Thursday, December 15, 2016

Week of Jan 2

We hope you have enjoyed our December to Remember.  How can it already be done??!!!  This year has been going by SO FAST!!   Have a GLORIOUS TWO WEEKS OFF, sweet staff.  We wish you nothing short of the most safe, memorable, and restful break and can't wait to hear about the FUN you have.  I plan to continue to rest and get well, but truthfully, I think some laughter in the lounge the last couple of days has been good for my soul and body!!  Thank you for that!

Fond farewell goes out to our Alex.  We wish you a beautiful start to married life in California.  You will be very missed by us all, and we know you will stay in touch.

Welcome to our newest famiLEE member, Mariah Wallace.  Congratulations as she graduates from UNT on Friday.  We hope you had a chance to meet her the last two days (though it might have been hard since she blended right into Whoville with her hair up!) 

Have the BEST last day of 2016 with our children.  They deserve it!

  • that you already signed up for vertical teams at the beginning of the year?  I attached images from our sign up below.  If you do not see your name, please let me know where you will be heading on Tuesday.  You may wear jeans on Tuesday, and  I HAVE to say represent our school at these meetings.  Please have a growth mindset and positive attitude.  If you are on technology, please use it intentionally.  Network and meet some of the talented staff on other campuses.  I KNOW they will be seeking YOU out!!

We will call you down at 8:15 by house.  Please move with purpose and do your best to get seated quickly.  We are going to try putting our parent chairs along the cinderblock walls and push purple and yellow closer to center court.  I know it is HARD, but please TRY to have your LEEders of the week at a place that makes it easy for them to come up for their awards.   We will start with your Unity chants, so BE READY!

We will have Duc get every classroom an extra trash bag to help with lunch waste.  As Shanna emailed, lunches will be ready after 9:00, so get them when your house is ready.

Please follow Ashley's directions from her email regarding grades.  There is a FAST turnaround for her to print these when we get back.

Please get any items form the fridge by 9:30.  Ashley and I will be tossing anything "suspect."  Please, also visit your mailbox by 11:00.  Empty it of all contents.  There are many thank you notes in there.  Please make sure these get in take home folders.  Custodial does a deep cleaning of the campus these next two weeks.  May I suggest a FRESH START and take everything down of your idea paint so that your room gets cleaned as much as possible.  Erase what you can on your glass- you may return to some shiny glass if you do!  I will talk to custodial about what they are using that is smearing the walls.  PLEASE take down and store any holiday displays and decorations before leaving.  If ALL learners are safely gone you can leave at 1:15.

As you reflect for the new year, please come to our staff meeting with your one word.  We will practice using your creativity as we focus ourselves for the second semester.

Trustworthiness- keeping your word; doing what is right for yourself and others.

People trust in you when your attitudes, words, and motives align with what you actually choose to do.  This includes being honest about intakes, refusing to gossip and shift blame, and doing things the ethical way (even if it's quicker to do otherwise).

"Stand with anybody that stands right.  Stand with him while he is right, and part with him when he goes wrong." -Abraham Lincoln

December 19- Ayesha's Birthday
December 29- Ashley M's Birthday
January 3- District Staff Development
January 4- Day 7 on rotation schedule
                  Grades Due
                  Staff Meeting (3:30-5:00)
January 6- Social Spurs Luncheon
                  Send Home Report Cards
                  LEEdership Council Meeting (9:00)
                  Instrument Petting Zoo (1:00-2:45)
January 7- May's Birthday

Friday, December 9, 2016

Week of Dec 12

Thanks for your patience in waiting for this week's blog.  I'm sure you notice I am working at home. I hate missing school and not attending the CISD Holiday Open House, but I am being told to rest and I am going to listen. 

We hope you are looking forward to one more week of treats from Ashley and I.  It is SO MUCH FUN planning out ways to show you how much we care for you!  You are the BEST staff on the planet and deserve to be celebrated.

Thank you for the incredible coding opportunities for our kiddos this week.  We could feel the JOY in the building as the children (and you) were challenged learning new things and having fun while learning.  Your tweets were incredible!

Have the BEST final week of school for 2016.  We know there are so many exciting things happening all over the building.  Have an incredible two weeks off and take time to find the joy in your journey as you make memories with those you love.  We will miss you during the break, and be happy to catch up in the new year!  

  • that the district has completed Math RtI interventions and and progress monitoring?  Here is the link one more time
  • Stacey won a CISD Ed Foundation grant?  She will be ordering Bloxels for Kids.  
  • that we have 
  • Dad's Club has an event TOMORROW?  This is a family event at Urban Air, Coppell (next to Sprouts).  There is a Groupon 90 minutes here.
  • that Mariah Wallace (our new 2nd grade famiLEE member) will start on Wednesday?  Please take time to welcome her to our school.  We know she will have LOTS of questions, so we are counting on everyone to bring her up to the warp speed of Lee.

Our second LEEdership Council meeting will take place on Monday, December 12.  Leaders need to wear their council t-shirts and come to our meeting with 1 Big Idea (problem) generated from their class so we can narrow our focus for this year.  We will meet in the cafeteria.

