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Sunday, March 22, 2015

Monday Message 3/23

Good Morning Lowell Families,

The students at the Lowell School read 708 hours last week as part of the 2015 Reading Challenge: Birds of a Feather...Reading Together.   The reading challenge last for 4 weeks.  The students need to read a total of 5,000 hours to earn a special assembly.  The students will need to read much more than 700 hours per week to reach the goal of 5,000 hours.  Families can get in on the action and help out.  Reading to children earns minutes in addition to children reading on their own.  There are many benefits to reading to children, even for children old enough to read on their own.  Check out the article posted on www.greatschools.org that examines the benefits of reading aloud to children.  Children can track their reading minutes on the owl reading logs and return completed logs to class to add to the classroom total.

PARCC in Grade 3, 4, and 5

Students will be taking the PARCC exams this week.  It is important for students to arrive on time.  Testing sessions will begin first thing in the morning.

Monday 3/23
Tuesday 3/24
Wednesday 3/25
ELA Session 1
ELA Session 2
ELA Session 3


Monday 3/30
Tuesday 3/31
Math Session 1
Math Session 2

There will be no Homework Club this week.


Healthy Technology Use Speaker Series

On Wednesday, March 25th Jon Mattleman will be the first in a series of speakers on healthy technology use.  Please use the link to access the flyer or sign up to attend the speaker series at: Healthy Technology Use Sign-Up.

PTO: Upcoming Events & Fundraisers:
Boston Red Sox - 4/27, 6:10pm.
Paint Bar - 5/19, 6:30pm

Lost and Found

The Lost and Found in the cafeteria is looking very full.  Please check it out.  I'm sure there are many hats, mittens, and lunch boxes that have not made it home this winter.


Have a great week!

Ms. Donovan

Monday, March 16, 2015

Monday Message 3/16

Good Morning Lowell Families,

We have broken the record for snowfall this year but luckily it has not caused another cancellation.  This has been a difficult winter but despite all of the challenges parents and teachers in Watertown continue to work for what is best for the students.  Thank you to everyone who contributed to making the PTO Zumbathon a success.  The money the PTO raises helps to fund important resources for students at the Lowell School.  

Site Council
On Tuesday, March 17th at 7:00 PM is the next Lowell Site-Council meeting.  We will be working on crafting goals for the 2015-2016 School Improvement Plan.  



Healthy Technology Use Speaker Series
Here Is a link to the flyer: Healthy Technology Use

Reserve your seat today! https://healthy-families-2015.eventbrite.com for one, two or all three of the Speaker Series.



PARCC Schedule:
Students in Grades 3-5 will begin taking the PARCC exam next week.  At the Lowell School the testing schedule will be:

Monday 3/23
Tuesday 3/24
Wednesday 3/25
ELA Session 1
ELA Session 2
ELA Session 3

Monday 3/30
Tuesday 3/31
Math Session 1
Math Session 2

Attendance on the testing days is very important.  Students need to be at school on time to settle into the routine of the day and prepare for a successful testing session.  

PTO:
The Lowell PTO is taking reservations for Red Sox Tickets, Monday April 27th 7:10 PM.  The Red Sox are playing the Toronto Blue Jays.  Here is a link to the form: Lowell PTO Night at the Red Sox.  Forms are due by March 31st.  

Have a great week!

Ms. Donovan


Monday, March 9, 2015

Monday Message 3/9

Good Morning Lowell Families,


School Calendar

The School Committee voted last Monday on a revised school calendar.  Friday, April 3rd has become an early release day rather than a no school day.  If there are NO OTHER snow days the last day of school will be Monday, June 29th.  Please use the following link for an updated copy of the school calendar.  2014-2015 Revised School Calendar.

Lowell Reading Challenge 2015: Birds of a Feather- Reading Together

This week is the beginning of our month-long reading challenge.  Students at the Lowell school work together  to try to read 5,000 hours.  Students will bring home reading logs that they can use to track their minutes of reading.  If we reach our goal the school will earn a special assembly.  Check out the video that students watched as a kick-off to the reading challenge.


PARCC Parent Information

Students in grades 3-5 persevered through their PARCC practice tests last week.  There is a link to information about the PARCC exams for parents on the Watertown Public Schools homepage.  Here is a link to the slides from the PARCC Parent Coffee at the Lowell School.  Additional information can be found at the PARCC website.

Arrival Time and Students Entering the Building

The temperatures are warmer this week and we are returning to our regular arrival procedures.  Students will not be permitted to enter the building prior to 8:05 unless they are attending a before-school program. Students entering the building after 8:20 will be marked tardy.

PTO

There is a PTO meeting this Tuesday evening at 7:00 PM.  Participating in the PTO is a great way to be involved in the school.  Please check-out a meeting and see how you can support our students.

Zumbathon

This Sunday, March 15th the PTO is sponsoring a Zumbathon from 2:00 PM- 4:00 PM!!  This is a family-friendly event and a chance for parents and kids to get some exercise.  The instructors will include Ms. Jacobson and Ms. Peca from the Lowell staff and parent, Veronica Castillo.

Have a great week!

Ms. Donovan

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Monday Message 3/2

Good Morning Lowell Families,

The students at the Lowell School learned a lot about perseverance over the past week.  On Tuesday we had an assembly and students listened to the story, The Most Magnificent Thing, by Ashley Spires.  In this story the girl struggles with engineering a design that she sees perfectly in her mind.  She continues to work until she is successful.  On Thursday students put their own engineering skills to the test during Buddy Activity time.  Students used marshmallows and toothpicks to try to build towers.  The students had to persevere and problem-solve the best way to use these challenging building materials. 
Perseverance is an important character trait for students to develop.  It is important for students to learn to stick with challenging work.  Check out the following article on the importance of developing perseverance in students: How to Foster Grit, Tenacity and Perseverance: An Educator’s Guide.  As busy as life can be, it can be difficult to find opportunities to help your children develop perseverance.  It is important to think about times when you can slow down and let children figure things out for themselves.  This might mean several failures before achieving success.  It is important to celebrate the effort not just the end result. 

