Principal Update

November 22nd, 2016

Message from Dr. K & Mrs. Rich

BSE Staff,

There are not words to describe you. When we try...we end up saying "you just have to come watch these adults interact with children." We are thankful to work side by side all of you each day. We are humbled to be able to lead you because it's more often than not that you are actually leading us. Thank you for all you do and we encourage the same philosophy described in Phil Lederach's blog regarding "pausing, reflecting and giving thanks." Unplug for a few days and just be....be with those you love. They are the ones that deserve all you have to give. Have a warm few days off and we will be ready on Monday to charge forward. We are thankful at BSE and thankful for you.

Kids Deserve It - #MakeThatPhoneCall

Today we pack up for a short break with our family and friends and will return for only 3 weeks before the first semester has ended. The time is literally flying by and before we know it we will run through our mid-year data reviews. As you relax and reflect the next few days ponder the next Kids Deserve It message. This chapter is simply titled, Make That Phone Call!


Authors Nesloney and Welcome tell a story of the power of the traditional format of communication, a phone call. Their story inspires a chain of events that were all framed the positive notice of one person. One adult noticed something positive, made a call, and the next thing you know a variety of students, staff, and principals found themselves being contacted about something they had done that was positive. A few suggestions from Kids Deserve It.



  • We catch kids and one another doing something great every day. Take the time to share that positive news!
  • Taking time out of your schedule to make a simple phone call can make a world of difference!
  • You can't call home too often! You teachers are expected to do a great deal and at times the list of tasks can seem unending. But the one thing we never take of that list is the phone call to parents about something positive. There's such power in taking a minute to tell someone you noticed them!

Join me on Twitter: #KidsDeserveIt

1. When was the last time you called a parent at home to celebrate his or her child? What happened?

2. Have you found time to celebrate every child? They all deserve a phone call home! Find one thing special about all of them and celebrate it!

Welcome Patti Warren - Perm Sub BSE

BA from UPUI (honors).

Substitute teacher for HSE

10 years as a victim advocate at Prevail and a program coordinator at Chaucie's Place.

NWEA Window Update

Teachers,

Remember to plan ahead for reading and math assessments for NWEA within your schedules on separate days. Use your judgement on determining when students needs breaks. A brain break in the middle of the test is acceptable if that is what kids need.


We are encouraging teachers to communicate to parents to have the NWEA App downloaded now over break in order to ready to test Monday.

The window for testing is Nov 28-Dec 14 including makeups.


  • Remind parents that nutrition and sleep is crucial and to be encouraging to lessen anxiety for testing.
  • Students with 504s: coordinate with Thorne immediately
  • Students with IEPs: coordinate with Casey or Sara immediately
  • Need assistance? Email Fatima to set up lab sign up or have another adult in your classroom at the time of testing.

Brrrrr...it's cold outside!

Teachers,

It is that time of year when the weather has shifted to temperatures that require coats, hats, and gloves.

  • Please remind parents to send appropriate winter gear for outdoor play.
  • Before heading to lunch ask students, "Do you have what you need for both lunch and recess to be prepared for cold weather?"
In the event that a child leaves a coat inside, we will allow them to return to the building to get their coat and be warm. The logical consequence: "Bummer...I have to go in and get my coat." If you are not comfortable sending a student in unsupervised, please radio for an escort. If a child does not have a coat, check Lost and Found or Nurse's station.

United Way - Thank You!

Brooks School Elementary raised $1,856.00 (4th overall) and had 70% participation (2nd place overall).


I sincerely appreciate the BSE staff for stepping up with participation in the United Way this year. Our target goal was 80% participation and we nearly got there! Jeans for all participants through the next United Way Campaign.


Did you miss your opportunity for jeans? Spread the word that any staff member who missed can make a $10 donation to the BSE Social Butterfly Crew and earn jeans through the end of the year. Jenni Robinson (2nd grade is your contact).

PBIS update - A note From Mrs. Thorne

The PBIS committee has met twice so far this year, and each meeting has left me questioning and full of thought. I love hearing from teachers about what their day to day experiences are like as I try to assist where I can. What I want you all to know is that I see the hard work you are putting in and I respect how incredibly difficult your job is. Continue to build those classroom communities as you find ways to connect with your students. Relationships, especially with tough kiddos, are SO important!


Here are a few key things we are working on implementing in PBIS as we move in a direction of logical consequences in place of punishments that have been found to be ineffective.


Calming Corners- check out this article!

http://www.teachinginprogress.com/2016/07/how-to-set-up-introduce-implement-take.html


Buddy Rooms- I believe most of you have talked in PLCs about having a buddy room where a student can go to take a break if your classroom is not what they need at that moment. If you have questions about this, see me or your PBIS committee member. It takes a villiage…


Reflections- After a student has made a bad choice and had a logical consequence, it is important to give that student a chance to reflect. We are working on revamping the Think Sheets to be a way to make this happen more effectively….stay tuned!

Good for You & Great for Students

It's always a great time of year (after a natural break) to revisit the norms that we set up in the fall.

  1. How does it feel when you walk into our classroom half way through the year?
  2. Do any of our agreements (rules) need adjustments?
  3. What are our beliefs about how we want our classroom to feel?
  4. What is the teacher's role? What is the student's role?
  5. What does great learning look like and sound like? In the hallway? Specials?

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Creating Good Choices - Reminders from Mike Anderson

Create Good Choices....Facilitate Student Choice: Choose, Do, Review....Professional Reflection. (Cycle)


An example from a classroom:


Christine stands in front of the class, her eyes beaming with pride. Students in my 4th grade class have spent the last week creating projects to share wha they have learned about the solar system. Christine has studied the sun. She has collected many interesting facts, organized them into categories, and worked hard on her project, and she is excited to share it with the class. I have been impressed with her efforts, for Christine is a student who sometimes struggles with the following through on a plan and often doesn't put a lot of energy into schoolwork. This project, however is different. She has been so enthusiastic about the idea of painting a giant sun costume ad has poured so much time and effort into her work, meticulously constructing a sun and then painting every square inch of it in various shades of yellow and orange, that neither of us has considered whether or not a giant sun costume is a good choice for her content.


Christine's presentation falls flat. She is justifiably proud of her sun costume, but she doesn't have much to say. She stammers through an explanation of her costume and how hard she worked on it, looks nervously down at her notes and shares some of the facts she has learned, takes a few questions from her classmates and sits back down.


Remember that choices are a means to an end and poor choices can discourage learners, waste time, and dampen enthusiasm for learning. There are times that choices are NOT a good fit. Christine's project and development of a great costume did nothing to reinforce or help share content she was supposed to have learned.


CHOICES SHOULD MATCH LEARNING GOALS AND ENSURE THAT THEY ENHANCE THE ENGAGEMENT THAT LEAD TO SUBJECT KNOWLEDGE.


Take a look at your past project...how did your choices impact the final learning outcomes?

Science Lab - Has been Restocked!

Teachers are readers

The basket of magazines in the staff lounge is for everyone.

Please take to keep! or enjoy during your lunch!

403B Staff Meeting

Monday, Nov. 28th, 4pm

BSE Library

HSE has changed vendors for 403B, this is your opportunity to learn about your new options etc.

We have so much more than we know...be thankful friends. Watch Below. Thank you Jen for sharing.

Dyan comes home