Anchor Weekly

A newsletter for Alta Vista Staff~Week of October 21, 2019

Don't Forget! Next Week's Calendar

  • 2nd Grade GT Testing ALL WEEK of October 21
  • PK Professional Development on Monday, October 21 at 4 pm (See flier)
  • Mandatory Benefits Enrollment Individual Meeting in Library on Wednesday, October 23 from 7:45-3:45
  • Foundations Behavior Team Meeting on Wednesday, October 23 from 8am-4pm (Minimum Behavior Team presence on campus)
  • MELA Testing (Select K/1 Students) on Wednesday, October 23 at 8:30-9:30 am
  • Fall Tech Series: SeeSaw presented by Haskett & A. Martinez on Wednesday, October 23 at 3:40 pm in Library
  • Math PLC on Thursday, October 24
  • PK Professional Development on Thursday, October 24 at 4 pm (See flier)
  • Tribe Buddy Day on Friday, October 25
  • Staff/Students may wear a Halloween/Fall themed shirt on Friday, October 25. Treats in the lounge!
  • Fastest 5th Grader Race at UHS Football Game on Friday, October 25

  • Red Ribbon Week ALL WEEK of October 28
  • Fact Fluency Assessments (Gr 1-2) ALL WEEK of October 28
  • 1/2 Day Math Planning with Mr. A (Select Teachers) on Monday, October 28 at 12-4 pm in PLC Room
  • Wear neon/bright colors/sunglasses on Monday, October 28
  • Wear crazy hats & socks on Tuesday, October 29
  • 50th Day of School on Wednesday, October 30 **Wear 50's Outfit**
  • Wear pajama slippers/house shoes on Thursday, October 31
  • Adopt-A-Cop Presentation (5th Grade) on Wednesday, October 30 at 9:00 am in Cafeteria
  • Faculty Meeting (Ms. York with Region 12) on Wednesday, October 30
  • Reading PLC on Thursday, October 31 (All subjects for grades 3-5)
  • GT Nominations due Thursday, October 31
  • Wear tribe shirt or tribe colors on Friday, November 1

Coming Up Soon: Report Card Grades due November 8; First Lesson on Video due November 8; Thanksgiving Lunch on November 22

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Captain's Log

GT Nominations are due on Thursday, October 31 to Mrs. Helton. So far we have 2 nominations! Please send those in soon. Remember anyone can nominate students, even students themselves.

Aids, we MUST have your time clock corrections turned in each week by Monday. This is not optional.

The District Energy Manager has asked that each teacher assign a "Classroom Energy Monitor" as a classroom job. The job description is attached below. We even have badges that we can give to each class for the student to wear.

Mrs. Helton's To-Do List

Not sure where to start? Try using this list for big items to accomplish.

  1. Review PLC Notes Template for any outstanding to-do items before next PLC; plan and collect student work samples (10/24)
  2. Plan Tribe Day activity with buddy (10/25)
  3. Send home permission slips and paperwork for GT nominations; turn in to Mrs. Helton (10/31)
  4. Turn in your Home-School Compacts and Parent Involvement policies to Mrs. Maynard
  5. Check with Ms. Bonnie that you have a sub for 1/2 Day Math Planning (select Gr 3-5 teachers) (11/28)
  6. Do October Fact Fluency Assessments (Gr 1-2); start planning November fact fluency lessons (all grades!) (10/31)
  7. Schedule time to record lesson-email Mrs. Orchard (11/8)
  8. Sign up to sponsor a UIL event!

Tribe Buddy Day

Our next Tribe Buddy Day is Friday, October 25. You will need to pair up with a classroom in your tribe. The theme is "Halloween on Your Continent." We encourage you to plan learning activities that help students learn about how their tribe/continent celebrates Halloween (or a similar holiday). Email Mrs. Helton ASAP if you need specific materials or resources.

Conscious Discipline & CHAMPS

Mrs. Helton and Mrs. Logan would love to join a Morning Meeting! Please send us an invite. :)

Safe Place: The 5 steps of self-regulation need to be posted in every Safe Place. Mrs. Maynard provided each teacher a bright green laminated copy with tape on the back to help make this easy. Also, make sure students have items to choose from to complete step 4 successfully; for example, books, journal & pencil, comfort object (stuffed animal, pillow, etc.)

