Lively Middle School

November 19, 2021

Greetings Falcon Nation,

This week was full of student activity. Students went on field trips, had fall performances, and engaged in class presentations. It is always great to see Lively students and staff create meaningful learning experiences! Our teachers also received over 200 personal thank you notes from students, parents, and other staff. It’s these examples of kindness that make me incredibly thankful for each one of you and the care you show our students and staff. It is the generous gift of your time and talent that enhances the many Lively Middle School happenings.

Ms. Garcia's Classes. Students create ancient civilizations.

Ms. Clarson's Social Studies Class

Ms. Clarson's Sheltered Social Studies classes learned about African story-telling and students had the opportunity to write their own stories! Lively is excited to have Sheltered Content-Area classes which support our emergent bilingual students to develop English language and content knowledge!

SEL & Whole Child Update

This week students continued to learn about Native Americans and Indigenous Peoples by learning about the historical impact of reservations and the importance of land acknowledgements. Students engaged in critical thinking and group discussions after analyzing historical maps and film.

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Silver Rave Award

Congratulations to this month’s Silver Rave Award recipient, Ms. Kendall Torres. Ms. Torres has demonstrated excellence in supporting all students. She is the lead teacher for our Gender Sexuality Alliance (GSA) Club providing a safe and inclusive space for LGBTQIA+ students and allies. She facilitates the creation of schoolwide projects that help to make Lively a positive school environment for all students. Thank you and congratulations Ms. Torres!

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Important Upcoming Test Dates

We will be administering the Algebra I EOC STAAR test for students who took Algebra I last year. This is only for students who opted out of the STAAR test last school year. If you are eligible to take this test, you will be contacted with more specific details about the exam. Additionally, we will be administering our second district Short Cycle Assessment for both reading and math on December 15th, 2021.

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Creative Learning Initiative at Lively

Lively Middle School is a sustaining member of Austin ISD’s Creative Learning Initiative (CLI) Campuses. We also have an ongoing partnership with Creative Action, an organization that works with young people across socioeconomic settings to ignite social change. Our teachers collaborate with teaching artists from Creative Action to implement TEKS based projects that incorporate the arts and social reflection to make learning relevant for all of our students.

This month, Lively’s 7th grade ELAR classes worked with Creative Action to design a project where students analyzed the poems “We Wear the Mask” by Paul Lawrence Dunbar and “The Mask” by Maya Angelou, and then reflected on their own identities. Students used paint and other mediums to design masks that show their “visible self” on the outside, and more private inner reflections on the inside of the mask. These projects will be displayed as a representation of our collectively unique and diverse student body for all students, teachers, and visitors to see.

Mrs. Hernandez, 7th grade ELAR teacher and 7th grade team leader said, “Making masks engaged every single student. Every student was excited about poetry and self-reflection, and the project tied perfectly into our curriculum and TEKS.”

Check out the photos below of students engaging in creative learning. Lively is committed to continue making learning meaningful and rigorous through a variety of creative projects and activities! Visit Austin ISD’s Creative Learning Initiative webpage for more information.

Evening of Wonder

We are excited to welcome back virtual learners on January 5th for the start of the Spring semester! All Falcons, including our virtual learners, are encouraged to join us for Evening of Wonder on Tuesday, Dec 7th @ 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Virtual learners will have the opportunity to walk their class schedule and all future and current students can meet their teachers, counselors, and administrators!

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What: EOW is a whole community event where we showcase our campus to prospective families and roll out the first draft of our choice sheets for SY 2022-2023 for current families. Who: All Lively staff and community

When: Tuesday, December 7th 5:30-7:30pm

Where: In-Person!!!!

Why: This is our largest recruitment event of the year and a fun way for our community to come together. This year, it is also a great opportunity for our current students to showcase their work and serve their community by welcoming our prospective families.

Evening of Wonder Volunteer Sign Up

Calling the Falcon Community!!! We need you to volunteer for our annual showcase, please fill out the form.

Honing the Humanities-Raising our Rigor!

This week our English Language Arts and Social Studies teachers met after-school to kick off our “Honing the Humanities” initiative to increase the rigor and student engagement in our core Humanities classrooms. We were excited to align our curriculum by finding common interdisciplinary themes and incorporating more reading, discussions, and engagement strategies so that all of our students are challenged and engaged in their classes. We will continue to build on our work in December and will launch our revitalized curriculum in January. We will also release a video previewing these exciting updates with our community before the Winter Break. Thank you to all of our parents and students for providing valuable feedback to help us improve the learning experience for all of our Falcons.

8th Grade Civic Engagement Capstone Reboot

All 8th grade Magnet students should be working on their year-long Civic Engagement Capstone Project that is supported by their English Language Arts and Social Studies teachers. Any 8th grade Falcon students can also engage in this unique project to deepen their learning and understanding of today’s important social issues.

