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District News
April News You Can Use PDF Print E-mail
Raymond Elementary      

Raymond Elementary School has a full calendar throughout the rest of the year. After conferences, students will delve into state testing. It is now time for the students to show their “grit” and give it their 100% on the tests. Our staff instills a growth mindset in students, helping them understand they can learn anything if they give it their all. With new standards and testing, many parents have concerns with helping their kids with the “new math.” Here are some tips to increase student success in math:

Covering your bases

  • If math makes your nervous or you feel it has no practical use, try not to pass on your feelings to your child. Share only what is helpful, not harmful.
  • You may want to rely on a peer tutor or older sibling to help. Your child may have a friend doing the same work that can provide help in a structured environment.
  • Begin each math homework session by asking your child to explain what he/she is supposed to do. By the response, you’ll know if she can do the assignment alone or if help is needed.
  • If you’re not around when your child completes his/her work, let your child know you’ll look it over when you get home. Be sure to follow through.
  • Encourage your child to check in with a classmate if they don’t understand or miss an assignment.

Home is where the math is

  • Explore math in everyday life- counting out forks to set the table, or telling the time when a favorite TV show begins. When kids realize that math is all around them, they begin to relax and see the meaning in their lives.
  • Show how math is more than learning addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Math also teaches us to analyze, reason, and plan. These are useful skills that transfer over to reading and writing as well.
  • Encourage your child to explain their problem-solving process so you can understand his/her reasoning.
  • Expose your child to money in early school years. Collecting coins in a piggy bank and counting them regularly is a great skill. Tthe increasing popularity of credit/debit cards has decreased the number of people practicing this foundational skill.
  • Have your child us an analog and digital watch to learn both methods of telling time.
  • Incorporate games involving numbers and math into play time- from flash cards for learning basic math facts to board games involving money, time, and logic.
  • It’s OK to say that you don’t understand a problem. Seek answers and establish a clear understanding with your child’s teacher about the frequency and amount of homework given. Necessary homework modifications can be made to increase motivation and productivity. 

Contact Info: Chris Cady, 360-942-3415 option 1,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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Raymond Junior/Senior High

It’s test season again! Everyday we read and hear about federally and state mandated testing in our schools. Annual tests for every child in reading and math in grades 3 through 8, plus one in high school, have been a centerpiece of federal education law since 2002. Since then many more have been added including Math and Science End of Course tests (EOC) that must be passed in order to graduate. We’ve seen the multitude of acronyms designating different assessments roll through: WASL, MSP, HSPE, ELA CCR, COE, WELPA and many, many more.

Another confusing aspect of all of this testing is how it’s done. There are paper and pencil tests in which students have an actual test booklet that is held under lock and key before and after the test session. There are computer driven tests, some of which even adapt as the student is taking them. There are OSPI-Developed Assessments in Social Studies, The Arts, Health and Fitness and Educational Technology. These were formerly called Classroom Based Assessments (CBAs) which are multi-stepped tasks or projects aligned to specific state standards which target skills and knowledge necessary for engaged, informed citizenship. OSPI-Developed Assessments can be given at any time of the year although they are typically used as a culminating or summative assessment of learning that has occurred during a particular unit.

There is yet another aspect to take into account. The graduation requirements, type of tests as well as the standards and test components are changing year to year. The Class of 2015 must pass the Biology EOC in order to graduate, while the class of 2016 will take the test but it is not a graduation requirement. The target our students are shooting for, and our teachers are teaching to, frequently change.  Keeping abreast of these changes, adapting curriculum and dissecting the differing tests requirements has become a major test component.

Are these assessments worth the time and trouble? Absolutely! These data help districts and schools decide which teaching practices and curricula best support student understanding of the Washington State Learning Standards. They also give families valuable information about how well their child is doing and where additional help might be needed. The new Smarter Balance tests will also be used to help students be placed in the correct college classes without having to take costly remediation classes 

What can you do to help your student successfully navigate this imposing minefield? Well, all the things we’ve talked about for years: Good attendance, parental and student attention to grades, homework and work habits, sleep, and nutrition. Did I mention hydration? Make sure your student goes over any materials from practice tests the instructors may have given them, but DO NOT study all night! Finally, help them get at least 6 hours of sleep before the test (normally 8 hours of sleep a night is recommended but if they are short on time, get at least 6 hours so that they'll be well rested enough to focus during the test).

Testing is an important aspect of education. It helps us know where we are, where our holes are and where we need to improve. Our job is to show what we know.

Contact Info: Dave Vetter, 360-942-3415 option 2,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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Go Gulls!!!

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You can update your contact information online here. If you don't have your district login and password, contact Kristi at 942-3415, option 4. Alternatively, you may email  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

K12 Alerts 
Patented (U.S. Patent No. 8,180,274) 
K12 Alerts  

 
2015-16 Academic Calendar Approved PDF Print E-mail

Click here to download the 2015-16 Academic Calendar.

 
March News You Can Use PDF Print E-mail

Changes In Testing

With spring around the corner, students are now becoming familiar with the new Washington State standardized testing. For kids, the test will include new structures and online/electronic tools that must be learned to show their full potential. For adults, this means new language, testing formats, and scoring. Here is a general overview of the new changes that will impact students at Raymond Elementary.

