Thursday, April 27, 2017

Week of April 24, 2017

Thursday Folder Fliers:
Parent Placement Requests:
As a reminder, all parent placement requests for the 2017-18 school year are due tomorrow. Please remember that we are seeking information regarding your student's specific needs. Specific teacher requests are not accepted. Please address all placement requests to kirsten.bloomfield@dcsdk12.org or via written letter. 

Staff Appreciation:
Next week is Staff Appreciation Week. We have postcards in the office that you can use to write a note of appreciation to any staff member at Iron Horse. Please stop in and write a note of thanks to your favorite staff members! 

Jay Day:
Students and staff are collecting canned and non-perishable items for the Parker Task Force to honor Jay Day. This community project will be sponsored by #TheJayDayProject which is a movement that started after the loss of Courtney Sidenar's (Iron Horse's EA) nine-year old son, Jaydon, two years ago.  As a means to commemorate his memory, Courtney started by setting aside every 16th of the month to celebrate “Jay Day.”  This month Iron Horse Elementary staff, students and families will assist in spreading that kindness beyond the walls of Iron Horse by collecting items for the Parker Task Force. We are having a friendly competition between Iron Horse and Cherokee Trail. Please bring your items to your classroom. The school with the most items will win a popsicle party. 

Thinking Maps:
This week's map is our final map, the bridge map. The Bridge Map focuses on identifying similarities between relationships. Here are some student samples of bridge maps:
3rd Grade Bridge Map

Kindergarten Bridge Map
5th Grade Bridge Map





















Here is a link to the parent memo

End of the Year Movie Night:
Please join us for a great night watching Sing! in the Gym. The doors will open at 5:30 and the movie will start at 6:00pm, completing around 7:45pm. Entrance to the event is free. PTO will be serving popcorn and drinks for a small fee (cash or checks only). Adults(over 18) must be in attendance with each student. 

Lightning Dismissal Protocols: 
Safety is the number one priority of the Douglas County School District. During severe weather, DCSD schools will take actions to ensure the wellbeing of student and staff. The following protocols have been developed by district personnel for lightning dismissals and will be used by Iron Horse effective immediately:
  • DCSD is following CHSAA's lightening guidelines, which state that outdoor activities will be suspended and personnel moved indoors when lightning is within a 6-mile radius. Activities will remain suspended until there is no longer lightning within a 6-mile radius for 15 minutes. 
  • Parents/Guardians or other adults over the age of 18, who have been given permission in Infinite Campus, may pick up their children/younger sibling during a lightning delay at their own risk.
  • Siblings under the age of 18 coming to pick up a younger sibling will be asked to stay in the building and will NOT be released until it is safe. 
  • Students who walk will be released when it is considered to be safe at the school site - when lightning is more that 6 miles away for 15 minutes. 
  • Parents/Guardians/Siblings over 18 will sign out their student in the classroom.
  • School Messenger will be used to inform parents/guardians of a delayed dismissal. Please make sure that your information is up-to-date in your Parent Portal, as this is where school messenger pulls your contact information from. This is also where we look for those people to whom you have given permission to pick up your student(s). 
Learning Commons: 
We are beginning a transformation of our Learning Commons and are looking for donations of supplies. If you or your students have outgrown these items, we would love to take them off your hands! We are in need of the following items:
  • Legos - bricks, people, and assorted items
  • Lego boards to build on
  • Lincoln Logs
  • K'Nex sets
  • Plastic Gear Sets
  • Golf Tees - all colors, wood or plastic
  • Pegboard
If you are able to donate any items, please bring them to the office. Thank you for your support!

Upcoming Events:
April 28: All Parent Placement Requests for 2017-18 are due - see above for details
May 3-5: Outdoor Ed for 5th Graders
May 8: NO SCHOOL FOR 5th GRADE ONLY
May 8-12: Iron Horse Depot (SSN Store)
May 10: SAC Meeting - 4:00-5:00pm in the Learning Commons
May 10: Kindergarten Night for Incoming Kindergartners - 6:00-6:30pm in the Learning Commons
May 11: Muffins for Moms in the cafeteria
May 17: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
May 19: End of the Year Movie Night in the Gym - We will be watching SING! at PG movie
May 29: NO SCHOOL
June 2: Field Day and Last Day of School

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Week of April 17, 2017

Thursday Folder Fliers:

Thinking Map of the Week:
This week, students were introduced to the Multi-Flow Map. This map shows cause and effect. Here are some student samples:
4th Grade Multi Flow Map

3rd Grade Multi Flow Map













Here is the link to the parent letter.

