Monday, April 3, 2017

The Honors Continue!

In addition to the Teacher of the Year recipients that we posted about on Friday, we have two other special employees to honor:

We are honored to announce our Classified Employee of the Year is Sheila Remers. Sheila works for our ESS Department and will do whatever is needed across the District. She has filled in for the Business Office on multiple occasions, saving the district valuable time and money. In addition, she helped us spruce up our board room by sewing beautiful blue curtains to hang on the front tables.

We are also honored to announce our District Reading Teacher of the Year, Tina Hober. Tina is a teacher at Lakeside Farms and has inspired a love of reading in her students. She is passionate about learning and teaching, and her students excel under her love and support. When she's not inspiring students to be all that they can be, she is also inspiring our new teachers as the BTSA (Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment)lead for our district. This year over 20 new teachers benefitted from her guidance!

Friday, March 31, 2017

Congrats to our School and District Teachers of the Year!

School Site Teachers of the Year

Eucalyptus Hills - Tessa Green

Tessa Green is a strong leader and an excellent teacher. She maintains a friendly, positive, and professional demeanor at all times. She is always willing to look at new ways of doing her job and is constantly striving to be innovative and that fact is reflected in her students' academic and behavioral successes. Not only does Tessa serve on numerous committees, she also provides 1:1 coaching and ongoing mentoring before/after school and during her lunch break to support our new teachers. Tessa embodies and tirelessly promotes the schoolwide belief that we are all responsible for the success and well being of every student at Eucalyptus Hills.

Lakeside Farms - Lina Cortes

Lina Cortes has dedicated many years to serve the needs of the students, teachers, and parents of Lakeside. She spends many hours working behind the scenes with our English Language Learners and their parents. Not only is she always a positive role model, but she also is highly involved in empowering families, students, and teachers. You can find Lina at most events, or serving on multiple committees because she always goes above and beyond for the school. Lina engages her students by making curriculum attainable. She carefully prepares lessons, brings in speakers, plans field trips, offers tactile and kinesthetic learning experiences, and shares music and art with the students. She empowers students by finding resources that meet the needs of every student.

Lakeside Middle School - Karen Saake

Karen Saake is a resource teacher at LMS. She is looked upon as a leader across the campus. She works very closely with the general education teachers to ensure that every one of her students experience success. When she is in a general education course providing support for her students, she is truly a team player, working closely with the teacher as a true partner to ensure success of all students. Across the campus, staff look to Karen for advice on the unique situations that arise in special education. Karen will never give up on a student and often takes on the most challenging cases. She truly owns her students and works to ensure their success in all areas.

Lakeview - Shawn Williams

Shawn Williams is an exemplary educator. Staff and students alike excel under her leadership. She has a strong knowledge of curriculum content and she works consistently and collaboratively with her colleagues in an effort to improve teaching and learning. Shawn has an unsurpassed dedication to her craft. She is a model for Teaching for Mastery and she utilizes multiple measures to ensure that her students are learning and progressing towards mastery of grade level standards. Walking into Shawn's classroom, students are excited about their learning and actively engaged in student discourse. Although she is a seasoned teacher, she constantly strives to learn and grow professionally. Staff and students alike benefit from the knowledge and expertise she shares.

Lemon Crest - Heather Taft

Heather Taft is the true embodiment of what it means to believe in every one of her students and expect them to succeed no matter their capabilities. When you ask anybody about Heather, student or colleague, the first thing they will tell you is how much she cares about them and wants to see them fulfill their potential. Heather will do whatever it takes to provide the environment and instruction to make that happen. No matter what student challenges Heather has been faced with, she has approached each case individually with grace, dedication, and compassion. Heather has been involved with every innovative initiative that the district has offered. She devotes herself to staying on the cutting edge with the intention of always doing what's best for our students.

Riverview - Alejandra Morales

Alejandra Morales goes above and beyond the call of duty for her students, parents, and colleagues and anyone else who works with her. She is a loving and conscientious teacher who always puts kids first. She never has a negative thing to say and is always up building everyone around her. She has sustained an excellence in her teaching, has a passion for her profession, and an innate ability to connect with students. She is always willing to take on new challenges and learn new things. Her vast knowledge of teaching is a benefit for her students.

