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Thursday, September 27, 2007

"Tiggerific News!"

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This years Parent Extravaganza was a huge success! We are so proud of the teamwork shown by our faculty/staff in pulling together the magnificant table for this event. Everyone came together once again to demonstrate our great efforts and teamwork while showing everyone how proud we are of our school.
The premiere' of our "TIGGER" was a pleasant surprise! Throughout the week of September 17-23, Henderson celebrated Constitution Week. Mrs.Laros read the Constitution Proclamation to the students over the intercom, and Mr. Goodwin, 5th Grade Social Studies teacher, put together a play with his 5th & 6th grade students.Great job Mr. Goodwin! We are also proud of Ms. Stephens' 2nd Grade students for being so observant. Her students spotted a small fire coming from the power lines outside their classroom. The Fire Evacuation Plan was put into place by Mrs. Laros & staff and all went well. The faculty/students were all calm & did a great job! All the students outside cheered the firemen on as they put the fire out. It could have been a lot worse if it weren't for such observant students. Ms. Stephens & her class was awarded a plaque by the Superintendent.
Great Job 2nd Grade! Hal Henderson has a new program this year in the Computer Lab. The Success Maker program was purchased this summer and has been a huge success so far. This program is designed to enhance reading & math skills in K-6 students and is directly correlated to the SAT 10 curriculum.Great Job Ms. Joiner!

As you can see, GREAT things continue happenning at Hal Henderson! What a GREAT
place to be!!
"Tiggerific Leader!"

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Mastering the Maze

Mastering the Maze is a documents which explains the forms and processes used in special education. While most applicable to special education teachers, it is a valueable tool for anyone who wants to understand the "paper trail" and procedures. The documents comes in several parts and can be found here.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

SACS Standards-Give us your ideas

Part of our process of achieving SACS District Accreditation is to provide evidence of how we meet each of the 7 SACS standards. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to give their input.

On our TalladegaCitySchools blog, there is an introductory post (September 18), followed by a post for each of the 7 standards. On that blog, an open invitation is made for stakeholders to leave a comment related to any of the standards by clicking the "Comment" link at the bottom of each post.

I invite each of you to give us your thoughts as well. You can go directly to a standard by clicking one of the links below:

Standard 1-Vision and Purpose
Standard 2-Governance and Leadership
Standard 3-Teaching and Learning
Standard 4-Documenting and Using Results
Standard 5-Resources and Support Systems
Standard 6-Stakeholder Communication and Relations...
Standard 7-Commitment to Continuous Improvement

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Saturday, September 15, 2007

Congratulations to One of Our Own


Most of you would not normally pick up a copy of "Principal Magazine" but you might want to check out the September/October 2007 Issue. One of our own, Dr. Frank Buck, is a featured author and his topic (you probably guessed it) is entitled, "Managing Technology".

After reading the article, here are some tips I thought teachers might find useful.
  • Technology is here to stay. We must learn how to manage it...or let it manage us.

  • Sometime you can have too much software. His suggestion is Microsoft Office suite.

  • Empty your email inbox daily. How can you do this? Set up folders and drag and drop emails you wish to save to the features offered in Outlook: task list, calendar, or notes.

  • The internet provides a tremendous source for information..a playground for teachers.

  • Just google what you want to know and be amazed what the hits reveal.

  • Technology can be both an interruption and a preventer of interruptions. The power lies in the hands of the user.

  • We must teach our students how to manage the use of technology and model this approach.
Congratulations, Dr. Buck! You represent Talladega City Schools well.

Taking a Lesson from THS Tigers

I don’t know much about football with all of its first downs, penalty flags on the play, fumbles, illegal substitutions, and such…but I do know good teamwork when I see it. The Talladega Tigers came away with an impressive win over Sylacauga Friday night, 41 to 34. If you missed it, don’t worry, it will be talked about for a long time.

Coach Granger, his coaching staff, and players have the right idea when it comes to working together. Everyone played a part in achieving this win. Some of the players experienced leg cramps from the endless runs up and down the field, yet they continued to play. The team was becoming tired with little time to rest for either the defense or offense, but you could see their stamina and determination to bring home a win. Even the players on the sideline motioned to the fans to stand to their feet and cheer the team on.

