The Trojan Times

St. Maria Goretti Catholic School November 15, 2020

Mission Statement

St. Maria Goretti is a living testament to our Lord's work in His youngest disciples, exemplified by academic excellence, spiritual formation, and compassionate service to others.

St. Maria Goretti Catholic School aims to form what is True, Good, and Beautiful in the souls of our young disciples of Christ.

Principal's Message

Dear St. Maria Goretti Catholic School Families,

I hope you all are enjoying the weekend and are ready for another great week ahead!

As always, there was a lot happening at SMGCS last week. Please be sure to see all the recaps and photos below from last week's events, including the Faith Families Assembly, the Box of Joy service project, our special Veterans Day video, 7th/8th Grade Saint videos, Turkey Bingo, and more!

Quarter 2 Progress Reports were emailed to families last Friday. Please contact your student's teacher(s) directly with any questions or concerns. Also last Friday, the ACT Aspire Interim Assessment results (3rd - 8th Grade students only) were sent home in Friday Folders, along with an explanation/letter from me on how to interpret the results. An email was also sent to parents of 3rd - 8th Grade students alerting them to check Friday Folders. Please let me know if you have any questions about your student's results. Again, these are benchmark assessments that we are using to monitor progress throughout the year, before students take the summative assessment in late spring.

The Stephen Breen Foundation's Angel Wings VIrtual Gala is Tuesday evening, November 17th. The Stephen Breen Memorial Foundation is committed to offering financial aid to local children who seek the strength and values of a Catholic education and to those courageous children and their families whose lives are afflicted with cancer. The Foundation provides well over $100,000 each year to Catholic schools in the Diocese of Fort Worth, making Catholic education assessible to many students whose families may otherwise not be able to afford all or part of the tuition. At least three SMGCS families each year benefit through the generosity of the Breen Foundation. The event includes a free dinner that can be picked up from either Los Vacqueros locations in Fort Worth, with Bishop Olson opening the event in prayer, and local news anchor, Karen Borta, emceeing. Please consider "attending" this virtual event for a great cause! See the ad and link to register below.

The week before last, all school families were notified via email of our plan to move to virtual Distance Learning for two weeks (9 school days) following Christmas break. We are working on student schedules for virtual learning and will communicate those to parents (and students) once complete. If you have not done so already, please complete the form that is included in the letter, acknowledging your understanding of the plan and letting us know if you plan to travel during either break. Please consider the travel that you may have planned over the Thanksgiving break. If you are at all concerned about possible exposure to COVID-19 over the Thanksgiving break, please consider keeping your student(s) home and distance learning the week following Thanksgiving. Families who may need to borrow devices (i.e. laptops, ipads) for their students to utilize during that time are asked to contact Mrs. Daly ( to make arrangements. The letter that was emailed and the link to the acknowledgement form can be found by clicking on the following link.

Upcoming Events this Week: Please see below in this newsletter for details.

  • Thanksgiving Food Drive hosted by Student Council and NJHS: Donations are due TOMORROW! See the list of needed items below.
  • The Spirit Wear Store is open through Monday night! Order your favorite SMGCS gear in time for Christmas!
  • The Stephen Breen Memorial Foundation Giving Wings Virtual Gala, Tuesday, November 17th! Please support this event! See below for details.
  • Thanksgiving break: November 23 - 27, 2020; No School

Finally, we want to hear from you! We will periodically be including brief surveys in the Trojan Times, with our first survey in today's edition below. The surveys will be very short, usually 2-3 questions, and will help us to learn more while informing our planning and processes. Survey #1 can be found below.

Have a great week ahead and may God continue to bless you and your families.

St. Maria Goretti, Pray for Us!


Laura Behee, M.Ed.


Thanksgiving Food Drive: Donations DUE Monday, Nov. 16th

For many years now, the SMGCS Thanksgiving Food Drive has touched the hearts of many needy families. Our Student Council and National Junior Honor Society would once again like to sponsor the food drive. Our drive will run from Monday, November 9 through Monday, November 16th.

The overall school goal is for each student to bring the item assigned to their class as an offering of Thanksgiving for all that God has blessed them with over the past year. Please see the flyer below for details as to the specific items each grade-level is asked to donate. Gift cards to grocery stores or small cash donations ($1-$10) are also welcome, which would allow food basket recipients to purchase a turkey or additional food items.

