Mustang Roundup

December 2015

Principal's Pen

Dear Families,

Winter Break is quickly approaching. Thank you so much for the support that you give your children and our school! We appreciate you and all you do. Please see the reminders below.

~December 7-11

Reindeer's Den (All Proceeds go towards helping 30 or more families in need)

~December 8

PTO Meeting 6:00

~December 8

Mount Holly will host its 2nd annual Literacy night

‘Twas the Night before Christmas


During the course of the event, we will celebrate with

Stories of the Season, told by guest readers,a seasonal Art activity, Musical interludes performed by Mount Holly’s 2nd, 4th and 5th grade students, and the ever popular Refreshments and Photo Booth.

We hope you’ll kick off the Holiday Season by placing this on your calendars and joining us for the festivities.

~December 14

Pictures with Santa ($3/ child)

~December 18

Box Tops Due

~December 21-Janauary 4, 2016

Winter Break (No School for Students)

I hope you have a great Winter Break!

Children First,

Dr. Barnes

Mrs. Greene's Class

We have one more trip in coordination with Rock Hill Parks and Recreation! Don’t forget Thursday, December 3rd!

December 11th is our annual district trip to the movies for all exceptional needs classrooms. More information will be coming home soon.

Also, remember to remind your child about the upcoming breaks. Sometimes big changes in schedules make for anxiety and changes in behavior.

We have been talking about “big kid” concepts. Ask your child about alliteration (when multiple words in a phrase begin with the same sound), rotation (the Earth is always moving).


Wow! We can’t believe it’s already December! Thank you so much to the family members who were able to come to the Lunch and Learn and the Thanksgiving Play. The children loved having you all in our classrooms and seeing their work. They worked extra hard on their writing pieces along with the play. We hope you enjoyed these special times as much as they did!

We have a lot of activities going on in the month of December so be sure to hang on to your newsletter to refer back to!

  • December 7-11th – Reindeer’s Den (send money for your child to shop for gifts)
  • December 8th – Literacy Night (Be sure to come by your child’s classroom before you leave to get your Christmas gift from your child and their teacher)
  • December 14th – Santa Pictures ($3 for your child to take a picture with Santa here at school and you can skip the long lines at the mall)
  • December 18th – Polar Express Day (children can wear their pajamas to school)

In class we are continuing to work hard to finish the 2nd nine weeks out strong. You can find a list below of things to work with your child on at home;

- Read every night

- Homework every night

- Addition and Subtraction story problems (ex: Mrs. Craven had 3 cookies and Ms. Hardin gives her 3 more. How many cookies do I have in all now?)

- Writing simple sentences about a topic

- Practice letter sounds in alphabetical sequence and out of sequence

- Read and write word wall words

- Tying shoes

- Counting objects using 1 to 1 touch

- Comparing two numbers, which one is greater, less, or are the numbers equal

Again, thank you for your constant support and help in your child’s education. Be sure to check our canvas link for helpful ideas in all content areas. It is:

First Grade

First Grade Happenings

We are excited about our upcoming field study to the York County Museum on December 10th. Please remember to sign your student’s permission form, check if your student will bring a lunch from home or if he/she will eat a school bagged lunch, and send in the $10.00 fee by December 3. The Polar Express will be rolling into our school on December 18th. Your student may wear appropriate pajamas on this day as we “ride” the express and listen to the Polar Express story.

During the break, please continue to work with your student in learning how to tie his/her shoes. Also, please label your student’s coat. There is a collection of coats, jackets, sweaters, and hoodies in our lost and found. Please continue to work with your student as he/she is learning; to spell number words to twenty, learning decade numbers through 50, and recognizing Kindergarten and First Grade high frequency words.

