Monday, February 24, 2014

Updates 2/24/14

Wiley Updates 2/24/14

Read Across America Week at Wiley, in honor of Dr. Suess's Birthday
Building a Community of Readers at Wiley
Get ready to make green eggs and ham! Read Across America Day coincides each year with Dr. Seuss’s birthday, which this year will take be celebrated on Monday, March 3rd. Billed as “the nation’s largest reading party,” schools across the country will hold events on this day, and all week long, to celebrate storytelling and advance literacy. As they did last year, the Read Across America program is bringing awareness to the relationship between literacy and oral health. Studies have shown a connection between poor oral hygiene, absenteeism and lowered academic performance. When dental pain keeps children from attending school, they miss instruction in reading.  
At Wiley, we will be celebrating Read Across America in a series of events that will take place throughout the week of March 3-8. In years past, we have done a school-wide reading incentive program that encouraged students to reach individual reading goals. This year we are going to switch our focus from the individual to the community. Homerooms will compete with each other in a series of challenges that encourage them to dress up as their favorite characters, collect toothbrushes for those in need, and bring in their overdue library books. Classrooms who win these challenges will be entered to win the grand prize: a classroom visit by the therapy dogs from the See Spot Read program. Events during the week will also include stop, drop & read time and book talks by our librarian. 
What better way to investigate the world and recognize perspectives than through reading? As Dr. Seuss said, “Oh, the places you’ll go!” By establishing the connection between literacy and oral health and asking students to donate toothbrushes, we are taking action for a cause. We hope that you will encourage your child to participate in the Read across America events and to see him or herself as part of a greater community of readers both at Wiley and at home.  
Read Across America Events, March 3-8
Monday, March 3: Newly purchased books will be displayed in the library and ready for check out! Ms. Molloy will visit as many classrooms as possible to book talk these new books.
Tuesday, March 4: Dress up as your favorite book character today! Prizes will be given for the best teacher and teaching team costumes. The class with the most participation will be entered in a prize drawing.
Wednesday, March 5: Promote literacy by bringing in a new toothbrush in its original packaging. The class with the most toothbrushes donated will be entered into a prize drawing.
Thursday, March 6: Bring in your overdue books! The class with the least number of overdue books by the end of the school day will be entered into a prize drawing.
Friday, March 7: Winners of all the classroom challenges and the See Spot Read drawing will be announced today!
Sources:

http://neatoday.org/2014/01/30/the-countdown-to-neas-read-across-america-2014-has-begun/

Read to Achieve Parent Information Session this week
Tuesday, February 25th, at 6:30pm (in the media center) Mrs. McMillan will present information about the Read to Achieve law and implementation for third grade students. District information can be found HERE. The target audience for the session is third grade parents, however, everyone is welcome to attend. 

A Child's Character Matters at Wiley
Guest Blog Post by our school psychologist, Dr. Mary Whitehouse, and school counselor, Judy Williams
Have you ever wondered how much a child’s character development is linked to his or her eventual success later in life?  Paul Tough reports in his book “How Children Succeed,” (2012) that “soft skills” including grit, character and curiosity, are even more important than cognitive skills.  Current research is showing that academic indicators (SAT scores and class rank) are weaker in predicting college performance than measures of a student’s character traits, including responsibility, determination, and perseverance.   To truly equip our Wiley students with the global skills needed to investigate the world, recognize others’ perspectives, communicate ideas and take action, we must recognize that academic skills and character development are critically intertwined.


At Wiley, we purposely teach students eight character traits (Responsibility, Respect, Courage, Kindness, Self-Discipline, Integrity, Perseverance and Good Judgment) and encourage you to reinforce these traits at home as well. One way to help develop these skills is to allow your children to make choices (that are, of course, developmentally appropriate and ones with which you can live) and to experience the consequences—good or bad—of those choices. Allow your children to experience failure, especially now when there are caring adults (namely you) who can help him or her process and learn from the experience—and while the stakes are relatively lower. Encourage your child to tackle the hard task and stick with it until they have reached its end. When we experience success or satisfaction after putting in hard work, it has a positive effect on our brain chemistry such that our level of motivation to do a given task, even when it seems there is no reward, actually increases.  As parents, we naturally want to provide for and protect our children, but we sometimes rush in to protect them from failure.  Instead, allowing them to experience some hardship, challenge, and even failure will enable them to develop strong character and those “soft skills” that are difficult to measure but noticeably important. 


