Friday, October 26, 2012

Parent Guide to MAP

Dear Families,

Now that student-led conferences are finished and you have your child’s MAP results, we would like to share some information and links with you in order for you  to support your child in his/her areas of need.
For more information about the overall Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) process:

The following NWEA Parent Toolkit was created as a resource and guide for parents. It includes Frequently Asked Questions, Tips for Parents, and a list of web sites for parents and kids:

We’d also like to provide you with 2 excellent resources for at-home practice. For each, you’ll need to look at your child’s Student Goal Setting Worksheet, which was shared with you at conferences.

For reading, look at your child’s RIT range by goal strand for Fall 2012. Use these numbers to select appropriate activities under each goal area. This website is aligned to Minnesota standards, so there are some discrepancies in the categorizing. Our suggestion for finding comprehension activities is to use the overall RIT score for reading.
            Website Wording                                                        MAP Wording
            Word Recognition, Analysis, and Vocabulary             Word Analysis and Vocabulary
Comprehension: Narrative                                          Literal, Interpretive, and Evaluative Comprehension
Comprehension: Informational                                   Literal, Interpretive, and Evaluative Comprehension
            Literature                                                                    Literature Response/Analysis
Here is the reading website:

For math, look at your child’s RIT range by goal strand for Fall 2012. Use these numbers to select appropriate activities under each goal area. For example, if your child’s RIT range for Geometry is 175-190, you would go to the click on the 171-180 and 181-190 links under Geometry and Measurement in order for find activities at your child’s level. Since Geometry and Measurement are grouped together, you would be looking for geometry skills, such as shapes.
            Website Wording                                            MAP Wording
            Number and Operation                                   Computation and Number Sense
            Geometry and Measurement                          Geometry and Measurement 
Data Analysis                                                  Statistics and Probability
            Algebra                                                            Algebraic Concepts
Here is the math website:

We know that parent support and at-home practice are essential for student success. We hope you find these resources useful. Please feel free to contact us with any questions.

The Discovery Elementary Team

Friday, October 19, 2012


“...that it is necessary to assist children in developing the skills of reasoning, empathizing, valuing and the creative resolution of conflict; that it should encourage curiosity, open-mindedness, persistence, respect for the opinions of others and cooperation; that it should develop in children the ability to think abstractly, critically, and creatively;...” 

Quoted from an original document that was provided by the founders of Discovery School 1994

One of the most important traits of Discovery School it the international nature of its population. That is something we not only take pride of, but use as one of our most valuable teaching resources. Values such as tolerance, respect and acceptance are clear expectations that are taught and enforced in our school community. Thus, it is no wonder why the celebration of the anniversary of the United Nations is such an important date in our school calendar. 

When examining closely the aims of the United Nations we find among them that as an organization it seeks “to keep peace throughout the world” , and among its principles it encourages countries to “settle their differences by peaceful means”. In a microcosmos, teachers, parents and students at Discovery School are constantly striving to use effective means of conflict resolution to overcome problems and differences, all the while respecting other’s individual and cultural differences.

The Discovery School Community comes together to celebrate these differences, giving the opportunity to all our different cultural communities to showcase the richness of their traditions and ways of life in an event filled with enthusiasm, activities and delicious food for students, parents and teachers. Throughout this week, the children will be learning about the United Nations, and will be participating in activities that will lead to this wonderful event.

What do YOU know of the organization? This is an ideal time to sit with your child and talk about the United Nations, and learn more about this amazing organization. Take the time to discuss traits such as tolerance, respect, cooperation, and peace with your child(ren). Think about ways we can demonstrate these at school, at home, and with family and friends. Use the following links to refresh your knowledge! We hope to see you all at school this Thursday, October 26 for an amazing school celebration!
Just for adults

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Good values are one of the most important things you can teach your child. Your child won't learn good values in an hour, or in a classroom, but over the course of their childhood and throughout their lifetime. Here are some tips to help you teach your child good values.


v        Live a life that is worthy of emulation. Children learn by example; they learn what they live. Believe it or not, your child is watching you and how you react to life. Live in a way that portrays good values in order to teach them to your child.


v        Don't wait until high school. Children need to start learning good values when they are very small. This will carry them through their turbulent teen years.


