Color of Our Worlds May 2019

Educating ALL MCSD Students for Success!

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Please Complete Title I Parent Survey by May 17, 2019!

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A Year in Review

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Summer vacation is on the horizon— but it’s not here yet.

Here are three reasons to make sure your child comes to school on time every day:

1. Learning hasn’t stopped. Teachers are still planning lessons and teaching new content. If your child isn’t in school, he won’t learn this information. Studies show that students who miss just 10% of the school year in the early grades are still behind their peers when they reach high school.

2. Teachers often plan group projects for the end of the year. These projects help your child learn collaboration, problem solving and responsibility. These are skills he’ll need throughout his school career and in the workplace.

3. Regular attendance teaches kids to be dependable—which is an important quality for everyone to develop.

Source:E. García and E. Weiss, “Student absenteeism: Who misses school and how missing school matters for performance,” Economic Policy Institute, niswc. com/elem_absenteeism.

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Help Your Child Be on Time

Kids often seem to think of time as endless and schedules as unimportant. But learning to manage time is part of being a responsible student.

To encourage punctuality:

• Be a good role model. Instead of racing around in a mad dash, show your child the value of getting ready early.

• Create routines. For example, establish a “launch pad” where each evening your child can put everything that needs to go to school the next day.

• Take action. Nagging your child probably won’t help her hurry up. Instead, look for concrete actions that will make a difference. Hand your child her hairbrush. Help her put on her backpack.

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How to Help Your Child Prepare for Standardized Tests

Before the test

Be prepared

Many teachers will send information home about testing schedules and class preparation plans. Information that you should know includes:

  • What is the test and what will it measure?
  • Will the test results affect your child, school, or both?
  • Are there ways that you can help your child prepare for the test? (Narang, 2008).

Help your child in areas that are difficult for her

If your child has struggled with a particular area or subject in the past, you may be able to help her overcome some of that difficulty by providing some extra practice. Many workbooks target test preparation by offering practice exercises and questions like the ones students see on the test. Focus your practice on your child's weaknesses rather than her strengths so that she doesn't get bored with the exercises (Narang, 2008).

Give your child a chance to practice

If your child has trouble taking tests, try practicing test questions and studying new words. Your child's school or the library may have some samples to use. Keep the sessions short, and set small, manageable goals so that the extra practice boosts your child's confidence (Narang, 2008).

If you have concerns about the test or testing situation, talk with your child's teacher

Discuss your concerns with the teacher and/or school administrator. If you're not satisfied with the outcome, however, you can reach out to some other organizations that monitor testing, including your local PTA, The National Center for Fair & Open Testing or the ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and Evaluation (Narang, 2008).

If you believe that your child's difficulty with standardized tests may be the symptom of a problem such as a language or learning difficulty, speak with your child's teacher to learn if your child qualifies for any assessment accommodations.

On test day

Make sure your child gets a good night's sleep and eats a healthy breakfast

Many teachers report that students who don't do well on tests haven't gotten enough sleep, and haven't eaten breakfast on the morning of the test. Doing both of these things will ensure that your child is working at full capacity (Narang, 2008).

Make sure your child is prepared

Some schools may supply the tools your child needs for the test, such as pencils, an eraser, paper, and a calculator. Others may require the students to bring those materials themselves. Check with your child's teacher to see if you need to provide your child with any of these materials. Also, check to see whether you child will be able to make up the test if she is sick on test day (Narang, 2008).

Remain positive

Staying calm will help your child stay calm. If she gets nervous about the test or is likely to experience anxiety during the test, help her practice some relaxation techniques that she can try once she's taking the test (Narang, 2008).

After the test

What about the results?

Assessments vary from test to test, but the test scores should include information that helps you interpret the results. Talk with your child's teacher if you have any questions about the test results. You may also suggest that the school offer a testing information session to parents (Narang, 2008).

Review tests with your child

Help your child review any parts of the test that she did not understand (Narang, 2008).

Retrieved from

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D you help your child prepare for tests?

1. Do you write test dates on your family calendar and avoid scheduling big activities the day before?

2. Do you encourage your child to study a little each day for several days before a test?

3. Do you make sure that your child gets a good night’s sleep and a healthy breakfast before a test?

4. Do you suggest that your child dress in layers to be comfortable on test days?

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Spring Forward Ready for the Test. Ready for Life.

It’s almost time for your child to take the annual state test in math and English language arts. To see what’s expected of your child, check out the grade-by-grade practice test and how it measures real-world skills, like problem-solving and critical thinking.

