What's "Growing" On @ Cannon?

Staff Information & Updates 02/08/16

From the Principal's Pen...

February 21-27 - Engineers Week 2016

Cannon scholars are involved in unique engineering experiences every day at school, however, during Engineers Week, we want to make sure that ALL of our Cannon scholars are provided the opportunity to learn more about the importance of engineering and the impact engineers have on our world!

Several grade levels have already scheduled special activities for their scholars to be able to interact with engineers during this special week. Our 2nd graders will be visiting the Museum of Science & History, to participate in their special learning exhibits with actual engineers. 5th grade scholars will have engineers from Lockheed visiting their classrooms during that week, who will lead interactive learning experiences. Additionally, some our 5th grade Cannon STEMbassador scholars have been selected to appear on the Good Morning Texas show as part of a special segment that highlights Engineers Week at FWMSH.

What will YOUR grade level be doing during this special week? Please send me an email to let me know your grade level plans. We will be putting together information about all grade level activities to provide to the district's communications department.

We have purchased a special Engineers Week pencil & bookmark for all Cannon scholars. Additionally, we will provide certificates for all teachers to use with your scholars to recognize your young engineers during this special week!

Be sure to check out some of these great resources to help your scholars learn more about the difference engineers make in our daily lives and to find some fun engineering activities!

Discover Engineering

Engineer Your Life

Engineering Go For It

The Engineering Place

Engineer Girl

Proud to be your principal,

Tona :)

Great Training Opportunity!!

Subs will be provided for 3 teachers to attend a district training about coding in the classroom!! Let Tona know by Tuesday 2/11 at 4:00 if you are interested in attending.

Kerissa Bearce is GCISD's Code.org facilitator and will host a K-5 Code.org Curriculum Training at the PDEC on March 1. We have several Cannon teachers who have attended this training before and are actively utilizing the Code.org resources in their classrooms on a regular basis with their scholars. This training helps you learn how to get started with coding in the classroom, so that you can begin to extend coding experiences for your scholars by designing work beyond the resources provided through Code.org. There are many creative and high-interest ways to make curriculum connections through coding in the classroom! Looking for ideas on how to do this? Megan Pettit is one of our local experts on how to integrate coding into content, so be sure to ask her about how she has done this!

Lisa's Coaching Corner

This week I have spoken to many of you about student led conferences. As a reminder, one goal of our Portrait of a Graduate is to grow self­-regulated learners. One way we do

that is through goal setting, data collection, reflection and student led conferences. I have found several videos that I wanted to share. These videos are just a glimpse into conversations but are by no means an expectation. I thought by sharing these videos, it will help you process and prompt conversations within your teams.

Here is an example of a kindergarten student sharing his goal notebook and data. The

powerful point to me was when the family wrote a goal with their child. Promoting

teamwork helps bring awareness and responsibility for the parents too.

Kindergarten-Led Conference at Graden

This video is a teacher that actually walks the parents through “what to expect” at the

student led conference. If the student and parents watched this at the beginning of their

conference, they would know exactly what to do ALONG with a personal touch from


Kessler Kindergarten Student-led Conferences

Dates to Remember

2/08-2/10 Cubs Night Out @ Wise Guys Pizza

2/08 U.CAN 3:00-3:45

2/09 Employee Survey date - see details below

2/09 Severe Weather Drill -8:15

2/09 PLC Week A - 5th grade 2:00-3:30

2/10 Leadership Colleyville tours Cannon with Dr. Ryan

2/10 PLC Week A - 4th grade 2:00-3:30

2/11 Principal's Coffee - 8:00-9:00 cafeteria

2/11 Valentine's Potluck lunch for staff!

2/11 PLC Week A - 3rd grade 2:00-3:30

2/12 Valentine's Day parties

2/15 Professional Learning Day - Student Holiday

2/16 PLC Week B - 1st 2:00-3:30

2/16 Special Programs EXPO - CTMS 5:30

2/17 Early Release 11:45 - Student-led conferences

2/17 PLC Week B - Kinder -during conference time

2/18 Early Release 11:45 - Student-led conferences

2/18 PLC Week B - 2nd - during conference time

2/19 5th graders middle school tour

2/19 Talent Show 6:00 pm

2/20 FAB Now Conference in Ft. Worth

2/20 Mini-CAST Conference in Frisco

2/21-2/27 - National Engineering Week!

