The Cannon Connection

Staff Information & Updates 3/31/14

From The Principal's Pen...

Dr. Ryan's B.E.S.T. report from last week was a great reminder to all of us about the reality of this time of year, as he refers to as the "silly season". As he stated, "We know that, in the end, it's the relationships, the authentic learning, the engaging lessons, the safe bus ride to school, the nutritious meals, and the well-maintained facilities and grounds that really matter."

It is so evident from the learning that goes on every day at Cannon Elementary: A GCISD STEM School, that our staff understands that providing authentic, challenging learning opportunities, that require our scholars to truly "think" is the key to having our scholars prepared to be successful on state assessments. I'm confident that our kids are going to shine on STAAR!! Thank you to ALL for your help to prepare, encourage, and believe in our Cannon scholars!!

Anne Gets "Happy"!

Ever wonder what Anne does in that little testing "closet"? Check it out by clicking on this short video clip!

HUGE thanks to Anne for keeping us "happy" during STAAR season! We appreciate all of your hard work to make testing run so smoothly at Cannon!

Anne Gets "Happy" During Testing Season!



Thanks to all staff that have already started looking for ways to provide brain breaks in your classrooms, using GoNoodle! Research supports the use of brain breaks to help students remain alert and actively engaged in learning. Several Cannon teachers tweeted about using GoNoodle successfully with their scholars last week - way to go!! Be sure to include @gonoodle in your tweets, so that you can share how you are using this resource. Also, please note that the #GoNoodleMadness contest on Pinterest has been extended through this week. Details are below - check it out - you might be a "Final Four" winner!!


Have you joined in the #GoNoodleMadness on Pinterest? We’ve loved discovering all your favorite GoNoodle brain breaks by seeing your pins! For any late-comers, we are extending the Pinterest contest for one more week!

Just pin your favorite GoNoodle brain breaks with #GoNoodleMadness and @GoNoodlebreaks to win GoNoodle goodies for your classroom.

For the final week, we will be choosing “Final Four” winners to win the GoNoodle Madness pack including a GoNoodle basketball!

Dates to Remember

4/1 STAAR Math 5th; STAAR Writing -4th Day 1

4/2 STAAR Reading 5th; STAAR Writing -4th Day 2

4/3 Positive Proof @ Cannon

4/3 PTA Family Movie Night w/ In & Out Burger

4/4 PLC Week A Kinder;5th;2nd

4/5 Science Safari - Dallas Aquarium

4/8 4th Grade to GHS Ecology Center

4/8 U.CAN 3:00

4/9 5th Grade to GHS Ecology Center

4/10 Design Club "Big Reveal" Reception

4/11 PLC Week B 3rd;4th;1st

4/15 Reverse Evacuation Drill - 11:30

4/15 CEC 3:15

4/15 FLL Parent Information Night 6:00 pm

4/16 Special Olympics

4/18 PLC Week A- Kinder;5th;2nd

4/22 STAAR Math - 3rd & 4th grades

4/23 STAAR Reading - 3rd & 4th; STAAR Science - 5th

4/25 PLC Week B - 3rd; 4th;1st

4/29 UNT and Thailand guests to tour Cannon

4/29 STEM Leadership Team - 3:00

4/30 Lake Worth tours Cannon's 1:1 program

4/30 Fire Drill - 1:30

5/1 Dual Language Parent Information Night - CTMS Sac 6:30

5/1 GCISD Employee Retirement Celebration - PDEC

5/2 PLC Week A - Kinder; 5th; 2nd

5/3 GCISD Rachel's Challenge Rally

5/5 - 5/9 Kindergarten Registration

5/6 U.CAN 3:00

5/6 STEM Parent Information Night 6:30 - cafeteria

5/8 Cannon Family STEM Night 6:00

5/9 Field Day

5/12 EMT meeting - 3:00

5/13 CEC - 3:15

5/15 Fire Drill - 9:30

5/16 PLC Week B - 3rd, 4th, 1st

5/19 Cannon scholars present at School Board meeting

5/20 U.CAN 3:00

5/21 Early Release day K-5

5/22 Early Release day K-5

5/23 PLC Week A - Kinder;5th;2nd

5/23 GCISD Special Programs Lottery Day (Dual Lang; STEM)

5/23 Choir to NRH2O

5/26 Student Holiday

5/27 STEM Leadership meeting 3:00


The time has arrived for testing to begin! It is important for ALL grade level teachers to review the information in Anne's recent STAAR Testing newsletter, in order to ensure that we provide the very best testing environment for our Cannon Cubs on test dates. Click here to access Anne's Soaring With The STAAR newsletter

HUGE thanks to all staff for their hard work to prepare our scholars to be successful on the STAAR!! Our testing grade level teachers & support staff have devoted LOTS of time and energy to make sure the kids are ready, but the work of our PK-2 teachers to help build a strong foundation for learning is also critical to their success on these assessments.

