Tuesday, July 29, 2014

WHS Summer News (July 2014)

Summer day flying kites 

I hope everyone is enjoying their time away from WHS.  I wanted to share a few things with all of you as July comes to an end.
  • This summer I will be writing a blog series titled, “Before School Starts – To Do List” for students and parents.  The series will have 8 - 10 blog posts associated with it. The first post was published on 7/28.  

Before School Starts TO DO LIST #1 Fall Athletes get your paperwork IN

  • All classrooms at the HS have been cleaned and put back together.  The custodians really did a great job.
  • The technology infrastructure project is moving along at a good pace.  At the HS/MS complex, the MS wiring is almost complete and work on the HS should begin later this week.  
  • The HS Gym renovation is complete.  You can see before and after pictures here: http://whsprincipal.blogspot.com/2014/07/hs-gym-transformation.html
  • Supply orders, equipment, textbooks, etc. have all been coming in throughout the summer.
  • All of the open teaching positions have been filled.  We will have five new teachers on staff with us in September.
 Summer Reading Suggestions 
5 ways to Provide Parents a Window Into Your Classroom 

Thoughts and prayers for the family of fallen Waldwick Police Officer Chris Goodell.  Thanks to all the staff members that were able to come by WHS for the procession.  

Friday, April 4, 2014

WHS News - 4/3/14

It's almost Spring Break ...... Marking Period 3 ends today...... I just finished the Final Exam Schedule..... where did this year go?  Its been a very busy year for all of us but a lot has been accomplished and there is so much for us to be proud of.  I still feel the energy and passion when talking to staff members who are still creating and trying new ideas within their lessons.  Don't lose that!!   

April is Autism Awareness Month - On Friday, April 4, there will be a "Light It Up Blue Jean Day"  

Student Council has put together a "Spring Kickoff Week"
Monday - Disney Day
Tuesday - Twin Day
Wednesday - Switch it up Day
Thursday - Warrior Day (Pep Rally @ 2pm)
Friday - Beach Day

Congratulations to Danielle Kish and her husband Andor on the birth of their son, Brooks Parker.  Welcome to #warriornation

The Echo recently posted some new articles.  Check them out on the Echo Blog 

Final Exam Schedule - Draft 13-14 Exam Schedule 

PD Resources 

Great post on the differences between engagement and empowerment within your classroom.  Highly recommend you read this!  
The Myths of Technology - Technology equals Engagement via George Couros   

Looking to do more online quizzes or interactions with your students during class or at home. Here are two blogs posts with great resources via - Freetech4teachers.com

Quizbean Opens quiz bank for sharing


Monday, March 10, 2014

WHS News 3/10/14

Bye, Bye HSPA..... you have been good to us over the years, but it's time to move on.  Put away the #2 pencils and get working on the keyboards... The PARCC testing is here!!  Thank you to everyone who proctored over the three days of testing.  Big thank you to Mrs. Gastman for coordinating and organizing the three days of testing.  Also need to thank Mrs. Baskin and Mrs. Katz for helping out each day as well.

WHS will be field testing the Algebra 1 PARCC test on 3/25.  More details on this will be out shortly.  Classes will be running on a normal schedule during the field test.  Only students testing will have a modified schedule.

Time well spent!  I hope the PD time you had during testing worked to your benefit.  I heard a lot of positive comments coming out of the meeting related to CCSS /PARCC Implementation Plan.  Thank you to Mrs. Baskin and the Language Arts teachers for all their work on this project.  I also need to thank Mrs. Pastore and Ms. McCann for putting together the RST templates.
You can find the RST template on the bottom of the Language Arts webpage on the HS site.  I have uploaded them as word document and PDF's.
Link to RST Templates    

School News

Congratulations to Mike Clancy and his wife Sylvia on the birth of their third child, Noah Clancy, born on March 5.

Mrs. Kish's last day was Friday, March 7.  We have two teachers filling in for her.  One of the teachers might be a familiar face, Jennifer Edreos, who has been working in the Middle School for the past two years as a leave replacement and this year in a part-time role.  Taking over Mrs. Kish's AP English and Composition class will be Betsy Panico.  Mrs. Panico is a retired teacher who worked in the Northern Valley School District.

The cast and crew did an amazing job last week with their production of "Legally Blonde." Legally Blonde - Huge Success 

Recent Blog Posts/Tweets

Greenberg Center gets a new look - Thanks to the Booster Club
Minds Eye 2013-2014 Edition 

Good Reads/PD Resources 

Did you read "Teach Like a Pirate" this summer by Dave Burgess.  Would you like to hear Dave speak about his book?   Well, Dave is speaking this Thursday at Manville High School, NJ at 4:30pm.  You can read more about this event here: Pirate Event on 3/13

SAT Changes are coming in Spring of 2016
Redesigned SAT via The College Board
A new SAT Aims to Realign With Schoolwork via The Washington Post

Friday, February 21, 2014

WHS News - 2/21/14

Spring will be here soon!!

Sorry for the lack of posts the past two weeks.  I am going to try to catch everyone up on some WHS news with this post.  Some of the information is a bit old, but still important so I wanted to include it.

Mid-year evaluation meetings are almost over.  I only have one or two people left to meet with and should be done by Monday.  The process definitely took longer than we thought, but overall, we really think the process was beneficial to everyone and we all learned somethings along the way.  I wanted to thank the overwhelming number of staff members who really took the time to review the rubrics and honestly assess themselves.  Without honesty and self-reflection, there can be no growth.  We get to do this all again in April. Hopefully, staff now knows what the administration is expecting and areas you can work on.

