Staff Weekly Update

October 14, 2016

This week we saw the Chicago Cubs make an amazing comeback in the 9th inning and advance to the National League Championship Series. This just goes to show that no matter how behind you are or how bad the odds are against you, if you stick to it you can come out on top. To celebrate their win here is a little Chicago Cubs "Did You Know..."

1. The Cubs haven’t won a World Series title in 100 years but are favorites to win it this year

2. The Cubs have only won two World Series titles, and they won them in back-to-back years in 1907 and 1908.

3. Rumor has it the Cubs haven’t won a game in so long because of the curse of the goat. A fan tried to bring a goat to the game ~100 years ago, and they didn’t let him in, so he put a curse on the Cubs that they’d never win another World Series.

4. If a ball lands in the iconic ivy outfield wall and gets stuck, the batter is awarded a ground-rule double.

5. The Cubs have Hall of Famers at every position.

6. Both the Chicago Cubs and the Chicago White Sox originated from the same “Chicago White Stockings” baseball club team from 1870.

7. If you see a big W flag hoisted over Wrigley Field it means the Cubs won at home.

8. Wrigley Field was originally called Weeghman Stadium after its builder, Charles Weeghman. It was then called Cubs Park for 6 short years before finally settling on Wrigley Field in 1927.

9. Wrigley Field was the last MLB Park to get lights installed, in 1988. That means the Cubs only played day games at home before 1988.

10. Legendary shortstop and first baseman for the Cubs, Ernie Banks is nicknamed “Mr. Cub” because of his skill on the field and enthusiasm for the game and city of Chicago. He also is the first player whose number the Cubs retired, #14.

Thanks for all that you do and GO CUBS GO!


Digital Coach Corner

Matt Tombs, our Digital Learning Coach, will be at Mark Twain this coming week. If you would like to meet with him sign up for a time slot.

Have you ever wondered why flamingos are pink, how elevators work, or who invented the unicycle? Whether through everyday lessons and activities, or through the implementation of Genius Hour, encouraging this natural curiosity and imagination through questioning can lead to exploration and discovery in learners of all ages. Wonderopolis, which was created by the National Center for Families Learning, has become one of the most popular education sites today. Learners can view 1,700+ Wonders of the Day® (and counting), covering a vast range of topics. They can even submit their own questions to the Wonder Bank. Please see or email Matt Tombs at to learn more about this technology tool.

Teaching about the 2016 Election?

In this article in Usable Knowledge, Leah Shafer explores the challenge of teaching about this year’s presidential contest. Some school leaders are discouraging teachers from getting into this heated political arena, but discussions are bound to happen, and the question is how to handle them as part of every school’s core mission: getting young people ready for citizenship. “No matter what students grow up to do with their lives,” says Harvard education professor Meira Levinson, “they all have civic rights and responsibilities, so they need to be prepared.” Shafer lists some unique attributes of the 2016 election:

• Students may be more invested in this election than usual. “Something that has generally seemed distant and irrelevant to their own lives suddenly feels very personal,” says Rebecca Park after teaching about the campaign over the summer. Students arrived with especially strong opinions about the candidates.

• That doesn’t mean students are well-informed. A colleague of Park’s in the summer course found that often students didn’t have facts to back up their opinions about candidates, policies, and the inner workings of presidential campaigns.

• Students may have very strong emotional reactions to the campaign. “The rhetoric surrounding immigration, mass shootings, and police brutality may make students uncomfortable, angry, or scared,” says Shafer, “and they may bring those emotions into the classroom.” This may be especially true of African-American, Muslim, and Hispanic students.

• The campaign’s rhetoric may be difficult to confront in a school setting. Says Levinson, “Many of Trump’s statements seem to violate moral and civic norms that schools are committed to teaching: anti-racism, respect for others, democratic ideals, and anti-bullying.” This makes conducting a mock debate quite tricky.

• Essential questions are helpful. For example, one for civics educators might be, How should we live together?

• One suggested resource is a case study developed by Levinson, available free at Students can also look at candidates’ websites and draw their own conclusions about policies and the constituencies and regions of the U.S. that candidates represent.

“Civics in Uncivil Times” by Leah Shafer in Usable Knowledge, September 14, 2016,

Happy Birthday to.......

Chitra Salazar 10.4

Kim Trauth 10.4

Judy Collinsworth 10.14

Anne Tzakis 10.21

David O'Connell 10.30

Important Upcoming Dates

Saturday, October 15th

  • Cubs game @ Wrigley 8pm

Sunday, October 16th

  • Cubs game @ Wrigley 8pm

Monday, October 17th

  • Tier II/III Meetings Grades 1-4
  • Instructional Team Meeting @ 12:15pm

Tuesday, October 18th

  • PBIS Team Mtg @ 7:50am
  • 3/4 Math Team Mtg @ 8:55am
  • 1/2 Math Team Mtg @ 1pm

Wednesday, October 19th

  • K Math Mtg @ 9:50am
  • Early Release Day @ 11:30 (Follow AM PFA Sched)
  • SIP Day Starts @ 12:45pm
  • Cubs game @ Dodger Stadium

Thursday, October 20th

  • Cubs game @ Dodger Stadium

Friday, October 21st

  • Staff Meeting with Dr. Clay @ 7:50am
  • Tier II/III Meetings Grades 5-6

Morning Supervision Schedule

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