CTHS Learning Leaders

May and June 2015

10 ways to finish the school year strong- by Justin Tarte

1). Make the word 'intentional' your new favorite word. Be precise and be focused on how you use this time. There are a lot of things happening at school during the last few weeks, so keep the focus on doing a few things really well rather than trying to simply 'cover' a lot of things to finish out the year.



2). Try something new you've never done before. Your evaluation is most likely done. Your kids have also seen all the plays you have to offer in your playbook. So, now is the perfect time to take a risk and do something you've never done before. Perhaps it's something you've read about... heard about... or simply thought about... now is the time!

3). Focus on maximizing this time and amplifying the learning opportunities your students have engaged in so far this school year. You've by now built a solid learning and experience foundation with your students the last 7 or 8 months. Now is the time to take something and build upon it and take it to the next level. Perhaps you simply didn't get to go as far or as deep as you originally wanted, so take advantage of this time and take that 'good' to 'great.'

4). Allow your students to really take the lead and take charge of their learning. You've most likely been the conductor of many of the learning experiences so far this school year. Take a seat in the caboose and allow your students to take the lead and allow them to explore, discover, expand upon, or simply build upon something they are interested in learning more about. Allow their natural curiosity to be the intrinsic motivator they need to finish the year strong.

5). Spend a little extra time to get to know those students with whom you just haven't been able to connect. You've got a lot of students, and just like all our relationships, sometimes some grow more quickly than others. Specifically target and engage a few students with whom you haven't been able to develop a strong rapport. Learn more about these students and focus on asking good questions and listening to what they have to say. It's these most recent interactions that could make all the difference.

6). Connect your classroom or an activity you are doing to the global world that surrounds us all. The world continues to get smaller and more connected. Use these last few weeks to help your students understand and appreciate the connectedness we all share. Whether it is doing a Google Hangout or Skype session with an expert in the field or another group of students, now is the perfect time to show that we may be thousands of miles apart, but what happens in one part of the world affects and impacts what happens in other parts of the world.

7). Start getting excited for next year by searching out your 'next big' thing. Sure, this year isn't over yet, therefore don't shut that door just yet. But, there's nothing wrong with looking ahead toward the future. Think about that new approach or that new activity you want to do next year. Start building up that excitement and anticipation for how it might look or the resources you might need. Keep one eye on the present and one eye toward the future.

8). Fresh air and physical activity benefit us all... figure out a way to include them in your classroom activities. Go outside since the weather is most likely more accommodating and while you're out there get your students moving. There is a ton of research that supports movement and different landscapes/learning environments. This time of the year is perfect for both... bonus, figure out a way to use the outside as a learning precursor to something else to make the learning more connected and relevant.

9). Disengage to stay engaged... taking care of yourself. This time of year it's especially important to take time to take care of yourself. Don't be afraid to take an evening off and/or enjoy the weekend without thinking about or doing any school related work. Take the necessary time to enjoy your family and make an effort to disengage your brain from work. It's this personal disengagement that will keep you fresh to keep what happens in the classroom completely engaged.

10). Keep it together... remember, we can expect to get what we expect. Don't take off the last few weeks of school. Don't turn on cruise control and coast your way through the end of the year. There will be plenty of temptation (both students AND your colleagues), but don't take the bait. Keep your expectations both high and realistic, and recognize that finishing strong is just as important as starting strong.

What other suggestions would you add as a way to finish the school year strong?

EOC and AP exam time

May 4-15 Advanced Placement Exams

May 4-6 EOC Exams


Thank you for attending your training and reading your manual. If you have any questions, please contact Cathy Bradshaw. She will assist with ANY concern, question, or suggestion. Please follow all expectations for your classroom walls and hallways. Rooms will be checked Thursday afternoon, April 30.


Rosters will be posted for students on Friday and emailed to each teacher so that you can quickly and easily assist any student.


For EOC testing, students may bring clear bottled water to keep on the floor. Snacks are not allowed around the testing area, so if any student brings a nutritional, small snack, they must keep it up front and can be eaten while on break. We will provide a lunch break for all students. Students may bring their own lunch or can order a sack lunch from the cafeteria which will be delivered to your testing room.


SInce AP exams begin at 8 a.m., we will not have announcements for the two weeks over the intercom. All announcements will be sent through your email. Thank you for reading them each morning and answering any questions students have. We will also make announcements to students during their lunches. Remind your students we are a closed campus. All students must ram in on campus during lunches. Important information is given each day!!

