Galloping Gazette

A newsletter for the Faculty and Staff - Week 10/22-10/26

Put Students First • Seek Growth • Be Open to Change Do Great Work Together • Value Difference

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Colts P.R.I.D.E in action - Twitter style

Are you on Twitter yet? Check out this great article from Mr. Doss about the power of Twitter!

Principal's Message for the week

Earlier we talked about choosing JOY by seeing the positives in our everyday lives no matter the stressor. This meant that some of us needed to pick up others when needed. I have seen that all over the Farm and I am no exception. As the flu/strep crud season has started, it knocked some of my energy down. However, this week, my inbox was inundated with invitations of lessons that were filled with authentic student agency, PBLs, and high levels of engagement. The excitement that I felt from each of you when you were describing what you had planned was enough to give me a jolt of energy. However, seeing your purposefully planned lessons come to life and seeing the excitement from the students was better than any medicine that a doctor could prescribe.

Recently, I came across a beautiful quote by Melody Beattie:

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.

Everyday I come to work full of gratitude and I am so grateful to work with such a caring staff. Every morning when I enter the building, I am consistently taking a breath, thinking about how thankful I am to be surrounded by incredibly talented educators. Thank you for working hard to create experiences for our students that make your lessons stick!


Congratulations !

Please join me in congratulating Mary Stewart as she has accepted a position as a Reading instructional specialist in Teaching and Learning. It is so bittersweet as we are excited to see you spread your amazing gift to other teachers in the division, but we are going to miss your positive energy and strong leadership!
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Please join me in congratulating Bevin as she has been selected as an Emerging Leader in early childhood education through NAEYC. NAEYC has awarded Bevin the Lasting Legacy Scholarship which will allow her to attend the National Conference in NYC. We are so excited for you!
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Keep these coming!

Please check out our form below to see how Mrs. Porter and myself will be celebrating our students and continuing our positive culture and environment.

Morning Meeting Moment

TIP OF THE WEEK: As you get more comfortable in the routine, be mindful of the ratio of teacher talk:student talk. A strategy like keeping the same sharing routine all week, but varying the prompt, can get students accustomed to the routine, and will not necessitate constant reminders and voiceovers from you, as the teacher. Let's make that student voice louder.

Colts Pride in Action

As part of our purposeful work to design a school culture where our PRIDE is encouraged and celebrated (Innovative Leadership Disposition, Transformational Learning), each week a staff member or group of staff members will be highlighted for demonstrating one aspect of P.R.I.D.E

Innovative PBL!

Bravo to Tennys and Whitney for organizing and creating a PBL for their kinder students. The students used toy trucks, masking tape, and magnets to build a truck that could navigate a road course with only using a horseshoe magnet. This task required the students to use all of their 5Cs. The result was groups of our little learners moving magnets to be best spot on their truck and not only using words like repel and attract but applying them. Well Done!


Select K students will be testing in room 7 on Tuesday, October 23rd all day. Please refrain from using the room on this day.

Quarter 1 District Benchmarks

Quarter 1 Benchmarks will begin soon.

  • Math is to be given the week of October 29 - November 2

  • (will review data week of November 5)

  • Language Arts is to be given the week of November 5 – November 9

  • (will review data week of November 12)

  • Content is to be given the week of November 12 – November 16

  • (will review data week of November 19)

Please note that these assessments should be given under testing conditions. Students should be encouraged to utilize scrap paper and testing strategies. Accommodations should be provided as indicated in IEPs and 504s. Only students with IEPs, 504s, and ESL plans should receive accommodations. Extra assistance and/or direction should not be given as these assessments are intended to show a student's current proficiency level. If your grade level needs to make a change to these testing windows, please speak with me.

VBCPS Wants Your Input!

VBCPS seeks community's input to shape the division's future strategic direction

For the next three months, Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) administration is giving the community the opportunity to weigh in and help guide the future of the school division. Staff is beginning the process of developing a new strategic plan, which will be in place from 2020-2025, and the first step is gathering input from the public via a Virtual Town Hall open from now until Dec. 28.

As part of the town hall, visitors will be asked to reflect on the graduate profile and provide insight into how the school division can best prepare students in achieving those attributes.

