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Monday, May 6, 2013

Writing, Spelling, Quidditch, and Film-Making-May 7, 2013

Dear Sexton Mt. Families:                                                                                                  

If you haven’t visited our school lately you’ve missed out on some special displays.  In honor of Staff Appreciation Week our students did some imaginative writing about their teacher’s life outside of school.  The writing is hilarious!  From errands to super hero work involving high fashion, kids have definite ideas about how staff members spend free time.  I hope you get to stop by and read their work.

As evidence by the work on our walls, our school is full of amazing writers.  We also have some exceptional spellers.  Last week Esme Fife-Adams took second place at the Washington County Division 1 Spelling Bee.  We are so proud of her!  She shared with students at the March assembly that she does a lot of reading so sees all sorts of words.  This is yet one more example of how practice makes proficient!

Students are continuing to work on all sorts of things here at Sexton Mountain.  Quidditch matches during PE and Portland history to music are just a few of the things kids are bubbling about.  We have several teams who have had work selected for recognition at the Signal to Noise Festival.  To have so many finalists representing our school is an honor indeed!  Congratulations to Mrs. Krueger’s class and the volunteers who helped them develop their ideas into film.  Visit to learn more about this special event.  The second round of statewide assessments for those who have not yet met expectations or growth targets has started.  Thanks to those who donated exercise balls and sugarless chewing gum for kids to use while testing.  Mouth movement and bouncing bodies seems to help kids focus and this added concentration is paying off.  As I visited classrooms Monday teachers were teaching and learners were learning.  Great things are happening at Sexton Mountain School!

I was visiting with a first grader today and when I said something about doing great work during the last two months of school he said, “Mrs. C.-B.—we have just days to go, not months!”  I think he’s started his count down.  My daughter will move into her very first apartment the Saturday after school gets out so I’m thinking about where to find a cheap bed and kitchen chairs while the first grader is planning his lazy days of summer.  I fully expect to be busy and engaged to the very last minute of the school year because we have many exciting things planned.  Thank you for sharing your children with us!  Thank you for making Sexton Mountain School such a great place to learn and grow. 

Take Care,

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

Thank you!
§  Thanks to all the amazing people who transformed our staff room into a tropical paradise Monday morning.  Thanks also to those who brought in special treats for staff.  (Check out the Sparky’s Spirit Facebook Page to see the cool pictures.)
§  Thanks to Toni Fisher for working with our Literacy Support team to improve instruction. We are so lucky to have amazing instructional coaches as our volunteers.
§  Thanks to Holly Heaver for getting the word out about Bike and Walk to School Month.  The parking lot has been MUCH less congested and we have kids ready to learn since they’ve come to school already having exercised.  Caleb told me this week that research shows that exercise improves learning so I’d guess we have about 100 kids who are coming ready to roll!
§  Thanks to our kindergarten students and teachers plus instructional assistants for participating in the University of Oregon study on math instruction.  The ROOTS project ends soon but our learning will continue.
§  Thanks to our PTC for the ipads.  Just this week a second grader squealed that it was ipad Monday in the resource room and he loved math on Mondays now.
§  Thanks to Jenny Tan for finding small plates at the Goodwill for our staff room!
§  Thanks to Odin and Tiffany Hellum for doing some weekend weed whacking around the school.

§  Thanks to Kate K. for organizing Staff Appreciation Week.
§  Thanks to Ruben’s mom for asking if there were any odd jobs that needed doing when she had an extra 30 minutes of time last week.  She knocked out an important project.
§  Thanks to our amazing team of math correctors. 
§  Thanks to Lindsay Zobrist for sharing GREAT teaching ideas weekly with our staff.  Lindsay is to teaching as Pinterest is to party planning.
§  Thanks to our Fifth Grade Party Planners for providing Kuerig coffee makers for the staff room and remote workroom.  Teachers love these and have enjoyed the coffee, tea, and cocoa that were also provided.
§  Thanks to Kerrigan, Katie, Caitlyn and Hallie for cleaning up after vandals Monday.  We had eggs and toilet paper messing up the place but the girls swept up eggshells and made things look nice.

Wish List--These are little things or jobs that will make a difference to our kids. Feel free to send items in or let Mrs. CB know if you are willing to do a project.
§  Volunteer needed to spend one-hour packing boxes in a portable.  This can be done between 8:00am and 4:00pm
§  Donations of small (saucer size) plates and metal spoons or forks wanted for the staffroom.
§  Volunteers to make posters and prize bags for parking lot incentives.  This can be project sent home in backpack mail with your child.
§  Donations of sugarless bubblegum or fruit flavored gum to make testing more fun and focused.
§  Volunteer to spend 3 minutes tidying up the staffroom afternoons between 1:00 and 3:00pm.  This job was done by a volunteer earlier in the year and it made a huge difference.  Something as simple as wiping down the counter, emptying the dishwasher, or rinsing out a coffee pot saves time for teachers and now that the year is winding down, they can use every minute!

Upcoming Events
May 6-10-Staff Appreciation Week
May 13- Bike Safety Assembly
May 15-Passport Club Check -- 8:30 am -- 12:00 pm
May 17-PTC Carnival
May 23-Volunteer Appreciation Celebration-2:00-3:00pm
May 23-PBIS Assembly-8:25am-Students go straight to the cafe on these days.
May 24-Assessment Day-No School
May 27-Memorial Day Holiday-No School
May 28-Pizzicatto Night-Dining for Dollars
May 30-Cultural Celebration Assembly- Grupo Condor-   (Thank you PTC!)
8:30-9:20-Olson, 4th and 5th Grade
9:35-10:35-Baldwin, Pfaff, K, 1st, 2nd Grade
May 30-3rd Grade Portland Performance-2:00pm
May 31-1st Gr. Field Trip
May 31-Kindergarten Field Trip
June 4-3rd Gr. Field Trip
June 7-Community Engagement Committee meeting -- 9:00 am
June 7-PTC meeting -- 9:30 am
June 7-Field Day-PARENT VOLUNTEERS NEEDED-Email if you can help.
June 7-4th Grade Human Growth and Development Lesson-Materials available for preview in office.
June 12-Mt. Guide picnic
June 13-PBIS Assembly-8:25am-Students go straight to the cafe on these days.
June 13-5th grade party at Conestoga Rec Center
June 13-Last day of school

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