Friday, January 31, 2014

Student Highlights
Technology in the classroom
Students are enjoying using technology in the classroom!  Here are a few ways that students use technology to enhance and demonstrate their learning.  Second grade students had questions that they drafted, read by scientists in Antarctica in a podcast that aired worldwide.  Children then shared what they learned by creating stories using a program called Puppet Pals.

Third grade students are practicing their reading strategies when reading online, age appropriate news articles on Tween Tribune and URL codes.  Students also track their questions and thinking using Padlet.

In the intermediate grades students collaborate with peers and their teacher using Edmodo and Google documents.

Technology is a fun, motivating and essential tool that enhances our lessons.
Golden Ticket Winners Show their Bronco Pride!

Upcoming Events:
·      School Advisory Meeting – Tuesday, February 4 @ 5:30
·      Valentine’s Parties – Thursday, February 13
·      No School / Teacher Professional Development Day – Friday, February 14
·      Sock Hop – Friday, February 21
·      Academy of Arts of Gold Rush will be offered on Thursday afternoons (not Tuesdays as noted in Thursday folders).

·      Please register your incoming kindergartener for the 2014-2015 school year in the main office
·      TCAP Testing schedule is below. Please note the dates your children will be testing and schedule outside appointments at other times.
3rd grade Reading: Feb11 and 12.
3rd grade Writing, Math: Mar 4, 5, 11 and 12.
4th – 5th grade Reading, Writing, Math: Mar 4, 5, 6, 11, 12
Make-up date: Mar 13

Safety Tips:
·      Please do not turn left when leaving the parking lot.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Highlights of the Week
Teachers review students’ data

Teachers are currently reviewing students’ growth in the areas of reading and math.  They are using assessments including the Daily Reading Assessment (DRA) and Measures of Academic Progress, or the MAP MATH assessment to reflect on how much students’ have grown since the beginning of the school year.  DRA and MAP are used in combination with a variety of other classroom assessments to evaluate growth.  Teacher teams are currently reflecting on the instructional practices that contributed to student growth and they are brainstorming additional ways to provide quality enrichment and intervention.

Information Writing

Students in grades 1-5 are currently working on an informational writing unit where they write about real topics.  Students in the primary grades write about topics that they have expertise in.  They also learn to write like scientists.  In the intermediate grades, students are learning how to research social studies topics and use the information to eventually create their own thesis in fifth grade.  We are excited to be teaching students how to write like scientists and historians!  Check out students’ work below.

Second grade student Aiden wrote like a scientist when he documented his experiment with forces and motion.  He went on the design his own experiment and then wrote about his experimental design and the outcome.  

Kate, a fifth grade student, used her research on colonial America to draw conclusions about the past.  Fifth graders will go on to create a thesis on colonial America using the information they gather.

Tips for Drop Off or Pick Up
·      Please remain in your car during drop off and pick up
·      Please do not pull around cars while in the loop
·      Your patience is appreciated!

·      Register your incoming kindergartener in the office today!  We are currently accepting applications for the 2014-2015 school year.

Upcoming Events

School Advisory Meeting – Thursday, January 30th @ 5:30

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Enjoy the long weekend with your family!

* Please contact the office to register your incoming kindergartener for the 2014-2015 school year.
* Purchase your yearbook online through March 15. Click here to order today.
* The student directory is posted on the school website under the parent directory tab. The username is GREDirectory  and the password is digger (lowercase ).
* The first battle of the books competition will take place on Tuesday, January 21st, at 8:15 in the library.

Thank You!
* Thank you Mrs. Binder for providing the staff with coffee! We appreciate the treat!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Click here to here fifth grade students talk about what's new at Gold Rush in the month of January.

Student Highlight
Spelling Bee
Seventeen fourth and fifth graders participated in Gold Rush’s spelling bee on Friday.  All of the students did an exceptional job and we congratulate them all!  Dallas will represent Gold Rush at the District level. 

2013-2014 School Goal Update
Winter is a great opportunity to provide you with an update on our school goals.  As you recall, we used our 2013 state TCAP data to create our school improvement plan.   Our data showed many celebrations, including our continued ability to meet academic achievement goals in all content areas.  Gold Rush also continued to meet growth targets as outlined by the state.   As part of best practice we did identify areas where we could improve and selected them as our goals for this year.  In addition to lowering class sizes in grades 3-5, we focused on meeting students’ individual needs in writing and math.

Teachers across grades K-5 have been studying national expert Lucy Calkin’s writing curricula since the beginning of the year.  While finishing the initial unit on narrative writing, classroom teachers planned for a new unit of study focused on informational writing.  Informational writing focuses on nonfiction topics and allows students to generate new ideas about real topics.  This is what we do in real life! Teachers are really excited to start teaching this genre of writing this month. 

This month we are also measuring how each child is progressing in the area of math.  In the beginning of the year all students were given the MAP math assessment.  We are currently administering this assessment again to students in grades 2-5 to ensure that they are making appropriate growth.  In addition to providing math information sessions at all grade levels, each grade level identified additional enrichment and intervention opportunities.  Teachers will use this data to plan for each student for the rest of the year. 

I will continue to provide math and writing updates in future blog entries.  As always, please do not hesitate to contact the principal directly if you would like additional information regarding our TCAP data, school goals or curricula initiatives.

Focus for the Teacher Workday on 1/17
The district is hosting a day of learning for all teachers.  Keynote speaker, Marc Prensky, will talk to the district about digital natives.  Teachers will then attend different sessions on 21st century skills, differentiation, reading and more!

6th Grade Parent Orientation Night
Cimmaron is hosting a parent orientation evening on Wednesday, January 15th for all current 5th graders.  The schedule is as follows:
* 6:00-6:30 Advanced Placement meeting @ the Library (optional)
* 6:30-7:30 Registration information @ the Commons

·      Please follow the no left turn when exiting the parking lot.
·      Pre Registration forms for 2014 2015 will be in Thursday Folders this week. Please fill out and return by 1/24/2014 so we can plan for next year's enrollment.
·      Check your child’s report card again for comments and the performance descriptors.
·      Pre-school Roundup Registration is taking place at the end of January- Registration forms and additional information can be found online at  You can also pick up forms at your elementary school, or at the ECE Centers. Registration paperwork must be returned in person to the ECE Centers.
·      Register your child for kindergarten for next year in the main office.

We are looking for photos for the yearbook.  If you have any great shots from classroom or school events please email them to or drop a CD off in the PTO mailbox in the front office.  If possible please include information regarding the name of the event and students.

PTO Community Night
·      Come to Chick-Fil-A on January 16 and part of the proceeds will be donated to the school!  Feel free to come in your pajamas and participate in the pillow fight with the cow!

Upcoming Family & Community Events
·      National Western Stock Show, Jan 11- 26
·      Denver Nuggets- Jan 25, 7:00PM
·      Peter Pan, the Musical- Feb 1 7:30PM

Please click here for more information.