The Pony Express

Parent Newsletter: Week of January 11th - 15th

Happy New Year!

Greetings Pony Parents,

We are excited to have completed our first week of school for the second semester! We appreciate your support and partnership during the first half of this school year as we maneuvered through our new way of learning. We can't wait to RISE UP with you this semester as we continue to focus on teaching and learning while keeping our students and staff safe! #neverunderestimatetheheartofachampion

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Turning New Year’s Resolutions Into Real Solutions

The time of year has come where we all make promises to improve ourselves. Why not begin the year with actions that will help impact your family relationships? Positive Parenting Solutions gives us ways to make a difference in your kids’ behavior and family dynamic with some simple strategies:

  • Spend 10 minutes per day of one-on-one uninterrupted time with each child.

  • Improve your routines. Use the “When/Then” Method to get your children involved in daily tasks. For example: “When you brush your teeth, then pick your favorite book for story time.”

  • Get everyone helping around the house. Have a family meeting and divide the household workload. Assign meaningful responsibilities that are age appropriate. Remind your family that you are a “team” and everyone must participate in order for this to work effectively.

Take these ideas and make them your family resolutions. Build emotional connections, reduce negative behaviors, and have a positive impact on your family. That’s a great way to start the new year!

Pony Reminders

  • School Hours are 8:35am - 3:40pm
  • Doors open at 8:10am (please don't drop students off prior to this time)
  • Car riders may not exit the vehicle until all temperatures are checked
  • Attendance Matters!
  • Ensure technology is brought to school daily
  • No transportation changes after 3:00pm
  • Dismissal begins at 3:30pm
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MAP Testing

We will begin our MOY MAP Testing on January 11th for grades K-5. Please be flexible with teachers as they work hard to get all students tested, virtual and face-to-face. We look forward to sharing your child's progress so far this school year with you soon!

Free Internet Hotspots Now Available for Eligible Students

Spring ISD is excited to share that the district is providing free internet hotspots for eligible students. Families who take advantage of this free service will get unlimited data, so you won’t need to use your own. You can also connect up to eight devices on one hotspot. Most importantly, students will be able to complete their school work and homework and connect with their teachers with more reliable internet.

Spring ISD is also partnering with Comcast Internet Essentials to provide free internet services for eligible families. For more information and to sign up, please call 281-891-6850.

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How Spring ISD is Preparing for the COVID-19 Vaccines

Parents, as we head into the spring semester, we are all looking forward to the availability of vaccines against COVID-19. Our school district is following the guidance of Harris County Department of Health, which has recently opened up the distribution of vaccines to educators over 65 or those with a pre-existing health condition.

Of course, we’re encouraging any eligible staff members to receive the vaccine when it’s available to them. We’ve been heartened that some of our employees have already been able to get the first dose. In the weeks to come, we expect more staff members will be receiving appointments for the vaccine and may need to take time off during the school day to do this. We want to minimize any impacts on our students but we wanted to let you know that in some cases, we may need to move classes (whether remote or in-person) to asynchronous learning if there are staffing/coverage issues.

We promise to keep you updated and give you the most notice possible should we need to move your student to asynchronous learning for a day, half a day, or a few hours. Thank you for your ongoing support as we all continue to work together to stop the spread!

Get Involved During National Mentoring Month this January

This month is designated as National Mentoring Month and is a good reminder that adult mentors can make a key difference in the lives of young people by providing them with an important source of social and emotional support. During the current pandemic, it’s especially essential that the young people in our communities have dependable people to look up to and follow in their footsteps.

Ways to help mentor during the ongoing pandemic

  • Be mindful. As COVID-19 spreads it can trigger trauma for kids any age. Let students know that you are there for them.

  • Be intentional. Preserve continuity in the relationship.

    • Acknowledge what is going on and talk about it.

    • Understand their emotions.

  • Be in it together. Let your mentee know that you are in this together and here to help.

  • Be communicative. Healthy and supportive relationships are crucial during this time.

Want more tips? Check out the National Mentoring Resource Center.

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Family Talks Improve Social-Emotional Health

It can be difficult to connect with children and teens, but you should know that by conversing with them, it has a great impact on their social-emotional health. Having family talks whether at home, over the phone or virtually creates positive emotions such as happiness and empathy. Healthier Generation gives us great communication points to get you connecting:

  • Start with shared experiences or interests.

  • Make sure the environment is quiet and free of distractions, such as phones and electronics.

  • Approach family conversations with an open mind.

  • Be willing to pause what you are doing to listen when your child initiates a conversation.

  • If kids are not talkative, do not give up. Share a story about yourself that relates to their interests.

As you take a walk, drive home or even share a meal with your kids, open lines of communication to begin sharing stories and building conversations.

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January is National Blood Donor Month

The winter months have historically been a tough time for blood banks, with increases in seasonal illness raising demand while inclement weather and families’ busy schedules around the holidays often result in decreased blood donations. This past year, due to COVID-19, thousands of blood drives have had to be canceled, but the need – as always – remains.

The good news is that, no matter the time of year, giving blood is always in season! Donated blood can only be kept for a limited amount of time, making it important to continually replenish the supply. Someone in the U.S. requires a blood transfusion every two seconds, and National Blood Donor Month is an important reminder of this vital service that we can take part in to help others in their time of need.

Students and staff 17 or older may be eligible to donate, and students who are 16 years old may also be eligible with parental consent. For more information, check out Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center, one of the largest community blood centers in the country. Their location finder can even help you find a donation opportunity near you!

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Andra Day - Rise Up (Lyrics)