Husky Hotline

Sycamore Elementary School

September 28, 2015

Crystal Cooper Thompson, Principal

Aesop Reminders

When you submit a request in Aesop:

  • Please remember to post In/Service-Staff Development when requesting for a staff development day off. Assure that you have gotten clearance to attend from Crystal first so that payment for subs can come from the proper line item.

  • Click “save” and the Aesop system will locate a sub for you.
  • Click “save and assign” when you have already spoken to the sub and you know for certain that he/she will be in your class.

Please remember to update the time in Aesop. A full day is 7:45-3:45, half day is either 7:45-11:45 or 11:45-3:45.

In This Issue



School Affairs

Crystal's Corner

Bookeeper Notes

Dance North


New Duty Schedule

Teacher Spotlight of the Week!


Belkis Puga 10/1

Larry Smith 10/5

Kelli Reifler 10/8

Sharon Pardue 10/12

Jill Moore 10/12

Naisha Lyons 10/16

Rochelle Spurlock 10/22

Terri Stokes 10/23

Janet Rivera 10/24

Shannon Davis 10/27

Mandy Squires 10/31

Selena Ruth 10/31

Staff Calendar-To be updated

School Affairs

School Reminders:

1. Please lock up all devices at night and lock your classroom doors when leaving for specials, lunch and recess. Students need to bring everything with them and not come to the classrooms unattended as much as possible. 2 barriers are suggested, however 1 barrier will suffice.

2. Please have students assist with putting chairs on desks when leaving each day.With us eating breakfast and snacks in the classrooms, it causes for more attention to vacuuming. Please help us get your rooms as clean as possible.

New & Updated Resources on the SOCC

The Science Online Communication Center (SOCC) is being updated with new resources for teachers. These resources include revised resource calendars that align district resources with the instructional calendar, revised STEM lessons for Specials, and newly developed "I Can" videos, which are 5 minute screen captures in which GCPS teachers are deconstructing the AKS and explaining the learning expectations for students. Resources will be added to the SOCC all year to support rigorous and engaging instruction.

Georgia Science Standards Revision
The Georgia Department of Education as initiated the process of reviewing and revising Georgia's science standards. The GCPS Science Office welcomes this news, and we plan to make every effort to ensure that the state process reflects extensive input from GCPS stakeholders and is grounded in effective science education research. Once the state revises the standards, we will review and revise the AKS as necessary.

New Department of Water Resources Videos
The Gwinnett County Department of Water Resources has partnered with Gwinnett County public schools to produce several videos to support instruction on the AKS connected to water and the water cycle (4th and 6th grade primarily). These videos are engaging and valuable resources for teachers and students. Teachers can access the videos by visiting and scrolling down to the “Watch Water Science with Wade” photo-link. There is no fee, but teachers will be prompted to enter their name and email address.

September 2015 “Come and GET It” Guiding Educators Today

Hello Sycamore Staff!

Below you will find professional development opportunities offered to you by some great colleagues! We plan to offer some “GET It” sessions every month! If you are interested in leading a session, please contact Jill Moore to discuss your ideas! We hope that you will take the opportunity to learn from each other to help our students achieve!!

Go to to book a time for me to model lessons, help with a small group, provide assistance during PBIL or STEM, basically anyway I can be of assistant to YOU! J This is a great place to find an open time without us playing email tag!

Gifted Cluster Teachers:

An email has been sent regarding your Gifted Cluster Differentiated Plan. It needs to be completed (only pages 1 and 2 at this time).

This is required documentation.

I have also provided Ms. Walston's from last year as an example of what is expected. Please complete and return to Jill Moore by Monday, October 5th.

If you need assistance completing, please book me at so that we can work on it together! Thanks!

PLC on Tuesday:

WHAT: Our PLC focus will be Formative Instructional Practices- Part A of Clear Learning Targets.

WHERE: Due to the retrofit…please plan to attend our PLC in the Leadership Lab (upstairs) during your specials.

