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The News - September 6, 2013
Sunday, September 8, 2013 10:20 PM

The News From Room 209
email penny.jones@mpls.k12.mn.us
September 6, 2013

Starting Off on the Right Foot
Are you wondering how things are going in Room 209? What exactly are we doing to start the school year? WELL, we have been busy planning for a successful year!

Hopes and Dreams are individual student plans for the school year. Goal Setting Conferences are hopes and dreams with parent and teacher input. However, it all really begins with creating Essential Agreements. Essential Agreements represent a contract created by the students that states how the 209 community will work and play together. Group consensus on these expectations is reached after several rounds of discussion and refinement of ideas.

The process began with the whole group listing the “worst possible outcomes” for the year (not learning, no friends, work is too hard, mean teacher, etc.). That list was followed by the “best possible outcomes” for the year (work is just right, learning a lot, lots of new friends, fun projects, field trips, etc.).

The next step involved table groups of 5 or 6 creating and sharing lists of actions that would help us achieve the “Best Possible Outcomes.” Each group shared their ideas with the class, and then in the final step, the actions were consolidated into one list. Each student then selected those statements that he/she felt were the best. Votes were tallied and we’re off to a great year! So, how will we achieve these outcomes? These are our Room 209 Essential Agreements -
Do your best work.
Focus
Listen with your ears and your mind.
Participate
Be a risk-taker and try new things.
Be persistent.
Be kind and include everyone.

Conferences
I will begin scheduling goal setting conferences next week, with dates beginning the week of September 16. I will send home a schedule of dates and times. Please select at least 2 times that will work with your schedule. You can return the form or email your selections to me. I will let you know when I have your conference scheduled. I will add more dates and times later in the month. Look for pre-conference planning forms to come home soon.

Vocabulary
We encountered some very interesting vocabulary in our readings about Ernest Shackleton and Diana Nyad this week: STAMINA, ENDURANCE, CRUCIAL, TREACHEROUS. What a great start to our Word Work! You can help build vocabulary at home by talking about and using these words with your child. One or two encounters with a word is just not enough.

Next week
Place Value, Time for Kids news magazine, Friday Physics, Stamp Club, Developing a list of potential writing topics, and more!

On the Calendar
Thursday, September 12 - Parent Information Night; 5:45 - - 7:30pm
Swimming at the Blaisdell YMCA - September 23 - 26