Sunday, March 17, 2019

Safety Matters

When I watch the news these days, I realize times have definitely changed since I was a child.  Mind you, I’m a grandma (albeit a young one)! Today, safety has become an important part of the culture of our schools and for life in general. Balancing safety while providing a productive learning environment that feels welcoming and open is challenging.  Albemarle County has done an excellent job working with our schools to make sure we are well prepared for an emergency. During our “Connecting Conversation” gathering on February 28th, county representatives; Dr. Nicholas King, Director of Student Services and Rosalyn Schmitt, Chief Operating Officer, shared an overview of Albemarle County School’s Safety Measures.

Stone-Robinson Elementary School, along with all the other county schools, has put in place regular preventive school checks, emergency plans and, practice drills. This Tuesday, March 19th, at 9:45 AM, we will participate in the “Tornado Preparedness Day”, a statewide Tornado Drill. To help us to create an efficient response during an emergency, we partnered with the Fire Department and the County Police Department, to walk our school and are now very familiar with the interior design.  They have also given us feedback to improve our current physical structures and safety procedures, which we’ve put in place.

Additionally, with guidance from the University of Virginia, we developed and implemented Code Ana, a school-based medical emergency response plan.  We also continue to have full access to a team of counselors and psychologists ready if needed, to support students and staff during a crisis.  It’s our hope that we’ll never have to enact any element of our crisis plan but, if we have to, we are prepared.

Lastly, please don’t forget to check the Lost and Found bin before March 29th.  You might discover some lost family treasures there! We plan to donate the leftover items during spring break.

Thank you all once again for your valued partnership and all your time devoted to support our school!

With much admiration and appreciation,

Ms. González

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Happy 2019!  Despite all of the weather delays and closings, it has been a very busy and productive January at Stone-Robinson Elementary.  Teachers and students have reconnected and classrooms have rebooted their community rules and expectations.  Midyear assessments have been completed and teachers are reflecting with colleagues on how to monitor and adjust as we work to support the continued growth for all of our students during the 2nd half of the school year.

This month, students in grades 3-5 had the opportunity to compete in the SRE Spelling Bee.  It was a fantastic competition that ended in a battle between four students before Creighton Doherty finally took the win.  Creighton will represent our school at the annual ACPS Spelling Bee on Monday, February 11th at 6:00pm at the County Office building.  All are invited to cheer him on!

We had a great turnout this year for Milk & Cookies night!  Families had fun learning and reading together.  The theme for the night was "Under the Stars" and included the inflatable StarLab Planetarium, a craft where kids could build the constellations, and even a telescope on the soccer field for viewing the starry night!  The night even included the debut of our first student published SRE newspaper!  Thank you to our intervention team and to all of our staff members who helped make this night so much fun for our families!



Also this month, students have been preparing for the Stone-Robinson Talent Show, which will take place on Sunday, February 10th, from 1:00-3:00pm.  Thank you to our PTO President, Mary Ellen Elias and our music teacher, Rachel Smith, for taking the lead on this event.  The students are so excited as it's a wonderful way for them to shine, sharing their passion and talents. We can't wait!

Monday, January 21, 2019

Be Safe, Be Kind and Include Others!

Happy Winter SRES families!

The last couple of weeks have been a strong reminder that winter is definitely here and with it, the realization we are at the end of our second quarter! At this mid-point of the school year it is our division’s practice to pause, reflect on our practices and formulate our next steps.  One of our School Improvement Plan goals this year revolves around strengthening social and emotional competencies. These past few months our staff has been engaging in professional development about socio-emotional learning (SEL) strategies and understanding its’ connection to the learning process. At the beginning of January we completed our third professional development session as part of our mid-year reflection and next steps.

Our SRE teachers participated in professional development workshops with an expert in the field.  We then implemented grade-level appropriate SEL lessons to address emotional, social and interpersonal skills.  Through this learning process we defined the following three pillars for our school: be safe, be kind and include others.  We now use these pillars to: help students navigate the social school environment, support their emotional well-being, use their strategies and, support them as they implement these new skills.

As we walk through our school, we are observing how many of our students are using these strategies and living the three pillars. We want our children to apply these lifelong skills in their everyday life, not just school. These skills have the potential to help them be successful in whatever they decide to do in life.  Modeling, conversations and reinforcement with the adults in their lives will help them internalize what they are learning in school. It takes a village!  

Monday, January 7, 2019

Happy New Year!

Greetings Stone-Robinson Families and happy 2019! I hope you all had a wonderful winter break with family and friends and on behalf of the entire staff, I'd like to thank you for the many ways you shared your appreciation and time with faculty, staff, and students during the holiday season and the many celebrations. It was a busy and enjoyable time for all!

This is our first full week back to school in the new year and we are thrilled, as I'm sure you all are, to be back in the routine of things.  Believe it or not, we are halfway through the school year.  Teachers and students will be busy over the next couple of weeks assessing and checking in on progress towards end of year goals.  The pace will pick up and it is most helpful if students are present, on time, and have had a good breakfast!  It's also most helpful when the weather cooperates! Let's hope for a calm winter with little disruption to our school days!  :)

Coming up this month on January 25th from 6:30-8:00 pm is our 3rd annual Milk & Cookies Night!  The theme this year is "Under the Stars" and we will actually have the Discovery Museum's  inflatable planetarium on site in the gym for the kids to explore along with lots of other fun family activities.  So mark your calendars and plan to join us for this wonderful evening celebrating the joy of reading!

