Monday Message


I want to start out by thanking everyone for the robust discussion during our faculty meeting last week. It's never easy to talk about challenging topics like how we can better address diversity in school, and it's truly comforting as a principal to know that Kyle and I can turn to you for help. The culture of support here is one of our greatest strengths. I have received some good suggestions so far, and I promise that I will be taking the time to really dig into them and respond over the next week or so. Keep 'em coming. I'd especially like to think about how we can use February as Black History Month to raise awareness throughout the building.

I'd also like to invite you to attend this month's Board of Education meeting which will be hosted here at OWWMS on Tuesday, January 19th. There are two big reasons:

  1. We will be giving a short presentation on our MakerSpace celebrating the work that has been done so far and discussing plans for the future. We will be joined by students and staff to show the board how it has been embraced by the building, and we'd love your support.
  2. Although the MS may not be at the top of the list for big structural changes during the Capital Project, there are many reasons to be excited about new developments in our building over the next several years. These are POSITIVE changes that will continue to move us forward in the areas of instruction and learning, and they impact both students AND teachers. Ms. Orr will be presenting on the work that the District Technology Planning Committee has been tackling since the spring of last year, and I'm sure you'll be interested in what they have to say. More to come!

Have a great week!

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Calendar (AKA Where Will Tim Be This Week?)

Tuesday, Jan 12th:

  • Planned Parenthood Presentations, 8th grade Social Studies classes
  • Admin Cabinet Meeting, HS LGI, 9:45 AM - 11:45 AM

Wednesday, Jan 13th:

  • Planned Parenthood Presentations, 8th grade Social Studies classes
  • Restorative Justice in K-12 Schools Overview, MS LGI, 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Thursday, Jan 14th:

  • Restorative Justice in K-12 Schools Facilitator Training, MS LGI, 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
  • BLT Meeting, 2:15 PM, Room 102
  • 8th to 9th Grade Parent Transition Night, HS Auditorium, 6:30 PM

Other Important Upcoming Dates:

1/19- BOE Meeting hosted at OWWMS, Presentation: "The Middle School MakerSpace: Student-driven Creating in the Library"

1/20- Joint MS/HS ITL Meeting

1/20- Parent University #3 @ Harrison ES

1/25- Marking Period 2 SchoolTool Unlock for Teachers

1/27- 8th Grade Transition Day @ the HS, 8:30 - 11:30 AM

**If you're looking for me, don't forget to check the big calendar hanging on the wall outside of my office. This is the best I can do until someone forcibly implants a GPS device in my forearm.

Weekly Tech Tip

Something new I'd like to try in 2016 is offering small, accessible tech tips in the Monday Message that can be inserted into daily instruction quickly and easily. Thanks to Jerilyn Hogan for offering a great one to start us out:

  • Check out this Screencastify video tutorial on using the Google Docs Add-on called Revision Assistant. This tool streamlines the job of revising student work right in a shared Google Doc. As Jerilyn says in her video, "This is great for people who are using Google Classroom and are looking for more ways to interact with their students."

What should assessment look like in the 21st Century?

It is worth your time to set aside eight minutes this week to watch this Edutopia video about the power of assessment and its tie-in to standards-based grading and project-based learning. I especially liked one high school sophomore who summed up why it's so important to help students make clear connections between what you're teaching and an end goal for them: "I want, like, a goal in my head, about what to do with the information that I get. So if they're going to teach me how to do a one-page equation, I want to know what can I do with that."
Five Keys to Comprehensive Assessment

#OneNewThing (Yep, It's still here!)

What better way to ring in the New Year and shake off the dust of 2015 than by trying #ONENEWTHING in your classroom? I'd love to hear your stories as you try out these suggestions or other tools you may have found. We all learn from each other!

Thanks for sharing your #OneNewThing! Click here to share something on the #OneNewThing Google Form

New Things We Have Tried This Year: Pear Deck, Google Classroom, Kahoot, Poll Everywhere, TodaysMeet, Piktochart, Smore, Storybird

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