"Class Guide Keys to Success"
2009-2010 Tukes Valley Middle School Grade 5 Room 271 Mrs. Charbonneau Class Guide: Keys to Success This years Class: Justine Buma Trevor Geiger Katy Montanye Dwayne Steward Rachel Buma Brandon Henifin Ryan RedThunder Heather Tapani Shane Dallum Megan Hess Nolan Ritola Rachel Venturella Zachary DeLano Nicole Kehoe Micah Sena Ty Wisti Peyton Downing Spencer Kraisler Dawson Shoup Hana Wyles Pamela Elise Stefani Levanen Elizabeth Skelton Dillon Zacharias Espiritu Justin Fletcher Arthur Lipe Chris Spencer Your Child’s Teacher: Who is she? Mrs. Charbonneau Dear Families, I just wanted to take moment to tell you about myself. I was born and raised near Spokane, Washington and I graduated from Eastern Washington University. My husband and I moved to the area 2 years ago and we love it here! I previously taught fifth grade at Lewisville Middle School, and last year at Tukes. When I am not at school I love to scrapbook, bake, work in my garden, read, go to church, and fly up to Spokane to see my family. I have been spending my summer making improvements to my new house and taking classes for my Professional Certification. I am so excited to be at Tukes Valley Middle School again. I love being a teacher and dedicate a lot of time to preparing and teaching. I am privileged to have your children in my class and I cherish each child! Teaching Philosophy My philosophy of teaching is to set up every student for success in their life-long journey of learning. I set out to accomplish this through developing their character, self-assessment skills, critical thinking skills, content area skills and knowledge, and explicitly incorporating reading into all curriculum. By applying and practicing these skills, learners become capable of doing. It is my belief that every child can learn and my role as a teacher is to provide learning opportunities. The focus of my classroom is about choices and options that guide students to becoming independent thinkers. I will be challenging your child to extend his/her thinking, go deeper, and ask questions thoughtfully this year. I want students and parents alike to know that fairness is not sameness. I will be differentiating learning based upon individual students and tailoring teaching to the needs of my students. Tukes Valley Campus Expectations It is the expectation of Tukes Valley Middle School that students are Respectful, Responsible, and Safe. Intelligent Classroom Behavioral Expectations Students are expected to: Listen Actively Demonstrate Respect Ask Questions Thoughtfully Practice Self-Discipline Be Trustworthy Strive to Do Their Personal Best Acknowledge Their Limitations Self-Monitoring Behavioral Expectations – The Glance Back Form Each week your child will have a Glance Back Form in his/her notebook. At the end of each day, students will glance back at their learning behaviors for that day and I will briefly check to make sure I agree with their choices. The Glance Back Form is used as a tool to help students reflect on their learning and readiness to learn. Students can graduate from using the form when they prove that they are capable of being self-monitors of their behavior and learning. 2 Glance Back Form I was prepared for learning Y N Y N Y N Y N Y N I followed my work/plan goal Y N Y N Y N Y N Y N I listened attentively during lessons Y N Y N Y N Y N Y N I practiced respectful behaviors Y N Y N Y N Y N Y N I have organized my materials Y N Y N Y N Y N Y N I asked good thoughtful questions today Y N Y N Y N Y N Y N Name __________________________________________ Week ___________________ Take a few minutes to reflect on your behavior and learning today. Complete the chart and check in with Mrs. Charbonneau. Talk-Out Count Goal for this week: Classroom Discipline Procedures If students chose not to practice Tukes Valley Campus Expectations or Classroom Intelligent Behavior Expectations, there are procedures and interventions in place. I reserve the right to help students solve problems on an individual basis, when needs arise, and therefore, do not have a list of consequences for misbehavior. I believe in students learning to solve their problems by working with an adult to generate possible solutions and to implement a solution. I work with students individually to solve the real issues behind classroom disruptions. If behaviors escalate further, I may send home a Phone Conference Request form with your child. I will call that evening after a parent has had the opportunity to discuss with their child the choices made in class and possible behaviors that would work better next time. I want students to take responsibility for their actions and learn to solve problems in a healthy manner. The Tukes Valley Campus has a problem solving form, as well, to aid students in finding appropriate solutions to being safe, respectful and responsible. Weekly Academic Planner Each Monday, as a classroom, we will have a short meeting to discuss the academic week, due dates, and deadlines. There will be a short description of our schedule, a list of reminders, and a list of Must Do’s to complete. I will post the Weekly Academic Planner on my SchoolNotes webpage, instead of printing copies. I encourage you to go over the Weekly Academic Planner with your child each Monday. This will give both of you the opportunity to discuss what assignments need to be completed during the week and to plan the family’s week outside of school. In addition, students will also have an Agenda Book, to purchase at school. Students will use this to keep track of due dates, assignments, and homework. I offer WOW! Ticket punches, a reward, for students who get their agenda book initialed by a parent each night. 