ACE Team Weekly Update!

Week 11, Friday, April 9, 2021

Happy Earth Day 2021 - Celebrate April 20 - 22!

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Table of Contents

  1. Program Updates!
  2. All in One Place! (Access to Attendance, Activity Zoom links and more!)
  3. ACE Quality Checklist Observations - Review!
  4. Lesson Plans Due! (Links)
  5. Upcoming Events!
  6. Blend Requirements Due Date!!!!
  7. ACE Team Resources

Team! Share a story about a student to showcase in our weekly Spot Light!

This week's Student Spot Light!

This Week's Student Spotlight 1
This Week's Student Spotlight

Spring 2021 Program Update!

Dear ACE Team!

OMG! 5 weeks left! Let's get this party going! Well, you know what I mean! Let's start working on student work and gathering it so that we can showcase on May 13th!

AISD has updated it's Covid-19 protocols to include social distancing from 6 ft to 3 ft, encouraging all students to return to in-person. While we only have 5 weeks left we will not be adding any additional students effect this week.

One of the functions of my job is to review campus needs and assess how ACE can align with the campus and provide opportunities for students to meet or exceed the goals that I set for our program that meet the campus needs. In reviewing our progress, I have seen some improvements in student attendance, but not so much in grade improvements in reading and math. This is why I am asking you, Widen's ACE Team, to focus and make these next 5 weeks count! We can and we will!

Staff Attendance!

I recognize that we have some folks out due to various reasons and it's okay, but I just want to remind you why we are here. We are here to make a difference in the life of a child and in your absence that glimmer of light tends to dim. So, let's all try to do our best to stay healthy and strong so that we can make that glimmer of light shine bright!

Student Attendance!

Please remember to record student attendance and initial the attendance sheet daily! We want to stay on top of this and meet TEA's requirements!

In-Person and Remote learning must do's!

When a class is nearing the end of instruction, it is important to time ourselves. What do I mean by this? Students need to get their reflection piece in before they leave at the end of the day. Shutting down a class whether remote or in-person without acknowledging a teacher teaching remotely or even allowing students to reflect is inappropriate and will not be tolerated. It is the in-person instructor whom must keep students on line until the class has ended! No exceptions here! This is called proper classroom etiquette. I will make it a point to check in with everyone to ensure that you are following these directives!

Share a story or accomplishment of a student!

To date I have received 4 recognized students, please continue to recognize a student! This is a good way to boost the self esteem and encourage students to strive for more!


I am planning a small family event to celebrate our students on May 13th at 6 pm. I want to create a video to highlight this year and student accomplishments, but I can't do this alone. I need your help. If there is anyone who is awesome in putting a video together let me know so we can start working on putting an amazing video together for our families! While touching on this event I am also going to require that all of our ACE instructors and Vendors, provide stories in a video about your experience working with students during the pandemic, highlight a student or students that have simply gone above and beyond or that they overcame a situation. Be sure that your videos are no longer than 3 - 5 minutes long.

Whew! Okay that's a lot. Again if you are amazing at putting videos together let me know so we can meet and work out the logistics for our end of year presentation!

Anyone interested in assisting me with putting together a video? Email me here,

Student Mindfulness

As we continue to navigate through this new norm, please always be mindful of your student's mental state. Students might be going through some difficult times, so bringing up something that may conjure up feelings may need to be avoided if possible. Be observant of the student surroundings online, if you see something that does not look right or you have a concern about a students behavior, notify me immediately.

Earth Day Activities!

I encourage all of you to add some Earth Day activities and have students turn in their work. I am working on a Google Site for displaying student work that will hopefully be ready by next Friday. It's important that students know the importance of caring for our earth so that in return it will provide for future generations!

Lesson Plans

As I continue to review your lesson plans, please know that I will continue to comment or make edit suggestions if needed. I am also looking at the number of lesson plans turned in. Many of you have already submitted your lessons for the entire semester and I thank you! There are only a few folks that need to continue submitting. The goal is to have at least 16 lesson plans in your folders.

Program Supplies

Supplies! Funds are starting to run a little thin, so if you need any supplies please send me an email with a description and quantity of the supplies you need.

ReMind App

Thank you to all of you for using the ReMind App to send and receive text messages with me. Please continue to do so!

Continue to Encourage!

For those of you who monitor students during homework time, ACE has made an agreement with our Math and Reading coaches to have students access the following apps in their portals.

  • Imagine Learning
  • ReFlex Math
  • DreamBox
  • IXL

Be sure that you use the Apps tracking sheet daily to track when and what apps students are accessing. This is important documentation to have for TEA.

Here is the link:


I am no longer housed in Portable 4 due to termite damage that is extensive. I am now housed in room E5 temporarily. It is might hope that I will be assigned a permanent office by the start of the next school year. Fingers Crossed!

