Eagle's Nest News

January, 2021

Dear Families,

We hope you will enjoy this informative newsletter! It's full of updates about what's going on here at Neal Middle School. Be on the lookout for more newsletters released on a monthly schedule. Staying connected will help all of us succeed!


The Newsletter Committee

( Ms. Moriarty, Mr. Liska, and Ms. Hanna)

Neal News!

Neal Middle School - Black History Month Virtual Celebration Promo Video

Black History Month Celebration!

Celebrate with us on Thursday, February 25th at 6:00pm. Every year during February, Neal celebrates Black History Month with an epic night of student showcases, performances, community partnership, and so much more. This year will be no different, we are just moving the festivities to Zoom! This year's theme is "If you don't know where you came from, you won't know where you're going." Mark your calendars!

Check Out Neal's Magnet Website!

Our Magnet program has an awesome website, check it out if you'd like more information about our program! If you are applying to a Magnet School, don't foget that the window closes Monday, February 5th at 5pm! Remember that some high schools need references and essays. For more information about the magnet window, see the flyer here: Front English/ Back English/ Front Spanish /Back Spanish

Periodo para la solicitud de lotería – Del lunes 11 de enero a las 12 am. hasta el viernes 5 de febrero a las 5:00 pm. Para enviar la solicitud y recibir las actualizaciones el padre/madre o el tutor legal debe tener una dirección de correo electrónico o un número de teléfono válido para crear una cuenta en línea en www.dpsncapplication.com
Acceso y asistencia para hacer una solicitud:
Teléfono celular, tableta electrónica, computadora, Biblioteca pública - ww.dpsncapplication.com
Asistencia para la solicitud a una escuela especializada (Magnet) o a una escuela de educación técnica y profesional - para programar una cita llame al (919)560-2059 (inglés) o al (919) 560-2510 (español)

The Parent & Family Advocacy and Support Training (PFAST)

The Parent & Family Advocacy and Support Training (PFAST) program is a fun and FREE training that explains how to navigate your child’s educational experience. This year's training will be offered online via Zoom and will be divided into 8 sessions of 1 hour and 15 minutes each. We’ll be covering special topics related to virtual learning in this semester’s sessions. We’ll also be giving out prizes each week for participation. The English language classes will be on Fridays from 3-415PM from February 5 to March 26. If you have any questions, please contact Christa Gibson at mailto:cgibson@dconc.gov or by telephone at 919-560-5438. Information about the course can be found at https://go.ncsu.edu/pfastfaq. Register at https://go.ncsu.edu/pfast2021

¿Qué puedo hacer para apoyar la educación de mis hijos y ayudarles a ser exitosos?

¡Tenemos la respuesta a esta importante pregunta! La Capacitación en defensoría y apoyo para padres y familias (LPFAST) es un divertido entrenamiento gratuito que le explicará cómo funcionan las escuelas en EE. UU. y como apoyar la educación de su hijo. Este año haremos la clase por zoom e incluiremos temas relacionados con el aprendizaje virtual de nuestros hijos. Como incentivo estaremos dando unos regalitos y rifando premios. Las clases en español serán los jueves de 3:00 a 4:15 pm por 8 semanas del 4 de feb. al 25 de mar. Lea más información sobre el programa aquí: https://go.ncsu.edu/l-pfast2020 e Inscríbase aquí: https://go.ncsu.edu/pfast2021. Si tiene preguntas, comuníquese con Angie Schiavone al 919-578-2818 o amschiavone@dconc.gov Para tomar el entrenamiento en inglés visite: https://go.ncsu.edu/pfastfaq

Check out the Electives Newsletter...

Click here to see the newsletter that's all about our Elective classes at Neal! There is a section for each class, from Art to Spanish and everything in between. Find out what students are working on in each class, find some great resources, and hear about what's next on our amazing elective team's agenda!

...And the Sixth Grade Newsletter, too!

Click here to see the newsletter that's just for 6th graders and their families. See our January Habit Highlight winners, find out about the February Habit Highlight, and check out the A/B Honor Roll list!

Neal Food and Pantry Program

Please complete this form if you would like to pick up a food bag, school supplies or hygiene supplies. Pick up will take place at Neal Middle School - 201 Baptist Road, Durham, NC 27704. Sign-up for a pick-up slot in the form below. Please contact the school if you have any questions, 919-560-3955. (Por favor acomplete esta forma si le gustaria recojer una bolsa de comida, utiles para la escuela o productos de higiene. Lo recojeria en la Escuela Neal Middle School- 201 Baptist Road, Durham, NC 27704. Seleccione una de las horas en esta forma. Por favor contacte a la escuela si usted tiene alguna pregunta, 919-560-3955.)

