Iroquois Middle School
DECEMBER 2022/JANUARY 2023 NEWSLETTER
FROM THE PRINCIPAL
Dear Iroquois Families:
As we look ahead to the end of the 2022 calendar year and the start of 2023, we are excited about the many new learning experiences that the New Year will bring for your children. I want to take this time to recognize all the hard work our teachers and staff continue to do in throughout the school in order to create these opportunities for our students. In addition, I want to recognize all the hard work you do at home to support your children and their success here at school.
This time of year is also an opportunity to renew and recommit to those good habits that serve our students so well. Below are some things you can continue to do at home in order to help your children be successful:
Take time to talk to your children about what they are learning at school each day. Ask them about what they are reading, what new concepts they are exploring, or what writing pieces they are currently working on.
Re-establish routines for homework and studying. Have a regular place and time for your children to do homework, such as a desk or table in a quiet room. Check with them to make sure they understand their homework and use it as an opportunity to better understand the work they are doing during their school day.
Be sure that your children are reading at home. Ask them about what they’re reading and talk to them about what you are currently reading. Perhaps even read and discuss the same book. Research tells us that the more often children read for pleasure, the stronger their reading comprehension becomes, setting them up for success in high school, college, and the professional world.
Encourage your children to attend school every day. The educational process requires a continuous sequence of instruction. When broken by a period of absence, this instruction can never be fully regained. The consistent contact of students with one another in the classroom and their participation in learning experiences under the supervision of a highly qualified teacher will help our students reach their full potential.
We also know that the most successful schools feature strong parent-teacher-school ties and relationships among families and teachers that are marked by a spirit of trust and collaboration. We are grateful to you, our families, for your continued effort to work with us to best serve your children, and we ask that you do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions, concerns, or feedback.
In closing, I wish you and your family a very happy holiday season and continued good health and prosperity in the New Year.
Iroquois Middle School
IROQUOIS CONTACT INFORMATION
Principal: Mr. Christian Zwahlen | email@example.com
Secretary: Ms. Susan Glastonbury | firstname.lastname@example.org
Main office: 585-336-0804
Health Office: 585-336-3091
- Nurse: 585-336-0816
Transportation: 585-336-2992 | Transportation website
District Office: 585-342-5500 | District website: westirondequoit.org
- Dec 1: Book Fair Family Event
- Dec 13: 5th Gr Orchestra, 6th Gr Orchestra & 5th/6th Gr Chorus Concert @ IHS 7:00 p.m.
- Dec 19: 5th Gr Band & 6th Gr Band @ IHS 7:00 p.m.
- Dec 26-30: NO SCHOOL - HOLIDAY RECESS
- Jan 2: NO SCHOOL - HOLIDAY RECESS
- Jan 3: School Resumes
- Jan 16: NO SCHOOL - MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY
- Jan 20: PTSA - 5th Grade Movie Night @ Irondequoit High School (DATE CHANGE)
- Jan 23-27: Great Kindness Challenge
- Jan 27: PTSA - 4th Grade Bingo 7:00 p.m. (DATE CHANGE)
Feb 2: Spirit Day – Blast to the Past
Feb 13-17: Black History Week
Feb 13-17: Random Acts of Kindness Week
Feb 14: 6th Gr Chorus Concert @ IHS 7:00 p.m.
Feb 21-25: NO SCHOOL – WINTER RECESS
Feb 28 : 6th Gr Orchestra @ IHS 7:00 p.m.
Mar 2: 6th Gr Band @ IHS 7:00 p.m.
Mar 24: PTSA – 6th Grade Glow Dance
Mar 30: Spirit Day – Tropical Day
Mar 31: Conference Day – No School K-12
Using ongoing feedback from staff and in alignment with the Restorative Practices implementation guide, our district has focused on building a common vision of RP and our Social-Emotional work. We have developed the following definition:
“Restorative Practices are a set of skills and processes for building community and healthy relationships, as well as responding to challenging behaviors in schools.”
