Updated Parent Conference Reports

November Calendar Notes

No School Monday, November 11 – Veterans Day

Early Dismissal Days (12:40 Dismissal – Lunch will be served)

  • Tuesday, November 12          (K-6 only)
  • Wednesday, November 20      (K-8)
  • Wednesday, December 4        (K-12)
  • Tuesday, December 10           (K-8)

Updated Parent Conference Reports (Gr. 1-5)

Parent conferences begin in Grade K-5 on Tuesday November 12 and run through early December.   Conferences provide an opportunity for parents and teachers to take stock of how a child is doing and to identify goals for a child’s continued learning and development.  Conferences are an important way for you to be, in the words our school vision: “active, involved, and well-informed partners in the learning process.”

Parents in grades 1-5 receive a written narrative conference report about their child’s performance.   Teachers review the report with you and discuss your child’s progress, along with goals or next steps for continued learning.

This fall, we are phasing in a new approach called “standards-based reporting” that is intended to provide you with more specific information about your child’s growth in terms of Brookline’s Learning Expectations.  The new form asks teachers to assess student performance against a specific and observable set of grade level expectations and end-of-year standards.

For 2013-14, you will see changes in two areas (The other areas of the Conference Report will be updated in 2014-15). This year, the Mathematics section reflects new learning expectations that are aligned with the updated Massachusetts Mathematics Curriculum Frameworks. The form will include specific standards for updated content. For example:

  • Gr. 3 Operations & Algebraic Thinking:  Represent and solve problems involving multiplication and division.

Each grade level also includes two standards of mathematical practice:

  • Makes sense of problems and perseveres in solving them.
  • Communicates mathematical reasoning and ideas using words, numbers, and/or pictures.

The second updated area is “Work Habits and Skills.”  The skills included on the form are foundational ones that students can learn and develop to prepare them for life-long learning.  As students practice these skills, they form habits of thinking and approaching problems in a productive way (in other words:  habits of mind!).  Here are two examples from the Gr. 3 form:

  • Productive & Responsible: Perseveres at tasks to reach a satisfactory outcome.
  • Critical Thinker:  Connects new information to prior knowledge and experience.

The goal of the new conference form is “to provide parents with a clear, consistent picture of where their children are with respect to the learning goals in the Brookline Learning Expectations.”  We hope you find these changes informative and helpful.

Rick Rogers
rick_rogers@brookline.k12.ma.us

P.S.   Some of above information is drawn from a more detailed “Parent/Guardian Overview” that will be provided to parents.

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