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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Great Schools, Spring Break Safety and Reading--March 15, 2016

Dear Sexton Mt. Families:                                                                                                                                     
 
My youngest son graduated from high school just last week.  He finished up at Merlo Station Community School (a BSD option program) where he got to power through his credits and graduate ahead of schedule.  He even accrued some college credit at PCC.  My other two both graduated from Aloha High School and Oregon State University.    The Beaverton School District has great schools!
 
I am proud to work in a District where I get to see students working hard every day!  Your children have a very special spot in my heart.  They have been busy telling me about plans for spring break.  From home projects or trips to the rec center to swimming to travel abroad, our kids have a wide range of experience that will be different than their normal routine. Because education is the pathway to the future AND college and career readiness, I often share things that families can do away from home to extend mathematical thinking or deep thinking around text.  Education is the foundation of public health too. Education can inform the public about potential risks and safety options and help people behave safely.  Because our children will be in new places, doing different things next week, please think about what conversations you need to have with your child to prevent risky behaviors or how to behave safely.
 
Vehicle Safety-In your car you likely have a properly installed car seat or booster seat.  What other vehicles will your child ride in during the next few weeks?  What needs to be considered?
  •   Cars, Taxis, Planes, Trains
  • Bikes (Do rental bikes come with helmets that fit your child’s head?)
  • Riding Lawn Mowers
  • Pick Up Trucks
  • Snow mobiles
 
In addition to vehicle safety, there are other areas that can be dangerous for children.  Check out each of the categories below and think about where your child will be and what your child will be doing.  What conversations need to be had now in order to make sure they are safe in new situations?
 
 
Drowning
 
Suffocation
Poison
 
Fires/Burns
Falling
Sports and Recreation
Pools
Lakes
Oceans
Creeks
Rivers
Hot Tubs
Wetlands
Hotel tubs
 
(Spring is the time when there is a lot more debris in natural bodies of water so think about that too.)
Sleeping Surfaces
Play Surfaces
Snow
Ropes
Sand
 
Cords from window coverings
 
Straps on backpacks or hoodies 
 
Medication
 
Household Products
 
Lawn and Garden chemicals
 
Jelly fish
Insects
Reptiles
 
Chemicals for art projects (ie model glue)
Cooking
Camp Fires
Candles
Woodstoves
Fireplaces
Sun
House fires
 
Bikes
Scooters
Play structures
Trees
Decks
Balconies
Windows
Hiking
Overlooks
Caves
 
Snow sports (too little
or too much snow)
Surfing
Boogie Boarding
Water Parks
Theme Parks
Spectators in the Stands
Weapon Safety (archery, bb guns, paintball, unsecured guns)
Overexertion
 
 
 
In addition to accidents, think about tummy troubles that result from improperly prepared, treated or stored food, water.  More than once, students have returned from vacations with stories of visits to the ER due to dehydration.  My children are especially sensitive to some water so on our trip next week, they will only drink bottled water in order to prevent issues.  My nieces and nephew have severe food allergies so we will be careful about the snacks we bring.  Additionally, we have people in our family who are highly allergic to bees so I’ll make sure I know where the Epi-pen is kept at all times.  Any time we travel we wash our hands more than normal and are careful about where we rest our heads to prevent the spread of the cold, flu or head lice.
 
Make sure your children also know how to contact you if they get separated!  Do they know your first AND last name or the names of people you are staying with?  Do they know your phone number?  If they don’t, do you have the info recorded and stored in a pocket on their person?  When I was 4 I got lost along a parade route and when people asked who I was looking for (as tears streamed down my face), my reply of “Rosie’s Mom” didn’t get me far, even in the very small town of LaGrande, Oregon.    Do your children know who to ask for help if they are lost? 
 
I look forward to hearing about your child’s adventures when we return to school on Tuesday, March 29.  Please feel free to send me pictures of your children being AMAZING!  I delight in learning about their lives away from school almost as much as I enjoy seeing them learn here at school.  Whether you stay at home or travel to another hemisphere, I hope your child will find time each day to read.  Vacations are the perfect time to practice real life math skills too!  From covering a shoebox with paper to making a home for acorn people, to cooking or shopping, there are many ways that adults can remind children that math is all around.
 
