Monday, September 18, 2017

Updates from the Principal

Dear families and community members, 

It's hard to believe that 4 weeks of school have already passed. Our students are finally getting into the daily routines. We would like to thank all the families for a successful first round of PTA fundraiser. Proceeds will be used to help fund teacher training and various student learning activities throughout the school year. 

Celebrations

Adventure Dash Fun Run
Last Friday, all of our students participated in the obstacle course fun run to end our big PTA fundraiser, Adventure Dash Fun Run. On Dash Day our students participated in a fun yet challenging obstacle course to show our students that with teamwork no obstacle is too hard to overcome.  Last week students received lessons on fitness, healthy living habits, teamwork and the importance of setting and accomplishing goals. Way to go Spicewood!

IB PYP 101


This portion of Mrs. Kim's letter is contributed by Mrs. Vance, our PYP Coordinator.


Through an interactive presentation, our IB Coordinator will explain more about the PYP program and what makes it so unique. You'll walk away with a more in depth understanding of the program, how Spicewood educates the "whole child", as well as ways that you can best support your child at home to further enhance their learning. We invite you to attend with an open mind and your questions about the IB program!

This Week's News

Announcement from Mrs. Kim
Parents, I'd like to share with you that our family is projected to add a new member in March 2018. I am heading into 15th week of pregnancy with our daughter this week. I will find a long term principal substitute to help the leadership team soon and share the plans with you as the time gets near. 

Breakfast with Dads Hosted by WatchDOGS
We call for all fathers and father-figures to come join us with their child for a nice tradition of breakfast together on Wednesday, September 20 from 7am-7:40am!
The WatchDOGS breakfast is a fun tradition at Spicewood. Men host a breakfast for kids and their dads in the school cafeteria. We serve donuts, fruits, coffee, and juice. When the kids head off for the first lesson, there is a brief overview of the WatchDOGS program.

Click Here to Volunteer!

Westwood Learning Community Parent Forum
Meet Westwood Area Superintendent Rebecca Donald at our Learning Community Parent Forum on Wednesday, September 20 from 6:30-8PM. Come out and tell us what’s important to you at the Forum. Mrs. Kim will also be in attendance. It's highly encouraged for all feeder pattern parents to attend. 

IB PYP Parent Information Night + PTA General Membership Meeting #1
Please come meet our IB Coordinator, Jessica Vance, and learn more the IB program about how you can best support your child in the PYP program here at Spicewood. The meeting will be located in the cafeteria on Thursday, September 21 from 6-7PM.

Spicewood PTA T-Shirt Pre-Orders
Thanks to everyone who has purchased a Spicewood t-shirt this year!  We’ve sold a record number of shirts and we are currently out of multiple sizes.  We are going to order more shirts and we are currently taking pre-orders through October 6th, 2017.  This is your last chance to get a shirt for the year!  Click here to pre-order a shirt.  Shirts will arrive in October and be delivered to the school.  If you have questions, please reach out to Stephanie Brackhahn.  

Destination Imagination
The Destination Imagination (DI) Club Information Session is at 6pm on September 20th at the school library. A Round Rock ISD DI program manager and team from last year will present the program and answer questions from parents. DI is an international educational program for students from Kindergarten through university where student teams solve open-ended STEAM-based challenges and present solutions at tournaments. The program has a footprint in 48 states, over 30 countries and more than 150,000 students worldwide. The mission of this club is to encourage and foster 21st century skills like creativity and critical thinking and their application to real life. Click here for more information about this program.

REFLECTIONS Creativity Contest
This PTA-sponsored program allows your child to come up with her or his own way to express this year’s theme: Within Reach. Children can enter as many pieces as they’d like across six categories (literature, visual arts, photography, film production, dance choreography, and musical composition). Your child does not have to be an accomplished artist or expert writer to enter. It’s all about a child’s interpretation and expression of the theme. The deadline for submitting entries is Friday, October 27, 2017. For more information, including rules and entry forms, check out the Spicewood PTA Reflections website

Math Superstars
If your kids love problem solving or want additional math practice, this completely optional program (K-4) is for you! Superstar sheets are turned in weekly, graded by a classroom parent volunteer and students are awarded stars for their participation. The spirit of this program is to be fun while providing additional math exposure! Check out the Math Superstars program on the PTA website for more details. Sign up registration deadline is September 27th, 2017.


Math Pentathlon Club
We need a coach for Division 3 (4th & 5th grade) for the 2017-2018 academic year.  If you are interested in this position or any volunteer position, please sign up here! For more information about the Math Pentathlon club, click here.

K.I.S.S. (Kids Invite Someone Special) Cookout 2017-2018
The Annual KISS Cookout will be held Friday, September 29th, 2017 during your child’s lunchtime. You may invite grandparents, friends, neighbors, anyone that is someone special in your child's life. You are welcome to bring your own food to the Cookout, in which case you don’t need to return the form that was sent home in Friday Folders. If you can volunteer to help with this event, please click here. I'm sad to say I'll be missing this event for the first time in my 5 years at Spicewood due to a family wedding that will happen that weekend in NYC. 

