Hillcrest STEAM Academy Newsletter

December 2019

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A Note from the Office...

It is hard to believe December is here and we are closing out 2019. It has been a tremendous year at Hillcrest STEAM Academy. We have a lot to celebrate:

1.) Our families truly value education, and this is evident in our attendance rates at Hillcrest STEAM Academy. You truly realize each minute of each day is valuable, and we appreciate that! Our attendance continues to be outstanding, and we aim to continue that each year.

2.) Family involvement also continues to exceed expectations. We welcome hundreds of families throughout the year for a variety of events, including family nights, a highly involved PTA, WatchDOGS, and so much more! Thank you for supporting Hillcrest STEAM Academy.

We are fortunate to have a wonderful family here at STEAM, and are glad you are a part of it!

-Hillcrest STEAM Academy Staff

Engineering Design Process

The Engineering Design Process is utilized at Hillcrest STEAM Academy. Students spend a lot of time planning, organizing, and researching various topics before they even begin constructing a project.

Check out this article, from TeachEngineering, which talks about the engineering design process.


As you can see, students spend a lot of time identifying needs, researching problems, developing possible solutions, and selecting a promising solution. This all takes quite a bit of time. Oftentimes, the students go through “productive struggle” and have to go back to the drawing board. This helps to build resiliency amongst all students.

Contact your child’s teacher for more information about engineering projects specific to each grade level.

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Changing Seasons

As the weather is changing quickly, please remember to send your child to school in a coat, hat, and gloves. Students will have outdoor recess as long as the wind chill is above 20 degrees. The students will not be allowed to stay in during colder temperatures unless there is a note from the doctor specifying that your child cannot go outside for recess due to medical reasons. We want to help every student stay healthy, and wearing a coat is an easy way to accomplish this. We will not take the students outside if there is thunder, lightening, or heavy precipitation.

Please remember that if your child is sick to notify the office. You can email us at hillcrest@bsd124.org or call the school at (816) 348-1130. Our office hours are from 8:40-4:40. You can call outside of those hours and leave a voicemail to notify us of your child’s absence.

Conscious Discipline

Check out this video about Conscious Discipline. We use Conscious Discipline at Hillcrest STEAM Academy to help students learn how to handle all types of emotions. Although the video is 20 minutes, it is very beneficial to learn about the different skills.

Parent Cliff Notes for the Skills of Conscious Discipline

Pajama Days

Each Monday in December, we will have a Pajama Day. If students pay $1 each Monday, they can wear pajamas. The money will be collected by our NEHS.

PTA Meeting

Thursday, Dec. 5th, 5:30-6:30pm

Hillcrest STEAM Academy

We will meet in the library.

Winter Parties

Friday, Dec. 20th, 9am

Hillcrest STEAM Academy

Holiday Parties will take place in the gym during regularly scheduled Specials times:

9:25-10:10 - 3rd Grade

10:15-11:00 - 4th Grade

11:05 - 11:50 - 5th Grade

11:55-12:40 - 6th Grade


1:05-1:50 - Kindergarten

1:55-2:40 - 1st Grade

2:45-3:30- 2nd Grade

Important Dates in December


5 - PTA Meeting @ 5:30pm

20 - Winter Parties

21 - January 6 - No School

Our Mission

The mission of Hillcrest STEAM Academy, a leader of STEAM innovation, is to ensure that all students flourish as individuals of character and advocates of their for own learning through the school community distinguished by

  • a culture of independence and collaboration

  • a global outlook based on a foundation of character

  • a focus on problem solving and critical thinking

  • real world experiences with integration throughout all subjects.