Many kids are likely to start thinking about the upcoming Science Fair (April 28) over the break too.  Now is the time to start the projects!  Between Pinterest and Powell’s, there are many great ideas for investigations to get your creative juices flowing.
 
The thing I love  most about Sexton Mountain students is their resiliency.  When something doesn’t go as planned, they make it an opportunity for learning.  Stick-with-it ness is an important life skill and we see the fruits of this labor daily!  Thank you for sharing your children with us!  Have a great spring break!
 
With gratitude,
 
Dr. Teresa Clemens-Brower
a.k.a.  Mrs. C.-B.
Principal
 
Check out these staff blogs!


 
Reminders
  • Report Cards will come home on Friday, March 18. 
  • All About Me-Family Homework-Kindergarten through fourth grade families got homework to complete by this Friday.  This is intended to provide an opportunity for families to provide input for us as we build classes for the upcoming school year AND will provide 2016-2017 teachers an introduction to your child.
  • Neighborhood Respect—Please respect private driveways of our neighbors at drop off or pick up time. 
  • After School Safety-The paved path around our field and the pavement around the playground are closed to children from 2:50pm until 3:20pm so that buses and day care vans can pick up students. 
  • Bus Stop Safety- If your child rides the bus, please remind them to stay several feet away from the street and to be mindful of cars. Kids should not play chase or push games at the bus stop. 
  • In the News-Did you see that Sexton Mt. was highlighted in the Valley Times last week?
 
Appreciation
  • Thanks to those who helped with Kindergarten Orientation last week.  Adria Eilers and Amy Stewart were especially amazing!
  • Thanks to the Camou family for the donation of foaming hand soap.
 
Wish List-These are things or jobs that make a difference to our kids, teachers or school. Send in items or let Mrs. CB know if you can volunteer.
 
  • For P.E. classes, Mr. Miller and Mrs. Lew are always willing to accept fitness and sporting goods items that are in good, safe working order.  For example, yoga mats, exercise bands/balls, light dumbbells, balls, etc.
  • Volunteers with neat handwriting are needed to make word study games.  A sample of the game for you to replicate can be sent home with your child through backpack mail.  

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Battles, Humor, Joy and Future Planning-March 8, 2016

Please note our new phone numbers:
Main Office  503-356-2470              
Attendance Line  503-356-2471          
Fax 503-356-2475
Dear Sexton Mt. Families:                                                                                     
 
They were set for battle—intense, focused, controlled breathing—but then someone burst into the room with a question for the moderator.  The group relaxed ever so slightly.  When it seemed like the interrupter would stay forever, I heard one of the participants whisper wishfully, “Toodle-oo,” as he smiled and waved his fingers.  His team was ready for battle.

Masha, Raymond, Suhani and Weston represented Sexton Mountain at the Oregon Battle of the Books last weekend.  They exemplified excellence, collaboration and sportsmanship.  They listened intently, shared responsibility, and verified thinking before the spokesperson shared their answer.  The group’s nonverbal communication exuded relaxed encouragement and teamwork.  As a book, character or problem was mentioned eyes would light up as they looked at one another and gave a thumbs up or questioning shrug.  The nodding, smiles and unison of whispers made me believe that this team had a plan! I know they inspired many other teams here at Sexton Mt.   Thanks again to Jen Fife-Adams, Roger Golliver, and Dawn Kimball for the time they put into making OBOB happen for our students. 

Many students are already making plans for their OBOB team next year.  I’m thrilled to know that our kids are inspired to read and remember.  We know that when children read or are read to during the summer that they make gains in reading achievement.  Practice makes proficient.  Please mark your calendar for a Fabulous Family Literacy Night on the evening of June 2.  We will kick off summer reading that night at the Beaverton City Library.

Families are beginning to think about the upcoming school year.  We get to meet our incoming kindergarten students this week and our fifth graders get to visit the middle school.  We are still working hard to finish the school year strong.  Next week, all students in grades K-4 will get an “All About Me” form for families to complete together then return to school.  This will be the place for families to include input for classroom placement for 2016-2017 in lieu of letters to the principal.  The “All About Me” forms will be shared with 2016-2017 teachers.  