Saddle Up for the Book Fair!
The Scholastic Wild West Book Fair is a major fundraising event for the Spicewood Library. Proceeds from the book fair pay for author visits, storytellers, online resources (TumbleBooks, PebbleGo, e-books), and of course, BOOKS. The Book Fair will be open daily starting Monday, September 25, through Friday, September 29, from 7:30am - 4:00pm. More information on our Book Fair webpage.

Book Fair Family Night: Round up your posse and come devour a book as well as some dinner at the Book Fair Wild West Party on Tuesday, September 26, from 5:00 - 8:00pm. There will be a square dance party and several food trucks for your dining convenience. 

Wimpy Kid Pre-sale Opportunity: Diary of a Wimpy Kid 12: The Getaway is available for pre-order at the Book Fair. Stop by to purchase your copy before the fair closes at 4:00pm on Friday, Sept 29. A portion of each purchase benefits the Spicewood Library!

Book Fair - Volunteers Needed!

It takes many volunteers to make the Book Fair a success and we need your help! Please visit our Sign Up Genius page to volunteer for a short 2 hour shift. Thanks and see you at the Book Fair!

Please take a moment to join Spicewood PTA!
Your voice benefits your kids and your school! Joining doesn't mean you have to volunteer, it is simply a way to stay connected and help support many of the fun and educational programs and activities at Spicewood. In an effort to go paperless this year, please sign up through http://www.joinpta.org/. It only takes a minute!
Anyone is welcome to join PTA - parents, grandparents, neighbors, etc. Thank you for your continued support! 

Annual Auction- Gala Night
Save the Date! On Friday, November 10, Spicewood PTA will host Gala Night at Balcones Country Club.  As our largest fundraiser, this auction raises money for our students, programs and teachers!  We are actively seeking volunteers, in kind donations and business sponsorships.  Please contact Nicole Giannetta at spicewoodAuction@gmail.com to learn more. 


MARK YOUR CALENDAR!

Wednesday, September 20
7:00-7:40AM   Breakfast with Dads
We call for all dads and father figures to come join us at the Breakfast with Dads in the cafeteria. Students will be able to eat yummy breakfast with dads in the library and be released to their classrooms at 7:40AM. 

Wednesday, September 20
6:30-8:00PM   Westwood Learning Community Parent Forum
Meet Westwood Area Superintendent Rebecca Donald at our Learning Community Parent. 
Come out and tell us what’s important to you at the Forum. Mrs. Kim will also be in attendance.

Thursday, September 21
IB PYP Parent Information Night + PTA General Meeting #1
Come meet our IB Coordinator, Jessica Vance, and learn more the IB program about how you can best support your child in the PYP program here at Spicewood. The meeting will be located in the cafeteria.


Monday, September 25- Friday, September 29
Spicewood Annual Book Fair

Friday, September 29
Kids Invite Someone Special (K.I.S.S.) Cook-Out
During grade level lunch hours.

Thursday, October 5- Friday, October 6
Vision and Hearing 


Monday, October 9
No School for Students
Staff Development Day


Tuesday, October 10
No School for Students but it's our Student Led Conference Day


Wednesday, October 11
Fall Individual Picture Day




Monday, September 11, 2017

Updates from the Principal

Dear families and community members, 

I hope everyone is enjoying the cool weather. Thanks to those who came out to our Open House last Thursday. Hope everyone received helpful information from our wonderful teachers.This week our PTA is kicking off the first fundraiser of the school year, Adventure Dash Fun Run. For more information, please refer to This Week's News section. 


Celebrations

Spicewood Open House
We had a full house at our Open House last Thursday. We would like to thank all the parents who attended and for their partnership in education. Big shout-outs to teachers who dedicated their evening time to connect with parents! 



IB PYP 101


This portion of Mrs. Kim's letter is contributed by Mrs. Vance, our PYP Coordinator.

As a PYP school, our campus and classroom environments are spaces that encourage inquiry, investigation, exploration and play. This is done with furniture arrangement, materials available for students, collaboration, teachers, and student voice. After attending Open House, I’m sure you probably noticed many changes on our campus and in our classrooms. Last year our campus welcomed the addition of a Teaching Garden, our science lab has been transformed into an Inquiry Lab, and our library is also in the process of a makeover with more flexible seating and work spaces for our students.






Your child’s classroom most likely also has different tables, seating arrangements and choices, work spaces, and a variety of resources to be able to structure dynamic learning environment that provides ongoing opportunities for students to collaborate and engage in classroom and individual inquiries.





