Gattis Gossip

Volume 7, Issue 18 ----------------------------Jan. 19, 2015

Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud.-- Maya Angelou

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Kudos to you!!

Thank you to Mrs. Barker and the specials team for arranging to have Austin Jazz Works visit Gattis today. What a great opportunity for teachers and students!

Thank you ALL for engaging in such great professional discussions at our vertical team meetings this week! People are still talking about it and, more importantly, implementing strategies in the classroom!!

Upcoming Weeks At Gattis...

Jan. 19-23

Return to regular intervention schedule


MLK Holiday - No school for students or staff


  • LaWanda at AP Meeting
  • 8:55 PDAS (Lucas)
  • 10:30 PDAS (Lucas)
  • 1:10 PDAS (Lucas)
  • 3:05 Leadership Meeting
  • Author Visit - K-2
  • 8:55 Brief ARD
  • 9:00 PDAS (Carley)
  • 9:20 Brief ARD
  • 9:40 PDAS (Lucas)
  • 10:30 PDAS (Lucas)
  • 3:05 Team Meetings/Leadership Info


  • 8:20 PDAS (Carley)
  • 10:45 PDAS (Lucas)


  • SSTs 1,3,5
  • 11:00 Lucas at Council of PTA
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Coming up soon!

  • Jan. 6-30 MOY BAS window for 1st - 5th grade
  • Jan. 19 Martin Luther King Day/ School Holiday
  • Jan. 20 Leadership Meeting
  • Jan. 21 Author Visit - Don Tate (K,1,2)
  • Jan. 21 Faculty Meeting - Share leadership news with team
  • Jan 26-Feb. 20 MOY BAS window for Kinder
  • Jan. 27 TAG Parent Social
  • Jan. 29 Author Visit - Kate Klise (3,4,5)
  • Jan. 29 6:30-7:30 Science Fair
  • Jan. 30 Gattis Night at Chuck E. Cheese
  • Feb. 3 6 pm Parent meeting at RMS for parents of 5th graders
  • Feb. 4 RMS Counselor meets with triads in the library
  • Feb. 4 11:30-12:30RMS Brown Bag meeting at Gattis for parents of 5th graders
  • Feb. 4 Early Release - Professional Development
  • Feb. 9 100th day of school
  • Feb. 16 Staff Development
  • Feb. 16 TELPAS Writing collection window opens
  • Feb. 16 TELPAS Online Calibration window opens
  • Feb. 20 5th grade choice sheets due to teachers
  • Feb. 25 Technology PD 1/2 day with Angie
  • March 30 STAAR Writing 4th grade 1ay 1
  • March 31 STAAR Writing 4th grade day 1/ Reading 5th grade
  • April 20 STAAR Math 5th grade
  • April 21 STAAR Math 3rd and 4th grades
  • April 22 STAAR Reading 3rd and 4th grade
  • April 23 STAAR Science 5th grade
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Happy Birthday, January!!!

Jan. 4 Jami Johnson

Jan. 5 Corrina Valle

Jan. 10 Gina Thomas

Moving In Mid-Year

Adjusting to a new school mid year can be challenging. We have several new students here at Gattis since the winter break. Here are some ideas to help them feel welcome.

Double Dose: Nix the Tricks

MaryBeth shared some clips from Brian Stockus with specific teams that are relevant to their current units. It's so good, I think we ALL should hear it even though specific grade level TEKS are noted. The topic is teaching students to really think about the concept rather than relying on tips and tricks that don't always work.

Chapter 2


2.1 Nix: Total Means Add


Context matters. The phrase ‘in all’ means different

things in “Tina has 3 cookies, Chris has 5, how many cookies are there in

all?” and “Cookies come in bags of 15. If you buy 3 bags of cookies, how

many cookies do you have in all?” Students will lose their sense making

skills, and their belief that math makes sense, if the focus is on circling and

crossing out words.


Instead of teaching a few key words, ask students to think about all the words

and what is happening. Have students draw a model of the situation rather

than jumping directly to the computation. Kids are able to reason through

problems, especially in story problems where students have experiences they

can apply to the context. Encourage students to use their sense-making

skills (which they arrive to school with) both in figuring out the problem,

and in checking the reasonableness of their answer. As a bonus, students will

simultaneously develop their reading comprehension skills. Start with the

mantra “math makes sense” and never let kids believe anything else.

4.4 Nix: Obtuse Angles are Big


When students hear the words big or large they are thinking

about something taking up a large amount of space. So

students see small and large as describing the length of the

ray rather than the degree measure.


The definition of obtuse is “An angle with measure between 90 and 180

degrees.” When explaining this definition or describing angles use ‘wide angle’

not ‘large angle.’ Wide vs. narrow fits the hinge analogy of an angle and

focuses student attention on the space between the rays – the angle – rather

than the rays themselves. For students who have trouble understanding what

an angle is, shading in the region between two rays is a helpful way to make

an angle visible. Plus, this provides the opportunity to discuss that shading

in a small corner vs. a wide swath does not change the size of the original

angle. This part reminds me of the 'draw a triangle and color corners activity' in one of the lessons.

STAAR Information

TEA Changes Testing Date for Grade 5 STAAR Math

TEA has announced that it will move the testing date for the STAAR mathematics assessment for grade 5 from March 30, 2015, to April 20, 2015. The testing dates in other subject areas will remain unchanged.

Partners in Education

Please remember to use this link throughout the year to record any donors and partnerships. If you have guest speakers to your classroom or gradelevel, record the activity. Guest speakers would be recorded as partners rather than donors. Recording this information is an important piece of our accountability and allows our partners to be recognized for all they do for us.
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