Color block logo of Deal Alice Deal Weekly Bulletin

November 3, 2008
"Think globally. Listen compassionately. Act inclusively."
Thought for the Week

"A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops."
-- Henry Brooks Adams

Bell Schedule
Monday - Bell I
Tuesday - Bell I
Wednesday - Bell II
Thursday - Bell I - (Career Day)
Friday - Bell I - with a return to HR at 3pm to distribute report cards.
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October Students of the Month

It is time to honor those who have  merited the coveted distinction of Student of the Month for October!
Team Aztecs
Julian Lopez
Erika Ventura
Team Green Scholars 
 Ariel Garay-Flores
Maren Roberts
Team Olympians
Ethan Cannon
Tasianna Paolisso
Team Braveheart 
 Chris Coleman
Monica Diaz-Lopez
Team Odyssey
Sean Kelly
Paris Washington

Team Olympians
Brandon Martinez
Khyla Link
Congratulations to you!  Thank you for your good work!
International Mindedness
This week we look a bit closer at the IB standard of
"international-mindedness on the part of the adults and the students in the school community."

Each school does this in a different way, reflecting its community.  At Deal, we want to build on a very solid foundation - world language options, travel to other countries, clubs that address human rights and other topics, and an International Night.  For our students, this standard will bring global concerns and issues directly into the classroom through instruction.  But what does it mean for the school to promote "international-mindedness" on the part of adults in the community? Could it be that we have to find additional ways to connect to the many embassies and consulates, as well as the larger international institutions, that populate the DC area?  What would it look like to have a school that played a role in expanding the understanding of the adults in its community?  These questions are being explored and we welcome suggestions and ideas from parents, teachers, and students.

Upcoming Activities!

Student Council non-perishable food drive begins

HD Cooke Buddy Day!
6th grade transition coffee chat #1 with Ms. Kim, 9-10 am in Rm N101
Volleyball Game,
Deal vs Hart,
at Hart, 5:30 pm

Career Day
 "New to Deal" Teachers Meeting, 3:30 N101
Deal Night, 6:30 - 8 pm
Report cards issued
LSRT meeting, 7:30 am
Boys' Soccer Game,
Deal vs Friendship,
at Deal, 4 pm

Saturday & Sunday
Politics & Prose Book Store sale!  Please come support our school!
Cross Country meet
DCIAA Championship
Ft. DuPont Park, 9:30 am

November 11th
Veterans Day (Holiday)
November 12
Deal Open House #1

November 13
Department Chairs Meeting
Family Math Night 
November 18th
Principal Kim visits Murch @ 6pm

November 19th

Mann Buddy Day!

November 20th

Faculty meeting
PTA Parent Education Workshop, 7 pm
Principal Kim visits Mann @ 6 pm

November 26
Student Council Thanksgiving Assembly

November 27-28

Thanksgiving holiday

December 2nd
Mid-Advisory Progress Reports sent home
Picture make-up day
December 3rd
6th grade transition coffee chat #2 with Ms. Kim, 9-10 am in Rm N101

December 4th
"New to Deal" teachers meeting

December 5th
Geography Bee competition
LSRT meeting, 7:30 am

December 8th
Parent Teacher Conference day
(students not in school)

December 11th
Department chairs meeting
Winter Concert, 7 pm

December 13th
Holiday Greens Sale

December 16th
Deal Open House #2

December 18th
Faculty meeting

December 19th
Student Council Winter Assembly
Last day of school for students (Winter Holiday)

December 22nd & 23rd
Staff development for Deal teachers

January 5th

School resumes after Winter Break!

January 7th
6th grade transition coffee chat #3 with Ms. Kim, 9-10 am in Rm N101

January 9th
LSRT meeting, 7:30 am

January 14th & 15th

January 15th
Faculty meeting

January 16th
End of 2nd Advisory
Martin Luther King, Jr. Assembly

January 19th
Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday

January 20th
Inauguration Day Holiday

January 22nd
Student Council Awards Assembly

January 23rd
Record Keeping Day,
12:15 dismissal

January 30th
2nd Advisory report cards issued
Message from Principal Kim
Principal Kim
This week a group of students began to develop their leadership skills by attending a Student Leadership Conference on Friday and Saturday.  It is hard to describe in a few sentences how intense these sessions are.  During this time, the students begin to make deeper connections to each other and really get
to question their stance on their own humanity, empathy, and courage.  On Friday, we had about 60 students participate, and on Saturday, we had 16 students who completed their training.  Those students were:

Jewel Addison, Tyler Jackson, Toni Bethea, Sherma Ramakrishnan, Richard Randolph, Richard Escalante, Jonathan Hill, Sasha Rickard, Indigo Butler, Lena Shapiro, Lily Cortez, Mohamed Ahmed, Nnedimma Ugochukwu, Mackinley Byrd, Emma NoŽl, & Cara Kilgore.

