Principal's Weekly Message
Mrs. Cheri Copeland-Shull
Kindergarten Alphabet Party
Give me a P! Give me an A! Give me an R! Give me a T! Give me a Y! What does it spell? PARTY! And that is exactly what our kindergarten students did during their recent Alphabet Party.
In the past, we have had parents learning about the procedures and routines in a kindergarten classroom and ways to support their children at home, this year we had to make a few modifications. Our dedicated Kindergarten teachers, Mrs. Barb Eckhart, Mrs. Jessica Rippke, and Mrs. Amanda Schlageter, still wanted out students to have the opportunity to celebrate their success in learning the alphabet, so they got to work. With ideas in hand, they were able to come up with over 20 activities related to the alphabet that were stationed in the three kindergarten rooms. The kindergarten students were then able to move freely to different stations between the three rooms to celebrate their accomplishment, complete with snacks and letters of the alphabet!
It was certainly amazing to see the students actively engaged in their learning. All of these activities were planned by our amazing kindergarten teachers and pre-service teachers, who were all instrumental in making this event such a success!
Thank you to our Kindergarten Team, who led this wonderful learning opportunity for our students. Thank you for sharing educational ways to learn about the alphabet as our kindergarten students began their journey in learning how to read!
Upcoming Dorr Hive Events:
Fri., Dec. 3 Character Day-Wear RED for EMPATHY
Wed., Dec. 8 Skate Night at Ohio Skate (5-8 pm)
Thurs., Dec. 9 Dorr Parents’ Club Meeting (6:30 pm)
Fri., Dec. 10 Spirit Day (Wear your Dorr Spirit wear)
Fri., Dec. 17 Last Day Before Winter Break
Dec 18 - Jan 2 Winter Break
Mon. Jan 8 Students Return to School
Wild Animals Were on the Loose!
This past week, Dorr first grade teachers and students had the opportunity to transform themselves into an animal of their choice. Our district has adopted a new English Language Arts (ELA) curriculum from the American Reading Company, and it is divided into different units. The first grade unit that our students explored this week was about “Wild and Endangered Animals”.
In order to engage the students into this new unit, the teachers dressed up as animals to greet the students coming into the classrooms. Once the students came into the classroom, the students also got to join the fun by selecting an animal mask. The students eagerly participated and learned all about wild and endangered animals. This was a wonderful way to excite and encourage our students in reading and writing.
Thank you to our first grade team of Mrs. Beringer, Mrs. Hughes, and Mrs. Jimenez for inspiring our first grade students and encouraging growth in their reading and writing skills.
Dorr Parents’ Club and the Halloween Howler
Our Dorr Parents’ Club has been busily working to engage Dorr families as this pandemic continues to plague many things that we deem as “normal.” One of the first events that they planned this year was one that served as a fall “welcome back” and a celebration that allowed students to wear costumes. This event was billed as the “Halloween Howler” and it did not disappoint.
With a combination of candy stations shared by costumed characters, games a plenty, fun music and even time to play on the playground, the Dorr families had a wonderful time getting back to what is great about being in elementary school—having fun. It was evident that this was a terrific event for our families with the number of smiles that were seen on every student and family member that was wrapped around our blacktop and parking lot area. It was wonderful to see!
Thank you to our fabulous Dorr Parents’ Club for putting this family event together. We look forward to more events to connect with our families. Please join us at our next Dorr Parents’ Club meeting that will be held on Thursday, November 11 at 6:30 pm in the Dorr Elementary cafeteria. We hope to see you there to help us plan our next event.
An Outdoor Classroom
As we continue to think of creative ways to engage our students this school year, we have had to think beyond the walls of our building. With an idea and the help of a wonderful community partner, we were able to create a space that can be utilized as an outdoor classroom this past week.
We have been so fortunate to have a prairie at Dorr Elementary that allows the students to engage with their own environment and to learn skills that puts them in the role of scientist. To best utilize the prairie for instruction, we thought it would be a great idea to create an outdoor classroom space. At the same time, members of the Westgate Chapel community approached Dorr Elementary to see if they could help their neighbors of Dorr Elementary in any way. With these two forces—a creative idea and some committed labor—we were able to create a wonderful outdoor classroom space by the prairie for our students.
We are tremendously thankful to our Westgate Chapel friends who worked to support Dorr Elementary and the students we serve with this outdoor classroom. It is a welcome addition to our students’ learning. Thank you for serving the Dorr Elementary Community so well!
