Monday, December 21, 2015


December brings many different activities and celebrations, one being the annual performance of the Nutcracker Ballet. Third grade attends this event every year and before going they have the opportunity to hear from a Ballet Austin docent.  This year was no different. Our docent, Sean Henry, explained the background of ballet and the Nutcracker. He shared how dancers dedicate hours of practice and hard work to perform on stage.

Last week we saw Act 1 of the Nutcracker Ballet.  Everyone was beautifully dressed and excited to attend the ballet at the Emma Long Center.  Students were entranced by the music and the elegant dancing.  


Our Oak Hill students displayed wonderful audience manners the whole time. Everyone had a fun time!

We wish all Oak Hill Families a safe and wonderful winter vacation with family and friends.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

December is a busy time of year!

December is a busy time of year! These last two weeks have been a flurry of activity and we also kept learning during the hustle and bustle of holiday activities. We had the Monster Book Fair and what a great time it was! There were so many fun activities and so many shoppers!  We had an awesome family shopping night and the Soaring Eagle Singers put on a wonderful show.  They really got us into the holiday spirit! Clifford made a daily appearance at the school, which the students really enjoyed. Here are a few of my favorite pictures from the book fair:

We also celebrated College week with various college awareness activities throughout the week. Many students and staff wore their college shirts all week and the classes also participated in a college poster contest. There were so many great entries that it was very difficult to choose a winner. Look at all of this super work- and these are just a few.

Soaring Eagle singers went caroling on Friday and performed at Freescale, AMD, and Central Market. It was very cool to see them sing and I know they brightened the holidays for many! One Freescale employee sent me a note that said : "This morning the Soaring Eagles Singers visited Freescale and performed several songs.  I wanted to write to you and tell you that the kids did a fantastic job.  The large crowd was responsive and gave them a lot of applause.  I'd also like to give the music coordinators recognition.  The songs the kids sang were a refreshing twist on the classics." I would agree- the singers are fantastic and the music teachers deserve recognition for their hard work! 

This past week was a bit more low key as we had to complete middle of the year benchmarks in grades 3, 4 and 5. These tests give us valuable data about how we can best help the students be prepared for the years ahead and fill in any holes they have in their knowledge.

Students also viewed a presentation from one of the robotics teams, the Techno Penguins. They created a beeper that you put in your reusable grocery bags to remind you to take them back to your car so that you can reuse them the next time you go to the store. They competed in the robotics competition this Saturday and won best project! Way to go!

Third grade went to the Nutcracker this week. They will be blogging about that soon to give you more information about their experience. I heard they had an amazing time and that they were the best behaved group in the theater!

This coming week will be a flurry of activity as we close out the first semester of school. The teachers have many fun and educational activities planned and of course we have our winter parties. It's going to be a great week!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015


Second grade was very busy in the months of October and November! We had the Austin fire department come out and teach us about fire safety during Fire Safety month. The fireman happened to be Mrs. Bentley's nephew, so we got special treatment. The students got to see the ladder raised up all 30 stories and watched a firefighter climb all the way to the top!


We also had second grade Science Days where the students rotated to all 7 classrooms and learned about balance, force and motion. In each classroom, the students had a hands-on lesson and wrote about what they learned. They made spinners, shot marshmallows, rolled for speed, made zoomers, did a balancing pencil trick and much more. They loved it! Science is definitely a favorite of 2nd graders.

We ended the month by being on KEYE news. Collin Meyers, KEYE meteorologist came to visit and speak to the students about weather. He was an awesome speaker and the kids learned a lot about weather and how to stay safe. We took a selfie with him at the end of the presentation and were on the news that Saturday.

Lots of learning and hands on lessons happening in 2nd grade. The students are fully engaged and loving all the experiences of connecting learning with real life.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

This time of year is always a good time to reflect on the many things that we are thankful for. This year, I can add being a part of this wonderful school to my list. I am extremely thankful to be here each and every day! I enjoy walking through the classes and the hallways and seeing the smiling faces of our students. This school has such a warm feel to it and I know that it is because of the amazing students, faculty, and parents at Oak Hill. I am so thankful for the many volunteers who give of their time to help our school and our students to have fun and to learn. We could not do it without you!