We hope you'll also consider joining us for the next PTO meeting on Thursday, January 24th from 6:30-8:00 pm in the Stone-Robinson library.  It's a great way to stay connected with all that's happening in our school and to share your thoughts and ideas as we continue to work together in making this the best place for all to come and learn each day.  At our last PTO meeting, teacher leaders joined us to share student voices around the work we have been doing this year with Digital Citizenship and Social & Emotional Learning.  Check out the short video clips our students created to show what they've been learning:  Digital Citizenship Update   -   Social & Emotional Learning Update

And finally, we invite you to join us this Friday, January 11th at 8:00 am for our school wide morning meeting. This month, our 2nd graders will be taking the lead as we kick off the new year together.

As always, we appreciate you and your partnership in supporting our students at Stone-Robinson Elementary.  It truly is a great place to be and I am happy to be here with all of you. Happy New Year!

Kristen Williams 

Sunday, November 18, 2018

End of First Quarter

It is hard to believe that it is already November and we finished our first quarter!   Hopefully, by now you have been able to take a look at the pilot report card. We are really excited to share this! This video explains how to make sense of the new report card. The process of developing this new report card has been very involved and thoughtful.  Parent input is the next step in this process. Please send your comments with your child’s report card's envelope.

Last October our fourth and fifth graders had the honor and pleasure to meet Virginia’s former first lady, Dorothy McAuliffe, and other important people at the University of Virginia’s inauguration of the First Lady's Food Lab at Morven farms.  Stone-Robinson’s fourth and fifth graders will grow vegetables in a greenhouse at Morven and at the school’s garden and serve them in their cafeteria.

If you had a chance to attend the movies our students filmed at the Virginia Film Festival, you will know by know that we have some very talented students.  Who knows, we may have a few movie directors in the future!

A couple of weeks ago we had our school division’s professional development conference.  One of our parents, Carolyn Schuyler, Executive Director of Wildrock, was one of the presenters. She shared the importance of nature play and strategies to support our students.  It was an amazing chat! Did you know that there is evidence that spending time in the natural world has beneficial effects on humans’ physical and psychological health?

This past quarter we started implementing Digital Citizenship and Socio-Emotional Learning lessons. These lessons are teaching awareness and the understanding that our actions matter.  

We wish all a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday break.  Enjoy your time with your loved ones!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Fall Happenings

It's official, we have settled into the new school year and are quickly approaching the end of the first quarter. As we walk the hallways and visit classrooms throughout the day, it's apparent that students and teachers have established routines, built trusting relationships, and have come together as a collaborative community of learners.

The fall season has been busy ...  We began school-wide morning meetings, celebrated the official opening of our updated K-2 playground, and hosted community volunteers for the Day of Caring.  We have students who are taking initiative and participating in activities such as developing a news show that highlights learning and special events, writing a school newspaper, and participating in our SRE Community Service Club, just to name a few.  And during the month of October, as we recognize Anti-Bullying month, teachers have begun implementing the new K-5 Social-Emotional curriculum.  Be sure to ask your children about what they are learning. You can Click here to learn more about the competencies they will be introduced to over the next several weeks.

Looking ahead to November:

  • November 2nd, 5th, and 6th - No School for Students 
  • Week of November 5 - Parent-Teacher Conferences 
  • November 15 - Report Cards Open - 
  • November 19 - VIP Day 
  • November 20 - School-Wide Field Trip (Grades 1-5):  UVA Women's Basketball Game 
  • November 21-23 - Thanksgiving Holiday Break





Sunday, September 16, 2018

Thanks for a great start!

Greetings Stone-Robinson families and thank you for a great start to the school year.  By now, I hope you have all had the opportunity to connect with your child's classroom teacher and have taken part in a listening conference.  The purpose of these conferences, whether by phone or in person, is for parents and teachers to connect and for teachers to learn all they can about their students as they begin to establish new relationships and plan for a successful school year!

Creating a safe, inclusive, kind place for all children to come to each day is very important to us.  We want our students to be excited about coming to school everyday and to know that they are valued and respected members of our school community.  Your child's happiness and success is no doubt, a shared responsibility and partnership between home and school.  We promise to keep the lines of communication open and ask that you not hesitate to reach out to us should your child be experiencing any difficulties at school. Together, we can make school a positive and productive experience for all.

One of the ways we will be building upon our positive school climate this year is through a focus on  the development of social and emotional competencies and our role in explicitly teaching and modeling these competencies for our students.  Teachers have begun taking part in professional development and our goal is to engage families in this work as well.

This year, connected to our regularly scheduled PTO meetings, we plan to host a series of conversations connected to our school's goals. We hope you will join us for our first conversation at the September 27th PTO meeting at 6:00pm in the SRE library.  Carolyn Schuyler, an SRE parent and the Executive Director of Wildrock,  will be joining us to facilitate a conversation around the importance of play, the purpose and intentional design of the updates made to our PK-2 playground, and how all of this is connected to the social and emotional learning of our students.  Hope to see you there!

"Child-initiated play lays a foundation for learning and academic success. Through play, children learn to interact with others, develop language skills, recognize and solve problems, and discover their human potential. In short, play helps children make sense of and find their place in the world."   Carolyn Schuyler, SRE Parent and Executive Director of Wildrock