October 30, 2018
- Halloween Is Here
- RCG Leaders with PRIDE
- Collaboration Afternoon
- A New Jennifer?
- Thanks PAC!
- Self-Regulation at Home and at School
- Winter Production – Save the Date
- Parent Teacher Interviews
- RCG Hosts Networking Meeting
- Demonstrating Teaching and Learning
- Core Competencies at Work
- Community News & Events
SEE CALENDAR: https://rcgarnett.sd35.bc.ca/news-events/
Follow events at RCG Twitter: @AdamWoelders @Meenasd35
- Halloween Parade at RCG – Oct. 31 (8:45am) – Students are welcome to dress in orange and black, or wear a Halloween costume with some limitations: no blood, guts, gore, full face masks, weapons, motorized recreational vehicles, Fortnite dancing, or anything else 40 year old dads think is cool.
- Hot Lunch – Nov. 1, 15 & 29
- Remembrance Day Assembly – Nov. 8, 11:00am – parents and other members of the community are welcome
- Not in session – Friday, Nov. 9 and Monday, Nov. 12. We return to school on Tuesday, Nov. 13.
- Collaboration Day – early dismissal at 1:15pm – Tuesday, Nov. 20
Halloween Is Here!
At RCG we are all about school spirit and celebrating the crazy day of the year we call Halloween. For many of our teachers, Halloween is their favourite day of the year! They love how kids are extra excited, less likely to sit still during math or reading lessons, and how energetic they are after a couple of extra nights where the kids stay up extra late partaking in the festivities of the season. Moreover, teachers love to see the smiles of all the kids with their teeth glistening in a little extra sheen, showing off those candy coated chompers! We believe that nothing beats a couple of school days of a class full of sugared-up little people having fun!
While we love to see kids come to school tomorrow dressed up, we have a couple of guidelines:
- No blood, guts or gore
- No Donald Trump costumes in case people mistake you for Mr. Woelders without hair
- No weapons
- No full face masks or anything that would disguise a student’s identity
- Keep your costume age-appropriate
- No references to alcohol consumption or other illicit substances
If you don’t have a costume but want to get in the spirit, pretend you are from the Netherlands and dress in orange and black!
RCG Leaders with “PRIDE”
At RCG we believe the overarching purpose of our school K-5 is to help students see themselves as leaders and build the skills necessary to provide leadership wherever they might have influence. We understand that a quality of successful organizations, and a major factor in high student achievement, is having a common language and sense of purpose.
A leader is someone who has the opportunity to influence others around him or her, and sometimes we don’t get to choose whether we want to be a leader or not. To better define this, last year through parent surveys and staff discussions, we decided as a learning community that we believe leaders are problem-solvers, responsible (proactive), inclusive (respectful), determined (perseverant) and engaged. Taken together, those qualities describe leaders with P-R-I-D-E. But we want also be able to describe those qualities in ways students understand and can execute consistently in our halls, classrooms and on the playground. We invite you to send us your ideas (firstname.lastname@example.org) or to pop by the school to provide your own thoughts on our idea collection board outside the library commons.
While we know that for some parents in our community, the early dismissals present a challenge. And… we want you to know that we are working hard to improve learning for all students on those precious days we are not in session or dismiss early. All across the school on Monday, RCG staff we engaged in important learning and conversation purposed to improve our practices as educators.
Here’s what we were working on this Monday afternoon:
- Grade 2 & learning commons teachers: How do we implement the new Nelson Science resources into our classroom instruction?
- Kindergarten teachers: How do we commonly assess kindergarten writing to provide information that helps us target instruction on improving students’ writing?
- Grade 3 teachers: How do we improve literacy instruction using guided reading and Words Their Way?
- Grade 4/5 teachers: How do we better communicate student learning? How will we design explorations experiences for students in entrepreneurship and performing arts?
- Grade 1 teachers: How do we implement Adrienne Gear’s Reading Power into our reading instruction?
- SEAs and support staff: How do we support students in developing self-regulation skills at school?
A New Jennifer???
Which is the new Jennifer and the old one?
RCG staff and students are excited to welcome a new member to our team of leaders with PRIDE. We welcome Jennifer Martins. Ms. Martins comes to us from Texas schools where she last taught grade 6 and was recognized among her peers as a highly effective and hard working teacher. She will be filling Mrs. Burns’ maternity leave in the grade 4-5 class, division 3. We are thrilled she is joining us and look forward to seeing the impact she will have on learners at RCG.
