We are three months into the school year, and it has been heartening to watch students slowly get to know one another as they share their unique personalities, strengths, and interests. Given the nature of remote learning, it has taken longer to build those relationships than when we are in-person, but the connections are there, and they are strong. The authentic smiles and spontaneous laughter that I have observed in so many classes this past month have brought me a lot of joy.
One of the reasons I believe our children have been able to form solid relationships with their classmates and their teachers (even through TEAMS!) has everything do with you. You have been by their side supporting them, guiding them, and co-teaching them. We have asked you to meet with teachers on an ongoing basis as academic partners this year, in a way that has been new for many of us. Thank you for investing the time to do so. We value your partnership. We know that children do best when families and schools work together to help them achieve their full potential. While teachers can share expertise on curriculum and instruction, you are experts on your children – from birth through adulthood. You play an essential role in your child’s education by supporting learning at home and advocating for your children. Our teachers are here to listen and learn from you, as well as to make sure you have the resources and information you need as we move forward together.
The relationships being made in service of student learning are so incredibly important and we want those to continue to grow. If you have not yet signed up for conferences please take a moment to do so this weekend. If you need help with the Schoolsoft system, please email me and let me know!
Remote Learning or Virtual Academy.. What option is right for your family?
The District has two options available for student learning. Families have a limited opportunity to choose the option that works best for them. Use the link below to change your child's current learning plan (your child remains in their current learning plan if you do nothing). Your choice will remain in effect for the remainder of this school year.
The two options:
The In-Person/Remote Learning option will allow your student to transition to in-person learning when health and safety factors permit us to return to our classrooms. Parents who make this choice are committing to having their students attend school under any of the following situations:
• Fully in-person at any time
• Hybrid model (half days) mix of in-person and online work
• Fully remote instruction
The UCS Virtual Academy option is the district’s fully on-line option. Your student would remain in a virtual learning environment through the remainder of this school year.
Regardless of which option you choose, your student will be taught by qualified Utica Community Schools teachers with curriculum that will be parallel across the various learning environments.
Please take some time to discuss which option best works for your family now and into the future as your choice will remain in effect until the end of the school year.
IF YOU ARE PLANNING A CHANGE, YOU MUST MAKE YOUR CHOICE by 11:59 p.m. on November 15. You can make your choice by clicking on the link below. If you do not make a selection, your child will remain in their current learning plan.
Report Cards Delivered Tuesday, November 17th
During November, Havel will distribute reports cards electronically. The first marking period grades will be sent electronically to families after scheduled parent-teacher conferences at the end of the day on Tuesday, November 17, 2020.
To receive the report cards, parents will need to have a secure PowerSchool account. Parents who do not have access to a PowerSchool account will need to register for one prior to the end of the next marking period for second quarter report card delivery. The report cards will be automatically e-mailed to the address that is used to register the PowerSchool account. If you already have a PowerSchool account, you do not need to take any further action. The report card automatically will be sent to you electronically.
Virtual Art Update/Creative Corner
Hello Havel Hawk families. I as so excited to see all our wonderful art students again through our live Teams meetings. The meetings are going well and am pleased that many students are sharing their artwork with myself and their class. I am also encouraged to see so many students embracing technology and creating digital art as well. We have been developing many skills and learning important concepts in art. Here are some examples.
In grades K-3, we started of the year by discussing what art is. We then focused our learning on the elements of art. The students created many art works based the element of line. Next, students worked on portraits of people and characters, as well as self-portraits. We also learned about the principles of design including balance, movement, and pattern. Line owls, and silly monsters were made using these ideas. We also read some books and made art activities that followed. For instance, we read Ish, The Dot, and Harold and the Purple Crayon.
In Grades 4-6 we also focused on reviewing the elements of art, as well as taking a more in depth look at the principles of design. In addition to our more advanced study of portraits, we started to learn digital art platforms like Paint 3D, Sketchpad, and Kleki. The upper elementary students had the ability to make many choices between different lessons which included choosing between traditional and digital “art supplies”. In their art tile, students were able to create a booklet about the elements of art, making line robots, and practice artistic lettering. In addition, we were able to create Zentagle pumpkins, Spider web designs, and 3D foil spiders. We also looked at an inspirational video on the life of living famous artist Romero Britto and how he creates his colorful pop art in Miami.
3rd Grade Virtual Academy News From Mrs. Greenhlagh
The third-grade virtual academy students are hard at work! Our mathematicians are working on multiplication and division. We are also exploring Think Central and working to become more comfortable using this as a means of completing assignments and tests. The virtual geographers are learning that our community is part of the world, continent, country, and state. They are creating their own maps of Michigan to show off their skills as geographers. In science the students will begin our next unit on Magnetism and Electricity. Our virtual scientists will be working on experiments that deal with static electricity. We continue to practice our reading skills and have become quite comfortable navigating the McGraw-Hill site. We are currently learning about different types of nouns. We are having a wonderful time in our virtual classroom and I look forward to seeing how the students grow both academically and socially.
Hi Havel Families,
I would like to go over a few reminders about conferences:
- You will receive an email with a link you will use to attend each remote teacher conference. This email will happen a few minutes before your scheduled conference time.
- If possible, use your child’s school-issued computer, or download the TEAMS App on your phone or personal computer. If you do not have TEAMS, you can continue to Browser Option. Chrome and Microsoft Edge seem to work best.
- Please join and wait online until the teacher invites you into the meeting.
- PLEASE be on time. Teachers are scheduled back-to-back with conferences.
- Conferences will be limited to 15 minutes.
- If you were unable to schedule a conference with your child’s teacher, email the teacher for a conference.
- If you have technical issues during the conference, please email the teacher and a separate conference will be scheduled.
- The Website Link is: https://utica.schoolsoft.com/
Again, I recommend you use your child’s school-issued computer, or download the Microsoft TEAMS App. Please follow these directions once you receive your email with the teacher conference link:
When you receive the conference email from each teacher, click on their individual URL link just prior to the conference. If you do not have Microsoft Teams downloaded, click on Continue on this browser the next screen will open.
Click on Allow so Teams can use your microphone and camera.
Click Join Now.
Repeated News From Previous Hawk Weekly Newsletters Below
Dear Havel Families,
I am super excited to share that this year we are partnering with Nothing bundt Cakes to promote reading!
Every student will receive a monthly tracking sheet to record the titles of books that they have read along with the number of minutes spent reading. The goal is to read 400 minutes every month. Now that may seem like a lot but when you break it down, it’s 100 minutes per week or 13 minutes a day. Students can count minutes spent reading for silent reading or for our younger learners, they can count the minutes that an adult reads to them (for example, a story before bed). Chapter books count too! Just record the chapter and the minutes spent daily reading each chapter.
At the end of every month, the tracking sheets will get turned into me. They can turn them in one of two ways. The sheet can be emailed to me (email@example.com) or the students can return the sheet to their classroom teacher and the teacher will pass it along to me. I will then give each student a certificate to receive a free bundlet (mini cake) from Nothing bundt Cakes located on Hall Road. They do have curbside pickup if you are uncomfortable going inside the store. This program will run from November through March.
If you have any questions regarding this program please feel free to ask! You can either email me or call the office.
Your partner in education,