Learning Commons: 
We are beginning a transformation of our Learning Commons and are looking for donations of supplies. If you or your students have outgrown these items, we would love to take them off your hands! We are in need of the following items:
  • Legos - bricks, people, and assorted items
  • Lego boards to build on
  • Lincoln Logs
  • K'Nex sets
  • Plastic Gear Sets
  • Golf Tees - all colors, wood or plastic
  • Pegboard
If you are able to donate any items, please bring them to the office. Thank you for your support!

Watch Dog Dads: 
We need you! We have lots of shredding that needs to be done and we could use your help. Please use the sign up genius on our webpage to sign up: Watch Dog Dad's Link to Sign Up


Upcoming Events:
April 21: NO SCHOOL
April 28: All Parent Placement Requests for 2017-18 are Due - see previous blog post for details
May 3-5: Outdoor Ed for 5th Graders
May 8: NO SCHOOL FOR 5th GRADE ONLY
May 8-12: Iron Horse Depot (SSN Store)
May 10: SAC Meeting - 4:00-5:00pm in the Learning Commons
May 10: Kindergarten Night for Incoming Kindergartners - 6:00-6:30pm in the Learning Commons
May 11: Muffins for Moms
May 17: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
May 19: End of the Year Movie Night - More Details to Come!
May 29: NO SCHOOL
June 2: Field Day and Last Day of School

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Week of April 10, 2017



Thursday Folder Fliers:




Father/Daughter Dance:
Thank you to Cindy Fazio-Cramer and Becki Gonzales for organizing an amazing event for our girls. The girls had a fantastic time with their fathers under the stars. 

Thinking Map of the Week:
This week's focus is on the Flow Map. Flow maps are used to show the sequence and/or order of a process. Here is the link to the parent memo on flow maps.  Here are some student examples of the flow map:
Kindergarten Flow Map - Pumpkin, Pumpkin


   
3rd Grade Flow Map - Butterfly Life Cycle







5th Grade Flow Map
Learning Commons: 
We are beginning a transformation of our Learning Commons and are looking for donations of supplies. If you or your students have outgrown these items, we would love to take them off your hands! We are in need of the following items:

  • Legos - bricks, people, and assorted items
  • Lego boards to build on
  • Lincoln Logs
  • K'Nex sets
  • Plastic Gear Sets
  • Golf Tees - all colors, wood or plastic
  • Pegboard
I am also looking for someone who has graphic/painting skills who could paint a couple of large quotes on the walls. I will supply the paint and quote - you supply the talent! 😊

If you are able to donate any items, please bring them to the office. Thank you for your support!

School Accountability Committee: 
We are looking for members for our SAC committee. If you would like to be a part of a group of parents who support the school and provide feedback on the school budget and priorities, this is the group for you! If you are interested in serving as a board member for the 2017-18 school year, please submit a paragraph about yourself by August 18th to kirsten.bloomfield@dcsdk12.org. This information will be provided to voters at our September meeting during which we will hold our elections. 


Red Apple Spring Drive:
There are over 300 million kids living without shoes everyday and we want to help! Our spring drive will run from April 17-May 17th. We are accepting donations of clean clothing, toys and stuffed animals, towel, sheets and other household textiles, belts, purses, and backpacks, and SHOES! Please help us with our drive by donating your items to our "little red house" near the parking lot. 

Changes to RevTrack:
Your School District Web Store is getting a new look! Soon, you will be able to log on to the Web Store from any mobile device and make a payment. There is no need to download an app, just visit the Web Store through the internet browser on your mobile device. It’s that easy. 

In addition to the mobile-friendly update, you will enjoy the following features: 

    Quick, two-step checkout process 
    Convenient login window 
    User-friendly design 
    And more! 

Keep an eye out for more updates about the Web Store. We are excited to help you save more time!


Upcoming Events:
April 19: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
April 20: McTeacher Night at McDonald's on Main Street - 5-8:00pm
April 21: NO SCHOOL
April 28: All Parent Placement Requests for 2017-18 are Due - see previous blog post for details
May 3-5: Outdoor Ed for 5th Graders
May 8: NO SCHOOL FOR 5th GRADE ONLY
May 8-12: Iron Horse Depot (SSN Store)
May 10: SAC Meeting - 4:00-5:00pm in the Learning Commons
May 10: Kindergarten Night for Incoming Kindergartners - 6:00-6:30pm in the Learning Commons
May 17: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
May 19: End of the Year Movie Night - More Details to Come!
May 29: NO SCHOOL

June 2: Field Day and Last Day of School

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Week of April 3, 2017

Thursday Folder Fliers:


Welcome Back! 
We hope you had a wonderful spring break!