Again, we cannot thank our PAC team of volunteers enough! This year’s Halloween Dance was another success. Please be reminded that the strength of our community and the value that students take from their K-5 experience relies on the dedication and commitment of parent volunteers. Please make time to join us at our monthly PAC meetings, the be engaged in the community and find time to support the great work our PAC does for learners at our school. The next PAC meeting is Monday, November 19, 7:00-8:30pm.
Self-Regulation at Home & School
As we continue to support students in developing self-regulation, we are trying to encourage the use of a common language to describe how students are feeling at a particular moment. We know from research that self-regulation – the ability that individuals have to stay calm, alert and learning – is essential to success in life and school. Dis-regulation in students and adults has a correlation with decreased time on task and achievement in schools. It is important that parents and teachers can model, and use the language of self-regulation in conversation with students.
We will continue to share more information with parents about how to support us in teaching self-regulation skills to kids, and hope to hold an information evening in the spring.
RCG Winter Production – Save the Date
RCG staff are proud to announce that we will produce and perform a whole school K-5 concert on December 18 and 19 with performances at 1:00pm and 6:30pm. We are producing a musical and dramatic performance of a timeless classic holiday story, Charles Dickens’ – A Christmas Carol. Set in 19th century, Victorian England, this story explores themes such as generosity, inequality, and social justice which still hold relevance for us all today.
Grade 4 and 5 students will perform the acting pieces, while Mrs. Weiss’ music classes will perform musical pieces in-between each scene. If your child has accepted an acting role, the expectation is that he or she is here for both nights of performances in December. A permission form will be going home today for all students involved in the acting.
We will likely need some additional community help with costumes, props and set production so stayed tuned for how you can help, or let Mr. Woelders, Mrs. Leigh-Ann White or Mrs. Weiss know of any ideas or special skills you have. We expect that this will be a great opportunity to involve the whole school in the performing arts.
Parent Teacher Interviews
Thank you to all the parents who made time to attend last week’s parent-teacher interviews and to focus our conversations about how best to support student learning. We encourage all parents and guardians to continue to be engaged in the important work we do here. Term One report cards are approaching fast, but ideally the report card is non-event because you know how your child is doing on a weekly basis. Continue to keep in touch with teachers and have those important conversations about how you can positively support your child at home and at school.
RCG Hosts Networking Meeting
This past week RCG hosted the Langley Schools Elementary and Middle School Administrators Networking meeting – once per month a different school hosts this important meeting where assistant principals, principals, district staff and district leadership team meet together to engage in professional development and to further their growth as leaders in Langley Schools.
Mr. Woelders had an opportunity to show case our school and the work we are doing to improve our reading results for all students. We shared where we are at in this journey, which is at a similar place to most urban-based schools across the province where there has been a recent trend downward in terms of students’ achievement in reading. But we also had an opportunity to share the work teachers are doing in their classrooms at RCG to sharpen and refine our expertise in reading instruction, self-regulation and assessment. Langley administrators reported how welcomed they felt at RCG and noted the intentional and purposeful literacy instruction taking place in our classrooms.
Demonstrating Teaching & Learning
As you know, RCG is a teaching school. We share our practices on a regular basis, opening our doors to teachers and administrators from around the province. We aren’t unique because we have better teachers. In fact, our teachers are pretty typical, doing many of the same great things teachers are doing in other schools in Langley. What makes us unique is we are the only school where all of our teachers are committed to inviting others into their classrooms to share our attempts to use research-proven, highly effective teaching practices in areas such as numeracy and literacy.
This past week was a busy one as we hosted over 50 administrators from Langley schools, 24 SFU students and a team of kindergarten teachers from Nanaimo Christian School. Sharing our practices and engaging in conversations about what works in education also benefits our students by sharpening and refining our practices, as well as introducing us to the great work that our visiting teachers are sharing with us.
Core Competencies at Work
One of the important features of our new, re-designed curriculum in BC, is that it is built around the Core Competencies. Core Competencies are embedded in every subject K-12 and they are the essential skills or qualities that help develop successful and productive people. They include thinking skills (creativity, critical thinking), communication skills, and social-emotional skills. An important part of any child’s education therefore is for teachers to find ways to bring out these competencies in their instruction and design opportunities for students to use them. In this collaborative project between grade 4 and K classes, students designed a science experiment and documented their predictions and results. Part of the learning was identifying what competencies they used.
Community News & Events: