Computer screen with annotated digital text

A teacher’s digital text with prepared annotations for an upcoming reading mini-lesson

Hello MPES families,

Almost every day as I help walk the kindergarten and 1st grade students from lunch to recess, at least one student will ask me if they need to wear a jacket. The rule is, if it is 60 degrees or higher, no jacket is required.

For me, it’s not just whether or not I should wear a jacket when I go outside, but which jacket. I have a fall/spring windbreaker when it’s mild, a flannel jacket for cooler weather, and a down winter coat for frigid temps. And in Wisconsin, there are some instances where I might want all three depending on the time of day!

It’s good to be prepared, and even build in redundancies. This also applies to how we try to approach each situation with students: to always have options. For example, with our new literacy curriculum we now have a common resource for teaching readers and writers. Yet teachers still have space to respond to their students’ needs on a personalized basis.

If you’d like to learn more about our new literacy curriculum, see below. You can also reach out to me for a time to talk or meet.

Take care,

Matt Renwick, Principal

Mineral Point Elementary School

Volunteer for Book Fair

We are once again hosting a book fair this fall, November 14-18. You will be able to shop for books during fall family conferences on the 16th.

If you are willing and able, we are looking for volunteers to help manage the book fair. Click on the link below to sign up.

Book Fair Sign Up

(Special thanks to Amanda Tupper, Christy Cole and the rest of the Family Educational Partnership team for helping set up this event.)

Fall Family Conferences

We are hosting our annual fall family conferences on November 16 from 2:30 – 7:30 P.M.

Your child(ren)’s teacher(s) will be sending out an invitation link to sign up for a time to meet. You will have the option of meeting in person or through Zoom. Between now and then, please think about what questions you have, if any, for the teacher.

Here are a few examples for your consideration:

  1. What strengths are you seeing so far with my child?
  2. How is she/he doing regarding relationships with peers?
  3. What area for growth do you see for her/him, and how can we support their learning?

New Literacy Curriculum Resource: Benchmark Advance

Last spring, our school was approved to implement the Benchmark Advance literacy curriculum program in the elementary school.

This decision was made after reviewing several literacy resources. Overall, we felt Benchmark best met our students’ needs for a variety of reasons:

  • The text is more complex which raises expectations for students.
  • Reading and writing are integrated within the curriculum.
  • We will have a consistent foundational reading skills scope and sequence.
  • Projects, personal goal setting, and other student-centered tasks are incorporated.
  • Students still have time to select books of their choice and to read independently.

To learn more, you can explore what Benchmark provides on their website: 



This is Matt’s 23rd year serving in public education. He started as a 5th and 6th grade teacher as well as an assistant principal, athletic director, and building principal all in Wisconsin Rapids. As an elementary principal with the Mineral Point Unified School District, he enjoys working with students, staff, and families in a collective pursuit of continuous learning. In his spare time, he reads, writes, gardens, and travels to connect with family and friends.