Sexton Mountain Elementary

February 2020

Principal's Note

Perseverance is the character trait of the month. We are talking to students about the reward of sticking with difficult things. New learning can be hard and frustrating at first, but the payoff is worth it. We are using the growth mindset of "not yet" to help students develop perseverance. It is important to remind students everyone is on their own unique learning journey.

I have been in classrooms watching students tackle complicated math problems. I love the language I'm hearing. They are using high level vocabulary to discuss the strategies they are using to work on math problems.

Next week is the parking lot and safe routes to school audit. Please consider participating. Your input is an important piece in this process. Also check out the Parent Night the district is holding on February 12th at Springville K-8 with Dr. Mary Ehrenworth. She is a reading expert from Columbia University. I have heard her speak multiple times and always walk away with new ideas.

What you do at Night, on the Weekends, and on Vacation Can Make a World of Difference to Your Child's Academic Success: Practical Advice for Families from a Leading Literacy Expert Grades K-8

Dear Beaverton Parents and Community Members,

Join Dr. Mary Ehrenworth on Wednesday, February 12th at Springville K-8 to find out how parents can make a tremendous difference in their children's academic success, now, and as they mature. You'll learn about what you can do to help your children become more powerful readers, which helps them be more powerful students in every class. You'll find out more about what kinds of 'work' outside of school make a tremendous difference. You'll learn about different kinds of reading aloud and reading experiences that can add to your children's language acquisition and knowledge. And you'll learn about use of time, including the kinds of commitments, trips and family projects that can help students do better not only with reading but in science and social studies.

Dr. Ehrenworth is Senior Deputy Director of the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project, a global literacy think tank at Columbia University. She has been an admissions officer at an Ivy League university. Dr. Ehrenworth is the author of dozens of books, including ​The Power of Grammar​ and the best-selling Pathways to the Common Core, a​ nd most recently, ​Essential Research Skills for Teens, Critical Literacy, ​and, forthcoming, ​The Civically-Engaged Classroom: Teaching in Times of Strife and Discord. ​Among her more recent articles in Educational Leadership​ are: ​Revisiting Reading Workshop: Autonomy, Liberation, and Love; Growing Extraordinary Writers; Why Argue? ​and Unlocking the Secrets of Complex Texts​. She is also a parent of two children who are widely diverse learners.

Dr. Ehrenworth will be speaking at ​Springville K-8​, starting at 6:30. There will be light refreshments and time to answer questions at the end. If you are interested in attending, ​please register here​.

If you have any questions, please call Susan Ouellette at 503-356-4431.

Success Coach News by Autumn McConnell

Social-Emotional Development is something that is learned over time with experiences.

It begins the moment our children open their eyes and continues throughout life.

When we take a closer look at the orange pieces of the CASEL wheel, we see Self-Awareness and Self-Management defined as:

Self-Awareness: The ability to accurately recognize one’s own emotions, thoughts, and values and how they influence behavior. The ability to accurately assess one’s strengths and limitations, with a well-grounded sense of confidence, optimism, and a “growth mindset.”

Self-Management: The ability to successfully regulate one’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in different situations — effectively managing stress, controlling impulses, and motivating oneself. The ability to set and work toward personal and academic goals."

(quoted from

One way we are learning to regulate our emotions is by being able to identify what our feelings are and make a plan.

If your child is having an unexpected emotion, you can ask them, "what zone are you in?" They can tell you or point to the color. By helping them identify their emotions, we are in turn able to help them start developing strategies to get "back to the green zone" or optimal/"good to go" zone.

If a child is having a really big emotion, sometimes it is better to wait until they are calmer to reflect on what happened, how they felt (what zone) and what they can do next time when they start to enter the red or blue zone.

Some examples could be to take a walk, have some space, draw, read, get a hug, not talk until they say they are ready, hear affirmations, listen to music, have a snack, drink some water, etc.

If we work on these strategies not only at school but also at home, we can increase the likelihood that students can develop their ability to self-regulate and manage their emotions. This helps build their self-awareness and self-management skills.

Big picture

If you are interested in getting a copy of the zones of regulation. Please contact Please include your child's name, grade, and teacher. This will help make sure it gets to the correct backpack!

Yearly Asbestos Notice

January 30, 2020 In 1986, Congress passed the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA). This law required all K-12 schools to be inspected for asbestos-containing building materials (ACBM). These inspections were completed and the plan for all ACBM management was filed with the State of Oregon’s Department of Education on October 11, 1988. A copy of this management plan for each school is on file in the main office of each respective school and in the Archive Room at the District’s Maintenance Services Department. Based on this inventory and our construction management records since the inventory was completed, the following schools are considered to be asbestos-free. All other schools contain some asbestos-containing building materials.

Elementary Schools: Aloha-Huber Park, Jacob Wismer, Nancy Ryles, Sato, Scholls Heights, Sexton Mountain, Springville K-8, Vose, Bonny Slope, Findley, Hazeldale

Middle Schools: Stoller, Conestoga

High Schools: Mountainside, Merlo Station, Southridge, Westview

During the 2019 calendar year, PBS Engineering and Environmental, a private consulting firm, in accordance with Federal Regulations under AHERA, re-inspected all schools twice (June and December). The results of these inspections are filed in each school’s management plan.

University of Portland Reading Fair and STEM day!

The University of Portland annual Reading Fair and Family STEM Day is on Sunday, February 23rd, from 11:00am – 3:00pm at the Chiles Center! This FREE event is an opportunity for families and children to come spend an afternoon together and share their love of reading and STEM. Children of all ages are welcome to participate in fun hands-on activities, games, educational booths, and crafts. Every child, from infant to high school, will get to take home a FREE book of their choice from our wide selection!

February Calendar

February 17- President's Day-No school

February 18- Staff Development-No School

February 21-Talent Show -6:30 pm

February 25-PTC meeting-3:15 Library

February 27-Third and Fourth Grade Music Program-6:00 pm