Friday, May 6, 2016

May 6, 2015 Preschool & Elementary

PK-6 Principal
Sara Grimm
Twitter: saramarleygrimm
SKYPE: saramarleygrimm

Back To School Parent-Teacher Conferences
Howard-Winn will kickoff the 2016-17 school year with Back to School Parent-Teacher Conferences on Tuesday, August 23rd. The P-T conferences will be held from 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. for elementary students and parents. Parents will sign up online for an individual conference time that best fits their schedule. Information regarding how to sign-up will be mailed out to parents this summer.

The staff is looking forward to this time with parents. Teacher will inform parents and students about grade level standards and curriculum, the daily schedule of the classroom, pupil progress reporting, special programs, the classroom/school behavior plan, classroom expectations and other pertinent information. Parents and students can ask questions and discuss any specific individual concerns with the teacher at this time also. Students will have the opportunity to bring in their classroom supplies, get to know the teacher and become familiar with the room.

Howard-Winn is utilizing these conferences to better connect and build meaningful relationships with parents and students before the school year starts. Kids do better in school when parents are involved in their academic lives. Attending back-to-school conferences is a great way to establish that relationship. We will extend this relationship by also providing Parent-Teacher conferences in November and again in February. These conferences are a chance to continue conversations between parents and teachers, and to discuss strategies to help students do their best in class. Meetings between the parents and the teacher also let students know that what goes on in school will be shared at home. Parents are also encouraged to request meetings with teachers, principals, school counselors, or other school staff at any time during the school year if they have questions or concerns.

The first day of school for Howard-Winn students for the 2016-17 school year will be Wednesday, August 24th, 2016.

Early Literacy Law May Be Delayed
Iowa was set to implement new early literacy legislation for the 2016-17 school year that would call for districts to offer summer reading programs and potentially retain some third-graders who struggle with reading.  Amid uncertainty about funding for districts to implement these literacy requirements, which are expected to cost districts nearly $15 million, the Iowa House and Senate approved a plan to wait until 2018 before implementing these two key components.  Gov. Terry Branstad has not taken any action on the bill.

The extra year before the legislation takes effect, will give Crestwood Elementary time to plan for the rules and more time to understand the state’s requirements as additional guidance comes available.

Crestwood Elementary has already begun preparations to meet the new literacy requirements. We will be participating in a summer literacy pilot program sponsored by the Iowa Reading Research Center. The Iowa Reading Research Project this summer will be studying programs statewide to find out what aspects of summer programming are most effective at helping kids become better readers.

The study's results will then be used to help districts prepare to meet early literacy requirements. Howard-Winn is one of 45 districts participating in this pilot program.

With this pilot program, current third grade students who are struggling with literacy will be invited to participate in our literacy summer school.  The program will include busing students to and from school, providing students with breakfast and lunch, and providing students with 75 hours of literacy instruction.  Our summer program is slated to be from 8:00-12:30 4 days a week, during June and July.  Information about the summer program will be distributed to parents of students who qualify in the coming weeks.

Crestwood has been implementing the requirement of literacy legislation that were passed by legislator earlier.  These requirements mandate districts to assess students' reading levels using an approved exam. Crestwood Elementary uses the Formative Assessment System for Teachers, or FAST.  Using this assessment, districts use a formula for deeming students "substantially deficient”.  Students who are deemed substantially deficient are provided with additional instruction to help them gain literacy skills.  Students complete the FAST testing three times a year (Fall, Winter, and Spring).  The legislation currently “on hold” would require substantially deficient students to either attend a summer school program or be retained in third grade.  Schools are awaiting guidance from the Department of Education about retention and the exemptions and rules for summer programming including the curriculum, the hours of attendance, and what deems appropriate participation requirements.

Sara Grimm

Last Day of School
Wednesday, May 25th 11:15 dismissal
No Lunch will be served

If you have any instruments that you would like to donate to our band program we would love to add them to our collection.  We are also accepting donations of cash in order to do necessary repairs on donated instruments which need to be fixed in order to be playable.
Thank you for partnering with us on this opportunity to grow a love of music!

Howard-Winneshiek Community Schools Foundation

Recently the Howard-Winneshiek Community School Foundation has begun the process of awarding grants to teachers.  Teachers have been very excited for the opportunity to apply for grants from the foundation.  If you would like to know more about the foundation, I invite you to watch this short video: 

From Rebecca Ortner and the Crestwood Art Department--Thank you so much to the Howard-Winneshiek Community Schools Foundation for the opportunity to receive a new carpet for the art room.  This isn't any old carpet, it's a rainbow rug!  It adds so much color and light to our room and is a new favorite space for students to enjoy. The rainbow rug also helps reinforce our learning of rainbow order and provides circles for our youngest learners to have their own "spot" on the carpet. Thank you once again!

Series Books Build Motivation and Success
From Tami Foster, Title I & Reading Recovery--I would like to thank the Howard-Winn Foundation for the grant to purchase new books to use with Reading Recovery students.  The books are Reading Recovery leveled and are written in a series, with recurring characters.  Series books provide a foundation of background knowledge and builds anticipation for the next book in the series.

