HGHS Instructional Update

January 4, 2016

Welcome to 2016!

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The Alabama Virtual Library--Something for All Courses and Students

Today you'll find some Alabama Virtual Library (AVL) information in your mailbox--an AVL brochure to read, a flyer to post, a library card application to copy for your students, and a sticker (for whatever needs a sticker?) Explore the Alabama Virtual Library for yourself! Alabama Virtual Library: Connecting You to a World of Knowledge.


Send me a message or visit C206 so we can plan how you can use AVL in your class. I can also come to your class and help guide students as they use the resources. Reach out! sdecarlo@madison.k12.al.us


Here's a taste of what's available. . .


Skills Practice and Test Prep

Create an account with a Huntsville-Madison County Public Library card and have access to skills practice (math, English, science, social studies, logic/reasoning) and practice tests (including ACT and AP!).



Literacy Standards for Everyone!

The Literacy Standards for History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects can be more approachable for you and your students if we use the Alabama Virtual Library.

The "Research to Build and Present Knowledge" section of the literacy standards includes the following:



  • Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
  • Draw evidence from literary or informational text to support analysis, reflection, and research.


The Alabama Virtual Library provides free databases--here's a list of their current resources. AVL Resource List

Goal Setting with Students on Thursday, January 7

This Thursday, January 7, plan to update the Goal Setting folders with the students in your 4th period class (and students in your 2nd period class who go to the CTE in the afternoon). It's important to do this on the day students receive their report cards and have the information available.


Remember, this process is only as effective as we make it. If we consistently attach importance to the practice of self-monitoring, reflection, and goal setting, students will respond.



  • Record of Course Grades--update 1st semester class grades: Q2 Average, Final Grade, Absences, Disciple Referrals
  • Assessment Record--some students can update EOC, STAR, or ACT scores
  • Reflection and Goal Setting 2015-2016: 1st semester--Q2 End, "What I've done well so far" and "My goals"
  • Defining Long-Range Goals--Revisit the 2015-2016 side. Encourage them to think, add, or delete!

Use a Golden Apple to bring FISH! principles to life

In Greek mythology, the Golden Apple awarded in Troy to "the fairest" caused discord among the people. But there was only one apple and many who wanted it. . . .


However, in OUR Trojan Nation we have an infinite number of Golden Apples for "the fairest" --and the results will be entirely different. All we have to do is be AWARE of two things:


  • People who make our lives a little better
  • How we can make the lives of others a little better



One of the principles of the FISH! philosophy is "Choose Your Attitude," and we know it's sometimes a challenge to choose a positive attitude every day.


With the help of our friends and fellow faculty members, though, we can invest in the attitudes of others by "Making Their Day" as well (yes, that's another FISH! principle).


When someone "Makes Your Day" with their words or actions, come to C206 and complete a "Golden Apple" for our tree. Our goal is to recognize those who invest in us and to fill this tree with Golden Apples!

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