Friday, April 24, 2015

As most of you are aware, I typically blog late Friday after school.  (Which is my excuse for so many mistakes :).  But since this will be my last blog for OHE, I decided to not wait until the last minute.

To reflect on my time at OHE, I reminisced by looking through the old blog posts.  I actually read my first post and am pretty impressed that I was able to keep up with this type of communication.  Looking back now, I realize it has become a scrapbook of sorts for everything that has happened over the last five years.  What a great way to remember all we have done.    It is really hard to decide what my "favorites" are but here are a few:

Bets with students

Ice Cream Social

Pajama Day


Student Council Service Projects

Our World, Our School

Ballet Folkloricio and our Dual Language Program

As I reviewed the pictures from the blog posts, it was fun to see faces of students I hadn't seen since my first year as well as faces that have been here the five years.  There is a big difference between kindergartners and how they look now in 4th grade.

It was also fun seeing the family participation here at OHE.  Some of the same families that helped me that first summer with painting, communication, and reorganization are still involved today!  That definitely shows how it takes a community to run a school.  Remember that as the new principal transitions into OHE.  OHE is an amazing school not because of one person, but because of the school community at large.  When I came on board 5 years ago, I didn't know anything about this community or things like a carnival, Dual Language, Our World, Our School, parent involvement, etc.  But together, I quickly learned.  Now many of these things are part of the tradition at OHE.  With your continued support, they will stay part of the school's traditions.

My first post stated that I was looking forward to being part of the OHE family. Now that I've been part of this OHE family, it is hard to say good-bye.  I already know things I will miss.  But the thing I will miss the most, are your kids!  I have thoroughly enjoyed being their principal and watching them grow.  For some students the connections I have made came during our daily morning time together in the cafeteria prior to school.  For others, it was running with them during track club.  For others, it happened during my visits to the classrooms.  Yet for others, it was on the bus line at the end of the day.  Whichever method was used to build connections with students, I will miss them.

I want to thank each of you for the support you have given me over the past five years.  The positive experience I have had here wouldn't have been possible with that.  I appreciate all that you have done and will continue to do for OHE. For those that weren't able to come to assembly this morning, here is the video.

OHE will always hold a special place in my heart.

Friday, April 17, 2015


Even though Dr. Mitchell is not available to write the blog this week, ever in the spirit of Oak Hill, I am filling in to share some of the fun activities going on around campus. On Thursday, second grade treated us to a delightful fairy tale performance called "Once Upon a Shortcut." I was so impressed by their acting, singing, and costumes! It was definitely one of the best I have seen in the many years I have been at Oak Hill. Thanks to both Ms. Tobias and Ms. Brown as well as all of the second grade teachers for their hard work. Third grade also went to the Wildflower Center this week. As a former third grade teacher, I know how much learning and fun the students had as well as the hard work put  into this field trip. Thank you to all third grade teachers as well as a special thanks to Mrs. Lagerquist for leading the learning. Not to be outdone, last year's and this year's Student Councils have purchased a set of large bongo drums and a large chime set to put on the playground. What a unique addition! Thank you to our student council members and Ms. Ahumada for their efforts.

Finally, hope we see lots of you tomorrow at our annual Pancake Breakfast at Applebee's from 8:00 - 10:00. Speaking of breakfast, make sure your children get a good breakfast starting on Monday for the STAAR test.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Ms. Underwood enjoyed her time with auction winner Ridley (and friends Ian and Campbell) while having dinner while watching HOME at Alamo Drafthouse. It is a great movie about not giving up and the importance of family and friends! They all gave it a big thumbs up!

The Hip Hop class performed during assembly and even put in some of their own moves!

Dress like an athlete day was a huge success.

Here are a couple of reminders.  Please follow the traffic patterns when driving on campus.  OHE is unable to provide continuous traffic control in the morning so please be mindful that young students are entering the school.

Also our annual Applebee's pancake breakfast in April 18th.  Purchase your tickets now.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Our first round of STAAR testing is complete!  The 4th and 5th graders did a great job.  Also this week began TELPAS, which is an assessment that evaluates the English acquisition for all our second language learners.  We can now breathe for a couple of weeks until round 2, which is the week of April 20th.  

While the "big" kids were testing, the kindergartens took a field trip to the Crowe's Nest.  

As always, they enjoyed feeding the animals.  
 With the help of lots of volunteers, the kindergarten garden is back up and in use.  Maybe I could have the come and help me with my garden?

 With specific thanks to Mrs. Thorton and Mrs. Lagerquist, our front area has another new garden.

Third graders visited the Wild Flower Center.

These students' projects were displayed at the new performing arts center, PAC.

Have you ever come to a "Friday" assembly early?  If you get a change, do.  Often an activity called GoNoodle is on and the student love moving to it.  This activity was called "Run Like a Kitty".  The students loved it! 

During assembly this morning, kindergarten students made a "Love Train".

The district has created a collage of videos from all the high schools.  The theme was “A day in the life of…”  I had the pleasure of viewing the video at the new PAC a couple of weeks ago.  It was amazing to see the talent of so many students as well as share in their stories.  I encourage you to watch the movie.  It can be found on the front page of the district website at

Please remember this is a three day weekend.  See everyone back here on Monday.  

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Principal of the Day

This principal of the day biz is tougher than I thought! First, we had to walk through the classrooms and check stuff off. Then, we had to check a million emails. Next, me and Ms.Anna saw what the Kindergardeners were up to. At 10:00 we checked more emails. 10:30, I went outside and had snack. 11:04, we had to calm down a four-year-old student from a fit that he had. 12:00, I had lunch and talked with friends. 12:30, I was on lunch duty. 12:55, I went to P.E. class. And finally, as I was writing this blog, I met the Associate Superintendent of AISD. It was a great day of learning how to be a principal.   -Ridley Ott