Sunday, February 26, 2017

February March Newsletter

NATIONAL ASSESSMENT OF EDUCATIONAL PROGRESS (NAEP) Our 4th and 8th grade students participated in the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) in reading and mathematics again this year on February 22, for grade 4 and on February 23 for grade 8. Our school has been randomly selected to represent Vermont for several years. The assessment is given every other year. It takes approximately 90 minutes to administer. This is the first year when approximately 75% of the children took the test electronically on a tablet, while the remaining 25% took the traditional paper and pencil version. This will give the people who prepare the NAEP test important information so they can compare results on the two versions of the exam. NAEP sends trained staff to proctor the exams in the children’s classrooms. While we do receive state-wide results from this assessment, we do not receive any school or student specific results.

ENRICHING EDUCATION FOR ALL We want to share with you our observations that we see so many wonderful, enriching activities taking place in the school. In our regular classrooms we see challenging math, literacy, science, and social study lessons taking place. Children who need additional support are receiving that assistance from our special education and intervention staff members. In our special classes students have the opportunity to explore the arts, music, a foreign language, technical education, family and consumer science, the resources in the library and computer lab, and develop wellness habits in physical education that should serve them well throughout their lives. We also see your children arriving here every day full of energy and curiosity. What an exciting place this is!

COUNSELOR LUNCH GROUPS From time to time, our school counselors have time in their schedules to meet over lunch with groups of 3-4 students who have expressed a desire to do this. These lunch groups are not counseling sessions. They simply offer interested children a chance to eat lunch in a small group setting and share general conversation together. Topics of a personal or confidential nature are not permitted to be discussed during these times. If you do not want your child to participate in these lunch groups or have any questions about them, please either send a note to school expressing your feelings or call any of our school counselors, Mrs. Joanne Campisi, Mr, Alex Wawrzyniak, or Ms. Sandra Cormier. Thank you.

“GIRLS ON THE RUN” “Girls on the Run” is a national experiential learning program for girls in grades 3-5. Although its apparent goal is completion of a noncompetitive 5k walk/run to be held in Burlington, VT, in May, “Girls on the Run” is as much about good health, friendship, positive body image, and self esteem as it is about running. Through its focus on positive emotional, social, mental and physical development, since 1996, “Girls on the Run” has helped more than 30,000 girls gain a strong sense of self as they enter adolescence. Chris Farnham, one of our math teachers, and Amelia Abraham, one of our third grade teachers, will be acting as the head coaches for this group. Both Chris and Amelia are very excited about getting young girls to appreciate the joy as well as the many benefits of running!

CELL PHONE REMINDER  Please remember that all middle school students who may have a cell phone should be sure the phone is off and out of sight during the school day. Thank you for your understanding and support with this!

FEB 27-MAR. 6 FEBRUARY VACATION...NO SCHOOL FOR CHILDREN
MAR. 7 TOWN MEETING DAY (NO SCHOOL) - VOTING ON SCHOOL AND MUNICIPAL BUDGET TO TAKE PLACE AT BARRE MUNICIPAL AUD. 7:00 AM.-7:00 P.M.

MAR. 8 WEDNESDAY...SCHOOL RESUMES

MAR. 13 SCHOOL BOARD MEETING LIBRARY 5:30 P.M.

MAR. 14 8 TH GRADE PARENT INFORMATION NIGHT AT SPAULDING HIGH 5:30 P.M.

MAR. 14 PTO MEETING SCHOOL LIBRARY 6:30 P.M.

MAR.16 8TH GRADE PARENT INFORMATION NIGHT WITH SPAULDING HIGH SCHOOL ADMINISTRATION SHS AUDITORIUM 5:30 -7:00

MAR. 23 & 24th 9 TH GRADE REGISTRATION FOR ALL CURRENT 8TH GRADE STUDENTS BCEMS IN OUR LIBRARY FROM 8:00-2:00 ON BOTH DAYS

MAR. 27-30 SBAC EXAM IN ENGLISH/LANGUAGE ARTS -GRADES 5 & 7 & 8 (UJAMAA)

MAR. 30 PARENT/TEACHER CONFERENCES; STUDENTS RELEASED EARLY GRADES 5-8 DISMISSED AFTER LUNCH AT 11:00

MAR. 31 STAFF DEVELOPMENT DAY…NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS

Tuesday, February 7, 2017


This past month has certainly been a busy one! I think that my biggest take away was the multiple opportunities for professional growth and reflection that we participated in. I truly believe that we are better able to engage our students when we continue to learn ourselves.


“As goes the signal, so goes the class.” Thank you to all teachers who opened their classrooms for observation during Roxanne Hable’s visit. Roxanne travels all over the country doing Developmental Designs coaching and consultation. She is genuinely impressed with the work that we have done implementing DD with fidelity in our school. Since implementing the Developmental Design framework strategy called TAB, our referrals to the planning room have dropped 30 %. When I think of implementation, I think of a feedback loop, and how important it is to try things, get feedback, measure, apply what we learn and continue to move forward. In fact, we can apply the thinking of a feedback loop to so many things.


Here are a few of the things that our colleagues who recently attended the Lake Morey Growth Mindset conference shared with me. I think there are some powerful ideas in their thoughts.
~Teaching students how to learn is just as important as imparting knowledge.  Communicating why we are doing things is essential. Mindset + Skill-set (x Relevance) = Results. We need to ensure our students understand the physiology of the brain and how it works (meta-cognition process). Growth mindset and study skills instruction is powerful. It is important to recognize when we as adults are experiencing a fixed mindset and use that experience as an opportunity for our own growth. ~ This is so true! We are all learning all the time!





For the classroom
A strategy for modeling meta-cognition in the classroom


For Inspiration
Our Time   The video that was shown at the Up For Learning Workshop last Friday.

On February 1st our Penguin Plunge Middle School team jumped into the icy waters of Lake Champlain. 15 students raised over $4,300 for Special Olympics Vermont of which the BCEMS Unified Sports Program will receive approximately $500. Our students conducted themselves with honor and respect, and we are very proud of their efforts!
Looking ahead
We will give the YRBS on 2/15 and there is a 5 /6 dance on Friday the 10th and a 7 / 8 dance on Friday the 17th. Pennies for Patients continues Feb. 13-16.

Bob Goudreau will be back briefly this week to check in. He is still available as we need him to be, and I am certainly grateful for that. I have heard from so many of you that in my absence his presence was calm and reassuring. We will be seeing less of him, but he is leaving us with fond memories and nothing but gratitude for his service. Thank you Bob!