When we return from Thanksgiving Break, Magnet Director Northcutt will meet with our 8th grade magnet students during Advisory to reset and clarify expectations for their Capstone Projects. Students who did not complete their Capstone Summer work can use this loom video that Director Northcutt made to guide them through the foundational work and have until the end of the fall semester to complete the beginning pieces of their project. Students are also welcome to email Director Northcutt or our librarian, Ms. Yvonne Stecke for help and assistance.

We are excited to see what our students create in these projects and will have a Capstone Fair in May so that parents and our community can enjoy our student’s work and see them present what they have learned.

Limitless Magazine

The Fall Limitless Magazine is ready for pre-order! Each copy costs $5 for a full-color professionally printed magazine. We only have a limited supply, so reserve your copy today!

Fill out the form below to reserve a copy. We will have them back from the print shop within 3 weeks, and will reach out to you when it it ready for pick-up.

My personal Thanksgiving reflection will include a special thanks for the gift of each of you. You make Lively a special place and I am happy you are a part of our community. Here is wishing that this coming week is a special time for you and your families as we hit ‘pause’ in our busy lives and take time to be thankful for one another. May your Thanksgiving gathering be memorable and may you enjoy every day with those that you care for and those that care for you.

Finally, a very special thank you to all of the parents, volunteers, and Lively PTSA for providing all of our teachers and staff with a Thanksgiving luncheon. I know everyone felt loved and cared for. Rest this coming week and I look forward to seeing you back at school on Monday November 29th.

Stacie Holiday, Principal

Congratulations to Dr. Holiday for working so hard on your doctorate!!!

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THank you PTSA for our delicious Thanksgiving Lunch!

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Thank you for the turkeys for our families, Amalgamated Transit Union

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Mr. Perk's Class- Students created films about the Texas Revolution this week.

AVID Field Trip to UT

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art corner

Giving Tuesday is around the corner. Please support our Lively artists by donating to our Lively Art Snap Raise Fundraiser today. By clicking on the link below your contribution will provide the art room with new technology, tables and display rails/panels for our Lively Artist to use and showcase their creations. You can also show your support by posting the link on your social media or texting it to family and friends. Thank you for your support.

Art Fundraiser

Click HERE to donate!

Mr. Saucedo's Guitar Concert

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Forensics learning how to test for different types of blood types.

environmental Science

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Band Corner

I want to congratulate the six Lively Band Wind Ensemble students that auditioned for Region Band these past 2 weeks. These students prepared extra music in addition to what we are playing at Lively and competed against students from other middle schools in Austin:

  • Cain Darling, Alto Saxophone -District Band
  • Andy Stahlman, Baritone Saxophone - District Band and qualified for Round 2 Region auditions
  • Carlos Aldrete, Tuba -District Band and quaified for Round 2 Region auditions
  • Vita Istomina, Flute -District Band and also made Region Band as 13th Chair overall
  • Ryder Armstrong- District Band and also made Region Band as 5th Chair overall
  • Ryan Curtis -District Band and also made Region Band as 1st Chair overall

We are extremely proud of all of their dedication and hard work that went into preparing this music. There will be a Region Band performance at the Ausitn ISD Perfroming Arts Center, Saturday, December 4th, 2:30pm for those that made Region Band.

counselor corner

Upcoming 8th Grade High School Events

  • Austin High School Showcase: Maroon & White Night: December 2, 6:30-8:00 pm at Performing Arts Center, Austin High School
  • Crockett High School Fall Showcase: Early College, Cosmetology, Construction, Automotive, Dual Language: December 1, 6:00 pm-7:30 pm at Crockett High School
  • Travis Early College and P-TECH program information: December 1, 8:00am in library
  • LASA Application assistance mentoring Tuesdays 7:45 am & Wednesdays 3:15 pm Lively Library
  • High School Fair - all AISD High Schools: Saturday, December 11, 2021 – 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. You can have it all in Austin ISD! We are excited to welcome students and their families to our 2021 High School Fair. Attendees will learn more about our diverse and innovative programming such as Advanced Academics, Career and Technical Education, Early College Programs, Fine Arts and more! This year's fair is being held at 9 a.m.–noon, Saturday, Dec. 11 at Eastside Early College High School and International High School, 900 Thompson St. Enter along Neal Street, parking will be available.
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Important Deadline Dates

If your child is a middle schooler enrolled in a high school course. There’s some important information and deadlines you should know about.

First of all, tutoring and academic support are available for students. Contact your child’s teacher or school counselor to learn more about these options. Also know the grade they get at the end of the semester will be their final grade on their high school transcript and could affect class rank down the line.

However, if they drop the class by the below deadline, they can enroll in the middle school equivalent course if one is available. This grade then won’t affect their high school transcript, GPA or class rank.

Single Semester Fall Course Withdrawal Deadlines:

  • The deadline to withdraw from a high school single-semester course is Dec. 3.

Spring 2022 Course Withdrawal Deadlines:

  • The deadline to withdraw from a high school credit course with a state EOC exam (such as Algebra I) is January 28, 2022.

