September 2014 Letter from the Principal

Sage Canyon ElementaryDear Wrangler Community,

We have had an amazing start to our year, and several classes are already diving into projects. One of our sayings here at Sage Canyon is that we want to “Go Slow to Go Fast.”  This means that our focus for the first few weeks of school is building a powerful classroom community. We believe that a successful year must be built upon a strong foundation of clear expectations and empathy for one another. Teachers and students work very hard the first weeks getting to know each other and helping each other set goals for all of the 21st century outcomes they hope to achieve. Building a strong classroom community is important for several reasons. First, every student should feel safe and happy at school. Learning cannot take place until students feel safe and happy and building an inclusive, compassionate community is the stepping stone for creating this learning environment. Secondly, as a Project Based Learning School, we are constantly asking students to work in collaborative groups. This is much easier to do when they have built relationships with their classmates. Through a variety of discussions and team building activities, students learn a lot about each other and their classroom expectations. As they work through these tasks, students gain ownership of their learning environment. Finally, while building community, students learn to gain empathy and understanding of each other’s unique learning styles and talents. Building community allows kids to recognize the strengths of each student and learn how to put them together to be successful as a whole team.

We also recognize what a powerful component parental support is in creating a truly collaborative school community.  We welcome parent volunteers and love getting to say good morning and chat with parents who drop off and pick up.  Please know that we have two upcoming parent meetings that I would love to see you at. The first is our School Accountability Meeting (SAC) which will be Tuesday, Sept. 9 at 5:00 pm at the school in the main office conference room. The second is our Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) which meets on Wednesday, Sept. 10 at 6:30 pm.

Please remember that I am also a mom at this school, and I want nothing more  than for everyone’s educational experience to be supportive, rigorous, and fun.  My door is truly always open.

Take care,
Mandy Hill
Sage Canyon Principal