PLC Newsletter

Kilgore Intermediate School, Week of May 2-6

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Being a teacher is a lot like running a marathon. Whether you’re prepping for a 5K or gearing up for the end of school (good luck, by the way!), take heed of these tips to get you from your bed to the start line, to the middle miles, and across the finish line successfully.

1. Know your limits. It's the basis of racing and the essential starting point! It is imperative that you know how far your legs and lungs (and patience) can carry you so that from the start you best appreciate your ability to complete the distance, without suffering any of the often sudden problems that can occur at the end of a difficult race (or school). Be ambitious but realistic! Bear in mind your past experiences. And if it's your first time, just focus on one thing: crossing the finish line.

2. Take the guesswork out of race morning. Lay out everything the night before.

3. Eat a highly digestible breakfast a couple hours before the start. Something like toast and jam, a banana or a bagel with a little peanut butter.

4. Arrive about an hour early. This allows time for parking and potty time without stress.

5. Drink lots of water! It's just a case of common sense and listening to your body: drinking when you're thirsty and eating when you're hungry!

6. Line up appropriately at the start. Start slower than you think you should—the first mile should feel comfortable. Start your day greeting each student with a smile and letting them know that you are glad they are here.

7. Break up the race mentally into thirds: 1. Keep it easy; 2. Hold pace; 3. Push and end with a strong finish. In both running and teaching, it is always a matter of technique. You must be able to remain consistent throughout. Success in a timed race is all about spreading out your energy evenly. We can learn a lot from experience: several rough drafts are often necessary before we have a final copy. This is not only true for runners and teachers, but students as well.

8. It’s okay to walk through the aid stations. No need to choke while you hydrate! When you feel the stress of the day begin to choke you, take a deep breath. Taking deep breaths is important to runners and teachers. You can also locate a running buddy to encourage you to keep running uphill when you feel like you can't take another step.

9. On the course, run a straight tangent; Avoid weaving in and out of people and taking wide turns. Keep your eyes on the finish line and don't be deterred from your final destination.

10. Often you will need to use strong mental willpower to be able to finish a race without slowing down too much. Burning thighs, dizziness or feeling queasy: crossing the finish line isn't for the weak! Your priority is not to do anything that could have a bad effect physically (for you or your students). In other words, don't push yourself too far (or your students). You don't want to put yourself off teaching or students off learning; instead, you should faithfully repeat what you learned during training.

To finish your race, concentrate on the immediate future: a straight line, a small hill, a bend. Don't think about the rest of what lies ahead before you finish the race. Focus on visualizing positive images. And above all, be happy to be a runner or teacher who dares to take part in such a meaningful sport that requires perseverance, vision, and heart.

Enjoy your run!

Girl Takes a Terrible Fall During a Race - But Wait Til You See What Happens Next!

Agenda for the Week

All "boots on the ground"! This is our last week of instruction prior to STAAR testing. Our focus is working with our students to ensure they have all the tools necessary to be successful on their assessments. We also want to equip students with the confidence they need going into testing next week.

As we prepare for battle (testing):

  • Know who your "target" students are.
  • Know what specific skills each student needs.
  • Be prepared and have a plan for how you are providing each student the intervention he/she needs.

With all students, focus on reviewing your readiness standards. Use your data to guide your instruction and the time you spend on specific skills. At this point it, is important to keep students engaged and motivated (not drill and kill using STAAR formatted worksheets). Anything we can do to make reviewing the material fun for students, the more likely they are to remember it.

As always, if I can help you in any way (data and reports, finding activities, encouragement, reinforcement, etc.), please let me know.

Articles to check out

Christy McElyea, KIS Instructional Specialist

I believe in you.

I believe in our students.

I believe in KIS.

KISD...where every student counts!