Parking Lot Reminder:
As a reminder, we will be closing the south entrance to the gravel lot daily from 3:25-3:45pm for safety purposes. Cars will not be able to enter or exit during this time. 

Thinking Maps:
This week, we are focusing on Brace Maps. Brace Maps help learners understand the relationship between a whole physical object and its parts. Here are some brace maps from our students:
5th Grade Brace Map

1st/2nd Grade Brace Map




2nd Grade Brace Map






4th Grade Brace Map











Kindergarten Brace Map






Kindergarten Brace Map

1st Grade Brace Map










Here is the parent memo regarding Brace Maps.

Guest Speaker at Cimarron:
Monday, May 1st from 7:00-9:00pm - Leonard Sax, M.D., has built an international reputation as an expert in child and adolescent development. He has spoken at schools, colleges, and communities across the country and around the world, and been a guest on Today, CNN, PBS, Fox News, NPR, and the BBC. He is the author of three best-selling books for parents: Why Gender MattersBoys Adrift, and Girls on the Edge. He will be discussing social media and online behavior. The cost to attend is $5.00 per person. Please see the flyer above for more information. 

Upcoming Events:
April 7: Daddy/Daughter Dance - 7-8:00pm in the Gym
April 12: SAC Meeting - 4:00-5:00pm in the Learning Commons
April 19: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
April 20: McTeacher Night at McDonald's on Main Street - 5-8:00pm
April 21: NO SCHOOL
April 28: All Parent Placement Requests for 2017-18 are Due - see previous blog post for details
May 3-5: Outdoor Ed for 5th Graders
May 10: SAC Meeting - 4:00-5:00pm in the Learning Commons
May 10: Kindergarten Night for Incoming Kindergartners - 6:00-6:30pm in the Learning Commons
May 17: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
May 19: End of the Year Movie Night - More Details to Come!
May 29: NO SCHOOL
June 2: Field Day and Last Day of School

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Week of March 13, 2017

Thursday Folder Fliers:

Please view the PTO Newsletter for March HERE.
If you would like to order school supplies for next year, please see the flyer

Extreme Fire Danger: 
Currently, the Parker area is under Stage 2 fire restrictions. This means that open burning of any kind, fireworks, campfires or fires in chimineas, portable fireplaces or pits are prohibited. Fines for violation of this restriction are up to $1000.00. For more information, please visit: www.dcsheriff.net

Thinking Maps:
This week students and staff focused on the Tree Map. A tree map is used to show visual thinking in relation to classifying and grouping items. Here are some examples of student maps from this week:


2nd Grade Class Tree Map on Transition Words
4th Grade Tree Map with Beanie Babies
5th Grade Tree Map on Equal Fractions


















Kindergarten Tree Map on Shapes




5th Grade Tree Map on the Food Pyramid
3rd Grade Map on The Miraculous
Journey of Edward Tulane


















Here is the parent memo regarding Tree Maps

Parking Lot:
In an effort to continue to create a safe environment for students, families, and staff in our parking lot, the gravel parking lot south entrance will be blocked at approximately 3:25 every day with a chain and cones. This means that traffic will not be able to enter or exit the lot from 3:25-3:45pm. All traffic will exit at the north side where a staff member is available to direct traffic.

Class Placement Process for 2017-18 School Year:
Creating balanced class lists that meet the needs of all students is a difficult endeavor. This process involves hours of thoughtful dialogue between classroom teachers, administrators, and other staff members. We take this responsibility very seriously. The process for creating class lists is as follows:

  • Teachers identify the social and academic needs of every student. They refer to existing data and record pertinent information to assist them in their decision-making. 
  • Teachers then meet as a grade level to form class lists that are balanced. Balanced classrooms meet each student's academic, social, and emotional needs. Teachers consider each child's personality, academic strengths and needs, as well as friendships, when they place each child. Each classroom will be configured to allow for a balance of boys to girls, different academic and social needs, as well as behavioral and work habit needs. Learning specialists and the specials team also collaborate with classroom teachers to provide feedback. 
  • Class lists are submitted to administration for review. Administration reviews each child's placement and ensures that all parent input shared with administration has been considered. 
  • Class lists are finalized in August to reflect the addition of new students. 
  • Placement letters will be sent to families in August before school starts. 
This process is consistent across grades K-4. In addition to working with Iron Horse faculty, our 5th grade team collaborates with teachers at Cimarron Middle School to ensure student success in 6th grade. 

