Sunday, February 26, 2017

March Already??? Crazy!!

As we make our way into March. . .yes, March, hard to believe. . .The spring cleaning continues at my house!  Gearing up for another small garage sale here in March.  Fairchild and I did some spring cleaning in the computer lab last week and this week we all are going to start thinking about some of those spring chores a bit early. . .inventories and team closets!  Some of you may not have gone up and really looked to see what we might need to organize as far as upstairs team closets.  Remember that last year, we worked on purging and combining grade levels together in order to open up the learning spaces upstairs.  So, now I would like you to start thinking about how those look, if you might purge more or how they can best be used for your teams!

Week of:  Feb. 27th-March 3rd, 2017

Monday- IBM Feedback - Team Leaders (AM)
Turn in TELPAS Samples to Brett 

Tuesday - Angie Out (AM) Principal Meeting

Wednesday - Jeans Day (any shirt)
Faculty Meeting - Library - 3:15 (STAAR Training)

Thursday -  PTO Meeting - 8:15 - Kristan's Room
5th Grade Argument Driven Inquiry Training

Friday -  Jeans Day
Texan Town

Important Reminders
Inventories and Organizing Closets

Team leaders - Get together with your team to make sure you have updated inventory lists for all areas of the school.  This includes adding any new resources/materials purchased this year.   If you would make sure your inventory is updated and in a Google Doc/Google Spreadsheet so it can be shared with me at the end of the year.   Begin working on organizing your team closets. (you may want to work with your vertical grade level K-5 in order to make sure everything being stored is necessary as well as easily accessible)  

From the Desk of BS….volume 23
NBA Trading Deadline 

This week marked the point in the NBA season where teams were able to make their final trades and adjustments to their rosters for the final playoff push. For some teams, this may mean releasing a player in hopes of finding another, or a future player, that may be a better fit for their system. What a luxury professional coaches and owners must feel like they have, if the player doesn’t fit, let’s find one that will. If I see someone out there that I want to put in my system, let’s see how much money we can offer them to get them here.

The great coaches and franchises can take any player and fit them in their system. Some of the most successful teams, from year to year, are able to build off of the strengths of current players and find a way to make it work. With the coming and passing of the deadline, one team you will notice did not make headlines, the San Antonio Spurs. For the past 15 years they have been one of the most competitive and successful franchises in the NBA, and for the most part, they have used the talents from the players that they have, the great coach that leads them, and make a run at a championship year in and year out. 

In education, we aren’t able to make trades, but we are able to build off of our strengths within our classroom. You are the head coach of the team and you are able to take your players strengths, build off of them, and help them be successful. Below you will find a few links that can be a good reference when looking at your team, making relationships and differentiating for learning styles that fit your players: 

Thank you for being all that and a bag of chips, 


Shout Outs!
Shout out to Courtney Rice! Thank you so much for all you have done in helping to facilitate our garden training this year with Real School Gardens. I appreciate the time you have taken in getting everyone scheduled and for taking the lead on this real world learning for kids!

Brett (AKA "The 504 King"), I can't even begin to list all the ways you are AMAZING in our COUNTLESS 504s! I don't have to be annoying Type A self (although you may disagree-ha) because you are so incredible with it ALL! I don't know what I would do without you this year--THANK YOU! –Mary

Laura - Thank you for helping me weed through the lovely stacks in the computer lab in order to help clean up and get more books for our literacy library!

Kristan - Thank you for helping to get our books sorted and ready to be added to our collections in the literacy library!  Appreciate your dedication to organization!  - Angie

Lisa, Thank you SO much for helping me plan one of my lessons and sharing your ideas! You went out of your way to be so helpful! –Kylen

Casey Wagner, Thank you for teaming up with me to help motivate one of our learners! –Kylen

Renee, Thank you for bringing your Jr. iTeam to help our classes put our digital stories on their google sites. Your team rocked!!! They were so well behaved and patient with the little ones! Julie

Kristan, thank you so much for coming in and modeling clocking and class management for me. You always go above and beyond! ~Rachel

Candace, thank you for always embracing my ideas and making them into a reality for our learners! ~Rachel

Kelly, I loved getting to hear the discussion you had with my class when you came to read The Hundred Dresses this week! I love having you in my room. :) –Marly

Shout out to the first grade teachers for stealing the show on Tuesday! Y'all rocked!

