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PTA Founder’s Day Awards

PTA Founder’s Day Awards photo
Congratulations to the following award winners of the Tooker Avenue PTA Founder’s Day:
Founder’s Day: Meredith Crevoiserat & Mary Famoso-Rueda
Teacher In Excellence: Christine Lambert
Student Advocate: The Math and Reading Intervention Team (Paula Bedford, Tina O'Boyle, Krista Shah, Christine Lambert)
Honorary Life Award: Christine Burke

Curricular Updates and Enhancements

Curricular Updates and Enhancements photo
Curricular Updates and Enhancements photo 2
In January, the New York State Education Department received approval for a new education plan that was required as part of the Every Student Succeeds Act. As part of this approval process, NYSED has been making changes to the entire K-12 curriculum. These changes – NYS Next Generation Learning Standards – are focused on revising math and English language arts education. 

Educators are being asked to help all students become lifelong readers and writers and NYSED has revised many of the reading and writing standards for classroom teachers. In addition, literacy-based instructional practices have been incorporated into all of the science and social studies classrooms. In math, standards were revised or moved to different grade levels with a focus on increasing student fluency. Last year, NYSED also made changes to the K-12 science standards, mirroring the practices of scientists and engineers through the implementation of hands-on activities in class. 

“Here in West Babylon, we are making certain that all of our students are getting the very best education in every subject area,” said Scott Payne, executive director of curriculum and instruction. “In response to all of these changes, this month we are pleased to share some of the exciting curricular work that is taking place in all our schools.”

Computer-based instructional tools

Parents may have noticed their children coming home and signing on to many of the online educational programs offered both in and out of the classroom. One literacy-based program is comprised of two separate programs called Raz-Kids and Reading A-Z. These programs allow students to read books online based on their interest as well their reading level. It also allows them to answers questions about what they have read and builds vocabulary and acquisition skills through guided quizzes.  

In math, students have access to an online program called Math IXL.  This web-based program allows students to practice specific math problems that are either assigned by their teacher or picked specifically based on their ability.

I-Ready.com is another online resource used by elementary and junior high school students. This program uses educational lessons and games to build student skills in math and ELA. Students earn points and reach milestones as they complete lessons that are either assigned by their teacher or are simply completed for extra credit. Not only are these games fun, but they help teachers get balanced data to help build upon needed skills for students.

Many JHS and SHS courses offer online supplements to enhance the textbooks used in class. Seventh-grade health, courses in science and math and much of the social studies curriculum are featured online. 

“If you see your child watching videos as part of the Discovery Ed website, they may actually be doing homework or getting extra credit, as much of our district’s social studies content is presented in multimedia form,” Payne said.

STEM Skills

“Here in West Babylon, we are very excited for our students to explore the many STEM skill sets,” Payne said. “In our K-8 schools, we have begun creating makerspaces. These spaces are collaborative work areas in part of our libraries that allow students to create projects or designs using their imagination and creativity. One key aspect is allowing students to work together. This creative and collaborative practice is at the core of helping to prepare our students for 21st-century skills in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.” 

In K-6 library media classes, students are learning to code using Ozobot or Dash-and Dot robot kits. These kits guide students through the basic concepts of coding and allow students to program robots to perform different tasks and complete challenges. 

In grades 8-12, a new set of science research courses has been added.  Currently offered in eighth grade, this course will be offered to all students next year at the high school and is designed to teach students how to design and create scientific experiments while enhancing their problem-solving skills. Students will learn to publish their discoveries and will make formal presentations on what they have learned. The goal of these courses is to connect students to real-world scientists and engineers, which will allow them to work in the field to conduct their own research as part of an extended internship. 

“We are also offering two opportunities for STEM enrichment,” Payne said. “Our after-school STEM SCOPE program will be starting soon at each of our elementary schools. This summer, we will be offering a weeklong science camp for all students that will be housed in-district at one of our elementary schools.”

In addition, Payne said, the district will be looking at adopting a new K-5 math curriculum and next year, will be looking at changes in the K-8 science program. In both cases, this selection process will involve building principals from every elementary building forming a team of teachers, administrators and parents. 
 

VIDEO: Tooker PARP

Tooker PARP photo

Tooker Avenue participated in Pick A Reading Partner in March with an array of different literacy activities.Check out the video:

Leprechaun Traps

Students in Mrs. Kozak/Miss Gorman's third grade class at Tooker Avenue made leprechaun traps incorporating two or three simple machines for a science project.

