BEGINNING OF YEAR LETTER 2020-2021

 

Dear Parents, blush

I am delighted that your child is in Room 212. We all look forward to many exciting and rewarding experiences as the year progresses and I am so looking forward to meeting your little scholar!!!

I know this has been a challenging year filled with ups and downs and so many uncertainties. I know the children have experienced emotional and physical challenges. I hope that with the consistency of our remote learning this year, it will provide a little more stability in their lives. Parents, your support is vital to our success. I cannot do this without you. Please never hesitate to reach out at any time with questions and concerns or if you’re having anxiety about the year. All questions are welcomed! I know your families have overcome many challenges this year and I know that there are still more to tackle. I am confident that working together we will be able to move forward and have many positive experiences in the days and months to come.

I understand that this orientation packet has quite a bit of information but it covers all of the important aspects of remote learning so you will have a solid foundation on which to start.

I am going to begin with some Google Meets Expectations: yes

  • Please keep in mind that, because Google Meet is attached to your CPS account, all interactions are tracked and recorded. 👍

  • Mute your microphone when you join a Meet. 🎤

  • Always raise your hand to ask or to respond to a question or if you need to leave the meeting..do not shout out in class. 🙋

  • Use your “School Manners” - in other words, don’t swear, don’t share offensive imagery, and make sure that your video feed isn’t distracting to others. Be respectful of your teachers and classmates.

By “distracting” CPS means that if your household is busy, and there are a lot of people or pets moving around in the background, “mute” your video. 🌠

  • Do not wander around, eat, or play with siblings, toys, or pets during your Google Meets.👍

  • Try to always stay attentive and focused, not talk to others during your lessons, nor sharpen pencils...be prepared and have all of your materials with you and ready so you won’t have to leave unless it’s an emergency...then raise your hand. 😇

  • The chat box is only to be used as directed by the teacher. 😉

  • We will discuss and establish norms at the beginning of each Google Meet.👩‍🏫

       

During in-person learning, I will be using Classroom DOJO (if it is approved by CPS when we return to in-person learning)  to encourage appropriate behavior and to provide incentives and rewards. When we return to in-person learning, I will notify parents about our updated classroom rules and consequences in a letter home.

I will also be adding Remind 101 as a form of communication. You will receive more information about Remind 101.

 

Google Meets 😉

I will be sending out Google Meets invitations by email every morning at least 15 min. prior to class beginning. We will be following a regular class schedule-7:30 am to 2:30 pm..with lunch/recess from 11:30-noon daily. Parents will receive the invitation in their email and students will receive the invite in their CPS email. In the invite, I will have a reminder about the schedule and what is needed for the day. Attendance is required by CPS and will be monitored. I will be taking attendance every morning. Email me if your child is to be absent. Please try to be sure your child is prepared for class each day with the appropriate materials and working technology. Parents always set up your scholar for success! If possible, notify me in advance if you are in need of technology or tech support.

Students should log into their CPS emails to locate the link for Google Meets. (But remember parents will also receive the link at their personal email address as well.) Students will be logging into their CPS emails at this site only: http://google.cps.edu/ and they enter everything before the @ symbol for their username. I will be sending parents CPS emails and updated passwords for the children this week.

 

Google Classroom 📚 

Code for Google Classroom: 3fou2a3

All work during remote learning will be submitted through Google Classroom. Students will receive an invitation to their CPS emails to join Google Classroom. The invitation can only go to the student’s CPS email. When work is assigned that must be handed in, parents will need to upload it to Google Classroom and attach it to the appropriate assignment. It will be graded in Google Classroom by me and returned to you. I will then enter the grades into Aspen where you can log in through Parent Portal to see your child’s grades: 

http://parent.cps.k12.il.us/pc/default.aspx 

Occasionally, I may return an assignment for students to correct or redo just like in a regular classroom. If that happens, students may resubmit that assignment; always read my comments on the work. Remember you must accept the invitation to join the Google Classroom in order to be linked to my class. Parents, please do not email work directly to me…CPS is requiring that all work must go through Google Classroom. I will host a short lesson very soon in one of our Google Meets on how to set up your child’s CPS email and connect to Google Classroom with Mr. Brad Fisher, our technology expert. I know many of you used Google Classroom last year in 2nd grade and already have your child’s CPS email info.

Also, this year during remote learning CPS is requiring teachers to return to regular grading practices so regular grades will be entered into Aspen

 

HOMEWORK ✏️ 💻

Homework will be assigned every night. It is a very important part of your child’s education as it reinforces activities/concepts learned in class and provides extra practice in specific areas. Please take the time to supervise your child when he/she is completing homework, however, refrain from giving him/her the “answers” as this might interfere with the learning process. If your child is experiencing difficulty with an assignment, have him/her explain the directions to you. Ask your child to tell you what we discussed in class. Complete two or three problems/questions together and then encourage him/her to work independently. Use the extra practice worksheets on the classroom website parksroom.net to provide your child with additional help. Please inform me if your child is consistently experiencing problems with homework. 

Homework is expected to be turned in the very next day unless otherwise noted on the assignment sheets, however, no work will be marked late during remote learning. You will see “late assignment” on Google Classroom if work is turned in after the due date…however, I will not take off any points. Nevertheless, try not to get into the habit of being inconsistent with assignments. I do not want your scholar to fall behind and start missing work. I will notify you if your child is consistently missing assignments.