It is highly engaging and motivational for struggling readers to make connections with book characters within a series. Students learn how to deal with situations in their lives as they watch the characters develop and handle problems that arise in a series. Series books help build social skills and strong relationships, which helps capture kid's attention and interest and makes them want to read. Through this grant, Reading Recovery students will be able to read series books at their instructional level, which leads to success with reading.

Thanks again to the Howard-Winn Foundation for helping build reading success and for your continued support for education and our students!!

Howard-Winn Welcomed Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds

We were excited this week to welcome Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds to our schools to show her what we have been doing in the district regarding STEM and technology integration.
The Lt. Gov. got to watch a “Bee Bot,” in action, as the preschool students explained what they were doing.

She also visited a 5th grade classroom and talked with students during the STEM tour.


Why #RockOneSock?
Have you ever finished folding a fresh load of laundry and discovered you are missing a sock? We’ve all been there but we hold out hope that we’ll find it. Our goal is to take an everyday relatable situation and make a viral phenomenon by bringing hope and inspiration to National Missing Children’s Day (May 25, 2016). At Crestwood Elementary, we are joining the effort by asking that every student Rock one Sock the day of the Cadet Pride Carnival, Wednesday, May 11th to let missing children know that we have not forgotten about them. This is in combination with promoting compassion, empathy, and child safety in our developmental guidance classes. Let’s rally together and inspire one another join the #RockOneSock challenge and continue to spread awareness about finding missing children.  Mrs. McCabe-School Counselor

A HUGE THANK YOU to all of our School Lunch Heroes that work to prepare our lunches all year long!  You are AWESOME!!

Substitute Teachers and Associates Needed
Do you like working with children and helping them learn? Do you enjoy working in a high-energy, creative learning/working environment? If your answer is "YES" we need you! Howard-Winn is looking for substitute teachers and associates to work in our classrooms. In the absence of the regular classroom teacher or associate you would be helping students to learn subject matter and/or skills that are required for curriculum lessons and providing meaningful instruction for our students in their classrooms. If interested please submit a letter of application and a resume to: Superintendent, 1000 Schroder Drive, Cresco, IA 52136

Classroom Redemption Collection

The Crestwood Cadet PTO is sponsoring a Classroom Redemption Collection.  Students are encouraged to ask friends, neighbors and out town and in town relatives to start collecting on your behalf.  

Our Learning This Week.....

Each day the preschooler students journal in their notebooks with markers and crayons. Lately we started to discover several broken crayons from wear and tear. Thankfully we brainstormed a way to recycle our broken crayons and create new ones. The students built their fine motor skills by unwrapping the crayons, practiced their counting/1:1 correspondence as they placed broken crayons into a cupcake liner, explored with science as they observed their old crayons melt with heat, and built their literacy skills by writing/drawing about the process with their new “cupcake” shaped crayon. 

Transitional Kindergarten
Working together to build. Students demonstrating excellent teamwork!

The students have been creating special projects for Mother’s Day. They were able to cut, glue, and get some paint on their hands. We appreciate all of the family members that support us during the year.


Look at what we found this morning! Thanks to Mr. Adams and his class for letting us visit! 
5 day old ducklings

Why didn't our seeds grow?

Kindergarteners can draw stars like Eric Carle!

Using the words of a song to find contractions. How many can we find?

Using Pattern Block app to make new shapes

ABC Countdown ~ Animal crackers and Beach towel Buddy reading!

STEM Day ~ Creative master pieces at its finest!

We had math fact Friday on Tuesday.... And 13 of us moved to the next level!! 

Anticipation is building for STEM Day!! Listening to all of our options in the coding room!!

STEM lessons in 2nd grade

Testing parachute for flight time

Helicopter rotors at medium length...will it fly longer?

What if you combine all wind powered projects?

Using Chatter Pix for our animal reports

STEM Day: creation station at work

Student authors hard at work! Writing Rocks!

Another great Spanish lesson from our mentors!

Learning about Hariette, the eagle. She is on this MN license plate.

We are eagle experts!

Loving the carousel at Lark Toys.

Students loved being extra helping hands to one of Mrs. Shekleton's library classes. 
The first graders were learning about a fun iPad app called: Chatterpix!

Daily 3 Math cycles with our FULLY FUNDED DONORS CHOOSE PROJECT! We asked for two complete OSMO genius kits that could aid in our learning in nearly every subject of the day! THANK YOU ENDLESSLY to the generous donors who helped make this possible!

5th students using kinetic and potential energy to keep their cars going!

Not enough time in the day...freeze the work and continue the next!

Using STEM to create Ancient Greek labyrinths

6th graders using stations to learn about Ancient Rome

Chris Norton had an inspiring messages for students


May 9             Grades 3-4-5-6 Movie Reward
May 9             7:00 School Board meeting
May 10           Mini Band Concert for grades 3-4-5-6
May 10           6:30 Crestwood Cadet PTO meeting
May 10           7:30 All School Band Concert
May 11           PBIS Cadet Carnival
May 12           4th grade field trip; 5th grade field trip; 6th grade field trip
May 12           7:00 DARE Graduation
May 13          1st grade field trip

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