Bear Gulch Elementary School

Keri Applegate

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Principal's Page

A Message From Mrs. Applegate

Dear Bear Gulch Parents and Families,

Welcome to the 2017-2018 school year!  I am very excited about the many great opportunities that we have in store for our learners at school this year.  The teachers and staff at Bear Gulch Elementary are committed to the academic achievement and social development of our learners and they continually go above and beyond to ensure that each learner is supported in their success.

Our school is currently receiving some exciting improvements with the modernization of our front office. The construction crews have been hard at work since last December to make our new office more functional for our staff and families and increase office workspace for our staff and volunteers. We are so excited to see the finished product sometime during the 2017-2018 school year and to see our beloved Grizzly Bear finally reappear from hibernation!

In the classrooms, our learners continue to work hard to master the California Common Core State Standards for their grade level.  They will be asked to use reasoning skills, to defend their answers, to solve problems through multiple methods, to utilize research, and to think critically about content in all academic areas. The instructional methods our teachers will use to guide our learners to successful attainment of the standards may look very different from the methods our learners' parents experienced in school.  For this reason, we will offer grade level parent education opportunities throughout the school year to assist families in supporting their children at home.  Our goal is provide a solid educational foundation for our learners that will support them on their journey to college and career readiness.

Our teachers are also receiving staff development in the Visible Learning research conducted by John Hattie.  They are informing their learners of their learning intentions and success criteria for lessons and they are providing timely and precise feedback to learners about their progress to support our children in becoming assessment capable learners who know what they are learning, where they are in the learning process, and where they are headed next.  As a learning community we are discussing the importance of maintaining a growth mindset and knowing what resources are available when we are stuck in the "Learning Pit". 

Your involvement and support of our school is a crucial component of your child's success.  Consider attending a monthly Coffee with the Principal meeting, volunteering in the classroom or helping our Friends of Bear Gulch Parent Organization in our fundraising efforts. Education is a team effort and I am very proud to be a member of this great team.

Sincerely,

Keri Applegate                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

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School Initiatives

GRIZZLY NOTE REWARDS

We love "catching" our learners doing the right things even when they think no one is watching.  We've established a "Catch 'em Being Good" program at Bear Gulch where learners are given Grizzly Notes when they make good choices.   Teachers collect these Grizzly Notes in a class container and each Friday these notes are sent up to the office for prize drawings at the end of the day.  One lucky learner from each class is selected to choose a prize for their good behavior. 

POSITIVE LEARNER TRAITS

Learners discuss and learn about a different positive learning trait every two months.  Learner created examples of the focus trait are displayed on the MPR board and awards are provided to learners who best exhibit each particular trait throughout the two month period.  Additionally, learners who are "caught" displaying the focus trait anywhere on campus receive a special sticker that lets everyone know of their accomplishment.  The traits that will be highlighted this year are: Responsibility, Empathy, Curiosity, Initiative, and Problem Solving.

HONOR ROLL AWARDS

Learners in the 3rd - 5th grades have the opportunity to earn Honor Roll status for exceptional performance on their report cards.  Honor Roll learners are recognized each trimester at a special evening themed ceremony.  This year's themes include Out of This World Stars (Space theme), Rock Stars (Rock and Roll theme), and All American Stars (Americana theme).  Students earn certificates, lanyards and pins that symbolize their commitment to academic excellence and trophies are presented to those who make the Principal's Honor Roll (Straight A's).

CLEAN ROOM and BACK PACK AWARDS

Our wonderful custodians, Mr. Don and Mr. Bruce, work hard to catch learners taking care of their belongings and their classrooms by presenting Clean Room and Back Pack Awards each time they find that learners have left their rooms clean at the end of the school day and have neatly hung their back packs on the hooks outside of their classrooms.  These awards are saved up to earn various prizes throughout the year.

ATTENDANCE INCENTIVES

Good attendance at school is a necessity for student success.  We provide several incentives to encourage students to maintain excellent attendance throughout the year such as No Tardy Parties, Attendance Challenges, Perfect Attendance certificates and class pencils for classroom "Perfect Attendance".

BEAR BUCKS

Learners who display appropriate recess and lunchtime behavior have the opportunity to earn Bear Bucks which are collected and saved up to "purchase" numerous incentives during lunchtime at the Bear Bucks Store.  Incentives range from paw print pencils to Bear Gulch imprinted soccer bags and Bear Gulch spirit day shirts.