NMS Faculty Bulletin 10-2-2012

Character is created by encountering and overcoming failure.
Paul Tough

I hope everyone had a marvelous weekend!  This bulletin is a little late, so sorry!  We do have a faculty meeting Wednesday morning – Angela is going to show us some methods to gather formative assessment using the Active Votes and Expressions.  

As we observe in classrooms we are listening for the AIM to be shared with the class at the beginning and at the end of the lesson – close the learning loop with the students.  Make sure you know who learned the AIM for that day and who didn’t.  Exit tickets, votes, expressions, and polls are all ways to do that.  

Remember – classroom goals need to be up in the classrooms!

I have really enjoyed my 03’s these last two weeks.  I have received great information on student achievement.  I am hearing about how many kids passed Unit tests, how many are having to retake, and how the retakes are affecting the percentage of students passing.  I believe that the teachers I am meeting with really have a good understanding of where their students are in the learning process and who needs to be retaught.  The AP’s are hearing the same thing – I can tell that teachers are adopting the attitude of, “Whatever It Takes” and our students are learning more because of this!  Shout outs to you all!!  

ICU – We are constantly trying to make ICU better and more effective, so that students are using their time, and getting their work complete for their teachers.  We tried something new today.  We had each student come down to the table where we were sitting, one at a time.  They had to bring all of their homework, all of their missing work, and their agenda.  We did an agenda check to see who is writing their work in their agendas, and how many of the students had homework in all 4 core teacher’s classes.  Many of the students did not have homework in all of the 4 cores.  We heard from some students that they did their homework in their classrooms.  It is important that students have the work to take home, on top of the work they do as practice in the classrooms.  They need MORE practice!  Then, we told the students to get to their seats, and get busy.  At 4:30 – those students who had completed all of their work – got to leave.  That was exactly 1 student.  But, the other students certainly had a mind shift about what they were currently doing.  We are going to try this for a couple of days and see if it works.  The purpose of ICU is to get work completed – that is what we want to happen.  I hope this will be a motivator for students to complete work, show it to us, and then be able to leave at 4:30 – if work is not done at 4:30 – they stay until 5:30.    We will keep trying until we get it right.  One more note of interest – it was interesting to see how many students have not written in their agenda since the first week of school!  Their parents are signing a blank page?????

Kickboard – we have had a soft start to Kickboard – beginning on Monday!  We are just getting started and there are going to be kinks!  That is what happens at the start of anything new!  We will get into a rhythm with it and get it working just the way we want it to, but it will take time!  One important thing to remember – we must watch students and reward their behavior as well as take away for negative behavior.  We can’t be only focused on the negative!  We will start the incentives soon – hopefully next week – so the students can see it is going to be worth their time to do their best each day!!  Earning Knight Dollars is just as important as losing them!  

Here is the calendar for the week:

Wednesday, October 3, 2012
7:50 Faculty Meeting
10:30 Steve @ Testing Coordinator meeting
12:00 Leah & Jan @ 504 meeting
3:30 Band meets in cafeteria for Bandstravaganza
3:30 ELA planning B117
3:30 Science Tutorials

Thursday, October 4, 2012
9:00 Group Observations – The leadership team will be walking around doing short 15 minutes walk throughs in classrooms.  This is for us to get on the same page!  You will get written feedback but it is NOT SBPDAS.  This is for us to learn and grow.
1:00 AP Meeting
3:30 ELA Tutorials
3:30 Science Planning B117
4:30 ELA Curriculum Mtg.
5:30 Val @ Meeting

Friday, October 5, 2012
8:00 Grade book training for New teachers – TBA
9:00 Kid Team Meeting
2:00 NMS & Yes Prep Front Office Staff Meeting – conference room

Have a great rest of the week!  

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