Redbird Roundup, Vol 12

Friday, November 2, 2018

Principal's Greeting

Happy Friday Norris Staff!


Everyone can get very excited, we get an extra hour of sleep this weekend! I know I am excited. We have a big week ahead as well for the first week of November. A few highlights:


Monday, November 5 is our monthly faculty workshop. After some reflection, the format will change a little. We will start in the library to debrief on peer observations, then everyone will go to two previously selected stations of their choice. I am so excited to have our very own teachers presenting. You are the experts.


Tuesday will feature some PD on data, and how it applies to all content areas. Thursday we will have our monthly VILS PD.


Winter sports have begun and there are many activities coming up, please try and catch our students in action.


Our fundraiser also wrapped up this week. I know the chocolate can be a challenge, but this is huge in providing things for our students. Last year we used the money to buy prizes for the NSCAS Pep Rally, the MAP Growth Celebration, as well as to fund several field trips and the #itsaRedbirdthing t-shirts.


Get lots of rest this weekend and keep drinking lots of fluids! Winter illness is upon us, so self-care is super important.



Have a great weekend!


Dr. Carr

November 5-November 9

Monday, November 5: Faculty Workshop After School

Tuesday, November 6: Make-up Faculty Workshop for Activity Sponsors and Coaches, 7 a.m. in room 129; Team PD during the Day (Data); Boys Basketball at Buffett

Wednesday, November 7: Girls Swim vs. Buffett at Norris

Thursday, November 8: VILS PD by Team during the day; Boys Basketball vs. King at Norris

Friday, November 9: Girls Swim vs. King at Norris

Staff Introductions

This week we will meet Brian Kohlhaas, Troy Langabee, and Tanya Partridge.

Brian Kohlhaas

Name: Brian Kohlhaas

How many years have you been teaching? This is year 15.

What is your favorite thing about Norris Middle School? My 7A team of teachers and the students have been wonderful!


What is one of your favorite quotes? I can’t remember all the times I tried to tell myself to hold on to these moments as they pass. – Counting Crows

What’s your favorite indoor/outdoor activity? Cooking indoors and outdoors

What chore do you absolutely hate doing? Dusting – especially moving all the little knick knacks just to put them right back!

When you have 30 minutes of free-time, how do you pass the time? Spend time with my wife and 3 daughters.

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? Email all of you a nice farewell note!

What could you give a 40 minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation? Baseball

Sweet or salty? And what food is your favorite in that category? Both depending on the day. Salty: Ranch oyster crackers Sweet: cookies

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Troy Langabee

Name: Troy Langabee

How many years have you been teaching? 15 or so years

What is your favorite thing about Norris Middle School? The team concept and the staffs effort working with students.


What’s your favorite indoor/outdoor activity? Playing with my kids/Golfing to get away from kids.

What chore do you absolutely hate doing? Putting laundry away.

If you could choose to stay a certain age forever, what age would it be? 26, knees didn’t hurt then.

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? Buy season tickets to Detroit Lions football, then buy the wife something for buying season tickets.

What TV show would you binge watch if you had the time? The League. A comedy about a group of guys who play fantasy football.

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Tanya Partridge


Name: Tanya Partridge

How many years have you been teaching? I’ve been a School Psychologist for about 7 years, with the last 4 being at OPS.

What is your favorite thing about Norris Middle School? The genuine kindness of students and staff here.


What is one of your favorite quotes? Some days you just have to create your own sunshine.

What’s your favorite indoor/outdoor activity? Walking my dogs with my family. It’s a little tricky with a toddler and two greyhounds but with the help of my husband we manage it.

What chore do you absolutely hate doing? Cleaning

If you could choose to stay a certain age forever, what age would it be? 30

When you have 30 minutes of free-time, how do you pass the time? Sleep, I’ve got an 18-month-old that keeps me busy:)

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? Buy an island somewhere warm and tropical to retreat to with family and friends.

What is something you learned in the last week? That my daughter knows more words than I thought she did. Watching a child’s language skills develop is an amazing thing to see!

What TV show would you binge watch if you had the time? The Office

What could you give a 40 minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation? Greyhounds and the myths associated with greyhound racing. Also, why they make the best pets

Sweet or salty? And what food is your favorite in that category? Salty, I’d much rather binge on pretzels than sweets.

Powerful Practices

Tech Integration

Mr. Degbe jumped right in to using iPads in his Spanish for Native Speakers classes. Students just finished learning about famous Hispanics and were able to select someone and research them, and then give a presentation to the class using their device. Great job Mr. Degbe!

Dynamic Warm-Up

Mr. Hammond is teaching the basketball rotation now in P.E. Before getting into skills, students complete a dynamic warm-up, which is one of the Secondary P.E. Look For's. This helps students avoid injury and maximize their workout time. After warm-up, students got into a 3 on 3 tournament, which is always exciting!

Descriptive Feedback and Re-teaching

Our music teachers really exemplify giving descriptive feedback and re-teaching. They take students through a few measures of a song, ask them to evaluate their performance, and then go back and re-teach if necessary. Also, their team teaching models allows them to help individual sections with their parts. Great job Music!

Using Classroom

Ms. Wright has her students do silent reading at the start of her 1/2 block. Students can read a book, or get on the app "Sora" and read. Before they get on the app, she ensures all of them are on Classroom so she can monitor what they are doing. Great procedure set up.

Strive for 95!

We talk about our attendance goal daily, strive for 95, which means 95% daily attendance for each kid. To help reach this goal, we are recognizing our students who have weekly perfect attendance each Monday by posting their names outside the office, and drawing five random kids from each grade level to receive a prize. Every day counts in our strive for 95!

#Bekind

Our ACP students are working on leaf rubs in Ms. Boyer's art class. They did a few themselves, but some very kind 8th graders also made extras for the ACP students. Thank you to those students, and we can't wait to see the finished products!

Norris Staff and Students Seen and Heard

Winter Sports Have Begun!

Our first session of winter sports have begun, with girls swim (coached by Ms. Boyer and Ms. Greco) and boys basketball (coached by Mr. Plank and Mr. Hammond). Girls swim has their first contest on Thursday of this week, and boys basketball starts next Tuesday. Be sure to check out our student athletes!

RASA Family Night

Ms. Switzer with RASA does an incredible Dia de los Muertos Family Night, and this year's was held on Tuesday, October 30. There were a ton of events including food, face painting, painting sugar skulls, decorating cookies and cupcakes, designing picture frames, and altar, and bobbing for apples. It was a fun-filled family night, with amazing attendance. Our students had an amazing time sharing this event with their families!

Redbird Alumni

Heather Strouts is a Norris Alum and is currently student teaching in PE with Ms. Bressman. The picture on the right is her with her family. The one below is from when she was an 8th grader at Norris, in 1996. See if you can recognize the amazing and dapper staff member in the picture with her :)


We are glad to have her student teaching at Norris!

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Final Thought

The month of November reminds us to be thankful for so many things. I would encourage you to take today, this weekend, or next week, and share with your team how thankful you are for them. There are days that are frustrating and challenges we must overcome, but it is so much easier to do that with an amazing team around you. Make this a "Feel the Love Friday" and share a word of thanks with your teammates.