Listed below are a few resources about the benefits of flexible seating:


This Week's News

Adventure Dash Fun Run- PTA Fundraiser
This year we are introducing a new high energy fundraising event to Spicewood – the Adventure Dash Fun Run, which is part fun run, part obstacle course, and part fundraiser.  It kicked off last Wednesday with a team rally and will continue this week with team breakouts during P.E. culminating with the Adventure Dash on Friday, September 15th.  Students are to set a personal fundraising goal to raise money for the school. It's important parents help set up individual accounts and share it with friends and families near and far so that the child can meet the goal he/she set. You received a detailed instruction on how to help your child last Friday via Friday Folder. On Dash Day students will participate in a fun yet challenging obstacle course to show our students that with team work no obstacle is too hard to overcome.  Additionally throughout the ten days students will receive lessons on fitness, healthy living habits, teamwork and the importance of setting and accomplishing goals. Please see the official flyer for details that was sent out via Friday Folder. 

Volunteer & Homeroom Parent Training
There are lots of volunteer opportunities at Spicewood!  Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Tassie Howell, at SpicewoodPTAVolunteer@gmail.com with any interest or questions.  Check out our website for volunteer opportunities.  Your teachers will be talking about volunteer opportunities at Open House.  All volunteers must complete a quick training.  Volunteer training will be September 14th at 6:30 pm and September 15ht at 11:00 am in the Spicewood Library.  Homeroom parent training will follow volunteer training.   All volunteers must register with RRISD every school year and apply for RRISD’s background check.  

Math Pentathlon Club
We are actively looking for volunteers and coaches for all divisions for the 2017- 2018 academic year.  If you want to learn more, please see the PTA webpage or come see us at Open House.  

Saddle Up for the Book Fair!
The Scholastic Wild West Book Fair is a major fundraising event for the Spicewood Library. Proceeds from the book fair pay for author visits, storytellers, online resources (TumbleBooks, PebbleGo, e-books), and of course, BOOKS. Please mark your calendars and plan to visit us in the Spicewood Library for a Rootin’ Tootin’ good time. The Book Fair will be open daily starting Monday, September 25, through Friday, September 29, from 7:45am - 4:00pm. Look for more information in the weeks to come, or visit us on our Book Fair webpage. YEE HAW, can’t wait to see you at the book fair!

REFLECTIONS Creativity Contest

This PTA-sponsored program allows your child to come up with her or his own way to express this year’s theme: Within Reach. Children can enter as many pieces as they’d like across six categories (literature, visual arts, photography, film production, dance choreography, and musical composition). Your child does not have to be an accomplished artist or expert writer to enter. It’s all about a child’s interpretation and expression of the theme. The deadline for submitting entries is Friday, October 27, 2017. For more information, including rules and entry forms, check out the Spicewood PTA Reflections website. Please email Thea Woodruff with any questions (thea.woodruff@gmail.com).

Please take a moment to join Spicewood PTA!
Your voice benefits your kids and your school! Joining doesn't mean you have to volunteer, it is simply a way to stay connected and help support many of the fun and educational programs and activities at Spicewood. In an effort to go paperless this year, please sign up through http://www.joinpta.org/. It only takes a minute!
Anyone is welcome to join PTA - parents, grandparents, neighbors, etc. Thank you for your continued support! 

Annual Auction- Gala Night
Save the Date! On Friday, November 10, Spicewood PTA will host Gala Night at Balcones Country Club.  As our largest fundraiser, this auction raises money for our students, programs and teachers!  We are actively seeking volunteers, in kind donations and business sponsorships.  Please contact Nicole Giannetta at spicewoodAuction@gmail.com to learn more. 


MARK YOUR CALENDAR!

Monday, September 11- Friday, September 15
Adventure Dash Run Fundraiser

Wednesday, September 20
7:00-7:40AM   Breakfast with Dads
We call for all dads and father figures to come join us at the Breakfast with Dads in the cafeteria. Students will be able to eat yummy breakfast with dads in the library and be released to their classrooms at 7:40AM. 

Wednesday, September 20
6:30-8:00PM   Westwood Learning Community Parent Forum
Meet Westwood Area Superintendent Rebecca Donald at our Learning Community Parent. 
Come out and tell us what’s important to you at the Forum. Mrs. Kim will also be in attendance.

Thursday, September 21
IB PYP Parent Information Night + PTA General Meeting #1
More information TBA


Monday, September 25- Friday, September 29
Spicewood Annual Book Fair

Friday, September 29
Kids Invite Someone Special (K.I.S.S.) Cook-Out
During grade level lunch hours.

Thursday, October 5- Friday, October 6
Vision and Hearing 


Monday, October 9
No School for Students
Staff Development Day


Tuesday, October 10
No School for Students but it's our Student Led Conference Day


Wednesday, October 11
Fall Individual Picture Day





Monday, September 4, 2017

Updates from the Principal

Dear families and community members,

It's been a difficult week for all of us Texas residents watching many people lose their homes and loved ones due to Hurricane Harvey. We have talked to a few parents whose kids were expressing a lot of anxiety over Harvey and relatives in Houston. Our wonderful counselor, Mrs. Kentopp, posted some resources on her website on Talking to Kids about Hurricane Harvey. We thank each and everyone of you who sent items to donate last Thursday and Friday. 


