The Roar

February 1, 2016

"The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack in will." ~ Vince Lombardi

Chatham's Chattering

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Once again, I want to thank our entire team at Harbins for Making IT Happen with the Innovation Fair. What an amazing night for our parents, their children, and YOU to celebrate teaching and learning. The best part about the entire evening was seeing the smiling faces of our students as they showed off their work and participated in some innovative activities. Thank you for what you do for children each and every day. I hope you enjoyed the evening as much as I did.

On Tuesday afternoon, you will be meeting with Trisha Connor in the Media Center to get your ticket to take your RBES Staff Perception surveys. We will have the labs and media center set up for you so that you can take the survey that afternoon and check it off your list! In addition to answering questions about the principal, you will also have the opportunity to answer questions about two assistant principals. Please select the two APs with whom you work most closely. Remember, your feedback matters.

Thank you for submitting your preference forms. We are busy using your input to plan for next year. Believe it or not, we will soon begin building class lists for next year!

As we continue to move forward, rapidly I might add, to the end of the year, it is essential that we keep our minds focused on what matters most - providing the best learning opportunities we can for each child in our care. In order to do that, we must continue to work as a team. Harbins IS our family, and together, we do make a difference.

I have to admit that one of my all time favorite movies is Dead Poets Society. I include the clip for you below (promise it is short!), and I ask you what will your verse be? Because you are a teacher, or because you are a person who works in the life of a child, it should be a beautiful one. We have the opportunity every single day to contribute to this world, and for that very reason, we are blessed.

It’s GREAT to be a Harbins Tiger!


What will your verse be?
Harbins Staff Calendar

Click the red button to go directly to the staff online calendar. The two weeks shown below is just a snapshot.

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Who Is Making IT Happen

  • Laurie Aldridge and Lisa Williams - thank you for your hard work with the yearbook!
  • Johnny - you managed to take care of every need on a night you were very short staffed - with a smile. Thank you to you AND your team who stepped it up when needed.

Conferences Needing a Spanish Speaking Translator

We have reserved a Spanish speaking translator for Tuesday, February 23rd and Friday, February 26th. Please complete the form below to let me know families that need a translator. Please respond by February 5th. We will send letters home the following week.


Splash Math Pilot Opportunity - All Teachers K-5

Splash Math is a popular online tool (& iPad app) for elementary students. We have the opportunity to pilot the program for the rest of the year, and have access to all of the paid features for free. Bridget & Chris have used it extensively with grades K-3 this year and love it. It is engaging, and helps teach students Common Core-aligned mathematics through visual modeling. To find out more, check out their website at

If you are interested in using the program at all with your students, please fill out the form below by Friday, February 5th. All teachers who respond will have accounts created for them and their students. There is no requirement that you use this program at all - it is completely optional. Please see Chris or Bridget with any questions.

Morning Coffee in the Cafe

The Cafe will no longer be providing Decafe Coffee in the mornings for the staff. We will still continue having regular coffee. Just wanted to let you know - we are wasting more than we are consuming. Remember the Keurig is available for your use in the workroom.

Review of K-12 Science and Social Studies GPS

A formal review process was conducted for the K-12 Science and Social Studies Georgia Performance Standards (GPS). The review process included several public survey opportunities from April 16, 2015, through September 15, 2015. Teacher and stakeholder survey results informed the revision process for drafting the K-12 Science and Social Studies Georgia Standards of Excellence (GSE). Working, Advisory, and Academic Review Committees representing K-12 Georgia public school teachers and education stakeholders from across the state made revisions to the K-12 Science and Social Studies GPS based on survey results. See the attached documents for an overview of the revision process.

On January 14, 2016, the State Board of Education granted permission to post the draft Science and Social Studies GSE for 60 days of public review and comment.

The surveys for both Science and Social Studies will be posted from January 15, 2016, through March 14, 2016. The survey opportunity will close on March 14, 2016, at 5:00 P.M. EST. We need your assistance in forwarding this communication and the links below to appropriate staff, PTA/PTO members, and other education stakeholders.

For science related information, contact Juan-Carlos Aguilar, Science Program Manager, via email at or via phone at 404-657-9072. For social studies related information, contact Shaun Owen, Social Studies Program Manager, via email at or via phone at 404-651-7271.

Use the following URL to access an overview of the Science and Social Studies revision process, draft standards and crosswalk documents, and survey links:

Create “I-Can” Statements using the rigor of the standard ( What kind of cognitive demand is needed beyond recall?)


3rd Grade AKS- 3MA.C17: Explain equivalence of fractions through reasoning with visual fraction models. Compare fractions by reasoning about their size

Low level I can recognize equivalent fractions through models.

More Rigorous I can explain relationships (compare) and represent equivalent fractions

using different visual models.