v        If you believe what you profess to believe in, LIVE IT!. Teach your child the value of your beliefs. If you do not prescribe to any particular faith, take time to talk to your children about how living with good values makes the world better for everyone.


v        Pay attention to what your children are watching, reading, and looking at. Television, magazines and the Internet offer many examples of both good and poor values. Talk to your kids about what they see. If someone on TV is exemplifying poor values and reaping the repercussions of those values, point that out to your child.


v        Look for opportunities to teach good values to your children. Praise them for behaviors that show good values. When you and your child witness someone exemplifying good values, ask your child why they believe that person is acting in a good manner. No matter how small your child is, their insights may surprise, amaze, and please you!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Discovery School offers a unique oportunity for children to make friends from all over the world. This is an article worth reading by every parent who has a child in elementary school.

Nobody Likes Me: Helping Children Make Friends
By Lisa M. Cope

It’s a heartbreaker. Your child comes home from school one day and says he/she doesn’t have any friends and that nobody likes him/her - the dreaded words no parent wants to hear. You’ve been there; you know how cruel it can be on the playground and how quickly friendships seem to come and go throughout life. You want to wrap up your child and protect him/her from the world and most of all, you want to ensure that he/she has plenty of friends.
As much as you’d like to step in, you simply can’t make friends for him/her. You can, however, give him/her the tools he needs to be social and to be a good friend. Every child is born with an innate need to attach or be in a relationship, but how he/she goes about forming those relationships depends largely on his temperament. Children can start to develop real friendships around the age of four or five. When everything goes smoothly, it can be exhilarating and great. But when you see your child hitting some bumps in the road to having his/her own “B.F.F.,” you can help.
According to Denise Salin, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Parent Educator, you don’t want to push. “Some children, especially younger elementary school age ones, need help developing social skills such as empathy, problem-solving, negotiating, cooperation and communication skills” before they are comfortable making friends. “If an elementary aged child does not seem to want to make friends, it’s important to try and get an understanding of what may be going on.”
To support the development of friendships in your child’s life, try some of these techniques:
  • Offer a variety of opportunities for play and socializing. Host friends over for play dates or lunch. See if you can participate in a carpool and sign-up your child for group activities such as art, drama or dance. Exposing him/her to different areas of play will help him learn to socialize. “Giving children lots of unstructured time to play is important because they learn the social skills they need so they can keep playing and have fun,” says Salin. Additionally, you can include your child when talking to people out of his normal range of peers. Take him/her to visit a neighbor, or bring him/her along to the dry cleaner. The more he/she is exposed to interacting with all kinds of people, the more he/she will learn to do the same.
  • Provide support to your child. This may seem easy, but how often do you really listen to your child? Pick up on the social cues by listening to what he/she says happened on the playground. Support your child’s choice of friends and welcome them to your home. Try getting to know his/her friends and their parents.
  • Stay balanced when things are hard. Go ahead and empathize with your child’s pain, but keep it in perspective. Making friends is a lifelong process and will of course have its ups and downs. Pain, unfortunately, is a part of it. According to Salin, “all children will experience some form of ‘normal’ social pain in their friendships. We can support them by listening and acknowledging their feelings.” Talk about your concerns with other adults who can support you -- such as a coach, teacher, friend, or family member. You never want to share your anxiety with your child, so find someone who can help offer insight about your child or consult with professionals.
  • Perhaps most importantly, you need to show your child how to be a good friend and make friends. The best way is to model the behavior you would like to see. According to Boys Town Pediatrics, there are several ways you can accomplish this at home:
  1. Help your child realize his own strengths.
  2. Have a sense of humor about yourself and your shortcomings.
  3. Listen to your child without criticism.
  4. Be kind, give compliments, wave to a friend, open the door for someone.
  5. Be understanding of what others are going through by showing empathy.
  6. Don’t complain. Instead, teach your children to accept what can't be changed by working hard to change the things that can.
Learning to build friendships is one of the ways children develop into well-rounded, emotionally healthy human beings. “I’ve worked with many adults who have achieved tremendous success in terms of college, career, money, etc. and yet they are sad and empty because they have great difficulty in their relationships,” says Salin. By giving your child the skills he needs to be confident and compassionate, you increase the likelihood that friends will eagerly come into his life. And friends will give his life a richness and happiness he will always treasure.

Taken from