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How does the new schedule benefit my child? How is the new schedule related to IB?

When teachers have time to plan together and be supported by the IB coordinator, it benefits all children. Instead of having teachers work in isolation, they get to share their best resources and ideas with their grade level teams. Now, one time a week, teachers have forty minutes to work with Sacha (the IB coordinator). During this time, teachers reflect on their units, gather resources for new units and share ideas.

For example, at this week’s kindergarten meeting the teachers shared ideas on how to engage students with their unit on Work and Play. One teacher shared about how she used puppets to have students role play and act out the different concepts students were learning about why we have rules. The other teachers had time to see the puppets, hear how they were used to engage all learners in academic work and find ways of incorporating it into their unit. By having structured time to share, all of our schedules have richer, more varied learning experiences.

I thought the school day ended earlier so teachers could have planning time. Is this something different?

YES! The school time change was so teachers could have their required 40 minutes of personal planning time. The IB collaboration time is group planning time that is facilitated by an IB coordinator. This does not count as personal planning time for the district.

Does my child have less academic time now?

No! How it works is that during one forty minute block one class might have Spanish, while another class has technology and a third class has Art. The students are going to specials just like they did before, but the timing has shifted so all of the teachers at a grade level have the special all at one time. During this time, the coordinator is also available. It is a scheduling challenge, but benefits all of our students without having them loose precious academic time!

How can I help IB at Sabin?

I've started meeting bi-weekly with a parent-led IB support team. Amie Wexler ( and Helen Kilber ( are co-leads for this initiative but will be reaching out to recruit more interested parents. Our goal is to better leverage our Sabin and greater Portland community resources to support IB units.

Since I will be meeting weekly with all grade levels, I'll be able to communicate clearly about what IB units are coming up and where teachers would like help enriching them with community resources For instance, a trip to the Oregon Historical Society or having a parent come in to talk about bee-keeping. Please contact Amie or Helen if you would be interested in helping! Right now, we are looking for parents to come in and help with our flexible math groupings in Grades 4 and 5. Having more parents in the room to supervise allows us to work more closely with individual students. If you are interested in helping for an hour a week or more, please email Amie ( or Helen (

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