Preparing for 9th Grade

January 4, 2016 Edition

Tips for 9th Grade Success from Mr. Hawthorne

Mr. Hawthorne teaches 9th grade Civics - He is one of our two Civics teachers.



Show up. Do your own work. Focus on learning first and grades second. (Good grades and other forms of academic success will follow if you do this.) Submit assignments on time, not because it will get you more points, but because staying on top of your work will reduce your stress and enable you to learn in a more efficient and productive manner. Study. Actually study. To study is to do something with the information you want to learn. Rewrite it; organize it; outline it; make flash cards from it; play games with it - whatever works.


Prioritize the classes that are most important to you, your life, and your future. All learning is important, but learning how to prioritize your time is a skill that seems to become more and more crucial every day. On that note: get involved in at least one thing, an activity, a sport, a paying job, volunteer work - something outside the classroom! Ironically, the busier you are, the better you will become at time management. Learn how to see the big picture. Remember that you are young, and you will likely change your mind about your future many times between now and and adulthood. Be open minded to all that is out there. Do not lock any doors of opportunity even if it looks like the door leads to a place you would never want to visit, and never resist an opportunity because you fear you will fail if you try. The person you are today is not the person you will always be. This truth can be daunting and refreshing. View high school as a rebirth, an opportunity to learn new things, meet new friends and create meaningful experiences now and in your future.


Mr. Hawthorne

9th Grade Civics Teacher

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8th Grade Parents Meeting Set for January 25, 2016

The PGHS Counselors will be hosting an information session on HS scheduling for all 8th grade parents on Monday, January 25, 2016 at 6:30 p.m. in the HS Cafeteria. During this session, parents will learn about high school courses, scheduling, and course selection. Plus, the School Counselors will provide parents with important updates to guide parents and students in scheduling for the 2016/2017 school year.

AP/Dual Enrollment/STEAM Night at PGHS

Attention all 8th, 9th, 10th, and 11th Grade Students and Parents - Be sure to reserve Thursday, February 4, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. (HS Cafeteria) as an opportunity to learn more about HS Scheduling opportunities in AP/Dual Enrollment/STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) courses for the 2016-2017 school year. Representatives from Montgomery County Community College will be available along with the Western Center. This is the perfect opportunity for parents and students to learn about the benefits of Advanced Placement Courses and how students can earn college credit while attending high school.

Success in 9th Grade

The excerpt below is written by 9th Grade English Teacher, Dr. Mays-Coleman


In their article “ERS Focus on Helping Students Transition to High School,” Legters and Kerr write, “The beginning of high school is a critical time for students. Research shows that making a successful transition to high school can help students form lasting attachments to school and increase students’ likelihood of graduating." As a teacher of ninth graders for many years, I have found this to be very true. Therefore, in order to prepare for this crucial time, I have found that students should come to the high school with the following understandings:


Students need to be positive and motivated.

Students need to be focused on a goal(s).

Students need to ask for help when needed.

Students need to possess a work ethic.

Students need to work with others in order to ensure the success of all. Students need to listen to those teachers and fellow students that they interact with each day rather than electronic devices.


Recognizing these concepts as necessary, possessing an open mind, and appreciating the work of those involved in student success will help make this challenging time more favorable.


Dr. Mays-Coleman, 9th Grade English Teacher

Western Montgomery Career and Technology Center

Starting with the current school year, the Western Center opened up an exploratory program for ninth grade students. This program is designed for students to glean a sampling of two programs at the Western Center. If your son or daughter is interested in this program, please contact your Middle School Guidance Counselor to see if your child is eligible for the program. Check out more about the Western Center at http://www.westerncenter.org/Page/1

Calendar for 9th Grade Scheduling

Below is a schedule that begins scheduling classes for high school (9th Grade) - The Middle School Counseling team will be meeting with students on various occasions to guide students through the 9th grade scheduling process. Plus, a parent information night will be held on Monday, January 25, 2016 at 6:30 p.m. in the HS Cafeteria.


1/25: 8th grade assembly with HS counselors during the school day; parent info night that evening- 6:30pm in the HS Cafeteria


1/26: MS counselors meet with 7/8 team in math classes (Mr. Liebel’s students.)


1/28: MS counselors meet with 8-1 team in math classes (Mr. Bailey’s students.)


1/29: MS counselors meet with 8-2 team in math classes (Mrs. Kelly’s student.)


2/2- MS counselors meet with students in Mrs. Davis’ math classes.


2/4 - HS presents AP/Dual Enrollment/STEAM Night for Parents and Students to learn more about high school courses.


Starting 2/2 and through the next several weeks: MS counselors have short 1:1 meetings with 8th graders to go over class selections and enter those selections on powerschool.


3/1/16 - All course selections must be entered

Sign Up for Updates about High School

Communication with parents and students is vital as we support students through the transition of high school. Please sign up for Remind updates by either going to the link below or by following the directions in the graphic below.


Sign Up for Remind Alerts for the Class of 2020 by Clicking HERE


This Remind Class will be used throughout your son/daughter's entire high school career for important updates about class events, field trips, and other important items.

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Below are the HS School Counselors - All 8th Graders Should Meet with Mrs. Kleinfeltor or Mr. Haupt for Scheduling 9th Grade Courses