“Good morning!" Ms. Fredenburg cheerfully greets her students. "Let’s make three straight lines. You look good,” “Thank you!” they shout back. “You look ready to learn today!” “Thank you!” “You are in dress code" "Thank you!" "You are fabulous students” "Thank you!" “OK, get started.” The students begin to march into the room. “Eyes should be on the Do Now Board.” On the white board are the words: DO NOW, Copy Agenda, Begin Reading. “I’m starting in three minutes, with or without you.” She walks around and after redirecting a couple of slow students, she declares, “95% of you are on board, 5% are still finishing agendas.” She randomly picks out a student to read the homework on the board. I sit in her class taking notes and am amazed how she has managed to get her entire class on task, focused, and productive, before the announcements have even begun! Next, I see her approaching students with a pad of Post-Its and conferring with students about their independent reading!
Nicole Fredenburg has super teacher powers. I am not exaggerating. If you want to be inspired by how firm and consistent a teacher can be, while always maintaining a kind and caring demeanor, I highly recommend spending a few minutes in her classroom. Not a single second of instructional time is wasted by students who are off task. I asked her how she does it and she explained. She spends the first week of school rehearsing her routines with her new students. She balances the strict management of routines and on-pointe instruction with positive reinforcement. And she makes sure that the students understand that it is all done for their own good, out of concern for their future.
Nicole Fredenburg is a 17-year veteran Los Alisos teacher and was honored to be elected Teacher of the Year in 2008. She is also proud to be the sponsor of the LAMS Running Club, which currently meets on Tuesdays after school.
She is loved and admired by her students. I asked them, “What do you like most about Ms. Fredenburg?” Their responses were all similar. “How strict she is and how much she cares to help us succeed.” “…she pushes us to the limit for us to succeed.” “…she wants us to do well in life.” “…she believes we can achieve anything. She’s funny too.” “I like that she can be fun.” “I love the way she teaches and I’m so lucky to have her as a teacher.”
We, the Los Alisos family are so lucky to have her on our staff, to model exemplary classroom management and instruction for other teachers, like myself, who need to hone our skills, and to inspire and form our students’ character and prepare them for the future. Thank you, Ms. Fredenburg!
Discipline Committee Explores New Schoolwide Policies
Welcome back to school and to some new schoolwide strategies designed to improve student behavior and create a positive, respectful environment for all. Thanks to Mr. Ron Carroll for heading this committee and to all the members who will be volunteering their time to make Los Alisos even better than ever. Our first meeting was on Monday, Sept. 18. We are developing the new LAMS Discipline Procedure Flowchart, in an attempt to define and delineate the responsibilities of teachers/ administrative staff and define the consequences for behavior, as well as standardizing discipline procedures. We also discussed strategies that work in the classroom to reduce office referrals and still hold students accountable.
Los Alisos Mentor-a-Student Coalition
Who: All Teachers and Staff at Los Alisos Middle School
What: Choose 2 students who you connect with, know need help based on data or behavioral referral, and can support in and outside of school.
When: Choose your students by September 30th and notify Ms. Mayes of your choices.