Dear Families,

Bus Reminders…
Please remember that we are not able to use the school bus to provide transportation for “play dates”. Oftentimes, when this has been done in the past, one or both parent parties have not been aware of the arrangement. The district has made a firm decision that the buses can only transport assigned transportation students to their assigned stop. From time to time, there is a pre-approved exception due to an emergency situation such as a medical need, but this must be arranged and approved in advance. Thank you for your understanding.

How are literacy skills taught at Runkle?
During some of the recent Friday Feedback Sessions, there have been some questions about our philosophy of literacy instruction. For the past four years, Brookline has been partnering with the Literacy Collaborative at Lesley University. Out of this partnership, Brookline has trained several Literacy Coaches either at K-2, 3-5, or 6-8. Runkle School and Pierce School were the first two schools to join and our Runkle Literacy Coach, Kristin Gray has worked with the K-2 teachers for the past three years promoting Fountas and Pinnell’s Language and Literacy Framework, which includes Reading Workshop, Writing Workshop, and Word Study. Through extensive pedagogical study and implementing these practices with support from Ms. Gray, our literacy instruction is consistent from classroom to classroom and from grade to grade in K-2. Teachers are speaking a common language about what their students are learning and the students understand the structures and routines that reduce transitional time and increase time on learning.

Our continued development of literacy instruction does not stop at second grade. This year, ALL K-8 teachers of ELA are involved in this professional development in some way. K-2 teachers are continuing their work with Ms. Gray and she is also working with the entire grades 3-5 classroom teachers to build the consistency at our school for literacy instruction in the intermediate grades. In addition, over the past few years, individual teachers in grades 3-5 have received professional development on specific elements of the workshop model such as “guided reading”. Four of our teachers in grades 6-8 are also involved in 40 hours of professional development this year with the Grade 6-8 Literacy Coach Rachel Hayashi who
works with the upper grade ELA staff at Runkle and Heath.

At all levels, there is a focus on Reading Workshop, Writing Workshop, as well as Language/Word Study. For example, an
“interactive read aloud” may be used in Kindergarten, Fourth Grade, and Eighth Grade, but what the students are responding to as they are experiencing the literature together varies depending upon the concept or skill being taught. There is a helpful chart that delineates the various elements of the workshop model that we are in the process of implementing at Runkle. You may find the following link helpful:
http://www.literacycollaborative.org/docs/framework.pdf (http://www NULL.literacycollaborative NULL.org/docs/framework NULL.pdf)

On Friday, we had 27 student athletes in grades 5-8 compete in the annual fall cross-country meet! The students departed around 8:30 am and spent the next four hours or so with their peers from across the town in a positive competitive atmosphere. We are proud of the good sportsmanship displayed and many of our athletes did even better than last year!


Vanessa C. Beauchaine, Ed.D.


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