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Monday, April 2, 2012

Sexton Mountain News-April 3, 2012

Dear Sexton Mt. Families:                                                                                                                                                         

It was so exciting Monday to hear about the adventures students had over the break.  While sleeping-in topped the list of the best parts of the break, it sounds like students enjoyed March Madness basketball games, water parks, roller skating, time with families and new adventures like crossing the steel bridge.  I spent a lot of time reading over the break and enjoyed children’s book as well as ones intended for grown ups. 

Several times a year we practice District-wide earthquake drills.  During a recent drill, I happened upon a faithful volunteer.  She was under the table on her elbows and knees but continued to do work for the classroom.  This type of dedicated multi-tasking is often evident here at Sexton Mountain.  We have so many kind people working hard so that our students will be successful.  Our school is a special place indeed.

While the week before the break seems ages ago, we had several exciting things happen that week.  Our school-wide Spelling Bee took place on Wednesday.  We had kids from every class participate.  Mallory M. will represent our school at the District Spelling Bee later in April.  We also had several students selected to represent our school at the Oregon Writing Festival.  Xenia, Aleksandra, and Caitlyn will take part in the festival in May at PSU.

Kindness Kards (not named by a Spelling Bee winner) have made it to Sexton Mountain School.  Third graders in Sherwood created these cards as a way of paying it forward with an act of kindness.  Packs of the Kindness Kards are left for others to find.  The finder can choose a card from the deck and perform an act of kindness then leave the cards for someone else to find.  Each act of kindness is listed on the back of a postcard that can be returned to our school so we can see how many kind acts happen.  Learn more about this movement by visiting or

This week students in grades 3, 4, and 5 started the Oregon statewide assessment. All the hard work and learning students have done since kindergarten can be applied to these assessments.  Attention to detail, stamina, and critical thinking are a few of the skills students will apply.  Plenty of rest and a healthy breakfast EVERYDAY prepare students for the next steps in learning, whether it be assessments, projects, or acquiring new skills. 

Whether applying learning to statewide assessments or on integrated projects, one of the most anticipated learning experiences in the elementary years is a 5th grade field trip to BizTown.  Through daily lessons, hands-on activities, and active participation in this simulated community designed to support differentiated learning styles, students develop a strong understanding of the relationship between what they learn in school and their successful participation in a worldwide economy.   Between now and April 20, we will have a silent auction to raise money for next year’s 5th Grade Biztown trip.  We have two beautiful adirondack chairs made at Biztown by our students.  The set will go to the highest bidder on April 20.   The bidding sheet is in the office above the lunch moneybox.

I happened to be in Mr. Shotola’s fourth grade classroom on Monday morning as they were hard at work learning about the Oregon Trail.  Liam mentioned that he’d used his time in technology class to look up facts about the Oregon Trail.  Students were abuzz sharing information about everything from pets that might have been brought along to mortality rates.  I couldn’t help but wonder what this group would be like next year when they go to BizTown.  Indeed, great things are happening at Sexton Mountain School.  Thank you for sharing your children with us!


Dr. Teresa Clemens-Brower
A.k.a.  Mrs. C.-B.

Wish List--These are little things or jobs that will make a difference to our kids. Feel free to send them in.
·       Volunteers to review our Student Handbook and offer suggestions for improvement for next year
·       Postcard stamps
·       Postcards
·       Small prizes for staff community building contests

Classroom Placement Info
As we plan for the 2012-2013 school year, we are asking for parent input regarding the learning environment that fits your child.  We want to achieve the best possible balances and learning for all students at our school.  It is very important for us to get a complete picture of your child as a learner.  Current teachers will be providing information regarding students' learning needs as well as current specialists.  Your information, in addition, will be of great value in understanding individual needs for all of our students.  If you desire, please write a letter commenting on the following points:
*Your child's learning style. 
*The type of teaching which best suits you child. Please do not list specific teacher names as teaching assignments have not been determined. 
*The type of classroom situation/environment you prefer. 
*Any special concerns that need to be considered.
Please drop letters by the office or send letter to by April 28.  No letters will be accepted after April 28.  Much thought and care goes into placing children.  Your input is one valuable piece of the process.  By the time we have finished this procedure, we have created an intricately woven community of children.  Your information allows us to meet your concerns while doing what is best for all children at Sexton Mountain.  Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Upcoming Workshops for Families
 The purpose of each 30-minute workshop will be to provide information and gather input. 
·       Positive Behavior Support-Teach, Reinforce, Reteach-April 12 at 8:45am
·       Make and Take Math Games-Strategies for Keeping Skills Strong During the Summer Months-April 12 at 6:30pm
·       Reading Assessments Revealed-April 19 at 9:30am
·       GoogleDocs for Families Presented by Pam LeLand-May 22 at 8:45am

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