Parkdale Elementary Weekly Update


This Week...

What a beautiful weekend! I hope everyone enjoyed some rest and had a chance to soak in some rays.

I'm looking forward to a fun week with En Taiko here with our 2/3 classes and then the play on Friday. Remember, we won't have specials on Friday due to the play. Also, all of our lunches will be a bit later that day.

Have a great week,


RTI Schedule for Thursday

We will have time in our agenda on Thursday for discussion of RTI for reading, math, and behavior.

Here is an updated schedule for our RTI day. I'm hoping this one preserves everyone's prep and lunch period. Please let me know if you see a conflict...

8:00-9:00 1st (Valentine, Spaulding)

9:00-10:00 Kinder (Welland, Heigert)

10:00 - 11:00 4/5th (Ziegner, Curtis, Lavoie)

11:00- 11:30 Lunch

12:00-1:00 2nd (Sischo, Backner)

1:00-2:00 3rd (Monroe, Schmidt)

School Board Meeting on Wednesday

The School Board meeting will be held at Parkdale this Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the library. I'm planning to highlight the success of our Oregon Battle of the Books participants. The students and their families have been invited to join. You are not expected to attend the meeting but I would be happy to introduce you if you decide to go.

Shrek, The Musical

Friday, April 24th, 8:30-11am

Wy'east Middle School

We will board the busses as soon as they arrive (likely 8:30). Please be ready (bathroom break taken care of) to board by 8:20.

The play will begin when we arrive and last about 2 hours. There will be a short break in the middle for a stretch break but no intermission.

How our kids deal with trauma and stress...

Please check out the article below. It was a good reminder for me about how our students might respond to trauma that they have or are experiencing in their lives. It is a good reminder that "students will do well if they can". If a students in not behaving well or not achieving in school, it is likely that there is some barrier for them. We then ask ourselves, how can we help provide support to overcome that barrier?

Creating a “Trauma-Sensitive” Learning Environment for Students...An article from the Marshal Memo

Creating a “Trauma-Sensitive” Learning Environment for Students

In this article in Principal, Pete Hall and Kristin Souers say that many students walk into school feeling the effects of trauma. This can affect their own ability to learn, the climate of their classrooms, and the orderliness of the whole school. Trauma, in the words of Daniel Siegel of the UCLA School of Medicine, is “an experience that overwhelms our ability to cope” – perhaps including the death of a loved one, mental illness in the home, witnessing a crime, parental fighting or divorce, an incarcerated family member, homelessness, bullying.

“When children lose the ability to cope with the traumatic events in their lives,” say Hall and Souers, “they seek ways to regulate. They access whatever resources they have – healthy or unhealthy – to manage the intensity associated with the stress of these events.” Their school work and behavior often suffer. One study found that traumatized children are three times more likely to fail academically, five times more likely to have problems with attendance, and six times more likely to have behavior problems than peers who haven’t experienced trauma.

“We can’t always know what students have experienced, or even all the details about it,” continue Hall and Souers, who worked together in an elementary school in Spokane, Washington where half the students had a trauma history. “Neither can we erase traumatic experiences from students’ memories or stop trauma from happening again. But we can work diligently to create an atmosphere that is inviting, welcoming, peaceful, and safe for all our students” – one that is “trauma-sensitive.” Hall, who was principal of the school, brought in Souers, a local mental health therapist, to work with teachers, custodians, and other staff on understanding and supporting needy students. “Souers’s lessons,” they write, “centered on the one element of the equation that educators and school personnel can control: ourselves.” Here is what they worked on:

Understanding motives – When students who have experienced trauma feel threatened, unsafe, or ill-at-ease, they often react by fleeing, fighting, or freezing. In the past, these actions often resulted in students being scolded or punished, but adults in the school began to see what was behind the actions, understood them as “normal reactions to not OK things,” and became more strategic in planning how to react when there were problems.

Building positive relationships – Staff members were prompted to reach out to students, especially those with the most challenges, and get to know them better.

Reacting strategically – Teachers and other staff worked on remaining calm, consistent, and caring in the face of provocative behaviors. Traumatized children sometimes create chaos – screaming, cursing, throwing papers, upending desks, tantruming, tormenting others. “Just because a child has chosen a disruptive regulation strategy doesn’t mean we need to hop on board,” say Hall and Souers. “Educators should ask: What problem is this child attempting to solve?” Was there a trigger? “The key is to avoid reacting to these infringements with frustration, anger, or irritability because a trusted adult’s response to off-kilter behaviors can either escalate or mitigate the surrounding environment… When we analyze the motivation, we can empathize with the student’s plight, talk the student down off the proverbial ledge, offer alternative strategies for self-regulation, and maintain order in the classroom… Our calmness serves as a model to students of how to self-regulate, reducing the need to remove students from our classrooms.” The teachers in Hall’s school adopted the mantra, Stay out of Oz, meaning don’t get swept away by the tornado.

Keeping your footing – Educators have numerous demands and stresses themselves, say Hall and Souers, and it’s easy to slip. They advocate using affirmations of core values and professional purpose and aspirations – I believe… I love… I will always… I can… – to stay rooted in the most effective posture and strategies for helping all children thrive.

“Address Trauma with Calm, Consistent Care” by Pete Hall and Kristin Souers in Principal, March/April 2015 (Vol. 94, #4, p. 14-17),

Parkdale Staff Feedback Form - Click Here!

Use this form to give Gus feedback about how things are going and what you need.

Events This Week...

Monday 4/20

2/3 ART WEEK – All Week - En Taiko

7:15 a.m. – IA’s/Terry/Heidi – Meeting- Computer Lab


Tuesday 4/21

Gus, Rhonda, Mara at RTI Conference

4/5 Testing

2:15 – 3:00 p.m. – Gr. 5 - Ukulele – (Tickner)


Wednesday 4/22

Gus, Rhonda, Mara at RTI Conference

4/5 Testing

2:15 – 3:00 p.m. – Gr. 4 & 5 - Beg. Ukulele



Thursday 4/23


4/5 Testing



Friday 4/24

8:30 a.m. Leave for Wy’east - Play 9:00-11:00 a.m. (Shrek The Musical) Return 11:30 a.m.

Upcoming Dates

· 4/27 12:45 p.m. – Wy’east Band/Choir (35 minutes)

· 4/28 7:00 a.m. Safety Meeting

· 4/28 4/5 Testing

· 4/28 2:15–3:15 Wy’east transition - Wy’east Staff to visit PES

· 4/5 Testing

· 4/29 2:20 p.m. Teacher Meeting

· 4/30 10:30–3:00 Transition Meeting for Early Invention Student(Welland/Heigert)

· 4/30 7:00 p.m. SPRING MUSIC PROGRAM – ‘COWBOY”


Have a great week!!

Parkdale Staff Feedback Form - Click Here!

Use this form to give Gus feedback about how things are going and what you need.