Kindness Trees: Thank you to everyone who has started their Kindness Tree! If you haven't, don't worry because it's not too late. Let Mrs. Maynard know if you need help.

Need help putting a Tier 1 Behavior Intervention in Branching Minds? There's a guide for that here!


UIL Sponsors Needed

It's UIL time! We are looking for teachers or aids willing to sponsor an activity. Please let Ms. Boggess know if you are interested.

  • Art Smart (Gr 4-5)
  • Chess (Gr 2-5)
  • Music Memory (Gr 2-5)
  • Creative Writing (Gr 2)
  • Ready Writing (Gr 3-5)
  • Dictionary Skills (Gr 5)
  • Listening (Gr 5)
  • Number Sense (Gr 4-5)
  • Spelling (Gr 3-5)
  • Story Telling (Gr 2-3)
  • Oral Reading (Gr 4-5)

The contest will be in late January most likely.


Make sure you check the PLC Notes Template to review "To-Do" items prior to PLCs each week. Bring your laptop, planning calendar and materials, assessment data, and student work samples each week.

Upcoming PLC Schedule:

10/24: Math (Gr 3-5 Both Subjects)

10/31: Reading (Gr 3-5 Both Subjects)-meet in classrooms


GT Nominations

Due October 31 (Grades 1-5)

Resources for nominations:


1. Have parent give permission to test for GT using the "Nomination Form."

2. Send home the link to the digital Parent Questionnaire or provide parent with a paper copy. You will have to input the parent questionnaire answers into the digital Parent Questionnaire.

3. Complete the digital Teacher Questionnaire.

4. Have your student use a computer to complete the digital Student Questionnaire.

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Red Ribbon Week Plans

Here are some suggested Red Ribbon Week plans for the week of October 28. Many of these activities would be great for Morning Meeting!

  • All Week: Door Decorating Contest. Tribe points awarded for school favorites!
  • Monday: Have students work in teams to create a poster for Red Ribbon Week with positive choices. OR Have students work in teams to create a slogans for Red Ribbon Week. Email to Mrs. Maynard for Tribe Points.
  • Tuesday: Circle Time-I choose to be drug free because ____.
  • Wednesday: Have students brainstorm a list of “drugs” and then discuss why it’s important to stay away from them.
  • Thursday: Circle Time-Someone that can help in a difficult situation is _________.
  • Friday: Walk Out on Drugs Walkathon-Have your class join the rest of the school on the track for 2 laps around the track to support “Walk Out On Drugs.” Meet at the track by 8:20.

Red Ribbon Week Daily Dress Up Themes

  • Monday: Bright Enough to Be Drug Free (wear bright colors or sunglasses)
  • Tuesday: Top to Toe - Drug Free We Go! (wear crazy hats and socks)
  • Wednesday: 50 Ways to Be Drug Free (50's dress)
  • Thursday: Comfortable Enough to Be Drug Free (wear pajamas slippers) Students requested!
  • Friday: Tribe With Me and Be Drug Free (wear tribe shirts or tribe colors) Students requested!

Tribe points will be awarded for participation.

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Staff of the Week

Congratulations to Mrs. Gray for being our TEACHER OF THE WEEK. She did a great job presenting on math discourse at the CTCTM Fall Math Meeting in front of other educators.

Congratulations to Ms. Pina for being our STAFF OF THE WEEK. She has been extra helpful with translations and helping in the office when we are short-staffed.

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Student to Student Communication

Coach Williams was doing an awesome job of including student-to-student communication in her PE class with 2nd grade. First she quickly paired students up. She then assigned each partner (based on height) a specific prompt to answer. She challenged them to come up with more ideas if they finished discussing early. As students discussed, she listened in on different conversations. To keep things moving, she reported out some of the examples she had heard students use and then asked for a few more different examples. She used this strategy several times during 1 class with over 30 students in it!

Would You Rather...?

Would You Rather is a fun game with great classroom applications. It is higher order because students must EVALUATE and JUSTIFY their answers. It makes for a great HOOK as a game and it's a great way to engage students in STUDENT-TO-STUDENT communication.

How to play? Easy! Present 2 VIABLE content-based options for students and have them justify their selection to a partner or write it down. There's not usually a right or wrong answer-the thinking is in the justification of the answer.