This Week:

PARCC-  This year students in Watertown are participating in the PARCC assessments instead of the MCAS assessments for ELA and Mathematics.  This week students in grades 3, 4, and 5 will be participating in PARCC practice tests.  The PARCC practice sessions are an opportunity for students to see what the experience of taking PARCC will be like.  On Friday, March 6th at 8:30 AM there will be a parent coffee for parents in grades 3, 4, and 5 to learn more about the PARCC exams. 

Next Week:

PTO Meeting: There will be a PTO meeting on Tuesday, March 10th  @ 7:00 PM.   Please attend to learn more about how you can support the classrooms at the Lowell School.  We appreciate the involvement of parents at the Lowell School.  If you have not had an opportunity to volunteer this year, please make an effort to attend the meeting and get involved. 

Bandarama:  On Wednesday, March 11th from 7:00 – 8:30 PM is Bandarama at Watertown High School.  This event is a chance to celebrate and enjoy the musical programs in Watertown. 

Have a great week!

Ms. Donovan


Sunday, February 22, 2015

Monday Message 2/23

Good Morning Lowell Families,

Welcome back!  Hopefully we can have a more regular school schedule, without so many cancelled days.  This week we will try to settle back into our routines.  We will have a whole school assembly on Tuesday focussed on perseverance and, a buddy activity on Thursday where students will work on a challenge to practice perseverance.

Early Release Reminder:
Wednesday, February 25th is an early release day.  Students will be dismissed at 12:15.

School Site- Council:
The Lowell School Site-Council will meet this Tuesday, February 24th at 7:00 in the Lowell Library.  We will begin to work on the goals for next year's school improvement plan.

PTO:
The PTO is sponsoring a BINGO night on Thursday, February 26th.  This is a great family event.  See you there!

Zumbathon: On Sunday, March 15th the Lowell School will host a Zumbathon!  Please check out the flyer.  This is a great event for families to be healthy and support the Lowell School.  

Have a great week!

Ms. Donovan

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Monday Message 2/9

Good Morning Lowell Families,

We are facing another storm that could disrupt the start to our school week.  Please tune in to local news for updates on school cancelations or delayed openings.

School Calendar Updates:

The district has had to make some adjustments to the schedule for spring conferences.  The parent and teacher conferences that were originally scheduled for March have been moved to April.  Use the following link for an updated school calendar: 2014-2015 Revised School Calendar.  Elementary report cards will be sent home on Thursday, March 26.

PTO

The next PTO meeting is Tuesday, February 10th at 7:00 PM.

Tardies and Absences:

The snow storms have made for many disruptions to the school calendar.  Teachers are trying to keep students immersed in the daily routines despite all of the snow days.  Teachers are trying to maximize every moment of instruction in these short weeks.  For these reasons it is important for students to be in school and to arrive on time.  Students can arrive at school starting at 8:05.  School begins at 8:15.  Any student arriving after 8:20 are marked tardy.  I will be contacting families if students have excessive absences or tardies.

Ms. Knight's Guidance Blog:

The Lowell School Guidance counsellor, Ms. Knight, has a blog that she updates with information about education, child development and parenting.  Her latest post is about successful relationships.  Please check out the guidance blog at the following link: Lowell Guidance Blog.

PARCC

In the 2014-2015 school year the students in grades 3, 4, and 5 will take the new PARCC test instead of the MCAS test that students have taken in past years.  On Friday, March 6th there will be a parent coffee for parents in grades 3, 4, and 5 to get an overview of the PARCC testing.  PARCC testing will occur during two weeks in March and two weeks in May.

Have a great week!

Ms. Donovan

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Tuesday Message 2/3

Good Morning Lowell Families,

Mr. MacLeod and Mr. Murgo have been working tirelessly to clear the snow from the Lowell School.  We should be in good shape tomorrow morning but, we will need your cooperation in the "Drop and Go" line.  Please pull ALL the way up as far as you can before letting children out of the car.  Do NOT stop on Lowell Ave just after the turn from York Street, this causes traffic to back up.  The roads are narrow.  Please do not park in ways that prevent traffic from flowing on the side streets.

International Night
Thank you to the PTO and all of the families and volunteers that helped to make International Night a success.  Friday evening was a wonderful celebration of the rich diversity in the Lowell community.  Students enjoyed learning about the different countries represented in the school.  The food that families brought to share was delicious.  It was wonderful to enjoy a meal with parents, students and teachers.  The next PTO meeting is Tuesday, February 10th at 7:00 PM.

Caring School Community Buddies
Last Thursday, our students met for CSC buddy time.  There were many wonderful projects going on.  Ms. Peca and Mr. Pinsoneault's class read "Thank You Mr. Falker" and, learned about how the author Patricia Pollaco persevered though learning challenges.  Ms. Morrison and Ms. Park's classes a story and created this bulletin board for the cafeteria displaying the goals that each student wants to persevere and achieve.


Integrity
Our core value that we will focus on for the month of February is Integrity.  C.S. Lewis describes integrity as, "Integrity is doing the right thing; even when you think no one is watching."  Along with our other core values of cooperation, kindness, and perseverance, teachers will be trying to recognize students that are acting with integrity.  

Hopefully we are done with snow for a while.  See everyone at school tomorrow.  Have a great week!

Ms. Donovan