GTCC Golden Apple News
"Golden" Apple  

                        By Diana Knudson        December, 2017


In the introduction of The Formative Five--Fostering Grit, Empathy, and other SUCCESS SKILLS Every Student Needs written by Thomas R. Hoerr, is a must read for teachers and administrators.  The book pulled me in during the Introduction and kept me for 168 pages.  This was the paragraph on page 5 that started a good and practical read.  “Not long ago success in school meant success in life.  We also believed that things like grit and determination were traits people were born with, not skills that could be developed over time.  Over the past few decades, hard and soft sciences have produced and impressive body of evidence that teaches us two very new, very important things.  First, that we can take our innate abilities and cultivate them, just like we build up muscle, dexterity, and language fluency.  And secondly, that social and emotional skills matter just as much in determining life satisfaction and success as traditional intelligence.  The use of the word “skills” here is intentional.  These qualities are not only innate.  They can be taught.  And, they can be learned (Hoerr, Thomas.  The Formative Five, ASCD Books, 2017, page 5).  WHO YOU ARE IS MORE IMPORTANT THAT WHAT YOU KNOW.  The five most important formative skills necessary for success in both the work world and relationships of all kinds:  EMPATHY, SELF-CONTROL, INTEGRITY, EMBRACING DIVERSITY, GRIT.


            Have a great holiday season.  I plan to visit some friends I have not spent time with for a while, spoil several grandkids with trips to the Children’s Museum in Great Falls, and whip out a few watercolor masterpieces now that I am taking lessons.  I love painting and did not know it until two months ago.  If there is a hobby you think you might like, TRY IT NOW.  Don’t wait.  I have lots of lost time to make up for now so my own children are getting framed pieces from their mother.  Hope to see all of you in the NEW YEAR.  We better have a drawing at the end of December.  E-mail Brianna your name to be entered in our drawing.  Congratulations to Jonathan Martin of Chinook Schools, winner of last month's drawing!



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Upcoming Committee Meetings & Events... 


December 2017
Math Committee Meeting 3D International Great Falls
Reading Committee Meeting 3D International Great Falls
January 2018
The Arts- Visual Arts
The Arts- Media Arts
3D International Great Falls
English Language Arts 3D International Great Falls
Social Studies 3D International Great Falls


Web Resources, Grants and Other News...

STREAM Online Module Calendar

 Standards-Based Teaching Renewing Educators Across Montana (STREAM) will offer over 25 online, mini-courses during the 2017-2018 school year.  Courses are designed to help K-12 mathematics teachers improve their knowledge of mathematics, deepen their understanding of our state standards, and engage their students in meaningful learning of mathematics. STREAM modules are free and teachers can earn 15 OPI renewal units for successful completion.   You can learn more by reading the STREAM Online Module Calendar and the STREAM Online Module Descriptions.


Please join us online by signing up for a course.  Please help us get the word out by distributing this information widely to K-12 mathematics teachers in your district. Thank you!!

The STREAM Leadership Team

Jennie Luebeck – Montana State University

Matt Roscoe – University of Montana

Lisa Scott – Billings Public Schools


Resorce links from PBS and Sesame Street on discussing trauma with young children. 



Another link


Better Lesson - Master Teacher Lessons for Math, Science, ELA, and blended subject areas. 

Free Activities for Teaching Science and Math With Music, a new website from the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz and the NYU MusEDLab, features free resources to help teachers incorporate music in science and math lessons. The activities and apps are designed for all students, kindergarten through college. Subjects covered include geometry and physics, among many others, and all lessons teach students about the strong relationship between music and STEM learning.

Exploratorium Science Snacks Hands-On Activities

Created by the Exploratorium, Science Snacks "are tabletop exhibits or explorations of natural phenomena that teachers or students can make using common, inexpensive, readily available materials." There are hundreds of hands-on activities in the collection, and they're created to be easily digested with a short photo/video intro, a materials list, helpful hints, and advice.

Check out News ELA Nonfiction Literacy and Current Events.  Free leveled news, primary sources, and more, with standards-aligned formative assessments. 


Subscribe to OPI's 3 Big Ideas Newsletter.


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