Excellence Without Boundaries
Excellence in Leading. Teaching.Learning
October 17, 2016, Week 3 of 2nd Six Weeks
BY MAY 2017, AT LEAST 80% OF ALL STAAR EXAMS TAKEN BY ARMS STUDENTS WILL MEET THE PHASE II PASSING STANDARD.
Spot Observation & Feedback Rotation: Group B
- Leadership's goal is to conduct a minimum of 85% of our SPOT feedback sessions in person.
- 100% of Group spots are to be conducted each week.
- 100% of observation conference are conducted with both (leader and teacher) bringing necessary PRE WORK and document action steps and follow up.
I reserve my message this week to share how INCREDIBLY thankful I am for the Instructional Leadership Team, a.k.a. Trailblazers, at ARMS. This group of educators: Ms. Walker, Ms. Nix, Ms. Hunt, Ms. Jenkins, Ms. Addison, Ms. Lacy, Ms. Hawkins, and Ms. Crabtree, are fully committed to the growth and success of our students through the support of growing and developing teachers. They are gifted, committed, and passionate individuals who come together to serve lifting the teaching and learning experience at ARMS. We are not perfect, but we do believe in growing ourselves and upholding the constant goal of excellence.
Growth within oneself and within your team is fundamental and I applaud our team because we have been committed to becoming a true team, one that works, grows, and supports one another. The team continues to stretch themselves and I am thankful for the partnership we have.
I share this with the staff because becoming a team is work and it does not happen overnight. It takes commitment, vulnerability, and belief that together we are a force to transform lives.
Being on any team at ARMS means you believe that you add value! We believe in not just the word team, but we thrive on this word. If the team is off the work is harder and we need to take the time to develop this connection.
I am very proud and thankful of the team I have that stands alongside me in leading the work at ARMS.
Proudest Principal in DISD,
Operation Excellence - Excellence in Leading.Teaching.Learning
Operation Excellence: TG2 Spotlight
We say Goodbye to an original Ranger...Ms. Thomas
Spotlight on Ms. Liliana, Ms. Linda, and Ms. Martha: Operation Excellence (TEAM)
On behalf of the 6th grade team, I would like to highlight the friendly and welcoming personalities of Ms. Liliana, Ms. Linda, and Ms. Martha.
Every morning they are ready to welcome the 6th graders (and teachers) and make sure they have their breakfast to eat.
They do a great job by really setting the tone especially when it comes to returning a morning greeting. Ms. Linda always makes sure students say "Good Morning" in return.
It is a joy to have these three staff members in our hallway everyday! They know how to start the day off right!
Spotlight on Ms. Reddy: Operation Excellence (TEAM & GRIT)
I just wanted to spotlight Ms. Reddy. She has been more than amazing leading both Mr. Alexander and myself through our first year of teaching. In the midst of the chaos of trying to learn lesson planning, parent conferences, and grade speed, Reddy feels like a superhero sent to us. Kudos to her for the patience, advice, and organization she has lead our 8th grade team with so far this year!
Spotlight on 8th Grade C.E.A. (Candy Enforcement Administration) Operation Excellence (TEAM & GRIT)
Ms. Lewis writes:
I would like to recognize the 8th grade C.E.A. (Candy Enforcement Administration) for a huge bust Thursday morning. Anonymous tips led to many packs of gum and candy being confiscated by the joint efforts of Ms. Reddy and Ms. Santos. They were able to keep these items from being trafficked through our hallways and into our classrooms. Ms. Reddy and Ms. Santos, we salute you for all the heroic work you do!
Spotlight on 7th Grade Pod Leaders: Operation Excellence (Team & Growth)
Id like to thank the POD Leaders of the 7th Grade, Kattan, Stephens, and Gardner. They have stepped up and are becoming awesome leaders for 7th grade teachers. Because of their leadership, our discipline referrals and tardies are on the decline. Great job guys.
Spotlight on Ms. Williams: Operation Excellence (Team, Grit, & Growth)
I would like to spotlight Ms. Williams, Teacher Aide for 7th Grade. Ms. Williams’ energy is so contagious! She is always willing to lend a helping when asked. Ms. Williams always keeps you laughing when you come in her presence! I’ve never seen her without a smile on her face. Ms. Williams, you’re truly a great person! Truly about Team, Grit and Growth!
Spotlight on Ms. Mathis & Ms. Wison: Operation Excellence (Team)
I would like to recognize Ms. Wilson and Ms. Mathis for jumping in and brainstorming and helping with the 7th Grade Ceiling tile project. Without their knowledge and skills and dedication, we wouldn’t be on the brink of greatness!!!
Spotlight on 6th Grade Team & Ms. Coley: Operation Excellence: Team, Grit, & Growth
Ms. Hunt writes:
I would like to shout Mrs. Coley for keeping a positive attitude while making schedule changes.
