Whittier Elementary School

School Highlights 2017 - 2018

  • The Whittier Way- Students and adults participated in following the Whittier Way, earning Bulldog Bucks for being respectful, being responsible, being a learner, and being in control.  This included an emphasis on being prepared to be good learners and taking responsibility for yourself and your actions.  Periodic “stores” were held in which students could spend their Bulldog Bucks.  In addition, students and adults focused on “filling buckets”, where they focused on ways for others to feel good about themselves.
  • Character Plus-. Students learned about a character trait each month through weekly meetings with the counselors that were supported by teachers throughout the building.  Students learned about cooperation, responsibility, compassion, empathy, gratitude, respect, perseverance, ambition, courage, integrity, patience and citizenship.
  • Awards Assemblies with Learning Celebrations- Students celebrated success with quarterly awards assemblies in which they received recognition for effort and achievement. This year, our theme of Legos allowed us to focus on critical thinking as well as working as a team. Visits from the Washington High School Marching Band and Professional Wrestlers helped to encourage students to building their character.  Students won medals for earning A’s and B’s on their grade card along with good attendance, good behavior and character, and good effort. 
  • Talent Show-- We had our third annual student talent show which show cased our students’ vast array of talents. Our students showed great poise and courage as they performed and the audience joined in for an exciting end to the school year.
  • Jump Start to School- Incoming kindergarten students were invited to attend school a week early to help with the transition to school. Teachers provided a ½ day of curriculum to student that included read alouds, introduction to Bulldog Bucks, experience with routines and procedures.  They learned how to navigate the breakfast and lunch routines, as well as traveling through the hallways to each special class throughout the week.
  • Family Activities- There were several activities throughout the year for families to enjoy together. Several classrooms hosted their own family events, putting a spotlight on student work and learning. Third grade invited families to a “World’s Fair” where a culmination of learning was shared. Our Parent committee continuously updated the school Facebook page which has increased parent communication. The Family/Community Liaison coordinated a schoolwide celebration with Mr. Stinky Feet, and our school carnival was as big as ever. 
  • Toddler Time- The Family/Community Liaison hosted weekly Toddler Time on Wednesday mornings for toddlers and pre-schoolers to participate in school readiness activities while parents developed their relationships through volunteer work for the school. 
  • On-going Staff Development- Staff participated in professional development activities that included a continued study of reader development, study of teaching writing through Writer’s Workshop and continued work with the Marzano effective elements of instruction.  Intense focus was placed on early development of numeracy, including ways to diagnose needs and intervene early.
  • Enriched and diverse experiences- Students participated in a variety of activities and field trips that extended learning into the community, including a Fifth grade college visit to KU, work with Schlagle library, fieldtrips to the farm, fire station, Old Shawnee Town, and museums among others.
  • Collaboration- Teachers worked collaboratively to meet the needs of all students, with special education and ESL services teachers working directly with teachers in classrooms.  Teachers worked collaboratively in professional learning communities to study and plan together.
  • Student achievement- Students continue to work on increasing skills in reading, writing, math and science.  More kindergartners left kindergarten reading than ever before!  Students continue to improve their effort and thinking skills. 
  • Health services- Students received health and nutrition services through programs coordinated by the school nurse and counselors such as Score 1 for Health, a fruits and vegetables healthy snack program, and the Back Snack program. 
  • Pajamas!- Teachers and parents volunteered to coordinate getting a new pair of pajamas donated and distributed to every student in the building, along with a free book, for the holidays. 
  • School Activities- Students participated in a variety of activities, including Kidzone, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Good News Club, Art Club, Opera Club and Garden Club for enrichment after school. Girls on the Run was continued to encourage positive living and self confidence in our 4th and 5th grade girls.  The girls and sponsors culminated both semesters with a 5k run at Children’s Mercy Soccer Stadium.  Community volunteers ran a sports club for 40 Fifth grade students each week.  The student council was more active than ever and coordinated many activities throughout the year.
  • Caring for Kids- Whittier began a collaboration with neighborhood partners through the Caring for Kids program.  Partnerships with a neighbourhood church and local businesses continued with members from the church volunteering at the school with programs such as Backsnacks. A local business has remained very involved, running a sports club for students and providing treats and meals for snacks during evening activities. 
  • Helping the community- Whittier students and staff participated in numerous activities to help support others in the community, including participating in the United Way Campaign, bringing in food donations for Bethel during the holidays, and raising over $1000 for Pennies for Patients -Leukemia Foundation.  Whittier students showed real compassion for others. 
  • Morning Walking Club- Students who arrived early for school participated in a social walking club on the playground.

Whittier's Mission Statement

Professional, dedicated teachers providing effective instruction to help students become: confident, contributing, life-long learners in a safe, caring, and engaging environment fully supported by our parents and community.

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