JMQ Flash

February 8 -12, 2016

Good Things

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Our fabulous counselor, Lynn Bearden!

This counselor can do it all! She soothes and calms both students and staff, she champions the underdog, and she faces the mammoth task of orchestrating STAAR and GT Testing with audacious tenacity! And, that is for 747 kids! At Friday's Awards Assembly, we honored our amazing counselor as part of National Counselors' Week. We are grateful she is ours!

Capturing Kids' Hearts

Capturing Kids' Hearts strategies are great tools to build a community of cooperative and collaborative learners. Make sure your social contract is displayed in a prominent place. Refer to it daily. Every child's signature should be on the contract. Reteach any CKH strategies as necessary. It is important to review often expectations your class agreed to in the fall. Consider making it part of your Monday routine.

Our process champions, with the help of volunteers, have made mini posters of the 4 CKH questions for each classroom and graphic hallway expectation signs for display. Check out, too, the new suggestion box in the office.

I love to hear and see teachers and students using CKH strategies. I smile when I see students checking other students, and teachers using the time-out sign and voicing the four questions to a student who has broken the social contract. The best part about the social contract to me is that a conflict is easily handled and it does not become personal. Keep up the good work!

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The Weekly Scoop!

Be sure to read Pam's detailed staff bulletin! Make sure you are following your displayed schedule. Schedules are not flexible!

  • LISD Board of Trustee Meeting, ESC at 7:00 - JMQ UIL students will present for the following events: Storytelling, Music Memory and Spelling
  • K-2 Daily 5 Training in Conference Room


  • 5th Grade Math Simulation


  • 5th Grade Reading Simulation


  • 4th Grade Writing Simulation
  • Bus evacuation drill (I will send instructions to locate video you need to show students early in the week, prior to this drill.)


  • Valentine Parties: 3-5 @ 1:15, Pre-K - 2 @1:45
On Monday - Wednesday, from 8:00 - 4:30, I will be at the ESC for TTESS training (Teacher Evaluation & Support System) which will be replacing PDAS next year. Lynn will be away all day Tuesday and Wednesday, and Pam will be out Wednesday - Friday. We will be very short-handed. On the days Lynn and I are both gone, Dara will be the go-to person for emergencies. Please handle discipline in your grade level teams as much as possible. If a student is out-of-control, call the office. Use proximity and monitor carefully your "lovelies," especially during transitions and Specials! I have every confidence you will do a great job! I will be available by text, but I will not be able to leave the ESC during the hours of the training, 8:00 - 4:30.

Simulation Tests - Important Reminders

A STAAR Simulation is a reenactment; we want the experience to be as close as possible to the real STAAR administration. Please encourage students to read carefully and do their best. If you have a student who gets stressed, isometric exercises in one's chair can really take the edge off. If you are in a non-testing grade, please remind your students to be quiet in the hallways. We will have small groups testing all over the building. Dara sent you guidelines for check-out procedures and tracking of the time. If there is anything you do not understand, contact her to get clarification prior to test day. STAAR administration is very scripted; make sure you are aware of what you can say and what you cannot say. This data will be the most valid and reliable data you will receive before STAAR.

Professional Development


Opinion Piece from NY Times on Creativity

I find this piece on creativity very interesting. How many rules do you have in your house? We had more than one, but we did raise two pretty creative sons. I have shared the article with Lucy's parents. Lots of applications here!

"One Special Teacher"

I think these 60 second videos are powerful. Please watch them! If any of you would like to make a "One Special Teacher" sixty second video, I would be glad to post it in a future Smore. It can be simply made with a phone. As you watch, please think about two things: your power to impact children in life-changing ways and the power of using video to give students voice in your classroom. I decided I would share my favorite elementary teacher with you, too. (Press the arrow to quickly get past the scary photo!) Enjoy!

60 Seconds with Gloria Ladson-Billings
60 Seconds with Don Leu
60 Seconds with Ed Madison
60 Seconds with Angela Maiers
60 Seconds with Chernor Bah
60 Seconds with Yong Zhao
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Novice iPad Movie User

I tried using my new iPad Movie app, but I did not have time to figure out how to edit. I need a fifth grader to help me, and I bet our JMQ Live camera operator can be that peron. It does not matter if you are a perfect teacher; it matters that you are a willing learner to try new ways of learning along with your students.

I once had a PE teacher in high school who would not (and I presumed could not) model anything she asked us to do. If only she had tried the maneuvers she "told" us to do on the uneven parallel bars, I might have tried harder. Set that example as the lead learner in your classroom, tackle new learning outside of your comfort zone, and your students will see you in a new light! A student-centered classroom is a team of learners of all ages!

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"Teaching Tolerance"

I think this magazine goes to all the school principals. I found it has an online presence, so I thought I would share the link if you are interested.

Join Kellye King's ELA Google Community

Kellye has already sent out this link,, but in case you missed it, I wanted to share it again. Don't miss out on the valuable resources shared here, ELA teachers!

Capturing Kids' Hearts Survey

Here is the link again in case you have not completed the survey. This is for people who went through the training in August, both teachers and paras! Last day is 2-10-16! Thank you!