Featured Blog Post - The Power of Mindset: A Student Perspective

Once in awhile we will share a blog post written by a “guest blogger” or a post we have found that aligns with our theme for the week.  This week, we are sharing a student’s journey to understanding growth mindset. She writes about how adopting a growth mindset impacted her life and her outlook on her education.  The post comes from Mindset Works, an organization focused on working with educators, students, and parents to teach and promote Carol Dweck'sresearch on growth mindset.  As we continue to explore growth mindset with our Pleasantdale students, we hope many of them will notice their thinking evolve as well.  
The Power of Mindset: A Student Perspective   by Gabrielle Landry
Does what you think about your ability really matter?  If you had asked me that question a few years ago, my response would have been, “No, not really.”  But over the past two years, I've changed from the negative, stressed-out, perfectionist teenage girl I was my freshman year to the joyful person I a…

Thinking About New Year's Resolutions . . . the Growth Mindset Way!

Winter break has arrived at Pleasantdale School District 107!  Not only are we excited for the time off to spend with families and loved ones, but we are also intrigued by the promise of the new year that lies ahead.  For students, teachers, and families, winter break signifies the “halfway point” of the school year.  It is a time when we can look back and celebrate our accomplishments, what we’ve achieved, and how we’ve grown so far over the past school year.

We tend to mark the coming of a new year by setting a goal that reflects what we hope to accomplish in the year ahead. Winter break affords us the chance to pause, maybe hit the reset button, and go after those goals that might have been just out of reach the previous year. We get to start with a clean slate and infinite possibilities as we enter 2018 and the second half of our school year.  What a great time to set a new goal!

Our Strategic Blueprint goal area of Building Learning Capacity states that we will build capacity for …

Unique Opportunities in Our Schools

There are so many qualities about Pleasantdale District 107 that make it a wonderful place to learn! This week we want to highlight a few of the unique opportunities students have as they go through our schools.

As we work to support the Portrait of a Pleasantdale Graduate which is a part of our Strategic Blueprint, we prioritize providing unique experiences during the school day to help our students become knowledgeable and empathetic communicators, respectful and creative problem solvers, passionate and confident individuals, and collaborative and responsible global citizens. Each year our students have the opportunity to participate in activities to support these characteristics. For example, seventh graders are making holiday cards and ornaments for families with children in the NICU at Advocate Children's Hospital in Park Ridge, and our sixth-grade students are making ornaments and writing holiday letters to veterans. Eighth grade students will go to Feed My Starving Childr…

The Value of Extra-Curricular Activities for Kids

The Value of Extra-Curricular Activities for Kids
This week’s blog supporting Pleasantdale School District 107’s mission of “Creating a Community of Inspired Learners” focuses on the value of our students participating in extra-curricular activities.  Extra-curricular activities, by definition, are activities that are in addition to the normal course of study.  Therefore, these are not meant to replace but enhance and support the development of the whole child by providing new and additional learning opportunities beyond the usual time at school.  
Here are some other benefits to kids participating in extra-curricular activities both at school and within the community:
Trying and experiencing new things District 107 continues to study what it means to have a growth mindset.  I believe growth mindset fits in very well with this first benefit.  See, in order for someone to become very good at something, they first have to be exposed to that something.  From there, they have to spend time …

A Season of Giving: Service Opportunities for Families

The Portrait of a Pleasantdale Graduate, included in our Strategic Blueprint, focuses on supporting students to become knowledgeable, empathetic, respectful, creative, passionate, confident, collaborative and responsible.   Looking at those qualities, they are qualities we want not only in our students, but also in our colleagues, friends and community.

We are entering a time of year that can feel frantic and rushed as we fill our calendars with celebrations grand and small. We spend extra time with our families, giving thanks and reminiscing about the events of the past year. While many of us are planning how we will celebrate the season, others in our community are in need.  During this holiday season there will be people in our community sitting with loved ones in hospitals, there will be children with a holiday wish list consisting only of items to meet basic needs rather than toys, there will be pets living in shelters who seek attention and affection, there will be elderly commu…

Schoology: A Door to Communicating with Your Child

How many of you have had this same exchange with your child when he/she greets you at the end of a school day? We know our kids are engaged in a variety of learning activities each day, but too often parents do not get to hear about all the learning that occurs. We know a strong parent-school partnership is essential to student success, and because of this, we want to support ways for our parents and guardians to communicate with their children about their learning. As a parent, accessing Schoology is a great way to open lines of communication with your child to learn more about their learning!

Last year, Pleasantdale adopted Schoology as our Learning Management System (LMS). One of the central reasons for doing so was to enable our students to become more self-sufficient when they leave the classroom, which I explained in more detail in a blog post last year. Schoology allows students access to digital resources and a calendar of assignments anytime they have internet access, and…

Introduction to PSD107 District Blog

Over the course of the past several years, our district has had a focus on improving communication with our school community.  Some of the improvements include the implementation of a communication plan, the use of social networks to get our message out, and the use of blogs to provide the community with more detail about the direction of our schools.  As a district, we have found that these new communication methods contribute to a better-informed community.  We have also learned to be more reflective regarding what is working and what can be improved when it comes to communications.

As part of this reflection, we will be changing the structure of how we deliver our blog.  In the past, all three of our building administrators have authored individual blogs each week.  The feedback we received from parents was that having three blogs to read was too much, and the information found in these blogs was redundant.  Moving forward, we plan on hosting a single district blog with a guest auth…