Thursday, December 22, 2016

Weekly Arts Wrap Up- HOLIDAY Special

If you are reading this, you survived the week before Winter Break!


 I would like to take this Blog moment to wish you all the merriest, the most artful and musical seasons. You are the teacher who shows our kids how to love art, music, theater and each other, through those six aptitudes that Dan Pink talked about in A Whole New Mind...
  • Design.. the design of lessons and tasks, of the classroom space, and of the thinking that you frame through your teaching!
  • Story..  your class gives students a place to express their story through the arts!
  • Symphony..  that "controlled chaotic noise" in your classroom is the symphony of students bustling, working, talking, singing, drawing, painting, playing!
  • Empathy..  we model empathy as we offer that ear to listen with, a heart to care with, and taking in those unexpected hugs you get when kids say thank you!
  • Play..  the best way to experience learning!  We ask students to not be afraid to play with sounds, instruments, their voices, paint, markers...  Creativity DOES take COURAGE, and kids build courage through play!
  • Meaning..  Finally, your work is meaningful, in more ways than one.  You are the teacher who models the skills within your arts strand, but you instill in our kids that the ARTS ARE ESSENTIAL.  Left brain skills are no longer sufficient for our students as they graduate..  
These six aptitudes that you continue to model for them will help them to be successful long after they leave us, and they have you to thank for that!

Collaboration and Growth:
  • January is a time for new beginnings!  We will be having a PD day on the 30th where I will be planning some great things for K-8 Music and Art teachers.  Please check in with your building principals to ask if you can attend in the morning.  Details will be sent when we return from break with specifics.
  • Also, for Durfee teachers, we will be having part two of our differentiated PD with other Durfee staff, and you will also have an hour to be with me in the afternoon.  
  • I would like to continue with the idea of the K-8 monthly department meeting beign held after the PD day so we don't have to reconvene on another afternoon.
New Year, NEW ME:
  • For Durfee Faculty, we discussed at the leadership meeting that we would like to instill a few key "resolutions for a solid month of learning"..  Here's what I would like us to commit to:
    • Ready to Learn: Cell phones away, hats off, hoods off heads.
    • Solid Attendance: Try taking CLASS attendance during your work period so that you have absolutely accurate data.  (VPs look at report and notice that lots of students who come in late are not marked present afterward, and thus labeled as cutting- taking attendance during the work period will not only eliminate this, but also allow you to give your lesson first, and then take attendance when you release the students into the work period)
    • To Pass or not To Pass: Students who ask to go to the bathroom, office or nurse NEED A school pass.  Use the agendas or passes.  Let me know if you need any.  
Evaluation Nuts and Bolts, Continued: 
  • Teachers on one year plans- set aside student work that might serve as evidence for your Student Learning Goals if you see students scheduled on a semester basis, as before you know it, we will be in semester two, and you may be switching student groups/cohorts/classes!
  • Teachers on one year plans- I have emailed you this week, to remind you that we will be meeting to discuss your formative collection of evidence after the holiday break.  Please make sure you have one to three artifacts per standard and have a status as to your work toward achievement of goals..  Can you invite me on the calendar for your Formative?
  • Two year planners- we will not meet until the spring, so you have more time to collect evidence, data and student work artifacts.  
  • I am continuing to make my way to you in January and commit to giving you feedback that is grounded in your specific content with commendations  and recommendations.  As always, feel free to email me if you would like to meet and discuss ideas!

On the Calendar...
  • Tuesday, 1/3: School Starts- Morton CPT 8:00, HLCS CPT 8:30
  • Thursday, 1/5: Durfee CPT Whole Group 10:45
  • Friday, 1/6: Itinerant CPT 12:30
  • 1/10- Durfee Band Aids Meeting 6:30PM, Durfee Faculty Meeting
  • 1/18- Durfee Department Meeting
  • Full Day PD Day- Monday, January 30th.
Also, teachers, please know that in January, you will have three Mondays with no classes- 1/2, 1/16 and 1/30!  Plan ahead!