WHEN: During your planning! Please be on time, we have a lot to cover!

Support Teachers, Special Ed Teachers and Specials Teachers; please plan to attend at 7:45 AM.

Come and GET It Session this Week:

Go Public with Multi-Media Projects

Ms. Carlan will share how your students can use Movie Maker and PowerPoint in tandem to make multi-media presentations. Please plan to bring your charged laptops.

Sign up at

Crystal's Corner


Thank you for an incredible week. I appreciate you for working so hard during conferences while assuring that your student's didn't miss a beat. With CogAT testing, conferences and Literacy Palooza, we had a very busy week!

Congratulations to Claire, Kimberly, Jill, all of our teachers and staff and the Literacy committee for all of their hard work on the Literacy Palooza. It is awesome to see all of the hard work that you all put in and how much of a positive impact it made for our students and families. Please place all of your posters outside of your classroom if you can.

This coming month will be filled as well with ITBS, Field Days and various events. We are Sycamore and we do it all! Thank you for being a wonderful staff!

Congratulations to Deepa, Angie and Frank who did an exceptional job with our September instructional roundss. Dr. Anderson was very impressed with our work. One of our goals as a school is to improve our eCLASS use. We are lagging behind the district and I know we can improve with support and all of the new technology from our Retrofit. Please look for some weekly points in our Hotline of ways your colleagues in the school and district are staying at or above expectations.

Thank you to each and every one of you for being positive, supportive and willing to work as a team. I am enjoying you all!

Essential Updates:

  • Retrofit is underway! Thank you for your patience. Continue to look for information from Larry and Jerry about essentials.

Monies Collected Tips from the Bookkeeper

As you begin planning Field Trips, Club activities, etc., and start collecting money for these activities, I thought it would be helpful to send out some reminders and tips regarding money collections. I’ve included the most common errors that come across my desk, therefore I hope this will be helpful in saving everyone the precious commodity of time.

Forms of Payment

We accept cash, checks made payable to Sycamore Elementary, and credit/debit card payments through MyPaymentsPlus.

If you choose to use MyPaymentsPlus as a method, please let me know ahead of time to set up an “Activity” in MyPaymentsPlus in order for you to collect payments through this resource. I recommend this, because it is less paperwork for the both of us. I can set it up so that you receive an email when someone has paid, and also send you a list of who has paid on a weekly basis when I receive my deposit information. This will keep you informed as to who has paid.

Report of Monies Collected Forms

If you receive cash and/or checks for payments please use the Report of Monies Collected Standard Form found on the shared drive. The path is Sycamore > Teacher Information > Monies Collected Forms > RMC Form Standard. I strongly recommend saving the form to your computer once you fill it out, in case any corrections need to be made later, they can be fixed quickly. However, please use handwritten ink to sign and date the bottom of the form.

Please leave the “Account to Credit Line” BLANK. This is for Bookkeeper and Auditor’s purposes only. You will enter Grade Level and Purpose on the “Reason for Collecting Money Line”.

There must not be more than 1 week between the Date Collections Begin (at the top), and the Date of Your Signature (at the bottom, the date you turn your form into me).

Click here to view an Example Report of Moneys Collected Standard Form.


If you collected cash from a student, and it is $10.01 or more, you must issue them a receipt. You may check out a receipt book from me.

No receipts have to be issued for checks received for any amount, because the check itself acts as their receipt. If however, a person requests a receipt for a check, you may do so upon their request.

Thank you for your help with all of the paperwork. As always, please come see me for any questions. I will be more than glad to help!

Jenifer Reese


Dance North

Dear Principals and Teachers,

Dance North wants to become a part of your classroom to help share the value of the Arts!

I want to send you a personal invitation to attend a special school day performance of Dance North's production The Nutcracker All Jazzed Up, Thursday November 19, 2015. Performances will begin at 10:00am and 11:30am on each day at North Gwinnett H.S. Tickets are $2.00 for students and chaperones, teachers are free.

