Pioneer School

618 N. Sullivan Rd., Spokane Valley, WA 99037 (509) 922-7818

Staff Profiles
Student Resources

Welcome to Judy Wold's Classroom

Classroom Promise

We believe in the unique strengths, talents and gifts that each of us bring along on our journey of learning together. We come to Pioneer School to listen, wonder, imagine, explore, create, experiment and grow. We agree that no one person has the right to steal the education of another. We aim to treat others as we wish to be treated. We know that success means doing and being our best every day. We start each day with our greatest self open to love and life!

Management Philosophy

The key to a well-managed classroom is a well-planned, developmentally appropriate, engaging and challenging curriculum. I aim to facilitate optimal learning by responding to the needs of individual students and the classroom as a whole. Children deserve a measure of freedom and choice in their education with guidelines. Together we are building a caring, structured and inviting atmosphere in which children feel supported in taking risks. I am not only trying to model an enthusiasm for learning, but also the characteristics of perseverance, cooperation, humility, respect and graciousness. I recognize and rejoice in the best effort of each child and encourage them to continue reaching for their greatest self.

Student Responsibility

The student must take responsibility for his or her own decisions and the consequences these choices elicit. When students make counterproductive choices, they need to receive consistent consequences that help them understand their actions, develop new skills, and make more productive choices. Most often a poor choice is recognized and redirected without a problem. If one continues to indulge in their bad choice, the individual will be sent to time out. In time out, one must acknowledge their behavior, explain why they were engaging in it, and devise a solution. Developing a sense of self-discipline is the goal.

If a child has more than five breaches of the classroom principles within a week’s time, parents will be notified. Depending on the severity and underlying causes of the behaviors, parents and the teacher will decide how to alter any external forces that may be contributing to the poor choice of behavior. Once these have been taken into consideration, a specific plan with input from the student on how to change the behavior will be drawn up. Incentives will be provided for improved behavior, and the student, parents, and teacher will commit to the plan.


  1. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.
  2. One person talks at a time.
  3. Keep your hands to yourself.
  4. Walk.
  5. Work quietly.
  6. Be Your BEST!


Entry Task

School starts at 8:30am. I expect students to be punctual, and begin working right away. The entry task will be an individual activity that relates to something we will explore in more depth later that day in math, language and/or the topic study. This time will also be used to finish up anything that was left over from yesterday. This time of morning sets the scholarly tone for the day. Your finished entry task is your ticket to recess.


Opening will be a series of small chores that children complete as they arrive. These include putting your things away, turning in work, and tending to individually assigned duties. Opening will include calendar time. Each week, a new Calendar Keeper will be assigned the job of keeping us up to date. The Calendar Keeper also teaches us "Good Morning" in a new language, give a weather report, total up our daily deposit in compounding interest, and make announcements.


The adopted math curriculum, Everyday Mathematics, is a comprehensive curriculum that follows the National council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) standards. This curriculum encourages children to solve problems, think about their numbers in divergent ways and share their thought process through speaking, demonstration and writing. Everyday math balances understanding concepts with mastering algorithms and basic facts. Major concepts are revisited frequently as a child progresses from kindergarten to sixth grade. We will work on varied lessons in Everyday Math workbooks as well as math journals that address topic math, ongoing math labs and challenges.

In addition, calendar time involves practicing skills such as patterning and sequence, number lines, multiples, time, money, measurement, and mental math.

On alternate days during the week we reinforce basic facts with timed tests or practice makes better. Student’s race against themselves and move to the next problem set during one-minute fact tests on Mondays and Wednesdays. On Tuesdays and Thursdays the whole class works to earn as many flashcards as they can as a group in 5 minutes. If they improve their score every day for five rounds in a row, they earn a popcorn party. If they "break the bank" (go through a whole deck of cards), they earn an ice cream cone from the principal! As you can imagine, practice makes better is a HUGE hit!

Language Arts

Specific lessons and activities in literacy are supplemented by reading, writing, and speaking in all other areas of the school day. However, the following components are the backbone of our language arts program:

  1. Writer's Workshop - a mini lesson in any writing form (expository, narrative, correspondence, procedural, poetry, journalistic, etc.) followed by time for authors to develop their ideas and write! Quality, finished pieces of writing are the emphasis here and students will utilize the writing process to achieve their best work. There is always time set aside at the end of workshop for authors to read their finished, polished pieces aloud to their peers and receive compliments, questions and feedback.
  2. Reader's Workshop - I demonstrate reading comprehension strategies in mini-lessons and shared activities during short, whole-group lessons. Readers then have an opportunity to try the strategies as part of their reading process in a book at their level. Children may be reading individually or in small groups during this time. These strategies include making connections, asking questions, comparing, inferring, predicting, making mental images and synthesizing new information and ideas into our lives. Readers follow up by creating responses that help them make meaning from their reading.
  3. Journal Writing - a time to ponder ideas and free write on many topics.
  4. DEAR - drop everything and read! Students choose their own books or magazines and record their responses in a reading journal.
  5. McCracken Spelling and Phonics - small group instruction in the alphabetic code.
  6. Literature Circles - book clubs for kids. Allows children to orally share and derive meaning from quality literature in small groups. Students also make group response projects that reflect their learning.
  7. SRI (scholastic reading inventory) and QRI (qualitative reading inventory) - quarterly administered reading assessment that guide instruction in fluency and comprehension. These tools also measure reading growth.
  8. 100 Book Club - for those students who have read 100 appropriately leveled books.