PTO will be providing a luncheon from On the Border on Monday as well as hosting our Ugly Sweater Contest.  They will have a prize for the ugliest sweater of the day.  Jess won last year with one AWFUL ensemble from head to toe!  

Don't forget we have a PTO meeting at 6:30 on Tuesday night.  Please have at least one staff member and learner there to present for your house.

Join our third graders at the Economics Fair on Wednesday from 8:30-10:00.  Let your learners know about this shopping day so they can bring their money.  We will be on a minorly adjusted schedule on Wednesday.  Thank you for being flexible!
Blue- 10:00-10:45   (lunch and recess 12-1:00)
Green-10:45-11:30 (lunch and recess 11:30-12:30)
Specials Lunch 11:30-12:00
Purple- 12:00-12:45 (lunch and recess 10:30-11:30)
Red-12:45-1:30 (lunch and recess11:00-12:00)
Yellow-1:30-2:15 (lunch and recess 10:00-11:00)

Wear your green on Thursday (not Wednesday as our December to Remember calendar shows) as we celebrate that we are NOT Grinches this holiday season.  You have permission to watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas from 1:00-2:00 as Room Parents set up in your open spaces.

Wear your pajamas to school on Friday as we celebrate Polar Express Day.   You have permission to watch the Polar Express movie with your classes after Spirit Rally on Friday.

Join us at 8:15 for our 2nd 9 weeks Spirit Rally.  We will recognize Red and Black Superstars, our Yearbook Cover Winners, our Jump Ropers and MORE!  The CHS Madrigals will wrap up our gathering with a beautiful performance!

Lunch will be eaten in your spaces on Friday.  Please let the cafeteria know how many sack lunches you need for Friday.

Friday is a half day of school.  The elementary school early release time is 12:50.  Please communicate this to your parents.  You may leave once the office is clear of ALL learners.  We will need all hands on deck to make sure learners get home the proper way so EVERYONE can leave early.  

Cooperation- working together

Staying positive, being approachable, and expressing positive thoughts and feelings through both verbal and nonverbal communication help you build rapport with those around you.

"We must all live together as brothers or perish alone as fools."  -Martin Luther King Jr.

December 10- April's Birthday
December 11- Julie B's Birthday
December 12- PTO Luncheon
                    Ugly Sweater Day/Contest
                    RtI Meetings
                    LEEdership Council 9:00-10:00
                    Ashley's Shower (3:30)
December 13- Spelling Bee (3:30 Media Center)
                    PTO Mtg. (6:30 Cafe)
December 14- Economics Fair (8:30-10:00)
                    Lee Learner Luncheon (10:30-1:00)
                    Staff Holiday Party
December 15- Grinch Day
                    Spurs Savings (7:30-7:50)
                    Grinch Movie (1:00-2:00)
                    Winter Parties (2:00-3:00)
December 16- Last Day of 2nd 9 Weeks
                    Polar Express Day
                    Spirit Rally (8:15-9:15)
                    Polar Express Movie
                    Early Release (12:50)
December 19- Ayesha's Birthday
December 29- Ashley M's Birthday

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Week of Dec 5

Well folks, you can tell we are in the swing of holiday season.  Our dates to remember are INSANE, so please try to take care of yourselves and ENJOY these last two weeks with our kids.  Ashley and I have had so much fun and JOY planning your Caroling Treats for the next couple of weeks.  Look for them to continue each day as we make this a December to Remember.  We love you!

  • that our 4th and 5th graders will be performing at the CISD Holiday Open House?  They were invited along with only three other elementary schools.  Congratulations Ashley and learners!
  • there is a plan for the January 3 Staff Development Day?  Here is information, hot off the press, from Laurie O'Neill:     Page 1     Page 2
  • that it is time to nominate Red and Black Superstars?  Please take time to recognize a colleague or learner in your space that goes above and beyond here.  
  • that there is an Elementary Facilities Committee that will meet over the next couple of months to determine what short and long term solutions to increased enrollment in CISD will be?  If you want to learn more ask: Chantel, Wendy, Courtney, or Stacey.  We are serving on this important and influential team that will make decisions that WILL IMPACT ALL OF US AT LEE!

THANK YOU for your commitment to this school-wide event!  Please make sure to sign in on an extra duty pay form for two hours when you arrive so we do not have to stay late to collect the forms at the end of the event.  I will submit these to payroll for you.

Please tweet out your participation in #HourOfCode during coding activties this week.  You all are doing some INCREDIBLE things with our codeable resources that the world should see!!!

Please join us in the gym (sorry Julie and Julie!!) at approximately 1:30 for our annual visit from the CMSW Fine Arts Department.  The performance should last about 30-45 minutes as we will be excited to see our former fourth and fifth graders come back to perform.  Fifth grade may want to be packed up in case it leads into Team Time.

We will get to hear our Lee fourth and fifth graders performing holiday tunes on Thursday morning.  We will call you down following morning broadcast.

For those of you new to CISD, the CISD Holiday Open House is a BIG DEAL.  It is our district's way of saying thank you for all that you do.  Please plan to carpool over to admin and stay for some snacks, photos, drawings, and FUN during your conference time.  Specials designers and Blue House, let's see if we can get coverage from CK, Ashley, Ayesha, Claudia, Jacque, Candace, and Deepa so that you can enjoy some time there.   Get with me if you have ideas.

