Curriculum News

Students selecting books.Students making bookmarks.Students in the DES libraryStudents and Ms. Schaffer in the MES libraryBeeler students at their school's Literacy Event


June Curriculum Corner

The Evesham Township School District recognizes the value of maintaining reading and math levels that students have acquired during the 2018-2019 school year.  To that end, the district will again be implementing a summer literacy and math project to provide engaging ways for students to not only practice reading and math skills, but more importantly encourage lifelong readers and mathematicians.  All of the projects are centered around student choice and were designed to be authentic in nature.  Project directions, choice boards, and summer reading log templates are posted on the district website at www.evesham.k12.nj.us under announcements.  These resources are also posted on all school websites under the student tab.  If students do not have access to technology, a hard copy of the projects can be requested from the school office.  The Evesham Township Public Library also has free computer access, if interested. 

New this year, each school will be hosting three summer literacy events at the school in our library-media center.  Flyers were sent home separately from each school with dates and times for the events. This is a great opportunity for students to visit the school over the summer, see some of our staff, return and check out books, and much more. The goal of these events is to promote summer reading and math, while celebrating choice and building school community.

Part of the literacy project includes one required read modeled off of the national campaign called One School, One Book.  This campaign aims to build a community of readers within our school as everyone – students, teachers, and even administrative staff – will be participating so that we can all reap the many benefits.  For all incoming elementary students, the story we have selected is available at both the primary and upper grade levels. The primary book is Best Friends: The True Story of Owen & Mzee by Roberta Edwards.  The upper elementary book is Owen & Mzee: The True Story of a Remarkable Friendship told by Isabella & Craig Hatkoff and Dr. Paula Kahumbu.  For all incoming middle school students, we have modified the concept of One School, One Book to include choice, so is now called One School, One Theme.  This allows middle school students to choose their one required reading from three books:  I Funny by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein, Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper, or The Perfect Score by Rob Buyea.  For a description of each title, visit our website.  A limited number of books are available at the schools to be checked out over the summer. 

Image result for best friends:  owen and mzee Image result for best friends:  owen and mzee
Image result for i funny Image result for out of my mind Image result for perfect score

Students reading to Kalli.Students with Isaac.Students with Valerie and her handler.Student reading to Gage.Student reading to Layla.Student with Libby.


District Spotlight:  Therapy Dog Program

Evesham Township School District implements a therapy dog program called Literacy and Leashes at each of the elementary schools. Each school has their very own dog and handler assigned to the building who works directly with the second grade students during their reading time. The district welcomed Kalli at Beeler, Isaac at DES, Valerie at Jaggard, Gage at MES, Layla at Rice, and Libby at Van Zant to initiate the program. The goal of this program is to build confidence and strengthen literacy skills in our students with these very special reading companions. All dogs used in the program are registered therapy dogs with volunteer handlers that have been approved through the ETSD as per board policy. The program is begins annually in September/October and lasts the duration of the school year. School and classroom expectations are part of the district’s second grade Health and RC Connections Curriculum. The trained handlers and their dog are volunteers and are in the schools approximately one hour per week. They rotate through each of the second grade classrooms so that students can expect a visit from the school’s assigned therapy dog a minimum of once a month.

In addition to working with second graders, the therapy dogs attend particular district and school-level events such as District Wellness Night in March and Summer Literacy Events at each of the schools.  A whole school meeting is held annually at each school in the fall to review behavior expectations with all staff and students within the building. This whole school meeting is led by the second grade students and aims to provide the entire school community an opportunity to connect with the building's handler and therapy dog.

  

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