Woodlawn Principal's Blog 11/15/19

Busy week here at Woodlawn!  Boys Basketball games are happening, the Poms Squad is doing a great job and our 8th graders headed over to SHS for their Fall Musical.  The cold weather is a bummer, but we live in the midwest and that is what we get. 

 Wednesday, November 20th - Wear PINK to Woodlawn

Two years ago, the Woodlawn community lost a wonderful young student in a tragic accident.  After meeting with her close friends, we decided that this Wednesday would be a great day to celebrate her life.  If possible, remind your Woodlawn student(s) to wear pink in honor of Rachel Vondrak. Look for more ways we are honoring Rachel’s memory throughout this blog.  

 Book Fair & Another Opportunity to Honor Rachel  

The PTO SCHOLASTIC BOOK FAIR is coming to the Woodlawn Learning Center, November 19th - 22nd.  Mark your calendars!  

New this year to the fair is E-WALLET - a pre-pay payment option for students.  Give your child a secure, cash-free way to shop the fair.  Simply create an account, pre-authorize a spending limit and have funds immediately available.  Set up an account for each child now through November 22nd with this link (scroll down to the “Go Cash-Free e-Wallet section.)

Come to Our Book Fair!

Rachel’s friends will have a basket at the Book Fair where students can purchase a book, put a Remember Rachel sticker in there and write a note if they would like.  These books will be donated to a school in need.  


Social Emotional Learning, or SEL, has been intentionally embedded into District 96 instruction. Below you will find a short video clip to provide further information on the purpose, benefits, instruction, and reporting throughout the school year. If you are interested in more information regarding social emotional skills at your child's grade level, parent guides are available under the curriculum and instruction quick links on the District 96 webpage

Social Emotional Learning Video


Social Emotion Learning- Part II 

As was shared in the video "What does Social Emotional Learning  Mean in District 96?", this year students are receiving instruction on the social emotional targets throughout the school year. What does instruction look like for students? 

Instruction can look different across settings and the target being addressed. For some targets such as Using expected behavior across all settings teachers may include an explicit discussion within the classroom where students help to identify what expected behavior looks like, sounds like and how it aligns with the specific activity. Following the discussion, students are provided opportunities to engage in the practice of these skills. 

Once explicit instruction has occurred, teachers may embed the targets more implicitly, incorporating them into daily learning activities. For example, for the target Utlizie perspective-taking to analyze how one's behavior may affect others,  in literacy or social studies teachers may ask students to take the characters' perspectives and apply to their own perspective of a situation. Overall, instruction is occurring across settings both explicitly and implicitly with ongoing feedback provided to students.

Visit the PTO Monthly Blog - Wait!  It is the NEW addition of the PTO Monthly Blog!  Who says that there are no Thanksgiving miracles?  

Student Misconduct - Cheating

Parents, please be aware that we are having instances across grade levels with academic cheating in the classroom on tests and assignments.  We will continue to discuss this topic with our students and will be monitoring their work. Please have a discussion with your student about academic honesty.  Hopefully before I do.  Thank you. 

The Patriot Consortium Mathematics Placement Process

Over the last few years Stevenson High School and the feeder middle schools have created a scope and sequence and aligned the curriculum to the Common Core Standards for Mathematics. Their work defines four strands of mathematical proficiency to highlight attributes of a proficient mathematical thinker. Their criteria will serve to create a portrait of each student for use in recommending a Stevenson placement that matches a student's content knowledge as well as level of mathematics proficiency at this time. READ MORE regarding the Patriot Consortium Mathematics Placement Process

Stevenson invites students in Pre-K through Grade 8 to submit poster designs for Consortium Orchestra, Band, and Choir posters. Entries are due by Fri., Nov. 29.


8th Grade Remembering Rachel

On Friday, November 22nd, 8th grade students will be signing a poster board in loving memory of Rachel.  This poster will be displayed at conferences on Monday and Tuesday of the following week.  

Student Report Card Access Nov. 22 

Your student’s report card will be available for you to access online NEXT FRIDAY, Nov. 22, AFTER 3 PM. If you need assistance, please CLICK HERE for instructions to view your student’s report card, to switch between your children’s report cards, and more. Report cards will be available for online access after 3 pm on Nov. 22.

Acceso a las Boletas de Calificaciones de los Estudiantes el 22 de noviembre después de las 3 PM

La boleta de calificaciones de su estudiante estará disponible en línea el PRÓXIMO VIERNES, 22 de noviembre DESPUÉS DE LAS 3 PM. Si necesita ayuda, por favor VER LAS INSTRUCCIONES PARA VER LA BOLETA DE CALIFICACIONES DE SU ESTUDIANTE, intercambiar entre boletas de calificaciones de sus hijos, y más. Las boletas de calificaciones estarán disponibles en línea después de las 3 p.m. el 22 de noviembre.