Don't forget that by next Friday you need to review the "Things to Look for in Today's Classroom" on page 111 of Innovator's Mindset.  Visit peers' spaces on a learning walk, find 2 examples that relate to one of these "things to look for." Upload the pictures to the media album, and in the caption, describe how these examples inspire innovation.

Justice- being fair, right and upholding what is right

Never cut in line.  If someone cuts in front of you, do not say or do anything about it.  Let it happen, but let a teacher know about it.  They will handle the situation.

"In matters of style, swim with the current.  In matters of principle, stand like a rock." -Thomas Jefferson

December 3- Mathurday (8:30-10:30)
December 5-9- Hour of Code Week
                         Maintenance and Grounds Appreciation Week
                         National Handwashing Awareness Week
                         HUGS Drive
December 5- CMSW Band and Choir Visit Lee
                      Mentor Meeting (Green House 3:30)
December 6-  Ed Foundation tshirt and Jeans
                       Purple House Field Trip (Perot)
                       Dana Center Science Training (3:30 Wilson)
                       1st Stop, Collaborate, and Listen (3:30 Austin)
                       Dad's Club Mtg. (7:00 Buffalo Wild Wings)
December 7-  Walk at School Wednesday
                       College Shirt Day
                       Staff Meeting (3:30-5:00)
December 8-  Blue House Field Trip (Dallas Heritage Village)
                       Buffalo Wild Wings Night
                       Choir and Instrumental Performance (8:15 and 6:30)
                       Campus Tour (1:00)
December 9-  CISD Holiday Open House (conference time)
                       Innovator's Mindset Post Due
                       Technology Support Staff Appreciation Day
                       Red and Black Superstar Nominations Due
December 10- Drama Club performance (MCL Grand Theater- 1:00)

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Week of Nov 28

I don't even know WHERE to begin, because THANK YOU is not nearly enough...but THANK YOU for an incredible day of celebration.  I am humbled by the consideration, generosity, and kindness today.  I feel so surrounded by GOOD PEOPLE!  (I sense a reflective blog post about this over the break, so BEWARE!)

Please enjoy next week off.  You are such a talented and hardworking staff. ENJOY being away from school with your family, friends, and loved ones.  I am so very excited for our Brides to Be and wish you much happiness as you start this new chapter of your lives.   I can't wait to hear about Taylor and her first Thanksgiving as a momma and Jamie, Amanda, and Samira having their first Thanksgiving in their new homes.  MUCH LOVE FAMILEE!!!

  • that we have multiple houses and grades struggling to determine if we use the Lee Scope and Sequence, the District Splash Screens, or Heather and Mary's Scope and Sequence?  To clarify, you should be using the District Splash Screens as much as possible.  As soon as the Schoology Course is up and going, you will be the first to know.
  • that some parents DO NOT REALIZE that we are off ALL of next week?  Please put a reminder in your weekly newsletter!
  • that we have sent an invoice in for BrainPop, BrainPop Jr., and BrainPop ESL?  Stay tuned for our Lee login and password.  YAY!
  • that we have received over $14,000 in funding for our ESL learners?  Claudia has done an amazing job of getting you some resources ordered!  We will be able to fund Science A-Z (online) for all, we will be getting math and science academic vocabulary cards,  and we will be adding some National Geographic leveled readers.  Ask her if you want to learn more or have ideas of other tools for our ESL friends! 
  • there is a 360 degree view of our campus on our home webpage now?  Check it out! 

For every $10 donated online, you get 5 free jeans passes.  $10 equals 30 meals.  Donate here and your passes will be in your mailbox by the end of the day Friday.   Don't forget to scroll down to Richard J Lee Elementary and put your name in.  Congrats, so far, to Layne, Angela, and Rebekah!

Our learners will be performing on Tuesday.  Please do not hold them responsible for the work they missed while they are gone. 

Please review the Campus Improvement Plan with your house before Wednesday's Leadership Meeting.  Write down any evidence of steps accomplished.

Don't forget to advertise this event to parents.  Your courses should be loaded in our Google Folder.  Thank you, Ashley for our flyer!

Please advertise our Community Action Club HUGS Drive with your parents.  Let's continue to share our good fortune with others.

Ashley and I will continue with 2.4 Differentiation walkthroughs this week.  We have gotten behind with school business and our observations.  Please be aware that we are looking for choice in learner experiences and scaffolding to meet varied needs in your classroom.  Think about the Team Time question: How do you know they know it?  What do you do when they do?

Fairness- playing by the rules

Whenever you are offered food, whether it be a birthday treat or snack, never take more than your fair share.

"Fairness doesn't mean that everyone gets the same.  Fairness means that everyone gets what they need."  -Rick Riordan

Nov 28- RtI Meetings
              CISD Board Meeting
Nov 29- Choir Performs at Northpark Mall (10:30-1:00)
               Stop, Collaborate and Listen (3rd and 5th- 3:30-5:00)
Nov 30- School Shirt w/ Jeans
              Lee Learner Luncheons (10:30-1:00)
              Leadership Team Meeting (3:30-5:00)
Dec 1- Spurs Savings (7:30-7:50 Cafe)
            Green House Field Trip (Perot)
Dec 2- National Intervention Services Day
Dec 3- Mathurday (9:00-10:30)

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Week of Nov 14

One more week until your well-deserved week off.  Enjoy this week with our learners and take time to reflect about your many blessings- I JUST LOVE our life principle this week!  One of those blessings is being part of our school famiLEE and for the love you receive, each day, from our children and each other.  

