Redbird Roundup, Vol. 13

Friday, November 22, 2019

Our Mission and Vision

Norris Middle School prepares all students for their future by providing a safe, caring, and diverse school environment that maintains high expectations, academic excellence, and respect for all. Success, achievement, respect…It’s a Redbird thing!


La Escuela Secundaria Norris prepara a todos los estudiantes para su futuro ofreciendo un entorno escolar seguro, atento y diverso que mantiene altas expectativas, excelencia académica y respeto para todos. Éxito, logro, respeto…Es una cosa de los Redbirds!

Principal's Greeting

Happy Friday Redbird Nation!


Can you believe we are nearing Thanksgiving break? This year has absolutely flown by. I hope you have a wonderful five days of rest, relaxation, great food, a little football, and fun. You deserve it.


Please come check out "Beauty and the Beast Jr." on Tuesday, November 26. Our students and sponsors (Eskridge, Carver, Pignatore) have been working so hard on this show, and can't wait to show it off for you!


Have a wonderful weekend!


Dr. Carr

November 25-27

Monday, November 25: NAC Meeting After School, Learning Walks Canceled

Tuesday, November 26: 7th Grade Beauty and the Beast Performance, 5th Block; Beauty and the Beast, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, November 27: Non-duty day for staff, Happy Thanksgiving!

Staff Introductions

This week we get to know Egon, Cody Kotrous, and Margie Zukaitis.

Egon-Therapy Dog

Name: Egon

How many years have you been teaching/in education? About three months

What is your favorite thing about Norris Middle School? Never ending belly rubs and ear scratches!


How would your friends describe you? Laid back, protective, a lover

What website/app do you use most often? Rover

What is something we would never guess about you? I'm actually an introvert, but people just flock to me!

What is the best thing that happened to you this week? The weather was nice, so I got to play fetch outside a ton!

What is the worst food you ever ate? Brussel sprouts...yuck!

What TV show would you binge watch if you had the time? White Fang

What would you sing at karaoke night? Who Let the Dogs Out

What is the farthest you have ever been from home? Murray, NE, where I was born.

Is a hot dog a sandwich? Why or why not? I'm uncomfortable with this question...

Cody Kotrous-Custodian/Groundskeeper

Name: Cody Kotrous

How many years have you been in education? 3 years

What is your favorite thing about Norris? The people


How would your friends describe you? Funny, considerate

What website/app do you use most often? Facebook

Would you rather go 30 days without your phone or an entire lifetime without dessert? No dessert

What TV show would you binge watch if you had the time? The Good Place

What's the farthest you have ever been from home? Colorado

Margie Zukaitis-Data Secretary/Registrar

Name: Margie Zukaitis

How many years have you been teaching/in education? 4 – all at Norris

What is your favorite thing about Norris Middle School? This year I would have to say Egon. Seeing him just brightens up my day. That face!!


Would you rather go 30 days without your phone or an entire lifetime without dessert? 30 days without phone

What TV show would you binge watch if you had the time? Dead to Me – highly recommend. But when in the mood for trash TV – Southern Charm.

What’s the farthest you’ve ever been from home? So Fiji comes very close to being the correct answer. Fiji was our honeymoon destination. Unfortunately there was a coup and we had to change our plans. Honolulu is the furthest I have ever been.

What would you sing at karaoke night? Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey

Is a hot dog a sandwich? Why or why not? In a bun it is a sandwich because you have the bread. Alone it is not.

Up Next Week in the Redbird Roundup

I do three staff introductions each week. You'll be getting an email from me with questions. Even if you have done it before, please participate and do it again! Please respond and include a picture by Thursday! I will do the first week.


Up next: Sandra Bowzer, Sara Newman, and Brianna Walentine.

Wellness Word to the Wise

Eat One Green Food Per Day

Eating one green vegetable per day or one leafy green is a great way to get yourself healthier in the kitchen without much thought. It can be a cup of broccoli at dinner or spinach snuck into a smoothie. A cup of green beans at dinner or some leafy kale tossed with chopped sweet potato and some simple seasonings. Anything counts, just make sure it’s green, natural, and from the earth. These foods provide us with more nutrition than any other food out there. They alkalize our bodies, promote mental wellness and protect us from major forms of disease.

Powerful Practices

Using Flipgrid

Ms. Hansen's students worked with Ms. Wakefield in the library to use Flipgrid to record who they are as readers. What a cool way for our students to express themselves! Mrs. Newman provided some examples of Flipgrid use in her PD on Tuesday, and if you'd like more info, Ms. Wakefield and Ms. Evans will be presenting at our next faculty workshop!

Service Learning Students Preparing Sensory Fair

Ms. Jacobberger's Service Learning students are working with their UNO partners to prepare the Sensory Fair for JP Lord. They are designing activities around art, touch, smell, library and advocacy. This is a great partnership to serve our neighbors at JP Lord.

The Benefit of Sticking With Something

I saw this article on Twitter, and it reaffirmed so much that we are doing. I know we have been hammering learning goals since August, but we are seeing such amazing growth! In our most recent round of coaching visits we saw 74% of our teachers demonstrating proficiency in posting and unpacking learning goals (compared to 21 the first round). We also conducted data walks in 18 classrooms and 17 of those 18 had a learning goal posted and they stated and unpacked for students. Keep fighting the good fight, you're doing a great job.


https://georgecouros.ca/blog/archives/9312

The Pacer

Sergio Martinez-Cruz (of Norris XC fame) ran 108 on the pacer in PE. Most students are in the 30-50 range. Mrs. Bressman sent me this, but the other students were so excited for him they hoisted him up in victory!

House Cup Updates

Now we're talking...

Norris Staff and Students Seen and Heard

Fundraiser Dances

DJ Pauley G is in the house to run the music for our fundraiser dances! 6th and 7th graders danced (well, sort of) on Thursday and our 8th graders will go Friday. A big thank you to all our supervision help, and Connie (the dance queen), Ann (the fundraiser queen) and Margie for all their help!

Redbird Posse in Action!

Our drums, dance, poms, and flags from our Redbird Posse are well into their practices! This is an amazing group of students that represents our school in many events in the spring, including the Cinco de mayo parade.

High School Recruitment Fair

Our 7 OPS High Schools visited Norris on Wednesday, November 20 to share about their unique programs and offerings for our students. High School Selection will happen in January, so it's coming up fast!

Final Thought

This has been a prevailing focus this year, as we have incorporated more wellness activities to support you and your well-being. Our job is not easy, and we have to take care of ourselves and each other. We continue to reevaluate this to do everything in our power to make sure you feel supported and cared for.


https://www.ted.com/talks/sydney_jensen_how_can_we_support_the_emotional_wellbeing_of_teachers?utm_campaign=tedspread&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=tedcomshare