Questions? Please contact Mrs. Utendorf at

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SMG Spirit Store Closes MONDAY! - Great Christmas Gifts

Choose from SMG long and short sleeved T-Shirts, hoodies, vest, masks and more! Place your orders by November 16th and receive in time for Christmas. Click on the link for the SMGCS Spirit Store:

Our very own talented Mrs. Bara is offering our families the opportunity to order from her designs for $25. The short sleeved shirts are available in Youth and Adult sizes. To order, please print the order form below and return to school with payment.

Order Scrip in time for Thanksgiving & Black Friday!

Monday, November 16th is the last day to order Scrip gift cards to get them in time for your Thanksgiving meal and Black Friday shopping. Scrip order forms were sent home in Friday Folders last week, and can be also be found on the school website. Make sure to turn them in by Monday at 9am. Orders will be delivered Friday, November 20th.

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How Are We Doing? Survey

Your opinion matters! Please take a minute to complete the brief survey by clicking on the link below. Thank you for your input!


Volunteer Hour Policy-

We will be continuing with our SPIRIT Hour policy from last year. In the absence of Kountry Karnival, we will be working to find other ways that families can earn hours. Opportunities will be communicated via emailed SPIRIT Updates, the Trojan Times, and on our website.

All SMG families must complete 40 hours (20 hours by December 18, 2020, and 20 hours by May 14, 2021). Please note that due to having fewer events and volunteer opportunities at which to earn SPIRIT hours right now, we will defer charges for incomplete SPIRIT hours for 1st Semester until the end of the 2nd semester, and will reevaluate at that time.

Current Volunteer/Donation Opportunities:

  • Water Donations- The school will have an ongoing need for water bottles this year. Having plenty on hand allows us to provide water to students when they run out or forget their own. Please consider donating a case or two whenever you can throughout the year. One SPIRIT Hour will be provided per 48 water bottles donated. Donations can be brought to the school front office, Monday - Friday between 7:30AM - 3:30PM.
  • Disposable Face Masks & Gloves-Donate boxes of disposable face masks and gloves of all sizes and earn one SPIRIT hour for each box donated. Donations can be brought to the school front office, Monday - Friday between 7:30AM - 3:30PM.
  • Items for Christmas Store 2021-Purchase new items for next year's (2021) Christmas store and receive one SPIRIT Hour for every $10 spent. Needed items include small toys, small household items, trinkets, gift bags, and tissue paper. Receipts must be included when donation is dropped off in order to receive SPIRIT hour credit. Donations can be brought to the school front office, Monday - Friday between 7:30AM - 3:30PM.

The Stephen Breen Foundation's Giving Wings Virtual Gala!

Please join us on Tuesday, Nov 17th, at 7:00 PM for the Stephen Breen Memorial Foundation’s Giving Wings virtual dinner. The Stephen Breen Memorial Foundation is committed to offering financial aid to local children who seek the values of a Catholic education, and those courageous children and their families whose lives are afflicted with cancer. The Breen Foundation has helped many families in our school community over the years with financial assistance, making a Catholic education possible. Please consider attending this event to help them continue this very important work!

For more information and to register, please visit:

I Give Catholic - December 1st

Support the promise of Catholic education. Visit our link to contribute:
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SMG Open House Tour - December 3rd

We would like to invite you to visit us on Thursday, December 3rd. Schedule a tour to explore our campus from 8:30 am - 2:30 pm. Visit our link to sign up:

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SMG School Club Opportunities

SMG Clubs - Mark Your Calendars!


· 3:30-4:15PM 3rd-5th PSIA Ready Writing (Cruz) Begins Nov. 2

  • Nov. 2, 16, 30, Dec. 14, Jan 11, 25, Feb. 8, 22, March 8, 22, alternating Mondays

· 3:30-4:30PM 5th-8th Drama Club (Richards)

· 3:30-4:15PM 4th-8th PSIA Maps, Graphs and Charts (Daly) Begins 10/26

  • Oct. 26, Nov. 2, 9, 16, 30, Dec. 7, Jan 11, 25, Feb 1, 8

· 3:30-4:15PM 6th-8th PSIA On-Site Drawing (Jamison) Begins Nov. 9 (Please note change from Wednesday to Monday)


-Rubik’s Cube Club (Utendorf)

  • 12:09-12:39PM in Library: 6th-8th
  • 12:29-12:49PM in Library: 4th–5th
  • Google Meets Available for Distance Learners
-Ballet Folklorico (Zavala)
  • 6:00-7:00PM SMG Cafetorium, Begins 10/20


