Monclova Primary

Weekly Bulletin

Events for Week of September 23 - September 29


Monday, September 23

"Start with Hello" Day - where name tags

Section 125 Meetings - see shared schedule

Tuesday, September 24

"Find someone who......." Day

Section 125 Meetings - see shared schedule

Character Wheel - 9:00 am

Wednesday, September 25

"Connect with your class" Day

2 hour delay for Professional Development - 8:15 am - 10:00 am

Thursday, September 26

"Mix it up at lunch" Day

Scenario/Drill - 2:00 pm

Friday, September 27

"Choose someone new to play with at recess" Day

Movie Night - 7:00 to 9:00 pm


Thank you:

Staff that took time from their evening to attend the MAPS meeting

Chris for arranging a fun Super U program for our students and families!


First Energy grant information was shared this week. Let me know if you will be applying and need assistance.

Make sure you have signed up for your Section 125 meeting. The sign up is on ONLINE, ONLY. Links were shared a couple weeks ago.

September 25 will be the districtwide 2 hour delay for professional development. The agenda will be shared out very soon. The hours will be 8:15 am to 10:00 am. Please continue to communicate this to your classroom families.

Kroger will be giving flu shots on October 2 from 7:30 am to 9:00 am in the conference room. Fay will send out the consent form, bring the completed form and your insurance card when you stop in for your shot.

Homecoming week is the week of September 30, Monclova will be walking in the parade on Friday, October 4. Line up begins at 4:30 in the north parking lot(athletic entrance) with the parade starting at 5:00 pm. Feel free to join the parade, bring a bag of candy to pass out, if you would like. The kids love walking with staff, students and family! Please share this information with your families through classroom communications.

Words of Wisdom and Action..............................

We focus a great deal on our literacy instruction and ways to improve, here is information about brain research and literacy instruction.

Reading Strategies That Work, According to Science

Get their brains to light up. Literally.

Lindsay Barrett on September 16, 2019

Brain research is just plain fascinating. For teachers of reading, brain imaging studies (fMRI) provide windows into what’s actually going on in your students’ heads. There’s the middle schooler who is completely engrossed in a novel. And, there’s the young child with dyslexia who makes gains after intensive intervention. There’s so much brain research out there—and you have no time—so we’ve done the work for you. Here are brain-based reading strategies you can use right now:

1. Ask your students how they feel.

Achieving the optimal state of mind for student learning might take more than just having your class shake their sillies out. Dan Siegel, interpersonal neurology guru, explains how caring relationships and reflection on emotions actually fuel brain growth. Spending a few of your precious instructional minutes at the start of a small group asking, “How’s your day going?” or “How are you feeling about reading today?” can provide a brain boost.

Check out Siegel’s hand model of the brain.

He explains how the parts of the brain responsible for basic survival and emotions can override everything when a human is afraid. Reading can be scary for students, especially struggling readers. Students who experience fear around reading benefit from reassurance. This reassurance is powerful enough to knock their reading power fear level down. Take a minute to reset in situations that might make students anxious. Asking students to “turn on the front of their brains” could help them “unfreeze” learning.

Add a bit of mild pressure.

A little bit of stress can be productive, though. Eric Jensen, author of the now-classic Teaching With the Brain in Mind, reminds teachers that risk, excitement, urgency, and pleasure all release small doses of stress hormones that are beneficial to brain function. After beginning your reading intervention by calming anxieties, dangle an incentive like a comprehension check or vocabulary review using a game like Kahoot to further amp up learning.

2. Find the reading material that makes your students light up.

Pun intended here. Brain-imaging studies show that reading emotionally laden material triggers brain activity. Different emotions activate different brain regions. Try a reading interest inventory to get students’ opinions on how they want books to make them feel. Provide a list of photos of anything from sad puppies to cliff-side mountain biking and ask students to rank them by interest. Talk about the emotions each photo evokes and direct students toward texts that match their preferences.

3. Make new learning stick.

You’ve likely heard the brain’s memory storage described as a filing cabinet or computer. Step away from your desk; a newer analogy is a spider web. Brains literally build physical structures to add new information to their existing networks. Increase the chances of literacy learning earning a permanent spot in your students’ mental webs with frequent revisiting of concepts and multiple modes of input. Brain research agrees that students are more likely to learn a vocabulary word when they see a picture cue, act it out, discuss it with a peer and hear it used in multiple contexts over the course of a week.

This study’s focus was the neural connection–building powers of invented spelling, but it has an important takeaway for teachers of all ages: The analytical, “break it down and build it back up” processes (like mapping sounds to letters) more effectively stimulate lasting brain connections than rote memorization. One area in particular of reading that often still relies on memorization is high frequency word learning. Researchers now suggest teaching students to attack even irregular words by analyzing their sounds left to right.

You already have a wealth of knowledge and instincts about how to move your readers forward. Adding brain-based strategies to your repertoire can help make your teaching as strong and flexible as spider’s silk.