Academics at Olympic View
There is always something exciting happening at Olympic View Elementary School! Our diverse learning community nurtures the development of the whole child. Our strong academic program is infused with art, technology, drama, movement, music and social skillsdevelopment. By teaching our students in the ways they learn best, we help make sure every child experiences success every day.
In addition to implementing the Seattle School District Academic Standards, we have integrated technology and arts instruction into allof our classrooms. Additionally, our teachers are implementing National Science Foundation inquiry based science and National Urban Alliancebest practices in literacy instruction. Our highly trained and dedicated teaching staff is comprised of professionals who are well versed in current theories of teaching and learning.
Highlights of Learning at Olympic View Elementary
- Full day kindergarten program.
- Multi-Arts instruction (integrated visual and performing arts) for all students in grades K-5.
- Instrumental music instruction for students in grade 5.
- Overnight environmental education camp for 5th graders.
- Class field trip for 4th graders, culminating their study of Washington State history.
- Class field trip to Olympia, WA for 5th Graders, culminating their year-long study of civics.
- Annual PTA drama production for 3rd, 4th and 5th graders.
- Hands-on, inquiry-based science instruction.
- We are a PBIS school.
- Multi-Age special education classrooms for students with moderate special needs.
- Resource room support for students with learning disabilities.
Barbara Bruecher, Physical Education
Welcome to Olympic View’s Physical Education program! This is an exciting place to be. Let me walk you through what P.E. looks like today. The students at Olympic View are exposed to a success oriented approach to education. This means that every student is encouraged to do their best every time they come into the gym and to focus on individual success while having fun at the same time. The program is not set up to focus on winning, competition, and singling out the non-athlete. Everyone thrives in Physical Education at Olympic View. Everyone is an athlete and can succeed, while at the same time students are taught competition in terms of setting goals, looking for ways to take their skills to the nextlevel, and working in cooperative activities with other students.
Here is example of what students are introduced to at Olympic View. At the beginning of the year students are taught to run properly and move toward running a mile. Then the gym is transformed into a Western cosmic bowling alley with Christmas lights and Country music. Next, Roller Skating is introduced and reviewed and in between these activities students are introduced to sport portfolios that encourage skillsassessment and improvement. In addition to these activities the students are taught to use the climbing wall, how to ride a unicycle, jugglingskills, jump rope, and the list goes on. Below is a list that of activities that the students participate in throughout the school year.
Physical Education Schedule
Fall: skating, bowling, climbing wall, circus arts, mile prep, stations, fitness testing, and cooperative games and activities
Winter: pedometers, step aerobics, archery, scooters, speed stacks and basketball
Spring: biking, field day prep, baseball skills and gymnastics
Activities that we as a community participate in to promote fitness and goal setting:
- ‘Bike to School’ Month (May)
- ‘Bike to School’ Day (May)
The Multi-Arts Program at OV
Every student in our school attends Multi-Arts classes. Liz Law introduces students to the basic principles in four art areas including: Visual Arts, Dance, Theatre, and Vocal Singing. We believe it is important for students to have the opportunity to create, perform, and respond to art in all four areas throughout the school year. Various groupings allow students the chance to work on honing individual skills as well as working with partners, small groups, the whole class, and even whole school projects! Our students with special needs are always included in grade-level appropriate classes and this helps us build a strong sense of school community for our diverse student population.
We are always learning and teaching one another in Multi-Arts. Each time a student’s work goes on display, the whole school is enriched and invigorated, and new connections are made across subject areas and grade levels. Through this interaction our community is renewed.
If you have some time and are interested in helping with displays of student work, or assisting in the classroom, please contact Liz Law.
What is Positive Discipline?
Positive Discipline is the philosophical framework we use in working with students at Olympic View. Based on the research of Jane Nelson, the goal of Positive Discipline is to provide children with the social skills they need to be responsible and respectful members of their community. More than a program or curriculum, a Positive Discipline school creates an environment where students feel a sense of belonging, where adults understand the motivation behind a child’s behavior, and where “misbehavior” is viewed as an opportunity to learn.
What does Positive Discipline look like at Olympic View?
At Olympic View, students are taught three guiding principles for their behavior:
1. We take care of ourselves
2. We take care of each other
3. We take care of Olympic View
Our teachers help students understand what our guiding principles mean in the different contexts within which children find themselves – such as in the classroom, on the school bus, in the cafeteria, or on the playground. We reinforce these principles through the ongoing use ofschool and class meetings.
What happens in a class meeting?
Classroom meetings are an essential component of Positive Discipline. One of the goals of classroom meetings is to empower children to develop relationships based on mutual respect, and to understand how their behavior impacts those around them. By participating in classroom meetings, children learn important life skills such as listening, taking turns, taking responsibility, helping one another, and appreciating other points of view. In classroom meetings, children also practice critical thinking, problem solving, and democratic procedures.
The exact format of a class meeting can vary from classroom to classroom depending on the age of the children. In general, students sit in acircle for class meetings and begin with compliments. The agenda of a class meeting is determined by both the students and their teacher, andeach classroom has a process for students to add items to the class meeting agenda. Class meetings can focus on any issues that impact theclassroom community such as planning a class celebration or addressing a problem that impacts one or more members of the class.
Does this mean that there are no consequences for misbehavior?
The Positive Discipline focus on solutions rather than punishments and rejects the notion that to make children do better, we must first make them feel worse. While the vast majority of “misbehavior” is managed through the class meetings and opportunities for students to solve problems cooperatively, some children exhibit repeated dangerous, disruptive or hurtful behaviors. In these cases, there are several interventions we use such as including the family in problem solving, problem solving with a school administrator, providing intensive social skills support, appropriately allowing the student to experience the natural consequences of his or her behavior, and focusing on encouragement and building the student’s sense of connection to his or her school community. In the case of violent behavior, to ensure the safety of all of our students, a student will be removed from his or her classroom.
Where can I find out more?
There is an excellent series of books for parents on Positive Discipline written by Jane Nelsen that are widely available at bookstores. You can also visit the Positive Discipline website at www.positivediscipline.com