Great behavioral insight from PBIS world website

PBIS world website

Great place to start getting curious about difficult student behavior.

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Basic Phonics Skills Test 3rd Edition (BPST III)

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Overview

Basic Phonics Skills Test III (BPST III) (For students reading below a 4th-grade decoding level) by John Shefelbine

Basic Phonics Skills Test III

Purpose
The Basic Phonics Skills Test III (BPST) is a phonics assessment that consists of the recognition of letter sounds, specific phonics patterns, and the blending of single syllable and polysyllabic words out of context. The BPST is a tool for teacher to isolate the phonics sounds students can identify and blend successfully.

Administration
– Give the student a copy of the BPST Student sheets.
– Begin with the letter sounds portion of the test, or begin with the word lists if
individual letter sounds have already been identified or are not a concern.
– Ask the student to read the sound and/or words aloud from left to right. Words must be blended, not simply sounded out, to be considered correct.
– Record the student’s correct responses with a check mark above the corresponding letter and/or word on the BPST Teacher sheet.
– You may choose to also record the student’s incorrect responses by writing the mispronunciation given above the corresponding letter and/or word.
– Consider stopping when the student is unable to correctly read all or most of the words in two consecutive rows.
– Do not offer the student any assistance except to ask him/her to move on to the next word as needed.

Analysis
– Consider carefully the errors the student made in each section to determine
possible areas for instruction and intervention. Any section in which a student
achieved less than 80% proficiency represents a possible area of focus. The order of
sections does not represent a particular instructional sequence.
– It is important to note that a student who mispronounces polysyllabic words out of
context may demonstrate a need for vocabulary instruction versus phonics intervention. Listen to the child read polysyllabic words in the context of an
appropriately leveled text to determine if a vocabulary need is present

Source

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BPST-III – – Basic Phonic Skills Test (Word Doc)

BPST III (PDF)

Why is this important?

Phonics is the process of mapping the sounds in words to written letters. This is one of the earliest reading skills children should develop, because it introduces them to the link between letters and sounds, known as the alphabetic principle.

A lack of phonics instruction in early childhood can lead to reading difficulties further down the track. It’s important that children can grasp the concept that printed text represents the sounds of spoken words. There are many phonics activities that you can do with your child at home, which will help your child to develop early phonics skills, although it’s important to remember that these activities should always be complemented with regular reading.

Source

We use measures like the BPST 3 to help understand the child’s level of phonics competency to help inform our instruction. Some children who score low will need additional practice with developing their understanding of phonics.

How to talk to kids about school violence

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The day after the mass shooting occurred in Florida many kids were talking about the massacre. They were asking a variety of questions like, “Will that happen to us at our school?” or simply “Am I safe at school?”  As educators, parents, and community members we have an obligation to know what to say to our kids. This post will review what the National Association of School Psychologist (NASP) recommends.

Talking to Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers

High profile acts of violence, particularly in schools, can confuse and frighten children who may feel in danger or worry that their friends or loved-ones are at risk. They will look to adults for information and guidance on how to react. Parents and school personnel can help children feel safe by establishing a sense of normalcy and security and talking with them about their fears.

  1. Reassure children that they are safe. Emphasize that schools are very safe. Validate their feelings. Explain that all feelings are okay when a tragedy occurs. Let children talk about their feelings, help put them into perspective, and assist them in expressing these feelings appropriately.
  2. Make time to talk. Let their questions be your guide as to how much information to provide. Be patient; children and youth do not always talk about their feelings readily. Watch for clues that they may want to talk, such as hovering around while you do the dishes or yard work. Some children prefer writing, playing music, or doing an art project as an outlet. Young children may need concrete activities (such as drawing, looking at picture books, or imaginative play) to help them identify and express their feelings.
  3. Keep your explanations developmentally appropriate.Early elementary school children need brief, simple information that should be balanced with reassurances that their school and homes are safe and that adults are there to protect them. Give simple examples of school safety like reminding children about exterior doors being locked, child monitoring efforts on the playground, and emergency drills practiced during the school day.
    • Upper elementary and early middle school children will be more vocal in asking questions about whether they truly are safe and what is being done at their school. They may need assistance separating reality from fantasy. Discuss efforts of school and community leaders to provide safe schools.
    • Upper middle school and high school students will have strong and varying opinions about the causes of violence in schools and society. They will share concrete suggestions about how to make school safer and how to prevent tragedies in society. Emphasize the role that students have in maintaining safe schools by following school safety guidelines (e.g. not providing building access to strangers, reporting strangers on campus, reporting threats to the school safety made by students or community members, etc.), communicating any personal safety concerns to school administrators, and accessing support for emotional needs.
  4. Review safety procedures. This should include procedures and safeguards at school and at home. Help children identify at least one adult at school and in the community to whom they go if they feel threatened or at risk.
  5. Observe children’s emotional state. Some children may not express their concerns verbally. Changes in behavior, appetite, and sleep patterns can also indicate a child’s level of anxiety or discomfort. In most children, these symptoms will ease with reassurance and time. However, some children may be at risk for more intense reactions. Children who have had a past traumatic experience or personal loss, suffer from depression or other mental illness, or with special needs may be at greater risk for severe reactions than others. Seek the help of mental health professional if you are at all concerned.
  6. Limit television viewing of these events. Limit television viewing and be aware if the television is on in common areas. Developmentally inappropriate information can cause anxiety or confusion, particularly in young children. Adults also need to be mindful of the content of conversations that they have with each other in front of children, even teenagers, and limit their exposure to vengeful, hateful, and angry comments that might be misunderstood.
  7. Maintain a normal routine. Keeping to a regular schedule can be reassuring and promote physical health. Ensure that children get plenty of sleep, regular meals, and exercise. Encourage them to keep up with their schoolwork and extracurricular activities but don’t push them if they seem overwhelmed.

