Flyers and other important information.
Principal’s Message: Growth Mindset vol. 1
One of my most vivid memories from high school was seeing my report card from first semester in ninth grade. I wasn’t surprised by my B- in PE (I never really put in 100% effort), nor my A in history (It was always my favorite subject).
It was the D+ in Geometry that felt like a punch to the gut.
The fourth letter of the alphabet has no business here, I thought to myself. Math is supposed to be easy. I was mad, and so were my parents. You name the privilege, I lost it. I was not a happy camper.
Initially, I wanted to give up. “Please put me back in Algebra,” I begged my parents. They wisely said no. My wonderful teacher, Ms. Slack, sat me down and taught me one of the most valuable lessons I would ever learn. “Geoff,” she said, “very few mathematicians are naturally good at every type of math. Most of us just aren’t wired like that. You’re not good at Geometry, yet. Remember that last word: yet. With practice, you will be.”
Parents, when you look at your child’s report card sometime next week, you may see a grade or two on there that makes you want to scream. Resist the urge and keep calm. When you sit down and talk with your teen, listen for the tell-tale signs of a “fixed mindset”, or the idea that one is born basic qualities and skills that cannot be changed. Sentences like, “I’m not a math person” or “I’ll never be good at writing” absolutely must be countered with “You’re not good at math YET” and “You’re not great at writing YET, but you will be if you keep practicing.” Adopting a “growth mindset”, or the belief that basic abilities can be developed through dedication hard work, has been shown repeatedly to improve student outcomes.
Over the next few weeks, I will be writing more about the theme of Growth Mindset and the related ideas of “failing forward” and “embracing mistakes”. But, don’t wait up for me. Start growing your student’s mind (and your own) right now!
Panther Paw and Stars
This week, all students were given the opportunity to fill out a “Panther Paw Petition” to earn a special blue and gold paw badge and gold stars to pin on that badge. The “Panther Paw and Stars” are proud symbols of participation in extracurricular activities and community service. Our graduates proudly display these badges during their 8th grade graduation ceremony. Encourage your child to apply!
T1 Awards Ceremonies Invitation
All families are invited to our Trimester 1 Awards Ceremonies, which are taking place on Monday, November 24. The Sixth Grade ceremony starts at 1:30 in the MUR, and the Seventh and Eighth Grade ceremonies start at 2:15 in the MUR and gym, respectively. We will be honoring our Paws and Stars winners, Pillars Awards, Honor Roll recipients, and others.
Reports cards emailed home next week
We will no longer be automatically mailing home a paper copy, but you can still request one by coming in to the office starting on November 24.
Save the Date: Books Inc shopping event on December 2
Come and enjoy a night of holiday shopping at Books Inc, Castro St. from 6-9p.m on Tuesday, December 2. Twenty percent (20%) of all store purchases bought during this time will be donated to Crittenden. Bring your family, friends & neighbors. For parents: Cheese & wine will be served.
From the District Office: Standards vs. Curriculum
Standards are expectations that define what students need to know and be able to do. For instance, we expect students to know that 2+2=4, and why. Curriculum is the resources and materials used to teach students to learn that 2+2=4, and why. One could use a football analogy to explain the difference. A standard is the game rule that you need ten yards to gain a first down. Curriculum provides all of the options available to the team on offense to achieve the first down.
In education terms, decisions about standards are made at the state level, defining for teachers, school leaders and parents what students are expected to know by the end of the year. Curriculum decisions, including which resources and programs to use, are made by local districts. If you want to learn more about state of curriculum in California and MVWSD please visit the Common Core for Parents page on the District website: http://www.mvwsd.org/educational-services/common-core-state-standards and click on FAQs.
The Educational Services Department is offering a series of educational opportunities for parents to learn more about the CCSS. The next session will be on January 14th. More information will be sent soon.
8th Grade Washington DC - Philadelphia- New York trip June 10-15 2015
Registration is now open for the 8th grade trip to the East Coast. This will visit many interesting sites in Washington DC, Philadelphia and New York and is bound to be an amazing experience that your child will never forget! Parents are also welcome to join the group.
An initial deposit of $200 is required by December 12. This is refundable if fewer than 15 people register by next Wednesday, November 26th. Further information on the tour and how to register is contained in the Tour Paperwork Packet. You can also contact Dallas Veitch (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have questions.
LAHS Marching Band performs FREE this Saturday, Nov. 20!
Curious about Marching Band in the high schools? Love fun music and visual spectacle? You are invited to Fall Finale, at the Los Altos High School football field.
At 11:30 a.m. the award-winning 2014 Band will perform their show "House of Cards". Watch for the magic trick that opens the show! Cheer on Crittenden alumni - you will see familiar faces from CMS band and orchestra!
Arrive early for the best parking and seats. Browse the bake sale and silent auction. It's a great opportunity to meet the warm Instrumental Music community at LAHS. Hope to see you there!