Elementary Curriculum Connection

November 2014

Croffut's Corner

We are well into the first half of the school year and it's hard to believe the holidays are upon us. As we approach the beginning of a new six weeks, the elementary education department continues to focus on supporting each teacher in all content areas. Our goal is to share the resources and provide in house support needed to provide appropriate and rigorous instruction using research based practices.


In literacy, we focus our attention on getting "back to the basics" by refining our instructional practices in Guided Reading and Reading Workshop. As a county we embrace both of these crucial components of a balanced literacy framework, and invite all teachers to participate in the professional development currently available for each. If you are unable to attend, there are other online professional development opportunities that will be available throughout the year. 2014-2015 Literacy Professional Development


In math, our district's focus is on enhancing our knowledge of Content Standards and the Standards for Mathematical Practices. Math instruction should create opportunities for students to learn mathematics by exploring mathematically-rich tasks. Actively engaged students will develop their mathematical understanding by sharing strategies, ideas, and approaches with one another. During these lessons, the teacher's role is to facilitate learning by posing tasks and asking questions that guide students' understanding, and assessing students' mathematical understanding.


We have partnered with Dr. Drew Polly, Associate Professor, Co-director Professional Development School Network, at UNC Charlotte, to provide math professional development for our teachers. He will also assist in the process of revising the current math pacing guides for the 2015-2016 school year.


Along with the math PD offered this year, the district's math curriculum committee is continuously revising the math pacing guides to include resources aligned with the NC Content Standards and provide easier access to curriculum documents. These resources can be found on our district's Google site. https://sites.google.com/a/ucps.k12.nc.us/elementary-content-resources/


The most helpful resource that can be used to provide guidance and conversation during PLCs is the DPI Math Unpacking Document. This document provides descriptions of what each standard means a student will know, understand and be able to do. This document along with additional math resources can be found on the math DPI wiki-space. http://maccss.ncdpi.wikispaces.net/Elementary


The elementary education department looks forward to providing continued support as we work together to serve the students of Union County Public Schools. Please contact your school's Instructional Content Facilitator with any questions, comments, or concerns. Your feedback is valuable and necessary in order to continue to address the needs of the district.


Sincerely,

Cindy Croffut

Director of Elementary Education

Secretary of Elementary Education

I am pleased to announce that Tari Markowski is the new secretary for Elementary Education. Ms. Markowski replaces Liz Potter, who has transferred to HR as a Licensure Specialist.


Tari.Markowski@ucps.k12.nc.us

Read to Achieve

mCLASS and Fountas and Pinnell Assessment Dates

MOY: Jan 7-30

EOY: April 27-May 15


Third Grade Teachers

If a third grade teacher anticipates a student will reach a Level P at the MOY assessment and be exempt under the RtA legislation, a teacher other than the teacher of record should assess the student. If the teacher does not anticipate the student will approach a Level P, the teacher of record can continue to complete the assessment. The same guideline will apply for EOY administration as well.


Each principal will determine the school's assessment procedures and communicate this process at the school level.

Math Textbook Adoption

The state has released funds to purchase materials and resources for math instruction. There were limited textbook submissions to the state due to the requirement that any textbook being considered must be comprehensive enough to cover the primary objectives outlined in the standard course of study for all grades. Aside from the limited textbook submissions, the funds provided by the state will not be enough to purchase a complete textbook adoption. The released funds, however, do not have to be used to purchase textbooks but can be used to purchase other materials and resources that will support math instruction.


To begin the process, the district math committee will create a needs assessment survey for all teachers to complete. Based upon the feedback, the committee will research and collect samples of materials that meet the needs indicated on the survey. We will then form a committee of various stakeholders and this committee will review the materials and make recommendations for adoption.

Spelling Bee

Each school will conduct a school Spelling Bee by December 5, 2014. The Spelling Bee winner from each school will participate in the 2015 County Spelling Bee which is scheduled Wednesday, January 28.

Unison Music Festival

Mark your calendar. Unison Music Festival is scheduled March 6. Music teachers will select approximately 200 fifth grade students from all 30 schools to participate in the music festival. Students will have an opportunity to sing in the choir or play in a recorder or percussion ensemble. Students from across the county will practice all day and give a final performance that evening.

Anchor Charts Support the Learning Environment

An anchor chart is a tool created and used to support and scaffold student learning. Anchor charts are created during the lesson with the students and can serve to support one lesson or a series of lessons. Anchor charts can be created to support learning in all content subjects.

November Events

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December Events

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