Suggested Points to Emphasize When Talking to Children

    • Schools are safe places. School staff works with parents and public safety providers (local police and fire departments, emergency responders, hospitals, etc.) to keep you safe.

The school building is safe because … (cite specific school procedures).

  • We all play a role in the school safety. Be observant and let an adult know if you see or hear something that makes you feel uncomfortable, nervous or frightened.
  • There is a difference between reporting, tattling or gossiping. You can provide important information that may prevent harm either directly or anonymously by telling a trusted adult what you know or hear.
  • Although there is no absolute guarantee that something bad will never happen, it is important to understand the difference between the possibility of something happening and probability that it will affect you (our school community).
  • Senseless violence is hard for everyone to understand. Doing things that you enjoy, sticking to your normal routine, and being with friends and family help make us feel better and keep us from worrying about the event.
  • Sometimes people do bad things that hurt others. They may be unable to handle their anger, under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or suffering from mental illness. Adults (parents, teachers, police officers, doctors, faith leaders) work very hard to get those people help and keep them from hurting others. It is important for all of us to know how to get help if we feel really upset or angry and to stay away from drugs and alcohol.
  • Stay away from guns and other weapons. Tell an adult if you know someone has a gun. Access to guns is one of the leading risk factors for deadly violence.
  • Violence is never a solution to personal problems. Students can be part of the positive solution by participating in anti-violence programs at school, learning conflict mediation skills, and seeking help from an adult if they or a peer is struggling with anger, depression, or other emotions they cannot control.

NASP has additional information for parents and educators on school safety, violence prevention, children’s trauma reactions, and crisis response at www.nasponline.org.

PDF

The handout, Talking to Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers is available in the following languages:

Source

Related Readings

Violence Prevention: A Mental Health Issue Tips for Parents and Educators (NASP)

15 Tips for Talking with Children About School Violence (Colorín Colorado)

School Violence Prevention-Brief Facts and Tips (NASP)

Framework for Safe and Successful Schools

PREPaRE Training Curriculum

NASP Resolution on Efforts to Prevent Gun Violence 

Reining in Screentime

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Screen time use amongst kids has increased dramatically in the past couple of years. Families are struggling to curb not only their child’s use but in a lot of cases their own use of screen time. This post will highlight ideas and concepts to help manage the use of screen time so your family can maintain a healthy relationship with technology.

Quizzes

How Screen-Hungry Is Your Child?

Does your child have too much screen time?

Book

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The Art of Screen Time

How Your Family Can Balance Digital Media and Real Life

by Anya Kamenetz

Radio

Questionaire

Making Family Screen Time Rules

Tips:
• Get clear. Use these questions to gain clarity for yourself, then talk with your family to make your own rules.
• Change as needed. Screen time rules can be re-evaluated as your family perspectives shift and needs evolve.
• Post ’em. Write down your rules and post where everyone can see them to help keep everyone accountable

Screen Time Considerations:

  1. When does it feel like screen time is most disruptive to our family? What are my kids like when they get too much media?
  2. How much screen time are my kids getting now? (school work, family together time, free time etc. You may wish to track a week to find out)
  1. How do I use Screens for work and play? What are my own limits and struggles?
  1. When would it be convenient for the kids to do media?
  1. What are my biggest fears or concerns about media usage?
  1. When is media enriching? When is it replacing an activity I want my kids to be doing instead?

