Showing posts from 2017

Salem Students Giving Back

Salem students embrace community efforts to help raise the spirits of those less fortunate by taking the time to volunteer, raise funds, cook meals, or send a note of thanks.

Podcast: The A-B-C's of Standard-Based Reporting

Salem School District launches it's first podcast -- The A-B-C's of Standard-Based Reporting.

Parents of Salem elementary school students for the first time this fall received report cards without a single "A" on them. For that matter, there were none of the traditional grades we grew up with. Today’s podcast discusses the reason for the change and the benefits of a standards-based report card.

Find all podcast episodes here:

A Day in the District: October 2017

As students and staff settle into a new school year, we set out to capture activities that make up a typical Fall day across the Salem School District.

It's 5:30 a.m. and we find Custodian Alan Olivo cleaning on one of the newly-renovated entrances at Salem High School. The night shift has been hard at work for several hours washing away the remnants from the previous school day.

Over in the high school cafeteria, Barbara Schultz brings the ovens online in preparation for morning breakfast. The smell of baking muffins soon fills the cafe.

Over at Fisk Elementary School, Fifth-Grade Teacher John Gatsas gets a head start to his day. Usually the first to arrive, Mr. Gatsas relishes the quiet planning time -- while it lasts.

As the school day begins, Jay Hudson's woodworking students are busy building shaker-style furniture.The newly-created shop features more room, higher ceilings, and advanced ventilation systems providing a better learning and working environment.

Morning light…

Barron Has Gone to the Dogs

The Barron Elementary School is excited to present Hadley, their Therapy Dog to the School Board for their Focus on Achievement. Hadley has had a positive impact on students, staff, and families since she joined our staff last year. We spent months preparing to bring Hadley to Barron - informing parents and confirming any health concerns, training students and staff, slowly acclimating Hadley to the school and her spaces prior to ever engaging her with students. Hadley has her own student leadership club called appropriately, The Hadley Club. Students go through six weeks of training ending in a student led project with Hadley and younger students.

Giving STEM Programs an "A for Art"

Mike Ariel understands all the excitement around STEM programs these days. But that's old news to the Salem High School art teacher; he's been using these principles in his classes for years.
Read the full story here...

Game-Based Instruction Makes Math Fun

It's a crisp fall morning in Kristen Dacey's first-grade classroom. The usual buzz that starts the day has faded and students are settling into their seats. Everything is scaled down to fit 7-year-old bodies -- small chairs, tiny tables, and pint-sized laptops. At first it’s quiet as the students concentrate on their screens, but soon the room begins to fill with “dings”.

The "dings" are coming from an online visual learning application. "Jiji has made it through another obstacle.” Dacey explains with a smile. "We like to call it the sound of hundreds in the morning."

Read the full story here...

The Workshop Method Provides Real-Time Feedback

Ellen Tanguay might be a parent’s worst nightmare -- she’s teaching seventh-graders how to argue. In fact, her students will be practicing arguing every day for the next few weeks.

 “Wait. What?” parents may be saying. “They’re teenagers; they’re already experts at that.

 Tanguay hopes to build on this natural ability by helping her students learn the process of developing evidence-based arguments as part of her English Language Arts program. “Learning to build an effective argument is empowering for students,” she says. “It’s a skill they will use throughout their lives.”

Read the full story here...