3 Homework The research on homework indicates that during middle school, academic performance increases with an increase in homework, up to one hour. In fifth grade, it is generally accepted that students will spend about fifty minutes a night doing homework. In my classroom, I want to give students academic freedom and allow them to plan their week to coordinate with their family’s schedule. I realize that many families have church, sports, scouts, and other extra-curricular activities, as well as family responsibilities. I encourage these activities to develop well-rounded students. I will give four nights worth of homework, in a packet, on Monday. I EXPECT that all students will have their homework completed by Friday. Homework is not a choice, but students have a choice as to when during the week they complete their homework. Each evening there will usually be a math practice sheet. Homework is a practice opportunity for students to review the standards and concepts we are learning in school. Students who complete their homework will have an easier time mastering grade- level standards. We will practice math frequently as homework, but I know that math can be challenging for many students. I encourage students to do their best and get as far on the math practice as they can. We will review the math homework the following day in class and students will have an opportunity to practice skills they may have had difficulty with at home. Homework should never be a cause of frustration! Occasionally, students will have tests to study for or projects to complete. In addition, we will have multiplication and division drill practices on Tuesdays and spelling tests on Friday. Math facts and spelling can be studied for short time periods throughout the week. I encourage students to spend thirty minutes a night reading with a sibling, parent, or independently. In summary, students can complete their homework, on any night, and it is due on Friday. Students can earn WOW! punches by coming to class each day with homework done and for turning it in, completed, on Friday. Grading Fifth grade is the big year for letter grades. Battle Ground School District has a unique system of online grading, called Skyward. Teacher’s grade-books are posted on the internet and students and parents have access to grades at any time. I encourage your family to sign up for Family Access, so you can view your child’s grades online. A password will be given to you in the office that allows you to check your child’s grades at any time throughout the school year. There is a national move towards Standards Based Grading. In Washington State, we have Grade Level Expectations for students to master at each grade level. Mastery implies that students have learned a concept or a skill and can apply the skill or concept to a new situation. This goes beyond learning remote knowledge that is easily forgotten. Standards Based Grading allows students, teachers, and parents to know where a child is at any time and what skills they still need to practice. Students are given the opportunity to make learning meaningful. While Skyward is not yet a Standards Based Grading program, I will be incorporating Standards Based Grading into the grading procedures for this classroom. In each subject fifth graders study, there are grade level expectations or standards. These will be visible and students will know which standard we are learning each day. I encourage your child to discuss with you which standard he/she is learning each day. Assignments will be graded on a 6 point scale that will determine how much of a particular standard your child has mastered. Since Skyward is a percent based grading system, I will attach a percentage score/letter grade to each level of mastery. 4 6 Advanced 96-100% mastery Exceeds the Standard – independent A+ achievements meets and goes beyond grade level standards 5 Mastery 90-95% mastery Meets Standard – independent achievements A consistently meets standards 4 Proficient 80-89% mastery Nearly Meets Standard – some inconsistent B application of skills, but progressing towards meeting standards 3 Basic 70-79% mastery Meeting Some of Standard – very inconsistent C application of skills 2 Below 60-69 % mastery Below Standard – needs continual support on D Basic grade level standards 1 Far Below 59% or below Little Evidence of Standard – Little evidence F Basic mastery of meeting grade level standards The emphasis in my grading system is on what is learned! There will be multiple opportunities to master each standard. For example, one math standard is the long division algorithm. This could be measured on homework, during class work, solving a problem individually for me, on a quiz, or a formal test. The emphasis is on learning the process and applying it, rather than simply on formative tests. Some assignments will measure only one standard, and I will grade the assignment for that particular standard alone. Not all assignments in class will be entered into the grade book, because practice is essential! We will have many assessments for learning, to determine where a student is, before we take an assessment of learning, to determine what the student has learned overall. Students will keep an Achievement Portfolio in class. Under each subject there will be a Standards Mastery Chart for the grade level standards. Students will assess where they are in meeting the standard and place evidence of this in their portfolio. If students have not yet met the standard, each student will individually set a goal and make a plan for meeting the standard. I encourage you to come into the classroom often and review the portfolio with your child. This