Ram Nation News

Week of November 18, 2019

Vision

A middle school that cultivates scholars to be catalysts of change, life-long learners, innovators, and competitors in a global society
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#EXCELLENCE, Back At It Again

I continue to be thankful for your unwavering commitment and support to our kids. I am thankful that you continue to choose to be a part of our team making a difference in the lives of our kids. As we continue our journey to excellence, I am thankful because you exemplify one of our core values - Growth Mindset.

The power of the mind is amazing!!! In her book Mindset, Carol Dweck, talks about "effort creates ability." These are 3 key words that can do great things for our kids.

  • Our students need to know that they can reach high academic levels and the importance for doing so. If you can psych them into believing that they can reach greatness, then they will definitely live up to your expectations. Many times, it is harder for teachers to believe in students’ potentials than students believing in themselves. Even if you do not believe in the student, pretend to believe at least long enough until the student will make a true believer out of you.
  • If a student knows that the teacher is in charge, the teacher will have a greater influence over the student. Always take control and command of your students’ decisions, so you can guide their destiny to a great extent. Students know who cares for them by one’s authority and persistence for them to learn.

Attendance

Regular attendance is essential to providing students with opportunities to learn. It is awesome to see all of our students being on time to school and transitioning in an expedited manner from class to class. The following is the percent for attendance for the week of 11/11 - 11/15:


  • 6th Grade - 93.26%
  • 7th Grade - 95.31%
  • 8th Grade - 96.46%


Way to go 8th grade team taking the lead for two weeks in a row!!!

Let's continue to encourage our students to be present and on time on a daily basis. It really makes a huge difference when our students are present learning

Thank You

  • Ms. Winton, Mr. Alarcon, and Mr. Salazar for their leadership and dedication as they led our soccer teams during the Saturday games. Our girls came out victorious 3-2 against Marsh MS. Our students continue to work hard and grow as a team.
  • Ms. Rendon for her leadership and support during our Cahn Fellows Call Summit in Armonk, NY. She actively participated in the sessions, had an opportunity to network with other school leaders across the country, and represented our school very well.

College Going Culture

We want to provide our students opportunities to explore the various options they have as they transition to high school as well as providing them with a college going culture. I want to shout out Ms. Woods for her leadership and coordination for our students to visit North Dallas HS to learn the various opportunities available, know more about the collegiate academy, understand the importance of selecting a pathway of interest, and engage in Q & A with students, teachers, and principal.

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Climate and Culture

As I shared with you at the beginning of the school year, our goal for our climate survey is to rank in the 4th and 5th quintile in all areas!


  • This means that all of our areas of our climate survey will be green.
  • Also, we want to provide our students with the opportunities to participate in after school or co-curricular activities as we support our district's goal #4.
  • Shout out to our Counseling Queen team, Ms. Woods, Ms. Calderon, and Mrs. Mooty, for coordinating and promoting our anti-bullying activities. Our staff and students had a great time!

SMG Field Trip - Harriet

Under Ms. Lewis' leadership and with the support of teachers/staff volunteers, approximately 130 of our 8th grade students were rewarded with the amazing opportunity to watch the screening of Harriet the movie based on Harriet Tubman. Our students and volunteers had a full movie theater all to themselves. Our students were very attentive and respectful!!! At the end, Mr. Johnson led a discussion about the profound history of this remarkable movie.

REMINDERS FOR THE UPCOMING WEEK

  • During 8:00 a.m. - 8:20 a.m., students must be engaged in meaningful activities: homework support, Grade checks, organizing binder, CNN news with reflection sheet.
  • It is critical to be prepared with lessons and materials to avoid having issues with students. When we are not prepared, our students can tell and will find their own way of entertainment.
  • As we work on documenting the progress our students are making, remember our policy regarding failure rates and the various opportunities needed to ensure our students are successful. EIA (Regulation) (TEI 2.2, 4.2, 4.5)
  • During transitions, let's make sure to have 100% participation and hold each other accountable to be present in the hallway supporting students. Our goal is to narrate the positive and have at least 10 positive interactions each transition. APs, CICs, and counselors will be working with each one of you to provide individual support. (TEI 3.3 and 3R Positive Attitude/Enthusiasm).
  • Be very consistent in the effective implementation of various practices discussed during our TEI orientation and lesson alignment conversations. With regards to Alignment (learning objective), the proficient rating states: Focuses students at the beginning and throughout the lesson, by clearly stating (TEI 2.1)
    • What they are learning
    • Why it is important
    • What mastery looks like
    • How to connect it to prior knowledge and their own lives and explaining to students
  • Submit lesson plans by Thursday at 8:00 a.m. (TEI 4.2)