Have a wonderful break!

Jackie

Friday, December 16, 2016

Weekly Arts Wrap Up 12 16/16

What a wonderful, whirlwind week in the arts across Fall River's schools!

  This week, I am inspired by our Band, Orchestra and Choral students' ability to perform for an audience at the level that they did this week.  The sheer amount of work, skill, tenacity and dedication it takes to do what they did this week at school concerts humbles me.  Driving home from the Durfee Winter Concert Thursday night, I just uttered the word to myself in the car, "Exceptional."  Our students are exceptional. They are exceptional because they achieve. They achieve regardless of their socioeconomic situations, regardless of labels and potential excuses. They are the exception to the rule.  The rule that tells them "You can't." Through music, they say WATCH ME- I WILL..  For our kids, music is a passion (modeled by our musical faculty), an outlet for hope and perseverance, a vehicle for expression, a celebration of life.  Here are pictures of the three groups from this year's spectacular performance...





The CB Classroom Arts Extravaganza!  Mary Zema and Chelsea Bolton prepared students for their annual art and music extravaganza this week!  The students from the Durfee Community Based Classrooms were simply amazing.  They sang, played bells and percussion instruments and WOWED the crowd with their passion and love for music and art!  Here's a picture or two from this amazing evening...


Learning Walk Information:





  • Last week, I shared the Learning Walk Report for K-5.  I hope you all had a chance to read it and take a look at the great work that is happening across our city!
  • Next week, I will share the 6-12 Learning Walk Report.  
  • These reports should fuel planning during the release time days/PD days with your colleagues when mapping, as this information provides you with the "landscape for learning" across art and music, K-12.
  • Above are some pictures from the 6-12 classrooms across the district.

Evaluation Nuts and Bolts, Continued: 
  • Teachers on one year plans- set aside student work that might serve as evidence for your Student Learning Goals if you see students scheduled on a semester basis, as before you know it, we will be in semester two, and you may be switching student groups/cohorts/classes!
  • Teachers on one year plans- we will be meeting to discuss your formative collection of evidence after the holiday break.  Please make sure you have one to three artifacts per standard and have a status as to your work toward achievement of goals..
  • Two year planners- we will not meet until the spring, so you have more time to collect evidence, data and student work artifacts.  
  • I am continuing to make my way to you this month and next and commit to giving you feedback that is grounded in your specific content with commendations  and recommendations.  As always, feel free to email me if you would like to meet and discuss ideas!

On the Calendar...
  • Monday, 12/19: Kuss CPT 7:30, Durfee Progress Reports Due at 3PM
  • Tuesday, 12/20: Morton CPT 8:00, HLCS CPT 8:30
  • Wednesday, 12/21: Durfee CPT (whole group) per 3, DHS Dept Meeting 2:45, SB Concert 9:15 AM
  • Friday, 12/23: Itinerant CPT- Vacation starts at close of day!
  • Full Day PD Day- Monday, January 30th.
Also, teachers, please know that in January, you will have three Mondays with no classes- 1/2, 1/16 and 1/30!  Plan ahead!

Concerts and other Performances!
    • HLCS- 12/20- 7PM
    • Spencer Borden- 12/21- 9:15 AM
  • Also, Terry Walkowicz has begun to visit 3rd grade classrooms at our Elementary schools.  Great work that ties science to music!

Thanks for all you do and have a wonderful weekend!
Jackie

Friday, December 9, 2016

Weekly Arts Wrap Up- 12/9/16



BMC Durfee Band preparing for last week's Annual Christmas Parade

Happy Friday!