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ESE Parent Survey Open Till May 31, 2019!

Parents of Exceptional Student Education (ESE) students - there's still time to complete the annual 2018-19 ESE Parent Survey! Each year, the Florida Department of Education surveys parents of children with an individualized education plan (IEP) to determine how well schools are partnering with its families to promote parent involvement in each child’s education process.

The survey is open to parents through May 31, 2019. If you have not done so already, please visit to complete the survey which will assist us with improving educational programming for our ESE students.

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Thank you for taking a moment to complete our 2019-2020 Satisfaction and Engagement Survey. These surveys are used as a tool to help us assess areas where we are succeeding as a district, as well as areas for improvement. Your time and thoughtful feedback are greatly appreciated.

Parent Survey (English)

Los Padres Encuesta (Espanol)

Student Survey (Grades K-2)

Student Survey (Grades K-3)

Annual Earth Day Program at Warfield Elementary School!

Warfield Elementary has their annual Earth Day Program. IMS band joined in the celebration and 2nd grade students sang songs that supported our Green School Efforts to help the Earth.

The Warfield students voted on an Earth day president and this year the winner was The Majestic manatee!

Warfield was awarded the Green School of excellence again this year!

Varun Singh of Pinewood Elementary School is Winner of Academic Games - Social Studies Division

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Writing Boot Camp at Warfield Elementary School

Warfield Elementary literacy coach Ms. Bacchiochi hosted ten 2nd grade classes in a week long writing boot camp. This boot camp is not only beneficial to students but also coaches teachers on how to support their amazing writers. Ms. Bacchiochi has hosted this writing boot camp for the entire school year (over 750 students)!!! Way to go Warfield writers!
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Book Tasting at SeaWind Elementary School

Mrs. Stengel's 2nd grade class participated in a "Book Tasting". The library was transformed into a restaurant where each student was able to dine at the following places (habitats): mountains, rain forest, desert, water. Students sampled several dishes (books) to determine which "tasted" the best. They sampled the food by reflecting on the first bite, the cover. They described how it "tasted" by reading 2-4 pages and how the "chef" (author) hooked them. Then they rated their sample plate. Students did this in all four restaurants and completed the task by submitting a restaurant review.
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Mrs. Skmoro's 3rd grade class and Mrs. Spooner's kindergarten class joined together to share their reading growth by partner reading!
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Warfield Elementary primary classes adopted 3rd and 4th grade classes to spread positive affirmations to students in preparation for FSA testing!
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Poetry - More than Rhymes!

Poetry is for all ages and for all occasions. There are poems about nature, about sports, about people; some poems rhyme, others don’t; some inspire art, some are inspired by art. Some poetry is music whether a rap or a ditty for a young child. All poetry is best when shared. Certainly most poems deserve to be read aloud. So celebrate words and art this month and every month!
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Help your child reflect on the year and celebrate success

As the school year winds down, it’s a great time to help your child look back, look forward, give thanks and celebrate.

Here’s how:

• Talk to your child’s teacher. Ask about your child’s strengths and weaknesses. How has she improved? Where does she need more work? Ask what you can do to help your child over the summer.

• Talk to your child about the school year. Ask what she thinks went well. Talk about what challenged her most. Help her figure out what changes she should make for the upcoming school year.

• Review your child’s successes. Look over schoolwork you’ve saved during the year. Point out how much your child has learned—how many new words, for example. Or how she can add and divide. Or how her writing has improved.

• Help your child set learning goals for the summer. Should she spend more time reading? Should she practice math concepts? Guide her, based on the suggestions from her teacher.

• Encourage your child to thank those who have made the year a good one—the teacher, bus driver, librarian, food service worker, etc. This will help her appreciate how many people have helped her.

• Celebrate with a special activity. It doesn’t have to be elaborate or cost anything. Just make plans to enjoy some one-on-one time with your child.

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Share a laugh, strengthen bonds and honor service with your child this month on these special days:

• May 5—World Laughter Day. Check out some joke books from the library for family members to read. Have everyone tell their favorite jokes at dinner.

• May 15—International Day of Families. Discuss what family means to you. How is your family special?

• May 18—Armed Forces Day. With your child, do something special to thank someone who is serving in the military

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i-Ready Progress Monitoring Assessment dates have been updated.

Ready Progress Monitoring Assessment dates have been updated.

The following reasoning was shared:

1. In order to provide students the best opportunity to show mastery of the standards in ELA to meet the Florida Dept. of Education Grade 3 promotion requirement (good cause exemption) by assessing at the end of the school year, after the grade 3 FSA ELA assessment has been administered.