This workshop was possible because of our very own faculty advisor, Mr. Ngwa, who stepped up to make sure we grow our student leadership focus.  Also, special thanks to Ms. Overby, who supported this workshop on both Friday and Saturday.  And all this would not have been possible without the skillful facilitation from Larry Bell.

We spend a lot of time on ways to improve our curriculum and raise the level of rigor in each class.  I am glad that we are also spending time to raise the bar on our expectations for how we value ourselves and others. 

This is especially exciting in light of the fact that we had our first 6th grade transition meeting on Friday.  Although we have been planning for the 6th grade transition for the last three years, we have invited a parent and teacher from each of the feeder schools to join us in planning the last steps of this transition.  The meeting was able to connect the parent/teacher communities of Deal, Lafayette, Eaton, Murch, Mann, Shepherd, and Janney with the shared purpose of making sure that we do our best to ensure a successful transition for the first 6th grade class at Deal next fall.  This group will be meeting regularly for the rest of the year.  I am so excited about our future! 

I will be hosting the first 6th grade coffee chats with future 6th grade parents this Wednesday at 9 am.  Please encourage current 5th grade parents to join me for an informal conversation.  Thanks to the Deal PTA for sponsoring this event.

Also, Deal Night is this Thursday at 6:30 pm.  Please invite all of your friends and neighbors who are interested in learning about Deal to join us!

Principal Kim

Shop at Politics & Prose
Go this weekend!

Support Alice Deal and its neighborhood bookstore this weekend!  Get a jump on your holiday shopping!

Principal Kim, 7th grade teachers, 8th grade teachers, and special subjects teachers have all created "wish lists" of books the school needs -- you can purchase those books and donate them to the school.  In addition, take this opportunity to purchase books, CDs, stationery, etc. for yourselves, friends and family.

The Book Fair will take place at Politics and Prose Bookstore (5015 Connecticut Avenue) on Saturday (November 8th), 9 am-10 pm, and Sunday (November 9th), 10 am-8 pm.  Politics & Prose will donate to Deal Middle School 20% of the purchase price for all sales to the Deal Community those days.

When you make your purchases, simply tell the cashier that you are at the bookstore to support Deal.  There will be Deal "coupons" located next to the registers which the cashier will staple to the store's receipt.   Questions?  Contact Susan Ullman at 966-8178 or [email protected]

Also at Politics & Prose on Saturday (10 am-2 pm), the Music Department will sell baked goods to raise money for their spring trip to Cleveland.


Weekly News

Teacher Reminders

  • The deadline for PTA newsletter submissions is this Friday.
  • Please enter student attendance each period.  It cannot wait until the end of the day.
  • Please post recent student work in your classrooms.

H.D. Cooke Buddy Day

  • Tuesday is a very special day! It is not only a national election, but 24 6th grade students from H.D. Cooke Elementary School will be at Deal for their Buddy Day. Please welcome our guests.


  • Students throughout the city took the second DC-BAS test last week.  Generally, Deal students approached this exam with focus, seriousness of purpose, and confidence.  You are encouraged to continue this can-do spirit with all things.  Your teachers, counselors, and administrators will be analyzing your results in the coming days and sharing them with you.  Your promptness and ability to follow directions closely were duly noted. Keep up the good work!

Johns Hopkins Talent Search Program

  • Parents -- applications/registration forms were given to all 7th and 8th grade students who qualified to participate in the Johns Hopkins Talent Search Program.  To qualify, students had to score "Advanced" in Reading or Math on last year's DC CAS test.  If you want your child to participate in the program, please follow the instructions in the Johns Hopkins pamphlet that was given to your child.  If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Santiago or Ms. McFarland.

Career Day Activities

  • We will have our Career Day activities on Thursday during periods 1 and 2.  Speakers will arrive at 8:15 am for a reception.  At 9 am, they will be escorted to the 1st period assigned homeroom.  Speakers will remain in the homeroom and present again during the 2nd period class.  We expect that our students will give a warm welcome to all our guest speakers and come ready to learn about different career opportunities!

2008 Shadow Elections at Deal

  • The Student Council will host its 2008 Shadow Presidential Election during Homeroom on Tuesday.  Make sure you let your voice be heard and vote.

Student Council

  • The Student Council officers will meet in Room 207 Monday after school.
  • Student Council representatives will meet in Room 207 Tuesday after school.

ELL Students Study the Constitution

  • On Wednesday, 28 ELL students will be taking the "We the People Constitution Trolley Tour."  They will have an opportunity to visit several famous landmarks in D.C. and learn about the three branches of government.  Finally, they will stop at the National Archives to view the original Constitution and Declaration of Independence.

