Fourth Graders Participate in Space Mission
The fourth grade students throughout the district had a chance to be NASA scientists this week. Along with their teachers and parent volunteers, they worked together in teams to solve a serious problem. There is a lost space ship near one of the outer planets in our solar system. Using the Internet and a web-cam to conference with Mission Control, the students received data, performed calculations, and made recommendations as they try to get a lost spaceship home safely.
The teams consisted of cargo, navigation, and transmission specialists. They received information through a special web feed from which they calculated the amount of food, water and oxygen needed for a rescue trip. In addition the students used plotted coordinates on a graph to get location information about the lost ship and decoded messages that gave them clues.
The whole process was extremely engaging for the students. It helped them understand the real-life application of math and demonstrate their knowledge of the solar system. The students worked together in cohesive groups and were extremely enthusiastic. It was an impressive sight to see.
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Teachers Learn About New Ways to Improve Their Students' Writing
All district teachers recently attended training on a new model of instruction that supports writing across the curriculum and reinforces lifelong learning. The Six Trait Model of Writing Instruction and Assessment breaks down the complex task of learning to write into a group of teachable and assessable skills; ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, and conventions. This easy-to-understand, practical, and adaptable vocabulary is utilized as students across all grade levels engage in the various models and genres of writing. This model provides a framework that values the writing process. In addition, the use of literature helps illustrate specific traits, provides stimulus for writing, and promotes the connection between reading and writing.
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Forest Ridge District 142 Using Telephone Broadcast Service
In our efforts to improve communication between parent and school, District 142 has instituted a telephone broadcast system that will enable school personnel to notify all households and parents by telephone within minutes of an emergency or unplanned event. The service may also be used from time-to-time to communicate general announcements or reminders. This service is provided by SchoolReach, which specializes in school-to-parent communications.
When used, the service will call the home number listed on our records and deliver a recorded message from a school administrator. The service will deliver the message to both live answer and answering machines. No answers (5 rings) and busy signals will be automatically retried twice in 15-minute intervals. The Caller ID will display the number for the district office or your child?s school depending on which administrator executed the call.
It is important to know that in order for the system to be effective, your family phone number must be correct. This service requires no registration by the parent. All information and contact numbers are strictly secure and confidential and are only used for the purposes described above.
Kerkstra Elementary Named Illinois Honor Roll School
The following resolution was presented to Dr. Lori Wazny as principal of Kerkstra Elementary School by the Board of Education at the November meeting in recognition of their Illinois Honor Roll School status.
RESOLUTION IN RECOGNITION OF KERKSTRA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL ACHIEVEMENT
WHEREAS, Kerkstra Elementary School, Forest Ridge School District 142 has been designated an Illinois Honor Roll School as designated by the Illinois State Board of Education and that Illinois Interactive Report Card; and
WHEREAS, Kerkstra Elementary School was chosen using the following criteria: The Academic Improvement Awards recognize schools that have sustained an upward trend in test scores for at least three years and showed a 7.5 point increase this year or a 15 point increase in test scores over the past three years;
WHEREAS, Kerkstra Elementary School has made a 17 percent gain in achievement during this same period;
WHEREAS, Kerkstra Elementary School is an achieving school by having 83 percent of its students meeting and exceeding standards on the Illinois Standards Assessment Test; a full 10 percent higher than the state average;
WHEREAS, Kerkstra Elementary School has raised the bar for student achievement;
NOW, THEREFORE, Be It Resolved that the Board of Education of Forest Ridge School District Number142, Cook County, Illinois, does hereby commend the faculty, students and parents of Kerkstra Elementary School:
ADOPTED this 12th day of November , 2007, by the following roll call vote:
AYES: Members Staehlin, Kuspa, Hortsman, Doolin, Gron, Schramm, and Laycoax