Kylen, I love how sharing kids with you! The conversations we've been having about our boys are so helpful, and the kids really adore you. –Marly

Beth, I love the way you saw an interest in one of my learners, invited him to join your club, and then came to our room on Friday to help with that transition. Our kids are so lucky to have you. Marly

Becky,  Thank you so much for all of your hard work with the 1st grade program!  Those 1st graders were groovy with their garden songs and it was truly an enjoyable performance!  Thank you for going above and beyond and making our kiddos, educators and families smile!  - Angie

Wags, Thank you for showing our new friend around during Texan Town on Friday and for helping him make a new friend in the 5th grade! :) Marly

Candace- Thank you for being a great thought partner and for helping with the 1st grade screen casting projects! ~Leigh Ann

Rachel Lim you are wise beyond your years! I love seeing your patience with your diverse learners. Kristan

Morgan Great work with persuasive writing and conferencing with your learners!. Kristan

Katie Tonemah- I love seeing your passion for your learners. Kristan

1st Grade Teachers - Thank you so much for assigning and working with your learners on their speaking parts for "How Does Your Garden Groove"! You're the best! – Becky

What about those 1st grade teachers? Their acting careers must have been cut short so they could dedicate their lives to teaching! In my book you are each an academy award winner! Thank you for being willing to take on a role in the first grade program. I love each one of you.

Beth - You are brilliantly talented! I love working with you! Thank you for the set design for "How Does Your Garden Grow". And, thank you for the adorable t-shirts you make for our potatoes! Love you – Becky

Ashley Martin asked her neighbor to watch her boys so she could come to the 1st grade program and run sound (her husband was out of town). She knows how important it is to me to have someone who has been a part of each rehearsal running the sound. Ashley, you know what it means to be a team player! I love you – Becky

March Birthdays
Becky Garrett - 7th
Kelly Burks - 8th
Sherri Kingsley - 16th
Beth Parker - 17th
Meredith Schaaf - 20th
Megan McGraw - 26th
Jessica Cavet - 27th
Lorri Brehm - 30th

Final Quotes for the Week
As we are hustling on through into spring, don't forget about the importance of having those moments to take deep breaths and taking time for yourself!  Remind your kiddos of the importance of breathing as well. . .a few deep breaths can help with anxiety, anger, stress, etc.  

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Four Day Week. . .Kind Of!

I hope you all have been enjoying this wonderful weather this weekend. . .it made me feel like spring cleaning and working in the yard, which is always good for the soul. . .I am looking forward to our professional learning tomorrow to see where our next steps in curriculum development go as well as the four day week (kind of) :)  

Week of:  February 20th-24th, 2017

Monday- Professional Learning Day - Wear Jeans and Nice Shirt

Tuesday - Author Visit - Library K-1 (8:30-9:15) 4-5 (9:30-10:15) 2-3 (1:00-1:45)

DEIC Meeting - Admin 4:30pm

Wednesday - Jeans and TCE Shirt or College Shirt
Project Adam Training - Library - All TCE Staff - 3:15
Angie Out (AM) Training
Brett Out (PM) Training

Thursday -  Texan Town Schedule due to 1st Grade Program - 8:30am and 6:00pm - Cafeteria

Friday -  Jeans/Sweats (since Jump Rope for Heart)
Texan Town
Jump Rope for Heart - All Day - Gym
Kelly Out (STAAR Training)

Important Reminders

Feb. 20th- Professional Learning
Make sure and check out the schedule I sent out in an email with where you need to go to for this day! 

Random Acts of Kindness
We are having an extension on Random Acts of Kindness week, so our learners can keep on understanding the importance of compliments, kind words, positive attitude/complain less, etc.  

Project Adam Training
We are going to be having Project Adam Training led by our very own Sue Kane on Wednesday.  This is a district training that all staff members must go through, so everyone please make arrangements to attend.  (educators, office staff, paraprofessionals, specialists, etc.)
From the Desk of BS….volume 22

Finding Talent 
This weekend marks the point in the NBA season that the best talent comes together to celebrate the All-Stars. First and foremost, I am not a fan of the NBA. I played basketball in high school, but that was the time between football and baseball (I’m counting down the days that MLB spring training is over and the Rangers start their quest to defend their AL West title). In the meantime, there is a part of All-Starr weekend in the NBA that fascinates me, the 3-point and Slam-Dunk contest. What’s odd about these competitors is that they are able to highlight a unique talent they have in a single competition.
It is a weekend filled with the celebration of the greatest all around players in the NBA, highlighted by the All-Star game on Sunday, but the celebrations of talent in the Slam Dunk Contest and the 3-point Shootout on Saturday can be seen as differentiating. I know it’s a stretch, but if you look at the history of winners of both contests, you will see that they excel at that particular skill. Differentiating instruction in your classroom can be difficult, but it is imperative to the success of your learners. We do a great job of providing activities that highlight the talents of our classes. 

