Saturday, January 21, 2012

Report Card Letter

January 26, 2012

Dear Family Members,

Your fourth grader is bringing home a report card today.  In this letter, I hope to provide you with a perspective with which to review the report card.

Massachusetts has a comprehensive framework of concepts, knowledge and skills which lays the foundation for our fourth grade curriculum.  These fourth grade standards serve to develop facile readers, writers, and mathematicians--the primary focus of the fourth grade curriculum.

The pedagogy used to teach these skills is a 21st century method that prioritizes communication, critical thinking, creativity and communication.  Multiple tools are employed including technology and texts of many genre.

Students engaged in a number of signature learning events and endeavors during the first term including:
Students were also expected to follow a number of learning routines to develop their learning skill and mastery:
  • Daily participation with NING (class social network)
  • Daily independent reading and weekly reading letters.
  • That Quiz math skill review work/paper/pencil math practice packets 
  • Lexia Reading Skills (twice a week during class)
  • Regular book group, project work.
During class time, students are expected to exhibit the following behaviors:
  • Ask questions when you need help or don't understand.
  • Email the teacher in the evening if you have a question or learning issue.
  • Focus on the assignment you're working on.
  • Listen to classmates and teachers during focus lesson and share times.
  • Participate in classroom discussions.
  • Use materials as they are meant to be used.
  • Collaborate with classmates and teachers with kindness and respect.
Enrichment opportunities are always available for students who wish to "exceed expectations." Those opportunities include:
  • That Quiz bonus items.
  • Free Write writing, research and composition in student ePortfolios.
  • Added reading and research.
  • Service learning projects.
The more I read and research about education, the more I realize that "Smart is what you do, not who you are."  As you review the report card with your child, I hope you will note that the report card is a snapshot of his/her learning at this time in life.  It's an opportunity to reflect and think about your learning now and what you want your learning to look like tomorrow, next month, next year and in the future.  Please discuss the following points:
  • When you consider your learning life at school and at home, is there any area where you can increase your effort so that you are more successful?
  • How can teachers and parents help you to learn more?  What can we do to help you?
  • What parts of school are challenging and frustrating for you?  Do you think that part of school life is necessary for your growth as a learner?  If so, how can you and teachers make those parts of school life more interesting and successful?  If not, why not?
  • What do you like to learn about most?  How can you weave that into your daily learning efforts?
  • What is your favorite way to learn?  How can you use that strategy to develop your learning?
As your child's teacher, it is my objective to engage and empower students in a learning climate that develops basic skills, concept and knowledge  as well as the 21st century/life long learning skills of  creativity, collaboration, communication and critical thinking skills.  Please complete the attached survey after you and your child have had a chance to review the report card together.  I will use the survey results to better meet you and your child's needs and interests in the weeks ahead.  

Thank you for your support and collaboration. Working together is what makes Team 15 such a strong learning community.  

Maureen Devlin
Fourth Grade Teacher 
Wayland Public Schools

Team Fifteen Report Card Survey - January 26, 2012

I am sending this survey in an effort to best meet your child's learning needs during term two.  Please note that surveys like this usually elicit a large range of responses including many responses that contradict each other.  Hence, I'll read the responses with care, and do my best to reflect the needs of all children in the classroom program, a program that responds directly to your child's interests and needs as well as system, State and national standards.  

Please return this survey by Monday, January 30.  Thank you for your time.  - Maureen Devlin

Family Member(s) Name:  __________________________________________________

Student Name:  _________________________________________

What teaching/learning practices employed this year have helped your child to learn well?

What teaching/learning practices employed have been challenging or frustrating for your child?  How do you think those practices can be changed to better meet your child's learning needs?

What would you like to see more of in the fourth grade curriculum?

What would you like to see less of in the fourth grade curriculum?

What other suggestions do you have to better effect your child's learning during the second term of the school year.