Easter Scavenger Hunt

Students in Mrs. Goodwin's class at Tooker Avenue went on a hunt for sight words hidden around the room. The sight word bags contained a special surprise filled with Easter candy!

ENL Learners

ENL learners at Tooker Avenue are studying the letter Q. They learned it is an extremely reliable letter but can be redundant. It doesn’t make its own sound, which can make it a difficult letter for kindergartners to sound out.

BNL Elementary Science Fair Winners

BNL Elementary Science Fair Winners photo
Tooker Avenue students Philip Consentino III (first grade), Lia DeGennaro (third grade) and Max Mueck (fourth grade) were recently named winners in the Brookhaven National Laboratory Science Fair.

Tooker SCOPE Flyer 2018

Attachments:

Learning About Electricity

Tooker Avenue students are having fun while they learn. Check out these fourth-grade students learning about current electricity through song.

Tooker Students Try to Escape

Tooker Students Try to Escape photo

Lynnmarie Gendron’s fifth-grade students at Tooker Avenue Elementary School participated in an escape room experience on Feb. 2. The teams worked together to solve puzzles and math problems that involved context clues. Once the team correctly answered the problem, they had the four-digit code to open each treasure chest. The goal was to figure out the combination to the key chest, which allowed the team to escape the classroom.

Tooker Celebrates 100 Days of Learning Fun

Tooker Celebrates 100 Days of Learning Fun photo
Tooker Celebrates 100 Days of Learning Fun photo2
Dressed in their pajamas, kindergarten students at Tooker Avenue Elementary School celebrated the 100th day of school in mid-February. The students created projects using 100 items, read “100 Hungry Ants” and “100th Day Worries,” designed booklets by stamping their way to 100 and counted to 100 by 10s and ones. The kindergartners also enjoyed a 100th  day ice cream party courtesy of the Parent-Teacher Association.

Junior FBI Agents Crack the Case

Junior FBI Agents Crack the Case photo
The FBI agents in Mrs. Gendron's class at Tooker Avenue Elementary were broken up into teams. Each team was given a historical mystery to solve. They discussed the clues, wrote and organized notes using inference and critical thinking skills. Each team was able to solve the mystery.

Second-Graders Take Second in Poster Contest

Second-Graders Take Second in Poster Contest photo
Second-graders Brandon Krutys (left) and Bradyn Lewis from Tooker Avenue Elementary School were recently named second-place winners in the West Babylon Fire Department’s annual fire prevention poster contest. They are pictured with Tooker Avenue Principal Charles Germano and second-grade teacher Annmarie Ayerle. 

Reading Together

At Tooker Avenue Elementary School, Mrs. Lambert's fourth- and fifth-grade reading students celebrated National Read Across America Day on March 2 by reading aloud to first- and second- grade students.

Random Acts of Kindness

Random Acts of Kindness photo
Random Acts of Kindness photo 2
First graders in Laura Fitzgerald’s class at Tooker Avenue Elementary School celebrated February with random acts of kindness. Students filled a heart with their names for each act of kindness. 

2018-19 Budget Preparations Underway

2018-19 Budget Preparations Underway image
The administration has presented its first draft of the proposed 2018-19 school budget and has discussed anticipated revenues, state aid estimates and the proposed tax levy during recent Board of Education meetings. 

According to Michele Psarakis, executive director for finance and operations, the district’s goals for the 2018-19 school year include maintaining all student programs while remaining within the state-mandated tax levy cap. 

The Board of Education encourages residents to become informed about the district’s proposed 2018-19 spending plan by attending the scheduled budget workshops and public hearings. Community members are encouraged to cast their vote on May 15 to help determine the future of the district.

Tuesday, March 13: Board of Education meeting; board review/discussion of budget draft No. 2 development, 7 p.m.     

Tuesday, March 27: Presentation of budget draft No. 2, 7 p.m. 
     
Tuesday, April 10: Board of Education meeting; final review and adoption of the 2018-19 proposed budget, 7 p.m.

Tuesday, May 1: Board of Education meeting; public hearing of 2018-19 proposed school budget, 7 p.m.
                       
Tuesday, May 15: School budget vote and trustee election, 7 a.m.–9 p.m.
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