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In Celebration of Georgetown Teachers

spotlightGeorgetown Elementary is well into it’s fifth year of operation. We opened in September of 2006 and we are just one of SEVEN outstanding Hudsonville Public school elementary buildings.   This year, we have 591 students, ages 3-11 and in grades ECSE (Early Childhood Special Education) through fifth grade.  There are 35 teachers and over 20 specialists and paraprofessionals who support children in learning each day.  In addition, our two building secretaries (Mrs. Ripley and Mrs. Nurenberg) and our head custodian (Mr. Rob) and his three assistant custodians keep the building managed, clean and secure.

Often, the main stream media creates ripple sof negativity by saturating the news with articles focused on failing schools, ineffective teachers and poorly maintained and operating schools.  I want to use this post to highlight some POSITIVE work we are doing at Georgetown, which is just one of the successful Hudsonville Public Schools…a truly incredible district!

I have worked several schools throughout Michigan during my 25+ career in education—with hundreds of teachers, administrators and specialists.   With this broad perspective, I want you to know that at Georgetown, your children are working daily with an outstanding group of gifted educators.  Not only do they work as a team model and guide the most progressive instructional strategies, they collaborate before, during and after school to plan lessons that extend learning.  Throughout the year, they pursue advanced studies for their teaching degrees in reading, math, technology, specialized learning courses, at one of six local colleges, universities and several online sites.

The teacher’s blogs are designed to highlight student learning and celebrations of events that take place throughout the year.  I would like to encourage you to visit these and see examples of the great work being done in our many classroom.  All the blogs are listed in the sidebar to the left.  I have selected one from each area to highlight below.

Thank you for all you do to support us as educators and most importantly, to support your child as as learner!  We could not do our important work without your support.

Mrs. Reagan

Mrs. Estefan’s recent post shares how she and her students welcomed a consultant from our local intermediate to share the work they are doing as kindergarten writers.  The consultant, Mrs. Reimbold, shared a strategy that will help the kindergarteners add more details to their personal narrative stories.

Miss Taber, a first grade teacher, celebrates the great progress her students have made in working together to create a climate where all learners can listen and problem solve together.

Mrs. Kuieck,  a second grade teacher, provides an example of how she updates parents on assessments and events in her classroom.

Mrs. Flory, a third grade teacher, shares photos from a science field trip to the Outdoor Discover Center.

Mr. Kooiker, a fourth grade teacher, has posted curriculum maps for the fourth grade curriculum.

Mrs. Bouwens, a fifth grade teacher, created a video highlighting the work her students are doing to understand the core democratic values in social studies.

Did you know that we have specialized programs at our school?  These students are an equal part of our school.  To learn more about them, visit the Mrs. Van and Mrs. Murphy’s ECSE Blog and Mrs. Kok’s Blog

All of our specialists have blogs that serve as resources to help you with tips for reading , speech and language ,  art, music and PE.

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Blog Spotlight

Georgetown has four 2nd grade teachers on staff.  These teachers, Mrs. Greenlund, Mrs. Kuieck, Mrs. Quigley and Mr. Bowen, work closely to plan instruction, assessment and special activities.  Their great professional relationship and shared passion for teaching is evident in their blog communications.  You will be amazed by the student writing that is being shared–as well and the rich learning in all content areas.  Please take time to visit these blogs and learn about the incredible instruction taking place in our second grade classrooms.

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Blog Spotlight

As I have mentioned before, one of my favorite Sunday afternoon activities involves reading through our school blogs and then highlighting the work being done by our incredibly skilled staff members.  The teachers in this building are progressive and focused at all times on how to improve their instruction so that they can improve student learning–no matter what it takes.  Their plates are full…and their hearts are huge.

In addition, they happen to work with me, a tech geek principal who understands the future of paperless communication, and the need to create blogs, wiki’s and classroom/personal learning networks.  They are very patient with me…willingly take baby steps with me toward this goal.  And they do this IN ADDITION to everything else!

For these reasons, I feel it is imperative that I celebrate their work on blogging and encourage you to visit our blogs.  Please leave comments…and we will do our best to get back to you!

This week, I would like to celebrate our specialist blogs.  We are very lucky to have teachers within our building who have additional training in cognitive impairments, speech/language, and learning challenges.  Because these teacher’s roles range from servicing students within the classrooms (inclusion) as well as pulling out (focused instruction in a separate classroom), their blogs are a work in progress.  Each teacher is sorting out how to best support parents–with resources and information about student learning.

Mrs. Sinke, Resource Room:  Learning Disabilities

Mrs. Reifschneider (Mrs. R), Resource Room, Learning Disabilities

Mrs. Rebecca Kok (Miss Becky), CI Room:  Cognitive Disability

Mrs. Speidel/Mrs. Karel, Speech & Language Pathologists

Mrs. Murphy/Mrs. VanderPloeg: ECSE:  Early Childhood Special Education