It is hard to believe there are less than thirty days remaining in the 2012-2013 school year! The staff and students have been working very hard this school year. I am so impressed by the tremendous effort put forth by our entire school community. Thank you for all your support throughout the school year!
The first and second grade New Jersey Proficiency Assessment of State Standards (NJ PASS) and the third and fourth grade New Jersey Assessment of Skills and Knowledge (NJ ASK) are behind us! The teachers have done a wonderful job preparing our students for the assessments and the students rose to the challenge, giving their best effort. The assessment results should be back by the fall. A copy of your child’s assessment scores will be sent home as soon as we receive them. The third and fourth grade teachers, along with Mrs. Steele, planned and hosted a pep rally for the third and fourth grade students to kick off testing week and remind everyone to do their best. A special thank you to those parents and staff members who sent in healthy snacks and wrote motivational notes and to encourage and inspire our students throughout testing weeks!
Last week, our third and fourth grade students performed at the elementary school spring concert. The students and staff practiced throughout the second half of the year to prepare for an entertaining evening filled with music and song. Thank you to all the families and staff who attended the concert. Great job to our third and fourth grade musicians and singers!
As I reflect on my second year as principal at Lopatcong Elementary School, I feel fortunate to be part of a school culture focused on student learning and a commitment to high expectations, innovation, and collaboration. It is with great pride and excitement that I look forward to continuing to work with the dedicated staff, parents, and community members of the Lopatcong School District to provide the best possible educational program for our students. At this time we are beginning to determine student placements for the 2013-2014 school year. In the PTA newsletter, you will find a form to fill out and return to the main office if you would like to provide input for your child’s placement. The forms must be filled out and returned to the main office of the elementary school by Friday, June 7, 2013.
As the year comes to a close, please remember to check the website and district calendar so you don’t miss out on any exciting end-of-the-year activities at the elementary school. Have a great summer!
April marked the beginning of the fourth marking period and we are less than fifty days away from the end of the school year! We had a very successful kindergarten round-up and are excited to welcome a new kindergarten class to Lopatcong Elementary School next school year! I enjoyed meeting all of the new kindergarten students and their families at kindergarten orientation. Ms. Byrne and our elementary school artists worked very hard to put together our Art Show on Friday, April 26th. Thanks to the families who came out to celebrate and view the outstanding work done by our students throughout the school year!
As we begin the final marking period of the school year, please note that our first and second grade students will take the New Jersey Proficiency Assessment of State Standards on May 6th, 7th, and 8th. The third and fourth grade students will take the New Jersey Assessment of Skills and Knowledge May 13th through May 17th. Staff, students, and parents have been working hard all year to prepare for the upcoming standardized assessments. Please continue to help your child do his or her best on the standardized tests by staying positive and encouraging your child, especially on testing days. Make sure your child goes to bed at a reasonable time in order to get adequate sleep and has a good breakfast prior to taking the test. The third and fourth grade students will receive a practice book prior to testing. This will explain the assessment and provide practice problems for you to work on with your child.
During the week of May 6th through May 10th, we will celebrate Teacher and Staff Appreciation Week. Please take a few moments to recognize the excellent staff at Lopatcong Elementary School! As we celebrate the staff members in our building, I would like to recognize the 2012-2013 Lopatcong Elementary School Teacher of the Year, Mrs. Krista Wayne. Through her work both in the classroom and with staff development, Krista Wayne has earned the respect and admiration of her colleagues, parents and students. Krista exemplifies the characteristics of an outstanding teacher and leader at Lopatcong Elementary School. Her passion, creativity, dedication and love of learning show her true commitment to excellence, which she models and passes on to her students and colleagues. While at Lopatcong Elementary School, Krista has taught first and third grades. Currently, Krista teaches first grade and is the Science Curriculum Coordinator at the Lopatcong Elementary School. Krista continues to grow professionally by taking graduate courses in the field of education. Krista Wayne is a model teacher and truly an asset to Lopatcong Elementary School.
Please join us for our Spring Concert on May 21st. Our third and fourth grade students will be performing at 7:00pm in the Lopatcong Middle School All Purpose Room. Additionally, remember to sign up for the Amazing Pedometer Race, which will kick-off on May 3rd at the Elementary School. Mark your calendars for Field Day on May 30th. More information will follow.
I am looking forward to an exciting spring!
It is hard to believe how quickly this school year is flying by! We are already a few weeks into the third marking period. On February 20th, we celebrated the 100th day of school with various curriculum-related activities at each grade level to commemorate this milestone in the school year. During the month of February, I met with each teacher for data conferences. The purpose of data conferences is to develop an effective and efficient plan for students in need of interventions or enrichment, guide and support teachers in determining the instructional needs of students, and monitoring the effectiveness of the assessment plan and the strategies implemented to improve student performance. Meeting with staff members during data conferences provided me with the opportunity to review the progress of each individual student toward grade level benchmarks based on state and district assessment results. I also gained a better understanding of the specific interventions and enrichment opportunities currently in place.