In addition to providing professional development for all staff, we also worked to address how Restorative Discipline is similar and different from the typical definition of discipline, addressing misconceptions, and provided an overview of next steps for implementation. More recently, Grades 5-12 staff was able to engage in a two-hour training during Superintendent’s Conference Day on Nov. 10th, with different cohorts offered based on level of interest and understanding. The cohorts were as follows:
Community Building: Circle Overview – Review
This two-hour workshop reviewed and reinforced elements of a community-building circle (shared values and guidelines, talking pieces, center pieces, rounds, role of facilitator). Participants also experienced a community-building circle and shared their experience.
Cohort 2: Tier-2 Strategies (Active Listening, Affective Language and De-Escalation)
This workshop demonstrated how these strategies are used with students to teach self-expression, address conflict and engage students who are emotionally escalated. It also integrated our existing work with Therapeutic Crisis Intervention.
Cohort 3: Understanding Restorative Discipline
This workshop demonstrated how Restorative Discipline is similar and different from traditional discipline, providing an example of how it can be used to repair harm, and encourage participants to proactively build relationships to create a Restorative classroom environment.
We will continue to gather feedback from students, staff and the community, as well as collaborate with Partners in Restorative Initiatives (PIRI) and our RP Leadership Team to complete the following objectives and more:
Enhance professional development with community building and discipline
Leverage our teams to research and develop aligned expectations by grade-level band that can be embedded within School-Based Plans
K-12 implementation of common expectations and practices; as well as clearly defining and communicating them to students, staff and community members
Consistent use of data-inquiry and RP to build relationships and resolve conflict.
Please watch the video above by clicking on it there or via this link. If you have questions or concerns, reach out to Joe Jackson, Assistant Director of Counseling, Student Equity and Wellness at email@example.com
SEL SPOT (SOCIAL EMOTIONAL LEARNING)
C.A.R.E. POSTER COMPETITION WINNERS
FROM THE SCHOOL NURSE
When diagnosed with the flu, you are contagious for up to 7 days with the most contagious period being 3-4 days after diagnosis.
PERRY GROUND VISITS IROQUOIS
Perry Ground, a Traditional Storyteller and Cultural Educator, visited Iroquois and performed for all grade levels.
This assembly provided information to students about the Haudenosaunee Flag. Additionally, students were engaged in storytelling and the history and culture of the Haudenosaunee (sometimes called Iroquois), and the Native American people of New York State.
To watch a video of his presentation to K-3 students in our district, click here. It was modified for age level.
SERVICE CLUB COLLECTION FOR THE COMMUNITY FOOD CUPBOARD
Service Club would like to thank all the Iroquois families for their generous donations to the Community Food Cupboard.
LIBRARIAN HEADED TO IDITAROD IN FEBRUARY
K-3 Librarian Juli Westrich is well into her yearlong role as Iditarod Teacher on the Trail! Last March she was selected as the educational ambassador for the famous dog sled race and she has been posting journal entries and lesson plans for teachers around the world to integrate Iditarod into their curriculum. In February, she'll return to Alaska for the start of the 2023 Iditarod and travel along the Iditarod Trail (by plane, not by dog sled) reporting on the race to West Irondequoit classrooms and educators everywhere! Here is the link to her Teacher on the Trail journal!
The West Irondequoit Central PTSA serves all 10 schools in our district. By its mission statement it unites home, school and community as advocates for the health, education and well-being of all children so that they may become productive citizens in tomorrow’s world. To find out about fundraising and events that benefit our community (see graphic above), see what’s going on in our schools or learn how to become a member, read the WICPTSA newsletter at this link.
Please click this link to read Helmer Nature Center’s latest newsletter and learn more about its upcoming winter events. Stay up to date on events at HNC, our school district's "outdoor classroom," via Facebook at facebook.com/HelmerNatureCenter or the district website.
EMERGENCY CONTACT INFORMATION
Have a new cell phone number or email address?
Have a new work phone number?
Need to update your emergency contacts?
Be sure to keep your child's school informed of any changes to your phone numbers or emergency contact information. Update info directly parent portal or send in a note with your child. Thank you!