Thursday, January 21, 2016

“PAWS” for Thought

Winter has finally arrived and while things outside are cold, inside OQS student's brains are heating up! As I wander through the classrooms I see students in deep discussion about the industrial revolution, students creating presentations on diversity, students researching countries of their choice, students making claims and supporting them with evidence and reasoning, students practicing letter sounds using our new phonics program, and students persevering outside in the outdoor classroom building structures, problem solving and facing the challenges of snow and ice.
January is assessment month at all three elementary schools. Teachers meet with each student individually to conduct interview style reading (Fountas and Pinnell Reading-F&P) and math (Primary Number and Operations- PNOA) assessments gaining great insight into each child’s progress in these areas to help inform teaching strategies and individualize instruction.
Put on your bowling shoes because Kaleigh Rhoades, our PE teacher wrote and received a bowling grant in which we will soon receive everything needed to set up lanes and pins in the gym so that students can learn the game of bowling! We also received a grant from Dartmouth’s Healthiest Youth and Community Mini-Grant Program which will allow us to purchase updated curriculum designed to help students in grades K-5 continue developing their social-emotional skills to set them on the path for social success and academic readiness.
Recently teachers participated in a thought provoking in-service that focussed on closing the achievement gap by growing student’s vocabulary and knowledge. David Liben is working with our literacy teacher leader, Madeline Carlock, to assist teachers in using text sets and read alouds specifically designed to improve vocabulary and grow knowledge. You can watch the presentation we watched by going to the following link: https://vimeo.com/132681353
Ross McGee, our math interventionist and math teacher leader is working with the PTO to host our first community math night on February 25th. Students, parents, administrators, teachers, and community members including members of the police station, fire department, select board and superintendent's office will gather in the gym to learn math through the power of play. Please put the date on your calendar and invite family and friends to join us!

Upcoming events include a Science presentation at the March PTO meeting and classroom visits by Ben the therapy dog!

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