School News 

Congratulations to Kristi and her husband, Mike, on the birth of their third daughter Gianna.   Welcome to #warriornation Gianna!

Filling in for Krsiti will be Mrs. Sharon Katz.  Mrs. Katz is an experienced high school guidance counselor with several years in the business.  She was a high school guidance counselor at Northern Valley Regional High School at Old Tappan.  She left to start a family a few years ago.  Mrs. Katz was a high school leave replacement counselor in Old Tappan last year as well.  Mrs. Katz is well versed in the complexities of the position and brings with her an enormous knowledge base that encompasses all aspects of being a successful high school counselor.  When you have time, stop by the Guidance Office and say hello. 
Congratulations to Josh and his wife, Erin on the birth of their son Bennett Charles Sussman.  Welcome to #warriornation Bennett!

Tonight the boys basketball team will play in the championship game of the Bergen Invitational Tournament @ Ridgewood High School at 7pm.  

HSPA Testing (March 4, 5 & 6)

Testing meeting for all proctors (Mandatory) – Wednesday, February 26

Testing Schedule 
Tuesday – Testing will be completed by 11:30 (move to period 5)
Wednesday & Thursday – Testing will be completed by 10:30 (Move to period 4)

Something new this year.......Delayed start for 9th, 10th and 12th Graders (The students don't know about this yet.  I will be speaking with them next week)

Tuesday 3/4
9am start for:   9th Grade (Sticks & Stones video/breakout sessions)
10am start for: 10th Grade (Implementing good teen safety driving habits) – location:  Cafeteria
12th Grade (Fire Safety - which focuses on dorm life) – location:  Little Theater

Wednesday 3/5 & Thursday 3/6

10am start for all 9th, 10th & 12th Graders 

Staff PD Time – All staff will get at least two hours of professional development time during the testing days.  Information on this will come from the supervisors and will be explained in more detail at the February 26 testing meeting.   

Recent Blog Posts 

Congratulations Cara Montella
Congratulations to Senior, Nicole Stahl 
January Student's of the Month 
Senior Night - Boys Basketball
Heart Screening @ WHS

Good Reads/PD Resources 

Mr. Ramiccio recently attended a workshop and one of the resources that was handed out gave great examples of "Depth of Knowledge" for levels and sample questions.  
DOK Resources 

The Global Teacher via George Couros


Saturday, January 25, 2014

Digital Learning Day

Over the past two years, many of you have taken part in Digital Learning Day.  It would be great if everyone found someway to take part this year.  Digital Learning Day allows all of us to try something new, take a risk, have fun learning and find different ways to incorporate technology.   

As in the past, I have created a Google Doc (Digital Learning Day 2/5/14 @ Waldwick HS) where I am asking teachers to post what they have planned for Digital Learning Day.  #DLWHS Doc 

For the teachers that use Twitter with their classes, we will be using the hashtag #DLWHS to highlight the events of the day. 

Interested teachers can find free tools and examples on the following website:

To officially register for Digital Learning Day and share what you have planned please go to: http://www.digitallearningday.org/events/create-an-event/

Friday, January 17, 2014

WHS Staff News - 1/17/14

School News Sometimes the administrative team feels like the picture above when dealing with observations (SOTELS).  As of January 17, 205 Classroom Observations have been completed.  As an Administrative Team, we have seen a lot of good lessons, engaging assignments, cool projects and teachers stepping out of their comfort zone to try new things.  The post conferences have created great conversation, self-reflection and hopefully an understanding that the Administrative Team is supportive and wants to help our teachers grow as educators.

Something to keep in mind - In the past you have heard the saying "TEACH Bell to Bell."  Instead of that, I want see "LEARNING Bell to Bell."  This is an area the Administrative Team has noticed, in some cases, needs work.  There are times when you need to break down a lab or pack up the lab cart; those are understandable.  What we don't want to see is kids packed up standing by the door, loud conversations unrelated to your class or students leaving class before the bell rings.

Professional Development Day - Monday, January 20
The "Edcamp" Model has come to Waldwick!!  Monday should be a great day of learning since you get to set your own agenda.  With over forty different presentations taught by fellow Waldwick educators, there are many options to choose from.  During the workshops, for those of you on twitter, please share what you are learning by using the hashtag #edcamping14.

PSAT Meeting

On Monday, January 20 during period 2 there will be a meeting for all sophomores and juniors who took the PSAT’s back in October.   Teachers should take attendance and escort the students to the little theater.  

MP 2
The End of Marking Period 2 is Friday, January 24.
Grading tab will be open as of 1/24 and will close on 1/29 at 9am
Remember - parent communication (Positive and for students struggling or failing)

Digital Learning Day is coming "Again" to Waldwick High School on February 5.  Mark your calendars and starting thinking about what your going to do with your classes.  Digital Learning Day will also be a Jean Day.   More information and resources will be posted soon.

WHS Principal's Blog  Posts 
From the Classroom - 21 day Positive Challenge
From the Classroom - Interactive Journalism Websites  
From the Classroom - Global Project on the Great Depression 
December Student's of the Month 

PD Resources 
5 helpful strategies for self-reflection via Justin Tarte ( @justintarte ). 

Thanks to everyone that gave blood today.