Wiley PTA Updates
Talent Show a Success
Thanks to the Talent Show team for a great evening with two separate talent shows! The acts were great, and the audience loved seeing all of the star Wiley performers. Thanks so much to all of the fabulous volunteers who made the event a success! 
Boosterthon—Volunteers Needed on Thursday 2/27
The Boosterthon Committee is thrilled with progress to date on fundraising! While we can't share numbers until all donations are collected and finalized, suffice it to say that the event will be successful in bringing a significant amount of new technology to Wiley.

The Boosterthon committee needs volunteers this Thursday to help with the big run! Please click on the link below to sign up! 
Also, don’t forget to help your child get pledges for the run. You have until 2/27 to solicit pledges.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Updates 2/17/14

Wiley Updates

Weather Make Up Days 
Winter has been interesting this year! Our make up days for the end of January snow are listed on the WCPSS website and the plan make up days for last week will be determined by the Board of Education tomorrow (Tuesday) night. This information will also be located on the WCPSS website. 

Newly Released Read to Achieve Information and New Information Session Date
Our Read to Achieve third grade parent information session has been rescheduled to February 25 at 6:30pm. The most up to date information on how Read to Achieve is being implemented in our school system is posted here: http://www.wcpss.net/parents/guides/read-to-achieve/. Please review this information carefully prior to the information session. 


Wiley PTA Updates
Come to the Talent Show This Week! Yes, THIS week. 
A high of 70 degrees is expected, so no threat of snow!!
The talent show is this week! Come support all of the Wiley students who have worked so hard to pull together acts and have waited through weeks of snow days to show them off. !  
Date: Thursday, February 20th
K-2 TALENT SHOW:      4:30 PM
3-5 TALENT SHOW:      6:30 PM
Please reach out to talent.show@wileypta.org with any questions. 
Ciago’s Restaurant Night to Benefit Backpack Buddies is Thursday 2/20
Thanks to Ciago’s for rescheduling the restaurant night once again to this Thursday 2/20, beginning at 5:00 p.m.  The evening will benefit Wiley’s Backpack Buddies program. Backpack Buddies which provides 29 Wiley students with weekend food each week. 
Ciago's Italian Bar and Grill is located within walking distance of Wiley at W. Johnson and St. Mary’s Street.  Starting at 5 that evening, 20% of all sales generated, including take-out orders, will benefit the Back Pack Buddy program here at Wiley.  Come dine on some yummy pizza or your favorite Italian fare before or after the talent show.  There are great outside seating options to enjoy the 70 degree high and watch any remaining snow melt away! Hope to see you there!!!  
Boosterthon Kicks off This Week
This week the Boosterthon Fun Run team will lead an opening pep rally in the school gym for all students.  The team will explain how the Fun Run will happen over the next 8 days and that every student will have the option to run as a school and raise funds for technology for their school.  The team will also explain about the short daily huddles that will teach important character lessons, all about Camp High Five and how students can ask friends and family members for pledges.  Students will leave school that day with an informational PledgeBook and their own personal access code to funrun.com.
Please sign up to help with counting after the event. An additional link will be sent next week to help on the actual fun run day! 
 Please feel free to contact Kristine Flora - kristineflora@hotmail.com or 919- 306-5632 with any questions.
Chess Club Makeup Dates Revised
Due to a significant number of missed days due to frozen precipitation, low temperatures, and other fun that we are hopefully done with, we have missed two chess club sessions. To more effectively accommodate band conflicts and provide options, Chess Achieves is offering the following alternatives for makeups for children. Note that the original 4/25 makeup session is now cancelled as this alternative provides more makeup options. 
Please make sure to email to indicate which you will be selecting.
Choose one of the following Make Up Options (worth a value of $20, cost of the missed sessions):
Option 1: Two Lessons:
Offsite Makeup Date Options- Sunday April 13,  May 4, or May 11.
Cary Address:  501 Keisler Drive, Cary  NC, 27518
1p for Beginners, 2p for Intermediate, 3p for Advanced
North Raleigh:  10320 Durant Road STE 101, Raleigh, NC 27614
4p for Beginners, 5p for Intermediate, 6p for Advanced
Email: Info@raleighchessacademy.com to register for Make Up lessons / if you have questions about which level your child should join. 
Option 2:  Entry to 1 Tournament-
April 27, 1 p.m.  – 5 p.m. for all ability levels
Montessori School of Raleigh:  7001 Lead Mine Road, Raleigh, NC  27615
May 18th, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. for all ability levels
Davis Drive Elementary 2151 Davis Drive, Cary, NC 27519
Register online at ChessAchieves.com Tournaments  