On Friday, March 1st, as we celebrate Read Across America Day, please send your child to school with his or her favorite hat and favorite Dr. Seuss book. Our staff has many exciting activities planned as we celebrate the birthday of Dr. Seuss. Our youngest panthers, in preschool through second grade, also had an opportunity to meet “The Cat in the Hat” on February 27th. He reminded them of the importance of reading and writing. On March 5th, please join us for Kindergarten Fun Night! This is a chance for the students in kindergarten and a parent to participate in physical education activities based on the kindergarten curriculum! It gives you an idea of what the kindergarten students work on throughout the school year in physical education classes. The school is closed on Friday, March 15th for teacher in-service. The focus of the teacher in-service will be various ways to use technology in daily classroom instruction.
As we progress through the next few months of the school year, we begin to approach our dates for standardized testing. Our first and second grade students will take the New Jersey Proficiency Assessment of State Standards (NJPASS) Monday, May 6th through Wednesday, May 8th. Our third grade students will take the New Jersey Assessment of Skills and Knowledge (NJASK) on Monday, May 13th through Thursday, May 16th. Our fourth grade students will take the New Jersey Assessment of Skills and Knowledge (NJASK) on Monday, May 13th through Friday, May 17th. More information will follow closer to testing time. Our Kindergarten Round-Up will take place Monday, April 15th to Friday, April 19th. It will conclude on Friday, April 19th with Kindergarten Orientation at 9:00am in the Elementary School All-Purpose Room. We look forward to meeting our incoming kindergarten students. If you have a student entering kindergarten during the 2013-2014 school year, please call to make an appointment for registration. I am looking forward to the exciting things happening in the spring at Lopatcong Elementary School!
Welcome back! Hopefully your winter break was restful and relaxing. As we begin a new year, I hope it is filled with hope and promise for all! At Lopatcong Elementary School, we are ready to make 2012 a year filled with success, hard work, and dedication as we provide our students with daily opportunities to learn and grow.
In December, our kindergarten, first, and second grade students worked very hard to prepare for their Winter Concert. The Winter Concert was held at the Lopatcong Middle School on December 12th at 7:00pm. Our little panthers sang their hearts out and sounded wonderful! They also gave an encore performance that featured a few of the songs from the Winter Concert at our Winter Assembly and Sing-A-Long on December 21st. The students enjoyed the assembly and sing-along as well as the winter parties, organized by the PTA, on December 21st. We are especially thankful for all of the parents who volunteered their time to plan, prepare, and run the winter parties. Everyone truly enjoyed the day!
As a reminder on January 21st school will be closed. As the end of the Second Marking Period approaches on January 28th, look for report cards to come home on Tuesday, February 5th. Report cards can also be accessed through the Parent Portal. On Tuesday, January 29th at 9:30am, I will be holding a Parent Liaison Meeting in the All Purpose Room at the Lopatcong Elementary School. The first Parent Liaison Meeting was held in November. It was an excellent opportunity to discuss building initiatives and school improvement. I encourage you to attend if you are available as I welcome your feedback. The February Parent Liaison Meeting will be in the evening to provide an opportunity for those to attend who are unable during the day. Look for more information in the Virtual Backpack and on my blog, which can be accessed through the school website.
Finally, as a part of our character education program, we promote responsibility, which includes coming to school on time and being ready to learn after morning announcements. The bell rings and morning announcements begin at 8:00am. Children are considered tardy if they come to school after 8:00am. Students arriving after 8:00am need to be signed in by a parent or guardian in the main office. Please remember supervision begins at 7:40am and students may begin arriving at 7:40am.
As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. Thank you for your continued to support! I look forward to working together in 2013!
Welcome to the 2012-2013 school year at Lopatcong Elementary School! I hope you had a restful and enjoyable summer, filled with opportunities to learn and grow! With great excitement, I look forward to the new school year and seeing everyone again! As we continue to work together to maintain a school culture focused on student learning and a commitment to high expectations, innovation, and collaboration, many exciting things will happen this school year.
We will continue to use assessment data to increase student achievement toward the Common Core Standards and the New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards. Defining, implementing, and analyzing state, district, and school assessments that reflect the standards, will provide data that can be used to improve the instructional practices at each grade level. In the area of writing, we will implement the program Strategies For Writers, by Zaner-Bloser, in order to enhance instruction through writer’s workshop. This research-based program is based on the Core Curriculum Content Standards and provides clear, concise lessons, designed to enhance students’ writing skills. This program will be used as a part of writer’s workshop at each grade level.
Secondly, we will work to implement a “Response to Intervention” program in which students’ strengths and needs are identified through various assessments. This allows us to provide students with specific and individualized interventions and supports. We will continue to identify and implement research-based programs that provide remediation and enrichment as a part of this process. Students will receive this tiered, individualized enrichment and remediation during “Paws Time” which will occur daily at each grade level.