DAILY EVENTS

Monday, November 18-

  • A Day
  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring.
  • Meet with your grade level teams to align your Lesson Plans, continue the analysis of the common assessment, and analyze data profiles for your students.
  • 4:45 - 6:00 p.m. AFC update and collaboration - Library. Basketball Boys coaches will hold practice; anyone who is absent on Monday and coaches will meet with Mr. Cordoba on Tuesday during PLC to collaborate on topic addressed during Monday meeting.
  • Girls Basketball Game at Loos Vs. Marsh - 6:30 p.m.
  • Soccer Game at Franklin Field Vs. Spence - 6:30 p.m. Girls. 7:30 p.m. Boys


Tuesday, November 19-
  • B Day.
  • Make up teacher collaboration during PLC - Mr. Cordoba's office
  • 9:15 - 2:00 p.m. - 6-8th Dallas Contemporary Museum - Ms. Brunson will send list of students by 11/18/19 at noon.

  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring.
  • Meet with your grade level teams to align your Lesson Plans, continue the analysis of the common assessment, and analyze data profiles for your students.
  • After School Programs are cancelled. Buses will be running to support our boys basketball team since they have games this week. Soccer will be cancelled today for PD for teachers.
  • 4:30 - 6:00 p.m. PD and planning.
  • Remember to clock out at or after 6:00 p.m.


Wednesday, November 20-
  • A Day
  • 7:45 a.m. - 8:10 a.m. - AVID Site Team Monthly Chat and Chew - Ms. Reeves, Room 220.
  • Thanksgiving Luncheon for staff during all 3 lunches - Ms. Brown
  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring.
  • Meet with your grade level teams to align your Lesson Plans, continue the analysis of the common assessment, and analyze data profiles for your students.
  • After School Programs are cancelled. Buses will be running to support our boys basketball team since they have a game this week. Soccer will be cancelled today for working session for teachers.
  • 4:30 - 6:00 p.m. PD and planning.
  • Remember to clock out at or after 6:00 p.m.


Thursday, November 21-

  • B Day
  • 8:00 a.m. - Lesson Plans Due
  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring.
  • Department Collaboration PLC
  • Buses will be running to support basketball girls team and our soccer teams - Coaches will need to confirm the need of buses if practices will be held on this day.
  • 4:50 p.m. - 5:50 p.m. - Rusk Leadership Academy - Anyone interested in pursuing a leadership role with 5 or more years of teaching experience is welcome to attend. Please, fill out this link to RSVP. We will have a series of sessions and your commitment is required if you choose to be a part of this opportunity.
  • Boys Basketball Game at Loos Vs. Marsh - 6:30/7:30 p.m.


Friday, November 22-

  • A Day
  • High School Fair - 8th Grade - Ms. Woods/Ms. Scott.
  • 9:15 - 2:00 p.m. - AVID to Lassiter Early College at El Centro - Ms. Reeves will send list of students by 11/20/19 at noon.

Upcoming Events

December 5

  • Bandsgiving


December 6

  • Winter Dance - Athletics Fundraiser event. More information forthcoming. - Tentative


December 10

  • Winter Concert and Performance - Band and Cheerleaders


December 13 - 19

  • ACP Week
  • Dec. 13 and Dec. 16 full days
  • Dec. 17 - 19 Early Release


December 19

  • 4:00 p.m. Staff Holiday Party at Big Al's


December 20

  • Teacher Work Day


January 6

  • Staff Development
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Assessment Training

As we prepare for ACP and STAAR testing all staff must complete the STAAR security training modules, per our district and TEA recommendation. Complete all 3 Modules.

Let's Keep in Our Thoughts and Prayers

  • Mr. Orlando Garcia - He has been ill under a doctor's care and is under control.
  • Mrs. Mooty - Her grandmother passed away last week.
  • Ms. Kannada - Managing own health as well as her child who was sick.

Happy Birthday -

We want to wish you the best and many blessings for the years to come.

  • Ms. Reyes - 11/4
  • Ms. Robinson - 11/7
  • Mr. Hernandez - 11/29