The Knightly News 2-17-2015


Know our Kids, Meet their Needs, Up the Mountain to T-2-4!

I have seen great work going on in the classrooms!  I really appreciate how this week I saw several teachers using ELL strategies with their students.  As we move toward the season of testing – don’t give up on these strategies.  This is when they are really critical!  Be sure your kids are speaking in complete sentences and when they don’t – remind them and have the students say it again!  Pre-teach that vocabulary!  Give students word banks to use when they write!  The more interaction students have with new words – the better they will understand them!   Remember – we have to move the needle for our ELL students’ achievement!
We talked a little with the 7th grade teachers on Friday afternoon how February is a really tough month for teachers and kids! The stress of the STAAR test begins and kids often react to our stress with not optimum behavior!  So – keeping the class focused, engaged, and on task becomes even more important!  Here are Practice STAAR dates coming up:
Feb. 26 – 8th grade Reading Practice STAAR
March 5 – 6th & 7th grade Math Practice STAAR. 7th PreAP Practice STAAR, 8th grade Science Practice STAAR
March 6 – 8th grade Math Practice STAAR
These tests give us great data to inform our instruction!  Keep up the hard work!  We are going to do this!


Wow!  I want to thank Jamecia for her hard work and great start to the “Building a Culture of Achievement/Excellence at NMS”  Campaign!  I know many of you have also indicated interest in working with Jamecia as we take NMS to the next level!  I am really excited to see what we can grow here and with the teachers making it happen – I know it will be outstanding!!  Again – Jameicia – You Rock!  Great Work!

Passports – You all are doing really well with the passports!  I am super excited to see what you all have accomplished with the students.  As I have already said – February is a tough month – discipline goes up in February – so the fact there are many kids on RISE is totally normal.  I am sure you heard the same things from the YES teachers on Friday during our PD.  There is no magic bullet!  This is tough work – and it requires all teachers to be consistent, fair, and follow through!  I think what I have heard the most is that some teachers aren’t giving marks for students on RISE talking.  Everyone must follow through!  We all have to be united!  When kids see we all mean it – and marks are given consistently – most kids will get in line!  Remember – we are going to always struggle with 2-3% of the kids!  There interventions may look very different!  My soap box is this:  The passports are not classroom management.  CHAMPS is your classroom management, as well as the other strategies we have learned about in Teach Like A Champion.  When you use those plus CHAMPS – your kids know what is expected, they get feedback from you, and you create success.  There are so many teachers at NMS with FANTASTIC classroom management – that the Passport is only needed infrequently, and only after at least one redirect!  If you find yourself giving mark after mark, then classroom management needs to be addressed!  If you need any help or support – please let me know!  What I am so excited about is the positivity that I hear from so many teachers!  NMS teachers are the best!!

Here is the schedule for the week:
Monday, Feb. 16, 2015

Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015
A Day
YES Prep Common Assessments – quiet upstairs!!!  YES students not in electives
Free Dress – tickets already purchased
8:45 Base Camp

Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2015
B Day
YES Prep Common Assessments – quiet upstairs!!!  YES students not in electives
8:00 Val @ meeting
8:00 Department Meetings – except ELA:  SS and Science use protocol to look at student writing, Math with vendor
9:00 Computers and Testing meeting in conference room

Thursday, Feb. 19, 2015
A Day
YES Prep Common Assessments – quiet upstairs!!!  YES students not in electives
8:00-11:30 or 1:00-4:30 AP Meetings
8:00 ELA Department Meeting
9:00 Master schedule Meeting
1:30 Vic’s group in MPR
4:00 Knights Grade Level meeting

Friday, Feb. 20, 2015
B Day

9:15 Kid Team meeting

Have a great week!  Have those kids Work Hard!!!!!


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