Here are some different examples:

  • Would you rather have 1/4 or 1/3 of a pie?
  • Would you rather have 4 quarters or 9 dimes in your pocket?
  • Would you rather live through the Civil War or World War II as a student?
  • Would you rather push or pull a cart up a hill?
  • Would you rather be Character X or Character Y in the story that we read?
  • Would you rather read a fiction or nonfiction text about X?
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Math & Science Vertical Planning Days

Region 12 will be planning with vertical teams (math & science) throughout the school year. Planning will be 1/2 day each from 12-4 pm. You will need to create a 1/2 day school business absence in TEAMS for the afternoon if you plan that specific subject (1 per grade level).

  • Math Planning Dates (Grades K-5): October 28, December 10, February 18
  • Science Planning Date (Grades K-5): November 12, January 10, February 19

Please work with Ms. Bonnie to secure subs for these days (grades 3-5 only). Grades K-2 will use the aides assigned to their grade level.

Upcoming Reading Coaching

  • October 29: On-site in-class coaching all day; email Mrs. Logan if you want support
  • October 31: Reading PLC
  • November 6: On-site in-class coaching in morning; planning with select teachers in afternoon (A. Martinez, Greer, Sharp)
  • November 13: 1/2 Day reading planning for Long, Villela, V. Martinez, Foreman, 5 Martinez; 1/2 day writing planning for Foreman/V. Martinez
  • November 19: On-site in-class coaching in morning ; planning with select teacher in afternoon (Long, Villela, V. Martinez, Foreman, 5 Martinez)
  • December 5: Reading PLC
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Box Cards & One Eyed Jacks Training for Math Coming November 14

Box Cars & One Eyed Jacks will be at Alta Vista Elementary on November 14 to train all math teachers in grades 1-5 on the resources that were purchased this summer.

Grades 3-5 Training: 8 am - 11 am

Grades K-2 Training: 12 pm - 3 pm

You will need to create a 1/2 Day School Business Absence in TEAMS (7:45-11:45 or 11:45-3:45). Please work with Ms. Bonnie to secure subs. The subs in the morning will be able to cover the afternoon classes for the lower grades (if you don't have an aid in your room).

GT Update Opportunities

Foundation 30 Hours of GT Training OR Initial Administrator/ Counselor training (Deadline December 13, 2019)

  • Day 1: Nature and Needs of Gifted Learners, Responsive Learning


Registration Code: c11277WISD11371

  • Day 2: Screening, Assessment and Identification, Responsive Learning

use the link and code provided above

  • Day 3: Differentiating in a G/T Classroom, Google Classroom (oqa726)

  • Day 4: Critical and Creative Thinking, Google Classroom (mslr7j)

  • Day 5: Depth and Complexity, Google Classroom (eg3pzl)

Annual Update Options- All annual updates are due no later than May 1, 2020

Book Study (September 1-December 20, 2019) 6-Hours Credit Each

  • Living with Intensity, Susan Daniels (Eduphoria course link)

  • Mindfulness in the Classroom, Season Mussey (Google Classroom 2mp2z0i)

  • Frames (ebook)- J. Taylor Publishing. (Must be purchased and downloaded from Item # JTE-5D) (Google Classroom q359noe)

90 Minute Google Classroom Updates- Complete 4 to fulfill your 6-hour Update

  • Depth and Complexity: Creating Tiered Instruction (Google Classroom wtda9jh)

  • Differentiation in the Classroom: The Basics (Google Classroom ifxecn)

  • Depth and Complexity: Creating a Choice Board (Google Classroom F5gm8ec)

  • Depth and Complexity: Creating a Frame (Google Classroom 67xr2h)

*Additional courses will be added throughout the year.

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PK, K, & 1 District Professional Development & Coaching Requirements

PK Teachers - 30 hours of Early Childhood Professional Development is required for all PK3 and PK4 teachers in the 2019-2020 school year (15 hours of CLI PD courses and 15 hours of coaching)

K-1st Teachers - 30 hours of Early Childhood Professional Development and Coaching is required for all K-1st teachers in the 2019-2020 school year. Hours can be in any combination of PD and Coaching.

**See Mrs. Helton to find out exactly how many hours you have acquired so far for the year.