2. Ensure consistency among all grade K-3 teachers regarding the student performance measure identified as their Student Learning Growth score for the evaluation process.

The window is below.

*Only students that did not pass the FSA Grade 3 Reading and did not meet the concordant iReady score.

**SAT10 will be administered at school sites as applicable.

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The Education Foundation of Martin County received the Impact 100 grant for $100,000. This grant will be used by the Education Foundation to expand PLAYS (Purposeful Language Acquisition Yields Success) across the district in our elementary schools. PLAYS promotes language, literacy, and social interaction with students at the kindergarten level. Congratulations to the Education Foundation and thank you for your continuous efforts.
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PLAYS PROJECT at Hobe Sound Elementary School Made Possible Via Support of The Education Foundation of Martin County!

Hobe Sound Elementary is proud to announce the Plays Project. (Purposeful Language Acquisition Yields Success)

With the approval of a $10,000 grant awarded by Martin County Education Foundation, written by principal, Dr. Memmer-Novak, Hobe Sound Elementary’s kindergarten students are now participating in a daily language rich and structured play program.

With the assistance of Ms. Julie Thill-Stellman, Speech and Language Pathologist, the Plays Project is off to a great start!

The Plays Project grant was written by Dr. Memmer-Novak, knowing that many of our students come to school with limited language experiences. We also know that by providing purposeful teacher led play is an important part of early language development for students.

A total of 33 play kits were purchased and organized for the student play centers. The play kits are rotated weekly throughout the kindergarten classes.

A typical week of a Plays Project center looks like:

On the first day of the school week the students are introduced to a new play center ‘theme.” During this time, the teacher and students talk about and gain background knowledge about the play “theme.” The teacher provides details and descriptions about how play should look in these centers. The teacher will also assign specific roles and discuss/show and model to the students how those roles work. For example; with the Flower Shop play kit, the teacher can assign roles such as a cashier, a florist, delivery person, floral designer and a customer.

The goal of the Plays Project is to provide purposeful play opportunities for the children. By promoting language rich opportunities and communication, the students will develop their literacy, vocabulary, math, cooperative social interaction skills, problem solving and collaboration skills.

“Sharing the Benefits of Play” Workshop at HSE with Mrs. Galasso

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In January 2019, Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order 19-32, calling for the elimination of Florida's current academic standards (known as Common Core standards) by January 2020.

Florida Department of Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran is reviewing the academic standards for Florida’s Kindergarten through grade twelve students and will provide recommendations to Governor DeSantis ahead of the January 2020 deadline.

As part of this process, the Florida Department of Education is seeking public input to find out how parents and the community feel about the current standards and what suggestions they have for improvement.

Please click here to take the state's survey. If you have additional questions or would like to receive updates on the process, please email

Find low-cost internet and affordable computers in your area.

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Make online safety a priority in your home

Technology has changed how students learn and how they socialize. Millions of kids in all age groups are online every day—at home, at school, at friends’ homes, at the library—and many are creating online content.

To keep your child safe when he’s online:

• Discuss rules and expectations. Use software that helps protect children, but supervise carefully, too. Allow your child to communicate online only with people you both know.

• Set guidelines. Establish times when technology is not allowed, such as during meals. Set a time when all devices must be turned off for the evening.

• Remind your child not to reveal personal information online, such as his name, phone number, school, passwords or location.

• Keep internet access out of your child’s room. Let him go online only when you can see what he’s doing.

• Learn about the websites your child wants to visit and the apps he wants to download. Make sure you approve of the content.

• Encourage your child to tell you if something inappropriate occurs while he’s online. Report your concerns to the authorities.

• Stay informed about online safety.

For more safety tips, visit (Family Online Safety Institute) and (National Center for Missing and Exploited Children).

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Martin County School District Title I Schools and Program Staff

Elementary Schools:

 Hobe Sound Elementary

 JD Parker Elementary School

 Pinewood Elementary School

 Port Salerno Elementary School

 Seawind Elementary School

 Warfield Elementary School

Secondary Schools:

 David Anderson Middle School

 Indiantown Middle School

 Spectrum Academy

 Willoughby Learning Center

Title I Program Staff

Shela Khanal, Director of Title I Programs

Debra George, Coordinator of Title I Programs

Deb Stull, Coordinator District Title Programs: ELL, Immigrant, and FIT

Casey Vasko, Federal Programs/ Equitable Services Liaison

Yvonne Blanco, Title I Department Secretary