Shout out to the entire 6th grade team for continuing always keeping our students first and going out of their way to plan how to acclimate POD 6D.
Spotlight on Ms. A Brown: Operation Excellence (Team)
I would like to recognize Ms. Brown, 7th Grade Math. Whenever I ask her to help with anything and make adjustments in 7th grade hall duty, she goes out of her way to do a good job and is always willing to help. Thank you Ms. Brown for your dedication and for being an awesome team member.
Spotlight on Ms. Romero: Operation Excellence (Team & Grit)
Ms. Ward writes:
I would like to spotlight Ms. Romero for Team and Grit! I know it can be challenging coming in as a new teacher, but she has really stepped up to the plate as far as helping out with lessons and resources. I truly appreciate her cheerful demeanor and willingness to assist every day, and I can’t wait to see how much she has grown by the end of the year.
Spotlight on Officer Hopkins, Mr. Solis, and Officer Moore: Operation Excellence (TEAM)
I would like to thank Verbal (Officer Mo) , Mr. Solis, and Hopkins for helping with anything that I need for 7th grade lunch. We don’t have any problems on the blacktop that isn’t easily handled and we often get complimented on how clean the 7th grade leaves the cafeteria. Its because of their expectations that they’ve established with the 7th graders. Thank you guys!!
Spotlight on 6th Grade, Electives and Counselors
I would like to send a huge shout out and thank you to my awesome co-counselors Ms. Luckey and Mr. Villegas. They are BOTH always willing to help out in any situation and they always go above and beyond to help me out whenever I need them especially during these busy times in the world of counseling. They are truly amazing and I am so blessed to have them as my co-counselors. You guys rock!!!
I would like to send out a huge thank you to the entire 6th grade team of teachers and elective teachers for their patience and positive attitude during all of the recent schedule changes. Thank you so very much! I truly appreciate you!
Spotlight on Ms. Williams & Ms. Hawkins: Operation Excellence (Team)
I like to thank Ms. Williams and Mrs. Hawkins. Not only do they help me with Science and Special Education interests, they help me get things done for the 7th grade as a whole. I am blessed to have such wonderful teammates
Spotlight on Ms. Scally: Operation Excellence (Growth)
Since the moment Ms. Scally became part of the ARMS Family she had a vision for what she wanted to create. She immediately began working with her partner in this very important work, Ms. Fuller. Who is awesome and equally committed to having a superb Media Center.
Ms. Scally's goal was to begin to develop the Media Center as a viable contributor to the learning experience at ARMS.
Your vision and passion is greatly appreciated I know that we will continue to add to the experience. I truly am thankful for your leadership and commitment to our students.
(Pictured below with her mother during parent conference night)
Spotlight on 7th Grade Cafeteria Breakfast Team: Operation Excellence (Team)
I would like to recognize the ladies that come and serve us breakfast every morning on the 7th grade hallway. They are so patient and kind and even help us regulate the morning hallway traffic- Thank you ladies
Spotlight on Ms. Baker: Operation Excellence (Team)
Id like to thank Ms. Baker for her dedication to the SPED team. She goes out of the way to not only serve the students in her classroom but also the students in the whole special education department. Thank you Ms. Baker.
2nd Semester Campus Wide Focus
Real Time Feedback: Non Verbal Signs
Hot Spots- hand motion signals to teacher that there are students that are off task and teacher proximity is needed within this area.
Circulate - hand motion signals to teacher to move around the room and progress monitor student learning (whether in groups, pairs, or working independently). Circulate allows for needed instructional adjustments to be made based on data from student progress and quality of student work (verbal or written).
Teacher Exemplars & Monitor Aggressively
These are two areas, as an overall campus, we are seeing the opportunity to grow and positively impact student academic success. During PLC's on Monday each content area will discuss in further detail what was touched upon at Staff Meeting.
Exemplars focus on a teacher's development of an ideal student responses to a written (look for's) or verbal (listen for's) task. Exemplars are written and used as point of reference during progress monitoring of student learning.
Monitor Aggressively- Checks students' independent work to determines whether they're learning what is being taught. Real time instructional adjustments are data driven.
Life Changing Experiences 10/20-16
On October 20, 2016, ARMS will be hosting an event called, Life Changing Experiences, for some of our students. Life Changing Experiences is a 3D Interactive experience that teaches and encourages students to express a willingness to make behavioral changes in crucial areas to better their lives. The event takes place in the auditorium and it is a total of 90 minutes of innovative multi-sensory experiences. There are 5-6 different experiences using different technologies, including 3D glasses, music, motion, and darkness to inspire students. Each grade level with focus on a different topic:
6th Grade (Free2B - Bullying Prevention)
7th Grade (Addicted 2 Life - Drugs and Alcohol)
8th Grade (License 2 Dream - Entrepreneurship)
ARMS for the Cure!!
