White Pine Charter School  Newsletter
Cougars are Willing, Positive, Connected, and Significant

Success for Every Student 


February 2019                                                                              Vol. 11
Parent Connection

Core Knowledge at Home

One of the basic premises of the Core Knowledge curriculum is having knowledge enables students to gain more knowledge. As we often hear at WPCS, "Knowledge builds on knowledge." We know from research and experience that the more a child knows, the more he or she is able to learn.  If a child knows about the solar system, for example, reading words like "planets" and "stars" will be fairly easy. Even words like "constellations" and "astronomy" can be read by beginning readers if they have some background knowledge about the subject.  This often lends to "struggling" readers being able to fly through passages that are related to these topics, even when they contain words that are difficult to decode. This builds confidence, which in turn allows them to learn even more. Building background knowledge is one of the most important things we, as parents and teachers, can do to help children become proficient readers.  

At school, we often see our lower elementary classrooms participating in "read-alouds" with the children. However, as the students get older, and become more proficient readers themselves, this activity begins to fall by the wayside. According to E.D. Hirsch, Jr. (the President and Founder of the Core Knowledge Foundation), students need adults to read to them even through middle school years.  If a student relies entirely on his or her reading skills to gain knowledge, progress will be delayed. Research shows that a child's listening comprehension in second grade correlates with reading comprehension in fifth grade. Therefore, reading to your child will make a big impact on his or her ability to read independently both now and in the future. Hearing an adult read, exposes children to a variety of new skills and will enhance not only their reading skills but also their ability to learn.

What can parents do to help their children be successful in school? Reading together is a great start, but this isn't the only way to help them succeed.  Talk to your child's teacher about upcoming topics in Science, Social Studies, and Language Arts. Right now at White Pine our third graders are beginning a unit on Astronomy, while the Second grade has been learning about Westward Expansion.  Our Fifth graders are expanding their knowledge about the Reformation. A simple Google search will help you find articles, stories, and videos about these topics.  Watch videos about upcoming units with your children. Talk about them together. Find books that are related to the things your children are learning in school.  Look at pictures together and talk about what they are learning. Having conversations with your children will increase their vocabulary and background knowledge about the topics they are learning. The Core Knowledge curriculum is spiral based and builds on topics throughout the succession of grades, which can create conversations between children about how their topics are interrelated. Your children will become better readers by learning more words (vocabulary) and gaining background knowledge.  And, more importantly, when you ask, "What did you learn today?" you might get a better answer than, "I don't know."

Connie Day

What's Happening?


Mathcounts is a national middle school math competition where students compete against other schools as both a team and an individual.  This was the second consecutive year White Pine has attended the regional competition, with twelve middle school students competing.  The regional tournament was held on February 9th, in Pocatello on the ISU campus.  Students spent the entire day working on a series of math assessments.  In total, our region had 160 competitors, with two of our students placing in the top 15.  Justin Fowler, 5th place, and Austin Olsen, 13th place, will advance to the state competition on March 9th in Boise. A big thank you goes out to Ms. Croft for her efforts in making this happen! Good luck at the state competition!

Message from our PFA

On Febryuary 10th we hosted Family Movie Night and watched Incredibles 2.

The Read-A-Thon started on February 20th and is still going strong! It is a fundraiser to help raise money for a new portable stage.

Our volunteer of the month is the amazing Connie Goodwin!

The next PFA meeting is Wednesday, March 6th at 6:30 in the media center. Be sure to join us and make your voice heard. 

Spirit/Popcorn Friday is March 1st. 

The Family Night this month is  March 28th at McKenzie River Pizza. Come out and support the school while enjoying a delicious dinner where you do not have to cook or clean up!

Remember your goal is 20 volunteer hours a year and there are plenty of opportunities to help in the classrooms, after school, at home, or with the PFA.  If you are unsure where your time could be donated, or what you can do please do not hesitate to contact either your child's teacher or the PFA. 

Positive Behavior Supports and Interventions

PBIS Team Presents in Boise

The White Pine Charter School PBIS team presented in Boise on Friday, February 8th at the Idaho Positive Behavior Network Conference. The "Ignite Session" allowed the team to share the school's story by talking about barriers to implementation and current successes. Other schools around the area attended the session and asked questions in hopes of learning from experience.

This outstanding team has helped spark effective change at White Pine. Some of the changes have been developing the P.A.W.S. program and organizing school wide assemblies to promote positive behavior for all students. 

The mission of the White Pine Charter School PBIS team is to create and maintain an effective learning environment by establishing behavioral supports and the social culture needed for all students in our school to achieve social, emotional, and academic success.

Do you want to know more about PBIS? Feel free to contact the team at any time. Members of the team include Gayle Black, Anna Attebury, Kari Peterson, Alaysha Whitworth, Jen Croft, and Ken Graham. 


Capturing Cougars in Action




Monthly Events

March 1st - End of 2nd Trimester

March 1st -  Spirit Friday

March 2nd - Barnes and Noble Book Fair

March 4th - No School - Teacher Work Day

March 5th - Boys Basketball Playoffs

March 6th - PFA Meeting 6:30 PM

March 9th - Boys Basketball Finals

March 14th - Author Assembly - Wendy S. Swore

March 15th - St. Patrick's Day Celebration

March 18th-22nd - Spring Break

March 27th - Wendy's STEM Night

March 28th - Spring Pictures

March 28th - McKenzie River Family Night

Our funding is 
based on student attendance 

When you make appointments that could take your child away from school, please schedule them for after 1 p.m. We lose funding if students leave before this time of day. Also, please plan vacations when school is out of session. We want to secure as much funding as possible to invest in your children!

Office Info 

Please check in at the front office before heading to a classroom. F or the safety of your children, a ll adults must have a visitor badge. When bringing your students in late, please make sure to sign them in before taking them to class. Otherwise, they may be marked absent. 

Dress Code Reminder

Please make sure your child is coming to school in dress code. Our policies and resources are listed on the school website. We are more than happy to answer any questions you may have. 

Pre-Registration Forms

Pre-Registration forms have been sent home. They are blue and double sided. In order to plan for the upcoming school year, we ask that guardians fill out the form with their intentions for 2019-2020. We are excited to start our new high school this fall. The White Pine STEM Academy will be accepting 9th graders. Make sure to reserve your spot and return forms by March 09, 2019.