North Side Paw Prints

Staff Newsletter

November 8, 2013

Volume 5, Issue 13

Mission Statement: "Maximize potential in all people every day"

Vision Statement: "To create a culture in which all children can learn lifelong skills to succeed"

Congratulations Becca Moore and Cori Valenti for Going the Extra Mile this Month!

Weekly Quote

"Some people want it to happen, some wish it could happen, others make it happen."

~Coach K

Weekly Reflection

What have you done to challenge yourself in your tech skills in the last month? In the last week?

Upcoming Dates


Nov. 11th - Veterans Day Program 1:45-2:15; SOM Names Due to Venita

Nov. 12th - PTO Meeting at 5:30 in the library

Nov. 14th - Blood Draw for Health Screenings before school for those signed up; Fundraiser delivered (lobby will be open until 6 for late pick-ups)

Nov. 20th - Progress reports due to the office; Philharmonic Performance (4th-6th grade) at 1:00 and (K-3rd grade) at 1:45

Nov. 21st - Progress reports issued; 2nd Grade Concert 6:30 Cafeteria

Nov. 21st-22nd - Section 125 representative, room 112

Nov. 22nd - Fundraiser money due

Nov. 25th - Acuity B (LA and Math) Window Opens

Nov. 26th - Going the Extra Mile Nominees due to the jar in the office.

Nov. 27th-29th - Thanksgiving Break


Dec. 4th - Acuity (Science/Social Studies) Window Opens

Dec. 5th - Staff Meeting 3:10 in library

Dec. 6th - Father/Daughter Dance 7:00-8:00pm

Dec. 9th-13th - 3rd Grade go swimming 9:00-10:00am

Dec. 10th - Acuity B (LA & Math); Window Closes PTO Meeting 5:30 in library

Dec. 16th - Leadership Meeting 3:10 in conference room, SOM names due to Venita

Dec. 17th - Acuity B (Science/Social Studies) Window Closes; Winter Program grades K-1, 6:30 pm

Dec. 19th - Fundraiser Prize Assembly 1:30 in gym

Dec. 20th - End of 1st Semester

Dec. 23rd-Jan 3rd - Winter Break

This Week's Case Conferences

11/12 at 7:30: Wible and Kneller

11/12 at 3:00: Wible and Kneller

11/14 at 7:30: Ebert and Kneller

11/14 at 10:10: McHenry and Demske

11/14 at 3:15: Hamlin and Stoll

11/15 at 7:30: Frick and Stoll

11/15 at 3:00: Hamlin and Stoll

Featured Instructional Strategy of the Week

Primary Idea!

Check for writer understanding

During an evening presentation at Protsman Elementary (Hammond, IN), I introduced the 6 Traits of writing to a group of parents and revealed the common language that kids were learning from their teachers.

The presentation included a simple handout of the 6 Traits and the corresponding Smekens Education icons that teachers had been utilizing.

At the conclusion of the evening, a set of parents approached me and shared what their kindergarten daughter (who had tagged along that night) had written during the presentation. Check this out! She noted the gist of each trait and used all-by-herself conventions to explain what it meant. Wow!

This got me primary teachers, one way to conduct checks of understanding is simply to ask students to articulate what they know. What if you gave your own young writers this same handout (assuming you've been teaching the 6 Traits and using the Smekens Education icons) and asked them to list what they understand each trait to mean.

The results will surely provide you with new direction for what to reinforce and what to elaborate on.

Featured Video of the Week

In times when the stress feels overwhelming, we are reminded of the impact we as teachers make on the students who walk through the doors of our classroom every day. Watch this inspirational video to remind yourself why you do what you do for your students!

Educating Yorkshire - Mushy Finds His Voice - Full Video HD

Character Counts Pillar of the Month

November: Citizenship