Our Cannon Cubs are going to SOAR on the STAAR!! Good luck!!

Check Out This Fun STAAR Video - Frozen Parody

Frozen Parody for STAAR


  • STUDENT PLANS FOR NEXT YEAR FORMS- A form will be going home with all scholars this week to help us determine returning student enrollment numbers for the 2014-2015 school year. In order for us to make projections for the number of open spots in each grade level for the upcoming lottery, as well as for staffing purposes, it is very important for ALL scholars to return this form asap. Please consider providing some sort of meaningful incentive for your students to encourage them to return this form asap. Offering a few extra minutes at recess or some "free time" to engage in a fun design challenge can go a long ways when used as an incentive in class! As an extra incentive for teachers, all teachers that have returned all forms to Robin by April 7th will receive a Jeans Pass!! :)

  • RACHEL'S CHALLENGE INFO - Mandy provided information in a recent email to staff about the upcoming RC rally on May 3rd, with the theme "Accept the Challenge!" Please be sure to include all of this information about the rally and how to purchase T-shirts in your communications with parents. This year's rally will be held at the district stadium from 9:15-10:15, following a 5K Fun Run from 8:00-9:00. We hope to have approximately 30-50 Cannon scholars represent Cannon this year to participate in the rally festivities! We will need adult volunteers to attend as well, so please let Mandy know if you are available and interested in participating!

  • LEADERSHIP OPPORTUNITY - The district is preparing a job description to be released soon for teacher leaders to consider. The position will be called LPAC Team Leader and it will begin during the 2014-2015 school year. The primary duties of this position will be to act as a campus liaison between Cannon & the Department of World Languages; recruit LPAC parent rep. for ESL/Bilingual programs; schedule & coordinate LPAC meetings with campus admin., LPAC parent rep. and teachers; and to ensure that state & federal guidelines are met with regard to ELL's. All LPAC Team Leaders will be required to have an ESL Certification and attend an August training, as well as quarterly (minimum) meetings/professional development sessions. There will be a stipend associated with this position. If you have interest in submitting your name to be considered for this position, please let Tona know.


Below are some upcoming opportunities for professional development sessions with a technology focus. Our campus budget deadlines are quickly approaching and while there is not a lot of money available to fund PD, there may be some available. Contact Tona ASAP is you have interest in attending any of the following. Note that the Denton and Northwest ISD opportunities are local and fairly affordable!! :)

TCEA Tots & Technology June 15-17 $199 or $159 (TCEA members) After 3/31 $214 or $174

iPadpaloozaJune 17-19 $295 After 5/1 $345

Lone Star TIA (Denton ISD) keynote speaker Alan November July 22-23 $30

Technopalooza (Northwest ISD) July 30-31​$100


No time to follow tweets from staff this week? Check them out here! Great job tweeting about the great things going on at Cannon! Keep up the good work!

Laura Green ‏@LauraGreen2014 Mar 28

Learning about mountain gorillas! @subialuvina @pyroneanne @cancubs

Anne Pyron ‏@pyron_anne Mar 27

No PUSHing required as 4th grade scholars were PULLed into a PBL design challenge today. May the FORCE be with you! @cancubs @Jvorachard

Julee Vorachard ‏@Jvorachard Mar 28

. @pyron_anne I just hope they understand the GRAVITY of the challenge! Let's plan to encourage FRICTION with every team!;) #teacherfun

Riqui Villarreal ‏@CannonCoachV Mar 26

Cannon RoadRunners ROCKING the fitness stations!! #cancubs #PhysEd

Luvina Subia ‏@SubiaLuvina Mar 27

@cancubs @LauraGreen2014

KDavidenko ‏@KarenDavidenko Mar 26

How do you build a Lego tower twice your height, by yourself? Critical thinking, of course! @Tonataylor @cancubs