  • that many strategies that are good for ALL learners really help your ELL's?  Check out this Edutopia blog with Do's and Don't for Teaching English-Languge Learners.  
  • that IBM/Watson folks will be back on Monday to get more feedback.  Please take time to drop in and give them continued feedback.  This is part of our obligation being a pilot campus.  THANK YOU to those of you really trying to use the app!
  • George (we should be on a first name basis) wrote ANOTHER GREAT BLOG this week.  Check it out here and remember a positive attitude changes everything!

We will kick off JRFH on Monday with a pep rally in the gym at 8:15.  Please come down to the gym as soon as your house finishes watching morning broadcast.

We are excited to be able to work in Design Days without Title I Funds this year.  We are being a little creative and hoping that you recognize that we scheduled in a way that you also still get your conference time.  Please start on time, be ready to observe in some classrooms, and come with your ideas for increasing the sharing of learners in your vertical houses.

Don't forget to have your sweet kiddos ready to share house updates in regards to CBL and house business on Tuesday.

Thank you all for participating in the slow chat! We will be reading the next section Chapters 4-7 over the next few weeks. As you learn about the 8 things to look for in today's classroom on page 111, please find two examples around the campus that relate to one of these "things to look for". In our Schoology course, please upload the pictures to the media album and in the caption, describe how these example inspire innovation. This will be due by December 9th. 

We have two visitors coming to staff meeting on Wednesday.  First, we will have MP2 Energy coming to give us an update on our data dashboard.  (New friends- you may be asking what a data dashboard even is!)  They have been working on an update and also want to show you how it can enhance curriculum.  In addition, we will have the technology department visiting.  They will be training us in "threat assessment."

Family Feast Drive will take place both physically and virtually this year. NO MORE TURKEYS. Lee will collect canned/boxed food all week.  We will put donations in our bin on Friday.  We will label our bin with our school name so we can weigh the poundage of food was collected from each school. Wouldn’t it be great if LEE collected the MOST food?  Lee will also collect virtual food.  Go to this link so you can donate funds to provide meals for the food bank!  For example:  $10 = 30 meals!  Please scroll down on the home page to click on Richard J Lee Elementary to make a donation!  It will track how many meals our school provides.  Designers who participate will receive a jeans pass for every $10 donated.

Please be aware that we are looking for choice in learner experiences and scaffolding to meet varied needs in your classroom.  Think about the Team Time question: How do you know they know it?  What do you do when they do?  Here is a blog post about 100 Tools for Differentiating Instruction Through Social Media.

Gratitude- the act of being grateful; thankfulness

Always say thank you when given something.  When given an assignment, there is no moaning or complaining.

“The ones you should try to get even with are the ones who have helped you.” -Unknown

Nov 13- Samira's Birthday
Nov 14- Dec 9- Jump Rope For Heart
Nov 14- Yellow and Green Design 1/2 Days
               JRFH Assembly (8:15-9:30 Gym)
               IBM/Watson in Conference Room (12:30-4:00)
Nov 15-  Red and Purple Design 1/2 Days
               Fall Picture Retakes (Please remind parents)
               PTO Mtg. (6:30 Cafe) Please remind parents
Nov 16-  Convocation Tshirt and Jeans
               Blue Design 1/2 Day
               Staff Mtg. (3:30-5:00)
Nov 17- Chantel's Birthday
               Spurs Savings (7:30-7:50)
               Purple House Music Performance (8:30 and 6:30)
               Thanksgiving Lunch in Cafe (Lunchtimes)  Please remind Parents
               Buffalo Wild Wings Night
Nov 18-  Family Feast Drive
Nov 20-  Courtney's Birthday
Nov 21-  Jacque's Birthday
Nov 22-  Alex's Wedding- CONGRATULATIONS!
Nov 26-  Jess' Wedding- CONGRATULATIONS!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Week of Nov 7

It has been another incredible week at Lee.  We are looking forward to the Designing Time you have scheduled for next week as we approach the halfway mark the second nine weeks.  Can you believe it is already here!?  Please head out as soon as all learners are safely dismissed on Friday.  

  • CISD has a Parent University next Saturday?  Please share this information with parents and let them know they need to register online.
  • that CISD is hosting Tour 360 on January 25 and 26?  I will be asking for some of you to help present on CBL and join me in presenting about vertical scheduling.  If you are interested in this leadership opportunity, please email me or drop by.  
  • Tracie has daily offerings to keep your lunch options open?  Request through email by 10:00 to

Please submit the name and t-shirt size of your class LEEder by 1:00 pm on Tuesday.  We will announce these over the intercom at the end of the day.

Wednesday's Staff Meeting time will be used to meet and design for Mathurday.  We are giving you this job embedded time to collaborate, create the catalog description, and any other preparations for December 3.  We will start in A120 and break out into groups from there.

We have two tours coming through on Thursday.  Please make sure your digital signage is updated and your latest CBL is posted.