After the Virtual Town Hall closes, input will be shared with a steering committee comprised of students, parents, teachers, school division staff and leaders from higher education, the military, community organizations and businesses. That committee will identify priorities and draft the next strategic framework, which will be shared for public comment before it goes to the School Board for adoption later in 2019.

To learn more about the existing Compass to 2020 strategic plan visit

Who likes to wear jeans? Check out two ways you can support a great cause and be comfy at the same time!

Start the countdown!!!


*This is not mandatory, but it is a great way to build in the 5Cs in as big or small of way in your plans for that day. Mr. Doss is ready to collaborate with any teacher that is ready to take on this day.




Get ready for a day of CREATING.

Watch the live stream, ask the presenters questions

and MAKE all day.

Create what you wish existed!

Share what your students create using #GlobalMakerDay on Twitter.

Check it out here...

Shout Outs

Thank you, Al, for arranging for classes to do the pumpkin catapult experiment in the innovation lab! Authentic learning experience for all and covered several objectives. The kids loved it and we look forward to future experiments! - Michelle N.

Thank you to Ms. Jacobs for always keeping it straight on who is where, and if the paper work is all good! She makes my days smooth! - Al

Thank you to Mrs. Bagnall, Mrs. Rodriguez, Mrs. Nicolosi and Ms. Willett for coming to the Innovation Lab. Science, Engineering and Math in Action! The kids had a great time and learned while creating! - Al

Thank you to Ms. Young, Mrs. Cochran, Ms. Kane, Mrs. Rockwell and Ms. Backer for being a part of the Schoology Champions Meeting on Tuesday. It was a great meeting and we learned a lot about using Schoology! - Al

Shout out to Al for always being around and ready to help! I think I reached my quota for the year this week! - Michelene

To Susan C. for her tech savvy helpfulness! - Michelene

Thank you Sharon, Donna, September, Nicole, Abbe, Fatima, Al, Karen, and Frances for your contributions and ideas to a dynamic PBIS team. #PBISTEAMWORK - Patti P.

Kudos to Patti C, Robin, and Al for assisting with make-up IPT testing and the testing process in Schoology for the first time. -Robyn & Patti

Shout out to Jackie and Christine who missed a lunch period this week dealing with a student. Thank you to many of you that this happens to on a certain day and we do not even know you missed a meal. Thank you - Patti & Robyn

Shout Out to whoever cleaned the back doors!! Thank you! - Karen C.

If you have any shoutouts, please send them to Mrs. Backer and Mrs. Jacobs by Thursday.

Hashtags of the week






10/25 - Robyn Backer

10/27 - Jennifer Morrick

Schedule for upcoming weeks

Monday, October 22nd

  • United Way Begins-See email today regarding new electronic version
  • Coaches Meeting @ 8:30
  • Mrs. Ortiz, T/L here to do math learning walks.
  • Girls on the Run 2:40p - 4:20p

Tuesday, October 23rd

  • Smarty Ants (During PE Classes 1st & 2nd and K at 8:00)
  • 5th Grade Jamestown Outreach (5th Grade Classrooms)
  • IELS testing for select K students in Rm. 7
  • Pre-K Hunt Club Farm Field Trip 9:30am- 1pm
  • PAC Meeting @ 3pm (Library)
  • Coldstone Pie Sales Begin
  • Mrs. Porter OOTB PM

Wednesday, October 24th

  • Girls on the Run 2:40p - 4:20p

  • Staff and Students - Please consider wearing orange with your favorite jeans to support Unity Day.

Thursday, October 25th

  • Eco Club 2:40pm-4:40pm
  • Beach Bag Drive! Any staff who contributes $5.00 may wear jeans :)

Friday, October 26th

  • 1st Grade Hunt Club Farm Field Trip 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 5th Grade Egg Drop 1:20pm-2:20pm


Monday, October 29th

  • Girls on the Run 2:40p - 4:20p

Tuesday, October 30th

  • Today is Checklist Day! Make those lists and get to checking!

Wednesday, October 31st

  • Girls on the Run 2:40p - 4:20p

  • Happy Halloween!!

Thursday, November 1st

  • Today is National Author's Day! Introduce your students to some books by great authors.

Friday, November 2nd

  • 1st Grade Gifted Screening