuesday, March 12.


Family newsletter - Link to this week's family newsletter


Elementary Blackout Dates - Here is a link to the calendar

Character Dares & Trauma Sensitive Schools

This dare is fun. I used to challenge my high school students that I had a story for any topic they could throw at me. See what you come up with ...
Big picture