Please make sure you share this link with your famiLEEs so that they can RSVP to Friday's Veteran's Day Ceremony.  They should plan to arrive at 7:50 and expect to stay until approximately 8:45.  We will be called down by grade to the cafe at 8:00.  Please remember to wear red, white, and blue this day!

Please remember to request flex and SBEC time in Euphoria if you have attended Stop, Collaborate, Listen; Science Training; completed Apple Teacher coursework; Night at the Arboretum, etc.  We want to make sure that you get your hours recorded in your Euphoria portfolio.

Thank you to those of you that made sure to participate in our Slow Chat this week.  I also appreciate that you are discussing the chapter questions in your Team Time both as a house and grade.

Please be aware that we are looking for choice in learner experiences and scaffolding to meet varied needs in your classroom.  Think about the Team Time question: How do you know they know it?  What do you do when they do?  Here is a blog post about 3 Ways to Plan for Diverse Learners.

Effort- doing your best in an endeavor.

It is rude to ask if you are getting something for good behavior. You should be good and try your best because you are trying to better yourself, not because you are anticipating a reward.

“Don’t be content with being average.  It is as close to the bottom as it is to the top.” -Anonymous

Nov 6-  Daylight Savings
Nov 7- Welcome Back Mrs. Holcomb
             Salvation Army picks up canned goods
             LEEdership Town Hall
             Allaso Ranch Chaperone Meeting (6:30-Cafe)
Nov 8-  Election Day
             LEEdership Council Elections (announcing winners at 3:00)
Nov 9-  House Shirt and Jeans
             5th Grade at Allaso Ranch
             Staff Mtg. (3:30-?)
Nov 10- Balanced Literacy Academy
              5th Grade at Allaso Ranch
              Tours (9:00 and 1:00)
Nov 11- 5th Grade at Allaso Ranch
              Grades Due (8:30)
              Veteran's Day Ceremony (8:00-8:45ish)  Wear Red, White, and Blue
Nov 13- Samira's Birthday

*Please be getting a learner ready for next week's PTO meeting on Nov 15

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Week of Oct 31

It has been a busy but exciting week!  Red Ribbon Week always brings smiles to faces with theme days and a focus on great decision making.  Ashley and I are LOVING being in classrooms for walkthroughs and observations.  We see such greatness ALL over the building.  THANK YOU for that!  You continue to tell a beautiful story about #rjlyear3 on Twitter.  Your efforts and comments to others are appreciated and noticed!

  • that we have reviewed grading practices at our last two Principal's meetings?  We continue to try to calibrate throughout the district.  Stay tuned!
  • that George Couros has a great blog this week that speaks to passion driven learning?  Check it out here
  • that PTO is going to leave the food donations from the dance for one week so you can use the items for authentic math activities?  We can't wait to see what learners create and share.  Perfect timing to reinforce that data collection we have been seeing in spaces!

We will take the parade OUTDOORS this year.  At 8:00, we will make an announcement and ask everyone to head out to the track for 2 laps.  Please keep learners in an organized line and head out promptly.  Learners who do not dress up, and parents who come up to watch, can sit/stand on the inside perimeter and cheer on the participants.  THANK YOU TO ALL OF YOU THAT PARTICIPATED and got learners involved.  I believe we are going to have even greater participation this year because of your excitement!!!

Ashley and I walked the building with someone from custodial on Wednesday.  We were inspecting the exterior window washing.  Little did we know that the inside 2nd floor interior windows were cleaned after hours, too.  Imagine our surprise when we saw smeared handprints (we are talking wet and dripping) on windows that have already been professionally cleaned. First, we emphasize the importance of caring for our beautiful building. Second that you hold learners accountable for cleaning up when they make a mess.  Please be observant!  Third, that PAPER TOWELS are used to clean windows.  (NOT hands, NOT microfiber cloths, NOT socks, NOT spit)  We have seen all four of these.  We WANT learners designing on glass surfaces, but let's teach them proper cleaning and handling.  We will purchase window cleaner and have it in the office for you.  We also see windowsills where learners have PEELED the paint off of the walls, pencil writing on aluminum door frames, and paper towels all over bathroom floors.  We need to unify together and are asking for your help and diligence in these efforts.  We want to keep our new school looking new and teach these habits to learners.  THANK YOU!

Samira sent an email, today, with the specifics regarding LEEdership Council.  I also included the dates on the staff calendar.  Please remember that those who have already served on LEEdership Council are tasked with seeing the leadership capacity in others and should not run for a spot.  They may need reminding.  Please look for Google Form from Samira for declaration of candidacy to send home in your Friday communication.

Just a friendly reminder that Chapters 1-3 should be read by Wednesday.  Ashely, Jessica, and Jacque will be hosting a *SLOW* Twitter chat, beginning Tuesday November 1st through Friday, November 4th.  Check out the directions for our Slow Twitter Chat here.  We can't wait to grow together, virtually, through the Innovator's Mindset book study!

If you have items for my blog, please email them to me by Wednesday.  Short and concise is the rule to live by.  If you have items to go in Designer newsletters, type PUT IN WEEKLY NEWSLETTER in the subject line so designers can easily search their inbox for your blurbs.