Student Council Non-Perishable Food Drive

  • The Student Council begins its annual non-perishable food drive this week.  Please remember to bring non-perishable food items to your homeroom for collection.  We can all help make a difference in our community.  

November is Homeless Awareness Month

  • Our mission is to heighten the awareness of homeless issues.  Students recently participated in a mini-walk and engaged in discussion sessions regarding homeless concerns.  Hallways are displaying messages and posters that encourage assistance to the homeless.  Upcoming activities are planned, and we want to be supportive.  Remember the homeless!  

History Workshop at the National Archives

  • Students and parents are encouraged to participate in the one-hour workshops offered by the National Archives and Records Administration.  These sessions are designed to help students understand what materials are available at the Archives and how to use both on-line and  primary source documents for their National History Day projects.  Reservations are a must, however, so contact the District National History Day Coordinator, Missy McNatt, at [email protected] or at (202) 357-5121 to register.  Some sessions are already filled, so don't delay!
    Workshop Dates and times:
    Saturday, November 8:  9:00, 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 1:00
    Saturday, December 6:  9:00, 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 1:00
    Students must be accompanied by an adult with a photo ID.  

Team Leaders Meetings

  • The Team Leader's meeting for the next two weeks will be shifted to Wednesdays, instead of Tuesdays.  This week's Team Leaders Meeting has been rescheduled for Wednesday to allow time for voting.  Next week's meeting will also be on Wednesday because of the Veterans Day holiday.  Thanks for making the adjustments.

"New to Deal" Teachers Meeting

  • The "New to Deal" teachers meeting is scheduled for Thursday, 3:30, in Room N103.

Report Cards

  • First advisory report cards will be issued during PM Homeroom on Friday.  Students will return to homeroom at 3 pm.
 Boys' and Girls' Basketball Tryouts
  • Try-outs for the boys' and girls' basketball teams begin this week. The schedules are as follows:
    Boys - Monday and Wednesday from 3:30 to 5 pm
    Girls - Thursday and Friday from 3:30 to 5 pm.
    You must have a signed permission slip in order to try out.  See Coach Turner or Coach Jenkins for your permission slip.

Save The Date: Deal Parent Education Workshop

  • Deal's PTA is pleased to welcome back Dr. Neil Bernstein, a psychologist, author, and speaker. Dr. Bernstein will speak on "Keeping Your Middle Schoolers Out of Trouble," on Thursday, November 20, at 7 pm. He is a nationally recognized expert who has worked with youth and families for more than 25 years. His talk will focus on limit-setting, entitlement, what kids do under the radar (online experimenting and risk taking) and whether or not parents should spy on them. It promises to be an informative evening.  Mark your calendar!!
ZAP! News and Update
Lots of excitement in the ZAP room these days. As the end of the advisory approached, ZAP hit 25 students one day! Since the program is intended to give students a chance to make up late homework assignments, it is clear that both teachers and students were taking advantage of it when the advisory came to an end. Teachers who are ZAP-ing are doing a great job in providing lists of students and their assignments ahead of time -- keep it up. Remember, ZAP is not lunch detention, it is lunch recovery! There are always at least two Deal staff (sometimes more) working with students, answering questions, keeping them focused on the assignment, and helping them reflect on their work (and why they are in ZAP to begin with!). Keep sending students, and preferably when they start to fall behind, not at the very end of the advisory. We can be more effective that way in changing practice.
Because we have some students that self-ZAP (they just show up and do work as in a study hall) we have had to modify our lunch policy somewhat. To this point, all students in ZAP have been served lunch by ZAP staff who go and get their lunches from the cafeteria (if they need one). You can imagine what that looked like on the day of 24 students! To smooth the process, we are now getting lunches ONLY for those students who have a formal ZAP pass from their teacher. If a student chooses to self-ZAP -- which we *encourage* -- they need to get their lunch and bring it to ZAP. We will try and get them to the front of the line to speed the process. The reason we do lunch at all is that we encourage the students to focus for the whole 45 minutes and not be distracted by having to get their meal and talk to friends. Come by one day and see students eating, working, and studying - it warms the cockles of the heart!
IB MYP and Deal Teachers
Deal teachers have been working to align DCPS standards with IB standards and finished on Friday.  Next, we will move to articulate what kids must learn in 6th grade, 7th grade, and 8th grade.  All teachers need to know what other teachers in their departments are working on across the years, so that student work builds on past successes.  For the grade-by-grade articulation process, departments will look at their pacing guides and the MYP objectives and lay out the progression of learning for all to see.  This will be accompanied by development of the first IB MYP units of learning developed with the new MYP unit planner.  By the end of January, all teachers will have completed their first (this year) official IB MYP units!