The Tigers were not alone in this challenge. Their fans were impressive, too. Even with the threat of rain, the visitor side was full. Many of the cheers and chants were started by spectators who were quickly joined by those sitting around them. Along with the cheerleaders, we were supporting our team, our high school, and our children.

One of the stars of the night was Tae Keith, a young man featured this week in the Daily Home. He was quoted as saying that Talladega was going to walk away with a win. Believing and having the right attitude can make things happen. He is a natural leader and shows confidence in himself, his coach, and his fellow players. It would have been easy to become discouraged with the back and forth scoring of touchdowns from both teams. But Talladega’s players had perseverance. We can all take a lesson from the Talladega Tigers.
If you believe it, you can achieve it.

CONGRATULATIONS, THS TIGERS, COACH GRANGER, AND COACHING STAFF!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Henderson Supper Club

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Hal Henderson's September Supper Club was hosted by Stampede Restaurant in Talladega. Everyone had a great time.



We began Supper Club last year and had great success; however, this year our adult attendance is growing which gives more students the opportunity to attend. The faculty/staff's spouses are beginning to join us for dinner; therefore, they too may wish to invite a student. We are very pleased with the number of participants and feel this is one way to involve parents in our school.


We were honored to have our Superintendent, Dr. Horton, join us and enjoy all the fun.

Before the meal, the students were given crayons & something to color to keep them busy while their food was being prepared.
Even the little ones enjoyed the party. Smile Brady! Our principal is so dedicated & always working. We love our monthly "Supper Club" outings, & can't wait until the next one. As you can tell from the look on this sweet student's face - they love it, too!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

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We have added a link to the Lunch Menu! Take a look at the list on the right.

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Sunday, September 09, 2007

Sight Word Reading - Practice with the Computer (without the teacher)

Ever wish you could have students practice sight words and know if what they are saying is correct? NOW YOU CAN!


I found this site http://www.quiz-tree.com/Sight-Words_main.html which has sight words for many levels and with just a click the computer reads each word. You can also print practice sheets as a take home study or to use in the classroom. Check this feature out : http://www.quiz-tree.com/pdf/Sight-Words-Pre-Primer.pdf


If you have a smart board, this could be used as a class group competition. It could also be used as a center activity. I just had to share this wonderful find!

Happy Teaching...

Friday, September 07, 2007

MS. UPTAIN'S FIRST HOME!

Congratulations to Ms.Carrie Uptain, Hal Henderson & Houston Elementary's P.E. Teacher, on the purchase of her first home. Hal Henderson honored Ms Uptain with a house-warming party after school Thursday, Septmeber 6, 2007.



Since Carrie's purchase, she has done alot of work on her new home. The faculty/staff collected appox. $200.00 for Carrie & placed it on a money tree. Carrie also received other gifts from the staff.

The faculty/staff also brought their own favorite dish & everyone ate & had a great time.
We appreciate having Ms.Uptain here at our school. She goes above & beyond to do all that she can do to help out wherever & whenever she can.

Here's Ms.Uptain teaching Kindergarten how to do "Body Bingo"!



We are proud of Ms.Uptain & are so glad she's a part of Hal Henderson's Family.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Follow-up from Rick Shelton workshop



This post is a follow-up to the workshops with Rick Shelton held in August. Listed below are a number of thoughts taken from that workshop, listed in no particular order:
  1. Seeing a model of good (and bad) writing is helpful. I have downloaded the 2004-2005 samples provided by the ALSDE. The direct link is here. Another way to get there would ebe to go to the page of "Downloadable Documents," go to Curriculum, go to Writing, and you will see the folder containing the whole set.
  2. An excellent site for writing resources is that of the Edmon (Oklahoma Public Schools).
  3. Having a mock writing assessment for 4th graders the same day that the 5th graders are taking the real thing is a great opportunity to practice and motivate students for the real assessment.
  4. Having a mock writing assessment for 5th graders a month before the real thing is a great idea.
  5. Use magazines as models of good introductions.
  6. Good writers do not state the subject. They make a statement about the subject.