Second Grade

The second nine weeks are flying by with our little Mustangs! We have had so much fun diving in to non-fiction books these past few weeks! The students have been working hard on learning HOW to use non-fiction text features to understand topics better, as well as, identifying WHY AUTHORS EVEN WRITE non-fiction. As you know, we have been writing our own non-fiction by conducting experiments and writing science lab reports. We have learned that it is important for scientists to write detailed lab reports so others could re-create the same experiment. We are proud of how the students now know the importance of how forces affect motion and how gravity affects objects. We’ve had a lot of fun with our hands-on experiments!

Our mathematicians have been working very hard on using place value to compare numbers and mentally add and subtract tens and hundreds starting at ANY number. The students are getting better at justifying their thinking too. We are now working hard on our measurement unit on time. Please continue to practice with your child on reading an analog clock to the 5 minute interval. We will soon be working on multi-step word problems.

So get your seat belt ready…we are in for an exciting ride these next few weeks! Keep up the hard work.

Third Grade

Our third graders have had a very busy fall! We are becoming multiplication masters and division dominators in math! We are working to improve our knowledge of both through solving word problems and problematic tasks in our math workshop. Students are working on varied reading skills in order to improve their vocabulary and comprehension. We will be completing running records on students in order to see determine improvement in reading, so keep reading daily! Our informational writing unit will come to a close soon. We have been collecting factual information on our three rock types to integrate with Science. To pull this all together, we are adding an introductory paragraph and conclusion and preparing to publish a five paragraph piece! We are continuing to practice proofreading our own work and to improve grammar skills within our writing as well. In Social Studies, we are completing our unit on Native Americans and their relationship with European settlers. The excursion to Camp Cherokee was an AWESOME experience for our Third graders. The students hiked and explored the adventurous Beaver Dam Trail! Throughout their hike of the trail, they put their observational skills to work. They identified evidence of a number of concepts they've learned this year such as weathering, erosion, and deposition. During this field experience, students were able to get their hands quite dirty! They collected mud samples that were packed with live macroorganisms! They then sifted through the mud, in search of those macroorganisms. This experience provided an excellent introduction to a number of concepts we will study later this year such as animal habitats and both physical and behavioral adaptations.

Fourth Grade

Fourth Grade is getting Holly Jolly and ready for some December learning! We are moving right along in math straight into Division. We will apply multiplication skills to learn strategies for long division with and without remainders. Be sure you keep studying your facts you must know them to do these skills! In science we are continuing our study of animals. After we wrap up the study of Biomes we will move on towards animal adaptations and instincts. In Social Studies we next learn about the French and Indian War and how this conflict was one the many causes leading to the American Revolution. We are tying writing to science and math! We will begin Informational Writing and each student has been given a specific animal to research in school and write about in class. We are also continuing to work on justification writing instruction in math to further explanations for answers. In reading we are conducting Fountas and Pinnell testing to see the progression of reading levels. Please look for your child’s new reading level on their 2nd 9 week’s report card. From the entire fourth grade team we wish your child and family a safe, happy, relaxing and prosperous holiday season!

Fifth Grade

Our 5th Graders are working very hard as scientists, authors, and mathematicians. We have been working hard to multiply multi-digit numbers and are beginning to explore multiplying decimal numbers using models. Be sure to continue to encourage your child to review their basic multiplication facts. Also, our Westward Expansion unit has come to an end and we are on the road to learning about the Industrial Revolution. Check out our Westward Expansion narratives in the near future, which depict what life was like as a Cowboy, Native American, Miner, Homesteader, or Rancher. Finally, our field trip to the York County Museum was very pleasant. This trip gave us great information about the importance of recycling and how recycling impacts our environment. We are now finished with our Mixtures and Solutions unit and are now moving forward with learning about the formation of landforms. As the year goes on, continue to encourage reading at home as much as possible. As always, we thank you for your continued support!


On November 20th, 2015, Winthrop University will host the Graduate Student Art Education show in the Lewandowski Gallery. The show celebrates Georgia O’Keeffe, one of the most important and influential American artists of the 20th century, and her time spent in South Carolina as an art educator. Ms. Ham and Mr. Rhodes have discussed Mrs. O’Keeffe and her works with the fourth graders, and have used her specific shape making influences and subject matter with them to create beautiful 3D sculptures, and still life paintings based on those sculptures. The show, Start Me On My Way: Learning from Georgia O’Keeffe, will run from November 20th to December 18th of 2015.