    • All middle school students enrolled in a high school EOC course (such as Algebra I) after the deadline will be expected to take the EOC.

  • Deadline to withdraw from any other high school credit course is April 22, 2022

Please reach out to your school counselor if you’re interested in having your student enroll in a middle-school equivalent course.

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Lively’s Gratefulness Chain

Each link in our chain states what each student, teacher, or staff member is grateful for. Thank you to all the Advisory classes that requested kits from the library and contributed to our display.

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Book Fair Coming Soon...

It’s Book Fair time!! If you would like to volunteer, to set up, take down, or work the book fair, please contact The PTSA is organizing volunteers. I will send your information to them.

When: Monday, December 6th - Friday, December 10th.

Hours for Dec. 6th - 10th: 7:45 am - 3:45 pm

Evening of Wonder Hours (Tues., Dec. 7): 5:30 - 7:30 pm

LASA Mentoring

Parents of LASA students will be in the library to help students with their applications to LASA. Here is the schedule:

Tuesday Mornings: 7:45 - 8:45 am

Wednesday Afternoons: 3:15 - 4:15 pm

Magic the Gathering Club

On Tuesdays from 3:45 - 5:15 pm, students are welcome to come to the library to play Magic the Gathering. Competitive and beginner players are welcome. You must follow the club procedures by signing up in the cafeteria and waiting for me to pick you up at 3:45 pm.

Our Library is a flexible space!

We provide space for smaller groups to meet in addition to class visits, community events.
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Food Free Fun!

Students enjoy coming to the library to play games, do origami, read, and visit.

Library Chromebook Help

Please return any Chromebooks borrowed from the library! Students should return borrowed Chromebooks every day.

Chromebooks: Borrow a charged Chromebook if you forgot yours. Issue a new one if your Chromebook cannot be fixed.

Chromebook Charging Station: If you forget your charger, we can charge it in the library and loan you a charged Chromebook.

Happy Reading,

Yvonne Steckel, Lively Librarian

athletic corner

Interested in playing on the girls soccer team? All 7th and 8th grade females are eligible! There will be an interest meeting in room 108 on Thursday, December 2nd, 2021, from 3:15-4:00 p.m. Students that want to tryout are not required to attend but are strongly encouraged to. Link to the event on our Facebook page:

Girls soccer tryouts will be held from Monday, December 13th to Friday, December 17th from 3:15 p.m.-5:15 p.m. Students will need to have a physical and their online forms completed before being able to tryout. Link to the event on our Facebook page:

Want to support your Lively staff from home? Consider purchasing items off teacher's and staff's wish lists!

Not all staff have wish lists currently, we are working on getting them for everyone.



Please consider donating what you can for the fall fundraiser this year! The first 50 donors will get a Lively Falcon yard sign. We are almost halfway to our $5,000 goal. Let's keep showing our school some love. If you can, please consider donating today.

Fuss Fundraiser

Click to fill out.

Thank You!

Thank you for your donations to the Staff and Teacher Appreciation fund. The PTSA was able to purchase holiday turkeys for all of our custodians this year.
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New Spirit Wear

New Spirit Wear items are here! Check out new items here. A new long sleeve shirt and restock of hoodies and shirts are coming in early December so make sure to check back then.

Spirit Wear items will be on sale at the Falcon Store Fridays during lunch in December. Students and staff can purchase items during lunch (cash or card) or order online and pickup during Evening of Wonder on December 7th (5:30 - 7:30 pm). Show your Falcon pride and grab some new gear!

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It's Not Too Late to Join PTSA!

We need your membership and your voice. PTSA membership and dues support your child by funding essential educational and curriculum needs; advocating on behalf of children and educators at the local, state and national levels; and building an inclusive school community for all families.

We invite you to join PTSA for your child because increasing our membership, by even one, makes it possible to provide important educational resources, speak up on important issues and create a stronger school community. There is no wrong or right way to be involved — anything you can give, whether it’s time or money, will support your child’s potential.


Click to join.

New PTSA Website

The PTSA has a new website! You can check it out at We'll be adding more to it this year. If you'd like to be part of the website team, please email Heather Roell at

Volunteers Needed!

Volunteers are needed on campus every day. First, you must have an approved background check.

Online background check form:

  • Click "volunteer" button
  • Make optional donation
  • If you have ever registered before you can log in to access your information
  • If you have not previously done this before you can create a new account
  • Enter or update your contact information
  • Agree to background check
  • You can sign up to be a volunteer at Lively or any other AISD school
  • Sign Volunteer Confidentiality Agreement
  • Look for "Success!" screen to show that everything has been submitted
  • You should receive results in 2-5

PTSA Google Calendar

Subscribe to the PTSA Google Calendar!

other information

With many AISD students living in food insecure households, access to healthy food may be challenging when the district is closed. Families can use the community resources below to find free meals in their area while AISD offices and schools are closed from Nov. 22-26:

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