Setting Clear Expectations:

Examples in parentheses are not prescriptions, just ideas to get you thinking – what works for your family?

  1. What constitutes screen time in your family? Which devices are used, and which are off limits for kids? List each device, how it can be used (i.e. – Tablet: for educational use only – no games. Mom’s phone: totally at her discretion and no games, TV: PS3, Netflix…)
  1. When are absolute no-screen times of day or events? (before school, at the table, when saying hello/goodbye etc. Use your answer above about ‘when media is most disruptive’ as well as your family values to make choices about this.)
  1. When are screens allowed?
  1. When will you make exceptions? (travel, sickness, homework etc…)
  1. What must be completed before screen time? (chores, homework, outside play etc.)
  1. Where can devices be used? How will I monitor this activity? (devices in bedrooms? behind a closed door? age dependent? require password access? etc.)
  1. When do kids have to ask permission from a parent? (downloading games? YouTube? at friend’s houses? when posting online? etc.)
  1. What are the rules about giving out personal information? (name, address, contact info)
  1. How should kids interact with guests and screens? (Greetings?Goodbyes?Is media allowed while friends are over?)
  1. What actions will take away screen time privileges?
  1. What are the consequences if your trust is breached?
  2. How should kids treat electronics? What are the consequences if people mistreat electronics?
  3. SOURCEChart

Screen Time Log

Fill out the We Can! Screen Time Chart to see how much time your family spends in front of a screen. Keep one chart for each person.

Videos

Screen Time Parenting Tips (Common Sense Media)

Age Considerations

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Reading

Other Ideas

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Using the lens of the Search Institute’s “40 Developmental Assets” to support student outcomes

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Developmental Assets

Developmental Assets help children grow into caring, engaged, and responsible adults. Developmental Assets include the internal character strengths and commitments young people need as well as the external supports and opportunities they need from their families, schools, organizations, and communities.

Search Institute introduced the framework in 1990 and, since then, has studied developmental assets in more that 5 million youth across North America and around the world. The approach focuses on young people’s strengths and working across the many parts of their lives to support their growth and successful development. Hundreds of schools, coalitions, and other organizations have used the developmental assets as a guiding framework for their youth development efforts. Source

Questions

WHAT IS IT?
Asset Building, Resiliency and Youth Development and are philosophies and strategies for creating youth-centered environments that prioritize the positive development of young people.

WHY USE IT?
Research and practitioner experience has proven that a positive school day and after school environment that intentionally develops youth’s assets and adopts a youth development approach can provide the experiences and skills that youth need to develop into healthy adults.

WHEN TO USE IT?
Utilizing an asset building, resiliency and youth development based approach is effective in planning and facilitating all aspects of school day and after school programs. The approach can be used:
As the foundation of your school’s philosophy to establish emotionally, physically safe and engaging learning environments; As a framework for creating engaging classroom, program structures and activities that offer meaningful participation, build skills and expose youth to new opportunities and resources; As an approach for increasing youth involvement and youth buy in to lesson and activity components; As a professional development component or part of a job orientation for all staff.
HOW IT IS USED:
Below are three philosophies of asset building, resiliency and youth development that are often referred to by school sites, local city agencies and community based organizations.
SFUSD- School Health Programs Department encourages the following Asset Building, Resiliency and Youth Development core principles for working with young people as measured by the California Healthy Kids Survey (CHKS):

Young people have the capacity to develop and transform as they move toward adulthood.
Young people are genetically intended to develop and are actively seeking to meet their own needs.
All young people need the same types of positive resources:
-Caring, Respectful Relationships
-High, Clear and Fair Expectations
-Meaningful Opportunities to Participate and Contribute
All young people need adults in their lives.

Source

PROCESS

First, the kids take a pretest called the DAP (Link). The school gets the results to help direct efforts to support students at their school based on the needs represented by the child responses. The school chooses activities to carry out throughout the year to intervene with the needs. Finally, a posttest of the DAP is given to measure the growth of the schools’ efforts to address the needs identified in the pretest DAP.

DAP QUICK REFERENCE

Length: 58 questions

Average Completion Rate:10 minutes
(Add at least 10 minutes for general instructions and collection.)

Youth: 4-12 grade; ages 9-18

Minimum youth needed for report: 30

Minimum time between Pre and Post: 3 months

Source

 

Need a Copy of the 40 Developmental Assets?

These documents are provided, compliments of the Search Institute. Click on the links to download PDF copies of 40 Developmental Assets lists for different developmental stages and in different languages.