Enjoy your one hour on Wednesday where you learn about a topic of YOUR choice related to YOUR goals, and earn Flex credit for it.  This is a time for learning.  Please post to Today's Meet after 4:30, but before 5:00, on Wednesday and share what you learned during your time in order to get credit for your hour.  You may choose to participate in the slow chat part of this time.  Alli will also be offering a technology session.  She will email that info to you. You may also be interested in this differentiation self-assessment.

Please be aware that we are looking for choice in learner experiences and scaffolding to meet varied needs in your classroom.  Think about the Team Time question: How do you know they know it?  What do you do when they do?  This is a great video Ashley found on principles of differentiation from Carol Ann Tomlinson.

(thank you fourth grade for your work on the ADI pilot!!)

Perseverance- the ability to persist or continue to the end

Make every effort to be as organized as possible.

"The man who moves mountains begins by carrying away small stones." -Chinese Proverb

Oct 30- Jessica's Birthday
Oct 31- Nov 4- Last week for Write a Check Fundraising
Oct 31-  Learners Declare Candidacy for LEEdership Council
              Healthy Mind, Healthy Body Assembly (1:45-2:30 Gym- we will sit like Spirit Rally)
Nov 1- Education Foundation t-shirt and Jeans
            K-2 Math Educator Academy
            Alex's Bridal Shower (3:30 Media Center)
Nov 2-  College Shirt with Jeans
             Digital LEEdership Council Campaign Posters Due
             Chapters 1-3 of Innovator's Mindset Read
             IBM Feedback (Small conference room 8:30-12:00)
             Fed Ex Day (3:30-4:30)
             Padlet Webinar (7:00-8:00pm)
Nov 3- 3-5 Math Educator Academy
            Claudia visits houses during Specials to review TELPAS & Years in School
Nov 4- LEEdership Speeches and Primary Elections
            Chris Barton Author Visit (see schedule here)
Nov 5- Dads Club Event (Main Event)

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Week of Oct 24

Thank you for your FIERCEness this week!  You did a wonderful job of representing our school with our many visitors and continue to impress.  Our guests leave Lee feeling inspired and hopeful with new ideas to take back to their schools.  This is because of each and every one of YOU!  Please remember you are "Here for a Reason" and that YOU make a difference in education and at Lee.

Thank you for celebrating us on Bosses' Day and making Monday a special day for us.

We also thank you for staying late for Watson training and moving full steam ahead with our pilot.

  • that Dodi Casper has a SS Newsletter for you to view? There are some voting and Veteran's Day ideas.  Be thinking about how you will incorporate the election and Veteran's Day in your lesson designs the next couple of weeks.  LEEdership Council info will be coming your way from fifth grade, soon!
  • the cafeteria may be short handed on Friday.  If they are, we may have to use only one line.  We MIGHT also have a guest server (trying to move things on my calendar and secure a hairnet- ha)  THANK YOU for your flexibility!
  • thanks to PTO Reflex Math should be back up and running?  Please write a card of thanks for this pricey support from them.  If you have new learners that need added, please email Ashley.

Please make sure the Write a Check letters go home in report card envelopes on Friday.  These were copied and placed in your mailboxes.  It is imperative that the letter makes it home.  The letter is also posted on Peach Jar for any parents that need another copy.  WAC is our BIGGEST fundraiser of the year and we need you to pump your learners up about it.  Please read the letter so you are informed what our funds go toward.

If you have not taken the survey (or had your learners complete it) PLEASE get this done this week so that it is off of all of our "to do" lists.  Participation is crucial for making campus technology decisions.  THANK YOU!

You may wear jeans if you participate in Red Ribbon Week theme days.

Please encourage learners and plan to participate in Friday's parade.  A book should accompany "costumes" and learners are allowed to wear their costume to the dance on Friday night.  Entrance into the event is free with a food donation that will be donated to Metrocrest.  PTO will communicate what each grade/house is bringing.  Please plan to attend the dance and engage with the learners and their famiLEEs.  We love it when you bring your family, too!   It is a great opportunity to build relationships and have FUN!

Target the Problem! is a tool to help parents and Designers understand the specific problems a child may be having with reading. You'll find practical suggestions on what you (and kids themselves) can do to help learners overcome or deal with their reading difficulties.

Ashley and I have started our observations this week.  It is SO WONDERFUL being in your space for 45 minutes.  Remember we are to see the entire lesson cycle, so you need to plan a lesson that encompasses the full lesson cycle.  If you did not get a calendar invite for an observation, please email your evaluator.  This week we start a new domain focus during our walkthroughs.  We will focus on:  2.4 Differentiation.  Be aware, if you have your observation in the next four weeks, you will not receive a walkthrough in this domain.  We will address it in your TTESS observation.  THANK YOU!

Problem Solving- creating solutions; finding answers

You should never complain if the line is too long, the food isn't good, or there is a wait.  You don't want to be negative to the point where you spoil the enjoyment of the event for others.

