Seven Hills Elementary News

A Home-School Connection

January 25, 2018

Congratulations Seven Hills Employees of The Year!

We are honored and proud to announce the 2018 Seven Hills Employees of the Year!
  • Exemplar Educator: Mariah Zeigler, 5th Grade
  • Administrative Support Employee of the Year: Dora Chazarreta, Office Staff
  • Instructional Support Employee of the Year: Marina Leal, Pre-K

Note: Ms. Dora was unavailable for a photo

We are also honored and proud to share with you the staff nominated by their peers, students, and/or parents for Exemplar Educator consideration:

  • Whitney Beck, Kindergarten
  • Amy Davis, Kindergarten
  • Barbara Reyes, Kindergarten
  • Felicia Hall, Third Grade
  • Kevyn Austin, Fourth Grade
  • Hayley Sample, CIT

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7 Hills READS Launched This Week!

Thank you 7 Hills PTA for purchasing a book for EVERY 7 Hills Star Leader!

Reading aloud is an enjoyable way for students to develop the knowledge and skills required for future success as learners and leaders. Through a read aloud, students are exposed to new vocabulary, are able to see good reading skills being modeled, and are able to engage in rich discussion about a variety of topics. It is a way to develop critical thinking skills and stretch understanding. Reading aloud to children helps establish foundational reading skills, including:

· Listening comprehension

· Vocabulary development

· Fluency and stamina

· Imagination and problem solving

The read aloud is an important part of the instructional program at Seven Hills, and students are provided a variety of opportunities to listen to the sharing of wonderful stories and books. Because we believe that the read aloud is such an important part of student achievement and success, we are excited to continue the reading program we began last year. 7 Hills READS is a home-school-community reading program, inviting families to engage in a common read aloud with their students.

Here’s how it works:

  • All students in grades Pre-K—5th will receive a copy of Adventures of a South Pole Pig by Chris Kurtz.
  • During a time period of 12 weeks, students will be given a packet with chapters to read and activities for the family. This packet will be in the STAR binder so that it doesn’t get lost. Activities will focus on reading skills and strategies, as well as the 7 Habits of Happy Kids.
  • Families will read the designated chapters as a family. Older siblings can read to younger students. Students and parents can take turns reading. There are so many options!
  • Periodically, chapters will be read at school in classrooms, in the library, during lunch, and more!
  • Families may decide to read the entire book first, then reread the chapters each month to complete the activities. Rereading text supports vocabulary development, fluency, and comprehension skills.
  • Students can turn in activities completed for Spirit Sticks. For every 3 activities from the packet a family completes during the 12 weeks, they will be given a Spirit Stick. Bring the activities to the library when completed.
  • Once the book is completed, it can be recorded on each student Speeding to Read tracker!

We hope that you will enjoy spending time with your child and sharing the enjoyment of a good book! Adventures of a South Pole Pig is full of great life lessons and connections to the 7 Habits of Happy Kids! There is also a a great opportunity to make connections between this book and the book from last year, Charlotte’s Web.

Families are invited to share their reading on social media using the hashtags, #7HillsREADS and #7HillsLEADS.

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Seven Hills Elementary Has BIG News:

Seven Hills Elementary has so much to be proud of! In August of 2016, Seven Hills Elementary opened its doors as a designated Leader in Me school, and we have continued our journey this year with the same enthusiasm and commitment from staff, students, and parents. This year we have continued to develop a deep understanding of the 7 Habits of Happy Kids, learning how the skills and strategies apply to school and personal lives and how the habits help shape each one of us as unique leaders. We have also focused on connecting the leadership principles to academics by creating and tracking progress on our Wildly Important Goals. Our Stars have shown tremendous growth in leadership and character because of The Leader in Me!

Part of sustaining the momentum and excitement with The Leader in Me involves staff sharpening the saw through different professional learning opportunities with Franklin Covey. One of the biggest events of the year is the annual Leader in Me Symposium. This year, Symposium will be held in Dallas on February 1st and 2nd. During this event, attendees gather to listen and share their experiences with The Leader in Me. Part of Symposium includes breakout learning sessions presented by Leader in Me schools and Franklin Covey. Symposium also includes site visits to local Leader in Me schools. On day two of the conference, attendees board buses to other Leader in Me schools to see leadership in action!

We are so proud, honored and positively ECSTATIC to share our BIG NEWS!! Seven Hills applied for some of these honors and we were chosen to share our story in the following ways:

  • Seven Hills was selected as a Symposium school site visit! On Feb. 2nd, we will open our doors to approximately 50 guests in the morning. The school tour is an opportunity for our students and staff to showcase all that we have accomplished as a Leader in Me school. This is the second year that Seven Hills has been honored to participate in this way!
  • We were selected for student leadership opportunities at Symposium! Two members of out Student Lighthouse Team will deliver opening speeches to kick off the morning and afternoon general sessions. One of these students will also participate in a student panel, answering audience questions about their leadership journey.
  • Mrs. Blackburn, Mrs. Russell, Mrs. Sample, Mrs. Zeigler, and Ms. Q were selected to present breakout sessions for conference attendees! We will present on a variety of topics including Sharpen the Saw Clubs, how we use the 7 Habits at 7 Hills, and how we are moving mountains with goal setting. We are excited to be virtually showcasing student voice in our sessions this year!
  • Mrs. Blackburn was invited to speak on an educator panel at Symposium! This is an opportunity to share the campus journey with The Leader in Me, highlighting our greatest successes! Our story is impressive, and it is an honor to have been invited to participate on this panel.

