Sunday, April 21, 2013

We're Still Rockin' the CRCT!

Quote of the Week: "Progress comes from the intelligent use of experience." 
                                       - Elbert Hubbard

Three down; two to go. We are going to continue to Rock the CRCT!!

Last week went very smoothly. We have two more tests this week: Science and Social Studies. These tests are just as important for students as the Reading, ELA, and Math tests are.  For a CRCT schedule, click hereRemember, students who are prepared, calm, and rested perform better on tests. Here are some tips from the GADOE to help your child approach the CRCT in a relaxed, positive way:

  • Encourage your child to employ good study and test-taking skills. These skills include following directions carefully, avoiding careless errors, and reviewing the work. Consider writing an encouraging note to your child to build their confidence.
  • Explain the purpose of the test. The CRCT gives students an opportunity to show what they have learned in school. It also gives teachers information that helps them plan instruction.
  • Let your child know that you consider the test important and that the child should try his or her best. All sections of the CRCT are important, not just reading and math.
  • Point out that some items may be more difficult than others and that some material may be new to the child. 
  • Reassure your child that there will be ample time to take the tests and that it is okay if he or she does not know all of the answers. Encourage your child not to worry and to take their time. Students should spend at least 45 of the allotted 70 minutes  on each section of the test.
  • Be sure that your child gets plenty of sleep and has a good, nourishing breakfast and lunch.
  • Test taking is hard work for many students and can require a lot of energy. Be sure your child is at school on time. Rushing and worrying about being late could affect performance on the test.
  • Remember to ask your child about the testing at the end of each day.

Here is the CRCT Schedule for Hilsman:

Language Arts-4/17
Social Studies-4/24

School Improvement Survey

Parents, please remember to take the school improvement parent survey located at this link.  The survey has been shortened to 25 questions this year and should take just a few minutes to complete.  You may complete it now or when you come in for your child's conference. It is very important for us to have your input, as we use this information in our school improvement planning process each year. Our goal is to have 100% of our parents take the survey. Thank you in advance.

Greenfest Awards 

On Friday, Hilsman was recognized in several categories at the Greenfest Awards ceremony. First, Catherine Wang's artwork was recognized and on display for all to see. Second, Hilsman received the Waste Reduction Award from Athens-Clarke County. Finally, Hilsman received five of the ten Eugene Odum Environmental grants that were awarded.  Thanks to Audrey Hughes and the Science and Energy Team for spearheading our recycling efforts this year!

Members of SET with sponsor Audrey Hughes receive
the Waste Reduction Award

8th Grade Camp Hilsman

Parents, next week our 8th grade teachers will begin Camp Hilsman, a transition camp aimed at ensuring our students are prepared for 9th grade. Teachers will be reviewing 8th grade standards, as well as previewing 9th grade material. some of the learning activities will occur in small group settings, while others will be whole class. Encourage your student to be engaged in the activities, ask questions, and make sure that they are prepared and ready to be successful in 9th grade in the fall.

Progress Reports

Parents, progress reports go home Tuesday, April 23rd. Please make sure that you ask your student to see theirs. We have four weeks left of school, and we want everyone to do well! If you have questions, please email or call your child's teacher.

New Promotion/Retention Policy

The new promotion retention policy which was passed in November can be found here. The most important item to note is that we will not be having summer school this summer. Therefore, students who are in danger of failing two or more classes (including connections and ELT) will need to attend Saturday School April 27th, May 4th, and May 11th. Administrators and counselors are meeting individually with students who, based on their the class average for the first three quarters, are in danger of failing for the year in at least two classes. We are making a plan with these students and are sending a letter and a copy of the plan home by mail. We want your child to succeed and are working with them to ensure they have every opportunity for success! If you want to learn more or have questions, please comment on this blog or email me at 

Subscribe to Panther Pointers!

Did you know that you can receive the Panther Pointers automatically each week by subscribing to the blog?  All you need to do is enter your email in the "Follow by email" field at the top right corner of the blog page.  You will receive a confirmation email, and once you have confirmed, you are set! Any time the blog is updated (which is about once per week) you will receive it in an email. Our goal is to have all our families subscribed.  This is your one stop information spot for all things related to Hilsman!

Follow us on Twitter!

Hilsman Middle now has a Twitter account.  This is one more way you can stay connected to Hilsman, keep up to date on all Hilsman news, and receive links to information related to your child's education.  Follow us on twitter @HilsmanPanthers.


Remember to ask your child to see their Panther card and sign it.  Students who bring back a signature can be entered into our weekly drawing!

PTO News

The final PTO meeting of the year will be Monday, April 22nd at 6 p.m. Please meet in the media center. We look forward to seeing you there!

PTO Fundraising opportunities!
Please mark you calendars for some upcoming events to help raise funds for our PTO.

April 26th
Walk-a-Thon @ Hilsman during morning connections time.
Information was sent home this week with your child. Students are currently getting pledges to walk laps to support Hilsman PTO in providing classroom grants, enrichment activities, and incentives for students.

May 2
Hilsman Skate Night @ Fun Galaxy
5pm - 8pm

Yearbook - Order yours now!

The Hilsman yearbook is on sale now.  Order your student's yearbook for only $23.


Our announcements are now a daily Google Presentation, which can be viewed by clicking here.   You can view our weekly news video here. There is another special CRCT message this week!

Upcoming Events - Mark Your Calendars!

April 16-25                   CRCT
April 22                         PTO @ 6 p.m. in the Hilsman Media Center
April 23rd                     Progress reports go home
April 29th                     No Place for Hate Assembly @ 8:30 a.m.
April 29th                     Rising 6th grade parent meeting 
May 6th                        School Council Meeting @ 4:00 p.m. (Parent Center)
May 16th                      6th and 7th grade Honors Assemblies
May 17th                      8th grade Honors and Moving On Ceremony @ 9:00 a.m.

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