Kind Regards,

Juan Diaz, ACE Program Site Coordinator

Widen Elementary School

ACE Austin Quality Checklist Observations - Update!

ACE Austin Quality Checklist Observations Spring 2021

Schedule: Week of April 12 to April 16

  1. Tuesday: 4/5: Ms. Nina - Leap of Joy

I will refer to the lesson assigned for the day of the observation.

  • Do an Ice Breaker - make sure that you are making connections to the learning objective and prior knowledge.
  • Present student voice and choice during the entire lesson.
  • Remember that when presenting your activity, that you tell students when they will need assistance from an adult for example Pre-K may need an adult to cut paper or glue something.
  • Don't forget to guarantee time for your reflection piece. This should be a recap of the expected outcome of the lesson. Each student should have an opportunity to share something about the desired learned objective.
  • Most importantly, make you lesson fun and engaging!

Folks, please continue to do the amazing work that you are doing. We have seen some really great observations!

Thank you!

Lesson Plans Due!

Thank you to all of you who have may the effort to get your lesson plans to me in a timely manner. Next week I will be running slightly behind in my approval of lesson plans. You may submit them early like on Monday or Tuesday for the next week. This will allow me to review and approve them.

(If you are using last semester's lessons, please let me know so that I can move them over. You may want to review and make them explicit and intentional, the goal is for your students to come away with a learned objective.)

Moving forward please use these required lesson plan templates!

Disregard any other templates if they are not the ones listed here. For Widen ACE Team, use the Live Activity Lesson Plan Template.

Effective Today!

AISD offers Training Opportunities to AISD ACE Staff!

Log on to your portal and access your HCP app to locate the Social Emotional Learning training modules.

I strongly recommend that each of you take these courses and let me know when you do and complete them, by sending me your certificate.

This is a requirement for lesson plan design and student engagement.

Thank you!

New Lesson Plan Requirement Effective Immediately!

Moving forward please include Social Emotional Learning in your lesson design, This can look like incorporating the learned objective of the class into a review of the lesson during reflection. Allow students to talk about how they feel and why they feel that way, What can be done to make the class more exciting?

As I review the lessons moving forward I will look for evidence of Social Emotional Learning and I again ask that you have students submit their work, using the ACE Exit Ticket.

Thank you!

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Lesson Plans - Due Every Friday before 4 pm! *REMEMBER - Lesson Plans should be explicit and engaging!

April ACE Family Event!

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AISD Blend - Requirement! - EXIT TICKETS!


I have created an ACE Student Exit Ticket for you to use. Here is the link to share with your students at the end of your activity. Please give them a few minutes to complete. This is a requirement moving forward. (Copy and paste in the chat box during your Zoom session.)

Just to be clear, this requirement is for both Vendor staff and AISD Staff.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Each week I will try to update the Exit ticket Results. Be sure to pay close attention to some of the details like students liking the activity or the comments made by students. The purpose of this exit ticket is to have proof that ACE is making a difference in the life of a child. You are the ones that make that happen. I would love to see more students love ACE and say that they are learning and learning something new.

Click on the Exit Ticket Results to open the file to see the results!

ACE Student Exit Ticket

You can add this to your Zoom session for students to upload their work!

Team, check out this newsletter on Mental Health Matters! Interesting! A must read!

Hi Widen!

I am excited to share the latest Mental Health Matters newsletter! This February edition was delayed due to the winter snowstorm. However, the content and theme around Healthy Relationships is important to highlight. I hope you enjoy this newsletter as it includes mental health supports and resources designed for staff. Look for a special AISD highlight featuring the Technology Department, a Spring Break Adventures & Ideas link and much more!

Theme: Healthy Relationships...Connection and Respect

Thank you for sharing the Mental Health Matters newsletter with other staff across your campus/department, in support of all!

Thank you for sharing this newsletter across your campus community!


ACE Team Resources!



Effective immediately!

All student devices will remain on campus.

  • Pre-K and Kinder will leave their devices with Ms. Ramirez in A2 and she will hand them to teachers the next morning.
  • Grades 1 - 5 will drop off their devices in room D2, there is a library book shelve where devices will be plugged in and charged over night. Ms. Bartley and a TA will distribute them in the mornings.

Your full support is appreciate with this change!

Thank you!

ACE Team Google Calendar!

Check calendar for upcoming dates and information!

Friday, April 2, 2021 is an AISD Student Holiday, No ACE!

Program Youth Quality Methods Training Webinars

Use this link to review the Youth Program Quality Methods Training Webinars. ACE Austin models itself after the of Youth Program Quality Methods.

Click on the LATT link to access Front-Line Training!

Previous week's weekly update!