What's happening at Small Middle School
Week of 10/21/19 – 10/25/19
- Letter from Mr. Nelson
- Book Fair
- Unique 8th Grade Field Trip
- Notebooks Needed
- Early Pick-up HOT TIP!
- Small StepBet Challenge
- Smalloween Tickets on sale
- Looking for Spirals
- Girls Basketball Schedule
- Boys Soccer
- GT Nomination
- Donations for SMalloween
- Advanced Theater
- Lasa application Help
- Counselor Talk – Vaping
- Next PTA Meeting
- Duke Tip Program
- Travel to Germany and Switzerland
- Join the PTA
- Austin High: Maroon & White Night
The word is out. Students are keenly aware and have been asking me questions about it all week. They Genie is out of the bottle. Or rather, the Genie is being put back in the bottle. Effective January 8, 2020, we will no longer allow cell phones on campus. That’s right, cell phone usage will no longer be permitted at Small Middle School.
Firstly, we want you to know that we as a staff have no ill will towards cell phones, in fact 100% of us have them and use them daily. We have nothing against the idea of a student having access to a personal computer in their pocket either. What we do want to prevent, and protect our students from, is the effects of social media which unfortunately are synonymous with cell phones at this age. For years we have been relying on BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) as a way to level the playing field in regards to technology in our classrooms, but with that move also came the collateral damage of kids using phones for non-educational purposes and the increase of social media activity at a time when we’d all prefer them to either working or engaging in some good old fashioned face-to-face communication. Now, with the influx of ChromeBooks to our 8th graders, we have the means to get to a true one-to-one ratio in regards to technology.
As adults, we are able to navigate the professional world and personal world somewhat successfully (some of you may be reading this very email at work, even on your own personal device) and manage to separate the two and complete all of our assigned tasks. It’s why we’re called adults. However, at this age and developmental point in their lives, not all kids can do the same. When something is read via DM or as a post on Social Media that is upsetting or unnerving, we’ve most likely lost the kid for the duration of the day. Not all of our kids mind you, but more than enough to encourage our staff to want to make this change.
What will be different next semester? Not much in regards to your student’s day, except the fact cell phones will no longer be allowed in the cafeteria or the gym before the first bell. For this to be effective, it has to be no cell phones at any time on campus. Period. Instead of relying on cell phones as blue-toothed babysitters from 7 a.m until 8:08, we will add more board games to the common areas and open up the courtyard every morning so kids can play ga ga ball, basketball, or simply enjoy nature. Picture it looking more like middle school looked like when you were younger, or just harken back to 2006 B.I. (Before iPhone)
Can they still have them on campus? You bet. Out of sight and out of mind. They can have them for sure, we just don’t want to see them or hear them. We want them to be available for emergencies and the like but will insist they are turned off, silent, and out of view during the day. To help with this, we ask you to assist us with this effort by communicating with your student via the front office (we have 2 wonderful ladies answering phones all the live long day), or by using the school website. Check out our convenient Early Student Pick-up Form here.
How will my student reach me? The same way they did prior to when they first received their cell phone; by using a landline. Every classroom on campus has a phone and the front office has as many as 5 available to students at all times. All that is required is a pass to the office and then your student can call from here. We’ll even look up your phone number for them as I’m certain it’s saved under favorites and not memorized…yet.
We thank you in advance for supporting our efforts to ensure our kids are taken care of while here on campus. This is a move we’ve been discussing for a while and the goal was for next year, but when it comes to doing what’s best for our kids, why wait?
Thank you for reading and please feel free to reach out to me with questions and concerns.
Clint Small Middle School
Follow me on Twitter: @smallprincipal-
Visit our Scholastic Book Fair Oct 28th – Nov 1st
in the library from 7:45 am-4:00 pm!
Shop online Oct 21st – Nov 8th.
Small Library Book Fair Site
Click HERE to volunteer!
8th Grade West Texas Field Trip
5 Days and 4 Nights Camping in Beautiful Davis Mountain State Park
- Caverns of Sonora
- McDonald Observatory
- Big Bend National Park
- The Chianti Foundation
- Enchanted Rock
- Marfa, TX
April 13-17 2020
This is an educational and optional field trip for interested 8th grade students.
We have space for 28 students.
To apply for this trip, students will need to write an essay and pick up a packet from Mr. Poehl. (all necessary information is in the packet)
All essays must be turned in by November 1st
The cost for the trip is $400. Scholarships available for those who qualify
Email Mr. Poehl email@example.com with questions
Small Middle School Assistant Principal
Picking up your student early? Here's a Hot Tip!
