Welcome from Principal, Tami Weiser

10/28/2010 - Message from Principal, Tami Weiser

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This week at Stephen S. Wise we are all about literacy and the love of a good book.  Yesterday our first grade students had their Literary Tea, and it was a very special morning.  Every child dressed up as a character from their book and then came to school to share their story.  We had Jack and Annie from The Magic Tree House, Fancy Nancy, Purplicious and Pinkalicious, lady bugs, and many other creative costumes – they were priceless.  Following the literary parade, the students wrote about their book and then ended the celebration with a festive tea party.  I know it is something that they will always remember!

Our excitement around great stories is also palpable at our wonderful book fair in Hershenson Hall.  Each class is visiting the fair, and the students are buzzing about the chapter books, the nonfiction selections, the Judaic books and the wonderful displays.  Adults too are enjoying the fair as they purchase new best sellers, cook books, and amazing parenting guides.  I want to thank the committee – parents and staff – for all of their dedication to bring us this outstanding fair.  Our theme for this year is “The Magic of Reading” and I truly feel that our Stephen Wise community experienced this magical feeling.

10/21/2010 - Message from Principal, Tami Weiser

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This week I had a wonderful meeting with a group of sixth grade students. We sat in my office and talked about what they love at Stephen S. Wise, why they are glad to be here, and what they hope their legacy will be. It was an extremely informative conversation, and one which I will not soon forget. During the discussion each student shared their personal highlights – playing on a sports team, being in the play, being a member of Odyssey, making a first grade news report, collecting Tzedakah for earthquake victims – their stories went on and on. As each student had a different memory, the one thing that everyone had in common and was eager to share, was their relationships with their teachers. The students told me how great all of their teachers are, how they feel a special connection with every grade level, how they feel valued by general education, Hebrew/Judaic teachers, and specialists. It was heartwarming to listen to them talk about the adults in their lives, and I must admit that I share their enthusiasm. Our staff at Stephen S. Wise Elementary is outstanding, and I am honored to be a leader of this team. They are educators who really know about every student, and go out of their way to make sure that each child is valued. Beyond the teachers we are blessed to have an amazing office and support staff, who add to all of our lives every day. This community has many assets, and I hope you will join me in recognizing the asset of our professionals on campus.

Tami Weiser

10/13/2010 - Message from Principal, Tami Weiser

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One of the amazing things about Stephen S. Wise Elementary School is that we are always striving to improve.  Our newest exciting change is the refurbished art room.  Jan Navah, our outstanding art specialist, works with our students on developing their creative, expressive visual art talents.  I always enjoy walking into her studio to feel the excitement as kids come up with new ideas, have the opportunity to try a new media, or can’t wait to show me their finished project.  The culmination of this work is our Art Gallery, which will be displayed at Open House on June 1-2.  On these nights you will see first hand the work that your students have been doing in art throughout the year. 


I want to share with you some words that are on a poster in the art room that really express it best: 


Everything I Needed to Know I learned in the Art Room 


Never say anything unkind about something a classmate has created. 


Don’t hog all the colors. 


A picture is more interesting with contrast, movement and different points of view – so is life. 


Be kind to yourself if all your pictures don’t turn out, it happens to all artists. 


Making something for someone else can be a holy act, do it often. 


Keep an open mind about different kinds of art… something unforeseen may be come part of your expression some day. 


Purple houses, pink grass…. There’s no right or wrong way to color your picture – honor your creative voice – it’s what makes you unique. 


Paint from the heart, it will show – others will sense it.


I hope your child gets these powerful messages throughout their year of art instruction.  While public schools are cutting the arts, we continue to invest in our program and I look forward to seeing our students’ skills and enthusiasm continue to grow in this vital creative area. 


Tami Weiser

10/07/2010 - Message from Principal, Tami Weiser

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While we certainly enjoyed celebrating all of the wonderful holidays over the past few weeks, it is great to finally have a week of uninterrupted instructional time! The classes are all in full swing, having completed their initial assessments, and students are learning a great deal. I have had the opportunity to observe lessons in language arts, math, Hebrew, art, PE and much more. I am especially impressed by the level of groupings we have in reading, math and Hebrew which allows lessons to be differentiated for each student. Our teachers are busy working with outside experts on professional development in reading comprehension and vocabulary strategies from kindergarten to sixth grade. Today I met with these experts to review the ERB test scores at the individual student level, as well as their recent reading assessments to find out what are our areas of strength, and where there are areas we can continue to grow. In addition to the individual classes, students are getting a great deal out of their work in Project Studio, as they develop important critical thinking skills. I encourage you to actively discuss with your child what they are doing in class each day. Don’t simply ask, “How was your day?” Rather, ask them, “Tell me about what you did in math that was fun/hard/interesting today.” Or, “Can you teach me three new Hebrew words tonight?” Another thought is, “Describe the main character in the book/story you reading. Is this someone you would like to invite over for dinner?”

I look forward to sharing specific information on your student’s progress at their parent conferences next month. I’ll keep you posted on all of the wonderful instructional progress we make throughout the year.

Tami Weiser