Hillcrest Staff ARTery

We are the heART of Hillcrest!

The week of January 25th - 29th

Bus Duty:

AM - Lee, Cory & Cici

PM - Jody, Amy W. & Anna

Treats: Jeanne, Caroline & Mrs. Brue

Word of the Week: Patience


Monday, January 25th - NO SCHOOL - Grading Day



  • 8:00 - 10:00 Standards Presentation
  • 10:00 - 11:00 Technology Presentation
  • 11:00 - 12:00 Lunch
  • 12:00 - 2:00 Grading / Report Cards (on your own)

  • 2:00 - 2:30 Travel Time

  • 2:30 - 3:30 PLC Time (choice of the teachers)

Tuesday, January 26TH (Day 2)

  • 8:20 - 9:00 - Artful Learning Committee - Conf. room

Wednesday, January 27th ( Day 3)

  • 8:20 - 9:00 - SWIM team meeting/Caroline's room

Thursday, January 28th (Day 1)

Friday, January 29th (Day 2)

  • 8:20 - 9:00 - BLT Meeting
  • 3:15 - Rally in the Lunchroom
  • Report Cards go home

Upcoming Events

February is "I Love to Read" month!!!

February 2nd - Kinder Registration

February 9th - PTSA Meeting - 6:30/Media Center

February 12th - Jump Rope for Heart - Gym

February 15th - President's Day - NO SCHOOL

Staff Meeting Schedule (Topics)

1/19 - Close Reading w/Rachel Gens (3 of 4)

2/2 - Achievement Gap at HC

2/16 - Planning for SY17

3/1 - TBD

Hillcrest Variety Show (change of date and new details)

The Hillcrest Variety show will be on May 20th. Dress rehearsal will be on the 19th.

  • This year students in 2nd - 5th grade may participate.
  • Next year (SY17) we will be adjusting participation to be 3rd - 5th grade.

Coaches Corner

Providing real-world, relevant connections to content can support students in understanding why what they are learning is important.

The Hennepin County public library system has lots of free resources that can be used by you and your students. Many of them provide real-life information about topics we teach which can help add relevancy to lessons. All you need to access them is a library card. You and your students can get one for free!

Apply for a Hennepin County Library Card here!

Resources from hclib.org

NoveList K-8 Plus

Resources for finding fiction and nonfiction titles for children and teens by topic, genre, grade level, and Lexile score. Includes read-alikes, discussion guides, reviews and articles.


Resources for science exploration and student research support. Includes nonfiction articles with read aloud option, videos, current events, career information, and experiments.


Full-text articles about people, places, animals, history, and more. Includes images and a dictionary.

Something About the Author

Articles and images detailing the lives and works of children's and teens' authors and illustrators.


Scholastic True Books on nonfiction topics. Projects, lessons, and activities help build knowledge on people, places, history, science, and nature.

Junior Reference Collection

Full-text articles about people, places, history, science, and more. Includes audio files, video, images, and maps.

Kids InfoBits

Full-text articles from magazines, newspapers, and reference books about current events, people, places, animals, history and more.

Kids Search

Full-text articles from magazines, newspapers, and reference books about current events, people, places, animals, history and more. Includes primary sources, images and maps.


Free one-to-one live homework help online from qualified tutors for grades 3-12. Live assistance available every day from 1-11 p.m.; experts also review and respond to submitted questions and papers.


Video storybooks and online nonfiction books for young readers. Includes streaming video, games and educator resources.


United States history and current events from the colonial era through today. Includes online nonfiction books, articles, videos, and project ideas.

Amazing Animals of the World

Encyclopedia with information and images on animals from aardvarks to zebras.

America the Beautiful

State history and current events. Includes images, maps, an almanac, timelines, quizzes and games, and biographies.

TumbleBook library

Animated story books and chapter books with highlighted text. Also includes graphic novels, nonfiction books and videos, puzzles, and games. Some titles in Spanish and French.

World Book Kids

Full-text articles on people, places, science, animals, history, and more. Includes videos, images, audio files, science projects, maps, and games.

Tech Team Information

September Topics

Where will printing happen?

  • Bring students to the lab

  • Check out Macbook Air cart

  • Individuals log in to classroom

  • Publishing & sharing work as alternates - Ask: Do they really need to print it?

Using The BPS HUB

  • Students need training on logging in and reading the Hub planner, writing notes.

  • It’s important to remember that the Hub’s audience is both students & parents.

October Topics

When are we sending CBs home?

  • Face-to-face distribution of devices for grades 3-5.

  • This will happen via a separate Curriculum Night/Chromebook Open House in September 2016. Specific date to be determined.

Action item: All grade levels should add headphones to Fall 2016 school supply list.

Chromebook Cases

  • Kids will be provided a charger, chromebook, case and a luggage tag

  • Luggage tags will have Student Name, Homeroom, Color coded label for Grade level, perhaps a personalized photo snippet for HC tags

Where won’t Chromebooks go in our building?

Chromebooks will not go to:

  • lunch

  • bathroom

  • locker rooms

  • bus

Action Items:

  • Communicate policy with our bus drivers and patrols.

November Topics

How will we prepare students to have devices?

  • 2nd graders will have a chromebook experience this spring.

  • Digital Passport curriculum for digital citizenship, also this spring.

  • Chromebook and iPad bootcamp will be developed and taught.

How will we prepare teachers to have devices?

  • Beginning in January, staff will have regular professional development focused on technology and digitization. January 25th, to be precise!

December Topics

Families without internet.

  • Students will be taught to use offline mode and a Chrome Extension called Pocket. It is then their job to pack up their digital backpack at the end of the day, same as a physical backpack. These students may need specific time to do so.

  • Hot spot pucks will be available as a short-term solution and on a very limited basis. The pucks will be available to everyone at Hillcrest with a check out period of two weeks. Pucks are very expensive and not feasible as a blanket solution, so communicating with families who might fall in this category is very important, in order to connect them with the district-suggested resources.

Hillcrest third grade class from 2014-15 published in COMPAS anthology

Lee's third grade class from last year will have their work published in Punch at the Wild Tornado, an anthology featuring the best student writing from the COMPAS Arts Education program. The students and their families are invited to a publication celebration at 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 12, at St. Paul’s Landmark Center.

Lee's class, under the guidance of COMPAS’s Charlie Maguire, created an original song about the sun, moon and stars titled “Way Up In The Sky.” The exercise put to work lessons from the class’s “discovery” Artful Learning unit.

COMPAS artist residencies were funded through a Minnesota State Arts Board (MSAB) grant, which helped provide Artful Learning experiences at each grade level (K-5). Hillcrest is an MSAB grant recipient again this year.

Visit www.compas.org to learn more about the program.

Building Winter and Break Reminders

Winter is here . . .

  • Please make sure students take their coats and boots home regularly, so that the hall can be kept clean.
  • All boots should be put up off the floor at the end of the day (on top of hooks or in lockers).
  • Please make sure that students stomp and wipe their feet before entering the hallways.

Personal Leave Requests Now Approved by Principal

Starting December 1st all principals will be approving personal leave requests. Be sure to submit your leave requests through MyLeave in MyView (TIES). If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. [Note - you do not need to ask Calvin in person. Unless you feel that you need to do so.]

Our weekly staff newsletter!

This newsletter will come to you every Friday afternoon for the upcoming week. If you have any information, small business items, or events to share, please email the title, narrative, and specifics to Jane or Calvin.