· 3:30-4:30PM 5th-8th Garden Club (Pick) Begins Oct. 21

· 3:30-4:15PM 6th-8th PSIA Ready Writing (Juergens) Begins Oct. 28

  • Nov. 11 and Nov. 18 CANCELLED

· 3:30-4:15PM 4th-5th PSIA Math (Schump) Begins 10-28

· 3:30-4:15PM Running Club (weather permitting) (Gutierrez/Salomao)

  • Nov. 4, 18, Dec. 2, 16, Feb. 3, 17, Mar. 10, 24, April 14, 28, May 12

· 3:30-5:00PM Cheer Club (Paladini)


· 3:30-4:15PM 3rd-8th Cecilian Singers Club (Richards)

· 3:30-4:15PM 2nd-8th PSIA Spelling (Vasquez)

  • bi weekly: Oct 22, Nov. 5, 19, Dec. 3, 17

· 3:30-4:15PM 2nd PSIA Math (Gutierrez)

  • Oct. 29, Nov. 12, Dec. 3, Jan. 14, 28, Feb. 11 alternating Thursdays Begins Oct. 29

· 3:30-4:15PM 3rd PSIA Math (Gutierrez)

  • Nov. 5, 19, Dec. 10, Jan 21, Feb. 4, 11 alternating Thursdays Begins Nov. 5

· 3:30-4:15PM 4th-8th Chess Club (Nguyen) Begins Nov. 5

· 3:30-4:15PM 6th-8th PSIA Math (Utendorf) Begins Oct. 29

  • Oct. 29, Nov. 12, 19, Dec. 3, 10, Jan. 14, 28, Feb. 11

Ballet Folklorico Meets Tuesday Evenings

Mrs. Zavala sponsors the Ballet Folklorico Club which meets each Tuesday from 6:00 to 7:00 PM in the SMG cafetorium. It is open to students in second through eighth grade. Folklórico refers to many traditional dances from Mexico's different regions and states, rather than one single style. Folklórico is most famous for its promotion of regional dance and incorporation of traditional Mexican dress and Mexican folk music into its routines. The women wear a ranchero designed dress with unmistakable Indian influenced bright colored ribbons. Contact Mrs. Zavala ( to join Ballet Folklorico and learn the many regional folk dances of Mexico.

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4th-8th Chess Club Began November 5th

Sign up now for the SMG Chess Club. Class size is limited to a total of 12 students in-person, with a maximum of 2 students each for grades 4th-6th and 3 students each for grades 7th-8th. There are unlimited spots for the online meet using Google Meets and Sign up ends on November 5th. Sign up at

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4-H Club Now at SMGCS!

We are excited to be announce that SMGCS has joined the Diocese of Fort Worth-Tarrant County 4-H Club! Membership is open to all 3rd - 8th Grade students. For more information or questions, contact Mrs. Pick at As well, see the information below and at the following link with details on how to register! Parents are welcome (and encouraged) to volunteer!

More info here:

Joining information:

go to

(if that link doesn’t work, go to, scroll down, and click on 4-H online)

Create new account as a new member

Choose "Diocese of Fort Worth-Tarrant County" for your club

Pay the $30 registration fee

Parents, if you are interested in helping as project leaders, you can register the same way. You should have one account per family, and then click “add family member” to the first account. Parent volunteers must be current on their VIRTUS training, and the membership fee is $10.

You can learn more about the Texas 4-H projects here:

Garden Club - 3rd - 8th Grade

The SMGCS Gardening Club meets on Wednesdays after school. All 3rd - 8th Grade students are welcome to participate, but space is limited. Please complete and return the permission slip (link below) to register, and contact Mrs. Pick ( for with questions or for more information.

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First Day of Running Club - Still Time to Join Us!

The SMGCS Run Club meets approximately twice a month on Wednesdays after school. Please visit the links below for more information and to register!



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Miscellaneous Information

NEW: Lunch Orders Must be Placed Sunday for the Entire Week

Lunch orders must be placed for the entire week (Monday through Friday) by Sunday at 3:00pm. We cannot accept orders placed after the Sunday deadline.

We will continue to text families on Friday morning each week, which will allow parents/students to place lunch orders for the upcoming week. The link is also available on the school website and will continue in the weekly Trojan Times. The form has a link with the menu attached as well.

Click below for the order form:

Healthy Together App

By now, most have downloaded the free Healthy Together app (found in the App Store). Please continue to complete the app before arriving in carline and be ready to show the completed screening to a faculty/staff member on duty in carline each morning. Multiple students can conveniently be added to one app. Please call the front office if you have any questions about how to install the app.

