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Monday, January 28, 2013

Celebration-January 28, 2013

Dear Sexton Mt. Families:                                                                                                                                                        

Last week I had an opportunity to meet with students in third, fourth and fifth grade.  We talked about math patterns and how recognizing and applying patterns can make some tasks in life easier.  While I met with students, teachers met with our Response to Intervention teacher, Megan Smith, to discuss our mid-year progress check and plan next steps for instruction.  Teachers had many little celebrations as we saw how much students have grown during the first half of the year.  This week, Megan Smith and I will meet with the rest of the teams.  Exciting things are happening at Sexton Mountain and we see evidence of growth!  We have reasons to celebrate.

Another reason to celebrate is one of our student has been wildly successful on  Andrew G. is currently ranked 61st in the nation on the website!  Since our school-wide improvement emphasis has been on mathematics this year, I have a personal little party each and every time I see our children succeed in this area. 

Since September 24, our first through fifth graders have solved 109,271 math equations just on the one-minute weekly timed tests.  This means our amazing pool of volunteers have corrected even more!  The ability to quickly recall basic facts is important for math success. We hope you will continue to practice at home too.   Here are some ways you might do this:
·          Flashcard practice during television commercials
·          Keep a set of flashcards in the car and have your child practice at every stoplight
·          After dinner, practice equations orally for five minutes before you clear the table
·          Download printable worksheets from the web or make your own for kids to do


First Grade
Second Grade
Third Grade
Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division
Fourth Grade
Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division
Fifth Grade
Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division
Week Of Sept. 24
Week of Jan. 24

Another one of our strategies for improving student achievement in mathematics is to increase student vocabulary related to mathematics.  The ability to understand math vocabulary and process words associated with mathematics sets apart strong mathematicians from the rest.  In all classrooms, teachers are working to explicitly teach the terms.  At home, start a list of words or phrases that indicate what operation is needed in order to solve a number story problem.  Each Wednesday, students have had the opportunity to wear a math word (in the form of a sticker).

Additionally, we’ve worked on improving math problem solving skills. Children must understand what math word problems are asking and have a bank of strategies for solving problems.

There are many great math resources available online to provide support and practice.  Check out some of the sites below.

We know that practice makes proficient.  The best way to become a better reader is to READ then write about it.  The best way to become a better mathematician is to practice, reflect and practice some more.  Thank you for supporting our students and teachers with all your support.  Thank you for sharing your children with us!

Take Care,

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

Thank you!
·      Thanks to Lori Laraway, Kara Ebbutt, Anna McLeod, Booma Murali, and Amanda Savage for volunteering to help implement MUSIC WORKSHOP in classrooms.  Thanks to Tiffany Hellum for chairing the MUSIC WORKSHOP.  This program is similar to Art Literacy and is going to provide a great opportunity for our students!  We continue to look for volunteers so that all of our classrooms get this special experience.
·      Thanks to Megan McCue for donating hand soap for before lunch hand washing. 
·      Thanks to Roger Golliver, Heather Hough, Jen Fife-Adams, Abeer Awad, and Seona Zimmerman for leading the second round of battles for the Oregon Battle of the Books this week. 
·      Thanks to Lindsey Zobrist for sharing GREAT teaching ideas with us regularly.
·      Thanks to the Goodman and Harrison families for facilitating Family Movie Night.  Thanks to Sally Ebanks and Mary Duncan for keeping the popcorn stocked.  Families had fun!

Upcoming Events
January 31  Spirit Assembly at 8:25
February 1  Staff Development Day—No School
February 14-Dress Your Best Day
February 15-Will Hornyak-Storyteller Assemblies
February 15-Hundredth Day of School Dance, 6:30-8:30pm
February 18- Presidents’ Day-No School
February 20 Passport Club Check Day (Grades 3,4,5)-Email Heidi at to volunteer.
February 22 5th Grade Biz Town Field Trip
February 22-Art Fair 6:30-8:30pm

Wish List--These are little things or jobs that will make a difference to our kids. Feel free to send them in.
·          Volunteers Needed-We will begin our One Book, One School-school wide reading experience in mid-February.  Volunteers are needed to help label and distribute books on February 4 at 9:00am in the staff room.
·          32 Ounce  Yogurt Containers Needed
·          Donation of liquid hand soap (refills are perfect)
·          Donation of $10 Powell’s or Barnes and Noble gift cards for Ms. Kimball to use as prizes for the Adopt a Bookshelf Program

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