What Zone Are You In?
As we continue to support students’ Social and Emotional Learning needs, please feel free to ask your child what “Zone” he or she is in and you will probably get the answer: Red, Blue, Yellow, or hopefully Green.
But what does that mean? It means that your child is using the strategies taught in the “Zones of Regulation” curriculum—a color coordinated feeling regulation program. This Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) curriculum was implemented into our district three years ago and teaches our students to identify their feelings, while putting them into a “Zone.” These zones then help your child easily identify appropriate coping strategies or tools to use when feeling certain ways .
Did your child answer “Blue?” Then he or she is feeling down, tired, sad, bored, or sick. If your child answered "Yellow," he or she is probably feeling heightened - super excited, silly, or maybe overwhelmed. An answer of "Red" means your child is feeling angry, frustrated, or mad. And "Green" means your child is feeling happy, relaxed, calm, and ready to be his or her best self.
Once students can identify their "zone," they are then taught appropriate "tools" to handle that zone. In the red zone, students may help their bodies feel better by taking deep breaths, counting, or taking a break. In the blue zone, students may help their body "wake" up by getting a drink of water, taking a walk, or talking to someone to help them feel better.
To learn more about this curriculum, please visit www.zonesofregulation.com. At Dorr Elementary, we are very excited about this curriculum and its implementation as it has been such a helpful tool for our students.
“BEE” Involved with our Dorr Parents’ Club
Each school year, I am in awe of the wonderful support that we receive from our Dorr Parents’ Club. They provide tremendous support to our school both financially and socially.
Every month the Parents’ Club offers the opportunity for parents and families to participate in meetings to discuss ways to support the school. There is also an opportunity to share your feedback on what you would like to see for the students of Dorr.
In regard to financial support, the Dorr Parents’ Club coordinates a number of fund raising events each year which support the yearly goal. This year the goal will be discussed at our first Parents’ Club meeting. We greatly appreciate your participation with the fundraising opportunities to support Dorr Elementary.
In supporting the school socially, there are a number of fun events that the Dorr Parents’ Club have sponsored over the years: Fall Family Fun Night/Ice Cream Social, Trunk or Treat Night, Family Dances, Movie Nights, DragonFest, or help with teacher tasks at our Elf Nights. We know that this school year continues to be a bit different so we would love to hear your thoughts and ideas on how we can support our students and families.
As you can see, the Dorr Parents’ Club provides a wealth of support for our school, and we greatly appreciate their efforts. Please plan to join us at our first Parents’ Club meeting of the school year on Thursday, September 9th at 6:30 pm. We would love to have your input!
Full STEAM Ahead!
It is “official”! Last year, Dorr Elementary was named one of 10 new STEM/STEAM Designated Schools by the Ohio Department of Education! When we started this journey a few years ago, our staff made the conscious choice to be a school that celebrated innovation and the four C’s of Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking Skills, and Creativity. Through a focused effort of our Dorr STEAM Team and our wonderful community partners, we have been recognized as a school that encompasses a culture of inquiry, problem-solving, and provides connections to the environment.
The STEAM Designation has been spurred on by the initiative of Project PRAIRIE. This initiative was a collaborative effort with the Toledo Zoo and the Dorr Parents’ Club to create a prairie on our school property. With the help of our students and staff, the prairie was planted in the winter of 2018. As our prairie has grown, so has our students’ involvement in exploring their environment and preserving our nature’s habitat.
We are excited about what Dorr Elementary has been able to accomplish with the help of our partners: The Toledo Zoo, the Toledo Symphony, the Toledo Museum of Art, the Lucas County Soil and Water Conservation District, BGSU, BGSU NWO, and the Dana Corp. In addition, our Dorr STEAM Team of Julie Daniels, Kristy DiSalle, Barb Eckhart, Kelly Kahmann, Brad Kerns, Jennifer Mercer, and Kathy Zeitler provided the necessary leadership to turn this vision into a reality. With these partners and the STEAM Team leadership in place, it is “full STEAM ahead” for Dorr Elementary.
2022-2023 Reconfiguration Plans (click on the link for many details)
In May, 2021, we announced plans to allow the district to better serve Springfield students. At the time of the announcement we shared that data studied over a five-year period informed us that rather than the need for a new school building to educate a growing number of students, the greater need was to examine options that took advantage of existing facilities, the talents of educators, and available resources. These data and our research led to the conclusion that to better serve our students, we should refine grade-level instructional targets and reconfigure our elementary buildings