As part of the Response to Intervention initiative, we will work on creating a School-Wide Positive Behavior Support Program throughout the school year. A School-Wide Positive Behavior Support Program is a pro-active, team-based approach to create and sustain a safe and effective school. Emphasis is placed on prevention of problem behavior, development of pro-social skills, and the use of data-based problem solving to create and maintain a welcoming, safe school environment for everyone. We will be working on this throughout the year with the goal of implementation during the 2013-2014 school year.
Additionally, the fourth grade team will be semi-departmentalized this school year. The teachers will work in teams of two. The fourth grade students will have a homeroom teacher. However, they will switch classes and work with two teachers on the fourth grade team. One teacher will teach Language Arts-Literacy, while the other teacher will teach Math and Science. Social Studies will be taught mainly by the homeroom teacher, but may also be co-taught by each teaching team. Another exciting addition for our fourth grade students will be the opportunity to participate in the instrumental music program. We are excited for Mr. Crevani to work with the fourth grade students this year!
It is with great pride and excitement that I look forward to working with the dedicated staff, parents, and community members of the Lopatcong Township School District to provide the best possible educational program for our students this school year. I recently ordered a book from www.simpletruths.com entitled 212-The Extra Degree. The book states that, “At 211 degrees, water is hot. At 212 degrees, it boils. One extra degree makes all the difference.” The book shares all the ways “one extra degree” can make all the difference. I look forward to a great school year in which we work together to “make all the difference” for our students!
Lopatcong Elementary School Principal
It has been such an exciting month for our young Panthers! As a culmination to a week of Read Across America activities at the beginning of March, our staff created a story walk of The Lorax, by Dr. Seuss, throughout the school. Each classroom was assigned a page in the book. The students and staff decorated their classroom door based on their interpretation of the assigned page from the story. The finished product looks great! Students and staff filled the doors with colorful, creative displays depicting their page of The Lorax. Students had the opportunity to read The Lorax with their class in a unique way, visiting each classroom door to read the pages and view the vibrant displays, just in time for Earth Day and the Annual Art Show on April 20th. On Friday, April 20th, many Lopatcong families come out for the Annual Art Show. Ms. Byrne and the students created beautiful art projects throughout the school year that were on display throughout the hallways and in the art room for your viewing pleasure. Our very own fourth grade “docents” provided tours and facilitated the evening’s events. Thank you to all those who came out for an enjoyable evening!
During the week of March 19th, we welcomed our families who have students entering kindergarten in the fall! On Monday through Thursday, parents met individually with a member of the office staff to register their child for kindergarten. At the same time, our newest panthers met with one of the kindergarten teachers for a brief assessment. Each parent also had a few moments to speak with one of the teachers following the assessment. The week concluded with Kindergarten Orientation, attended by incoming kindergarten students and their families. During the Kindergarten Orientation, families had a chance to meet various members of our staff and community. Our incoming kindergarten students took a bus ride, visited our current kindergarten classrooms, and completed an art project. Welcome to our Lopatcong Family!
Just around the corner, standardized testing begins in May. The first and second grade students take the New Jersey Proficiency Assessment of State Standards (NJ PASS) on Monday, April 30th through Wednesday, May 2nd. The third and fourth grade students take the New Jersey Assessment of Skills and Knowledge (NJ ASK) on Monday, May 7th through Friday, May 11th. Staff, students, and parents have been working hard all year to prepare for the upcoming standardized assessments. Please continue to help your child do his or her best on the standardized tests by staying positive and encouraging your child, especially on testing days. Make sure your child goes to bed at a reasonable time in order to get adequate sleep and has a good breakfast prior to taking the test. The third and fourth grade students will receive a practice book prior to testing. This will explain the assessment and provide practice problems for you to work on with your child. As always, thank you for your continued support. I look forward to working with you in the fourth marking period!
We have been working hard to prepare some exciting winter fun activities for our school community! Please mark the following days on your calendar:
Polar Express Day – Wednesday, December 21st
Snowdate: Thursday, December 22nd (only if school is closed due to inclement weather on December 21st)
All aboard the Lopatcong Elementary School Polar Express! As we simulate a ride on the Polar Express:
· All students and staff are invited to wear your favorite pajamas to school for the day. Slippers will not be permitted.
· Students and staff will gather in the morning in the gym to listen to and discuss the story The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg.
· Each grade level team has planned fun and engaging activities based on the story. These special activities will take place throughout the school day. The activities are fun and engaging. They are also cross-curricular and link to the district curriculum and state and national standards.
Winter Concert Encore Performance and Sing-A-Long – Friday, December 23rd
· Kindergarten, First, and Second Grade will perform their winter concert for the whole school in the gym.
· The encore performance will be followed by a winter sing-a-long with Santa Claus.
If you would like an alternate activity for your child in place of either of these events, please contact the main office at ext. 3300 or 3400. We are looking forward to some winter fun!