Monday Message

9.28.15

As I reflect on last week, the thing that sticks out to me the most is Open House. Thank you for the work you do to prepare for that evening. It was a busy night for sure, and a lot was accomplished. Most importantly, our families continue to feel welcome in our building and know that they play a role in their students' education. The feedback that I received was very positive, especially as we continue to create opportunities for our students to explore and create in unique ways.


Meanwhile, it's hard to believe that we are already at the end of September. It really has been a great start to the year, and things are moving, aren't they? I was talking to someone last week who made the observation that after the first few days back from the summer it feels like we never left. That's actually a good thing. Our students thrive on consistency, and as I visit classrooms it's clear that you are working your hardest to keep them engaged. And while they might not thank you with words, their actions this first three weeks say it. Students are on task, active in their learning, and putting forth an effort that shows just how much they value your role in their lives. Keep the students engaged and provide them some choice and great things will happen. Also, do me a favor this week; Please share with me the great things you are doing with your colleagues. I want to let the entire school community know the great things that are going on in this building. Join me in telling our school's story!

Calendar (AKA Where Will Tim Be This Week?)

Monday, Sept. 28:
  • HSA Meeting, 6:30 PM, MS Library

Tuesday, Sept. 29:

  • ELA Subject Area Team Meeting for 7th and 8th grade, after school

Wednesday, Sept. 30:

  • Act With Respect Always, 6th (8:35-9:40) 7th (10:45-11:50) 8th (12:40-1:45), LGI
  • District Technology Planning Committee, 8:00-3:00, HS LGI

Thursday, Oct. 1:

  • XFactor Organizational Mtg, 2:10, Main Office Conf. Room

Links that Spoke to Me This Week:

  • Strategies for Reaching Apathetic Students - An easy read from Edutopia about a topic that thwarts many of us at this level
  • Compassionate DIscipline: Dealing With Difficult Students - "Imagine that all your students have an invisible subtitle running along in front of them that is communicating to the adults in their lives what they really need. Everything else—the nonsense that comes out of their mouths and bodies during difficult interactions—is just noise, interference meant to get in the way of our reading and responding to their subtitle."
  • Formative and Summative Assessments in the Classroom - What exactly is the difference between formative and summative assessment? What role does immediate feedback play in the the effectiveness of assessment? How can I change-up assessment techniques in the classroom? All good questions and all answered in this article.

#OneNewThing

As we continue to build on the idea that we are all experts (and we just have to take the time to talk about what we're doing with each other), I have created a simple, one question Google form as a place to share the things that you are trying in your classroom. The goal of this is for me to share out with the rest of the building so that we can all learn from each other. I will continue to include the link to this form in my Monday Messages, and only I have access to the responses. I hope you take advantage of this simple opportunity to share the good things that are happening in your class. This is not about bragging. This is about making each other better.


Click here for the #OneNewThing Google Form

XFactor

I am excited that we will be continuing with our "XFactor" student team building and leadership group for boys this year. We are coming off some very positive experiences with the group last year, and we'll be using that momentum to propel us forward into more events this year. Our XFactor leaders are me, Kyle, Ken Passaretti, Bob Bishop, Brian Mockry, Rob McGough, and Pat Cronin. Let us know if there are any boys in the building that you think would benefit from building their capacity to be a leader, participating in something beyond the regular school day, and connecting with other students and adult allies.

Act With Respect Always Schedule

A reminder that our AWRA student assemblies will be happening on this Wednesday, September 30th. Coach Johns will be here to present to each grade level in the LGI for 60 minutes with a 5 minute buffer for settle time. I will call each grade down to the LGI when we are ready for you. Please wait for the PA announcement. You will also be given an Act With Respect Always banner for your classroom to go along with the presentation. How, where, and when you display it is your choice. Please let me know if you have any questions. The assembly schedule is as follows:


Grade 6 - 8:35 - 9:40

Grade 7 - 10:45 - 11:50

Grade 8 - 12:40 - 1:45

Another Reason to Love Fridays

How can you not smile when you see Caffrey and Mrs. Paszul trotting down the hall?! Even at four months old, Caffrey is making great strides in his Guiding Eyes for the Blind training program. Thanks for sharing him with us, Barb!
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