Note: Make Up in text box. –skip Paypal payment

Monday, February 10, 2014

Updates 2/10/14

Wiley Updates 2/10/14

Read to Achieve Implementation
As you know new reading guidelines are now in place for third grade students. "The goal of the Read to Achieve program, a North Carolina initiative, is to ensure that every student read at or above grade level by the end of third grade and continue to progress in reading proficiency so that he or she can read, comprehend, integrate, and apply complex texts needed for secondary education and career success (WCPSS, 2013)." Tuesday, February 11 at 6:30pm in Wiley's media center, hear more information about what this looks like at Wiley for our current 3rd graders. The target audience is current 3rd grade parents, but all are welcome. More district information can be found here: http://www.wcpss.net/parents/guides/read-to-achieve/

Guest Blog Post by teachers Ryan Robertson and Katie Dow

The Use of Technology in the Classroom 

At the beginning of the year, the staff at Wiley International Studies Magnet  Elementary School came together and discussed our core values. One of our focuses for implementing these values is by using technology in the classroom more effectively.  With the increasing amount of technology in classrooms, teachers are striving to integrate technology into lessons on a consistent basis.  Paired with effective teaching strategies, this use of technology gives students the opportunity to explore and investigate subject matter in an engaging way.
Examples of resources being utilized in classrooms include Discovery Education, Skype in the Classroom, Smartboard Technology, Edmodo, Big Universe, TenMarks, and innovative webquests for the students.  Check your student’s teacher website for many online resources they can use at home!  All of these resources are being used to help students become 21st century learners.

21 Century Learning incorporates these elements:
• A variety of learning opportunities and activities
• The use of appropriate technology tools to accomplish learning goals
• Project- and problem-based learning
• Cross-curricular connections
• A focus on inquiry and the student-led investigations
• Collaborative learning environments, both within and beyond the classroom
• High levels of visualization and the use of visuals to increase understanding
• Frequent, formative assessments including the use of self-assessment.
(Beer, 2012)

What does this look like in a classroom at Wiley Elementary?
Students are communicating and collaborating while working on projects that are student based, rather than of teacher facilitated.  Look for yourself! http://bit.ly/1itiMZc
Here is an example of a Skype Classroom from a ranger from Yellowstone National Park.  http://bit.ly/LeyT0n
The teachers at Wiley Elementary are sharing different technological resources everyday to enhance the student’s experience while learning.

References:
Beer, S. (2012).  21st century skills:  Preparing students for THEIR future.

Upcoming Important Dates
February 11, 6:30pm Third Grade Read to Achieve Parent Information Session
February 13, Talent Shows, K-2 at 4:30pm and 3-5 at 6:30pm
February 14, Early Release, dismissal at 1:15pm

February 17, Snow Make Up Day, There is school for students.
Wiley PTA Updates
Come to the Talent Show This Week!
The talent show is this week! Come support all of the Wiley students who have worked so hard to pull together acts!  
Date: Thursday, February 13th
K-2 TALENT SHOW:     4:30 PM
3-5 TALENT SHOW:      6:30 PM


