PBIS Pride Newsletter
March 2016 | Volume 1 | Issue 4
CULTURALLY RESPONSIVE TEACHING
Earlier this year our district brought together a group of staff members to engage in conversations and learning revolving around Culturally Responsive Practices. This committee consisted of Cassandra, building-level administration, school counselors, and all levels of teachers. RMS was fortunate to have two representatives on the team; Michele Armentrout and Jesse Leonhardt. The group attended training on Building Culturally Responsive Systems. They specifically focused on finding ways to build our cultural competence as a means for all to celebrate, understand, and manage the dynamics of differences.
Our district vision is "Excellence for All." The “Making sure all students can succeed means understanding students’ cultural beliefs and practices. By engaging in Culturally Responsive Practices, you are forming an understanding about the values, beliefs, and behaviors of people from cultures that may be different from your own” (Wisconsin RTI Center). It is with purposeful effort, we aim to improve our abilities to become even more culturally responsive.
Practitioners who are culturally responsive:
- Are culturally competent
- Know about their students’ cultural beliefs
- Think of all their students as capable learners
- Have high expectations of all students
- Help students set short and long term goals for themselves
- Know each student
- Draw on students’ own experiences to help them learn
- Engage all students using a wide variety of teaching strategies and skills
- Help students deal with inequitable treatment of students of color
- Teach students to be critically conscious and knowledgeable about all students’ cultures
- Create a bridge between the students’ home and school lives – while meeting district and state curricular requirements
The committee members will be bringing the knowledge and resources from the training to each school in order to collaborate ways to continue to improve our practice as a district, as a building, as a team, and as an individuals.
End of the Year Rewards - Monday, June 6th
Over the next few months we will need your help with a few items:
- Wendy will be sending out an email to get help signing students up from May 11-13 in the morning. In the past we've set up tables in the commons and staff assists with taking money and helping students select which trip they want to go on.
- On June 6th, the 8th graders will leave in the morning. We will need some staff to attend the trip and some staff to stay behind.
- The 6th and 7th grade students will be attending their activities after lunch. We have worked with nutrition services to alter the lunch schedule for that day. In the morning there will be grade level activities.
Thank you for all of your help in making these trips available for our students. Below is the flyer that we sent home to parents with details.
March Reward - April 21
Our next reward day will be on Thursday, April 21. We have a scheduled professional development day that Friday. As we did last year, the reward day will be a teacher choice activity. In the past teachers have offered activities like a board game competition, knitting, gardening, or even a current events Jeopardy day. We'd encourage you to introduce students to something you're passionate about!
More details will come out as week approaches, however the current plan is to use only the regularly allotted FIT time.
The 8th grade staff took the ineligible students for the February reward and the Admin/Pupil Services staff will be hosting during the April reward. We will need some classroom spaces to host the students so if there are teachers that are planning on teaming up using other spaces, let us know as the date approaches.
You've been caught being Pawsitive!
Donna Neeman, Linda Haferman, and Sue Lindloff - Creating the super Super Star bulletin boards in the commons. We've received positive feedback from students, families, and staff!
- Mary Vey, Shaylae Szotkowski, Michele Miller, and Sue Moldenhauer - Creating awesome opportunities for our students to be involved in the school musical.
- Music Teachers - Supporting our students to have a successful Solo/Ensemble experience.
- Shelly Degrandt & Michele Armentrout - Coaching a successful forensic season.
Positive Phone Calls
In an effort to increase the positive praise Jon has challenged us to make a positive phone call home for EVERY student in our building over the new few months. Luke shared a google sheet named “Positive Phone Call List” with you in google drive. Click the link in the previous email to access it. Once you've contacted a parent go into the sheet and write your initials and date so we can record which students have already been contacted.