We strongly believe that this detailed and collaborative process creates learning environments that benefit all students. It is a delicate balancing act that takes tremendous thought by professionals who know and care about your child. Please remember that our ultimate goal is always to create balanced classes that promote the success of each child. Please also know that your child is placed in a classroom for very specific reasons and that our process benefits all students. Because of the input and thought given by teachers, parents, and administrators, we are reluctant to make changes once this process is complete as moving one child can disrupt the balance of an entire classroom. 

We do value parent input and welcome any insight you wish to share about your child's strengths, needs, and learning style. We will take into consideration all pertinent information that you share with me either on or before Friday, April 28th. While we welcome your input, we cannot honor specific teacher requests. Please put your thoughts in writing and address them to me (Kirsten Bloomfield). I will accept either a hard copy letter or email (kirsten.bloomfield@dcsdk12.org). 

I cannot express how important it is that your thoughts are in writing. As you can imagine, I receive a great deal of parent input and verbal information is nearly impossible to track. Further, please direct all communication to me, as I am ultimately responsible for reviewing the final class lists in late July when teachers are not available. 

Chipotle Night - TONIGHT:
Chipotle night is tonight from 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Just show them the flier you've printed, from your phone, or simply tell them you are there for Iron Horse at check out. Chipotle generously donates 50% of our total sales back to the school, so this can be a great and easy fundraiser. Hope to see you there!

Children's Hospital Drive:
Student Leadership Council would like to thank everyone for their generous donations. We collected 482 items and filled the back of two SUVs.  We are so excited that we are able to help so many children. Thank you for your generosity! 

PARCC/CMAS:
Students in grades 3-5 will be taking the state assessments after spring break. You can find the schedule for testing and other information on the IHE website. This is a very important assessment that provides valuable information in regards to school/student growth and achievement. We use this data to support the development of our school programming and resources. 

Upcoming Events:
March 17-April 2: NO SCHOOL - Spring Break
April 4-20: PARCC Testing - Grades 3, 4, 5 - See Specific Schedules on the IHE Website
April 7: Daddy/Daughter Dance - 7:00-8:00pm in the Gym
April 12: SAC Meeting - 4:00-5:00pm in the Learning Commons
April 19: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
April 20: McTeacher Night at McDonalds on Main Street - 5:00-8:00pm
April 21: NO SCHOOL
May 10: Kindergarten Night - 6:00-6:45pm in the Learning Commons for Incoming Kindergarten parents

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Week of March 6, 2017

Thursday Folder Fliers:

PARCC Testing:
Students in grades 3-5 will be taking the state assessments after spring break. You can find the schedule for testing and other information on the IHE website. This is a very important assessment that provides valuable information in regards to school/student growth and achievement. We use this data to support the development of our school programming and resources. 

Thinking Maps:
This week, students and teachers focused on Double Bubble Maps. Here are some examples of double bubble maps from our students:
5th Grade Map on Body Systems
Kindergarten Map on Past and Present
3rd Grade Map on Parallelograms and Triangles





















Here is the parent memo regarding Double Bubble Maps and their purpose. 

Conferences:
Conferences will be held next week. Teachers will be sharing information regarding student growth and current levels. Please use the Online Scheduler to schedule a time to meet with your student's teacher. The school password is "engineer".  The scheduler will close Sunday, March 12th. 

Thank you!:
Iron Horse Elementary mom, Becki Santangelo, has been cooking lunches for the staff at Iron Horse on a regular basis over the past several years.  She has even been recognized as a 7 Everyday Hero for her generosity!  Becki welcomes food (especially meat) or gift card donations to help offset the cost of providing the meals.  If you would like to help Becki, please give her a call or text at 602-625-8149.   You can also reach Becki at blondjeep@gmail.com.  Thank you Becki for all you do!

Personalized Learning Fair:
We are excited to announce that we are having our second annual Personalized Learning Resource Fair next month!  This is a great event for parents and families to access many different resources in personalized learning including gifted education.  See flyers above for details.  The flyer has also been translated in Mandarin and Spanish.