*IMPORTANT Talent Show Guidelines: 
--No student will be allowed to stay after dismissal without a parent present and supervising them
--Dismissal is a critical time for staff to send students from school with the proper custodial guardian/parent, in the proper method, and in a safe manner. 
--All students must participate in their normal dismissal or the dismissal noted by their parent prior to 3:15pm on the day of the Talent Show
--If your child usually rides the bus, but will not on Talent Show day you must drive through carpool or walk up to walkers. You MUST have a carpool tag or walker pass to participate in those. Please plan ahead and get a tag/pass prior to Thursday. You will have to wait until the end of dismissal (4:05pm) for a tag/pass if you do not get one before 3:15pm Thursday. 
--Children must be supervised throughout the performances. 
--Each of these steps ensures a safe, enjoyable show for our performers, their families, and their guests. Thank you for supporting them in this way!
Please reach out to talent.show@wileypta.org with any questions. 


Wiley Chess Team takes 3rd in its very first tournament

Wiley’s Chess Team participated in its first chess tournament in late January and took 3rd. Students participating were Scott L., Dylan C., William D., Andrew B., Patrick D.  Congratulations to these five students! 
Boosterthon Volunteers Needed
The PTA is looking for volunteers on the day of the Fun Run for Technology (Thurs 2/27) to help with the event. Sign up at the following link;

PTA Beginning Nominating Process for 2014-2015 Board    
The PTA is already beginning the planning process for next Fall! As required in the PTA bylaws, the Nominating Committee for the Executive Board (President, 1st Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary) is comprised of two current board members and at least one PTA member at large (non-current board member). This year, Catherine Bray and Jessica Wahler will serve as current board members and Hadley Cairns-Heath will serve as a member at large. 
We can add up to two additional members at large to this committee, and we are seeking interested PTA members to help us out! We are also interested in hearing from PTA members who may be interested in Executive Board jobs. 
How much time does the Nominating Committee take, and what positions does it recruit?
The Nominating Committee is only responsible for nominating the four executive board positions (President, 1st Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary). If interested, the committee then continues on to recruit for other Board and Committee chair roles. If interested, you should expect about 4 hours of meetings and work for this first step. These meetings / duties can accommodate those with daytime or evening availability. 
How should I indicate interest in serving on the Nominating Committee, and what happens if more than 2 people volunteer? 
Please email Catherine Bray (vp.programs@wileypta.org) by 2/17 at 5:00 p.m. if you are interested in serving as a member. If you are unable to access email, please send a note in your child’s folder to be put in the PTA mailbox. If more than two people volunteer, the committee will hold a random drawing to select the additional members. If this step is necessary, the volunteers will be informed via email of time / date of the selection. 
Please note that Nominating Committee members cannot be potential candidates for Executive Board roles. 
Are any current officers returning? 
At this point, due either to term limits in the PTA guidelines / individual reasons, we know that the President, 1st Vice President and Treasurer will not return to those positions in 2014-2015. 
What are the responsibilities and time commitments of the President, First Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary?
The term of a PTA position runs from July 1st through June 30th of the following year. Meetings are held over the summer to begin the planning process for the upcoming school year. A summary of job descriptions are provided below for the four Executive Board roles. A more detailed description of the roles can be found here: https://www.ncpta.org/pta/Files/Bylaws_final_6.1.11.pdf
  • President: The role of President is vitally important to the success and effectiveness of the Wiley PTA. He or she works closely with the 1st VP and the Principal to develop the calendar of events, and to ensure the PTA programs meet the needs of our community. In addition, the president presides over the monthly board meetings, sets the meeting agenda and communicates with the committee chairs and co-chairs. The person who holds this position must be committed to Wiley’s mission and be able to motivate others. In addition to attending the monthly board meetings, the president is expected to participate and attend board-sponsored activities throughout the year. Time requirement is approximately 8-10 hours per month.
  • First VP: The President-Elect works closely with the President to become acquainted with the activities and business of the PTA. In addition to helping as needed at events throughout the year, the First VP works to fill volunteer positions during the year s/he will be the President. S/he is responsible for working with Wake County Public Schools to calendar space for any PTA events. In the absence of the President, the First VP takes on the President’s duties. In addition to attending the monthly board meetings, the First VP is expected to participate and attend the majority of board-sponsored activities throughout the year. Time requirement is approximately 5-8 hours per month.
  • Secretary: The PTA secretary records meeting minutes at the monthly board meetings. These minutes are published for approval at the following meeting and are posted on the Wiley web site. In addition to attending the monthly board meetings, the secretary is also responsible for the filing of important documents, keeping a copy of the articles of incorporation and the current uniform local bylaws adopted by PTA and standing rules, if adopted; minutes of past meetings of the general membership and board of directors; a copy of the official membership roster; a current roster of board members, all committee members & chairs; legal documents, including insurance policies and contracts; current and past tax returns; and current and past audit reports. Lastly, they are expected to participate and attend board-sponsored activities throughout the year. Time requirement is approximately 8-10 hours per month.
  • Treasurer: The treasurer is responsible for meeting with the PTA president and school principal prior to the beginning of the new school year to establish a new budget. This entails reviewing last year’s budget and making any necessary adjustments. The treasurer keeps a book of receipts, pays PTA-related bills, including the teacher stipends, and reconciles the monthly bank account. He/She is responsible for presenting information on the budget at each board meeting. At the end of the fiscal year (June 30) the treasurer is responsible for seeing that the bank account is audited. The treasurer also must prepare the PTA’s taxes to be submitted in November. In addition to attending the monthly board meetings, the treasurer is expected to participate and attend board-sponsored activities throughout the year. Time requirement is approximately 6-8 hours per month.
Who should I contact if I am interested in an Executive Board position? 
If you are interested in one of the four positions described above, please send an email to vp.programs@wileypta.org describing your interest in the position by 3/1/2014 at 5:00 p.m. If you are unable to access email, please send a note in your child’s folder to be put in the PTA mailbox.
What other Board and Committee Chair positions exist?
Once the Executive Board has been identified, they will join the Nominating Committee to assist in filling other Board and Committee Chair roles. Please look for additional information on these jobs in the Spring. In the meantime, feel free to go to http://www.wileypta.org/?page_id=641 to see a list of current positions. Note that we may add additional positions in 2014-2015. 
Who should I reach out to with questions? 
Questions on the nominating process can be directed to vp.programs@wileypta.org
How should I express interest in a regular Board or Committee Chair position? 
Please send an email to vp.programs@wileypta.org describing in which position you are interested. You can also send in a note with your child to “Wiley PTA / Attn: Nominating Committee”.


