Week of April 4

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Upcoming Important Dates

Apr 4 – Jumprope Pilot for 7th Grade Science Begins
Apr 5 – All Gorham Band Night at GHS 6:00 pm
Apr 6 – Early Release Day – Arts in our School day
Apr 6 – Teacher Workshop 12:15 (see assignments below)
Apr 7 – 8th Grade Book Talk 11:00 am in the Auditorium (Lunch schedule will be changed)
Apr 8 – School Dance sponsored by the 7th grade 6:00 – 8:00pm
Apr 11 – EICAL Rotations begin again
Apr 11 – 8th Grade Celebration Organizing Meeting 6:00 pm GMS Library
Apr 12 – All Gorham Chorus Night 6:00 pm GHS

Bob and Susie Interviews

As we begin the planning fro next year, we know that there will be some changes in how we look next year. We (Susie and me) have set aside some time to meet individual with each of you to discuss you ideas and hopes. Please check the GMS Leadership Shared Calendar to find a time for your interview with Bob and Susie. These interviews are about 20 minutes in length and they are designed to have a short,confidential conversation about your personal thoughts about what you’d like to do in the coming years. There will be no promises made during the meetings and we guarantee that no one, except you, Susie and me will know what transpired.

Early Release Day – Students

I would like to than Amy Cousins, Tracy Williamson, Megan Holden and several others for the work in setting up what I believe will be a great day of learning for our kids. The Arts Day has been a huge success in the past and this year has all the promise of being the best yet!

I also know that it is a very difficult proposition to coordinate theses types of days. There is an immense amount of planning and preparation involved from attracting the artists to join us for a morning, giving of their time, to organizing where the kids need to be at any given time. I know that Amy has requested that faculty sign up for certain rooms and activities to take attendance and to help the presenters with “crowd control”, please make sure that you have signed up by the end ion the day to day.

Early Release Day – Faculty

We have a quite a bit of work left to do as we near the finish line of the school year on ourProficiency Based Learning action plans. The afternoon of Wednesday will be dedicated to that end.

Health and Physical Education will be working with Sarah Drury all day;
ELA will continue their work in the afternoon with the assistance of Kate Gardoqui;
Math & Science will continue their review of their different assessments;
Social Studies will continue their work on their scoring guides;
World Languages will work with their counterparts at the high school;
Special Education will work in their respective content areas with regular ed teachers (Math or ELA);
Ed Techs I have seem some of the offerings, but I will check to get the complete list and send it out to you.

6 – 12 Committee Work

A group of committed educators from GHS and GMS have been working to establish guidelines for our work with Proficiency Based Learning. These meeting are held regularly at the Central Office after teaching all day.

Our short term goals, mostly for the remainder of this school year, are to develop a set of Skills for Life guidelines as we continue to separate out the academic skills and knowledge of the Graduation Standards from the daily lifetime skills our studnets will need to develop in oder to be successful long after school is done. As we are continuing this work, please feel free to offer any ideas that you may have regarding the assessing of the Life Skills, please see either Brian King or Meghan Rounds and offer your thoughts.

So that you can see the work of this committee and, perhaps, offer some insight on what has been accomplished, I am including a link to the work of the 6- 12 Committee here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Djc27b8hMTYJ1kmt7GGwRDz8AhRjyCZ5OK96H6ZJMO0/edit#bookmark=id.rtiz2sfq7cl9

Gorham Education Foundation (GEF) Grants

GEF’s Spring major grant cycle is now open!  We are accepting applications for grant funding up to $1,200.  The application will be open until 5:00 pm on April 30th, and can be accessed on our website, www.gorhamef.org, under the GRANTS tab.  Please read the guidelines before applying, and let us know if you have any questions about the guidelines or the application process.  We are happy to assist you!  You can reach us by email atgorhamef@gmail.com.  We look forward to hearing about the amazing ideas you have to enrich the experiences of your students!

8th Grade Book Talk

Lucy Bowers and Chris Record will be at GMS to introduce our 8th graders to their summer reading books. These readings are used on the 8th graders very first day of high school when they will be put into book groups to discuss their reading. This will only impact 6th and 8th grade lunch times as the 6th grade will eat at 11:27 rather than 11:54. Please remind your studnets of these changes.

All Gorham Music Nights

This week (Tuesday, April 5) and next week (Tuesday, April 12) all music studnets in the Gorham Schools will be showing off their skills at Gorham High School. This is a wonderful event for our studnets and their families and a great event to tie all of our music programs, K – 12, together. It really is nice to see our former students, now in high school, doing so well in an area that they all love. If you have the opportunity to take a night out, don’t miss either of these events. Aril 5 are the Band students performance and April 12 is the Chorus night. Both of these events are at the highs school and they begin at 6:00 pm.

The Future of Schooling

Just so you don’t think I have gone totally bonkers, and maybe I have, but I have done a lot of thinking about what schools will look like in the future. My thoughts become very scary, though, as I begin to see some of the applications of technology in other areas, and I wonder what that would mean for education!

Self-driving cars, what could they mean for our school? Would our staff have to fight for parking spaces with our students? Could parents just pack their kids up in the self driving cars and send their kids to school? Would there ever be  self-driving school buses? Imagine what that would mean for the students on those buses!

Brain imagining and sensors, could we just hook our kids up to all sorts of sensors that could tell us whether what we are doing with our lessons are creating knowledge? Could these sensors tell teachers what needs to be done next to improve learning?

Are school buildings going to be obsolete in the future? Will our students have classrooms, or leaning pods, that are environmentally developed to adapt to individual student needs?

So, all of these crazy thoughts reminded me of a couple of things. One was Rodman Philbrick’s The Last Book in the Universe, which i am going to read again because, if I remember correctly, anyone who wanted knowledge just need to take a pill and books were actually outlawed, and two, George Orwell’s 1984. And all of this was sparked by the article we read last week from Will Richardson and an article that Terri Dawson sent me this week about the future of schools. Here is that piece: https://education-2025.wikispaces.com/The%20Classroom%20of%20the%20Future

 

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