A Note From Mr. Capp 11/14/19
Have you ever asked yourself ‘is my kid figuring it out? Am I pushing my kid too much, or not asking enough?’ I’ve been a part of several conversations like this lately, in our own home with my 16-year old, and with teachers and parents here at Steele. We all know every kid is unique and special, and we probably shouldn’t compare our kids to others, and yet we still notice, don’t we?
Knowing and understanding kid development can help understand your own child’s needs, and help decrease unproductive comparisons to other kids. In my house of 2 grown children and one still in high school, Maria and I are sometimes frustrated by our 16-year old’s organizational skills. There’s awareness, but not always action. When we reflect carefully, we realize we are comparing him to his siblings, who were both several months older and developmentally further along. There are a lot of good resources to help us understand development, and one we’ve recently added to our library is Yardsticks: Child and Adolescent Development Ages 4-14 by Chip Wood. You can find it on Amazon. Understanding stages of development, interests and abilities by age really helps us measure our expectations, keep us parents, teachers, and adults from being frustrated, and give students the tools to succeed.
I hope you have a great weekend, and please join us next Thursday for our annual Thanksgiving meal – a note went home the other day and forms are due Monday.
A Note from Mr. Capp: 10/18/19
Did you know?
- Just about every Friday, grade levels across the building work together on buddy projects. Today, our 5th graders were all over the halls and classrooms building ramps with Kindergartners. It’s cute, and it’s physics!
- 1 Steele Star from each classroom is honored each week on STV. I bet you knew this already. Our STV leaders do a great job organizing and helping our stars during the video production.
- The city is rebuilding all the sidewalk entrances, curbs and making car mazes out of orange and white barrels on Nevada. You definitely knew this already.
- Teachers are busy busy busy. They entered grades earlier this week, did some training for our new Socio-Emotional curriculum, Random Acts of Kindness (randomactsofkindess.org), and continue to plan lessons that challenge and target student needs. Please make sure you’ve signed up through your classrooms for conferences next week on Wednesday after school or all-day Thursday.
- No school Thursday next week – conferences. And no school on Friday.
Thanks for all you do to support your students at Steele.
A Note From Mr. Capp: 9/19/19
Are You Enjoying Palindrome Week?
91919 Notes of Steele.
Happy Thursday Steele Families!
Raising kids is a fluid process that we plan for, try to anticipate, and then at times our plans just fall apart. Kids aren’t factories that you deliver some supplies to, mold and work them, and then they pop out as contributing human beings, are they? At Steele, we try to provide lots experiences, tools and routines to gradually release responsibility and embed internal learning. That way each child has the personal understanding of themselves, their skills, and dreams so they can succeed.
Teachers have been discussing student math work at every level, and in the spirit of releasing responsibility and learning to the student, are designing math experiences that help them reconsider, rewrite, and extend their thinking. Many Kinders, for example, are working on one-to-one number correspondence and recognition of integral numbers 1-10. Teachers are planning different ways to show their knowledge with different shapes and drawings. When we talk to kids about why they drew things a certain way, we find out a lot of what they know and how to direct their next learning experience.
A couple of reminders: please sign in when you visit the building. We especially thank all of you that sign in when you visit your child during lunch. A new sign-in system will be rolling out in the coming months, so look for info about that soon.
Also, thank you for your slow, careful driving especially in the morning. I sure notice how strong the sun is for eastbound drivers, and little ones can be hard to see in the glare. There seems to be a lot of construction on houses in the alley right now, and then there’s the one-lane business on Nevada. Also, I’ve seen the motorcycle police cruising Weber several times since we’ve begun school.
No school Monday the 23rd – it’s a teacher professional development and work day.
Thanks everyone! Mr. Capp
A Note From Mr. Capp: 9/12/19
We are busy this week! I’ve been visiting classrooms, where students have been practicing the writing and reading stamina. Some students are working on 30 minutes of uninterrupted writing – I wonder if we adults could manage that kind of dedication. When teachers ask students to spend time writing, observing insects, or to make inferences using maps, they are helping students learn to learn. Sometimes we call this an academic mindset, where we intentionally design learning to:
- Help kids participate by talking to each other
- Ask for help
- Take risks
- Try hard on challenging tasks
- Keep trying after failure
- Sharing and idea, even when others might disagree, and
- Revise their work after feedback.
Ask your students if they’ve done one of these things when you talk with them at the end of the day, and try relating their work to yours. We thank you for your partnership in growing your students.