These pages may be reproduced for educational, noncommercial uses only. Copyright © 1997, 2006 by Search Institute, 615 First Avenue N.E.,Suite 125, Minneapolis, MN 55413; 800-888-7828; search-institute.org. All Rights Reserved.

The following are registered trademarks of Search Institute: Search Institute®, Developmental Assets® and Healthy Communities • Healthy Youth®.

Asset Checklist

Assets for Different Developmental Stages

Assets in Alternate Languages

Please note, these asset lists were compiled by Healthy Communities, Healthy Youth sites across the United States. They represent volunteer efforts. Assets lists in alternate stages for different developmental levels are not available for every language.

Would you like to learn more about the Search Institute and their work with the 40 Developmental Assets? Click here to check out their website!

Kidpower a Great resource for keeping kids, parents, and educators informed about child safety

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https://www.kidpower.org/

Kidpower is an excellent organization with a world-class reputation in supporting child safety. Their materials and training have helped many schools in our area and I can attest to their commitment to building safer communities.

Resource Library

Books

Training

Kidpower Teenpower Fullpower International is a global non-profit leader dedicated to child protection advocacy and empowering people of all ages, abilities, cultures, beliefs, and identities with life skills for safety and success. Our vision is to work together to create cultures of safety, respect, and kindness for everyone, everywhere.

Since 1989, Kidpower has protected nearly 5 million people, including those with special needs, from bullying, abuse, kidnapping, and other violence by empowering them with awareness, knowledge, and skills – and has prepared them to take charge of their safety and well being. Worldwide, thousands of educators, mental health experts, public safety officials, health care providers, community leaders, and parents recommend Kidpower for being effective, positive, hands-on, safe, trauma-informed, culturally competent, age-appropriate, and relevant.

Kidpower delivers services through:

  • Hands-on experiential workshops for families, schools, organizations, businesses, and agencies

  • Training for people wishing to learn how to use and teach our programs

  • Partnerships with groups that share our commitment to safety and respect

  • Consulting and coaching calls, for individuals and groups, to provide long-distance support

  • Extensive online educational resources including articles, handouts, posters, and videos

  • Cartoon-illustrated books for children, teens, and adults and other publications

  • Initiatives such as International Child Protection Advocacy Month in September

Death of a loved one can be difficult to navigate with your children.

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Death is that inevitable phenomenon that no one really cares to talk about, especially with your children. As we go through life death often pops up when we least expect it. This post is dedicated to resources to support your efforts in guiding your child through the tough process of death of a loved one.

Thoughts

Parenting While Grieving

How to help a grieving child

Grief Tip Sheets

Talking to Kids About Death and Grief: 10 Comprehensive Tips

The Grief Coaster: Understanding stress in grief

Journaling

Grief Activity Books for Kids 3-9

Activities

Here are some things you can do to help you express your feelings.

Activity 1:  finish the sentences

Finish the following sentences.

The thing that makes me feel the saddest is …..

If I could talk to the person who died I would ask….

Since the death my family doesn’t….

My worst memory is….

If I could change things I would….

One thing that I liked to do with the person who died was…

When the person died I….

Since the death my friends….

After the death, school….

When I am alone….

Is there anyone you want to share this with?

Activity 2: drawing

Find a piece of paper and fold it in half. On one side, draw a picture of your family before the death. On the other side, draw a picture of your family after the death. You might want to share your picture with someone who would understand.

Source

Activities for Grieving Children

Sesame Street Materials-

  • Storybook (2.1mb PDF)
    Curl up with this printable book, starring your child’s favorite characters: Elmo and Jessie.
  • Caring Cards (631kb PDF)
    Have these cards on hand when you need a conversation starter, an activity idea, or just a little inspiration.
  • Memory Chain (709kb PDF)
    Connect all your favorite memories—our paper chain template shows you how.

Books

List of children’s books about death (PDF)

The Dougy Center Materials (Books and Pamphlets on Death, Dying, and Grief)

1. Lifetimes: The Beautiful Way to Explain Death to Children (kids 5+)

2.The Invisible String (kids 3+)

3. Everett Anderson’s Goodbye (Reading Rainbow)  (kids 5-8)

4. The Tenth Good Thing About Barney (kids 6-9)

5. I’ll Always Love You (kids 3-7)

6. When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death (Dino Life Guides for Families) (kids 4-8)

7. I Miss You: A First Look at Death (First Look at Books) (kids 4+)

8. The Saddest Time (kids 6-9)

9. Tear Soup: A Recipe for Healing After Loss  (kids 8+)tear soup

10. The Fall of Freddie the Leaf: A Story of Life for All Ages (kids 4+)

11. Gentle Willow: A Story for Children About Dying (kids 4+)

12. Where Are You? A Child’s Book About Loss (kids 4-8)

13. Samantha Jane’s Missing Smile: A Story About Coping With the Loss of a Parent (kids 5+)

14. The Scar (kids5-9)

15. A Terrible Thing Happened (kids 4+)

16. The Elephant in the Room: A Childrens Book for Grief and Loss (kids 4+)

17. The Boy Who Didn’t Want to Be Sad (kids 4+)  elephant in the room

18. I Wish I Could Hold Your Hand…: A Child’s Guide to Grief and Loss (Little Imp Books) (kids 9+)

19. Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children (kids 4+)