Before & After School Activities This Week ...
Monday AM
  • Concert Band, 7:45 am
  •  Ms. Stanley's Reading Group, 7 - 8:30 am

Monday PM

  • Cross Country practice, 3:30 - 5 pm
  • Debate team, 3:20 - 4:30 pm
  • Cheerleading practice, 3:30 - 5 pm
  • Rugby, 3:30 - 5 pm
  • Girls' Soccer practice
  • Yoga, 3:30-4:30 pm, RM G3
  • Ms. Stanley's Reading Group, 3:30 - 4:30 pm
  • Volleyball Game, Deal vs Hardy, at Deal 5:30 pm
  • Student Council officers meeting,  3:20 - 4 pm, RM 207
  • Tutoring with Ms. Mason, 3:30 - 4:30 pm, RM 211
  • Science tutoring with Ms. Hampton, 3:30 - 4:30 pm
  • LAYC tutoring, 3:30 - 5:30 pm

Tuesday AM

  •  Jazz Combo, 7:45 am
  • Concert Choir, 7:45 am
  • Ms. Stanley's Reading Group, 7 - 8:30 am

Tuesday PM

  • Student Government meeting, 3:20 pm, RM 207
  • Human Rights Club meeting, 3:15 pm, RM N101
  • Volleyball practice, 3:30 -5 pm
  • Ms. Stanley's Reading Group, 3:30 - 4:30 pm
  • Drumline, 3:30-4:30 pm
  • International Cooking Club, 3:15-4:30 pm
  • Boys' Soccer Practice
  • Video Crew information meeting, 3:20 pm, Mr. Simmon's classroom
  • Art Club, 3:20 - 4:30 pm, Ms. Washington's classroom
  • LAYC tutoring, 3:30 - 5:30 pm

Wednesday AM

  • Concert Band, 7:45 am
  • Concert Choir, 7:45 am
  • Ms. Stanley's Reading Group, 7 - 8:30 am

Wednesday PM

  • Show Choir, 3:30 - 4:15 pm 
  • Girls' Soccer Practice
  • Fencing Club, 3:20 - 5 pm
  • Cross Country Practice, 3:30 - 5:00 pm
  • Volleyball, Deal vs Jefferson, 5:30 pm at Deal
  • LAYC tutoring, 3:30 - 5:30 pm

Thursday AM

  • Jazz Band, 7:45 am
  • Concert Choir, 7:45 am
  • Ms. Stanley's Reading Group, 7 - 8:30 am

Thursday PM

  • Fencing Club, 3:20 - 5 pm, RM 215
  • Rugby, 3:30 - 5 pm
  • Ms. Stanley's Reading Group, 3:30 - 4:30 pm
  • Boys' Soccer Practice
  • Cross Country Practice, 3:30 - 5:00 pm
  • LAYC tutoring, 3:30 - 5:30 pm

Friday AM

  • Rock Choir, 7:45 am 

Friday PM

  • Boys' Soccer Game, 4 pm, Deal VS Friendship Edison 
  • Field Games with Mr. Brecher
  • Cross Country Practice, 3:30 - 5:00 pm
As always, students should only be at school with parent permission!
Food for thought...

The Basics of Differentiated Instruction

            In this Edutopia column, Ellen Moir, director of the New Teacher Center at the University of California/Santa Cruz, responds to a teacher's question about how to meet the needs of her multi-level group of fifth graders. "I find myself teaching to the middle and having a difficult time engaging the lower- and higher-level students," says the teacher. Muir suggests the following:

           Find out a lot about your students. Use good assessments, surveys, and queries to students' parents and former teachers to get insights into kids' academic and language levels, learning styles, interests, likes and dislikes, and home situations. It's vital to have as much information as possible to differentiate instruction.

           Differentiate what you teach. Assign topics and projects based on students' interests and proclivities so as to increase engagement while covering essential curriculum content.

           Differentiate how you teach. Scaffold the depth and complexity of lessons so that students can understand and apply knowledge in ways that make sense to them. For example, some students may do better discussing or debating a book; others may learn best doing PowerPoint presentations for classmates; and others may learn best manipulating objects or piecing things together.

           Differentiate how students demonstrate mastery. Give students options in how you check on whether students have absorbed what's been taught. "Oral and written tests are not the only means for assessing student learning," says Moir. You might use portfolios, rubrics, journals, reports, essays, projects, and other assignments and grading systems."

           Differentiate the learning environment. "How you arrange your classroom - whether the desks are in rows or groups or learning centers - sets the tone for both teaching and learning," says Moir.


"Individualize Your Instruction" by Ellen Moir in Edutopia, October/November 2008 (Vol. 4, #5, p. 14); no free e-link; to submit a question to Muir, go to .

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Alice Deal Middle School | 3815 Fort Drive, NW | Washington | DC | 20016