Please click here for the link to our very own ARMS webpage.
Ms. A. Lewis is our fearless, fun, and fantastic team leader. Race Day information forthcoming!
ARMS Professionalism Corner
Teachers should take the initiative in establishing good relationships with the parents of their students. Remember that parents are our partners, or perhaps to put it even better, we are their partners, in the education of their children. Of course they are very concerned for the well-being of their children, as we are. If teachers work (and it is work) to initiate positive relationships with parents, early in the year, then everyone benefits from the positive interactions. Communication is key. Remember to focus on the idea that we all want the same thing as far as students are concerned: their success.
ARMS Tardy Data
Weekly Events October 17th - 20th
Monday, October 17
Homecoming - 8th Grade Western Day
Tuesday, October 18
Homecoming: 7th & 8th Jersey Day - Homecoming Game & Court Presentation
Wednesday, October 19
Homecoming: 8th Grade Twin Day
ARMS Life Changing Experience Event (see email from Mr. Villegas)
Coffee w/Principal @ 8:45 in the cafeteria
Parent Workshop @ 9:30 in the cafeteria
ARMS 360 Degree Leader : Dinner & Dialogue
Thursday, October 20
Homecoming: 8th Grade Raider Day (Shout our to our Skyline HS Raiders)
Staff Breakfast (provided by 6th grade)
PSAT 8th Graders (AM)
POD Action (AD)
Friday, October 21
MS Fair Day / School Closed
Monday October 24
Trailblazer @ 9:00 - Conference room
Tuesday, October 25
ARMS Garden Parent/Family Meeting
Show & Tell 6th Grade Band Performance
Wednesday, October 26
8th grade Fun Lunch
Momentous Team Check in meeting 4:30 pm
Thursday, October 27
Ignite Academy @ 4:30
Advance Band Concert
Friday, October 28
Core Meeting @ 9:30 -Conference room
Mindfulness in Schools
In this Time Magazine article, Mandy Oaklander reports on the spread of mindfulness programs in U.S. schools. “That mindfulness is taking place alongside math in elementary school says something about the stressed-out state of kids’ brains these days,” says Oaklander. “Educators increasingly believe that mindfulness can be an antidote to three of the biggest mental-health challenges that kids face: anxiety, trouble paying attention, and bullying.” A robust body of research shows that for adults, practicing yoga, meditation, and deep-breathing exercises can reduce stress, ease anxiety, improve sleep, prevent illness, reduce depression, and even mitigate pain. Can there be similar benefits when K-12 students learn how to monitor their bodies and emotions and better communicate their feelings to others – especially young people afflicted by ADHD, anxiety, and depression?
“These are not niceties,” contends Patrick Tolan of the University of Virginia. “These are critical capabilities. If children today don’t learn how to take care of themselves, it’s going to have an enormous impact on our health care costs and the health of our nation.” Lisa Flook of the University of Wisconsin has done preliminary research showing the positive effects of mindfulness training in schools. “A body of work shows there are these innate pro-social and altruistic qualities present from a very early age in children,” she says. “This is a way of nurturing the seeds of kindness in children.” Randye Semple of the University of Southern California’s Keck School of Medicine agrees: “There’s an almost immediate calming effect of mindfulness practice. Essentially, mindfulness is attention training. We’re showing them that attention can be increased, that it can be ramped up and it can be trained.” Researchers are finding that calm breathing triggers the part of the nervous system that’s the opposite of the fight-or-flight response, slowing heart rate, lowering blood pressure, and getting kids to focus on what is happening in the moment.
There’s been pushback on mindfulness, with some parents complaining that it’s teaching Buddhism and has no place in schools. One program in Canton, Ohio was discontinued because of parental objections. “I don’t think any of us deny that most of these general practices and concepts come from Buddhism,” says Semple. “But we’re not teaching Buddhism. We’re teaching kids how to pay attention.” Jennings believes these programs are “100% secular” and hopes they’ll be widely implemented.
“The Mindful Classroom” by Mandy Oaklander in Time Magazine, October 3, 2016 (Vol. 188, #13, p. 44-47), no e-link available
ARMS Fall Parent Teacher Conferences
3rd Annual Hispanic Hertiage Dance Performance: Bailamos!
ARMS Title 1 Parent Meeting
ARMS 1st Book Fair a Success!!
ARMS 8th Grade Spirit Friday & Pep Rally!!
Ranger Bucks On the Rise!!
ARMS Fall Observation Rotations
ARMS Facility Request Google Doc
This is how all facility requests are to be made moving forward.
ARMS Safety Drill Staff One Pager
The Most Important Work of our Time! Always remember YOUR IMPACT!
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.