2/22 Play It Safe during Specials times

2/23 Fire Drill - 1:45 pm

2/23 STAAR Security Training - all staff 3:15 - 3:45

2/23 PLC Week A - 5th grade 2:00-3:15

2/23 5th grade Parent Night @ GMS 6:30

2/24 World Read Aloud Day 2016

2/24 2nd grade field trip to FWMSH

2/24 PLC Week A - 4th grade 2:00-3:30

2/25 PLC Week A - 3rd grade 2:00-3:30

2/26 PTA SOUPer Lunch for staff!

2/29 Spring Picture Day & Class Pictures

2/29 GMS counselor presentation to 5th grade 2:00

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Please help promote the following information in all of your parent communications!

From engineering challenges to advanced academics to language immersion and early childhood education, GCISD offers a world of opportunities for students. Families are invited to learn more about these opportunities at the Special Programs Expo on Tuesday, February 16 from 5:30 - 8:00 p.m. at Cross Timbers Middle School. The expo will feature stations showcasing our STEM programs, ASPIRE Academy and Dual Language programs. New to the Expo this year, families may also learn about the proposed tuition-based Pre-Kindergarten program, iUniversity Prep and Collegiate Academy. In addition to program stations, presentations focusing on the instructional components and benefits of these programs will be delivered in the lecture hall and Student Activity Center (SAC).

Presentation Schedule:

  • Program Showcase: 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the Black Gymnasium
  • Elementary STEM Presentation: 6:00-6:30 p.m. in the Student Activity Center
  • 5th grade Silver Lake Dual Parents Meeting: 6:00-6:30 p.m. in the Library
  • Elementary Dual Language Presentation: 6:30-7:00 p.m. in the Lecture Hall
  • Elementary Dual Language Q&A with Principals: 7:00-7:30 p.m. in the Library
  • Middle School STEM Presentation: 7:00-7:30 p.m. in the Lecture Hall
  • Lottery Process Presentation: 7:30-8:00 p.m. in the Student Activity Center
  • Elementary ASPIRE Academy Presentation: 7:30-8:00 p.m. in the AVID Classroom
  • Middle School ASPIRE Academy Presentation: 8:00-8:30 p.m. in the AVID Classroom

The applications for dual language, STEM academies and tuition-based pre-kindergarten will be available online beginning Friday, Feb. 17 and are due by Friday, March 25. If more applications are submitted than the maximum number of students each campus may accept, then a lottery will be conducted on Friday, April 1, and streamed live on the district's website. More information will be available on the website after the Expo.

To learn more about the programs that will be showcased at the Expo, click here.



  • UCAN - Library @ 3:00 on Monday, 2/8 - We will use our UCAN meeting time scheduled for Monday 2/8 to meet as a staff to plan remaining UCAN dates for this semester and to receive important campus & district updates.

  • EMPLOYEE SURVEY FOR CANNON STAFF IS TUESDAY 2/9 - Tuesday, 2/9 is the date all Cannon staff will participate in the Employee Satisfaction Survey. The link of the survey will be live on our school library webpage from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on this date. Staff will follow these steps to participate:

  1. Go to any computer and sign in to the campus website.
  2. Go to the Departments and Programs tab and select Library.
  3. On the library webpage, there will be a link to the 2016 Employee Satisfaction Survey.
  4. Click on the link, answer the questions and close the tab. This year there are two questions with open-ended responses. This is new and will allow for additional information to be provided.

The survey is absolutely anonymous and the district is not able to see what log in is used, so if you need someone else to log in for you, you may ask David and he can help log you in. Employees are asked to log in because this is the only way to prevent non-employees from accessing the survey. If you will be out for a district training on this date, please plan to take the survey from your training location. For those who may be off work on Tuesday, you will need to take the survey on a make-up day that will be provided soon. The district values the information received from this survey and can only respond to your feedback if you participate. All campuses are expected to have 100% participation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!