20. When Your Grandparent Dies: A Child’s Guide to Good Grief (Elf-Help Books for Kids) (kids 5+)

21. Someone I Love Died (kids 4-8)

22. What Happened When Grandma Died? (kids 4+)

23. Always and Forever (kids 4+)

24. Badger’s Parting Gifts (kids 4-8)

25. Ghost Wings (kids 5+)

26. Finding Grandpa Everywhere: A Young Child Discovers Memories of a Grandparent (kids 7+)

27. The Grandpa Tree (kids 3+)nana upstairs

28. Sad Isn’t Bad: A Good-Grief Guidebook for Kids Dealing with Loss (Elf-Help Books for Kids) (kids 6+)

29. Nana Upstairs and Nana Downstairs (Picture Puffins) (kids 4-8)

30. Daddy, Up and Down: Sisters Grieve the Loss of Their Daddy (kids 4-8)

31. Saying Goodbye to Daddy (kids 4+)

32. The Angel with the Golden Glow: A Family’s Journey Through Loss and Healing (kids 4+)

33. Where’s Jess: For Children Who Have a Brother or Sister Die (kids 3-6)

34. A Taste of Blackberries (kids 8-12)

35. Bridge to Terabithia (kids 8-12)

36. My Grandson Lew (kids 4-6)

37. Aarvy Aardvark Finds Hope: A Read Aloud Story for People of All Ages About Loving and Losing, Friendship and Hope (as the title says, people of all ages!)

38. The Empty Place: A Child’s Guide Through Grief (Let’s Talk)(kids 5-10)

39. Dancing on the Moon (kids 3+)  sammy in the sky

40. Lost and Found: Remembering a Sister (kids 6+)

41. Stacy Had a Little Sister (A Concept Book) (kids 4+)

42. Ragtail Remembers: A Story That Helps Children Understand Feelings of Grief (kids 4+)

43. Goodbye Mousie (kids 4-8)

44. Remembering Crystal (kids 3+)

45. Rudi’s Pond (kids 5-8)

46. The Memory String (kids 4-8)

47. Sammy in the Sky (kids 4-8)

48. Where Do People Go When They Die? (kids 3-8)

49. Chester Raccoon and the Acorn Full of Memories (kids 3-8)

50. Her Mother’s Face (kids 4-8)

51. Remembering Mama (kids 4+) her mother

52. Old Pig (Picture Puffin)(kids 3-8)

53. Pearl’s Marigolds for Grandpa (kids 3-7)

54. Saying Goodbye to Lulu(kids 3-6)

55. The Mountains of Tibet(kids 7+)

56. Rabbityness (kids 3-7)

57. I Wish I Could Hold Your Hand…: A Child’s Guide to Grief and Loss (Little Imp Books) (kids 9+)

58. Can You Hear Me Smiling?: A Child Grieves a Sister (kids 8+)

59. The Copper Tree (kids 5-8)

60. Everybody Feels Sad (kids 4+)

61. Grief is Like a Snowflake (kids 4+)

62. My Baby Big Sister: A Book for Children Born Subsequent to a Pregnancy Loss (kids 4-8)

63. Ladder to the Moon (kids 4-8)

64. Missing Mommy: A Book About Bereavement (kids 3-8).

Source

Camp

Grief Camp 

Camp Erin is the largest national bereavement program for youth grieving the death of a significant person in their lives.

Children and teens ages 6-17 attend a transformational weekend camp that combines traditional, fun camp activities with grief education and emotional support, free of charge for all families. Led by grief professionals and trained volunteers, Camp Erin provides a unique opportunity for youth to increase levels of hope, enhance self-esteem, and especially to learn that they are not alone.

Camp Erin is offered in every Major League Baseball city as well as additional locations across the U.S. and Canada. The Moyer Foundation partners with hospices and bereavement organizations to bring hope and healing to thousands of grieving children and teens each year

Organizations

National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC)

Family Lives On Foundation

School

When death impacts your school

Therapy Materials

Clinical Grief Activities for Working with Bereaved Children