The following student artists will have art work on display in this exhibition.

Zosh Walker

JaMya White

Keith Wind

Meeya Williams

Cohen Dickson

Brysen Lane

EJ Erby

Kateleigh Crocker

Gabe Alfred

Jy’ra Carothers

Lexie Cornwell

Jahiem Crawford

Xavier Vanover

Cameron Rector

ShonDarius Gaines

Joey Shuler

Alix Cunningham

Blake Shaver

Cameron Hefner

Erin Huff

Tiffany Trimmer

Ja’mond Carothers

Si McCullough

Amanda Osborn

Media Center

What a busy season we have had in the Mt. Holly library so far! It has been fantastic to have books flying off the shelves and see our kids so excited about reading!

· More than 100 students participated in the Read Your Way to the Big Game Contest!

· Morning Readers program is in full swing with fourth and fifth grade students.

· Battle of the Books students are reading like crazy – they can take their follow up quizzes on Canvas!

· Lunch Bunch (5th grade girls) is wrapping up. We read the “tug at your heart” novel The Lottery Rose (Irene Hunt).

· Next up: Fourth grade girls: Revenge of the Christmas Angels

· Many kids have also participated in USC Basketball Reading program – tickets will be arriving in late December/early January

· Stay tuned for some very exciting news : One School, One Book!

*Important: please go to the following link to participate in a VERY brief survey about Reading Stamina – this will help me plan and assist students as they prepare for spring testing. This is an anonymous survey. Thank you in advance.


During the month of November, our guidance lessons were focused on being thankful and giving to others. Third, fourth and fifth grade students had the opportunity to give back to our Armed Forces. We partnered with the Red Cross for our 3rd year to help with Holiday Mail for Heroes, an initiative designed to provide for those men and women serving our country that may not get to come home for the holiday season. Students created cards for our Armed Forces, thanking them for their service and wishing them a happy holiday season. Additionally, Mount Holly’s Student Council hosted a food drive to collect items for the Rock Hill Dream Center. We are very proud of the way our students have given back to our community! Ask your students to share with you what they are grateful for!

Best wishes for a happy holiday season!!

Kaci Kawakami

School Counselor


Office: 803.985.1668

Physical Education

Did you know that people, including kids, are more motivated to exercise when they know that they are only performing something for a short period of time? Knowing this can help motivate you to be more active over the holiday season!

Here are some things to consider:

· Time yourself or your kids for 30 second intervals for any exercise

· Go for a walk/run where you run for 30 seconds and walk for 1 minute

· Remember that you always carry your body weight with you, so use it for exercise


· Make exercise a game for competition for you and your child

· Do push-ups or jumping jacks during commercial breaks

· Use your devise for music to motivate you to move

· Dancing counts as exercise

· Eat like you are being held accountable for every bite!:)


Music is in the air! Our 2nd, 4th and 5th graders are busy preparing for their performances for our 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Mark you calendars and come enjoy the entertainment, Tuesday, December 8 at 6:30, following the PTO meeting at 6:00.

Terrific Kids for October

Congratulations the following students:

Jacobi Kennington
Savannah Cornwell
Kaidyn Crenshaw
J'Den Elliot
Katie Freeman
Zion Hemphill
Bayleigh Johnson
Allie Hosenfeld
Zy'Juan Blackmon
Makenzie McElrath
Jayla Jackson
Avery Montmarquet
Jacob Bailey
Arrianna Rico-Miller
Hailey Ackerman
Addy Edwards
Laila Jackson
Isaiah Mayes
Randall Hasket
Emma Mozingo
Brysen Lane
Thomas Tran
Jamin Hattem
Tyler Blevins
Cohen Campbell