Preparing for a new school year is very exciting.  Spring in an elementary school is also very exciting.  Thanks for sharing your children with us!!

Dr. Teresa Clemens-Brower

a.k.a.  Mrs. C.-B.
Principal




Check out these staff blogs!

Reminders
  • Neighborhood Respect—Please respect private driveways of our neighbors at drop off or pick up time. 
  • After School Safety-The paved path and playground are closed to children from 2:50pm until 3:20pm so that buses and day care vans can pick up students. 
  • Bus Stop Safety- If your child rides the bus, please remind them to stay several feet away from the street and to be mindful of cars. Kids should not play chase or push games at the bus stop. 
  • In the News-Did you see that Sexton Mt. was highlighted in the District News last week?  The story was picked by several local news agencies.

Appreciation
  • Thanks to Hina Ali and Sandy Goff for assembling games for us!

Wish List-These are things or jobs that make a difference to our kids, teachers or school. Send in items or let Mrs. CB know if you can volunteer.

  • For P.E. classes, Mr. Miller and Mrs. Lew are always willing to accept fitness and sporting goods items that are in good, safe working order.  For example, yoga mats, exercise bands/balls, light dumbbells, balls, etc.
  • Volunteers are needed to welcome families at Kindergarten Orientation on March 10 from 5:15-6:00pm.  We will have several stations around the school for kids and their families to experience and learn about our school.  All of the materials are ready so all volunteers will need to do is welcome families and get them started on whatever experience is at the station. 
  • Volunteers with neat handwriting are needed to make word study games.  A sample of the game for you to replicate can be sent home with your child through backpack mail.  
 
Upcoming Events
March 10-Kindergarten Orientation 5:30-6:30pm
March 11-No School-Grading Day
March 21-25-No School-Spring Break
March 28- No School-Staff Development Day
April 1-PBIS Assembly
April 8- PTC Sponsored Assembly
April 28-Jog-a-thon
April 28-Science Technology Engineering Art and Math Night (STEAM Night)
April 29-Staff Development Day-No School
May 13-Carnival
May 19- Kindergarten and 1st Grade Music Program at 6:30pm
May 27-No School-Assessment Day
May 30-No School-Holiday
June 10-Field Day (Volunteers will be needed.  Please make sure you’ve completed the new online volunteer application and background check.)
June 11-Run with the Eagles 5K
June 17-Last Day of School

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Sportsmanship, Learning from Failure and PE News-March 1, 2016




Dear Sexton Mt. Families:                                                                                      March 1, 2016

One hundred thirty-one students participated in the Oregon Battle of the Books competition.  In the double elimination tournament there were ten rounds, fifty-eight battles; so fifty-eight times where teams practiced winning or losing with grace.  Our students were part of 12,000 students across the state of Oregon who took part in reading sixteen books and answering questions about them.  At the final battle at school on Friday afternoon our Sexton OBOB organizer noted how our final teams showed amazing sportsmanship.  Over the weekend, I found multiple opportunities to share the story of Zoe, Danielle, Rachel and Kira.  They were our second place winners.  I shared what I noticed about their effort, enthusiasm and smiles as they finished up their OBOB season on Friday.  Though some may refer to this group as the loser of the final battle, they had the stance of champions!    

During his acceptance speech at the Oscars, Pete Docter, winner in the Animated Feature Film category for Inside Out said something that touched my heart.  

“This film was really born out of watching our kids grow up, which is not easy,” Docter said. “Anyone out there who’s in junior high, high school, working it out, suffering — there are days you’re going to feel sad. You’re going to feel angry. You’re going to feel scared. That’s nothing you can choose. But you can make stuff. Make films. Draw. Write. It will make a world of difference.”

I think his words made such an impact because I see that all kids on their journey are struggling to figure things out.  It’s a natural part of growing up.  How kids deal with the emotions surrounding the struggle can help them grow or NOT.  Please think about how you support learning through frustration, disappointment, anger or sadness.  Building the skills to work through authentic emotion.  Thank you for partnering with us to help our children learn to authentically engage in life’s ups and downs. 


