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Even though we have not quite reached the mid-way point in the school year, returning from the holiday break gives us the feeling of a fresh start. Personally, I enjoy the winter months. There are no bugs or sweltering days of high humidity - and just as important, the thought of keeping busy with the bustling activity of school seems much more joyful when Pomme-de-Terre Golf Course is under several inches of snow.

Although we check the understanding of our students on a daily basis, January brings some more formal measures to this process. Using tools such as the NWEA, AIMSweb, and IGDIs, we will again gauge the learning of all students as compared with the start of the year in September. Teachers will analyze this data and determine if changes are needed to benefit the learning process for each child. Students will also check their own progress by examining individual goal sheets.

All elementary teaching staff now have their own individual web pages. This is a great resource to check the weekly happenings/schedules/lessons for your child's classroom. To access teacher sites, first go to the district web site, then click on Elementary, then on Faculty. To access my site first go to the district web site, then click on Elementary, then on PRINCIPAL.

If you didn't have an opportunity, I would encourage you to take a look at my colleague's (H.S. Principal Craig Peterson) Dec. 22, Sun Tribune article. He had some very good things to share.

A special thanks to the Morris Sun Tribune for the outstanding job covering school events. We are fortunate to have this community and school asset.

As always, if you have any questions or would just like to visit, please stop in; this is your school!

P.S. Don't forget Coffee with Ken held from 77:30 a.m. in the school cafeteria the first Friday of each month (next opportunity Feb. 1).

This is a time for fellowship, asking questions, and getting to know your school a little bit better!

1. Thanks to a grant from the Morris Area Arts Boosters, third grade students will be participating in a week-long (Feb. 4-8) artist residency put on by Jim Mondloch. Mondlock is an experienced painter and art teacher with a degree in watercolor and design. Students will experience working with color, texture, values, designs, and various washes and brushstrokes to create a series of original paintings.

2. Our Book Fair was very successful with total sales of $5,119 and a profit for our school of $1,280. This is a new high compared to the last six book fairs. Thank you to Heather Montonye, everyone that came and supported our school, and to all our volunteers. We could not do this without you!

3. The school calendar lists the 5th and 6th grade winter band and choir concert twice: on Jan. 25 and Feb. 7. The CORRECT date is Jan. 25. There will be a matinee starting at 1:30 p.m. with the evening concert starting at 7 p.m. (There is no concert on Feb. 7.)

Dates To Remember

Jan. 4-16--NWEA Testing

Jan. 16--Spelling Bee, 1:45 p.m., Concert Hall

Jan. 18--End of 1st Semester/2nd Quarter

Jan. 21--Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - NO SCHOOL

Jan. 22--Teacher Work Day - NO SCHOOL

Jan. 23--2nd Semester Milk Money Due

Jan. 25--4th Grade Ski Trip, 5th & 6th Grade Band & Choir Concert / Concert Hall, 7 p.m.; 2nd Quarter report cards distributed