Monday, October 20, 2014

One of our students...

One of our students had an outstanding day at Castleton State College on October 11, 2014.  I was so impressed with this story, that I asked his family about sharing the article on this blog - they said to go ahead!

Here it is:  A DATE FOR NATE   Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

New This alerts from Parent Portal!

Setting Up Email Alerts in Parent Portal

  1. Go to the School Website and select your school.
  2. At the school site, click on “Parent Portal” in the upper right corner. Click on “Login”
  3. At the Parent Portal Sign In page, enter the username and password provided to you.
  4. Click on “Email Notification” on the left side.

  1. The next screen gives many possible report options.
    1. Choosing Summary of current grades and attendance will provide a single email summarizing all classes.
    2. Choosing “Detailed reports showing all assignment scores for each class” will provide an individual email for each class.
  2. Select how often you would like reports emailed.
  3. Selecting “Send Now” will send the selected reports once you click the “Submit” button.
  4. Enter the email address you would like the reports sent to. You can enter multiple email addresses by entering a comma between each address.
  5. Click on “Submit” to save your selections.
  6. Remember, you can change your selections at any time.
  7. If emails do not seem to be arriving in your email inbox, please check the email address entered into Parent Portal and check your “Spam” folder in your email before calling the school for assistance.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Oh Open House!

We had a wonderful Open House on October 9th, 2014 at PAML!  The halls were filled with families and there were a lot of connections with old and new acquaintances. Students proudly showed their family their classrooms as well as checked out the Book Fair.  We had many community organizations set up in the gym.

A special feature was the robot on loan from the Tarrant Institute for Innovative Education.  Students in Mr. Speers' room were controlling the movement, with video feed on both ends.  "He" was the hit of the gym!  

An additional hit in the gym was our international snacks!  This was the work of our fabulous kitchen folks with some menu planning with Casie Grossman, PAML's World Culture/World Language teacher.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Oct. 16th Student-Led Parent Conferences

Letter to Families:

Peoples Academy Middle Level

PHONE:  (802) 888-1401
FAX:  (802) 888-6488


                                                                                                                        October 10, 2014

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I would like to take this opportunity to explain a new practice at PAML this year.  Each student will be creating a portfolio to showcase their work.  At the start of the year they are creating goals and making plans as to how they will meet their goals.  Throughout the year they will be collecting evidence to assess how they are doing toward meeting their goals, reflecting on their growth, conferencing with their teachers and documenting their progress in their portfolios.

In addition, students will be participating in student-led conferences.  They will be sharing the portfolios with families at these conferences.  The purpose of student-led conferences is to put the students in charge of sharing their learning and to help them take personal responsibility for their performance.  This means you will need to bring your student with you on Thursday, October 16th, 2014.  If you are unable to attend, you can send a family member or close friend with your child so they have an opportunity to share their work.
In the traditional parent-teacher conference, students are often “third parties” to hearing about their progress.  Of course teachers and parents play a vital role in students’ education, but students must also take an active role in this area to maximize their potential for success and student-led parent conferences have proven to be a successful way for students to take the lead.

There are three components to the student-led conference: preparing, conferencing, and after-conference review.  All three elements require the students to reflect and evaluate their own progress and determine what they can do next to be successful.  In preparing for a student-led conference, students see how their strengths, weaknesses and behavior can affect them as learners, thus allowing them to take more responsibility for, and control over, their achievement in school.  Student-led conferences are an experience that can improve the communication patterns of both students and parents.  Parents listen to their students, encourage growth and discuss with them solutions to specific problems.  These conferences help build organization and self-confidence for the students.

 The teacher will circulate and be present for specific questions on issues that the students may not be able to answer. Of course, if after the student-led conference, should a parent desire a time to meet with the teacher, please speak with your students’ home team teacher.  It has been the experience in many schools across the country that students are able to share effectively and answer many questions about their learning in student-led conferences.
Please call the school at (802) 888-1401 to sign up for these exciting Student-Led Parent Conferences on Thursday, October 16th, 2014, and don’t forget to bring your student with you!

Thanks for all that you do for the PAML community!

Karen Weeks

·       Express positive interest and anticipation about the upcoming conference.
·       Listen and respond to the student.
·       Express pride in growth and progress.
·       Ask questions.
·       Be positive, offering to help in areas where improvement is needed.
·       Recognize that students need to develop independence in communicating progress – the teacher will be there to facilitate and answer specific questions but will not take charge of the conference.  There may be two conferences happening at the same time - the teacher will be in the background.

·       Can you explain this to me?
·       How did you come up with this idea?
·       How have you grown in this area?
·       How can you improve in this area?
·       How can we help you at home?
·       What was important to you about this?
·       If you could do this work over again, how would you change it?
·       Have you thought about future goals?