Tierra del Sol Middle - Dahlia Rinck

Dahlia Rinck is a great 8th grade team leader. She connects with every student, and encourages and believes in each of them every day. She is a champion of design thinking, and works tirelessly with her team to create cross-curricular projects that engage students. Her knack for securing grants has resulted in awesome additions added to our science and technology initiatives, such as a 3D printer and a Salk Lab visit to learn about DNA. Dahlia designs her lessons to promote the 4 C's - communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity, and the results have shown! Not only have her English test scores grown 18% in one year, but students are also able to design an annual memorial project for the school because they have developed the skillset to do so.

Winter Gardens - Jodi Stein

Jodi Stein is an excellent teacher. She supports other teachers on campus with professional learning. She is a teacher-leader of PBIS and Learning Headquarters. In addition, she is a fantastic teammate for the Mandarin team. She has sustained an excellence in instruction, innovative instructional strategies, and a passion for her profession. She is an amazing teacher with so much compassion for her students, as well as teaching. She always goes above and beyond in everything she does for her students, co-workers, and everyone around her. She has an incredible dedication to the Mandarin program and support of new teachers.

District Teacher of the Year
Suzy Bass, Lindo Park

Suzy is a tireless advocate for Lakeside students, families, and the community. She coordinates many responsibilities with humility and grace while also providing an exceptional learning environment for her students. Suzy's classroom is marked by active, engaged students. She works closely with her grade level teammates to gather data, review student progress and plan lessons and strategies to increase all students' achievement. And her students LOVE Ms. Bass. She provides an environment promoting trust and achievement; all students in her classroom recognize this. Suzy is a bedrock member of the Lindo Park PTA. Not only does she spend countless hours working closely with the PTA, but she also organizes the annual Run for the Arts, a districtwide fundraiser that has hundreds of participants. As if that wasn't enough, Suzy also organizes and co-hosts the 4th and 5th grade Science Club. This eight week course prepares students to compete in the County's Elementary Science Field Day. And finally, Suzy is a trusted colleague and friend to many of the staff at Lindo Park. She is a great listener and is always ready to help a teacher in need. Suzy does it all and she is still ready to go!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

When Tech and Ed meet in a Third Grade Classroom

Guest Blog Post by Beth Sandford, Lemon Crest teacher
New to Lakeside but not new to teaching, a teacher for twenty years, the most noticeable difference  I saw when I arrived in Lakeside was how teachers support teachers, and how Ed and Tech merge in the classroom in the most wonderful way!

~Beth Sandford

Learning About Our Community
Thanks to Sandy Patterson and Kay Little who helped our class connect with Miss Edna, a life long resident of Lakeside. She shared with us memories of the Lakeside Inn, the flood of 1916, the Railroad, and the Lakeside Raceway. Skype allowed us to connect with community members and learn about how our community has changed. To see the Twitter post, click HERE

Breakout EDU
You may have heard about Breakout Rooms, but have you heard about Breakout EDU? In Breakout EDU, players work collaboratively to solve a series of critical thinking puzzles in order to open a locked box. My class read the BFG in the fall as part of the Global Read Aloud Challenge. Then we helped Sophie save all the Fizzwizard dreams in our first Breakout EDU challenge. The class had to work together to solve problems that would help them unlock a series of locks. Inside we found a Thank You from Sophie and BFG bookmarks.

Student creation and learning on the iPads is mindblowing! Students have the ability to show deeper understanding of concepts by using apps like Shadow Puppet, Telagami, Book Creator, iMovie, Pic Collage, Popplet, and Explain Everything. The difficulty is having a way for students to share their projects with classmates and family in a safe and meaningful way. My class uses Seesaw, a digital portfolio, to share work with each other and with family. 
Click HERE to see examples of how you can use Seesaw in your classroom.

Donor's Choose Flexible Seating

My classroom also had a project funded through Donor's Choose for flexible seating. We have designed a learning space in our classroom where students can work at a cafe table, s small writing table the floor or using stability balls. My first year in Lakeside has been filled with gratitude for the amazing teachers I work with at Lemon Crest, the talented Tech department (Laura, Kay and Sandy) and my students who are at the very core of every decision I make in my classroom each day!