2/26 PTA Mtg Minutes & Speaker Handouts

PTA Meeting Minutes
February 26,2014


-Thank you for coming to Valentine’s Day Dance
1) UFT report
2) Principal’s Report
3) Parents Coordinator’s report
4) Updates: Arts Day; School Garden
5) Guest Speaker: Suzanne Bouffard, PhD
UFT report Mr. Michael- No news on teacher’s contract

-Mr. Artie- The SEC (social emotional committee) completed the ” I Love Me Because….” project. The SEC did a wonderful job embracing this activity. Our school was granted an award for our strength in this area.

-The state has been easing a little on the common core curriculum.

-On March 18 and April 8 at 8:45 am, teachers will be presenting to parents on the common core instructional shifts.
-Go Math- there will be a workshop to familiarize parents on how to help their child.
-Testing- is coming up.
ELA on April 1,2,3
Math on April 30 and May 1, 2
Science testing is at the end of May.

-There will be an interview prep for 4th graders to help with entrance into middle school.

-Arts Day:March 29, 2014. If you’re a class parent: please email the class to encourage parents to sign up. Arts Day sign up genius: please sign up to work a table.

Parking signs have changed on Carroll and 1st st. No Parking on Carroll St. in front of the school. This area will be for drop off only. Vicky Cernos was instrumental in making these changes. On 1st St., there is no parking during the school day in order for buses to line up and pick up/drop off children safely.

Bike racks will be installed on 1st St by end of June to allow for bike parking and to prevent people from parking on sidewalk. The school is working with people from Golden Touch Car Wash and Con Ed. to eliminate cars from parking on the sidewalk altogether.

Arts Day is on the same day as the third grade test prep.

Garden Committee-planning meeting this Friday to work on the design of the beds. For more information look on the website, Inclusions- Garden Committee.

May 10 :Silent Auction is an adults only event. Looking for items to auction off. For example: an author can do a book reading.

The Fun Run, which is headed by Samantha Cassidy is also on May 10 in the morning.

Guest Speaker:
Susanne Bouffard, PhD
Harvard Graduate School of Education
10 Tips for Kinder Kids

– Kindness is most important- no matter what.
Tell your child, “The most important thing to me is that you are kind.”

-We should prioritize the messages we send to our kids. Pay attention to your words.

-Hard work and achievement is of high importance to our kids these days. There is less focus on kindness.
-Anxiety, depression and bullying is prevalent

-There are decades of research that show if one feels supported they will achieve more.

-Social -emotional learning is the ability to manage thoughts and behaviors.
How you treat yourself matters.
How do you label your emotions?
How to express them?
How do you manage difficult feelings?
The social piece is seeing someone else’s perspective and how you read other people’s feelings.
The ability to focus on others and yourself is a big part of social emotional strategies.
Empathy- involves all these pieces.

-Understanding and caring about other’s perspective- help kids care about other people and themselves even if others are different.
-You can promote this by modeling this at school and at home. For example: if you volunteer and do community work but then talk badly about other people, what message are you sending home?
-Remind children to increase their awareness of kind acts they performed during the day.
-Ask yourself, are you as concerned with them when they are kind or if they achive something in school? Reinforcing the kind acts are important.
-Expect and insist your kids are respectful.
If you don’t like the way they said something, you can say, ” That is not kind. Please say it again using a different tone of voice.”
-Model being respectful for them.

Circle of concern exercise:
Draw a circle of close friends, then draw a circle of people they’re not close with. How does it make the child feel? Do they see the need to respect the people they’re not close with? Do they consider them as a apart of our community? There are people who are invisible to them.

-Tell them to step out of comfort zone and step into courage zone. Give them courage to reach out to someone outside their circle of friends.
-Encourage kids to be grateful. Make it a daily ritual- ask them at the end of the night what they are grateful for.
-Both parents and teachers can model this behavior for them.
-Teach them to calm down:
Stop, breathe and think when frustrated. Try to calmly think through what is happening.

-Look to socially popular kids to help the not so popular kids . If they are a buddy to the less popular kid it can shift other’s perspective of that child.
-Mix it up day. Kids could sit with someone they usually don’t sit with

If there is not acceptable behavior occurring, a simple phrase like, “We don’t do that here please stop”, may help.
Teachers can use a kindness jar or kindness box.
Recommends book, “Have You Filled Your Bucket?”
-People may be unkind because they are angry about something.
-Label the behavior not the kid.
– There are books, board games and video games that will foster opportunities for children to express themselves.


Ten Tips p1

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