Celebrations

Hurricane Harvey Donations 
We are completely humbled by all of the donations our community has dropped off last week! Thank you for being such a caring community that takes ACTION. 



IB PYP 101


This portion of Mrs. Kim's letter is contributed by Mrs. Vance, our PYP Coordinator.

As teachers and students are getting to know each other at the start of the school year, they are primarily working to set up systems and structures with their new community of learners.  The unit of inquiry, Who We Are, is a natural start of the year for most grade levels on our campus. This unit primarily focuses on different beliefs, values, and human relationships. The past two weeks, our students have explored these ideas (in relation to their classroom and school community) through a variety of read alouds, classroom discussions/meetings, and other team building activities.

What's unique to an IB classroom is the role that the teacher plays. As a guide or facilitator, the PYP teachers provide learning experiences that allow students to construct their own (more valuable) meaning of concepts explored in the classroom. In order to participate in this innovative and effective learning environment, however, the classroom must first establish Essential Agreements, or guidelines that all students agree upon. The creation of the Essential Agreements is one of the first ways that teachers provide students with an opportunity to share their thinking. It models the framework for the learning community, displaying the value of student input and feedback as part of the learning process. The Essential Agreements are visited throughout the year, being added to and/or edited as the learning community sees fit. Take a look at how these are shaping up in some of our classrooms.



Ask your child about their classroom Essential Agreements and what part they played in creating this living document in learning even more about Who We Are and be sure to find these in your child's classroom on Open House Thursday, September 7th!

This Week's News

Letters for the greater Houston Area Affected by Hurricane Harvey
Parents, we'd like to have students write letters of encouragement to people and/or gratitude to the responders in the Houston area. Our goal is to get these letters/drawings of encouragement to shelters that have a lot of children and also to the first responders. One of our parents is able to get in contact with the Mayor and County Judge's office to find out which shelter(s) would be best and a contact there. The family is willing to coordinate the delivery of the letters once they come in. I thought this was a great caring project families can do on a long weekend. If we can have students bring back the letters/drawings by Wednesday of this week, students can drop it off at the front where we will have a collection box waiting as they make their way into school on Tuesday and Wendesday. Please note that this activity is completely optional and voluntary. 

Student Arrival
All students are to be dropped off at the front entrance beginning this week. Parents are encouraged not to walk their children to their classrooms anymore to instill independence and responsibility.

Pick-Up & Front Portico Area
Parents and guardians, we have over 800 students exiting the building at the end of the day. Once you pick up your child(ren), please vacate from the front portico area swiftly to alleviate congestion. We respectfully ask that parents catch up with one another away from the front area. 

Birthday Cupcakes/Donuts
With so many new families joining us this school year, we are communicating that Spicewood does not allow birthday cupcakes and donuts in our classrooms. We try to promote healthy and caring learning environment. Spicewood encourages parents to make birthday favors with non-edible items children can use such as pencils, stickers, erasers etc. These favors will be passed out to every children in the classroom at the end of the day. 

Spicewood Open House
Please mark your calendar to attend our Open House on Thursday, September 7. Please note that this is for adults only due to limited space. Please plan accordingly in advance. We will also have PTA represented in the cafeteria for the duration of the Open House. They'll showcase student clubs they sponsor throughout the school year and also have PTA T-shirts on sale. 

Adventure Dash Fun Run
This year we are introducing a new high energy event to Spicewood – the Adventure Dash Fun Run, which is part fun run, part obstacle course, and part fundraiser.  It will kick off on Wednesday, September 6th with a team rally and will continue the following week with team breakouts during P.E. culminating with the Adventure Dash on Friday, September 15th.  On Dash Day students will participate in a fun yet challenging obstacle course to show our students that with team work no obstacle is too hard to overcome.  Additionally throughout the ten days students will receive lessons on fitness, healthy living habits, teamwork and the importance of setting and accomplishing goals. Please see the official flyer for details that was sent out via Friday Folder. 

Volunteer & Homeroom Parent Training
There are lots of volunteer opportunities at Spicewood!  Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Tassie Howell, at SpicewoodPTAVolunteer@gmail.com with any interest or questions.  Check out our website for volunteer opportunities.  Your teachers will be talking about volunteer opportunities at Open House.  All volunteers must complete a quick training.  Volunteer training will be September 14th at 6:30 pm and September 15ht at 11:00 am in the Spicewood Library.  Homeroom parent training will follow volunteer training.   All volunteers must register with RRISD every school year and apply for RRISD’s background check.  

Math Pentathlon Club
We are actively looking for volunteers and coaches for all divisions for the 2017- 2018 academic year.  If you want to learn more, please see the PTA webpage or come see us at Open House.  

