Friday, October 25, 2013

Updates from the Principal- Celebrations from Last Week Included

Dear families and community, 

I'd like to start the newsletter by recognizing our wonderful Spicewood teachers and staff who have been going above and beyond with our students and families throughout the past 9 weeks. Our teachers have been holding student-led fall conferences to share student goals with parents/guardians for sometime and will be wrapping up this Wednesday afternoon during Early Release. If you have not set up a time for you and your child to meet with the teacher, please be sure to do so; it is an important opportunity for you to recognize your child's goals and discuss how we can support them to reach the goals this school year as a team. 

I am starting this week's newsletter with many celebrations from last week. I appreciate your time in reading through the newsletter each week. :) 

Celebrations from Last Week!

IB PYP Workshops in Los Angeles, CA

Ms. Marvel- our IB Coordinator- and I had a great opportunity to attend the IB PYP Workshops in LA, CA from Saturday, October 19 through Monday, October 21. We participated in a 2.5-day workshop on Inquiry Based Learning with fellow educators from all over the United States. As an administrator new to IB PYP, I gained much knowledge on what inquiry based learning looks like in classrooms. 

Spicewood Annual Fun Run
When we have such a great event like Fun Run at Spicewood, I'm constantly reminded of how lucky our school is to receive so much support from our parents and community! I'm so grateful and words cannot express how Spicewood appreciates all that parents and community members do to enrich the learning of our students. The weather was also perfect to have an outdoor Fun Run event with a combination of sun and breeze. In addition to our wonderful parent volunteers and staff members, we had 10+ business vendors that came out to promote a healthy life style to our students and families. Thanks to all who volunteered and all who participated! 

IB Parent Info. Night

Thank you, parents, for coming out and spending your evening time with us to learn more about International Baccalaureate- Primary Years Program (IB PYP) last Thursday. If anyone who was not able to make it is interested, you are more than welcome to view the presentation and the document that explains the IB PYP in detail.  
Mrs. Marvel leading a group of parents into an IB PYP conversation
Art Volunteers in the Classroom- 2nd Round
Our parents are fabulous in showing support in so many different ways- one being art volunteers in our art classrooms. Our first graders were fully engaged in rich conversations with parent teachers when I visited them Friday morning. 
Wonderful parents and our art teachers- Mrs. Deb & Mrs. Raybourn- with our 1st graders
This Week's News

Meet the Faces of Spicewood
Please be sure to take a moment to meet our wonderful staff: Mr. Martin Bottoms (4th Grade Teacher) & Miss Lora Vechan (3rd Grade Teacher). 

No Costumes/Dress-ups Allowed on Halloween
Halloween is not a celebrated holiday in the RRISD schools.No dress-ups/costumes are allowed at school on Thursday, October 31st, in our effort to minimize any distraction from learning. 

Analog Clocks at Home
Parents, I am noticing in the classrooms that many of our students are having difficulties with elapsed time and reading analog clocks- an essential skill that the state of Texas holds our children accountable for. I'd love for our parents to have at least one analog clock available and displayed at home for our children and practice how to read time and process the concept of elapsed time together. This will reinforce the learning that students receive at school. 

Drop-Off Area for Carpool Vehicles
The end of the drive way past the front entrance and the parking area is designated for carpool vehicles (4+ students/car, daycare bus, after-school vans, etc). If you're here to pick a child or two,  please adhere to the parking areas. 

Tardy Phone Calls
Parents, I will be making personal phone calls to the parents of students with excessive tardies throughout the next two weeks. Please support us in getting our students start their day in their classroom by 7:45AM every day. 

Spicewood Principals' Pride
We will be celebrating the success of our students as we invite our parents to join us at the Princpals' Pride assemblies.Today we will be celebrating with Kindergarten through 2nd grade students from 8-8:30AM in the cafeteria. On Wednesday October 30 [please note the date change], we will be recognizing 3rd through 5th grade students. We would love to have you with us! 

Coins for Coats
We're finishing up our Coins for Coats this Tuesday. Students can bring in coins, bills or checks to donate to the cause. One class each from primary (K-2) and intermediate (3rd-5th) level that raises the most money will get a flashlight reading time in the library with Mrs. Reeb. Come check out the bulletin board in the cafeteria that charts the progress of each class. 

Report Cards
Parents, you will receive your child(ren)'s first 9-week report card(s) via their Friday folder on November 8. With student report cards, we will be including the School Report Card issued by the state of Texas, informing parents of Spicewood performance as well. 

5th Grade Field Trip to the Outdoor School 
Our entire 5th grade will be taking a trip down to Camp Champions in Marble Falls, TX to the Outdoor School. For more information, please visit Mrs. Morley's website

Spicewood Annual Silent Auction
Please mark your calendar for our annual Silent Auction! It'll take place on Friday, November 15 at Balcones Country Club. This year's theme is "Roaring Back to the '20s." The auction raises significant funds for many programs at our school- field trips, cultural arts/enrichment, IB PYP program, technology purchases, classroom supplies and teacher training- just to name a few! Tickets are on sale for $20/person. For more information, please visit our PTA website.

5th Annual Spicewood Chess Tournament 
Registration fees will increase after this Friday, November 1 so please register now! The tournament will take place on Saturday, November 16 and is projected to be one of the largest scholastic tournaments of the year. If your child is planning to attend, please register as soon as possible. Depending on turnout, spaces may be limited. This year's tournament is open to all elementary students. There will be a special section for kinder/1st graders. Only requirement for beginner students is that they must know how to checkmate. For more information, please visit our website


Monday, October 28- Tuesday, October 29
Coins for Coats

Monday, October 28
8:00-8:30AM  Principals' Pride- Kindergarten, 1st Grade & 2nd Grade
Please join us in the cafeteria. 

Wednesday, October 30
8:00-8:30AM  Principals' Pride- 3rd Grade, 4th Grade & 5th Grade
Please join us in the cafeteria. 

Wednesday, October 30
Early Release Day for Elementary and Middle School
Last Day for Spicewood Fall Conferences

All students will be dismissed at 12:45PM. Please plan accordingly. 

Friday, November 1
Author's Visit - Lucas Miller
8:00-8:45AM         2nd & 3rd Grades [Cafeteria]
9:00-9:45AM         4th & 5th Grades [Cafeteria]
10:00-10:45AM    1st Grade [Library]
11:00-11:45AM    Kindergarten [Library]

Friday, November 1 - Friday, Novembem 15
Round Rock Fall 2013 Annual Canned Food Drive
Please help our local food pantry by donating canned & non-perishable food. You can send the canned goods to school with your child(ren) starting on Friday, November 1. For more information, please view the official flyer

Wednesday, November 6- Friday, November 8
5th Grade Field Trip to the Outdoor School 
Our entire 5th grade will be taking a trip down to Camp Champions in Marble Falls, TX to the Outdoor School. For more information, please visit Mrs. Morley's website.

Friday, November 8
Report Cards Go Home

Friday, November 15
6:00-11:00PM   Spicewood Annual Silent Auction 
At Balcones Country Club

Saturday, November 16
9:00AM-5:30PM   5th Annual Spicewood Chess Tournament 

Thursday, November 21
5:30-8:30PM A Night of Pastabilities- Westwood HS Silent Auction
Westwood HS Class of 2015 would like to cordinally invite the community to "A Night of Pastabilities." It is a spaghetti dinner and silent auction to help fund the Westwood Jr/Sr Prom. For more information, please visit Westwood HS website

Wednesday, November 27- Friday, November 29
Thanksgiving Holiday
School is closed for students and staff.