Ms. Pena's Bitmoji Classroom and Occupational Therapy Tips!

💡Digital tool spotlight!💡 Voice to text typing💻

Fatigued from typing? Consider using the voice to text feature in Google docs/slides!

How to use Voice to text typing💻:

• Navigate to https://docs.google.com/

• Select a blank document

• You will see a menu at the top with File/Edit/View/Insert/Format/Tools/Add-ons/Help.

o Click “tools.”

o Scan the tools menu until you see “Voice typing.”

Click on “voice typing.”

• You might receive a notification asking for permission to access your microphone. If your computer does not allow microphone access from google, be sure to click “allow.”

• Click on the microphone icon to speak. The microphone will turn to indicate it is recording.

o Speak clearly what you would like to type and you will see the words appear! Say “period” or any other punctuation you might need.

• Click on the microphone when you are done.

• Now you have your text from your voice, great job!

Find more resources in Ms. Peña’s bitmoji room.

Mr. Liska's Tech Tips!

Check out this handy cheat sheet for Chromebook tips from Google!

When you get your hands on a chromebook, the first thing that you’ll notice is the keyboard looks different. Chromebook is missing DELETE and CapsLock Key (along with few other keys) that you are used to seeing in a keyboard. This tutorial explains everything that you need to know about your Chromebook keyboard shortcuts.

Check Your Students' Grades

Powerschool Parent Portal:

This year we are unable to send out physical report cards, but no need to worry! You can check on your students' grades and attendance anytime using the Powerschool Parent Portal! Click here to read a letter explaining how to access the Parent Portal, and here is a version in Spanish. You can also watch this handy video tutorial that will take you through the process step by step.

Student Spotlights

Shout out to our student tour ambassadors who have been leading virtual tours of Neal each week. Check out a chat with them: https://youtu.be/-PhD70r0na8

Keyana Williams, Jason Woods, Sitsope Ahadji,

Jennnifer Richardson, Naomi Ayoola, Sara Aguilera,

Jada Thompson, Katherine Castillo, Jennifer Sanchez Solis

Ja’Vian Yarborough, Natalie Cardona-Bennett, Hezekiah Ivey

Jareth Smith and Michael Mason- I would like to send a shout out to Jareth Smith and Michael Mason for their hard work in class and the effort that they both give daily in completing the assignments… Both young men made an A for the 2nd nine weeks. They both have excellent attendance also… Great Job fellas……" -Cozart

Sean Iverson- "Sean is always in class with a huge smile on his face. He listens intently and answers questions with that smile. The best part is that he loves to laugh at me when I make a mistake!" -Mrs. Thimme

Denise Cruz-Torres- "Denise shows up to class everyday and does her very best. I can always count on her to participate! She works so hard and I appreciate her effort. Keep going Denise!" Sincerely, Ms. Hinton

Mia Cruz Hernandez - " Avery engaged student, WITH cute baby sister Kimberly

Kevon Rodgers - she always shares riddles in Discovery to get the class thinking and talking in the morning!" -the Legacy team

Jada McDowell- "Jada is one of the fastest readers I have ever seen! In just a few short weeks she has crushed nearly all of the 22 books on the Battle of the Books list. I love hearing about her latest favorite and having her in the Battle of the Books club!" -Ms. Moriarty

Take Care of Yourself

Need Help?

Mental Health Resources

If you or someone you know has a mental illness, is struggling emotionally, or has concerns about their mental health, there are ways to get help. Use these resources to find help for you, a friend, or a family member.

This has been a tough year for many families in our community. If you need more resources, check out this handy Google Doc- there are pages and pages of information about where to get free meals, enrichment activities, discounts and PD opportunities for teachers, COVID-specific assistance, and so much more! (Shoutout to Christy Bechtel, our Beginning Teachers mentor, for this incredible list!) Each month we will highlight one resource in particular. This month's pick is...

Kramden Institute: This is an incredible organization that aims to connect every family with the technology tools and training that they need! If you, or someone you know, is in need of a laptop or computer, get in touch with Kramden! You can even volunteer, donate your old computers, and take classes to learn how to better make use of technology.

We Want to Hear From YOU!

Click Here to Get in Touch

On the google form linked here, you can give us feedback, ask a question, nominate a student/staff member for a spotlight, or even submit your artwork or schoolwork to be featured in the newsletter!

Neal Middle School

Neal Magnet Middle School has been educating Durham for over 50 years! These days we are soaring to new heights, including a 15% proficiency increase over the last four years. Our school met or exceeded growth in the past two years! Go Eagles!