Saddle Up for the Book Fair!
The Scholastic Wild West Book Fair is a major fundraising event for the Spicewood Library. Proceeds from the book fair pay for author visits, storytellers, online resources (TumbleBooks, PebbleGo, e-books), and of course, BOOKS. Please mark your calendars and plan to visit us in the Spicewood Library for a Rootin’ Tootin’ good time. The Book Fair will be open daily starting Monday, September 25, through Friday, September 29, from 7:45am - 4:00pm. Look for more information in the weeks to come, or visit us on our Book Fair webpage. YEE HAW, can’t wait to see you at the book fair!

Please take a moment to join Spicewood PTA!
Your voice benefits your kids and your school! Joining doesn't mean you have to volunteer, it is simply a way to stay connected and help support many of the fun and educational programs and activities at Spicewood. In an effort to go paperless this year, please sign up through http://www.joinpta.org/. It only takes a minute!
Anyone is welcome to join PTA - parents, grandparents, neighbors, etc. Thank you for your continued support! 

Spicewood Online Directory - Don’t Be Left Out!
The Spicewood PTA student directory is online via www.MySchoolAnywhere.com which means you will not only get access to our family contact information much sooner, you will also be able to access it online or via your smart phone anytime, anywhere! In
addition to being able to access the directory online, families will also have the option of printing a grade level directory for personal use.



MARK YOUR CALENDAR!

Monday, September 4
Labor Day
NO SCHOOL

Thursday, September 7
Spicewood Open House
5:00-5:30PM   Kinder & 1st Grade
5:30-6:00PM   2nd & 3rd Grade
6:00-6:30PM   4th & 5th Grade
5:00-6:00PM   Specials, Spanish, ITS, IB Coordinator in the library
5:00-6:30PM   PTA in the cafeteria


Monday, September 11- Friday, September 15
Adventure Dash Run Fundraiser
More information TBA.

Wednesday, September 20
7:00-7:40AM   Breakfast with Dads
We call for all dads and father figures to come join us at the Breakfast with Dads in the cafeteria. Students will be able to eat yummy breakfast with dads in the library and be released to their classrooms at 7:40AM. 

Thursday, September 21
IB PYP Parent Information Night + PTA General Meeting #1
More information TBA


Monday, September 25- Friday, September 29
Spicewood Annual Book Fair

Friday, September 29
Kids Invite Someone Special (K.I.S.S.) Cook-Out
During grade level lunch hours.

Thursday, October 5- Friday, October 6
Vision and Hearing 


Monday, October 9
No School for Students
Staff Development Day


Tuesday, October 10
No School for Students but it's our Student Led Conference Day


Wednesday, October 11
Fall Individual Picture Day




Monday, August 28, 2017

Updates from the Principal

Dear families and community members,

I hope everyone is safe through the inclement weather we've had this past weekend. Spicewood will begin classes at 9:40AM today as informed yesterday. Spicewood had a bit of minor water damage; however, all has been reported to the district and will be addressed in a timely manner. The first week of school has come and gone. We're already jiving into the groove of things here at Spicewood. I'd like to remind parents to drive safely and respectfully in the morning and afternoon when you drop off/pick up your child(ren). All golf carts must adhere to the same expectations as other vehicles. 

Celebrations

Great First Week of School!
Thanks to all the students, teachers and parents! We had an amazing first week of school! Our students were ready to learn on the first day and they owned it like champions! Special kudos to our amazing teachers who worked countless hours to prepare for an amazing start of the school year! 



This Week's News


Drop off & Pick-Up
I understand the traffic has been slow and frustrating. However, I need all stakeholders to abide by traffic rules and expectations to ensure safety of everyone. Please take a moment to study the map below. Please note that all golf carts must adhere to the same expectations as other vehicles. 

Street Sign Confusion
On Olson Dr where our parents are allowed to stop & drop off without parking, the signs have been changed without notice and created some confusion. I have contacted the city and they agreed that the signs have not been installed properly (two signs should switch places at this point). I was promised someone will come out this week to fix the signs. 


Change in Policy- Doctor's Note
The district has changed their policy about doctor notes for partial day absences. In the past, parents could write a note that their child was at the doctor. However, parent notes will no longer be accepted for partial day absences. They are accepted and encouraged for all day absences. If your child is at the doctor at 9:00 and comes to school for part of the day, a note from the doctor is needed to keep the child from being marked absent. 

Important Message from Nurse Sam
Our new nurse Sam Kim RN wants to remind families that today is a good day to bring in medications needed for school, like Epi-pens, inhalers, and any daily medications prescribed by your MD.  RRISD has a new policy that the medication permission slip needs to be completed by the MD before you bring in your medications.  We cannot administer any prescription medications without permission from the MD.  If you have any questions, please call the Spicewood Clinic at (512) 428-3607.  

Student Arrival
School doors open at 7:20AM when staff members are on duty. If students are not in their classroom, students will be counted as tardy starting at 7:40AM

This will be the last week that parents are allowed to walk their child(ren) all the way to their classrooms. Starting on Tuesday, September 5, parents are asked to drop off their children at the front entrance of the school. 