Lessons and homework will be posted on Google Classroom as well as on this Classroom Website. Please check weekly so you can stay abreast of your scholar's homework and lessons for the week. You will receive constant communication and reminders from me by email and with Remind 101 for which you will be signing up. You will always know what the lessons are, what your scholar needs to study, dates for assignments, assessments, etc. Please be sure your email is up to date in Aspen because I will email through Aspen and send notes/messages through Remind 101. 

Grading Category Changes as of 9/3/2020

Assessments (Exams, Quizzes, Projects): 35%

Assignments (Classwork): 30%

Homework: 10%

Class Participation (Asking Questions, Responding to Questions, Making Comments, Participating Fully in Synchronous Learning and Completing Asynchronous Work): 25%

 

READING/LANGUAGE ARTS 📚

This year, we are using a new Reading series-My View Literacy published by Savvas Learning Company. Students will have a consumable text where they will complete their lessons for Reading/Writing/Language Arts. They may also access their online resources at http://www.savvasrealize.com where they will choose sign-in and enter their information to set up their accounts. I will be sending home all login information this week with a few more details on how to use the website. Students will be completing many activities and assessments online for My View using this site. Students will also have the opportunity to meet in small groups.

During our first two weeks of Reading, we will be discussing traditional tales, students will be reviewing the concept of story structure-analyzing plot and setting, using text evidence to support their answers, learning similes, simple sentences, syllable patterns in Spelling, and learning to write a personal narrative.

Spelling tests will be given in class during the Google Meets class & Reading tests will be assigned online at the My View Literacy website to complete on Fridays or over the weekend. Students will have other assignments throughout the week to complete online as well on the My View website. Parents, during testing at home I cannot emphasize enough…. to please allow your child to complete the test independently so teachers can have accurate data about your scholar’s progress and what areas he needs to work on and what areas he’s doing well in.

Reading assignments, Spelling Words, Vocabulary Words, and skills that will be covered for the week will be outlined each week on our Classroom website. You will find everything you need on the website to be prepared for the week, to practice skills at home, and to stay abreast of your scholar’s lessons. There is a Links section on our website with direct links to apps and websites.

parksroom.net

Remember all work that is to be returned must be uploaded to Google Classroom. When we return to in-person learning, students will receive an assignment sheet for Reading, listing their work for the week and it will be posted on the website.

 

MATH➕➖✖️➗

We are continuing to use Go Math by Houghton Mifflin for our Math lessons. Our first Chapter is “Addition and Subtraction Within 1,000”.  Go Math is linked to Think Central http://www-k6.thinkcentral.com.Think Central as many of you know was our platform for Reading, Math, and Science last year. This year we will only be using Think Central to access Math and Science. Think Central logins will also be sent home with a little more information about how to use the website. Remember when logging in, the district to enter for Think Central is “Private School” and the school is “Walt Disney Magnet School”. More instructions as well as a link are located in the Links section of the class website. Students have a wealth of resources at their fingertips on Think Central. Please take the time when your child logs in to explore his library of materials in Math and Science. You will find the Math text online at Think Central and many supplemental materials and Math videos to support your child in each lesson. We may not have time during remote learning to use all of the resources for Math but please use them at home to reinforce the lessons and to give your scholar extra practice.

There is also a direct link to the Go Math book in this classroom website in the Links section.

Math tests will be taken online at Think Central. Again, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of allowing your child to test independently so teachers will have accurate data. Students will be assigned many Math activities throughout the week on Think Central. Parents and students will see scores for assessments and activities on Think Central in the “My Scores” section.

All assignments/lessons will be posted on the website. Remember all work that is to be returned must be uploaded to Google Classroom.

When in-person learning returns, students will receive an assignment sheet for Math and it will be posted on the class website.

 

SCIENCE & SOCIAL STUDIES🔬🌏

Students will be working in Science Fusion by Houghton Mifflin. The first chapter will be Investigating Questions…The Science text is online at Think Central. Our first Social Studies unit will be Mapping Our World. I will post links to the Social Studies text and assignments in the lessons on the class website because there isn’t a website that is presently accessible for Social Studies.

 

APPS/WEBSITES 💻

  • Think Central

  • My View Literacy

  • IXL

  • Reading A-Z

  • Teaching Books

  • Pebble-Go

  • Epic Books

  • ST Math

  •  XtraMath

  • Flocabulary

  • Jamboard 

  • Whiteboard.fi

  • Remind 101 for Parents

Usernames & Passwords along with a brief description of each will be sent home this week. laugh Also links to all of these (except for Teaching Books, Pebble-Go, and Epic Books) are on this site under the Links tab. The links for the CPS book sites have to be password protected and may be found on Google Classroom. enlightened

 

READING LOGS 📚

Students will also receive a Reading Log at the beginning of the month, starting soon, and this must be handed in at the end of each month indicating the books (and their genres) read by your child. The Reading Log must be fully completed by the child on time and signed by a parent to be accepted. There will be a separate letter and a sample Reading log sent home this week to explain this in more detail.

 

Again, I know this is quite a bit of information, so please feel free to contact me anytime with all questions or concerns.  We will review all of this information during our upcoming Open House. Please make a list of all of your questions and I will also be asking parents if they are already familiar with Google Classroom and/or have their child’s CPS email. This week, I will be able to provide you with a daily schedule, logins, and your child’s CPS email and password.

I am so looking forward to meeting you and your scholar at our virtual open house!!!! 

Thank you very much for your support! 😊

Ms. N. Parks 🌟

nmparks@cps.edu

 

Our classroom website is

http://www.parksroom.net

 

Google Classroom (code: v4b4kqv)

https://classroom.google.com/u/0/c/MTMxODA0MzcyNzM0