Monday, February 8, 2016

Updates from the Leadership Team

Dear families and community,

This week we say farewell to Mrs. Dusterhoff as she concludes her time at Spicewood. Her continued support to our community, staff and students is appreciated. Ms. Kim will be returning toward the end of this week. We know she is looking forward to seeing you all again!


2016 Austin Regional Science Festival
Our Annual Science Fair was a huge success once again! The following students will advance to the Science Fair Regionals taking place on Feb. 17th - 20th at the Palmer Event Center: 
4th Grade: Ava D., Lorren E., Dana K., Shalin L., Mason M., Elise T.
5th Grade: Bishop B., Nandini D., Sophia D., Claire D., Garrett H., Nikki S., Prayag S., Ethan V., Cooper W., Emilie S.

National School Counselors Week
Our ever supportive and amazing counselor, Ms. Hougham, was showered with gratitude last week as we honored her during National School Counselors Week. Ms. Houghman does an amazing job giving extra support to teachers and students each and every day!

IB PYP 101
This portion of Mrs. Kim's letter is contributed by Mrs. Vance, our PYP Coordinator.

In the spirit of inquiry, we provide students with a multitude of learning experiences that allow them to ask questions and do individual/collaborative) research to construct meaning in the most authentic and meaningful manner. 

Our fifth grade students are beginning to construct their own meaning as they begin their Sharing the Planet unit. Within this unit, students explore the availability of different resources and later make connections as to how humans have a great impact on their availability. This past week, students have begun learning about different types of energy sources through research. To help support the students inquiry, students utilize peer to peer collaboration, data collection and in Ms. Mitchell's classroom, expert presentations. 

Students were given the opportunity for some hands on learning with a variety of solar panels, experimenting and playing with the different possibilities of that energy source, in turn deepening their understanding of energy sources. Following this learning experience, students returned to the classroom to reflect and sort out their new learning through whole class discussion. Through community support and collaboration, the fifth graders were given a real world experience and the opportunity to apply their knowledge.

Want to be more involved? How can you support your child at home? Be sure to keep up with our keep up with all things IB related at our PYP Spicewood Blog
This Week's News

Spicewood's Twilight Carnival Information Meeting
This event is fun for the whole family and an important PTA fundraiser for the school.  In order to make Carnival a success we need the help of fellow parents!  Please come to an informational brainstorming session on Friday, February 19, after drop off (7:45am-9am). We will gather in the school library to share ideas for the spring event and solicit help for a variety of roles. If you have any questions in the meantime, please let us know. Stephanie Engels ( or Sandy Parent (, Carnival co-chairs.

RRISD Kindergarten Round-Up 
Do you have a child who will be 5 years old on or before September 1, 2016? If so, it’s time to start getting ready for Kindergarten! Spicewood will be hosting a Kinder Round-Up registration day for incoming kindergartners on Monday, March 7, from 9AM to 2PM. Parents/guardians must bring the following documents: 1) Child's official birth certificate; 2) Child's immunization record; 3) Child's social security card (preferred but not required); 4) Proof of residence within the school attendance zone (contract on house, lease agreement, actual title to house, current RRISD tax statement, or current utility bill indicating the address and the adult's name.) You should still come to registration even if you do not have all of the above information. Parents will be given notice of when these items are due. For more information, regarding RRISD registration policies, please visit the RRISD Kinder Round-Up page.

Spicewood Kinder Round-Up Events

Sending your little one off to Kindergarten is an exciting and somewhat overwhelming time. Spicewood is committed to help make this transition into elementary school as smooth as possible. Spicewood Kinder Round-Up Events are designed to provide opportunities for parents/guardians and children to become acquainted with Spicewood as well as with future classmates. Every month, beginning in March and culminating in August, we will be hosting events for you and your child to attend together. Please visit the Spicewood Kinder Round-Up Events page for a list of events and to RSVP. We look forward to seeing you.


Thursday, February 11
5:00 PM -8:00PM 5th Grade Spirit Night @ Bush's Chicken (hosted by PTA)
Coach Robertson, Coach Berry, Mr. Parks and Mrs. Page will also be in attendance

Monday, February 15
President's Day- No School for Students

Friday, February 19
WatchDOGS on campus

Thursday, February 25
PTA General Meeting

Tuesday, March 1
5:30-8:00 One World, One Night
Located in the Cafeteria

Wednesday, March 2
Early Release
All students are released at 12:45. Please plan accordingly in advance.

Thursday, March 3
2nd Grade "Yo Leonardo" Music Performance 
6PM in the Cafeteria