The high school students perform for over 1500 elementary students each year in effort to bring the magic of dance alive for their audience. Your students will get to experience what it is like to come to the theater and witness the magic of the stage. The excitement for the production to start will only heighten their interest. Yet, when the curtain opens, the array of dancers on the stage in costumes and make-up will cause them to gasp with amazement. Just watching their eyes brighten and sparkle with astonishment will make the effort worth the trip. For one hour the students will experience that movement, accompanied by thematic music, can tell a story. They will be empathetic to the strengths and energy of the dancers and have many ideas and feelings to share with you afterwards. After the show, the dancers will help escort you to your buses and chat with some of your students about what it is like to be a dancer.

This performance has been performed for and well received by Gwinnett County Schools since 2006 and we look forward to yet another successful year. The production is based on the traditional Nutcracker story, but features the jazz music of Duke Ellington and Glen Miller. Lesson plans and activities that correlate to GCPS' AKS are included with your reservation to help increase the educational experience of this production.

This is a fantastic opportunity for you to share with your students. This show will sell out quickly, so make your reservations very soon.

To make reservations, email In the past reservations have sold out very quickly, so be sure complete your reservation promptly.

Reyna O'Leary, Director Of Dance


Kudos to Claire for doing F&P assessments for me and helping me get ready for conferences. I really appreciate all your help. ~ Deepa

Kudos to Ms. Hardy for a wonderful session on creating and managing play lists on You Tube last week. I learned a lot. ~ Deepa

Double Kudos to Mandy Gunter for helping in my AC Science class so I could take a small group outside to video tape and for covering my bus duty during Thursday dismissal. Your willingness to help out is appreciated. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to Michelle Hardy for the site to convert YouTube videos to and MP4 format. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to Ashley, Amy and Deborah for allowing my students to work on science projects and engage in science activities in your classroom when I was unable to meet with the for the early release schedule. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to Janet for getting our AC classes in the grade books. ~ Beverly Carlan

Kudos to Jenifer & Crystal for helping me get robotics in house for use with our students. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to the Kindergarten Team for your awesome efforts and amazing collaboration on the Baby Bear's Chair STEM lesson. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to the First Grade and Kindergarten teams for your flexibility in using the Innovation Lab for STEM specials. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to our custodial team for adjusting my tables and chairs to provide a safer working environment for our K-1 students during STEM. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to Larry and Jerry for addressing the infinite number of technology tickets I have and will submit. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thank you to the admin team for providing planning time (and time to catch up on overdue kudos) for specials during early release. ~ Beverly Carlan

Thanks to Paige Turner for sharing materials with me. ~ Lee Goodwin

Counselor's Corner

Check Out Our New Attendance Program!

Are You Winning Paws For Attendance?

  • Students with PERFECT ATTENDANCE for each month will be recognized by:
  • Posting a group picture on our wall of fame
  • Given a token of appreciation with a certificate

  • Students with PERFECT ATTENDANCE for each quarter will be recognized by:
  • Recognition at the 9 Week Awards Ceremony
  • Their name put in a drawing each 9 week for a grand prize Pre K-2 & 3-5 (Recognized on the announcements)
  • Students with PERFECT ATTENDANCE for each semester will be recognized by:
  • 1st and 2nd Semester Pizza Party for Perfect Attendance Students
  • Student with All Year PERFECT ATTENDANCE:
  • Get a Perfect Attendance Fun Picnic with Ms. Moody and the A-Team on the playground
  • Recognition Award/Certificate
  • 5th Grader with Perfect Attendance K-5
  • Special recognition at the EOY Awards Ceremony
  • Grade level with Highest Percentage of Perfect Each Month will be recognized by:
  • Post pictures of each grade level perfect attendees
  • Recognition of winning grade on announcements
  • Post grade levels’ perfect attendance percentage each month
  • Winning grade level Pre K-2 & 3-5 gets a Trophy and a certificate