"We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations." -Charles Swindoll

Oct 23: Britt's Birthday
Oct 24- Nov 4: Write a Check Fundraising
Oct 24- Oct 31: Red Ribbon Week
Oct 24:  Wear pajamas
Oct 25:  Wear boots
              Mentor Meeting (3:30 Green House)
Oct 26:  Wear hats or have crazy hair
              Lee Learner Luncheons (10:30-1:00)
              Leadership Meeting (3:30)
Oct 27:  Spurs Savings (7:30-7:50 Cafe)
              Learn About Lee Learning Walk (8:00-9:00)
Oct 28:  TOY Nominations Due to District
              Storybook Character Parade (8:00-8:30ish)
              5th Grade Bully Program (1:00-2:30 CMSW)
              So You Think You CAN Dance (6:30-8:30)

Friday, October 14, 2016

Week of Oct 17

This "short" week sure has gone by in a FLASH!  THANK YOU for going with the flow with our IBM guests and tours this week.  Shanna and Chantel will be out on Friday.  There is no doubt you can all hold down the fort.  Please leave as soon as learners are safely dismissed.  Have a super weekend!

  • that with the new budget system, our approved vendors list is KAPUT?  Please contact Nikki (X6026) if you need to know if a vendor is approved before completing your POs.  We need your help on POs.  Make sure you include shipping costs and print out your shopping bag if your order was made online.
  • interior and exterior window washing will start happening the next couple weeks?  Please put a sign on any glass surface you do not want washed.
  • that we will be getting a new nighttime custodian?  I will continue to keep you posted, but sadly, Tina has gone to Grand Prairie.
  • some folks have already completed their Clarity surveys and their classes, too?

You all have been doing an excellent job using our Team Time agendas, and I am proud of the work that you have accomplished as both houses and grades.  I recognize that "planning/designing" has to be done outside that time for your grades, and I want to acknowledge the commitment that many of you have made to stay late or come early to plan with your peers.  THANK YOU! Your extra time to learn from one another SHOWS!

Please wear jeans and a house shirt on Monday.  We will call you down at 8:00 to sit where your houses were for our Unity Rally.  Come prepared with one adult house representative (could even be your Specials person if they like) and one learner to participate in our teacher/learner event at the end.  We will be on a normal schedule on Monday.

Please fill out this Needs Assessment Survey for the new 9 weeks.  In addition, Jacque created a  document for House and Team Time agenda topics.  I added this resource under the IC tab on our Faculty Website.

AD/HD and dyslexia are distinct conditions that frequently overlap, thereby causing some confusion about the nature of these two conditions. It is estimated that 30% of those with dyslexia have coexisting AD/HD. Coexisting means the two conditions, AD/HD and dyslexia, can occur together, but they do not cause each other. Take a look at this quick “fact sheet” for more information!  (Thanks, Mary!)

We will have visitors from high performing school districts visiting from 9-11 and 1-3 on Tuesday.   This visit is a big deal and aligned with the Visioning Document that spearheaded our CISD Learning Framework. Guests are coming to watch lesson design and digital learning.  Please have your digital signage up, please use ALL areas of the building, showcase any Schoology you are using, and ramp up the SAMR.

Penny and Deana will be bringing a group of 25 APs from the North Texas Regional Consortium to our school on Thursday afternoon.   The goal of their visit is to learn more about our school because it is modeled after the Visioning Document.  Much like our TIA visits, they are looking for transformative practices, authentic assessment, digital learning anytime/anywhere, and accountability for learning.


Don't forget we have our training on Wednesday and Thursday from 4-6.  If you get a chance, ask May, Cassie, or Jacque about their preview time.  I have no doubt you are going to be excited to finally learn more about this tool!

This is our final week focusing on 3.2 Managing Student Behavior.  Our goal is for you to have two walkthroughs in this domain.  We are impressed with some of the management tools that we see in place like: CHAMPS, self-paced learning in Schoology, assigned jobs during collaborative work, self- reflection, goal setting and more.  Nothing helps manage student behavior more than ENGAGEMENT, wait time, and consistency!

Accountability-being responsible for one's actions

If you are asked a questions in conversation, you should ask a question in return.  It is only polite to show others that you are just as interested in them as they are in you.

"I am NOT a product of my circumstances.  I AM a product of my decisions." -Stephen Covey

National School bus Safety Week
Oct 17- RtI Meetings
             Spirit Rally (8:15 Gym)
             CISD Ed Foundation Grants Due (4:30)
Oct 18- Deepa's Birthday
             Grades Due (8:30)
             Transformation in Action Site Visits
Oct 19- Convocation Shirt and Jeans
             Watson Training (4:00-6:00 Lee Yellow House)
Oct 20- NTVI Group Visits Lee (12:30-3:30- A120)
             Watson Training (4:00-6:00 Lee Yellow House)
Oct 21- Report cards go home
             Great Expectations training at Lee (A120-A122)
             Flu Clinic (1:00)

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Week of Oct 10

Have a wonderful Friday conferencing with learners and their parents.  It is the perfect time for our parents to witness the great learning experiences you give their learners and for them to own their learning.  THANK YOU for your hard work on goal setting with each child!!  The office has ordered sandwich platters and chips from Which Wich tomorrow.  They should arrive around 11:00, so please come down and feed yourself.  ENJOY the long weekend! I hope you make it to the fair and get some well deserved rest!