In the Arts News This Week:

  • Art Teachers: I have ordered Avery Sticky Labels for your art work that will be hung in the K-12 Arts Expo as well as the Durfee Arts Festival.  I will send over enough for each of your schools in interoffice mail, pre-printed and ready to fill in.  There are 30 on a page, so this should help with tracking classes' work (one page per class, roughly).
  • Music Teachers: Gary Bigelow is planning to have some time to work with middle school music teachers so you can learn more about using technology to compose music in your classrooms during the January PD Day.  Stay tuned for more details.
  • COME TO THE MUSICAL!!!!  It's going to be SPECTACULAR!  Side Show is this Friday and Saturday at 7PM, and then Sunday at 2PM..  Hope to see you all here at Durfee!  Our teachers and students have worked so hard to make this an unforgettable show!  Congrats go out to Lara Beth Terry, Gary Bigelow and Matt MacMullen for working day in and day out..  You model hard work, talent and the creative process for our young performers..  Thank you!


I also want to take a moment to celebrate the energy and creative thought that goes into the work you see in these pictures from RPS.  Resiliency Prep School, our Alternative High School has forged a partnership with Artist Fitzcarmel LaMarre.  He is working with students on painting, portraiture and other art projects, but beyond that, he is teaching them perseverance, a love for art, and modeling courage through the arts.  Henri Matisse said "Creativity takes Courage," and Fitz models this with a smile on his face DAILY for our kids.  Thank you, Fitz- our RPS students ask to go to your class, and the relationship you are building with them is powerful.

K-5 Learning Walk:
Some Pics...








  • I will attach this document in the weekly email.  Please do take a look at the what, how and why of what your colleagues plan for engaging tasks in art, music and performance classes.
  • Next week, I will go through all classes from grades 6-12, and report out by Friday, December 16th.
  • In K-5 classrooms, I am observing some really great tasks that ask students to synthesize art styles from specific artists, mixing colors, cutting and recognizing shapes, singing with range, tone and rhythm, and playing simple instruments.  Learn (and steal ideas) from each other!  
Shout Out:

This week, I want to send a big SHOUT OUT to Victoria Arons at Greene Elementary..  Her Kindergarten class was pretty super duper awesome to watch.  They had read a book about what they called "mouses painting."  These "mice" jumped in paint and mixed up the primary colors, creating new colors.  When Ms. Arons asked students to recall what these mice made with their feet, they gave her the colors (orange, green and purple) and also said that these were secondary colors.  Students then began to paint with liquid watercolor their smiley face shapes they had drawn with black crayon (resist technique) and using their primaries, were able to make secondary colors.  Not only did Ms. Arons use a text to deepen the artistic thinking, she had the students using the vocabulary to talk like artists.  Wooooooot Wooooooot!!!!


Evaluation Nuts and Bolts, Continued: 
  • Teachers, just a gentle reminder to make sure you are taking a minute to set aside student work that might serve as evidence for your Student Learning Goals if you see students scheduled on a semester basis, as before you know it, we will be in semester two, and you may be switching student groups/cohorts/classes!
  • Teachers on one year plans- we will be meeting to discuss your formative collection of evidence after the holiday break.  Please make sure you have one to three artifacts per standard and have a status as to your work toward achievement of goals..
  • I am continuing to make my way to you this month and next and commit to giving you feedback that is grounded in your specific content with commendations  and recommendations.  As always, feel free to email me if you would like to meet and discuss ideas!

On the Calendar...
  • Monday, 12/12: Kuss CPT
  • Tuesday, 12/6: Morton CPT, HLCS CPT, 2:45- Durfee Faculty Meeting (IMC)
  • Wednesday, 12/7: Grades 6-12 Learning Walk 
  • Wednesday, 12/14: Durfee CPT (content specific- continuing the work from last week's) 
  • Friday, 12/16: Itinerant CPT, and Polar Express night at Durfee!  Friday, December 16th!
  • Durfee Faculty Meeting- 12/13
  • Durfee Department Meeting- 12/21
  • Full Day PD Day- Monday, January 30th.
  • And from Becky C: I'm in a Christmas play next weekend! It's free at 7pm Friday and Saturday 12/9 & 12/10 @ 95 Sagamore Rd in Seekonk MA!
  • And from Bob Beauregard: Tansey Concerts and other events: Dec 11 Providence Bruins  3:05 p.m., Dec 216-7p.m. Caroling at Adams House(nursing home).
Also, teachers, please know that in January, you will have three Mondays with no classes- 1/2, 1/16 and 1/30!  Plan ahead!

