How can we help our kids become lifelong readers?

How can we help our kids become lifelong readers?

      How can we help our kids become lifelong readers?   Years of research support that reading to children from birth helps them to associate reading with feelings of love. It helps to develop the needed vocabulary to be successful, and it allows them to build a wealth of background knowledge that helps them to interpret the world. And, let’s face it, reading to them while they are young is a joyful experience for both the...

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Teachers + Parents = Success 4 All

Teachers + Parents = Success 4 All

        Parental involvement plays a vital role in the success of a child’s education.  DCS strives to not only have good communication with parents but also provides resources to assist them in enhancing their child’s learning.  It is proven that when schools, families, and community groups work together to support learning, children tend to do better in school, stay in school longer, and like school more. Since...

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Literacy Learning in Elementary Schools

Literacy Learning in Elementary Schools

      Elementary classrooms across DeSoto County provide robust reading and writing curriculum through a balanced literacy framework. Gone are the days where the teacher stands at the front of the class calling on individual students to read sentences then assign reading and writing related activities. In this one-size-fits-all curriculum, struggling students tend to fall further behind while high achieving students are not...

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Making It Tangible: Moving from Concrete to Abstract

Making It Tangible: Moving from Concrete to Abstract

      True understanding takes place when a child grasps not only how but also why a process works. Research by Jerome Bruner (Bruner, 2000) states that instructional strategies build understanding for students when they move from the concrete (manipulatives or math tools) to the pictorial (visual models or drawings) to the abstract (symbols). CPA is an instructional technique used across the district in our mathematics...

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Grammar: Cornerstone of Communication

Grammar: Cornerstone of Communication

Grammar: Cornerstone of Communication   As the foundation of communication, the presence of grammar in the classroom is fundamental. Author and educator, Kelly Gallagher, states, “Let’s not forget that writing has become much more than a school activity; it has become a cornerstone for living a literate life.” In regards to grammar and conventions, what is our goal in Desoto County Schools? We aim for students to embrace the concepts of grammar...

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DCS K-2 Standards Based Report Card

DCS  K-2 Standards Based Report Card

    This school year, DeSoto County Schools opted to use a standards-based report card in Kindergarten, First Grade, and Second Grade. There are two main reasons for this change: to help prepare our students for the requirements set forth by the Literacy-Based Promotion Act (Senate Bill No. 2347/ MS Code 37-177-1) and to give them the opportunity to demonstrate mastery of their grade-level standards by the end of the school year. With...

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Cory Uselton, Mississippi High School Principal of the Year

Cory Uselton, Mississippi High School Principal of the Year

In August, I was named as the Mississippi High School Principal of the Year by the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP). Because of this award, my wife and I were invited to travel to Washington D.C. for the 2014 NASSP Principals’ Institute.  I was honored to represent DeSoto County Schools and the state of Mississippi at this prestigious event, and here is an account of our trip.   Sunday, September 7th   The...

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