Topics are just one of the beauties that make Pioneer an amazing school to get a real education at! The topic is what brings our learning to life and gives experiences their authenticity! The topic is the vehicle that takes us to other times, places, and peoples. I try to connect all that is taught to the current topic. Research proves that this connectedness builds bridges in our brains and improves retention.



The purpose of homework in grades K-4 is to provide practice, personal interest, enrichment, and a developing sense of responsibility. The only homework that is useful is that which enhances the child's learning in school.


Younger elementary student homework should concentrate on reading, spelling, math, and occasionally science. I will express that this homework is the student's responsibility, and if they are confused, they can ask an adult for help. However, this is the student's homework, nobody else's. I will accept late homework within a week of its assignment. Students can turn in their finished homework with their homework folders on Fridays. I will keep a log of homework turned in by each student. A student will receive feedback on their homework that will encourage their efforts and help them improve those areas which could benefit from some extra care. This can come from the teacher, parents, self, or peers. Homework will be graded in the sense that it will contribute to the overall picture of the child's growth in these content areas, responsibility, and neatness.


Weekday Workouts (by the week) should be completed. If you need more space for a problem, do the work on another sheet of paper. There will also be a math packet consisting of practice individualized for each child. In addition to Weekday Workouts and the math packet, I will send home unfinished or incorrect work to be returned ASAP.


Pioneer uses McCracken phonics to teach regular spelling, and we give formal tests to teach sight words (those that do not follow any spelling rules). Detailed spelling contracts for a week's worth of homework are sent out on Monday (or Friday if you need it earlier) and are to be turned in on Friday in the homework folder. Tests are on Fridays unless we go on an all-day field trip, in which case it will be on Thursday.


Please surround your child with quality literature and foster a love of reading by making frequent trips to the library and reading together. Third grade is not too old to be read aloud to! Also, let your child see you enjoying reading in many forms. We are asking students to join the 100 Book Club by documenting each book they read. Your child needs to be reading at least 20 minutes each night at home to make reading progress. Please see the attached information regarding tracking at home reading.


Sharing will be a required, rotating homework assignment. Wednesday afternoons, we will receive a 3-5 minute, prepared presentation from one or two of our classmates on topic-related books, artifacts, pictures, writings, or collections. After each child has presented, there will be a two-minute question and answer session. The other options for "SHARE" are photos, items, and souvenirs from an interesting trip or a student-authored and illustrated book or other writing form. The more audio-visuals to spice up the presentation, the better. Have your child run through their presentation with you. See the attached SHARE schedule.

Research Symposium Presentations

Once per topic, children will choose a mini-theme within the study topic to become an expert on. It will be their job to glean information on their subject of personal interest from books, the library, internet, scientists, historians, media, and observation. In addition to researching their mini-theme, they will compose an interpretive presentation to teach, inform, and delight their peers with at the end-of-topic symposium. Specifics about the symposium and mini-themes for each topic will arrive via letter as we begin each research project in school.

Other Bits and Pieces


Snacks will be brought in by students. These will need to conform to "brain-friendly" food standards. For example - healthy proteins, fresh fruit or veggies, or whole grain snacks are proven to improve attention, attitude and learning. These foods will also be talked about in class. Parents are welcome to provide healthy snacks for the entire class.


Cool Spokane Aquifer tap water will be provided in the classroom. Your child needs to bring a water bottle with his/her name on it to drink from and refill. A wet brain is a fast brain!


Listening will be expected when we are sharing ideas in class, groups, or partners. We will know you are listening when you are facing the speaker, have your hands to yourself, and your mouth closed.


Birthdays will be celebrated by sharing treats passed out by the birthday person if their family is interested in holding a celebration with their class. I encourage birthdays at school because it helps us build community. Just run the date of the party by me in advance so I can make arrangements.


I hope that you all have an opportunity to come join our class in some capacity. I am always welcoming of any help, and it is very beneficial to students to have more supportive adults nearby. If you have a special skill or talent that would be a gift to Pioneer in any way, we encourage you to share it!


I am usually at the school any hour normal people would be awake, and you can contact me there in person or via telephone. Please recognize that the time before 8:20 is precious to me as a teacher and to your child's education. If you see the need to discuss issues that arise during the school year in detail, please schedule a mini-conference with me. Daily student work will be coming home as it is corrected and recorded. Please check your child's mailbox when you come into the room, even though it is their responsibility to take the mail out and get it to a parent. Betty and I will be sending letters and forms home via the mailboxes.


Pioneer School Phone: (509) 922-7818

Home Phone: (509) 624-5249

E-mail Address:

Thank you for your ongoing support of expeditionary education at Pioneer School and our awesome students!

Nicole's Vision for Her Students

My vision is to send each child I teach down the path of lifelong learning. I aim to inspire a child's greatest self to pursue his or her passion. My hope is that each child I teach encounters themselves as a result of their encounter with ideas.

Nicole A. Bronson
Second/Third Grade Teacher
Pioneer School