Time is the enemy (or your best friend, depending on how you use it.):
  1. Kill two birds with one stone. After students read something they would be reading anyway, have them respond to it in writing.
  2. Don't grade everything. Sometimes, let the students choose from several pieces of their writing one for you to grade.
  3. Don't grade all parts of anything. Pick certain elements to look for in one paper, and different elements to grade in the next one.
  4. Students need not write an entire essay every time. Let them write an introductory paragraph and stop. As another idea, divide into groups. One group writes the intro, a second composes the next paragraph, and so forth.
Students need to be responsible to a reader they don't know:
  1. Kids needs an audience. Post their work.
  2. Swap papers with another teacher. Let someone else read your students' writing and you read theirs.
What have I left out? For those who attended the workshops with Rick Shelton, what resonated with you?

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Maintenance requests--a Web 2.0 tool in action

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Practical every magazine we pick up these days that in any way related to technology talks about "Web 2.0." Despite all of the buzz this term has received (beginning around 2003 and gaining steam ever since), few people have the foggiest idea of what it is. If a picture is indeed worth a thousand words, the example of our own list of Maintenance Requests may help make the concept clearer. Many of you have discovered the link on the right-hand side of the screen which will allow you to view everything, the requests completed, those pending, those from your school, as well as those from other schools.

For the last decade, the "web" has been all about you and I being consumers. Content was produced by smart people in far-away places with advanced knowledge of specialized software and access to servers. You and I simply read what they wrote. Web 2.0 has changed all of that. Tools such as "Google Docs" allows average people to be producers. With no knowledge of any special software and without needing access to anyone's server, our principals and maintenance department collectively build and maintain this list. Furthermore, they are not limited by time or geographic location. The list can be updated from anywhere in the world just as easily as it can be edited from from across the street.


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Monday, September 03, 2007

District SACS Accreditation

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Probably all of us have at one time or another have participated in a SACS accreditation. We may have done so as a teacher, parent, student, or combinations of each. All Talladega City Schools are accredited, which should serve as a point of pride for our school system. The fact that we are all accredited opens for us an opportunity which has only existed since 2002. That opportunity is “District SACS Accreditation.” The first three districts (Fulton County, GA; Cobb County, GA; and Volusia County, FL) achieved this goal in 2004. An additional 15 school district accreditation status in 2005, and another 57 earned theirs in 2006.

As of the beginning of lastschool year, only two Alabama school systems had achieved District SACS Accreditation. They are Russell County and Alexander City. A total of 28, however, were at some point in the process. Talladega City Schools was among those 28.

District Accreditation means that rather than each school hosting a SACS review team every five years, the school district hosts a visit every five years. Rather than every school compiling documents, the school district compiles one document. The process is designed to cut paperwork, cut expense, and transform a system of schools into a true school system.

We will host the District SACS Accreditation visit from February 24-27, 2008. The team will spend a great deal of time talking to various groups of people about our vision, our plans, where we are strong, and where we would like to be better. From what they see and hear from us and our written documentation, they will be looking for three things:

  • Do we meet the seven SACS Standards?
  • Do we have a plan for continuous school improvement?
  • Do we, as a school system, have a method of monitoring ourselves to insure that we are following our plan, continually updating that plan, and moving in a direction of quality education for all stakeholders?

As we prepare for our SACS visit, we want and need the input of many people. The first such area is helping identify examples of how we meet each of the seven standards. Each of us will see things and think of things which others miss.

If you click on this link, it will take you to a document showing you the seven standards and their indicators. (If you are asked for a password, simply click "Cancel.") We need your input on what evidence you see that we meet those indicators. As you have input, simply add a comment right on this blog post. The end result will be a narrative in which we have all played a part.

Part of the accreditation process is a plan for continuous improvement. Our school system developed such a plan last year and would have been developing another this year anyway. This same document be the one we present to our visiting committee in February.

You will see posts regularly between now and our visit asking for your input and giving you information as we proceed together on this journey.

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