Monday, February 3, 2014

2/3/14 Updates

Wiley Updates

Read to Achieve Implementation
As you know new reading guidelines are now in place for third grade students. "The goal of the Read to Achieve program, a North Carolina initiative, is to ensure that every student read at or above grade level by the end of third grade and continue to progress in reading proficiency so that he or she can read, comprehend, integrate, and apply complex texts needed for secondary education and career success (WCPSS, 2013)." Tuesday, February 11 (new date) at 6:30pm in Wiley's media center, hear more information about what this looks like at Wiley for our current 3rd graders. The target audience is current 3rd grade parents, but all are welcome. More district information can be found here: http://www.wcpss.net/parents/guides/read-to-achieve/

Guest Blog Post by Mrs. Jones and Ms. Hojnacki
How can we use what we know to create fiction stories? How are characters in Jan Brett books connected to our lives? These are the questions that drove our first grade instruction of these Common Core Standards: Write narratives in which they recount two or more appropriately sequenced events, include some details regarding what happened, use temporal words to signal event order, and provide some sense of closure, and With guidance and support from adults, focus on a topic, respond to questions and suggestions from peers, and add details to strengthen writing as needed.

We used a variety of Jan Brett books to explore the following concepts:

-How authors are inspired to write about what they know. 
-How to use the craft of mentor writers to make their writing stronger
- Authors have a unique style that distinguishes their writing from other authors. 

Investigate the World, Recognize Perspectives, and Communicate Ideas

Students learned that Jan Brett based her stories on her world travels, life experiences, and familiar tales such as the Three Little Pigs and Cinderella. We were able to understand this using information from her website, reading her stories, and YouTube videos. Students were exposed to countries such as Russia, South Africa, Zambia, Finland, Norway, Switzerland, China, Costa Rica and they were also exposed to a variety of animals from different parts of the world such as hedgehogs, water buffalo, moose, polar bears, dassies, reptiles, toucan, amphibians, and more. 