Concerts and Stuff!
    • Durfee- 12/15- 6:30PM
    • Durfee CB Classrooms- Music/Art Show- 12/14- 6PM
    • Morton- 12/13 6:30PM
    • Kuss- 12/15- 7PM
    • HLCS- 12/20- 7PM
    • Spencer B- 12/21- During the school day
  • The Talbot Band will be playing at St. Bernadette’s Soup Kitchen on Monday, December 12th from 5 to 6PM.
  • The Durfee Musical is held from the 9th to the 11th of December at Durfee in the Auditorium- “Side Show”.

Thanks for all you do and have a wonderful weekend!

Jackie

Friday, December 2, 2016

Weekly Arts Wrap Up 12/2/16


Fonseca Grade 1 and Talbot Grade 8 Students in Art and Music Classes

This week's Blog will be short and sweet!
Quick "Woot Woot" Celebration: We have been awarded almost $2,000.00 in grant funding for our 3rd graders to be able to participate in the NBSO's interdisciplinary project involving music, space and sound!  Thank you, Fall River Cultural Council!

Thursday Thoughts:
I would like to thank Mary Zema for presenting what she has learned about ASD students to her music colleagues at Thursday's PD meeting.  She brought a lot of information, strategies and care to this very important subject and we are so grateful to have her.  Thank you Mary, for your dedication and love for our kids. You share with them your gift of music, and help students to push their ability to move, sing, make sounds, play a beat and above all LOVE music.

I would also like to thank Becky Csizmesia for her work as she continues to facilitate with her colleagues as the break down the Link Up program for our elementary school students.  I cannot wait to see them perform on their recorders!  The RI Phil will be so proud!

K-8 Art teachers continued to work through mapping and setting common expectations for learning for students at all schools.  The K-5 art teachers are planning to build a dynamic map that will contain virtual lesson platforms for each concept, element or principle of design.  They are using Blendspace to do this and will be collaborating as some currently use the site regularly, and others are learning!  Middle school teachers are mapping through the grades with a focus on 7th grade.  They also worked on the Art Expo invite.  Great work.

The Band, Orchestra and Choral teachers worked together to build concert programs, discuss needs for their performances and prepared other details for their upcoming events- see concerts and musical dates below!

Evaluation Nuts and Bolts: 
  • Teachers, just a gentle reminder to make sure you are taking a minute to set aside student work that might serve as evidence for your Student Learning Goals if you see students scheduled on a semester basis, as before you know it, we will be in semester two, and you may be switching student groups/cohorts/classes!
  • Teachers on one year plans- we will be meeting to discuss your formative collection of evidence after the holiday break.  Please make sure you have one to three artifacts per standard and have a status as to your work toward achievement of goals..
  • I am continuing to make my way to you this month and next and commit to giving you feedback that is grounded in your specific content with commendations  and recommendations.  As always, feel free to email me if you would like to meet and discuss ideas!