Spanish AAPPL Assessment

Dear Families - 

 In the month of December, 8th grade students will participate in the AAPPL (The ACTFL Assessment of Performance toward Proficiency in Languages) assessment to assess their communicative competency with the Spanish language.  The purpose of this assessment is three-fold: 

  1. D96 will collect valuable data that will inform our instruction to continue to enhance our Spanish curriculum and instruction. 

  2. Stevenson High School will use this proficiency data to make initial recommendations for Spanish coursework when your student is in high school. 

  3. Students will have the opportunity to have experience with an assessment that can lead them to earning the Seal of Biliteracy on their High School diploma when they are in high school.  

Tell me more about the assessment 

Your child’s Spanish Teacher will share the specific assessment schedule.  The tasks included in this assessment are similar to tasks we use during our regular instruction and assessment cycle in Spanish classes.  The students are asked to engage in interpretive listening and reading tasks. This includes listening or reading authentic Spanish pieces and answering questions, in English, about those pieces based on language the students already know or context given.  Additionally, the students will respond to writing prompt in Spanish utilizing learned language skills. The final piece of the assessment is an interpersonal speaking opportunity in which your child will perform for the classroom teacher and will be scored based on a rubric co-constructed with all Spanish teachers across the consortium (D96, D102, D103, and D125) for consistency of expectations.  

How will this information be used to make course recommendations?   

Your student’s level of proficiency (interpretive listening and reading as well as writing) as indicated by this assessment combined with an analysis of their interpersonal speaking skills and teacher input will be used to make an initial course recommendation that is optimal for your student.  You will receive this information in the mail late January/early February prior to needing to select courses at Stevenson. You can find the specific course sequence in this course book.  In general, recommendations will be made for the following courses based on this assessment:  

  • Spanish 2

  • Spanish 2-3 Accelerated

  • Spanish 3-4 Accelerated

As this is a recommendation, your family will have the opportunity to provide input as you make the final selection for a course should your child choose to continue studying the Spanish language.  

What is the Seal of Biliteracy?

The Seal of Biliteracy is intended to recognize students for multilingual skills and is indicated on a student’s high school diploma.  Additionally, Illinois universities are obligated to offer college credit to students that have earned the Seal of Biliteracy through meeting the requirements.

For more information about this opportunity, use this link and click on the Seal of Biliteracy Tab.  

What if my child would like to participate in a benchmark or placement assessment for a language other than Spanish?  

Students who have prior coursework or experience in Chinese, French, German, Hebrew or Latin, and are interested in potential placement in one of these language programs beyond the introductory level, may also sign up for the corresponding language benchmark exam.

The dates these are held are:  

  • Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020

  • Saturday, April 25, 2020

  • Friday, July 10, 2020

  • Friday, July 24, 2020

You can register for testing through the World Languages Division by contacting Sylvia Lima at [email protected].  Use this link to access the information you may need.

Fall Family Educator Conferences

There is still time to sign up for our fall conferences!  Conference sign up ends on November 25th at 2p.m. 



Congratulations to our 6th Grade, Chamber and 7th & 8th Grade Orchestra groups for putting on a terrific concert last night.  I am trying to decide between Shark Attack or Radioactive as my favorite song last night! Thank you to Ms. Wronkiewicz for working with this amazing group of students.  

6th Grade Orchestra Concert


Click here for the Woodlawn Daily Announcements

Finally, it is just about time for my friend and colleague Chris Kuhlman (pronounced Cool min) to walk out the Woodlawn doors one last time.  After 42 years of service to District 96, spending most of his career at Woodlawn, Country Meadows and Kildeer , Kuhlio (my nickname for him) is going to retire.  On January 1, 2020, Chris will begin the next phase of his life, focusing on his lovely wife and their farm in Burlington Wi., where Chris raises sheep. Through the years, I have given him a hard time because his hair cuts tend to coincide with the sheep getting sheared.  I have always felt that he was trying to save a couple of dollars and just got in line with the herd. All kidding aside, Chris has performed his job in a way that would make all of us proud. He is a throwback to a time where hard work and character were how a person was measured.  Chris rarely missed a day, many times working past his hours of responsibility and always making sure I was following the rules to ensure student safety. As a school, Woodlawn always looks great and he has made sure that his crew had our buildings ready for students to focus on learning.  If there ever was an issue, Chris was on it. Spill in the hallway, Mr. Chris is on it. Water fountain not working, Mr. Chris is on it. Pipe burst in a classroom at 2a.m., Mr. Chris is on it. Water well acting up, Mr. Chris is on it. Ten inches of snow fell on Sunday, Mr. Chris is on it. I could go on and on about this man and the work he has done, but that isn’t his style.  He would rather walk away without any fanfare, saying to me that he is just doing his job. Chris, you will be missed and the entire Woodlawn community and thank you for everything you have done to make this building and school the cleanest, safest place it could possibly be.  

Chris Kuhlman retirement