  • GCISD EXPLORING THE POSSIBILITY OF TUITION-BASED PRE-K The district is investigating the feasibility of a tuition-based Pre-K program, beginning in the Fall of 2016. Those families who have a child who will be four-years old, on or before September 1, 2016, may participate in the program, depending on community interest. Families must enter into a lottery to be selected. If there is enough interest in the tuition-based program. The proposed site locations are Bear Creek Elementary, Bransford Elementary, Colleyville Elementary and OC Taylor Elementary. These campuses were selected based on current and projected student enrollment and building capacity. Families who are interested in learning more about the tuition-based Pre-K program are invited to attend the GCISD Special Programs Expo on Tuesday, February 16, 2016 at Cross Timbers Middle School at 6 p.m. At the Expo, district representatives will be available to answer questions about the proposed program. If parents would like more information about the proposed tuition-based Pre-K program, click here for a list of frequently asked questions. Please share this information in your parent communications!

  • JOIN THE VALOR TEAM IN 2016-2017! On February 8th, applications for the fourth class of VALOR will go out to teachers across GCISD. As always, they are looking for positive teachers who desire to grow in a group setting through observation, collaboration, and reflection. All teachers are welcome to apply, whether they are beginning their journey in education or simply wanting to make their last few years their best! VALOR is not only for teachers who have a desire to become assistant principals, coaches, or liaisons; however, people with those aspirations are certainly encouraged to apply. If you are interested in considering this opportunity, please talk to Megan Pettit or Patrick Lollis. They have both been involved in VALOR and will be happy to share their experiences with you!!

  • GEORGE COUROS COMES TO GCISD - REGISTER NOW! The GCISD Innovative Teaching with Technology Conference - June 14: Rather than EdCamp this year, the instructional technology team is hosting a true conference for GCISD teachers. George Couros will be the keynote speaker. GCISD teachers and instructional coaches will lead breakout sessions. Click here for information on Eduphoria registration, Call for Presenters, and more information about George Couros. Please consider submitting a proposal to present at this local conference. We have many staff members who are doing amazing things with technology in their classrooms - share your knowledge with others!!


Plans for the Language Academy are well underway and our wonderful assistant principal, Anne Ricci, will serve as the principal for this summer program again this year!

We are hoping to have students pre-register on our two early release days in February. Having students pre-register really helps determine staffing needs and activities that can be offered. Anne will provide flyers and pre-registration forms to all teachers who have ESL and/or bilingual students in their classrooms. Any student who is eligible to attend should have a LEP label in Eduphoria. (Students on the English side of Dual would not be eligible for this summer program unless they are ESL).

Please start thinking about which students should be considered for this program and be prepared to discuss this with parents during February conferences and help them complete the forms as needed. No money will be accepted at this time. A formal registration form will be sent home the first week of April to those students that pre-registered. That is when fees will be collected.

The cost is:

  • Pre-K and K: no charge
  • 1st -5th that qualify for F/R: $25 non-refundable registration fee
  • 1st - 5th: $180 + $25 non-refundable registration fee ***(This is for the full 6 weeks)

This year's Summer Language Academy will be located at Timberline Elementary June 6 - July 15 ( closed Monday July 4) from 8 a.m. - 12 p.m. Here is a video with more information! If you need have any questions, please let Anne know!!


  • Set a timer and complete daily attendance ON TIME!
  • Meet in the library for U.CAN at 3:00 on Monday
  • Take Employee Survey on Tuesday, between 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Remind parents about the Principal's Coffee on Thursday, 2/11
  • Send Tona an email to let her know what your grade level is planning for Engineers Week.
  • Promote the GCISD Special Programs EXPO in all of your parent communications.
  • Engage your scholars in helping you win one of the $1000 grants from Schroeder Orthodontics!
  • Plan for student-led conferences on 2/17 & 2/18.
  • Sign up in Eduphoria to attend the George Couros session in June 14th
  • Tweet & blog about all of the great things you are doing in your classroom/grade!