Redbird Roundup, Vol. 22

Friday, March 8, 2019

Principal's Greeting

Happy Friday Norris Staff!

I'm finishing this up on yet another snow day. Hard to believe we have had such a winter. Let's hope spring is amazing :) A massive shout-out to our custodians who are up here every snow day doing the sidewalks and clearing snow so we can get into the building safely.

I have put pictures from several events below, so please be sure to check out all the amazing highlights. We are going to have an amazing Friday before spring break and a great pep rally! I hope you enjoy your week off and come back refreshed for an amazing 4th quarter!

Have a great weekend!

Dr. Carr

Mark Your Calendars!

7th and 8th grade NSCAS testing: March 26 and 27

6th grade NSCAS testing: April 16 and 17

Just as our students' attendance is important these days, so is yours. We need you here to help provide a strong testing environment so our students can do their best. And I will have a few surprises for you on these days :)

March 18-22

March 11-15: Spring Break; Building Open 7-3.

Monday, March 18-Grades due, Season 4 Athletics Begin, Make-Up NSCAS Meeting with Carr after school in room 125

Tuesday, March 19-Student Support PD with Jacquie

Wednesday, March 20-Team PD-MTSS-B SAS Survey

Either Monday, March 18, Thursday, March 21 or Friday, March 22-Team Leads should schedule time with Collington to go over testing accommodations

Staff Introductions

This week we will get to know Brianna Greco and Greg Gruber!

Brianna Greco

Name: Brianna Greco

How many years have you been teaching? 12.5

What is your favorite thing about Norris Middle School? My favorite thing about Norris Middle School are the students and their ability to make life interesting and that I am never able to repeat the same day twice. Also, the staff because we are all in this together and it takes a very special person to be able to teach middle schoolers and I believe that the staff at Norris are here for the right reasons.

What’s your favorite indoor/outdoor activity? This may sound strange, but I one of my favorite indoor activities is organizing different parts of my house. My favorite outdoor activity is kayaking. Devin suggested we kayak down the hills through the snow.

What chore do you absolutely hate doing? I absolutely hate folding clothes. I don’t mind washing them, it is the folding and putting them away.

When you have 30 minutes of free-time, how do you pass the time? I take a nap or hang out with my mastiff, Ruby.

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? The first thing I would do, would be to hire a lawyer to help me navigate the path to not spend all the money right away.

What is something you learned in the last week? I learned that for a candle to burn that the wax from the candle is traveling up the wick of the candle into the flame and into the air.

If you could turn any activity into an Olympic sport, what would you have a good chance at winning medal for? I could turn packing a car into an Olympic Sport. How much stuff can you fit into a small tight space? How good are you at Tetris? I have mastered this challenge, but I may lose to my mother.

What TV show would you binge watch if you had the time? I would binge watch Big Little Lies (it is on my to do list for Spring Break). I just finished the book and was told that the TV series is very good and that the characters were cast perfectly!

What could you give a 40 minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation? I could give a 40-minute presentation on how to use OneNote.

Sweet or salty? And what food is your favorite in that category? I am a sucker for salty snacks and my favorite salty snack is Kettle Cooked Salt and Vinegar Chips.

Greg Gruber

Name: Greg “Woody” Gruber

How many years have you been in education? I have worked 39 years fulltime (1980 to present) and 2 years part-time (1972-74)

Favorite Thing about Norris: the people. Staff is great, and the kids keep me laughing.

Favourite quotes: “We must learn to live together as brothers, or perish as fools” -Dr. Martin Luther King

If I won the Lottery: take a day off to pray in gratitude & make lists……

Two Somethings I learned in the last week: Reminded again of the power of Kindness. Patsy Cline born in the Shenandoah Valley, Commonwealth of Virginia.

Olympic Sport: trashbarrel curling—rolling across lunchroom.

TV Show binge watch: all of the Star Trek shows except DS9

Forty minute presentation w/o preparation: Lakota Sundance. Wrote a book on working the Fire there.

Salty. Kettle chips, vinegar with sea salt. Addicted..

Big picture

Powerful Practices and Norris Staff and Students Seen and Heard


We are already starting to get preparations under way for our NSCAS testing. We have had two PD's this week, and will continue our work after spring break. Everyone has a role in helping our students do their best and show what they know on the test! Thank you for helping promote a great testing environment and encouraging our students!

Excellence in Art

Congrats to Ruth Rauda and Alex Craig who received several awards at the annual Scholastic Art Awards on Saturday, March 2. Their work has been on display at TAC. Our very own Mr. Heybrock also served as the guest emcee at the event!

Bancroft St. Market

Our students created postcards to sell at the Bancroft St. Market last weekend, and all funds raised went to the Lydia House. What a neat way for our students to create art for a great cause!

Destination Imagination

Ms. Boyer took our DI students to Wayne for the state competition last weekend. They have been working all year for this event and made a great showing!

Congrats Ms. Alexander!

Congrats to our very own Ms. Alexander, who officially has Friday, March 1 named after here in the City of Omaha! Ms. Alexander has led quite a life, from Air Force, to cancer survivor, single mother, and leader at her church. What an incredible honor!


Our GSA is taking on some exciting projects. Ms. Hansen and Ms. Ferris attended the Time to Thrive Conference and came back with some amazing resources for this group. They will be collaborating with South High's GSA in April, and helping facilitate the Day of Silence (more info to come). Thanks to these amazing sponsors for their work with this group!

City Wrestling

Hosting the City Wrestling Tournament is no small job. So many visitors came into our building on Thursday and Friday of last week, and it takes the help of so many to make this event go as smoothly as it does. Great job and thank you to all those who helped.

High School Registration

Our 4 counselors did an amazing job helping our nearly 500 8th graders get registered for high school classes. Whereas middle school schedules are typically created in the summer, most high school schedules are done in early spring. This takes a ton of organization and coordination, and support from everyone. Thank you!

Spirit Week!

Thanks to StuCo for an amazing Spirit Week! I know everyone was bummed they couldn't wear their Hawkeye gear on Thursday. Thank you for all your participation!

Final Thought

We talked about some pretty heavy stuff in terms of our achievement on Monday at our faculty workshop. We have to move achievement. We have to move achievement. We have to move achievement. There must be a sense of urgency in us to help our students succeed, and we know they can do it. And I know WE can do it. We are committed to this school and our mission. We are committed to our kids and want what's best for them, and want them to be successful. We can do this. We are the difference makers.