will tell you exactly where your child is in regards to meeting the standards, what he/she is doing well, and plans he/she has made for improving. These achievement portfolios will be used to guide students in Student-Led-Conferences for the fall and spring. Re-do Assignments, Late Work, Missing Assignments Because students are learning to mastery, I will accept re-do assignments and test retakes so that students have another opportunity to master the standard. If your child earns a 70% or below on any assignment, they can re-do the assignment and I highly encourage this! I will take re-do assignments for up to one week. If students need an opportunity to retake a test, I will give a specific date the retake test needs to be completed. If your child chooses to turn in an assignment late, he/she will need to explain to me on a Late Work Explanation Form, why the assignment is late and when he/she will have it completed. If your child misses important tests or is not completing assignments, I cannot assign a grade. I will not know what standards your child has mastered. This could result in an incomplete instead of a grade. 5 Each Monday, I will give out a Missing Work Report or a slip stating that all assignments were completed. I will accept late assignments until Friday of that same week as I give out the Missing Work Report. For each subject area that students have no missing assignments, they will receive a WOW! punch. Students also receive a WOW! punch for showing a parent the Missing Work Report, having it signed, and returning it to school. WOW! punches can be redeemed for classroom privileges. Quality of Work Standards In the fifth grade, students are given ample opportunities to demonstrate quality in both written and oral assignments. I expect each student to make their first attempt their best attempt. The following are guidelines students need to follow when they are in the process of giving “their best”: Responses should be thoughtful and elaborated with examples All assignments should be in neatly written or typed with grade appropriate mechanics Take your time and fill in all of the lines Double-check or verify your work Respect the work you are going to hand in – papers should be free of crumples and rips Double check that your heading is complete and you have completed all directions Add drawings or diagrams when needed Be creative and make connections! Absences Although some absences are unavoidable, I would ask that you consider when your family schedules planned absences so that learning opportunities are not lost. Upon returning from an absence your child will have a sheet detailing assignments that need to be made up. We will discuss a reasonable time frame for making up missed assignments. Routines and Procedures At the beginning of the school year I will teach classroom routines and procedures. I will post this document on my School Notes webpage for further use. If there are questions about classroom routines or procedures check with the classroom handbook on my School Notes page. If there are still questions, please feel free to call and ask! Parent-Student-Teacher Communication Communication is vital between families and teachers. Please feel free to call or email me at any time. My email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org . My school phone number is 885-6250 ext. 8171 and my home phone is 723-0541. You are welcome to call me at home until 9:00 pm if I cannot be reached at school. We will have fall and spring conferences, but if at any time you feel it would be beneficial to meet for a conference, please do not hesitate to call or send a note. I am happy to meet with parents at any time. As a parent, feel free to come and visit our class throughout the day. There are visitor’s passes at the office. In addition, I would love to have parent volunteers! Volunteer Forms are available at the office and parental support and help is greatly appreciated! Your child will have a folder for mail, (notes from school, newsletters and corrected assignments), and a place to put his/her homework. Some assignments we will be collecting at school in portfolios to demonstrate mastery of standards. Don’t worry if your child’s mail folder is thin! At the end of each trimester we will be inviting family members to view student work and mastery of standards! Please keep finished papers; at home in a folder, until the end of the trimester, in case there are is discrepancy in the grade book. Feel free to send notes to school to communicate with me as needed. 6 Skyward and School Notes A great way to keep track of student progress is through Skyward Family Access. I will be teaching students how to use Skyward in class. Parents need to stop by the office to get a password for Family Access. You will then receive a sheet detailing instructions on how to log on to your account. Through Skyward, you can also view what students purchase for school lunches, check grades for all subjects and classes, and have a direct link to teacher’s email addresses. School Notes is my personal webpage. I will post learning standards, links to websites safe for kids and later in the year, electronic flashcards. I will also post homework assignments and files like the Weekly Academic Planner and classroom Routines and Procedures. There is a link for my email address and a calendar. In addition, if you sign up, you will be emailed each time I update the site. I encourage you and your family to use my site at http://new.schoolnotes.com/rcharbonneau/. You can also Google School Notes and search for my name or Tukes Valley Middle School. I am looking forward to a great 2009-2010 school year! Sincerely, Mrs. Charbonneau 7