Sunday, August 24, 2014

Follow us....

The most often asked question at 3:00 pm across the country is probably,
“What did you do in school today?” There’s no need to ask that question again!

Here are 5 ways you can make sure that you know what’s happening in your child’s classroom, Pershing School, and South Berwyn District 100:

1.  Register for eChalk. You’ll be able to see all assignments that are posted. You can sign up for email or text alerts that will be sent when the teacher posts something new. You’ll have a full understanding of what your child is doing each day at school and what is expected for homework. Here’s the link that will help you:

2. Class Dojo: Your child’s teacher has or will be sending you a sign up code. With that code, you’ll get a  reminder every Friday to log in and see your weekly report of your student. With Class Dojo, your child’s teacher can track behavior, homework completion, participation, and more. You’ll also be able to get text message reminders through the Class Dojo account regarding PTA & school events, field trips, etc!

3. Parent Portal on STI: Parents who don’t already have a log-in to view their student’s information and grades, will receive one on Sept. 4th’s Parent Orientation Night. Graded work will be posted here. Report cards are paperless this year, so this is how you’ll view each report card.

4. Twitter: Each teacher has a Twitter account and posts frequently, giving shout outs for student effort; highlighting incredible moments; and giving information. Besides your classroom teacher, other support staff including reading, ESL, music, art, PE have Twitter accounts so you’ll want to follow them all. Pershing School has an account that I manage so you’ll want to follow @PanthersD100 on Twitter. The school district Twitter account is @SouthBerwyn100 All the Twitter accounts will be posted on Sept. 4th PON.

5. Facebook: Pershing School posts frequently on a Facebook page. Even if you don’t have a Facebook account, you can follow the link and see what’s posted. We’d love it if you’d like our page and comment on and like our posts!

All of the videos that I create, I share through Twitter and Facebook. I’m a new user on Instagram and I have vowed to post a pic a day. So far, I’ve been a big failure but resolve to keep trying! So follow us to follow your kids each day!

Twitter: @PanthersD100
Instagram: PanthersD100

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Believe in your students....and yourself

“Believe in more than what you think people are capable of. They just might surprise you.” That was the message delivered on Friday at our opening Institute Day session by Katie Wahl, a former D100 math teacher who became a quadriplegic in a tragic accident.  Katie told her story of pushing beyond the limits suggested by medical professionals and gaining physical strength, along with hope, as she continues her journey.

Her message was a strong one for teachers and parents to look beyond what others might see as limitations; learning disabilities, hearing or vision impairments, physical disabilities as well as effects of poverty, lack of preschool, etc. Often those excuses for lack of progress are students’ greatest barriers to success.

What we believe about ourselves and our students can predict our success. Carol Dweck, in the book, Mindset, The New Psychology of Success, encourages people to choose to learn and seek feedback in
order to grow. Her research shows that deliberate practice at a skill is a much greater determinate of success than innate talent. The author suggests that recognizing a child’s effort while learning rather than focusing on right answers, will push a child’s learning further. Dr. Dweck found in her research that children will almost always persist in a task when their effort is praised. Those who are praised only for achievement, hesitate to try harder tasks for fear of failure.

Our staff will take Katie’s message to heart; to believe that our students are capable of more than we can imagine. We worked together on Friday and committed to creating formative assessment tools that will help us give the best feedback to improve learning. We recommitted to providing opportunities that will fully engage children in their learning; working with a sense of audience, learning with others, incorporating choice and novelty in tasks. We are planning interactive workshops that will help our parents learn from each other to strengthen their students’ learning.

Attitudes and beliefs can determine action. The Pershing School staff is looking forward to watching our students' growth soar this year and supporting each other and our students' parents as we maintain our focus.

We believe that our students are capable of more than we can imagine.