Gail Marin ‏@gail_marin Mar 26

Took a brain break today! #happy @cancubs @Tonataylor @aricci1

Cannon Fifth ‏@CannonFifth Mar 26

Yesterday was @Cannonreads Library day!! Ask your children about the life-changing books they checked out!! @cancubs #gcisdhumanities

Trisha Goins ‏@heartinlife Mar 25

Student while using interactive virtual investigation, "This is actually pretty fun!" Thanks @riceSTEMscopes! #gcisd #cancubs

Deena Crawford ‏@MrsCrawfordSSS Mar 25

Rock,Paper,Scissors competition 2 see who can get Mrs. Berumen's favorite book! These kids are #bookaddicts @cancubs

TBlizzard ‏@Tonataylor Mar 24

Cannon students planted the promise to stay drug free! The tulips are blooming!! @cancubs

Tina Berumen ‏@tinaberumen Mar 24

Third grade @cancubs checking out the @Cannonreads Engineering #makerspaces this morning! @Tonataylor #gcisdlib

Deena Crawford ‏@MrsCrawfordSSS Mar 27

Our daily book talk!! Discussing what we're reading @cancubs #gcisdhumanities

Heather Hagar ‏@Stemscience4u Mar 24

I just updated my Weebly website. via @weebly

eJucomm ‏@ejucomm Mar 23

Ejucomm would like to welcome @gcisd Grapevine-Colleyville's Cannon Elementary to our appy family!

Julee Vorachard ‏@Jvorachard Mar 23

Strategies to Reach Every Student, Regardless of Language Barrier | MindShift … via @MindShiftKQED

Julee Vorachard ‏@Jvorachard Mar 23

Teaching Students to Embrace Mistakes via @edutopia

Gail Marin ‏@gail_marin Mar 24

Working hard on their research for their U.S. Symbols project! @Tonataylor @aricci1 #cannoncubs

Michelle Hall ‏@Michelleh340 Mar 28

Collaborating to create our own t-shirt factory. Love Young Mathematicians Series!

Michelle Hall ‏@Michelleh340 Mar 23

"The Importance of Failure" good read

Diane Norwood ‏@MsDianeNorwood Mar 24

Tried Zondle? Your content put in games kids choose. Elem. kids love it! Ss play as practice or Ts set as form. assess. @jonathanwylie

Nearpod ‏@nearpod Mar 26

@JemInigo is a big winner :) We'll upgrade your account to Gold Edition for 1 yr, stay tuned! #bestnearpodpic

Denise Skinner ‏@DeniseSki Protected Tweets Mar 24

Fifth Grade creating food chains!! @cancubs @Stemscience4u

KDavidenko ‏@KarenDavidenko Mar 29

A cool idea to mark students' plants in the gardens! @Tonataylor @cancubs

KDavidenko ‏@KarenDavidenko Mar 29

Design club kids work independently to produce their own projects! @Tonataylor @cancubs

KDavidenko ‏@KarenDavidenko Mar 25

Pondering STEM/SPED: … @Tonataylor @cancubs @SubiaLuvina

Luvina Subia ‏@SubiaLuvina Mar 28

We saw this bee pollinating today. We used it as a great teaching moment @cancubs @LauraGreen2014 #signsofspring

Luvina Subia ‏@SubiaLuvina Mar 27


Judy Hockenbrough ‏@JHockenbrough Mar 25

Learning about Genres is more fun when the design challenge is to build Repunzel's tower! #cancubs @tonataylor

Denisa Marshall ‏@denisamarshall Mar 26

Sorting by color today, by shape tomorrow! @cancubs @Tonataylor

juliebrenegan ‏@molliemae57 Mar 21

3rd grade engineers explore Maker Stations. @Tonataylor @cancubs @tinaberumen

Salena Duncan ‏@cancubduncan Mar 28

Third grade learning about Forces of Nature!! @cancubs @melanie_place @cancubs @Tonataylor


  • Set a timer and turn in attendance by 9:45-10:15 daily.
  • Read Anne's Soaring With the STAAR newsletter for important reminders!
  • Make sure ALL scholars have the Cannon app on their iPads. Push notification reminders will begin this week!
  • Send home Student Plans for Next Year forms. Collect all by 4/7 for Jeans Passes!
  • Help promote Rachel's Challenge information & t-shirt sales in your communications!
  • Weigh-in for the staff S.T.E.M. Challenge with Nurse Kendra!
  • Let Tona know if you would like to be considered for the LPAC Team Leader position
  • Tweet throughout the week to share the great work going on @ Cannon!