Speaking of volunteers... did you know that we have THREE volunteer Reading programs at OHE that help our primary students sharpen their reading skills? These programs require dedicated volunteers that give their time once, twice or as many as 5 times a week to help our students. One of these programs has been around for 25 years!  Here are some pictures of the Soaring Reading, Reading Rangers and the Young at Heart Reading programs. We are thankful for their time and dedication.




Last week and this short week, contained many exciting events. Fourth and fifth grades attended the UT Women's Basketball game. I'm not sure who had more fun- the students or the parents?


The second grade students had a visit from KEYE meteorologist Collin Meters to kick off their weather unit.

We celebrated the students who participated in the empty bowl project
and the students who were recognized by their teacher for showing Respect, our SEL Word of the Month.

We have a great group of students, parents, and teachers! I am so thankful to be a part of such a caring and involved community.

I wish you all a wonderful and Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope that you enjoy the break and the time with your family and friends.

Friday, November 20, 2015

As the weather gets cooler, or as we refer to it in Texas, ‘less hot’, the leaves begin to turn brown and fall of the trees, and our first graders’ settle into the routines and daily life of first grade, we begin to turn our attentions to the holiday season. With Thanksgiving fast approaching and Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanza celebrations following, our Social Studies TEKS in first grade focus heavily upon holidays and their traditions.

In both my classroom and Ms. Hernandez’s, we have been discussing Thanksgiving and the things in our lives that we are thankful for. This type of open dialogue always brings such positive and heartwarming conversations. My students discussed how they are thankful they have basic needs like food, water, and shelter. Some shared they are thankful they have an older sister or younger brother to play with. One student expressed that she was thankful because she has ‘the best bus driver ever’. After our talks, I thought a great way to visually show how thankful we are was to create a thankful tree. To start, each student was given three leaves. On each, they were able to write something they were thankful for. Following our lesson I began assembling our tree. As I stapled my student’s leaves onto the tree, I read each, and reflected. It was amazing to read each of my student’s personal thanks. They were able to express in just a few words what they are grateful for and what makes them happy in their lives. This activity was not only a great precursor for all of our holiday discussions, but also a rewarding one.  So next time you have a spare moment, I invite you to come by the first grade hallway to view our thankful tree and read some of the things our first grade students, at OHE, are thankful for.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Our World, Our School

Our World, Our School was Friday night and I heard it was a WONDERFUL event. Unfortunately, I did not get to attend because I got strep throat and had to be out on Friday and was not supposed to be around anyone. Horrible timing, but I was able to see the pictures on Facebook and experience it a little bit. The turnout was incredible and the performers looked so entertaining.  It was very nice to see everyone dressed up to represent their culture and I'm sure the food was amazing. A big thank you to our outstanding event chairs who worked so hard to make this event happen and to everyone who helped out or manned a booth during the event. You can check out pictures of the event on Facebook and here are a few good ones as well.



On Tuesday, this coming week, we will have the Reflections Awards at 6pm. Come take a look at all of the amazing artists that we have at OHE!

We do have school on Monday, Nov. 23 and Tuesday, Nov. 24 before the Thanksgiving break. Don't forget that Nov. 24 is our school wide pajama day. I can't believe that it is time for Thanksgiving already! It truly seems like the first day of school was just a week or so ago. Time is flying, but we are learning something new every day and having a great time doing it!

Monday, November 9, 2015

Fall Fun Day

Friday was such a blast! We finally got to have the Fall Fun day and spend some extra time being active and having fun at the same time. Coach Palmer and Coach Shaw worked so hard to organize this for the students. They had a plan for every weather possibility which took a lot of extra time and planning. We thank them for their dedication! We also could not have done it without the almost 75 volunteers that gave their time to help run stations or organize volunteers. Thank you so much! 
As I walked around to the various stations, the thing that impressed me the most was how respectful and cooperative all of the students were playing together. I even got to play a few games with some of them. That was fun! Rather than me just tell you about the fun, here are the pictures to prove it. 





We are looking forward to a great week of learning this week and Our World, Our school on Friday evening. Be sure to come join us- it will be great!