Week of 1/3 – 1/5

Welcome Back!

I hope that you all had a rested and wonderful break.  I have always marveled at how unique the job of an educator is.  We all recognize how necessary it is to take that break, slow down, recover and rejuvenate.

With breaks (stops and starts) comes an opportunity to embark on our next stretch of great work with kids!  I’m not a big resolutions guy, but I – we – always resolve to do what is best for kids.  Heading into 2018, I am still focused on the goals we set out to accomplish this year:


Reflecting on 2017, I feel that we have done a great job towards achieving these goals:

  • Workshop systems/structures/routines & Compelling Unit Design:  Teachers and teams are working hard to create compelling units of instruction for students; these units have resulted in numerous amazing products.  Just before we left for break, we had Math students designing children’s books explaining circumference/area (shared with Pioneer students), we had Humanities students creating a museum to explain the lives of ancient cultures (hosted for Pioneer students), and we had science students pitching alternative energy sources to Clark County PUD employees, just to name a few!  We know that authentic, meaningful activities lead to increased engagement!
  • Community/restorative circles & Positive teacher/student relationships:  Thanks to the hard work of you all, community circles are becoming a strong tenet of classroom culture at Frontier.   As I said in August, kids don’t care what you know until they know that you care.  Frontier is comprised of incredible, compassionate staff and I am so grateful for this!  As we finish out the year, ILT groups will continue to highlight ways in which we can strengthen these connections in an effort to help students feel safe and successful in their endeavors.
  • Studio Labs:  As part of our work with Sam Bennett, we have had several opportunities this year for colleagues to host Studio Labs in their classrooms.  We know we learn best when we can see the work that we do, live in action.  I have witnessed some amazing professional learning take place this year from these structures, led by our teachers and instructional coaches.  The impact is real.  As we finish out 2018, we are thinking of ways to make this accessible to others in the building, as well.
  • Collaborative structures with colleagues:  One of my core beliefs is that we cannot grow if we work in isolation.  The work of PLCs is an important component of this as we work collaboratively to meet the needs of kids.  That being said, the structure of PLCs is not always available in the same way to all.  This year, we shifted our Professional Development to include the work of Personalized Learning Plans (PLPs).  We will continue to explore our personalized learning plans as we think about areas of our own practice and how that growth can impact student learning.  We’ve been able to collaborate with like-minded colleagues in this work and will continue to do so.  This will include sharing some of our work with Shahala Middle School.  Stay tuned!

As you can see, you are all doing a wonderful job of fulfilling our goals for 2017-2018!  I look forward to the amazing things that lie ahead!

Thanks for all that you do!

~ Griffin


Key Dates

Date Event
Wednesday, 1/3 Welcome Back!
Thursday, 1/4 Bill Oman (Director of Sec. Education) Classroom Walkthroughs – 8:30 – 9:30
Friday, 1/5 First week of 2018 in the books!  🙂

For those of you would like to have a glance at the month as a whole, here is a snapshot of January.  Be advised, it may not include all events, but it does provide a snapshot of most events in January.






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