Take Action
Students used information gathered during our mini lessons to create their own Realistic Fiction stories modeled after Jan Brett’s style. Students used personal experiences and travels to create fiction stories based on what they know. It was exciting to read their stories that included a variety of characters, settings, problem and solutions, and dialogue.

Upcoming Important Dates
February 3, Report Cards go home 
February 11, 6:30pm Third Grade Read to Achieve Parent Information Session
February 13, Talent Shows, K-2 at 4:30pm and 3-5 at 6:30pm
February 14, Early Release, dismissal at 1:15pm
February 17, Snow Make Up Day, There is school for students.

Wiley Spirit Week     
February 10-14

Monday        RESPECT PROPERTY 
                     Personal ChallengePick up at least one piece of trash/clean a 
                                              desk/etc. during the day.
           
  Bright/Colorful/Neon Clothes Day


Tuesday       RESPECT OTHERS      Compliment Day
  Personal ChallengeCompliment at least three people during the 
                                               day.

  Crazy Mismatch Day (including hair)


Wednesday   RESPECT OTHERS   Mix It Up at lunch 
                       Personal Challenge:       Sit with someone new at lunch.

   Opposite Day   Creativity Encouraged!  (Hats allowed)


Thursday      RESPECT YOURSELF     
  Personal Challenge:   Avoid junk food and increase exercise at 
                                                 recess.

   Dress for Success (dress to impress or what you want to be
                                                     when you grow up)

Friday           RESPECT OTHERS   
   Personal ChallengeBe extra-kind to your teachers! 
  

  PJ Day (school-appropriate jammies)

Wiley PTA Updates
Talent Show DATES CHANGED Due To Snow!
Due to last week’s snow, the talent show rehearsal was cancelled, so the date for the rehearsal and show itself will move: 
Dress Rehearsal: February 6th, 3:45 PM
Talent Shows: February 13th
K-2 TALENT SHOW:      4:30 PM
3-5 TALENT SHOW:      6:30 PM
Please reach out to talent.show@wileypta.org with any questions. 
Ciago’s Restaurant Night Thursday 2/13 to Benefit Backpack Buddies
On Thursday, February 13th, the PTA is organizing a restaurant night to benefit Wiley’s Backpack Buddies program. Backpack Buddies provides 29 Wiley students with weekend food each week. 
Ciago's Italian Bar and Grill is located within walking distance of Wiley at W. Johnson and St. Mary’s Street.  Starting at 5 that evening, 20% of all sales generated, including take-out orders, will benefit the Back Pack Buddy program here at Wiley.  Come dine on some yummy pizza or your favorite Italian fare before or after the talent show.  Hope to see you there!!!  
District 6 Board Advisory Committee is Meeting at Wiley
The District 6 Board Advisory Committee is meeting this Thursday, 6  February, at Wiley.  The meeting will focus on School Safety and  Security, with presentations from Dr. Marrius Pettiford, Sr. Director Counseling & Student Services and Mr. Russ Smith, Senior Director,  
WCPSS Security Department.  The meeting will begin at 12pm and will end by 1.15.

These meetings are open to all.  If you are interested in joining us you may bring a bag lunch; drinks and snacks will be provided.  If you are not able to attend but have a question for either speaker please let me know and I will ask for you at the meeting.

Yours,

Meredith Nelson
advocacy@wileypta.org
Chess Club Date Changes Due to Snow 
Due to last week’s Friday snow day, Chess Club was not held. The makeup session will be held on  4/25 as 4/17 is a holiday for students
Continuing Band Solo & Small Ensemble Showcase

Join us this SaturdayFebruary 8th at 1pm for a fun show featuring soloists and small ensembles from the Wiley Continuing Band.  The performance is free, and will be held at Glen Eden Neighborhood Center (1500 Glen Eden Drive, Raleigh).  Come on out and support our excellent young musicians!