  • some folks are "borrowing" items from our media center without checking them out?  Please make sure you scan out any items you need from the media center?  If you do not know how to do this, please see Melinda or leave the item with a sticky note for her to check out at her earliest convenience.
  • there is a new Director of Marketing & Business Partnerships for CISD?  Her name is Tammy Taylor and she is WONDERFUL.  If you are looking for ways to connect with businesses and experts, she is an email away! 
  • parents are highly interested in online textbook access to reinforce learning at home?  Can you please link in web addresses for your online textbooks that support your weekly learning?  I can share more at Team Time, but have already talked with 4th and 5th grades.
  • that your presentation Macs, dongles, projectors, and apple TVs ARE NOT PERMITTED to be moved?  You received communication from Jennifer at the beginning of the school year and will be receiving another reminder.  Please fix this immediately!

It is often thought that those identified with Dyslexia are held back by their disability. The reality, however, is that there are many famous people in the past and in the world today who have overcome this disability in order to accomplish many great things! Watch this emotionally moving, but short video of famous Dyslexics.  (Thanks, Mary!)

You will be receiving an email about the district Clarity Survey from Alli.  Please complete this at your earliest convenience and have your learners complete it, too.

We will be calling grades to come down (starting with Kinder) at 8:05 so that we can start promptly at 8:15.  Please bring learners in at a level zero.  We will review audience etiquette and can't wait to watch Red House perform!

We have so many incredibly talented folks and people that go above and beyond at our school.  Please take time to nominate them through one of these recognition programs.  Red and Black winners will be recognized at our Spirit Rally by Bennett Ratliff.  GEMS are recognized before school board meetings by Anthony Hill.  Super Teachers get to go to lunch with Dr. Waldrip and are presented with a shirt from our Asst. Superintendents.

Do you know an extraordinary educator that has made a difference in the lives of his/her learners by exemplifying best teaching practices while serving as an ambassador for public education?  Someone who understands and demonstrates transformational leadership in the classroom? An educator who fully embraces the tenants of the Learning Framework and who supports and promotes the mission/vision of CISD?  We need nominations completed by October 28.

Do you have an innovative idea that you would like the Education Foundation to help pay for?  Grants must be Principal approved and are due October 17.  GOOD LUCK!

Our Dad's Club will host their first family event on Friday Night.  Learners bring their tents and sleeping bags to school and camp out in our cafe and gym.  A movie will be shown and pizza and snack will be included.  Please share this link to have them register for the event.

Enjoy your one hour on Wednesday where you learn about a topic of YOUR choice related to YOUR goals, and earn Flex credit for it.  This is a time for learning.  Please post to Today's Meet after 4:30, but before 5:00, on Wednesday and share what you learned during your time in order to get credit for your hour.

Cottonwood Creek and Lee will be having FedEx at the same time on October 12.  Since cloning technology has not advanced so far as to allow me to be at both schools at the same time and since both schools are interested in learning more about Schoology, I am hosting a JOINT FedEx session open to BOTH campuses.  This session will be held in the DLC office at Brock (aka the halfway point between both schools).  Because of the design of this session, it will be limited to the first 20 educators that sign up.  Click the sign up link HERE to learn more! Please sign up by this Friday if you plan to attend.

Thank you for attending the first round of RtI meetings and bearing with us as we set up a new system.  I appreciate how prepared you all were and how dedicated you are to helping problem-solve for your learners.  Please remember to continue to sign up using the RtI Meeting Sign-Up (at least a day in advance) to check in with us and provide us with current data for those in the process. 

Thank you to those who attended our first BWW Night!  We raised almost $200 for our school!  That is what helped pay for our sandwiches for Friday.  Please put the new card in your newsletters and remind learners to mention that they are with Lee when they eat at BWW.  The next night is Thursday, October 13th, and Red House is making an appearance.  

3.2 Managing Student Behavior- By the end of next week, you should have one walkthrough from Ashley and Chantel in this domain.

Self-Discipline- the ability to choose and control one's own actions.

Make eye contact.  When someone is speaking, keep your eyes on him or her at all times.  If someone makes a comment, turn and face that person.

"If we were supposed to talk more than listen, we would have two mouths and one ear. " -Mark Twain

Oct 8- Chess Club Date
Fire Prevention Week
National School Lunch Week
Oct 11-14- CoGAT Testing
Oct 11- Kristina's Birthday
             Stop, Collab, Listen (1st Grade- 3:30 Austin)
             PTO Mtg. (6:30 Cafe)
             CISD Twitter Chat (7:30)
Oct 12- House Shirt and Jeans
             Shanna's Birthday
             Fed Ex Day (3:30-4:30)
Oct 13- Spurs Savings (7:30-7:50 Cafe)
             Red House Performance (8:15 and 6:30 Cafe)
             Tour- Mansfield ISD- 30 people (9:00)
                       UME Prep- 5 people (1:00)
             Stop, Collab, Listen (Kinder- 3:30 Austin)
             Science Training (Second Grade- 3:45 DCE)
             Buffalo Wild Wings Night
Oct 14- Social Spurs Tailgate Luncheon
             Corissa's Birthday
             Dad's Club Camp In (7:00 pm-8:00am)
Oct 15- Alex's Birthday
             Sheltered Instruction Training Due from New Designers
             Unity in the Community- Red House (Coppell Farmers Market)