Friday, September 9, 2016

A New Start

Welcome back to all returning students and a warm welcome to new students! The summer has flown by and it is time to begin a new school year. I look forward to getting to know new students in Westward Public Schools.
Reviewing records, chatting with students and conducting assessments are a few ways to become familiar with students and assist in providing them with an appropriate learning environment. Please feel free to share any information that you have regarding your children to help in this process. Also, if you have any questions or concerns please contact me at : phayses@westfordk12.us and I will be happy to answer your questions and address concerns that you may have.
Looking forward to an amazing school year!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Happy Summer!

It's hard to believe that  the school year will be ending soon. As everyone looks forward to summer activities, it is important to include reading and writing during the summer so students will avoid the "summer slide." Here is a link to some resources for parents to use with their children during the summer: http://www.colorincolorado.org/article/summer-learning-resources-parents 
There are many great books to read at the beach, by the pool and on planes and in cars.
Here are some suggestions: http://www.colorincolorado.org/books-authors/books-kids
Best wishes for a fun and relaxing summer!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

ACCESS Results

May is such a busy month! Teachers are preparing for the end of the school year as well as planning for the next school year. The results from ACCESS testing (taken in January) should be available by the end of  May. Parents/guardians will receive a copy of the results with an explanation of how to interpret the results. ACCESS test results are part of the criteria used to plan instruction for English language learners. Classroom performance, other assessment scores and teachers' recommendations are also considered when planning instruction. 
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns regarding ACCESS scores or any other issues.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Spring Is Here!


After a relatively mild winter, we have finally welcomed spring. Many students are experiencing spring in New England for the first time with warm weather one day and cold whether the next. My classes have been discussing the changes that occur during spring and learning vocabulary that describes spring. Some vocabulary words we are learning include: hibernation, migration, daffodils, tulips, crocus, bloom, hatch, and day light saving time.
Follow the link below to view a list of books that are about spring:

http://www.colorincolorado.org/booklist/spring-celebrations

Friday, March 4, 2016

Conference Time Again!

Next week, parents/guardians will meet with teachers to discuss students' progress. Be sure to read the online report cards and any progress reports before attending the conference (available via the Parent Portal in IPass). Write down any questions or concerns that you have regarding report cards, progress reports or other areas of concern. It may be helpful to write down information that is shared during the conference. If you wish to speak with teachers other than the classroom teacher, tell the classroom teacher or contact the teachers directly. Conferences offer the opportunity for parents/guardians and teachers to share information about students so that students will have a successful educational experience.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Vocabulary

There are many ways that parents/guardians can help their children increase their vocabularies, especially their academic vocabularies. Academic vocabulary consists of words that are used in a school setting to help students understand what is being taught. Academic vocabulary includes words used in all content areas. For example, words like combine, add and plus are used in math and refer to addition. Compare, contrast and identify are words that may be used in other content areas.
Talking and reading with your child every day are two great ways to develop vocabulary. Ask questions about comments your child makes or text that is being read.
Colorin Colorado and Reading Rockets offer some wonderful suggestions that will help you increase your child's vocabulary:

http://www.colorincolorado.org/article/building-your-childs-vocabulary

I hope that these strategies will be helpful!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

ACCESS Testing

ACCESS testing will be administered to all English language learners between January 7, 2016 and February 10, 2016. Students will be assessed for English language proficiency in the areas of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Kindergarten students will be assessed individually and students in grades one through twelve will be assessed in a small group setting except when taking the speaking test, which is administered individually. Test results will be reported in late May or early June, 2016.
Please contact me with any questions or concerns that you may have regarding ACCESS testing.
Happy New Year!