As you meet with teachers this week for conferences, rest assured that Sexton Mt. staff care deeply about your child and our desire is for every child to thrive.  As we identify strengths and weaknesses, know that it’s our intention to support your child in partnership with YOU.  WE must work together in the very important job of preparing our children for their future!

Dr. Teresa Clemens-Brower

a.k.a.  Mrs. C.-B.
Principal

PE News
Hoop Shoot - Congratulations to this year's Sexton Mountain Hoop Shoot winners.  These four students made the most basketball free throws out of ten attempts in their age group.  Sixty-six students participated during their PE classes in early December.
10-11 year-old Boys - Carson R.
10-11 year-old Girls - Haimanot H.
8-9 year-old Boys - Justin H.
8-9 year-old Girls - Emilia S.

Haimanot, Justin, and Emilia each went on to win both the Beaverton and Metro Hoop Shoot contests. They went on to place in the Top 5 at the Oregon State Hoop Shoot contest.  We are happy that Haimanot, Emilia, Justin, and Carson enjoyed great experiences that came about due to their hard work, courage, and perseverance.

Shoes in P.E. class
Many students are always well prepared for their P.E. classes by wearing comfortable, safe clothing AND wearing athletic footwear (aka- sneakers).  These students demonstrate the life skill of responsibility. They are poised to succeed and challenge themselves as they engage in a healthy lifestyle.  They are able to move freely and safely with confidence. Unfortunately, we still have too many students who wear inappropriate clothing AND/OR footwear that hinders their success, safety, and ability to move well. Please have students wear athletic shoes (sneakers, tennis shoes) and leave fancy boots, flip flops, and sandals for other school days.  pesextonmountain.blogspot.com

Reminders
  • After School Safety-The paved path around our field and the pavement round the playground are closed to children from 2:50pm until 3:20pm so that buses and day care vans can pick up students. 
  • Bus Stop Safety- If your child rides the bus, please remind them to stay several feet away from the street and to be mindful of cars. Kids should not play chase or push games at the bus stop. 
  • Phone System- We will go “live” with our new phone system the evening of March 3. Our phone number will be changing so look for information on that in upcoming newsletters, on our Facebook page or through a text from me via the Remind.com app.

Appreciation
  • Thanks to Christy Snow, Hina Ali, Lydsay Link, Rikki Anderson, Joe Carrey and Sandy Goff for assembling games and pneumonic devises to support literacy development.  Thanks to their kids for being the delivery crew.

Wish List-These are things or jobs that make a difference to our kids, teachers or school. Send in items or let Mrs. CB know if you can volunteer.

  • For P.E. classes, Mr. Miller and Mrs. Lew are always willing to accept fitness and sporting goods items that are in good, safe working order.  For example, yoga mats, exercise bands/balls, light dumbbells, balls, etc.
  • Donations of foaming hand soap containers (empty or full) will be put to good use.
  • Volunteers are needed to welcome families at Kindergarten Orientation on March 10 from 5:15-6:00pm.  We will have several stations around the school for kids and their families to experience and learn about our school.  All of the materials are ready so all volunteers will need to do is welcome families and get them started on whatever experience is at the station. 
  • Volunteers with neat handwriting are needed to make word study games.  A sample of the game for you to replicate, plus all materials to make multiple copies of the game can be sent home with children through backpack mail.  

   
Upcoming Events
Marc 3-4-No School-Parent/Guardian-Teacher Conferences
March 10-Kindergarten Orientation 5:30-6:30pm
March 11-No School-Grading Day
March 21-25-No School-Spring Break
March 28- No School-Staff Development Day
April 8- PTC Sponsored Assembly
April 28-Jog-a-thon
April 28-Science Technology Engineering Art and Math Night (STEAM Night)
April 29-Staff Development Day-No School
May 13-Carnival
May 19- Kindergarten and 1st Grade Music Program at 6:30pm
May 27-No School-Assessment Day
May 30-No School-Holiday
June 10-Field Day (Volunteers will be needed.  Please make sure you’ve completed the new online volunteer application and background check.)
June 11-Run with the Eagles 5K
June 17-Last Day of School