The WAVA Wave

January 1, 2016

A Message from our Principal...

Happy New Year! I hope that you have all enjoyed a restful and happy holiday season with your loved ones! We all need time to rest and recharge the batteries and I was very happy to have some time with my family and friends. Now I am ready to jump into the New Year with both feet and hope you are too!


Something that I have been thinking about recently for both my own children and our WAVA students is how important it is for our kids to be able to interact in the online environment in a safe and meaningful way.


In terms of online safety, I encourage both students and parents to be informed! One site that I really like and encourage both students and parents to visit is:


http://www.netsmartz.org/PARENTS This website has information has videos, games, activity cards, and presentations for all age levels on the topics of internet safety, smart use of cellphones, cyberbullying, and much more!


Once we know our kids are safe online, it is important that they know how to interact with others appropriately. Very often student will use the chat and K-Mail portions of our systems in the same way that they might text a friend. So, something I have asked our teachers to think about and discuss with students is considering context and how they communicate with others. Among the top 20 most popular texting terms that I often see in Class Connect chat and K-mails from students are:


· 2moro - Tomorrow

· 2nite - Tonight

· BRB - Be Right Back

· BTW - By The Way

· B4N - Bye For Now

· BCNU - Be Seeing You

· GR8 - Great

· IMHO - In My Humble Opinion

· J/K - Just Kidding

· L8R - Later


These short-hand terms are fine when texting with friends, but students should understand context and audience when communicating online with others. They should be able to form thoughtful, complete sentences using proper capitalization and punctuation to talk with their teachers and classmates. It is completely understandable that these texting habits have been formed by interacting with friends and I believe it is our adult responsibility to teach them proper usage within context. I would very much appreciate if parents can help us reinforce these ideas with our students!


Tammy Alonzo


Middle School Principal

Washington Virtual Academies

The Counselor Connect

Social Media and Cyberbullying

Online interactions through social media websites (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, etc.) are an important part of the social experience for many students at WAVA. The desire to connect with peers is a normal and healthy part of adolescence, and appropriate use of social media can have numerous positive effects such as increased communication with peers, improved access to information, and the development of a sense of self. However, there is also potential for some very serious issues to arise when students are left unsupervised on social media.


Here is a link to an article with some very helpful suggestions to help parents raise internet-savvy children:


13 Tips for Monitoring Kids’ Social Media

http://www.parenting.com/gallery/social-media-monitoring-kids?page=0


The article is formatted as a slideshow, so click the “next” button on each slide to go through all the different tips.


Additionally, the WAVA Middle School Leadership Club will be hosting an assembly in the next few weeks on the subject of cyberbullying. We will address what it is, how to prevent it, and what to do if students see it happening to themselves or others. Keep an eye on your kmail for further details!


John Bieker
Middle School Guidance Counselor (6-8)
Washington Virtual Academies
Email: jbieker@wava.org
Office: 503-912-4077

Stimpson Family Nature Reserve Hike

Friday, Jan. 15th, 11am

Lake Louise Road

Bellingham, WA

Join the Hiking Club!

Each month, Middle and High School students are invited to hike with teachers Andy Holmes or Drew Naminga.


Click here for more information.

MLK Assembly

Friday, Jan. 15th, 1pm

This is an online event.

Join us for a school-wide celebration of Martin Luther King! Check your OLS schedule to login.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

UW Burke Museum - Earth & Life Science Exhibits

Friday, Jan. 22nd, 10-11:30am

4331 Memorial way

Seattle, WA

Hands-on collections will enrich our earth & life science curriculum with Washington state specific fossils & topics.

Cost is $10.00 per person. Please k-mail Sarah Layton for more information.

Roller Skating at Skagit Skate

Friday, Jan. 29th, 10am-12pm

390 Cedar Street

Burlington, WA

This outing supports the student need for social interaction and physical activity in our virtual setting. Please k-mail April Sorensen for more information.

$6.00 per skater.

(6th and 7th Earth and Life Science Students) Science Engineering Day in Spokane!

Friday, Jan. 29th, 12:30-3:30pm

906 West Main Avenue

Spokane, WA

This STEM activity is part of the required Science Standards for middle school students which gives them an opportunity to participate in hands-on engineering days with their peers. The cost is FREE. Please k-mail Tara Saar for more information.

SAVE THE DATE! Great Wolf Lodge or Triple Play

Monday, Feb. 29th, 9am

20500 Old Highway 99 Southwest

Centralia, WA

We are planning a big end of year semester celebration.
The annual Great Wolf Lodge event will be held in February this year!
We've also added an Eastern Washington event at Triple Play Family Fun Park in Idaho!
More details to come!

Coffee Chats!

Coffee Chats!

This is a chance for WAVA Learning Coaches to connect with other WAVA Learning Coaches to talk about a specific topic for 30 minutes every week. Check your schedule on your Learning Coach account. If you don't see it on your schedule, click on the links below.


Every Thursday!


TOPICS:


January 7th at 1pm: Success Stories

Click here to join.


January 14th at 1pm: Concerns and Priorities with the school

Click here to join.


January 21st at 1pm: Creating an Interest to Learn

Click here to join.


January 28th at 1pm: Consistency

Click here to join.

Washington Virtual Academies Celebrations!

Washington Virtual Academies Celebrations!


We want to recognize the amazing members of our WAVA community!


  • Students & Parents, let us know when a member of our staff has helped you improve, overcome a challenge or gone above and beyond to help you OR share a significant accomplishment.


  • Staff Members - let us know about members of our community who have helped a student/family find success OR share a story about a student/family who has had a significant accomplishment.


Let's Celebrate our wonderful WAVA community!


Follow this link and complete the form to recognize that wonderful person.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/wavacelebrate

Brand new to WAVA?

If you're just starting this month, welcome! Be sure to check your k-mail for a welcome letter from your Family Academic Support Liaison, F.A.S.L. Your F.A.S.L. is there to help you get everything started.

Getting started:
You will receive an email from WAVA detailing the onboarding process. There will be multiple live sessions offered each day, every week, to help guide you through setting everything up.

Week of Welcome, WOW!
Your student's first week will be very busy! It is important to be sure to follow the daily and weekly schedule that week as all sessions are required. Details will also come in an email from WAVA.

Required Class Connects

If you see the word REQUIRED next to the title of the Class Connect, it is a mandatory class that you must attend. If you know you are going to miss a class please contact your teacher to see how you can make up the missed work. Sometimes, you will need to watch a recording.


To view the recording of a missed Class Connect Session, click on the “Go to Class Connect” link, search the date of your missed session, click on the link of the session, watch recording. ALWAYS send your teacher a Kmail to explain why you missed attending the LIVE session (unless previously arranged.)


Time Zone
Make sure your OLS is set to PST (Pacific Standard Time) so your Class Connect times are correct. Click on -> My Account -> Time Zone Settings.

Attendance

Students and Learning Coaches do not need to track attendance. Your attendance is measured by your course progress and participation in required class connect sessions.

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Advanced Learning Circle

For advanced and gifted students:

January 14th

Time: 12:00-1:00pm

http://tinyurl.com/LearningCircles


January 21st (Grades 2-8)

Time: 12:00-1:00pm

http://tinyurl.com/LearningCircles


January 28th (Grades K-8)

Time: 12:00-1:00pm

http://tinyurl.com/LearningCircles

We need parent volunteers!

We have an upcoming social gathering we are putting together for WAVA students this month and need parent volunteers. If you would like more information on how you can help for this event or other events this school year, please fill out this survey.
https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/volunteerWAVA