Student Email Accounts and Google Classroom

All students, whether learning On-Campus or via Distance Learning, have school email accounts that they generally access during computer class, and will also need to access Google Classroom. Parents of students in Grades 4th - 8th who are attending classes On-Campus were sent information and instructions for their student(s) to access their email accounts, log-in to Google Classroom, and create a bookmark on their home devices. Students have also be given this information during computer class, as many 4th-8th Grade teachers provide feedback on assignments, etc. to students via Google Classroom. As well, being familiar with logging in to Google Classroom will be helpful should we ever need to move to distance learning during the school year. If you did not receive your student's log-in information or have questions, please contact Mrs. Daly (

As well, please check out the following tutorial for detailed instructions on signing into Google Classroom.

2020-2021 Academic Calendar

Please click on the following link to view the 2020-2021 Academic Calendar. It can also be found on the school website at

COVID-19: Safety Procedures and Protocols

Please see the SMG Safe Return to School plan that was sent to all school families last week, by clicking the following link.

Box Tops - Earn Money for SMG!

Box Tops makes it easy for families to earn cash for schools and help teachers get the supplies they need. Traditional Box Tops clips are being phased out of production, but may continue to be found on many products throughout the store. Although you may still clip coupons, there is a NEW and EASY method:

  • Create a Box Tops for Education account via the Box Tops app or website - View the video: How it Works, Join For Free
  • Buy Box Top Products
  • Use your app to scan the store receipt within 14 days of purchase -View the video: How to Scan

2020-2021 Enrollment & Registration

Registration & Enrollment for the 2020-2021 school year can be found on our school website. There are still spots available at most grade-levels. As a reminder, tuition assistance is available and we are committed to making a Catholic education a reality for any family who wishes one for their child(ren). Please contact Mrs. Behee (lbehee@smgschool) or our Registrar, Mrs. de la Pena ( with any questions or concerns.

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Nolan Catholic High School: 6th-8th Grade Family Information

Nolan Catholic is excited to announce that the application process for the 2021-2022 school year has already begun. Our goal is to continue to allow for as many admissions opportunities as possible for our prospective families to learn more about Nolan Catholic High School.

As a quick highlight, the admissions department is offering informational sessions, one-on-one meetings, virtual or on-campus tours, and an open house this fall.

For more information, visit

Last Week at SMG.....

Box of Joy Service Project

During Monday's Faith Families (virtual) Assembly, students focused on the virtue of Courtesy. They worked on the Box of Joy service project by creating boxes of items that will be sent overseas to children who are less fortunate. Additionally, they included hand written notes and letters.

Thanks to the incredible generosity of our school families, we filled 79 boxes of joy! The Box of Joy service project was another valuable lesson and opportunity for students to practice courtesy and so many other virtues as well.

We concluded our whole-group discussion with a presentation by Mrs. Richard’s Kindergarten music students as they shared what showing courtesy means to them and sang the song, Please, Thank You, Sorry. You can view their sweet performance here.

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Mrs. Salomao's Class Celebrates Filling 6 Boxes of Joy

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Veterans Day Video

SMGCS families shared photos of their family members who served or are currently serving our country in the military. A special thanks to Mrs. Richards and Mrs. Utendorf for working with our students and using their technical expertise to create this special SMG video honoring our veterans on Veterans Day.

Turkey Bingo: Friday, November 13th

Students, faculty, & staff participated in SMG's first All-School Turkey Bingo on Friday. Proceeds will go toward updating the metal sign in the cafetorium with our new school logo. First Grade teacher, Mrs. Watson, showed her enthusiasm with a turkey hat (see photo below)! Winners of the games were awarded frozen turkeys just in time for a Thanksgiving celebration! Congratulations to Mary Payne, Rosie Breclaw, Landon Moore, Abby McDonald, Holly Baker, Sammy Wilson, Atticus Sferra, Harper Osborne, and Damian Smeragliuolo

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Litany of the Saints

As we continue to observe in November the Church's celebration of all who have gone before us into eternal life, we had the opportunity to go to the church to venerate the saint relics. Students were provided with a guided reflection that could be read aloud (for newer readers) or silently while students venerated the relics. Also provided was a litany particular to the relics of the saints we have at SMG.

All Saints Day: Saints Museum

Our 7th and 8th grade students spent much of October learning about their chosen saint. Through researching the saint's life, creating a tri-fold tribute and a gilded icon, writing a hymn or litany in honor of that saint, and performing a costumed narrative as the saint, students have grown closer to their saint and the Church Triumphant. Following are this week's recordings created by our SMG students.

