April 2014

 

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Dear Parents/Guardians,

Happy spring! As we enter the third trimester, and the weather starts to improve, it will be important for you to continue to motivate your child to do well in school. It is best to do this with encouragement rather than praise. Words of praise lead your child to rely on your assessment of his/her accomplishments, while words of encouragement lead your child to form his/her own positive assessment of his/herself.

Words of praise would be: “Great job on that assignment!” or “Congratulations, you got an A!”.  Praise is often delivered with opinion words and given when your child performs in a way you that would have liked them to perform.  On the other hand, words of encouragement would be: “Look at that project, I can tell you spent a lot of time on it!” or “It must feel good to know you worked so hard on that assignment.” Encouragement should be delivered using descriptive words and given regardless of how your child performs.  For example, if your child isn’t successful on a task, you might say, “I can see you are disappointed, I know you will continue to try your best” or “I can see that didn’t turn out the way you thought it would, what do you think you could do differently the next time?”.

Over the next three months, you will see we have many exciting activities that will be occurring at Tashua School. I encourage you be become involved in some of these events. When you are involved at school, it sends a message to your child that you value his/her learning experiences.  Even if you aren’t working directly in your child’s classroom, your child will know you are at school and he/she will feel important and know you think learning is important too!  We are extremely fortunate to have the amount of parent support that we do at our school. I thank you for all that you do to contribute to the success of our students.

“Nothing you do for a child is ever wasted…or forgotten.”

Garrison Keillor

Fondly, Mrs. Neumeyer

Excerpts from: “Parents Make a Difference!.  Vol.25, No.8

Class Placements for the 2014- 2015 School Year

Although the start of the 2014-2015 school year is several months away, we will begin our class placement process after the April break. This is a very involved process, as we will strive to create balanced classes at each grade level. In addition to balancing the number of boys and girls in a class, we also strive to create academically balanced classes. The goal is to create classes in which each classroom teacher will be able to meet the needs of all learners. This is a very complex process.

As we begin this task, we will keep the following goals foremost in our mind:

  • to consider the needs of all students and to maximize our ability to deliver appropriate instruction in accordance with students’ needs
  • to consider any unique needs that any student might have

The process for assigning children to classes will begin with the current classroom teachers who will meet together by grade level with our reading consultants, math specialist, our social worker, and me.  We will meet again several times to make any changes which we feel will benefit the groupings.  Modifications will be made as necessary, resulting in the final lists.

I would also like to offer parents the opportunity to be a part of this process. While it is impossible for me to accept requests from parents for specific teachers, you may write a letter to me explaining your child’s learning style and the type of learning environment you feel is best for your child.

In past years, some parents/guardians have made requests of current classroom teachers or particular teachers for their children for the next grade.  Please understand that teachers cannot honor these requests; there is no reason to meet with teachers to discuss next year’s placement.

If you, as a parent/guardian, feel that your child has a particular learning need in which we might be unaware, I ask that you inform me, in writing, of your child’s need.  I will then bring this need to the attention of our teachers.  This is not an opportunity to request a particular teacher; it is merely an opportunity to make us aware of your child’s needs.  No teacher names should appear in your letter.  In order to meet our timeline, I must have you letter by Monday, April 21st:  NO EXCEPTIONS. 

All of these steps will be completed prior to the end of the school year. Throughout the months of July and August, new students who move into the Tashua district will be added to the lists. Students who move from our district will be removed from the lists.  Occasionally there may be staff changes.  In any of these instances, we may find that one change necessitates another.  It is for this reason that we notify families/students of class placement in our August mailing.

Please remember that we all take this process very seriously. We want the best placement for each child at Tashua School and we will work diligently to ensure that we reach this goal. I hope that this information has been helpful to you.  You may feel free to call me at any time if you have any questions.