ARMS Legend

Excellence Without Boundaries

BE LEGENDARY. Every Minute of Every Moment Counts!

March 16, 2015 5th Six Weeks, Week 3

BY MAY 2015, AT LEAST 80% OF ALL STAAR EXAMS TAKEN BY ARMS STUDENTS WILL MEET THE PHASE II PASSING STANDARD.

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ARMS LEGEND SHOUT OUTS!

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ARMS Rangers March Birthdays!

  • J. Yates( 29th)
  • H. Conley (30th)

Instructional Focus

Make the most of every instructional minute. Ask yourself:

  • How am I planned from the moment students enter to the moment I dismiss?
  • How are the alignment of the LO, DOL, and instructional activities, designed to maximize instructional time?
  • How are the questions I ask, capitalizing on student knowledge and connect students more deeply to the content?
  • How is student performance data shaping how we spend our time? (Checks for Understanding, DOLs, Quizzes, Writing conferences, etc).

ARMS EXPECTATIONS OF EXCELLENCE

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People first. This can be a stressful time of year. Please always keep this in the forefront of all that we do with one another and with how we model for our students every day, day in day out.

SATURDAY TUTORING - March 21st

READING 6th - 8th
MATH - 6TH - 8TH
Alg. I

UPDATED INSTRUCTIONAL CALENDAR

Updated ARMS Instructional calendar is on the ARMS Website.
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Pertinent campus wide WAIP information will be posted in the weekly ARMS Legend. Please ensure that you stay informed of district updates and general information. WAIP information that is specific to a team, grade, content, will be emailed directly.

Stars On the Rise Employee Giving Campaign Kick Off

ARMS needs a staff representative. Please click here for more information and email the staff if you would like to be the ARMS contact.

Nomination for Employee of the Year for Health Services

Click here for more information on how to nominate an ARMS staff member.

Marshall Memo - Weekly Round-UP of Educational Ideas, K-12

Four Steps to Cultural Competence

“All people are shaped by the culture in which they live,” say Hilary Dack and Carol Ann Tomlinson (University of Virginia) in this Educational Leadership article. “The shaping process is both subtle and pervasive, and it can be difficult for all of us to grasp that people shaped by other cultures will see and respond to the world differently than we do.” As a result, it’s easy for educators to interpret unfamiliar student behaviors as expressions of disinterest, deficiency, disrespect, or defiance. Dack and Tomlinson suggest four ways to become better attuned to differences so all students flourish:

Recognize and appreciate cultural variance. Good teachers have always been “students of their students,” say the authors; now it’s important to be students of their cultures, “attuned to their languages, appreciating their experiences and histories, and valuing their lenses on the world.” This might include joining students at concerts, plays, movies, and other events reflecting a diverse array of cultures.

Tune in to culturally influenced learning patterns. Some students’ backgrounds are collectivist while others are more individualistic, say Dack and Tomlinson: “Some will have learned to revere their teachers from a distance, others to negotiate with their teachers as they would with a peer, and still others that they owe their teachers no respect until it’s earned… Each new layer of understanding provides a platform for creating a classroom in which all comers can feel at home.” Here are a few other cultural continuum's on which individual students are arrayed:

- Needs to observe <---> Needs to test ideas

- Needs external structures <---> Creates own structures

- Competitive <---> Collaborative

- Conforming <---> Creative

- Reserved <---> Expressive

- Fixed sense of time <---> Flexible sense of time

- Information-driven <---> Feeling-driven

A teacher noticed that several students were uncomfortable responding to quick-response questions and on-the-spot writing prompts. Advised by a colleague that these students had been taught to value reflection over speed, and to listen and reflect before speaking, the teacher made two adjustments: first, she gave advance warning of an upcoming question by saying, “I want to hear from a couple of additional students on this topic. Then I’m going to ask for your thinking.” Second, early in a lesson she said, “As we conclude our lesson today, I’m going to ask you to summarize your understandings in writing.” These minor tweaks made a noticeable difference to the comfort and performance of formerly reticent students – and not just those the teacher originally had in mind.