Spicewood Open House
Please mark your calendar to attend our Open House on Thursday, September 7. Please note that this is for adults only due to limited space. Please plan accordingly in advance. 

"Adopt" the Spicewood Teaching Garden:
Thanks to all the volunteers last year and throughout the summer, the Spicewood Garden is thriving! It’s a new school year and volunteers are needed to water, weed, and maintain the Spicewood Garden. This is a great opportunity for you and your family to have an up close and personal experience in the garden. Not a gardener? That’s ok!

Volunteering is on a weekly basis and, before your week begins, you will receive detailed instructions about what the garden needs at that time. The garden is a unique learning space for the teachers and students at Spicewood. With your help, the teachers and students can continue to enjoy this hands-on, outdoor learning experience. SIGN UP HERE NOW!

Saddle Up for the Book Fair!
The Scholastic Wild West Book Fair is a major fundraising event for the Spicewood Library. Proceeds from the book fair pay for author visits, storytellers, online resources (TumbleBooks, PebbleGo, e-books), and of course, BOOKS. Please mark your calendars and plan to visit us in the Spicewood Library for a Rootin’ Tootin’ good time. The Book Fair will be open daily starting Monday, September 25, through Friday, September 29, from 7:45am - 4:00pm. Look for more information in the weeks to come, or visit us on our Book Fair webpage (TBA). YEE HAW, can’t wait to see you at the book fair!

Please take a moment to join Spicewood PTA!
Your voice benefits your kids and your school! Joining doesn't mean you have to volunteer, it is simply a way to stay connected and help support many of the fun and educational programs and activities at Spicewood. In an effort to go paperless this year, please sign up through http://www.joinpta.org/. It only takes a minute!
Anyone is welcome to join PTA - parents, grandparents, neighbors, etc. Thank you for your continued support! 

Spicewood Online Directory - Don’t Be Left Out!
The Spicewood PTA student directory is online via www.MySchoolAnywhere.com which means you will not only get access to our family contact information much sooner, you will also be able to access it online or via your smart phone anytime, anywhere! In
addition to being able to access the directory online, families will also have the option of printing a grade level directory for personal use.



MARK YOUR CALENDAR!

Monday, September 4
Labor Day
NO SCHOOL

Thursday, September 7
Spicewood Open House
5:00-5:30PM   Kinder & 1st Grade
5:30-6:00PM   2nd & 3rd Grade
6:00-6:30PM   4th & 5th Grade
5:00-6:00PM   Specials, Spanish, ITS, IB Coordinator in the library

Monday, September 11- Friday, September 15
Adventure Dash Run Fundraiser
More information TBA.

Wednesday, September 20
7:00-7:40AM   Breakfast with Dads
We call for all dads and father figures to come join us at the Breakfast with Dads in the cafeteria. Students will be able to eat yummy breakfast with dads in the library and be released to their classrooms at 7:40AM. 

Thursday, September 21
IB PYP Parent Information Night + PTA General Meeting #1
More information TBA


Monday, September 25- Friday, September 29
Spicewood Annual Book Fair

Friday, September 29
Kids Invite Someone Special (K.I.S.S.) Cook-Out
During grade level lunch hours.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Updates from the Principal

Dear families and community members,

We are excited to see all of our students and parents this afternoon at Meet the Teacher! Our teachers have been working hard in their classrooms to be ready to receive our students. I can't wait to fill our halls and classrooms with our students!  



Celebrations

Spicewood Leadership Wins Another Round of 60K Innovative Schools Grant
Last school year Spicewood Leadership won a 50K Innovative Schools Grant to transform our old science lab into the new and innovative Inquiry Lab. We won another round of 60K Innovative Schools Grant and I'm pleased to share the overview of our grant proposal below.

Spicewood is an IB world school implementing the Primary Years Programme (PYP). Our program focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer and is defined by six transdisciplinary themes of global significance. Inquiry based learning is at the heart of the IB framework and to that end we would like to extend the creative learning that started in our Inquiry Lab (Cycle 1 grant of 50K last school year) on campus into our Atrium area by further creating additional flexible learning space for students and teachers that will foster creativity and innovation. Based on teacher feedback on Cycle 1 grant, teachers would like more accessibility to the resources by creating Mobile 3D Printer Carts and adding classroom assigned iPads, which will continue and expand the innovative learning school-wide. In order to facilitate this vision, we will need to purchase technology for the Atrium space that promotes flexible, multipurpose, collaborative and explorative learning experiences with a one-year Innovation Learning Assistant position who will organize materials, facilitate activities, work collaboratively with the PYP Coordinator and teams to best integrate the learning in the most meaningful way. We will need to purchase additional technology devices such as additional 3D printers, mobile carts, and iPads. We will provide staff training on the Kagan Cooperative Learning structures which will allow for increased student interaction, truly putting the inquiry into the hands of the learners. Teachers will learn how to best facilitate conversations amongst the students, in turn shifting their role to facilitator of innovative learning.

