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Movie Night: "The Lego Movie" Sept 19th

The Lego Movie imageThe Murch annual Movie Night is Friday, September 19 at 7:00 pm. This year’s show is “The Lego Movie.” Join us to watch the movie on the big screen at the soccer field. Bring a blanket and a drink, and we’ll keep the popcorn popping! Looking forward to seeing you there!


This Week at Murch

Monday 9/15
Room Parent Meeting @7pm in Library

Tuesday 9/16
Pre-K Back to School Night @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Friday 9/9
Murch Movie Night @ 7pm

Future Events

Presentation on the Role of Diversity in Academic and Social Growth
September 23 @ 6:00 pm

School Picture Day
September 30

Professional Development Day (no school for students)
October 10

Columbus Day (no school)
October 13

HSA Meeting
October 14 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Coffee on the Playground
October 17 @ 8:45 am

Murch 5K Fun Run
October 19 @ 7:45 am
Did you know?
In 1982, Murch kindergarten and first graders began using 15 new IBM computers as part of a pilot program in DC. This week, the HSA approved the purchase of 30 tablets for kindergarteners and first graders to use in the school's media center, adding to the Chromebooks, laptops, and other devices the HSA has purchased for the school over the last several years.

In the Spotlight

New Enrichment Program at Murch
Thanks to some good planning on the part of Principal Cebrzynski, 2014 brings an exciting new enrichment program, the Schoolwide Enrichment Model or SEM, to Murch with the hire of Enrichment Coordinator, Jacki Presnick. Ms. Presnick is already busy unveiling this program to Murch Students grades 2 thru 5. These students are in the process of being screened to determine their “interest profile,” and once determined, they will meet with Ms. Presnick two times a week for 6 weeks in a cluster group of students with the same interest to develop and work on an individualized, special enrichment project.

Each interest cluster will be comprised of no more than 15 students. 2nd and 3rd graders will be paired in groups together as will 4th and 5th graders. The interest profiler is a computer administered questionnaire the students will take to help determine what their top three interest areas are. These can include:

  • Athletics
  • Video/Photography
  • Technology
  • Performing Arts
  • Mathematics
  • Business
  • Reading
  • Social Action
  • Fine Arts
  • Writing
  • Science
  • History/Social Studies
  • Foreign Languages.

The students are guaranteed they will get to work on a project from one of their top three choices.  For more information, see the full post on the website.

Straight from Mr. C.

Volunteers in the Classroom & Mustang Math

Happy Friday! It was so fantastic to see so many new faces at our last HSA meeting. It was by far the most participants we have had in my four years at Murch. We are always looking to get parents actively engaged in school by asking for volunteers. Our students are well on their way to being engaged in their classrooms, with their friends, and in the community. Now that your children have fully launched themselves into a new year of learning, we hope you will consider joining the Volunteers in the Classroom (ViC) program. The program offers a way to support our teachers and staff directly on special projects and/or learning opportunities. To sign up, please complete this e-form and we will contact you as opportunities present themselves.
Murch has been identified, through our choice, as a math focus school. What this means is that we are getting a great deal of support from the district in order to have our teachers trained in conceptual math, inquiry based learning, and helping students problem solve. There is also an emphasis on coming with multiple paths to solutions and having time to work through the process in order to gain an understanding of the concept being taught. With an eye towards those larger goals, we will be rolling out Mustang Math, which will offer students new math stories/questions that will be posted every few weeks on the math bulletin board (which is just inside the main entrance, across from the breakfast table).
Next week we will also post the Mustang Math questions to the website so you will have an idea of how we are expecting students to think while engaged in math instruction and activities. This will allow you to support your child’s learning at home. We hope students will find these stories/questions challenging and that the questions will allow them to explore their ability to use reasoning skills, critical thinking, creativity, and problem solving. If you would like to get additional information about this initiative, please contact Donna Robinson or LaTaura Pendleton, our math specialists, for more information.
Many of you have been coming in to the office and requesting information, forms, report cards, etc. We have had an increasingly large number of requests and will do our best to fulfill these requests the day you come in. If we are unable to do so, we will provide the information you requested within a week’s time. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we continue to meet your requests in a timely manner.
Finally, please mark your calendars for Tuesday, September 23rd for a presentation on “The Role of Diversity on Academic and Social Growth.” More information is available on our website. We look forward to seeing you there. Have a great weekend!

News & Highlights

Thank You For Attending HSA Meeting
Thanks to all of those that came out on Tuesday night for the HSA’s first meeting of the year. During the meeting we discussed after school activities, the teacher grant program, and heard an update on the renovation process. In addition, the board approved funding for 30 iPads and a cart to house them for the lower grades as well as providing Elmos (those are projectors that are lightyears ahead of the ones they had when we were kids) to the new teachers who do not currently have them. We hope you will join us for our next meeting which will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 14 at 7pm. This will be an important meeting where we will have a presentation from our Budget chair on the 2014-15 budget. It’s a great time to come and learn how we spend our budget and ask any questions that you may have.

September 23rd Presentation: The Role of Diversity in Academic and Social Growth
Diverse HandsAt 6:00 PM on September 23rd, the Murch community is invited to consider the impact of increasingly diverse classrooms on children’s development. Randolph Carter and Lois Berlin, consultants with the DCPS Inclusive Schools Project, will lead attendees through a discussion and work session on the goals of the project and the many ways that schools can build inclusive communities.
Diversity in DCPS and a majority of school systems around the nation is not limited to race and ethnicity. Diversity includes English Language Learners (ELL), gifted and talented children, students with learning disabilities and learning challenges, socio-economic differences, and children whose parents are of the same gender.
A major goal of the evening on September 23rd is to consider the mechanics of community building across differences, including the ways that parents can facilitate greater understanding for their children and their communities.
Realizing that change requires both reflection and action, the facilitators welcome all parents to attend and to help develop Murch as a model multicultural school community.
Please join us!
**Babysitting will be provided by the Murch HSA.

School Picture Day is Tuesday, September 30th

Student Picture DayAs a reminder, School Picture Day is Tuesday, September 30th! Individual portraits of Murch students will be taken. Please click Picture Day Flyer for more details, along with clothing tips.

Coping with Family Changes and Kids Talk: Two New Student Groups to Start this Fall school counselor, Ms. Lauren Miller, and our social worker, Ms. Deb Meisel, will be starting two groups this fall. Coping With Family Changes: This group is for children whose parents are divorced or in the process of divorcing. Divorce can be very difficult, for all of those involved. Children often struggle with the changes. A child will experience a range of feelings including confused, sad, mad, relieved, and lonely. At times this can affect the child’s school performance. Kids Talk: This group is for children for whom their parent/guardian/caregiver is living with cancer or has recently received a new diagnosis. For more information about the groups, please click on the Coping with Family Changes-Kids Talk Permission Slip. If you would like to have your child join the group, please sign and send back the bottom half of this letter. Please contact either Ms. Miller or Ms. Meisel if you have any questions, concerns or ideas!

Class Updates & Reminders

Pre-K Back to School Night

Calling all Pre-K parents. Back to school Night for just the pre-K is September 16th from 6:30 to 7:30pm. There will be babysitting for Murch age children provided by the HSA. A signup sheet will be available next week in your child's classroom.

Class Websites Up and Running
Don't forget to check out your child's website.  All class websites are linked to the Faculty and Staff page on the website. Find out what your child has been up to the first week of school and keep track of their progress!

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