Look beyond cultural patterns to see individuals. Although there are learning-style patterns within cultures, there are plenty of individual differences. Students who appear to be part of a homogenous group can vary tremendously because of differences in gender, school experience, parental support, time in the U.S., and personal temperament. “True cultural sensitivity requires person sensitivity as well,” say Dack and Tomlinson.

Plan inviting curriculum and instruction. This means teaching history, literature, music, language, and contemporary issues in ways that make as many connections as possible to students’ varied cultures and experiences. “In other words, the curriculum leads students to explore content through universal lenses rather than only parochial ones,” say the authors. “A teacher who looks at students as individuals – no matter what their cultural experiences are – will attend to their varied points of readiness, their interests, their exceptionalities, their status among peers, and so on when planning curriculum and instruction.” And from a pedagogical perspective, it’s wise to try to hit as many points on the continuums listed above as possible, either in unit and lesson plans or the choices students are able to make.

For example, in preparing students for a challenging assessment, a teacher might give two options: a quiz bowl, in which students compete in teams to answer sets of questions, or a tag team, in which students collaborate in groups to propose answers to the same questions, explain their thinking, and ask one another for elaborations to clarify their thinking.


Dack and Tomlinson close by quoting John Hattie on the characteristics of classrooms that invite students to learn:

- Respect – Every student is valuable, able, and responsible.

- Trust – Each student contributes to the learning process.

- Optimism – Each student has the potential to be successful.

- Intentionality – Every step of a lesson invites each student to learn.

“Inviting All Students to Learn” by Hilary Dack and Carol Ann Tomlinson in Educational Leadership, March 2015 (Vol. 72, #6, p. 10-15), available for purchase at http://bit.ly/17KV7mq; the authors can be reached at hgd3gf@virginia.edu and cat3y@virginia.edu.

WEEKLY EVENTS (3/16-20)

ARMS UNIVERSITY - TUESDAY, MARCH 17TH CANCELLED

STAFF MEETING - TUESDAY, MARCH 17TH @ 4:30 IN LIBRARY

ADVISORY - WEDNESDAY, MARCH 18TH

COFFEE WITH PRINCIPAL & PARENT WORKSHOP - WEDNESDAY @ 8:15 - 10:00 IN LIBRARY

SBDM MEETING - THURSDAY, MARCH 19TH @ 5:00 - 6:00 PM, IN LIBRARY

Reset Parent Meeting with Ms. Taylor - I will hold meetings with parents / guardians by grade level Tuesday - Thursday evenings. Students have been identified by each grade level and parents have received invitations. The desired outcomes are for parents / guardians to have a deeper and clearer awareness of the impact, consequences, and rewards of students' attendance and discipline actions.

ON THE HORIZON


ARMS STAFF BREAKFAST - TUESDAY, MARCH 24TH, HOSTED BY 6TH GRADE, 7:45 AM IN TEACHERS LOUNGE

ADVISORY CANCELLED - WEDNESDAY, MARCH 25TH

RANGER COALITION DAY
- THURSDAY, MARCH 26TH

IGNITE ACADEMY -THURSDAY, MARCH 26TH ARMS TEACHER PRESENTATIONS! LOCATION TBD, @ 4:30 PM

SPRING DANCE - FRIDAY, MARCH 27TH, STUDENT DANCE 6-8 PM. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN CHAPERONING PLEASE SEE MS. GOLLEDGE OR MR. FOLKENROTH

7TH GRADE STAAR WRITING DAY 1, MONDAY, MARCH 30TH
7TH GRADE STAAR WRITING DAY 2, TUESDAY, MARCH 31ST
8TH GRADE STAAR READING, TUESDAY, MARCH 31ST

Fun & Frolic

ARMS Good News

We serve a critical time in our students lives! Always remember how valuable you are!

Ann Richards Middle School

At Ann Richards MS, our vision is to be a flagship middle school at the hub of the community, nurturing diverse leaders, and empowering intelligent trailblazers.