Events for May and June 2015

April 27 Senior Meetings during lunches to review details of Prom, Senior Awards, and Graduation

April 27 National Honor Society Induction 7:00 PAC

April 28 Charmers Banquet

April 29 Ranger Awards of Excellence Breakfast-Celebrate our 5th Six Weeks Character and Academic Award Recipients, CPAC meeting @4:30

April 30 College 101 in our cafe @ 6:30, Night of CTHS Stars Pageant (NHS community service project to benefit Wounded Warriors) @7:30

May 1 State Gymnastics Meet- CTHS, Art Xperience @Boswell, GenTX Decision Day (Where are You wanting to Go to College?), Track and Field Regionals @Texas Tech

May 2 Prom 7-11 at Gaylord- Doors open at 6:30

May 4 Biology EOC

May 4- 15 Advanced Placement Exams

May 5 US History EOC

May 6 Algebra I EOC, PTO @6:00 in DIstrict Board Room, Nurses Day

May 7 SNAG Class of 2016 @6:30 in cafe

May 12 SNAG Class of 2015 Dinner in cafe @6:30

May 13 The Promise- PAC @7:00

May 15 Track and Field State Championships- University of Texas

May 16 Academic Awards Excellence Gala CTHS cafe @ 6:00

May 18 Junior Class LemonBall Tournament @ 5:00, Senior Rangers of Distinction Awards Program @ 7:00 in PAC

May 19 Bass Hall Fine Arts Showcase

May 20 Yearly Employee Awards Luncheon at HCTC

May 21 Top 10% Honor Graduates luncheon at HCTC, Rangers of Distinction Awards Program in the PAC @ 7:00

May 22 Spring Sports Pep Rally and Championship LemonBall Game 3:30

May 25 Student and Staff Holiday- Memorial Day

May 26 Student Council Blood Drive in gym

May 27 CTHS Spring Signing Day in gym @8:30 a.m.

May 28 Choir Ranger Revue Showcase @ 7:00

May 29 Varsity Choir Ranger Review Showcase and Dinner @ 6:00

May 30 UIL State Choir Solo and Ensemble

May 31 Baccalaureate for our graduation seniors @ 7:00

June 2 Semester Exams for Seniors

June 3 Semester Exams, Senior Graduation Picture with Cap and Gown 11 in Gym (all seniors will have lunch during 5th period on campus)

June 4 Semester Exams

June 5 Semester Exams, Early Release @1:00

June 6 Staff WorkDay @7:30 (family breakfast and presentation of awards)

June 7 Inaugural Class of 2015 Graduation @FWCC 1:00, Seniors must be at FWCC at 11:00 with a sack lunch for practice.


The mission of Chisholm Trail High School is to foster a culture of excellence that instills a passion for a lifetime of continuous achievement in every student.

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Senior Leaders

Please continue to remind your seniors:


  • Order your cap and gown/announcements/graduation memorabilia through Herff Jones- 817-336-2035
  • Please plan on attending Main Event after graduation. It is completely free!!!
  • Senior Meetings during lunches on Monday, April 27. We will discuss prom and updated graduation information.
  • April 28- Last names of A-L may pick up your prom tickets. You must have your prom protocol form turned in and present a picture ID.
  • April 29- Last names of M-Z may pick up your prom tickets. You must have your prom protocol form turned in and present a picture ID.
  • Prom is May 2 from 7-11 at the Gaylord. You must have your ticket and picture ID. No one will be allowed admittance past 8 p.m. unless you are scheduled to attend another CTHS event. If so, please let Mr. Goodner know so that your name and expected time of arrival can be documented for our ticket takers :)
  • Senior Awards is May 18 at 7:00 in the PAC.
  • Our Senior Charge to the Junior class followed by the senior walk is being planned!!!
  • Senior Finals is June 2-5. Work hard so that you get your exemptions (grades, attendance, behavior)
  • Graduation Senior Inaugural Class Picture will be June 3 during 3rd and 4th lunch. Seniors will eat during 5th period lunch. Bring your Cap, Tassel, Gown, and money this day! Pictures can be ordered. Price is from $25-40. We will do a cap/gown picture plus a '15 picture. Payment is due this day.
  • Graduation Practice is June 5 @ 9 am in the main gym. Breakfast will be served. Senior Class pictures will be delivered this day.
  • Inaugural Senior Class 2015 Panoramic Picture will be presented as your gift to CTHS at graduation, June 7. This will be the only graduating class picture to be permanently mounted in the main foyer.
  • Graduation is Sunday, June 7 @ 1:00 in the FWCC. Students must report to FWCC at 11 a.m. Bring your Cap/Tassel/Gown/lunch. Do not forget your cap/tassel!!!!
  • SNAG at Main Event is from 12-6 a.m.. You must ride the SNAG transportation bus to attend!!! Meet at CTHS @ 11 p.m.. It is FREE and tons of FUN!!!!!!!!! Laser Tag and all games, plus food throughout night is FREE!