Please see the links below for some ideas about differentiation: 

Forever grateful to work with the best, 

Shout Outs!
4th grade, Ya'll are pretty much the most flexible people on the planet! THANK YOU for always making the magic happen with MLI kiddos with the crazy schedule AND for always letting me "peek" at the data! You all rock my world! Love, Mary :)

Julie, Wow! You blow me away with your dedication and initiative in combing through the data and looking for the "real story." I appreciate your tenacity and willingness to collaborate! You "get it." Love you! -Mary :)

Leigh Ann, There are too many ways to list how you amazing you are! You are EVERYWHERE, help with ANYTHING, and know EVERYTHING! We appreciate ALL you do! Love, Mary ;)

Kelly Spears, Thank you SO much for taking time to work with my group of girls! You have dedicated so much of your time, and I seriously appreciate you everything that you do! –Meredith

Katy McKinney- Thank you so much for creating "Love is..." Valentine video for our parents. It was so cute! You are so thoughtful to take the time to create this video for each one of our classes. You are the best! Lorri, Lauren, Kim

Catherine Kim - It was great joining your learners as they used the writing process to explain geometric shapes.

Lauren - Your calm voice and patient nature makes your classroom environment ideal.

Kelly - Thank you for being the best counselor ever! You are appreciated!

Office Staff - Thank you for the amazing "Spuds of Love" luncheon. Yummy on my tummy.

Casey Wagner, thanks for my morning treat on Friday! It was much needed and made my day! Thanks for thinking of me! -Kelly S.

Lisa H. - You are the BEE BOT queen!

First grade, thank you so much for the thoughtful notes from the kids! It made me feel so loved! –Kelly

TCE staff, thank you so much for coming to calibrations ready to go and with a positive attitude! I know the calibrations can be stressful, so I appreciate your resilience and flexibility!

Kristan, thank you for everything you have done to help us improve Student Council this year! The kids are always so excited. Love getting to work together to grow these leaders! –Kelly

Thank you, thank you wonderful teachers for all of the work you put into the Engineering Extravaganza evening!! It was a huge success and completely enjoyed by this Grandma and her precious 3rd grader! Sue

THANK YOU to everyone that has sent in recipes for the Town Center Family Cookbook! Casey

Rachel and Kylen, Thank you for partnering with me for the Engineering Extravaganza! You are both great partners! Casey

Leigh Ann- Thank you so much for helping install programs on my desktop. You are always so sweet to help me with technology!! Thank you! Lorri Brehm

Thank you to the office staff for such a yummy Spuds of Love lunch on Friday! You all rock!  -Renee

Office Staff, Thank you for the delicious lunch on Friday! What a treat!! It was a perfect ending to a very busy week!! We love you and appreciate you, A Hall!!!

TCE Fam...Thank you for joining in and celebrating World Read Aloud Day with our learners! I'm so grateful for your willingness to partner together to give our learners the opportunity to read aloud and share stories with those in and out of our CISD community! It means so much! Thank you!! Tina

Laura and Angie--Thank you so much for helping organize our upcoming Author visit! There is NO WAY I could have pulled this off so quickly without the two of you! I appreciate you both so much for helping bring this wonderful author to TCE for our learners! ---Tina

5th Grade Team--Thank you for always being willing to share your learners with me in a moments notice! The posters our 5th graders created for our author visit are wonderful! I can't wait to display their work. ---Tina

Kristan, I can not thank you enough! I love the writing lesson you did for my classes!! It went so smooth and I had a lot of confident! Love you and thank you ❤ - Catherine

Tina & Mary- Thanks for partnering with me on our station at Engineering Extravaganza. Cooper also wants to thank everyone! He had a ton of fun and could not stop telling me about everything he did on Thursday night!

Huge shout out to Laura and Sherri for getting our taters wrapped and ready for our luncheon on Friday! – Angie

Huge shout out to Miss Star for cooking up our potatoes for our luncheon!  It is so wonderful to know we can count on you to help us out in the kitchen!  - Angie

Thank you so much to everyone for another amazing Engineering Extravaganza Family Night!  It was such a joy to see all of our families having a blast together with problem solving, hands-on activities and learning about new technologies! - Angie

February Birthdays
Star Primera - 2nd
Ashlin Bowman - 10th
Heather Judd - 16th
Rachel Lim - 17th
Anne Lawler - 23rd

Capturing Learning Around the School 
and Engineering Night

Final Quotes for the Week
A few quotes to go along with my spring cleaning I have been trying to do. . .and if you know me. . .I kind of have a tendency to hold on to things (yes, Fairchild I am going to work on my closets in the office soon too!)