Friday, October 10, 2014

Monarch Butterflies

By: Abigail Boudreau
This year the fifth grade took care of Monarch butterflies.  They came to us as caterpillars, which is the larva stage.  Mrs. Ludington put the larva in jars with netting over the top.  We worked in pairs.  Each pair was assigned two or three caterpillars in a jar to take care of.  Each day we started off by cleaning the jars.  Cleaning consisted of taking the larva out of the jars and putting them on a piece of paper towel.  Next, we took out a small paper towel circle that served as a liner and threw it away.  Then we took a piece of paper towel and used it to clean out any poop or extra things the butterflies didn’t need.  After we had completed that, we traced and cut out a circle from a piece of paper towel and placed it at the bottom of the jar.  Larva eat milkweed so students and Mrs. Ludington brought in some to feed the caterpillars so after we had measured, observed, and recorded everything in our science notebooks we placed one milkweed leaf and our caterpillars back in the jar.  We did this every day and hoped for signs of a chrysalis(or pupa stage.)
          Eventually, there was a chrysalis!  We were all so excited.  You can just imagine what we were like when nearly all of the caterpillars were in chrysalises!  After they were all in chrysalises all we could do was wait, and wait, and wait.  
          One day there was a Monarcbutterfly!!  From then on we were always looking at or just being with the Monarchs.  They were put in a butterfly condo and ate fruits or sugar water.  Soon there were thirty-two butterflies in the condo! Mrs. Ludington tagged most of the butterflies as they went into the condo.  The purpose of tagging the Monarchs is so that scientists can track the butterflies so they can figure out why they are dying so quickly.  Another reason is so that scientists can figure out how the Monarchs know how to go where they go. 

Then came the bittersweet day when we had to let them go.  We tagged and sexed the Monarchs and then let them fly.  It was an amazing day that I will never forget.  Our Monarchs are now on a journey in which they will cover three thousand miles to reach Mexico for the winter.  Monarchs are fragile and their journey, tough.  Many die each trip. 

 Monarchs are amazing creatures and extremely important. They are pollinators and help our  environment stay healthy. Monarchs are dying, though. They are dying partly because of humans. Monarchs cling to trees in the winter to keep warm but when humans cut down the trees monarchs can’t keep warm and therefore freeze to death.  On the way to Mexico, Monarchs cross farmers’ fields. When they stop to nectar (so they can have energy to fly) sometimes farmers spray pesticides. Even though the pesticides are not meant to kill Monarchs, they do. Monarchs should be saved and we can all make a difference.

Monday, October 6, 2014

5th Grade Meeting in addition to Open House

Here's a note from our 5th grade teachers:

September 25, 2014

Peoples Academy Middle Level
Open House

Dear Parents and Guardians of 5th graders,
On October 9th, PAML will be hosting our annual Open House at 6:00 - 7:00.

Team Journey is excited to invite families of 5th graders to join us at 5:30 pm for an introduction to our 1:1 iPad program. We will go over the following:

  • iPad contract: What are student and family responsibilities? Accessories included (iPad sleeve, charger and cords, iPad case.)
  • Device overview: What will your child be doing on the iPad? Drive, Notability, PowerSchool, Team Journey Website, Edmodo.
  • Time Management: Who is ultimately in charge of iPad use time? Common Sense Media
  • Portfolio/Evidence/Reflection: How will my child be showcasing their learning?
  • Individualized iPad plans: When will my child take their iPad home? Tech Violations.

At the conclusion of our meeting, your child would like to take you through a tour of their iPad and answer any questions you may have.   This is an opportunity for you to become familiar with your child’s digital learning tools.

After the meeting, please be sure to have your child walk you through their day. They see many different teachers throughout the school day, all over our building (Expos, Lit. Ladders, and Experts.) Be sure to stop by the library for the Book Fair! Our librarian, Shannon DeSantis, will be happy to help your child select books for a great year of reading.

We look forward to seeing you on October 9th at 5:30 (the rest of the school’s Open House will start at 6:00pm).

Ms. Emerson
Mrs. Ludington
Miss Lindsey

PAML Spelling Bee - October 3rd

PAML is ready to send a team of super spellers to the regional spelling competition!  
All 7th and 8th graders competed in home-team spelling competitions. The winners went on to compete on October 3rd in front of the whole school for spots on the official team. The spellers included:
7th Grade:  Nate Belanger, Tanner Keene, Isayah Clark
8th Grade: Will Small, Kaila Trombley, Lena Boudreau, Lily Metzler, Edward Habeck.

All Spellers on Oct. 3rd!
All contestants did a great job and were very brave to step up and perform in front of all their peers.  We are very proud of their efforts!  

Regionals will be held on November 1st.  Lena Boudreau, Lily Metzler, Tanner Keene, and Edward Habeck will be representing PAML in this competition.  Kaila Trombley and Isayah Clark are our two alternates.

Mr. Griffin - our very own Spelling "BEE!"