Day One…state assessment…done!  As we continue staarthis week, we encourage you to rest, eat well, and do those calming techniques that allow you to focus, concentrate, and do your personal best no matter what!  Thanks to all our learners (testers and non-testers), all our LME staff members, and especially Mrs. Bass, our campus testing coordinator, for giving your personal BEST everyday!  Day Two is next…  🙂

STAAR light; STAAR bright; STAAR Parent Night!

Have you wondered…staar

  • What STAAR tests will my child take this year?
  • What is the correlation between the STAAR Test and the State Curriculum (TEKS)?
  • When will I see scores?
  • What is SSI and which students are involved?
  • What can I do to help my child be prepared for testing days?

These are ALL great questions and we’d love to have the opportunity to share the answers with you in person!  Please join the MISD Elementary School administrators for a Parent Informational Meeting about STAAR on Tuesday, January 27th at 6:30 p.m. at the MISD Boardroom at LA Mills Administration Building for this informational meeting.  Bring your questions and your smiles. We hope to see you there!

Karena Blackwell, Longbranch Elementary Principal

Kyle Chambers, JA Vitovsky Elementary Principal

Shannon Thompson, JR Irvin Elementary Principal

Beth Van Amburgh, Larue Miller Elementary Principal

Karen Childers, Mt. Peak Elementary Principal

Courtney Carpenter, TE Baxter Elementary Principal

 

To our STAAR gazers…shine on!

State assessment…another week started…today is done!  As we continue this staarnext assessment week, we encourage our learners to rest, eat well, and do those calming techniques that allow them to focus, concentrate, and do their personal best no matter what.  Thanks to all our learners (testers and non-testers), all our LME staff members, and especially Mrs. Bass, our campus testing coordinator, for giving your personal BEST everyday!  Special thanks to our parents and learning community for your patience, smiles, and hugs this week!  Everyday is game day at LME and testing days are certainly no exception.  Shine on, STAAR gazers!  🙂

Shine on, STAAR gazers!

State assessment…another week started…today is done!  As we continue this staarnext assessment week, we encourage our learners to rest, eat well, and do those calming techniques that allow them to focus, concentrate, and do their personal best no matter what.  Thanks to all our learners (testers and non-testers), all our LME staff members, and especially Mrs. Bass, our campus testing coordinator, for giving your personal BEST everyday!  Everyday is game day at LME and testing days are certainly no exception.  Shine on, STAAR gazers!  🙂

STAAR light; STAAR bright…

staar Day One…state assessment…done!  As we continue this week, we encourage you to rest, eat well, and do those calming techniques that allow you to focus, concentrate, and do your personal best no matter what!  Thanks to all our learners (testers and non-testers), all our LME staff members, and especially Mrs. Bass, our campus testing coordinator, for giving your personal BEST everyday!  Day Two is next…  🙂

Keep Calm…

1939 was a dark and difficult year in Europe.  Hitler and the Nazi army had annexed Austria and Czechoslovakia as well as started the Blitzkrieg attack on Poland.  France and Great Britain declared war on Germany and World War II began.  The British government created a motivational poster at that same time:  Keep Calm and Carry On.  Long forgotten, a copy of the original poster surfaced in a used bookstore in England in 2000.  Since then, the poster has become a popular, even iconic, message of resilience in the face of challenging situations.  Its simple, reassuring, and inspiring reminder remains an encouraging sentiment in difficult times.  You didn’t know you were getting a brief history lesson today, huh?!

So, what does this have to do with us at LME anyway?  I was reminded this morning during walkabout how important this is for our learners and their classroom leaders this week!  With STAAR-gazing upon us now, we need these simple, profound reminders that doing our personal best is enough.  It’s natural to feel anxious and uncertain, but we’re not alone.  We just need to filter our thoughts into positive messages and pull from our anxiety management tool kits so we change how we feel and behave during stressful times (like state assessment).  Children are far more resilient than adults, thus, I continuously encourage our staff to measure the barometer by the students.IMG_2596

One 1st grade class shared this clever poster with their 4th grade buddies during their time together.  One learner commented about “keeping your wits about you, especially during your test.”  🙂

I want to thank our classroom leaders, volunteers, tutors, and learners for preparing themselves to their personal best everyday.  Thanks to our learning community who consistently give support to our campus in so many ways!  It’s important to remember this week especially to Keep Calm and Test On!

A STAAR is now born…

From TABS to TEAMS to TAAS to TAKS, a new STAAR is born in the state of Texas.  The State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness (STAAR) is the newest testing program from a history of evolving programs in the state educational system.  Here’s a little Texas testing trivia to test you:

  • When TABS started in 1980, it was the state’s first mandated test administered to students in third, fifth, and ninth grades in reading, math, and writing.
  • In 1986, TEAMS tested reading, math, and writing in first, third, fifth, seventh, ninth, and eleventh grades; it was also the first test students were required to pass in order to earn a diploma.
  • In use from 1990 to 2002, TAAS tested reading, math, and writing, ultimately to students in third through eighth grades and tenth grade with science and social studies added.  Spanish-language tests were made available for the first time and four end-of-course (EOC) exams provided another option for meeting graduation requirements.
  • By 2003, the TAKS was presented to assess math, reading, writing, language arts, science and social studies.  Students in grades 3 – 11 were tested and promotion requirements (Student Success Initiative—or SSI) were added while graduation requirements were expanded to include all core subject areas. (Source:  TEA)

So why care about this?  It’s been a while since a new test was rolled out in Texas.  STAAR comes with much ambiguity.  Please know this:  our teachers are leaders in Midlothian ISD and continue to be on their quest for answers by attending conferences and sessions specific to their content areas, then tying this knowledge to the one item we do know well—the TEKS (state curriculum).  They are increasing the rigor in our classrooms and our learners (and their families) are feeling these growing pains!  They are sharing their new knowledge with your learner and with you.  (I especially appreciate our fifth grade team of leaders who stepped out tonight to share specific examples with the fifth grade parents who attended our meeting—thanks for rigorously coming out tonight!).

Yes, there is always uncertainty surrounding the launch of something new.  As I tell us during morning message though:  Plan your work; work your plan; autograph your work with personal excellence.  We know your learner will shine to his or her personal best as a new STAAR is born in Texas!

Note:  Testing Weeks are March 26 – 30 and April 23 – 27.  Because of testing security and schedules, please remember we are a closed campus to visitors and volunteers during these times.  These are the only times we do not welcome you to join us during the instructional day.  We appreciate your cooperation and understanding.