On the Calendar...
  • Monday, 12/5: Kuss CPT
  • Tuesday, 12/6: Morton CPT, HLCS CPT, Band Aids Meeting
  • Wednesday, 12/7: K-12 Learning Walk with Becky Csizmesia
  • Thursday, 12/8: Durfee CPT (content specific) 
  • Friday, 12/9: Itinerant CPT
  • Polar Express night at Durfee!  Friday, December 16th!
  • Durfee Faculty Meeting- 12/13
  • Durfee Department Meeting- 12/21
  • K-8 Arts Department Meeting- 12/1 (after release time day) at Durfee
  • And from Becky C: I'm in a Christmas play next weekend! It's free at 7pm Friday and Saturday 12/9 & 12/10 @ 95 Sagamore Rd in Seekonk MA!
Sticky Notes:
  • Calling out sick?  Please call or text me before 6AM if you cannot make it in, and don't forget to text or call back in before 6AM!
  • From Shayna Morgan: Between now and the January 18 Department Meeting time, you will be working on something to implement into your practice, implementing, and reflecting on how it went. We will use the January 18 meeting to share and reflect. The Instructional Leadership Team will be meeting next week on the plans for the January 30 Professional Development day. Teachers will all chose another major and attend a full day of PD and then follow through with a release day and a “deliverable” for an additional 10 PDPs. The major choices will be very similar and I will keep you all posted.
Thanks Team!
Jackie

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Weekly Arts Wrap Up- Thanksgiving Week

We made it!!!!  Happy Thanksgiving, EVERYONE!!!!!

 Above: Durfee Performing Arts Teacher Squad      Below: Viveiros: Keith Haring inspired artwork

I am inspired this week by Chelsea Bolton, FRPS Art Teacher who has created a partnership at the Stone Therapeutic Day School with a local Animal Shelter Program. They just wrapped things up this past week. The Stone School had a furry guest visitor from Forever Paws come in with a member of the shelter, and read a story about homeless animals, followed by a Q&A about the animal shelter with the students. She also brought along her two Therapy Dogs, Tigger and Pax! The students got a chance to give the dogs a treat and walk them around the room. For the following weeks, the students worked hard at learning sewing and braiding techniques to make cat and dog toys to donate to the animal shelter.  Kudos to Chelsea for putting this together!  Here are some pics from the event..


Thanksgiving Thinking (One or two to chew on):
Summing these articles up, your work takes Collaboration, Curiosity and COURAGE to get it right for All of Our Kids.  You, the Fall River Fine and Performing Arts Team, teachers of art, music and theater, model these qualities daily, and I THANK YOU FOR THIS. 

Evaluation Nuts and Bolts: 

  • Teachers, just a gentle reminder to make sure you are taking a minute to set aside student work that might serve as evidence for your Student Learning Goals if you see students scheduled on a semester basis, as before you know it, we will be in semester two, and you may be switching student groups/cohorts/classes!
  • As mentioned in last week's blog, I am making my way to you this month and next and commit to giving you feedback that is grounded in your specific content with commendations  and recommendations.  As always, feel free to email me if you would like to meet and discuss ideas!

On the Calendar...
  • Monday, 11/28: Kuss CPT, Morton visits Amazon Fulfillment Center
  • Tuesday, 11/29: Morton CPT
  • Wednesday, 11/30: School visits
  • Thursday, 12/1: Durfee CPT (content specific) and Release Time Day- Meet at Durfee in room 82 after dismissal (allow for travel time) 
  • Friday, 12/2: Itinerant CPT
  • Saturday, 12/3: FALL RIVER CHRISTMAS PARADE at Kennedy Park!
  • Polar Express night at Durfee!  Friday, December 16th!
  • Durfee Faculty Meeting- 12/13
  • Durfee Department Meeting- 12/21
  • K-8 Arts Department Meeting- 12/1 (after release time day) at Durfee
Dismissal Times for students on 12/1/16 are as follows:
  • 11:00 a.m.: Durfee
  • 11:30 a.m.: Doran, Letourneau, Silvia, Stone, Watson, Kuss, Viveiros, Morton, Talbot, RPS
  • 12:30 p.m.: Fonseca, Greene, Henry Lord, Spencer Borden, Tansey
  • I have sent the agenda to you in an email.  In addition to the posted agenda, Music Faculty- Mary Zema will be presenting "Looking through the ASD/Asperger's Lens-Strategies for the Classroom Specialist."  You will become more familiar with what ASD is, and gain a better understanding of the ASD student as well as learn strategies for addressing classroom behavior and student needs.
Thank you and have a wonderful break.
Jackie