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  November 2015  
Go to Main Calendar
  November 2015  
Go to Main Calendar

What's Happening at Peaks

Principal’s Notes                                                                                                

November 22, 2015

Dear Peaks Island Parents,

As I mentioned at the Coffee Talk on Thursday, the horrific events of Paris have not escaped the students of Peaks Island School.  Children in both of the older classrooms have asked their teachers to explain what happened on November 13th in France.  Ms. Mascolo and Mr. Marenghi handled these conversations with sensitivity and thought explaining that a lack of respect was the root of the problem in France and we can change the world by creating environments with more respect.  Please call or e-mail me if you are unsure how or how much you want to discuss this event with your children. 

Coffee Talk with Renee at the Casco Bay Lines 

Thank you parents who attended the Coffee Talk at the Bay Lines on Thursday.  I always want to know what you are thinking about and in what ways we can improve this school.  Thank you for your time and your ideas and your kindness.   A special thank you to Ed Daranyi for bringing the coffee and treats.  The next Coffee Talk with Renee will be on Thursday, January 7th at 7:30am at Casco Bay Lines. The topic will be “Understanding the Common Core”.

Thanksgiving Community Luncheon returns to Peaks

Thank you, Peaks Families and Community, for joining us at our special Thanksgiving luncheon on Thursday.   So many people from all over the island have either sent me a note or told me what a great event it was.  My only regret is missing it.  I will however look forward even more to next year's Thanksgiving luncheon, Peaks-style.

A Day of Culture for Peaks Island students

Thanks go to Art teacher Allison Villani and the Culture Club of Portland in creating a day of the Arts for our older students at Peaks.  On Thursday, December 3rd,, all children in Mr. Marenghi's class as well as Ms. Mascolo's class will meet at the pier to board the 8:15 boat with their teachers and chaperones.  Kids will walk to the Portland Stage to view at 10:00 showing of “The Snow Queen”.  After the show, Portland Stage has generously offered their lobby for kids to eat their bagged lunches.  After lunch, all children, teachers, and chaperones will walk to the Portland Museum of Art to participate in docent-led  tours at the museum.  When the tours are complete, children and adults will walk to Casco Bay Lines to board the 2:15 boat back to Peaks.  An additional thank you goes to the staff of Portland Stage as well as our very own Barbara Hoppin who are  previewing the events with our students this week and next.  Permission slips will go home on November 30th.

SAC and PTO meetings this week

SAC will meet this Monday, November 23 at 5:00 in the library.

PTO will meet this Tuesday, November 23 at 7:15 am in the library.

Reading Logs and Homework

We are fortunate at Peaks that we have a very supportive and involved parent community. All the data around student achievement shows that the more invested a parent is in her child's school work, the better the child does.  A 2005 Harvard meta-analysis of 77 studies that reviewed data for 300,000 American children summarizes it this way: “The largest effect sizes emerged for parental expectations. The effect sizes for parental style and reading with one's child were smaller than for either parental expectations, but they also had very consistent influences across the studies.” http://www.hfrp.org/publications-resources/browse-our-publications/parental-involvement-and-student-achievement-a-meta-analysis )     I cite this data because it is a reminder that making sure your child does his homework and records it for his teacher matters--a lot-- in his future success.  Thank you for partnering with us on this.  Please come see me if you have questions about Portland's homework policy.

Expeditionary Learning Comes to Peaks in January

Thanks to the dedicated advocacy of Charlie Marenghi as well as the generosity of Jeanne Crocker, Peaks has hired  2013 Teacher of the Year Karen MacDonald to provide Expeditionary Learning training to our teaching staff and any interested parents.  She will offer three initial days of training in January, 1/6, 1/13, and 1/20.  Please let me know if you would like to participate in this unique and stimulating training.

Dates to Remember

November 23-- SAC Meeting, 5:00-5:45, library

November 24 – PTO meeting, 7:15 am, library

November 25-29-- NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving Break

December 1 —Parent Teacher Conferences, 12:30-3:30

December 2-- Parent Teacher Conferences, 12:30-6:30

December 3-- Grades 3-5 field trip, “Snow Queen”, Portland Museum of Art

December 5 --Peaks Island Annual Tree Lighting, 4ish

December 8 – NO CHORUS

December 13 --Holiday Sing A Long at Brackett Church, 3:00, 7:00

Have a lovely Thanksgiving break with your loved ones!


Renee Bourgoine-Serio



Curiosity Reigns

Curiosity Reigns at PIES

We are well into fall at PIES. Our students are undergoing explorations of the amazingly lovely fall season.

In Ms. Ryan Humphreys K-2 class, apples have been a central theme. We have undertaken fieldwork on the island to identify apple orchards and to harvest and identify apples found on Peaks Island with the help of our volunteer orchardist Mr. Waite Maclin We gathered, typed, tested and cooked with the apples we harvested. With Mr. Maclin’s help, we will undertake the development of a stewardship plan for the 10 trees the students planted last year.  The overarching question guiding our inquiry is “What fruits will we bear while we are students at PIES?”

Mr Marenghi’s 3-4 class is working on a service learning initiative.  Using their skills in persuasive writing, the students have developed a plan to raise money for a local charity. They will do so by hosting a “Scary Café”!

On October 29th the students will invite the PI Community in to purchase baked goods and to discuss their process in persuasive writing as well as have fun activities to share.  Come on by the school for some fun between 10:00-11:40 on the 29th in Mr. Marenghi classroom.

Ms. Mascolo is undergoing a study of the Salem witch trials of 1692 with the 4th and 5th grade students. They are looking particularly at the impact of the speculative accusation and assumptions of the time and the impact on the lives of the citizenry of Colonial America.

The students are exploring language arts, social studies and history through this unit of study. They are employing valuable critical thinking and textual analysis skills through their study of Leadership and Citizenry with real word examples throughout our history. To that end, the classroom is hoping to take a fieldtrip to Salem to explore first hand the site of the trials, the village and the museum.

The Afterschool Academy is celebrating! Please come and see our Robotics Exhibition as our students prepare to showcase their work for the STEM Technology Expo at the University of Southern Maine.  The PIES Lego Robotics Open House will be held 4:00-5:30 at PIES gymnasium.




Document Container
NCLB Letter Nov201413 January, 2015 04:48 PMjoab.howell56.3 KB
Peaks Cliff 14 15 Success Plan13 January, 2015 04:47 PMjoab.howell145 KB
Peaks Island School NCLB Report Card28 April, 2015 08:27 PMnilsec186 KB