As Mr. Nelson mentioned in his letter above.
Did you know that you can complete a request online to have your student meet you in the office when you need to pick them up for an appointment? It’s easy to do, and saves you wait time in the office!
Go to www.smallmiddleschool.org and look for the link for Early Pickup Request on the right side Under the hotlinks.
Complete the form, (same day as pick up is preferred, and at least an hour before you will arrive)
Viola! Your student will meet you in the office and once you sign your student out, you can be on your way.
Thanks in advance,
The Front Office Team
Small Step Bet Challenge
StepBet is a fitness game that motivates you to be more active. Players “bet” on themselves to meet their personalized step goals during every week of the game, and win money if they do. The cash prize, accountability, and community support help you build a more active lifestyle. By using the Health App on your phone, a Fitbit, Apple Watch, or Garmin, you can join all of us at Small Middle School to participate in this challenge. Get active and have fun!
- Game starts Monday, October 21 and ends Sunday, November 24
- You can see what your active day and power day steps will be before you accept the challenge. Your active & power levels are determined by your current activity.
- Accepting the challenge will cost $30, which you can win back if you complete the challenge!
- Invite friends to join our Small Family Challenge! Game code: smallstep
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Parent GT Nominations are Open!
The Advanced Theater Class beginning after school rehearsals this month. Please refer to the schedule below. Email Mrs. Murray with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Both casts: Oct 3rd, 10th, 17th, 22nd 3:45pm-5:00 pm
- After school dress rehearsals for Shake Cast: 28th, 30th 3:45-5:30 pm
- After school dress rehearsals for Speare Cast: 29th, 31st 3:45-5:30 pm
Is your 8th grader applying to LASA? To assist with completing the essays and thinking about teacher recommendations, mentoring help is available to all students (and parents) in Room 204 from 3:45-5:00 pm on Thursday, Nov 7, Thursday Nov21, and Thursday, Dec 5 courtesy of your Campus GT Advocate email@example.com.
Please contact her if you have any questions regarding applying to LASA. Mrs. Manners is a current LASA parent and parent of a 2018 graduate of LASA.
The DukeTIP program offers students with qualifying scores an opportunity to take the SAT. Registration, payment, and transportation to and/or from the test is handled by families. Here is the link if your student has a qualifying score and you would like them to participate in the program. https://tip.duke.edu/programs/7th-grade-talent-search
Either of the two most recent test administrations may be used, and students need only qualify on one subtest. Qualifying scores are:
- 2018 STAAR (English) 5th Grade Scores: Math of 1845 or greater, Reading of 1781 or greater, Science of 4531 or greater
- 2018 STAAR (Spanish) 5th Grade Scores: Math of 1707 or greater, Reading of 1767 or greater, Science of 4161 or greater
- 2019 STAAR (English) 6th Grade Scores: Math of 1881 or greater, Reading of 1783 or greater
If you have any questions, please contact your Campus GT Advocate firstname.lastname@example.org.
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OCTOBER 25th 2019!
Hello Clint Small parents and guardians!
Now that “back-to-school” has come and gone, the next order of business for Theatre & Visual Arts is to start launching effort to make the
2019 Smalloween haunted house and dance a success of Cougar proportions.
Mrs. Murray < email@example.com >or Mr. Tabares < firstname.lastname@example.org > if you have any questions about these roles.
Currently, we are working for light fixtures, blacklight light bulbs and doll heads by the hundred (yes, seriously).
Thank you for your support and Go Cougars!
Below is a Sign-Up Genius link for various roles we would like to have filled by parents and guardians. Please feel free to email
Please stay tuned here for further announcements or calls for various needs.
- Doctor Outfits
- Dr Masks
- Toilet Paper Rolls
- Glow Sticks
- Black Foam Board- 3 sheets
- 2- Black Morph suits
- Fake Chains
- 8-Scrubs outfits
- Adjustable Shower curtain rod
- 3 pair of yellow latex cleaning gloves
Germany and Switzerland
Travel to Germany and Switzerland to learn how they are leaders in Sustainable Living.
This trip is planned for June 2020
To learn more about this international STEM trip opportunity, Join us for an informational meeting on September 24th at 6:00pm – https://rsvp.eftours.com/29eh3kd
If you missed the meeting but want more information, please contact email@example.com
parent meeting regarding this trip.