Sunday, December 15, 2013

Get Ready. Winter (Break) is Coming...

Quote of the Week: "Remember happiness doesn't depend upon who you are or what you have; it depends solely on what you think." -Dale Carnegie

The Week in Review

There are cool things happening at Hilsman this week! Many students worked on finishing up their science fair projects. The Hilsman science fair will be held next Tuesday, December 17th. If you would like to view the science projects, they will be set up in our cafeteria. Parents and community members may visit the Science Fair Monday 12/16, from 2-4 PM, and Tuesday 12/17, from 11-2 PM. Here are a few photos of students working hard:

Additionally, several Hilsman students  participated in an Hour of Code in the media center and in their classrooms! ( Several students designed their own animated holiday cards using Scratch ( One student designed his own computer game and others learned processing ( Everyone should try out the free online tutorials for themselves! (

Benchmarks: December 10-17

Our Quarter Two benchmark assessments began this week and run through mid-next week. The schedule is below:

Monday, December 16th: Make ups
Tuesday, December 17th: Math
Wednesday, December 18th: Make ups
Thursday, December 19th: Make ups

Student Incentives

Over 200 students earned "uniform free day" incentives for performance in Quarter One. Today, we recognized these students and gave them wristbands good for Uniform Free Days during this last week of school before the break. The wristbands are color coded as follows:

Monday - Perfect Attendance: Orange
Tuesday - A/B Honor Roll: Yellow
Wednesday - A Honor Roll: Green
Thursday: Pride of the Panther: Festive

If your student did not receive their wristband today, or their name wasn't called and they believe they earned one, please have them email Dr. Blankenship or see Mrs. Brinkley on Monday morning. We are human and sometimes make a mistake, so if that happens we will make the correction!

December- Acts of Kindness Month

Throughout this month, we encourage the Hilsman community to commit intentional acts of kindness toward others. Sites like Random Acts of Kindness and Kindspring have lists of ideas to help you get started. You might even want to take the 21 Day Gratitude Challenge from  At Hilsman, each classroom will have a Grinch, and the goal will be to fill the Grinch with hearts that have our acts of kindness written on them. Please join us in helping to make our community a kinder place during the month of December.

Pax Panther is Coming to Hilsman!

The Hilsman administration and athletic program have had as a goal over the past several years to start a tradition of having a costumed mascot to attend sporting and other Hilsman events. At the same time, the Hilsman community has been searching for a way to remember our beloved Coach Paxson, who passed away two years ago November 4th. I am happy to announce that the PTO has graciously offered to help us raise the funds to purchase a top quality panther mascot costume! Additionally, we have decided to name our mascot Pax, to honor Coach Paxson's memory. Coach Paxson was a true Panther, and an avid sports fan. Not only is Pax a part of Coach Paxson's name, but also it is an international name that means "peace." As an IB candidate school, this name fits our mascot perfectly, and as a Hilsman family, we are honored that Coach Paxson's family has given their blessing to our naming Hilsman's mascot as a tribute to him. I hope you will join us in welcoming Pax Panther to Hilsman when he makes his debut, hopefully sometime early next year.

Update: The PTO will be selling wristbands that say "I support Pax Panther" when we return to school in January. The faster the wristbands are sold, the sooner Pax can take up residence at Hilsman!


Basketball season is here!  Our next game is Wednesday at home against Gainesville. Game time is 4:30 for girls, with the boys game immediately following.


Our announcements are now a daily Google Presentation, which can be viewed by clicking here. In these announcements there is information regarding sports tryouts, club meetings, etc. Our weekly news show can be viewed by clicking here.

Not Seeing Enough News?

If you have Hilsman related news to share, please send it to me for inclusion in the blog.

Upcoming Events - Mark Your Calendars!

December 10-17                 Quarter 2 Benchmark Assessments
December  17                      Hilsman Science Fair
December 16-19                 Incentives for students Making Honor Roll, Perfect 
                                                Attendance, or Pride of the Panther
December 18                       Basketball vs. Gainesville
December 19                       Quarter 2 Ends/ Hilsman Your Pie % Night
December 20-January 5   Winter Break

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