"A rising tide lifts all boats" - John F. Kennedy (made famous in the education world by Ron Clark )

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Components of effective STEM

1.Rigor- Rigorous interdisciplinary instruction with problem solving

relevance- Emphasis on real-world product development

3.Relationships- Collaborations with business and industry partners in the geographical area

4.Integration of Problem/Project-Based Learning and the Engineering Design Process

5. Using technology and literacy as a facilitator of student learning in a transformative instructional manner.

Special Education Bachelor's Degree Program information Session

Georgia Gwinnett College and GCPS have teamed up to offer an evening/weekend program that will allow GCPS paraprofessionals and school based employees (not including substitutes) to complete a bachelor’s degree and become certified in Special Education while continuing to work. The program is designed for candidates who have completed an associate’s degree or a minimum of 60 semester/90 quarter hours from a regionally accredited college, university or technical school. Additional information on the program, program requirements and admission criteria can be obtained during a Informational Session scheduled with representatives from Georgia Gwinnett College and GCPS.

When: Monday, February 15, 4:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Where: Instructional Support Center Building #200 Grayson Room

437 Old Peachtree Road

Suwanee, GA 30024

Please contact Patrice Pendergast at 678-301-6076 with any questions.

Gwinnett Digital Learning Conference 2016—Call for Proposals

This is an open request for proposals to present at the Gwinnett Digital Learning Conference on June 14, 2016 at the Instructional Support Center. The proposal form will be available beginning Monday, January 11, 2016. We hope that you will consider sharing your knowledge and expertise with your peers.Please note that choice session presentations will last approximately one hour. The deadline to submit presentation proposals is February 19, 2016.

We invite Teachers, Administrators, LSTCs, Media Specialists and Central Office Leaders to submit Digital Learning presentation proposals in any of the following areas:

Instructional Strategies

Communication and Collaboration

Digital Tools

Creativity and Innovation

Project-Based Learning


The proposal form is located in the employee portal. Below are directions to access the proposal form:

Log into the employee portal using your employee ID and portal password.

Go to the Tools tab and click on GDLC Proposals in the Media section.

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ESOL Endorsement Cohorts Starting March 1, 2016

EL Programs is opening up two one year cohorts of the ESOL Endorsement starting with the Culture course on March 1, 2016. Participants will continue with Linguistics in the fall, then Methods and Materials with an embedded practicum the following spring. Teachers who are enrolled in the program may apply to the GaPSC for the non-renewable ESOL credential and may provide ESOL support to EL students while they are completing the program.

What: 2016-2017 ESOL Endorsement

When: Dates and times vary

Where: ISC

Teachers must hold a clear renewable teaching certificate in order to apply.

Please identify teachers you wish to recommend for participation. Applications are due to the EL Programs Office no later than Friday, February 5. Principal recommendation is required as part of the application.

EL Director: Elizabeth Webb Phone: 678-301-7077

STEMCampATL - Spring 2016

GCPS is proud to host the 2nd STEMCampATL for metro-Atlanta STEM educators. STEMCampATL is designed to provide access to high quality, personalized professional learning for K-12 educators. Embracing the belief that fellow STEM educators can provde some of the most valuable professional development resources for their colleagues. This unconference learning will be driven by teachers for teachers. Come prepared to share and learn about innovative practices in STEM education.


When: Saturday March 12, 2016 8:00 - 12:00

Where: Peachtree Ridge HS

Registration will open on January 5th @

RFL Cupcake Challenge

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Dates That Lunch Monitors Are Not Available and Teachers Will Need to Eat in Cafe With Their Class

Teachers will need to eat with their class in the Cafe on the following dates due to no lunch monitors being available:

February 5th & 22nd

March 4th & 21st

April 18th & 28th

May 12th, 23rd, 24th & 25th

Classroom Spirit Award

Each Friday, you will go into the Google Chrome "Friday Spiritwear" file that Montine shared with each of you and enter the total number of students in your class that is wearing a red shirt or Harbins spirit wear. The class showing the most school spirit by wearing red or school spirit wear will get a "spirit paw" to hang on the door. Go Tigers! Show your school spirit and encourage your students to participate!

ABCD Awards

Please send your nominations to Chatham by January 21, 2015, for recognition of staff members who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that teaching and learning at Harbins are at the highest levels.

Roar Deadline

If you want to add something to the Roar, it must be sent to Montine by noon on Thursday of each week. If not turned in by Thursday at noon, it will have to be entered into the following week’s Roar. Thanks for your help!

Leaders in Learning

A Chrome file has been shared with each teacher, please go in to list your Leader in Learning each month when Montine sends out the notification email.

Staff Birthdays


Julie Wood 2/5

Gina Stegeman 2/7

Tim Husk 2/7

Through the Eyes of a Child

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