New School Year

Hello, Mausome GT Parents/Guardians,

I hope this email finds you well and that a memorable summer was had by all! I, jokingly, told the kiddos last year that I would be researching their summer reading by spending some time in the land of the hobbits. Although,  I didn’t see any hobbits, I did see the Misty Mountains (aka The Remarkables) and some other sites.

I always enjoy seeing the kids after summer because they change so much, and they’ll continue to change as this year progresses, personally and academically. I’m so lucky that I get this benefit by being able to be their teacher another year.

What have we been doing? LOADS! Did they tell you about the Marshmallow Challenge? Our motto from that: Think like a Kindergartner – dauntless and creative. We’ve also spent several days reviewing, deepening, and solidifying our understanding of the hero’s journey – from fairy tales to personal stories to fiction. On Friday, we will have a gallery walk of their mindmaps for The Hobbit. I can’t wait to see the finished product of their thinking and their mapping of Bilbo’s journey. The drafts look intriguing.

Tomorrow, they will take their district-required expository CBAP (their first major grade). We’ve been working towards this since the first day, and I hope they see the connection when they see the prompt tomorrow. We will want to do our best and keep in mind that there will be a revision portion next week. 🙂

Finally, I told the kids to bring a coloring book. We are going to use this as a “brain break, get our creative process going” activity. Personally, coloring  is something that I still do as an adult, especially when I have to do any kind of lengthy writing.

Thank you, again, for sharing your kids with me for another year.

End of Middle School Faire

8th graders:

Today, I want to you write a reflective paragraph about your middle school GT experience. Be sure that you have a thesis statement or a main idea. J Be sure to provide details. Think about the tone that you want to convey to your classmates.

Once you’ve done this, think about a dish (from your culture or one that just happens to be your favorite) that compliments what you’ve written.

You could use the dish as your inspiration. We will have our End of Middle School Faire on Friday. J

G/T In the Know

Grade 8 (going into Grade 9)
Summer Reading: There is no assigned summer reading for students going into GT Humanities I, but students still want to know “what to read”. I encourage you to read throughout the summer, focusing on the philosophies and the classics:

  • Anthem
  • Sophie’s World: A Novel About the History of Philosophy

Awards/Celebration: May 29
Field Day: June 1
Field Trips: June 2 (Team Cheetahs) & June 3 (Team Pumas)

Grade 7 (going into Grade 8)
Summer Reading: You will read The Hobbit.
Awards/Celebration: May 28
Field Day: June 1
Field Trip: Thursday, May 22

Barnes and Noble Bookfair for FISD
“Barnes and Noble is going to have a special “bookfair” the weekend of May 22-24 to sell summer reading books to our students.  The FISD libraries will get a portion of the sales from this weekend.  When students present the attached flyer (grade level specific) to the upstairs cashier at B&N, we will get credit for the sale and the student will be entered into a drawing for a free book.  If B&N runs out of a specific title during the designated weekend, they will ship the book to the student’s home free of charge.  It really is a win-win for all of us!”

Order Form (going into Grade 6 GT) – Stargirl
Order Form (going into Grade 7 GT) – Lone Star Reading List 2015
Order Form (going into Grade 8 GT) – The Hobbit
Order Form (going into 9th grade Pre-AP) – Anthem

Independent Study and Mentorship (ISM)
Final Presentation Night
ISM Teachers: Matthew V. Pirtle (Heritage HS); Kara Brittain (Independence HS)
Date: Friday, May 22, 2015
Time: 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Location: Heritage High School (Auditorium)
ISM Program Description
*Centennial/Independence ISM will be a part of HHS’s Final Night

Evening’s Schedule (Approximate):
6:30 – 7:00 Come and Go Student Showcase (cafeteria at most campuses)
7:10 – 7:45 Mentor Acknowledgment (Auditorium)
8:00 – 8:30 Individual Student Presentations (Classrooms)

* If you’re unable to attend our feeder high school’s ISM night, you may attend another high school’s event:
Frisco – May 19
Wakeland – May 20
Lone Star – May 20

**Extra Credit Opportunity: If you attend an ISM presentation, write about the one presentation that you found to be the most interesting and why. Be sure to include the student’s name and his/her topic. Your write-up should also reflect information that you gathered from having had a conversation with the student about his/her topic.

Happy International Women’s Day 2015

Hi, kiddoes!

I hope you’ve all enjoyed the first weekend of your long-awaited Spring Break. Let’s hope we have some good weather to enjoy our week!

In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the four TED-Ed videos to celebrate International Women’s Day!

Learning never stops.

Ms. C

Writing Revisited

Here are some items to help you with your revising and editing:


Editing Checklist

Creating Clear and Concise Sentences

General Outline


General Reminders:
Do not announce you are about to write about the topic in your essay.
Avoid the use of second and third person.
Avoid the use of contractions.
Review the video on blending quotations.