Dear Parents and Guardians,
Happy New Year and welcome to 2023! I hope everyone had a chance to relax and enjoy some quality time with family and friends over the break. The onset of a new year is a time for resolutions and looking forward. Teachers at Talbot are helping students to set goals for learning for the next few months, as we dive deeper into rigorous instruction. This winter promises to be filled with plenty of exciting learning opportunities designed to support students’ progress toward their academic goals.
January is also the kick off to mid-year assessments. Across the district, teachers will be giving assessments that will let us know whether students are keeping up with the class, or need extra help. The tests will also determine new areas for teachers to work on between now and spring. Students in Kindergarten and First Grade will be taking the Early Bird Phonics Assessment at various times between January 4-9. Students in grades 3, 4, and 5 will be taking winter NWEAs at various times between January 9-18. Starting on January 23, English language learning students will be taking the yearly ACCESS test. This test measures the domains of speaking, listening, reading, writing and comprehension in English.
Helping Your Child with Test Taking Skills
There are many ways to help your child be prepared for taking tests at school. The following is a list of do’s and don’ts adapted from the US Department of Education website:
- Do talk to your children about testing. Explain that tests are yardsticks that teachers, schools, school districts and even states use to measure what and how they teach and how well students are learning what is taught. Most tests are designed to measure students' progress in any subject. The results tell the teacher and students whether they are keeping up with the class, need extra help or are ahead of other students.
- Tell your children that occasionally, they will take "standardized" tests. Explain that these tests use the same standards to measure student performance across the state or even across the country. Every student takes the same test according to the same rules. This makes it possible to measure each student's performance against that of others.
- Do encourage your children. Praise them for the things that they do well. If your children feel good about themselves, they will do their best on a test. Children who are afraid of failing are more likely to become anxious when taking tests and more likely to make mistakes.
- Do make sure that your children attend school regularly. Remember, tests reflect children's overall achievement. The more effort and energy your children put into learning, the more likely it is that they will do well on tests.
- Do provide a quiet, comfortable place for studying at home and make sure that your children are well rested on school days and especially on the day of a test. Children who are tired are less able to pay attention in class or to handle the demands of a test.
- Do provide books and magazines for your children to read at home. By reading new materials, a child will learn new words that might appear on a test. Ask your children's teacher for lists of books for outside reading or get suggestions from your local library. Also, ask the teacher to suggest activities for you and your children to do at home to help prepare for tests and to improve your children's understanding of schoolwork.
Source; US Department of Education, https://www2.ed.gov/parents/academic/help/succeed/part9.html
New PK Teacher
I am happy to announce that Ms. Bakhita Saabino will be taking over for Ms. Julie Soule as the PK teacher in Room 109 starting on January 10. We are sad that Ms. Julie had to leave Talbot mid-year, but thrilled that Ms. Bakhita will be stepping into the position. Previously, Ms. Bakhita worked for many years at Talbot as the PK Ed Tech in Room 109 and is very familiar with the curriculum, schedule and routines of Talbot's PK program.
Sparkle Day- January 13
Every now and then we like to brighten up the long winter days by having Spirit Days at school. This month the Spirit Day will be on Friday, January 13 and the theme is Sparkle Day! Students and staff are invited to where anything that sparkles on that day.
Parent Night- January 18
As a way to support our parent engagement goals of our School Success Plan, Talbot School will be hosting Parent Night on January 18th. Parent Night (formerly known as Curriculum Night), was something we held each year before Covid. The purpose of this parent only event is to inform parents about the curriculum and instruction that is happening at your child’s grade level. Parent Night will be January 18 from 4:00-5:00. Pk-2 classrooms will have formal presentations from 4:00-4:30 in their grade level pods, and grades 3-5 classroom teachers will do presentations from 4:30-5:00. We hope to see you there!
This year at Talbot school we are implementing a new parent engagement event called Homework Diner. The Homework Diner is for students in grades 1-5 and is when students and their parents/guardians can come to school to work with staff on homework, then join together to share a meal. Our third Homework Diner is scheduled for January 31 and the meal will be provided from Wayside Kitchen. There will be information shared at this event from our math coaches, Julie Rosenberg and Sarah Rasmussen, about how to support your child with math at home. Transportation will be available at a few identified bus stops, and all students must attend with an adult. We hope to provide interpretation for those who would like support with language.
I continue to be thankful for the fantastic job that our staff, teachers, students, and parents are doing educating our students each and every day. At Talbot, parents and teachers form a tremendous team, working together to support our students and provide them with the tools they need to be successful at school and in life. Thank you again for your continued support as we kick off the new year together. Please feel free to reach out to me if you ever have questions about how we can best support your student(s) at Talbot School (874-8210).
Mrs. Ann Hanna
Special Reminder- Martin Luther King, Jr Day -There is no school on Monday, January 16, for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
January 4: Early Release, 1:10
January 4-8: Early Bird Phonics Assessments, Grades K and 1, schedule varies
January 9-18: NWEA testing in grades 3, 4, 5, schedule varies
January 11: Early Release, 1:10
January 13- School Spirit Day-Sparkle Day!
January 16: Martin Luther King Day, NO SCHOOL
January 18: Early Release, 1:10
January 18: Parent Night, 4:00-5:00
January 23: ACCESS Testing Begins, schedule varies
January 25: Early Release, 1:10
January 26: Coffee with the Principal, 7:30-8:00 am
January 27: Happy Wheels Night, 5:15-7:15, PTO
January 31: Homework Diner, 4:30-6:00