In literacy class today we talked about a learning strategy that helps to make our brains sticky for information: asking ourselves questions about what we are reading and then answering them. Information is retained better when we relate the questions to our personal lives. There was a great article in the Globe and Mail that reinforced this work. It is available at: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/parenting/why-your-teenager-is-studying-the-wrong-way/article17766154/
Next year our report card will look different. We are changing the way we discuss student learning from "What percentage did I get?" to "What areas am I doing well in? What areas do I need to work on?" Each subject on the new report card will be reported on using stems that break the course learning outcomes into subcomponents. Examples of the stems for each course came home with the report card in February. Instead of having Language Arts listed with a percentage attached to it on the report card, there will be four Language Arts stems, each indicating if your child needs support to achieve grade level, is meeting grade level expectations or is excelling grade level expectations. In Language Arts, there will be a stem for reading, one for writing, one for evaluating ideas and information, one for speaking and listening and one for expressing ideas and understandings through a variety of media. In short if your child is an excellent reader but struggles with writing, you will see that on the report card. If they are excelling in reading and writing but struggling with using the information to create new ideas, you will see this too. A simple number like 75% blends skills into a lump that does not make sense and is more about ranking students than understanding them as learners. 75% does not help them understand where they need to improve.
I invite you to School Council on Wednesday April 9, 2014 at 7 PM where we will discuss the new report card and some exciting initiatives around technology that may see each of our students with a laptop device. We could use your ideas and input. Also, please take a good look at the fundraising information that came home this week. We are in the last order of the year for grocery gift cards and have been struggling to make our minimums the last few months. No minimums, no funds for our school. If you buy groceries, why not purchase the gift cards to buy them with from us? It doesn't cost you any extra but the stores give our school money back for buying in bulk! Also for Easter are delicious hot cross buns from Cobbs. The order deadline for both of these items is Tuesday April 8, 2014. Thanks for helping us work to make MidSun even better for our learners and improve our technology for learning!
Have a great weekend!