Spicewood Earns ALL Academic Distinction Designations Again!
Congratulations to the Spicewood community for earning ALL Academic Distinction Designations released by Texas Education Agency! We are one of the two schools that earned all possible distinctions in the district and one of the 3 schools amongst all surrounding school districts. We are so proud of our students, teachers/staff, parents and community members!  



This Week's News


Meet the Teacher Event
Kindergarten Orientation is today from 2:00 – 2:45PM. Parents and students will begin their visit in the cafeteria and then proceed to the classrooms after introductions. Spicewood’s Meet the Teacher Event for all students in 1st-5th grades will also be today from 2:30- 3:15PM.  During this event, students and parents can go to their teacher’s classroom, meet their teacher, drop off their school supplies, collect their “First Day Packet of Information,” and review bus routes provided. 

Important Message from Nurse Sam
Our new nurse Sam Kim RN wants to remind families that today is a good day to bring in medications needed for school, like Epi-pens, inhalers, and any daily medications prescribed by your MD.  RRISD has a new policy that the medication permission slip needs to be completed by the MD before you bring in your medications.  We cannot administer any prescription medications without permission from the MD.  If you have any questions, please call the Spicewood Clinic at (512) 428-3607.  

Kinder Kleenex on Tuesday
Parents of kindergarten students are invited to join the leadership in the library on Tuesday at 8AM after drop-off. We will be here as moral support and to ease your mind by answering to any questions you may have. :) 

e-Newletter Subscription
Our system only allows one email per household to automatically receive school emails. 
For any additional recipients, they can to go RRISD e-News Community Subscription and sign up specifically for Spicewood ES. 

I do want to make a note that the additional recipients will be considered "Community members" in the system, which means, if the school chooses to send an email out just to Spicewood parents/guardians, the community members will not receive the email. It will only be sent to the email address that we have in our system- one that you provided when you registered your child. Updates from the Principal will always be sent to ALL members- teachers, parents and community members. 

Bus Permit- Message from Our Registrar
Transportation will continue on with the Bus Permit Request procedure this school year. Any student who will ride a bus that he/she does not normally ride or will get off their bus at a different stop will need to have a Bus Permit completed and submitted to the Spicewood office. You can find the Bus Permit as a link on our school website. The permit MUST be submitted in order to add/change bus transportation for your child. If you have any further questions, please contact our registrar at Cindy_Vechan@roundrockisd.org. 

After School Care Options
If you're wondering which day care programs are in partnership with Spicewood, please refer to the "After School Care Options" document posted on our school website under Parent Resource.

School Supplies
Please bring your child(ren)'s school supplies to our Meet the Teacher event on Monday, August 21 so you can drop them off in their homerooms. If you cannot attend the event, you may bring them on the first day of school on Tuesday, August 22. School supplies list is available on our school website(School supplies purchased through PTA will have been delivered directly to classrooms.)

Student Arrival
School doors open at 7:20AM when staff members are on duty. If students are not in their classroom, students will be counted as tardy starting at 7:40AM

For the first 2 weeks of school (August 22-September 1, 2017), parents are allowed to walk their child(ren) all the way to their classrooms. Starting on Tuesday, September 5, parents are asked to drop off their children at the front entrance of the school. 

Student Dismissal
Students should know whether they will be riding a school bus, going to after-school daycare, staying at YMCA in the cafeteria, walking home, or a parent pick-up. Parents will have an opportunity to share this information with homeroom teacher at the Meet the Teacher event or via parent note to teacher on the first day of school. Kindergarten students will be out in the portico at 2:50PM with their homeroom teachers. All other students will be exiting to the portico area starting at 2:55PM. If you plan to drive through the circle drive during pick-up, it is very helpful when parents have student's name(s) written/printed on a piece of paper placed on the dashboard of their car. 

During dismissal, sometimes students are grabbed by parents out of class line as the class is in the process of heading outside or while teachers are tending to other students. This prevents teachers from knowing by whom students are picked up and creates much anxiety. Please wait until students arrive at the portico area and make sure to acknowledge child's teacher, either by making an eye contact or speaking with them briefly, as you pick up your student. We want to ensure safety of each child by making sure students are dismissed properly to parents/guardians, not strangers. Once you pick up your child(ren), we ask that everyone clears out of the front entrance area. We'd like to keep the front portico area circulating at all times to alleviate congestion. 

