Staff Weekly Update

January 8, 2016

As a season of testing begins, don't let the vision that we are on a journey together as an Apollo family go by the wayside. Keep this in mind...

"I can't change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination." -Jimmy Dean

Thank you for all that you do!

Aaron & Lewis

ACCESS Testing Information


Here are the weeks we will be testing your students. This is a general schedule and you should have received an email to let you know the exact dates and times we will be testing your students. This is all new so we are not sure how slow or fast technology and tests will be going. We thank you in advance for you patience and understanding.

Kindergarten - various times throughout the day the entire time from all ESL Teachers.

Week of 1/11

- Koupas/Schultz

- Carriqui

- Salemi/Campagna/Liberto

- Cotromanes

- Schafer/Rabe/Levine

Week of 1/18

- Hoffmann

- Schafer

- Root/Reed/Sehner

- Swidzinski/Senatore/Smith

Week of 1/25:

- Palucki/Sandine

- LeVine/Rabe/Schafer

- Sanchez/Senatore

Week of 2/1: Make-ups/absents

-Your ESL Teachers

Winter MAP Testing Windows

3rd - 6th Grade Teachers,

Similar to our fall testing set up, please schedule MAP testing sessions - one reading test and one math test - amongst your team members, using your grade level Chromecarts. Our ESL Team will be utilizing some of the chromecarts for ACCESS testing, but they are working to not use carts assigned for MAP testing.

MAP Testing Windows

  • 6th & 5th Grades - January 11th - January 21st
  • 6th & 5th Grades Make-ups - January 22nd
  • 4th & 3rd Grades - January 25th - February 4th
  • 4th & 3rd Grades Make-ups - February 5th

AAC Brandy will be facilitating make-ups for this round of MAP testing. So, if you have a student or students who need to finish or make-up a missed test, fill in the needed information on the MAP Make-up Form.

From AAC Brandy Lokshin...

Coming soon to an inbox near you...Your username and password for exclusive access to The Daily Cafe!

  • Do you have questions about how to start the Daily 5 in your classroom? Find them here!
  • Questions about what the CAFE looks like with Common Core Standards? Find that here!
  • Questions about the Math Daily 3? Find it here!!
  • All this and so much more just for you!!

Upcoming Dates

Monday, January 11th

  • Daily 5 Cohort @ 7:50 a.m.

Tuesday, January 12th

  • School Leadership Team Meeting @ 7:50 a.m.
  • Office Team Meeting @ 10:00 a.m.
  • 6th Grade Tier Meeting @ 10:25 a.m.
  • Kindergarten Tier Meeting @ 1:20 p.m.
  • 2nd Grade Tier Meeting @ 2:00 p.m.

Wednesday, January 13th

  • Staff Meeting @ 7:50 a.m.
  • 5th Grade Tier Meeting @ 8:55 a.m.
  • 3rd Grade Tier Meeting @ 12:30 p.m.

Thursday, January 14th

  • Guided Math Cohort @ 7:50 a.m.
  • PFA Tier Meeting @ 7:50 a.m.
  • 4th Grade Tier Meeting @ 8:55 a.m.
  • 1st Grade Tier Meeting @ 2:00 p.m.

Friday, January 15th

  • Family Friday @ Lunch

Are Traffic-Light Behavior Charts Effective? (Marshall Memo)

In this Education Week Teacher article, former teacher Heather Bleakley Chang (now at Temple University) raises concerns about the commonly used discipline system that has misbehaving students move their name, usually on a clip or clothespin, from Green to Yellow or Red. When students in Chang’s primary-grade classes broke a rule and were told to move their name, she remembers the most common responses:

- A sad face – Did this mean the student was remorseful and would quickly shape up?

- A full meltdown – Did this show that the student cared about the infraction?

“Reflecting on my teaching experience and observations in classrooms as a supervisor and coach,” says Chang, “I’ve concluded that teachers use behavior charts to exert power over children they perceive as disobedient. In moments of frustration, teachers resort to the behavior chart to shame and threaten students into submission. It sounds harsh, but that’s what I was doing when using a behavior chart. I expected that students’ embarrassment would motivate them to stop the disruptive behaviors. I wanted students to consider that if their end-of-day color was red, their parents would be mad, and that would motivate them to get themselves together.”

Upon reflection, Chang has come to believe that there are three problems with the traffic-light approach to classroom management:

• There are significant differences in how students react to being asked to move their names – some care a lot, others brush it off. The variables are students’ level of sensitivity, how much they care about their teacher’s and peers’ opinions, and what their parents are likely to do if they get a negative report. Teachers have very little control over these factors.

• The Green-Yellow-Red behavior system teaches students to focus on the chart rather than their actions. The ratings, controlled by the teacher, become the ultimate judge of behavior, sorting students according to their level of obedience. The problem is that public shaming doesn’t reliably improve behavior.

• When students are downgraded on the chart, they’re not led to think through why the problem behavior occurred – the precipitating events or emotions that caused them to break a rule or expectation.

“When a child’s behavior commands our attention,” says Chang, “we need to ask ourselves, ‘What do I want this student to learn from my response to his/her action?’” She believes there are better ways to teach students how and why to respect their peers, teachers, classrooms, and themselves and become productive members of classroom communities. “When children act out,” she continues, “teachers should talk to them about their feelings and actions, and coach them through difficult situations. With teacher guidance, children learn how to manage their emotions more appropriately. In addition, talking to students about their feelings and actions builds student-teacher trust, and provides teachers with valuable information about each child’s needs.”

“Three Problems With Traffic-Light Behavior Charts” by Heather Bleakley Chang in Education Week Teacher, December 28, 2015,