When: Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Time: 6:30 - 8:30 pm
Where: Chaparral High School

PTO Events:
We are continuing to sell Texas Roadhouse rolls until March 16th. You can find the order form at the top of this post. Chipotle Night is next Thursday, March 16th from 4-8:00pm. Have dinner at Chipotle, mention Iron Horse or bring the flyer at the top of this post, and we will receive 50% of the proceeds from every purchase. 

Upcoming Events:
March 6-16: Student Council's Children's Hospital Drive 
March 6-16: Texas Roadhouse Rolls Sales - Flyer/Order Form is attached above
March 10-16: Book Fair in the Learning Commons
March 13-16: Conferences - sign up with online scheduler
March 16: Pajama Day for students who donated to the Children's Hospital Drive
March 16: Chipotle Night
March 17-April 2: NO SCHOOL - Spring Break
April 4-20: PARCC Testing - Grades 3, 4, 5 - See Specific Schedules on the IHE Website
April 7: Daddy/Daughter Dance - 7:00-8:00pm in the Gym
April 12: SAC Meeting - 4:00-5:00pm in the Learning Commons
April 19: PTO Meeting - 3:45-4:45pm in the Learning Commons
April 20: McTeacher Night at McDonalds on Main Street - 5:00-8:00pm
April 21: NO SCHOOL
May 10: Kindergarten Night - 6:00-6:30pm in the Learning Commons for Incoming Kindergarten parents



Thursday, March 2, 2017

Week of February 27, 2017

Thursday Folder Fliers:

Assessment Day Information:
As you come for assessment day on Friday, please use the following procedures to ensure that students are able to complete the assessment in a quiet and calm atmosphere:

  • Please drop off your student at the assigned time in their classroom
  • Parents/Guardians and siblings are asked to wait in the Learning Commons. We will have chairs set up to accommodate everyone. Please do not wait in the hallway pods as the noise level can be disruptive to the assessment process. 
  • Students will meet parents/guardians in the Learning Commons at the completion of their assessment. 
  • Assessment information will be shared with you at your student's upcoming conference. 

Thinking Maps Week 2: Bubble Maps
This week, students and teachers focused on Bubble Maps. Here are some examples of bubble maps from our students:
Map from 4th grade
2nd Grade Map
5th Grade Map







Kindergarten Map










Dr. Seuss Bubble Map













Attached is the Parent Memo on Bubble Maps

Student Leadership Council - Drive for Children's Hospital:
Student Leadership Council is sponsoring a drive to help kids at Children't Hospital. We are collecting items from March 2-March 16. Children's Hospital is in need of: crayons (4-8 per pack), Nerf basketball hoops, infant/toddler rattles, markers, new release DVDs for all ages (no rated R please) in both English and Spanish, popular Disney DVDs (Bolt, Cars, Princess and the Frog, etc), gift cars to Target/Wal-Mart/movie theaters/restaurants/iTunes/Michaels/Hobby Lobby in any amount, button batteries, playing cards, card games, light up toys, matchbox cars, and/or press and say books. All items must be new. Every student that brings in an item will earn pajama day on March 16th. Collection boxes will be in each of the pod areas. Thank you in advance for your support! 

PTO Events:
We will be selling Texas Roadhouse Rolls from March 6-March 16th. Each dozen pack of frozen rolls costs $6.00 and will be available for pick up on April 12th from 3:30-6:30pm. The order form is available above in the Thursday Folder Fliers. 

On March 16th, we will have Chipotle Night. Visit Chipotle for dinner between 4:00 and 8:00pm, mention Iron Horse, and our school will receive 50% of the proceeds. More information is available in the flyer at the top of the blog. 

Upcoming Events:
March 3: Tomorrow - Assessment Day/NO SCHOOL: Students come with a parent/guardian at their assigned time (see above for more information)
March 3-16: Children's Hospital Drive
March 6-16: Texas Roadhouse Roll Sales
March 8: SAC Meeting in the Learning Commons from 4:00-5:00pm
March 10-16: Book Fair in the Learning Commons
March 14-16: Conferences
March 16: Pajama Day for students who bring an Item for Children's Hospital
March 17-April 2: Spring Break - NO SCHOOL
April 12: Roadhouse Roll Pick-up
April 12: SAC meeting - 4-5pm in the Learning Commons
April 12: Choir Concert in the Gym