We hope that you are as excited as we are about our big news! We are looking forward to continuing to represent our school community in such a public and positive way. We know that “GREAT happens here,” and we cannot wait to share the greatness with others!

Please note, we will be asking that all students wear their Seven Hills “Oh, the Places I’ll LEAD” shirts on Friday, February 2, 2018 for the Symposium site visit.

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PTA Selling Valentine Grams:

Each year, Seven Hills Elementary PTA provides an opportunity for students to participate in sending Valentine Grams to their fellow students, teachers and staff members. The kids love getting the Valentine Grams from their friends and this also serves as a fundraiser for the 5th Grade Graduation Celebration.

If your student would like to participate, please fill out the form and return it with the money attached (cash or checks made out to Seven Hills PTA) by February 2nd. The cost of each Valentine Gram is $1.00 and the recipients will receive the gram as well as candy. The Valentine Grams will be delivered during the class parties on Feb. 9th.

When filling out the forms, please ask your student to keep in mind that there are possibly students in their class who may not usually receive very many Valentine Grams and what a blessing it would be for them to receive one from your child.

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Family Leadership Night Was AMAZING!

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Congratulations to Our Turn 2 Winners!

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Speeding to Read Update:

Our campus Wildly Important Goal is that all students will meet or exceed end of year expectations in reading. In order to reach this goal, Seven Hills Leaders need to be reading every day! Speeding to Read is a fun way to help students get excited about reading and help students reach their goals. We are in turn 3. Please make sure your child is reading at home and logging their books. Reading logs should be in STAR folders. If you need a new log, please contact your child's teacher.

  • For Turns 2, 3 and 4, the minimum goal is 25 books per turn for Kindergarten–2nd-grade students and six (6) chapter books for 3rd–5th-grade students.

We encourage students to set high goals and read over the minimum number of books each turn. We had many students read over the minimum and we’d like even more this time! We are in turn 3. Turn 2 standings will be announced after the winter break. Make sure you are reading over the break. Turn 3 ends on March 2.

Note: Each turn starts over with the count of books. The books read in turn 1 do not count in turn 2.

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Save the Date:

Symposium Practice with Student Lighthouse Team

  • Tuesday, January 30 2:00 pm

The Leader in Me Symposium Leadership Day

  • Friday, February 2 (students wear red, "Oh, the Places I'll LEAD" shirts)

Valentine's Day Parties:

  • Friday, February 9 (more details coming soon)

PVE/7Hills Father Daughter Dance:

  • Saturday, February 10 6:00 pm at Prairie View Elementary

NISD Early Release Day:

  • Friday, February 16

NISD Bad Weather Make-Up Day:

  • Monday, February 19

Spring Picture Day:

  • Wednesday, February 21

Open House and Leadership Expo:

  • Tuesday, March 6, 6:00 - 7:30 pm

Campus Information and Reminders:

  • Running Club will take a winter break after Reindeer Romp. It will resume after Spring Break.

  • School Doors Open and Staff Are On Duty at 7:20 am: Please remember that students should not be dropped off at school before the doors open and staff are on duty at 7:20 am.
  • The safety and security of students, staff, and visitors is a priority. All visitors must sign-in with the front office using the Raptor system to receive a visitor badge. Any visitor without a badge will be redirected to the front office. Please note that we have a new and improved Raptor system for signing our visitors and volunteers in at Seven Hills. All guests and volunteers will be required to scan their ID on their first visit to school this year. Thank you in advance for your patience.
  • Student Absences: Please contact the school office if your child will be absent from school. This helps us verify our overall attendance for the day and properly account for all students. When your child returns to school after an absence, please be sure to send a note explaining the reason for the absences.

NISD Information:

See What’s Going on in Our Communities

As a service to our families, the district provides the Community Folder for non-school groups or organizations to post information that may be of interest or a benefit to students and families. Click here to see approved flyers.

NISD Seeks Feedback on the 2018 - 2019 Calendar:

Northwest ISD requests community feedback on the 2018-2019 school calendar options by completing an online survey. The Northwest ISD District Education Improvement Council (DEIC), made up of parents, teachers and community members, develops and submits calendar option(s) for the upcoming school year with additional input from staff, parents and community to the NISD Board of Trustees. The DEIC is providing two options for the 2018-2019 school calendar. Calendar Option One is similar to the current school year’s calendar, includes a 440-minute school day, with three bad weather days built into the calendar. Calendar Option Two is a 445-minute school day, adding five minutes to the end of the instructional day and the first day of school would begin on a Tuesday instead of a Monday.

The online survey begins January 23 and will be available through February 5. Community and staff may go to to view the calendars, a list of frequently asked questions and to complete the survey with their preferred calendar option. Results will be reviewed by the DEIC in February. The board is expected to vote on the final school calendars prior to Spring Break.

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