Students will take the Smarter Balanced Assessment, which is used to identify if students are meeting Common Core State Standards. These standards are common across most states in the USA. Students will be taking electronic tests on Mathematics and English/ Language Arts. While there are several standards for each grade, there are 4 “claims” for each subject.

Math

1.)  Students can explain and apply mathematical concepts and interpret and carry out mathematical procedures with precision and fluency.

2.)  Students can solve a range of complex well-posed problems in pure and applied mathematics, making productive use of knowledge and problem solving strategies.

3.)  Students can clearly and precisely construct viable arguments to support their own reasoning and to critique the reasoning of others.

4.)  Students can analyze complex, real-world scenarios and can construct and use mathematical models to interpret and solve problems.

English/Language Arts

1.)  Students can read closely and analytically to comprehend a range of increasingly complex literary and informational texts.

2.)  Students can produce effective writing for a range of purposes and audiences.

3.)  Students can employ effective speaking and listening skills for a range of purposes and audiences.

4.)  Students can engage in research/inquiry to investigate topics, and to analyze, integrage, and present information.

Both subjects have a three-part test that consists of a computer adaptive test, classroom activity, and a performance task. The computer adaptive test will adapt based on correct/incorrect answers to provide great accuracy with student ability levels. After a short classroom activity coordinated by the teacher, students will complete a performance task. This portion has students apply their knowledge by answering questions centered on a common topic or problem.

All 3 rd through 6 th graders will take the Smarter Balanced Test in both math and ELA. 5 th grade students will also take the Science MSP (Measurement of Student Progress) electronically. This is the only test that hasn’t changed from the previous year. Testing will begin in mid-late march and carry through May. Visitwww.smarterbalanced.org for additional information and practice. 

Contact Info: Chris Cady, 360-942-3415 option 1,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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Procrastination

In the musical You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, Charlie has a book report due. He sings in a hesitant, scared voice: “If I start writing now…when I’m not really rested…it could upset my thinking which is not good at all…I’ll get a fresh start tomorrow…and it’s not due till Wednesday…so I’ll…have all of Tuesday unless…something should happen…Why does this always happen…I should be outside playing…getting fresh air and sunshine…I work best under pressure and there’ll be lots of pressure if I…wait till tomorrow…I should start writing now but if I…start writing now when I’m not really rested…it could upset my thinking…which is not good at all.” I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard a version of this from a student!

I’m a procrastinator. I know it. “I can return that phone call later.” “There will be time to finish this task tomorrow…at least before this weekend.”  Does this ring a bell? It’s a talk we all have with ourselves from time to time. Try to find someone who hasn’t procrastinated or grappled with putting off a task they know needs to be attended to. You will struggle to do so.

Surprisingly, there’s a scientific reason for this! Procrastination is so relatable, so universal, because the human brain is wired for it. Science explains that Charlie Brown’s struggle is sparked between two parts of the mind when it’s faced with a distasteful activity: a battle of the limbic system (the part of the brain that tells you to pull your hand away from a flame and avoid unpleasant tasks) and the prefrontal cortex (the internal “planner” that tells you to get the job done). When the limbic system wins, and that’s pretty often, the result is putting off for tomorrow what could (and should) be done today.


There are many great strategies for dealing with procrastination. Attack the hardest task when your energy is fresh and you give yourself the strongest chance of success. Doing otherwise can have a damaging domino effect. Putting off the dreaded item on your list saps your strength as you spend more time and energy dreading the task than it would have taken to get it done. Attack your biggest, most dreaded job first thing and the rest is downhill. Another trick to overpowering procrastination is to assess your day and your tasks at lunchtime. By waiting until the end of the day you’re not only out of time to do anything about it, but you feel as if you failed. Often you will hear me use the phrase, “It’s about what we can do, not what we can’t.” What I mean by that is to not look at a forest and say I’ll never get it done. See one tree and cut it down. If that’s too much, cut three branches. It’s about what you can do, not what you can’t. Finally, plan a “Get ‘er done” Day. Take that list of deeds and tasks that you’ve been putting off or ignoring, start out first thing in the morning and dedicate the day to checking them off your list. I find that the more I do the greater my momentum becomes. It’s pretty cool when after a bit you look back at that list you’ve been dreading and it’s disappeared.

Don’t allow procrastination to define you. Take charge of your tasks. No need to pick just one tactic. Have them all in your arsenal so you’re ready to handle whatever obstacle your battling brain might toss in your path.

Contact Info: Dave Vetter, 360-942-3415 option 2,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 
RHS Fight Song Recordings For You! PDF Print E-mail

For those who are interested (and who wouldn't be?), here is a recorded copy of the RHS fight song. Additionally, if you'd like to use a copy as a ringtone, try this out!

(The full fight song is an "mp3" file that you can drop into iTunes and sync to your device. The ringtone is an "m4r" file that can be installed on an iPhone in the same way. If you have a different kind of device, you should be able to conduct an Internet search and determine how to install them.)

Enjoy!!

 
Social Networking Tips PDF Print E-mail

This document from the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction offers some help for students and parents regarding using technology safely and responsibly.

 
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