St. Teresa of Avila (Destiny Munoz)

St. Monica (Angelena de la Rosa)

St. Isidore (Bill Dinh)

Pope St. Pius X (Do Nguyen)

St. Joan of Arc (Sofia Serna)

St. Cajetan (Christian Clark)

St. George (Liam Lusk)

St. Lucy (Teresa Nguyen)

St. Pope John Paul II (Nathaniel Cunningham)

St. Philomena (Anaiah Barrera)

St. Maximillian Kolbe (Haskell Ramirez)

St. Maria Goretti (Caitlin Do)

St. John the Apostle (Bao Tran)

Blessed Virgin Mary (Ly Nguyen)

Pre K Turkey Creations

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Kindergarten Gives Thanks

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One of the pleasures of teaching kindergarten students is their impromptu moments of grace. Listen to this cute video as Mrs. Bara's class bursts into song as they are working.

Kindergarten: Good Behavior Pays Off

Mrs. Bara's Kindergarten class filled their marble jar again and earned a donut party!
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First Grade Religion

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Second Grade Science

Mrs. Gutierrez and class discussed what happens when liquids are mixed with water.
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Fourth Grade History

Students made a collage with facts about the five major groups who settled in the United States.
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Eighth Grade Science: The Periodic Table

Science students are studying the periodic table by illustrating the element and describing what happens to the element at room temperature.

An element is a substance that cannot be broken down into any other substance. Every element is made up of its own type of atom. Everything in the universe contains the atoms of at least one or more elements. The periodic table lists all the known elements and groups together those with similar properties.

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Music: Sing Our Praise to Him!

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Spanish: Day of the Dead Ofrenda (Offering)

Who would you build an altar or ofrenda (Spanish: "offering") for in your home if you were celebrating the Day of the Dead and what would you include on your altar?

Spanish: El Dormitoriio por Vincent Van Gogh

After studying a painting by Vincent van Gogh of his bedroom in Arles, students then imagined that they were able to purchase Van Gogh's bedroom items. Using their Spanish skills, they composed sentences describing what they would buy.

Pennell's Weekly Words of Wisdom

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Calendar Notes

  • Monday, 11/16: 3:30-4:30PM, Drama Club; 3:30-4:15PM, PSIA Maps, Graphs and Charts, PSIA On-Site Drawing, 3rd-5th PSIA Ready Writing
  • Tuesday, 11/17: Rubik's Club during lunch; 6:00-7:00PM Ballet Folklorico
  • Wednesday, 11/18: 3:30-4:15PM 6th-8th PSIA Ready Writing CANCELLED, 4th-5th PSIA Math, Running Club (weather permitting), 3:30-4:30PM Garden Club
  • Thursday, 11/19: Butter Braid Pick-Up at Saint Maria Center, 3:30-4:15PM, Cecilian Singers Club, 3rd PSIA Math, 6th-8th PSIA Math, 2nd-8th PSIA Spelling, Chess Club
  • Monday, 11/23-Friday, 11/27: Thanksgiving Holiday - No School
  • Tuesday, 12/1: I Give Catholic
  • Thursday, 12/3: 8:30AM-2:30PM SMG Open House Tour
  • Wednesday/Thursday, 12/9-10: SMG Christmas Store
  • Friday, 12/18: 2nd Quarter Ends; 12:10PM Dismissal, No Lunch Service, No SMEED
  • Dec. 21-Jan. 4: Christmas Break - No School
  • Tuesday, 1/5: Classes resume Online-All Students Distance Learning through Friday, January 15, 2021.
  • Monday, 1/18: MLK, Jr. Day Holiday-No School
  • Tuesday, 1/19: Students, Faculty, and Staff return to campus; On-campus learning resumes.

Need Prayers?

We all do!! The St. Maria Goretti Catholic School Community would love to pray for you and your intentions. Please send all prayer requests to:

Meet Our Priests!

St. Maria Goretti Parish Website:

Catholic Diocese of Fort Worth

Serving the North Texas Catholic community by providing the faithful opportunities to grow in Christian discipleship and strengthen their relationship with Jesus Christ.

Like Us on Face Book!

We are hoping to update our official Facebook page with some more recent, positive reviews, likes, and shares. Please visit our official Facebook page (Facebook@StMariaGorettiArlington) and help us spread the word about our great Catholic school!