Drop-Off & Pick-Up Traffic
No cars should be parked in the circle drive at all times during the drop-off & pick-up time. It is only for drive through drop-off/pick-up. Part of Olson Drive is also available for Stop-and-Go Drop-off in the morning. Hope Church is always very gracious in allowing us to use their Northeast parking lot. Please avoid using their circle drive (as shown below) at all times as the church wishes to reserve the usage only for their church members. There's also some street parking available on Tin Cup Dr. and Swan Dr. I respectfully ask that all drivers please drive slow and alerted at all times during the drop-off & pick-up time. [See the attached picture]















Please Do Not Use Staff Parking Lot
Parents and/or students are not allowed to walk or drive through the staff parking lot at all times to ensure safety. All golf carts must follow the same expectations as other vehicles. 

Lunch Account- Message from Food Services
You can visit our school cafeteria or give the money to your student to pay with either cash or check.  The cafeteria staff will apply the funds provided directly into your students meal fund account.  If paying by check, please make it payable to RRISD Food Service, include your driver’s license number, phone number and add your student’s name and school ID number to the memo field of the check.

Or you can pay online with a credit card, debit card or draft from your checking account via   payment transaction service.  A transaction fee of $1.95 per transaction will be applied.  Visit MySchoolBucks.com online or download their app on your smart phone.

Accounts through MySchoolBucks are free.  There is only a fee to perform an online money transaction. Transactions made through the school cafeteria are free of charge and will be able to be managed at no cost through MySchoolBucks.  Other features such as low balance notifications, access to your student’s cafeteria meal history and managing accounts for multiple students are free. 

For returning students, parents can access the online payment system, MySchoolBucks   and use student ID# to make sure students have sufficient amount prior to the first day of school. 

For new students (including kindergarten students), parents will receive a packet on the first day of school which will include student registration form with their student ID#. Using the student ID#, parents can set up an account (very easy!) using the online payment system stated above. 

Free, Reduced Meal Application
Application forms are being distributed to all households with a letter informing households of the availability of free and reduced price meals for their children.  Applications also are available at the administrative office in each school and at the Food Service office located at 16255 Great Oaks Drive, Suite 100 in Round Rock.  To apply for free and reduced price meals, households must fill out an online application at https://roundrockisd.org/departments/food-services/freereduced-price-meals/ or a paper application and return it to the school or Food Services office.  Applications may be submitted anytime during the school year.  The information households provide on the application will be used for the purpose of determining eligibility and verification of data.  Applications may be verified by the school officials at any time during the school year.

Breakfast Available in the Cafeteria
Breakfast will be available for purchase for $1.35 this school year. Breakfast line is open from 7:25-7:40AM in the cafeteria. Students who qualify to receive Free/Reduced Meals will be able to eat breakfast at no cost. 


Meal Prices
Federal regulations require a minimum $.10 lunch meal price increase every year until our meal price matches the government reimbursement rate that we receive for free students. Therefore, meal prices for the coming year are as follows:
Elementary Paid Breakfast       $1.35               Elementary Paid Lunch            $2.70

Secondary Paid Breakfast        $1.35               Secondary Paid Lunch             $2.95

All Reduced Breakfast              $0.30               All Reduced Lunch                   $0.40

Adult Breakfast                         $2.25               Adult Lunch                              $3.60

Administrator Office Hours
Parents, as most of you already know, I pride myself in spending a lot of time in the classrooms with students and teachers to support instruction. For that very reason, if you happen to stop by or walk in, I would most likely be unavailable to meet with you. If a parent would like to schedule a meeting with the principal and/or assistant principal, I ask that an appointment is made with the principal’s secretary, Courtney Torres. Please share with her briefly the topic of discussion when scheduling an appointment so I can gather necessary information prior to our meeting. You can reach her at (512) 428-3602 or via email. Her email address is courtney_torres@roundrockisd.org. You're always always welcome to come see me so please do not hesitate to make an appointment! 


MARK YOUR CALENDAR!

Monday, August 21
Meet the Teachers 
2:00-2:45PM   Kindergarten [Cafeteria]
2:30-3:15PM   1st-5th Grade [Classrooms]

Tuesday, August 22
First Day of School for Students
8:00-8:30AM    Kinder Kleenex
Kindergarten parents are encouraged to join the leadership in the library.  

Monday, September 4
Labor Day
NO SCHOOL

Thursday, September 7
Spicewood Open House
5:00-5:30PM   Kinder & 1st Grade
5:30-6:00PM   2nd & 3rd Grade
6:00-6:30PM   4th & 5th Grade
5:00-6:00PM   Specials, Spanish, ITS, IB Coordinator in the library

Monday, September 11- Friday, September 15
Adventure Dash Run Fundraiser
More information TBA.

Wednesday, September 20
7:00-7:40AM   Breakfast with Dads
We call for all dads and father figures to come join us at the Breakfast with Dads in the cafeteria. Students will be able to eat yummy breakfast with dads in the library and be released to their classrooms at 7:40AM. 

Thursday, September 21
IB PYP Parent Information Night + PTA General Meeting #1
More information TBA


Monday, September 25- Friday, September 29
Spicewood Annual Book Fair

Friday, September 29
Kids Invite Someone Special (K.I.S.S.) Cook-Out
During grade level lunch hours.