Upper-School Report Cards

Everyone is beginning to wonder, “Where are the Upper-School report cards?!”  Hopefully, this post will clear up a few things for you:

First, 9 weeks’ exams were given the 4 days before Fall Break; any students who were absent during that time had to make up missed exams this week.  Teachers then need a little more time to grade them and calculate averages.  As a result, we postponed running report cards for a few days until we could be certain that all students had time to complete exams.

Next, please remember that we have a new grading and report-card system, My Student’s Progress (MSP).  Teachers and administrators are still learning the “ins-and-outs” of this system, and it takes some time to work out the bugs.  This is the other reason report cards will be going out a little later than usual.

Report cards will be mailed by end of day Friday, October 13th.  Thank you for your patience as we make improvements!

How to Help Your Kids Be Better Students

We have made it through the first term of school, and teachers and students alike have gotten “into a groove” now. However, teachers across the nation have learned a few things about how to help your children be successful in school; in a 2012 article by Mari-Jane Williams, the Washington Post asked teachers in several school systems what parents can do to help their children be better students. Here are some excerpts from what they had to say:

1. Let your child see you making mistakes

Karen Stamp, a kindergarten teacher, said parents need to remember “that they are their child’s first teacher and their lifetime teacher…. Make mistakes, and let them see that you can make mistakes and laugh at it so they will think it’s not a big deal and you can move on easily,” Stamp said.

2. Use e-mail to keep in touch

E-mail is a great way to reach your child’s teacher without having to play phone tag, said Caitlin Liston, a sixth-grade science teacher.  “E-mail is great for teachers because we can have a record of a conversation or print things out to put in a student’s file as a reminder,” Liston said.  That communication shouldn’t be limited to when there’s a problem, said Tammie Ferguson, a first-grade teacher. It’s also “very refreshing for teachers to hear that their students are talking about what they’ve learned in school.”

Read more

Technology in the Classroom

One of the newest technological additions to the Upper School is a computer cart.  In the past, when project and research paper season came around, teachers would have to reserve the computer lab for their classes, take all necessary materials with them, and create seating charts; students would also have to remember to go to a different location and to take different supplies with them.  In other words, it often became quite a hassle for students and teachers alike.

This year, Upper School has a cart containing laptop computers which teachers can reserve and roll to their classrooms, and it is greatly appreciated by everyone!  Check out some members of the sophomore class, who recently used the computer cart to work on narrative essays in Writing Skills: