HUNTERS CREEK ELEMENTARY
COUGAR EXPRESS 

News from the Principal and the PTA
 
December 2,  2016
                        VISIT OUR SCHOOL WEBSITE            VISIT OUR PTA WEBSITE 
CLICK HERE for our full calendar of events  

Dec 5 9:30-10:30
Parent Education Series: understanding  The 5 Love Languages of Children by Chapman and Campbell.  

Mrs. Chvatal will give an overview of this enlightening book about how to effectively love your children in their own language.  
Dec 7
TOYS for TOTS
Dec 8 8:30 HCE Spelling Bee in the Cafe
Dec 8 6:00 pm
4th Grade Holiday Concert in the Cafe --- NEW EVENT
Dec 9
FUN RUN with Woodview Elementary - see article below for details
Dec 9 4:30 pm Fiddlers Holiday Concert @ Memorial Drive Elem
Dec 13
First Grade White Out Day
Dec 14
PTA Planning Proposals due to Ms. Snyder
Dec 15  9:30 
10:30
3rd grade author visit - Bruce Colville
4th grade author visit - Bruce Colville
Dec 16
NOON DISMISSAL
Holiday Parties - Schedule coming soon
Report Cards Go Home
Jan 3
Staff Development Day
Jan 4
Students return to school 
ANNOUNCEMENT ABOUT A FACULTY MEMBER

We have news to share from 2nd grade. Please read the letter below that Ms. Coan sent to her parents last Tuesday before the holidays...

Hello All,
 
As you will hear from your students after school, I announced to the children today that my last day at Hunters Creek will be at the end of this semester on Friday, December 16. My fiancĂ© and I will be moving to Malabo, Equatorial Guinea (a small island off the coast of West Africa) early next year for a great job opportunity with his company. It was a very difficult decision for us, as I have truly enjoyed the opportunity to work with both you and your children in this wonderful community.
 
My team and the administrative team at HCE have been hard at work to find a great replacement. We have been lucky to be able to flex our innovative muscles and propose an innovative plan to the district.  At this time of year the student teachers are graduating and ready to teach. We have been lucky to grab 2 of the cream of the crop.  Miss Payton Kerr will start in January as the teacher of record and, in February, Miss Bethany Templeton will join the team. We will have 2 teachers working together to teach this class.  They will be supported by the second grade team, our literacy and math specialists with academics and by Mrs. Chvatal, our counselor, to help students through the transition to new teachers.   
 
I want to thank everyone for their support during this transition. I will truly miss the Hunters Creek family, especially my students, but know that you are in amazing hands! If you have any questions, please feel free to email me or setup a time to discuss further.
 
Sincerely,
 
Michelle Coan
2nd Grade Teacher
Hunters Creek Elementary


Second Grade Parents and Students are invited to a 
come-and-go Meet and Greet 

Monday, Dec 12, 5:30-6:30pm in the Library 
to meet Miss Templeton and Miss Kerr

WELCOME FROM Miss Kerr
Hi! My name is Payton Kerr and I am elated to join Hunters Creek Elementary School as a 2 nd grade teacher! Growing up in a family of educators, being an elementary school teacher has always been my dream. Having this dream come to life at Hunters Creek brings me great joy and excitement!

I am a recent graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Applied Learning and Development, holding teaching certifications in Early Childhood through Grade 6 and ESL. I believe that my experience at UT has not only prepared me to take on this essential profession, but has also developed me as a more passionate, reflective, and confident teacher and learner.

Born and raised in Dallas, TX, I am the oldest of 3 children! Although Dallas was my home, I have quickly grown to love Houston! I am anxious to explore all of the great things the city has to offer! When not in the classroom, I enjoy spending time at the lake or the ranch, with my friends and family. I am also a dog lover and I look forward to getting my own puppy very soon!

I believe that all children offer unique talents, gifts and challenges. It is my charge as an educator to develop these talents and gifts and prepare our children for lives of intellectual discovery, integrity, and purpose. I believe in providing safe learning environments that support risk-taking, discovery, and the opportunity to study topics that are meaningful and relevant to a child's life and interests.  Learning should be fun. Structure and discipline are important and having a balance of challenge and joy is key to success.

I am very grateful for the opportunity to fulfill my lifelong dream and passion at such an
amazing school with such  fantastic people! It brings me great joy to be a part of the HCE
community and I look forward to meeting my students and their families, and beginning our journey of learning together in January! We have an amazing adventure ahead of us! 

WELCOME FROM Miss Templeton
Hi there! I'm Bethany Seavers Templeton (I'll go by Ms. Templeton or Ms. "T" in the classroom). I'm so excited to become a part of the wonderful second grade team at Hunters Creek. 

I graduated from Luther College in Duluth, IA., where I earned a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education with endorsements in reading and early childhood education (PK-2). I am also pursuing certification in ESL. 

Since I was in second grade, I have known that teaching is what I wanted to do. Working with children has always been my passion, and I love watching children think about new concepts, ask questions, work through it until they finally have their 'light bulb' moment. It has always been energizing to me. 

I was raised in the Midwest, and moved down to Houston after graduation. The majority of my family is here. The cold and ice up there pushed me to seek warmer weather. Right now, I'm sure thankful to not have to bundle up just to check the mail! My significant other joined me in Houston and we live with our kitten named Dionysus. 

When I'm not at school, I enjoy spending time with family and friends. I'm also a competitive ballroom dancer, so I practice and compete whenever I can! I am so excited to meet all of my students and parents at HCE this year! I know we will have a fantastic second half to the year. 
HOLIDAY ANGELS AT HCE

HCE Families and Staff,  the holiday season is right around the corner.  We would 
again like to offer HCE families the opportunity to anonymously adopt another HCE family who might need assistance at this time through our  Holiday Angel   program.  

This process is completely anonymous - neither the giver or the receiver will know 
each other.
 
If you are interested in having your family anonymously adopted for the holidays, 
please use the form found in your child's Tuesday folder, or click HERE to download a form. You may also obtain forms at our Front Office.  

Return the form to our Counselor, Andrea Chvatal, no later than Wednesday, 
December 7 th .
                                                                                                                                             
If you would like to adopt an HCE family for the holidays, please email Andrea Chvatal at andrea.chvatal@springbranchisd.com for more information.

3rd GRADE TRIP TO GALVESTON

Today our 3rd graders traveled to Galveston on charter buses (thanks to PTA!) to perform several square dances for the Texas Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance's annual conference.  

                        
                        CLICK THE PICTURE FOR MORE INFO ABOUT THE CONFERENCE

Following their fabulous performance, under the direction of Coach Thompson, they explored the Aquarium at Moody Gardens and were treated an IMAX movie, also thanks to PTA! 
 
FUN RUN for HCE and WVE

Friday, Dec. 9th, 2016 at Woodview Elementary

Helping Woodview Elementary raise money for a new SPARK Park
Please support our Sister School




HCE 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students ride school buses to WVE.
The HCE K - 2nd graders will have their Fun Run at HCE at their regular specials times.  
Fun Run Schedule
Pick up HCE-8:05
5th- 8:20-8:55 (WVE & HCE)

Pick up HCE-9:05
4th 9:15-9:55 (WVE & HCE)

Pick up HCE-10:10
3rd 10:20-11:05 (WVE & HCE)
 
Here are some ways for students to raise $1 or more to contribute: 
  • Ask parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, family friends, etc. to sponsor you in the FUN RUN by donating a dollar or two. (we will not count laps)
  • Earn money by doing extra chores - walk the dog, wash the car, bathe the dog, sweep the sidewalks, take out the recycling, pair socks, pull weeds, rake leaves, etc.
  • Open your own piggy bank or wallet and contribute a dollar, two or even five.
Please send contributions in an  envelope marked "Fun Run" , with cash or checks made payable to SBEF (Spring Branch Education Foundation)
with "HCE/WVE" in the memo line.

THANK YOU to Hunters Creek Elementary for helping Woodview Elementary work their way to a SPARK Park for the school as it is one of the only places for them to play! All the students and staff are appreciative to everyone for their donations.
Counselor's Corner
By Andrea Chvatal

Do your children feel entitled to the latest and greatest (fill in the blank)?  Do they balk at chores or giving of their time or energy to others?  I know I complained about a lot of things when I was growing up.  I did lots of chores and our family was always on a tight budget.  As an adult, I look back and am grateful for the work ethic and delayed gratification I learned through those times. Gratitude is taught over many, many years and experiences.  And guess what... You are the main teacher.  No pressure there!   Research shows people who consider themselves grateful are among the happiest.  December is a great month to give time, energy and resources to others.  Create opportunities for your children to participate in whatever it is you are doing to that end.  I found a great blog of seven things we, as parents, can incorporate in order to help our children understand and show gratitude.  Read more  here

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HCE Leadership Council will facilitate our continued participation in the annual  Toys for Tots  collection.  Our local firefighters will be here to collect toys on 
Wednesday, December 7th  from 8:30 - 10:00 a.m.  

Santa will be here too!  Each student will have an opportunity to bring their unwrapped gift to the hardtop for collection and say hello to Santa along the way.  If you can participate, we ask that you send your child to school with a toy for his/her age group  on that day.
 
For example: Kindergarteners are asked to donate a toy for a boy or girl who is 5 or 6 years old.  Please remember to include batteries if the toy needs them.  Please do not donate realistic looking weapons or gifts with food.

This is a wonderful opportunity to talk with your child about giving to others.  Thank you, in advance, for your generosity.
 
SCHOOL STORE  

We are opening to 3rd, 4th and 5th graders!   So, 3rd graders can also come now. 

Everything in the store will sell for $1, some things are 2 or 3 for a $1. 

Available: pencils, pencil sharpeners, fun erasers, backpack ornaments, pencil grips, and supply zipper bags. 

Here are the school store dates: 
Dec 6 and 13, Jan 17 and 31, Feb 21

If you have suggestions for things you'd like the 4th and 5th grade students to be able to purchase, email robalyn.snyder@springbranchisd.com.
PTA President's Perspective
 
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and enjoyed the break!  My kids sure did! 
 
We had a great turnout at the PTA General meeting on Nov. 17 th and we learned a lot about the Recapture from SBISD board member Chris Gonzales.  Thank you so much to those who attended! 
 
On the Friday before Thanksgiving, the 5 th graders enjoyed a hotdog lunch following their DARE graduation ceremony. Officer Miller has been on-campus this school year teaching the students good decision-making skills to help them lead safe and healthy lives, and Dawn Wilson organized the culminating celebration.  Thank you, Dawn!  
 
Can you believe it...we only have a few weeks left before the Holiday Break! 
 
Have a good weekend! 
 
 
Katrina Stephenson
HCE PTA President
Artwork Winner: Hannah Le

The best place to Bee will be HCE this next week!

School Spelling Bee will be held Thursday, December 8th at 8:30am in the cafeteria. Come out to watch and support our students as they compete for a chance to move on to the district bees.
 
For the participants, we will be offering one more morning practice session Tuesday, December 6th in the discovery room. 

Questions and further information please send to 
Jenny Robertson -  robertsondds@yahoo.com
Denise Campbell -  Ddcampbell45@aol.com
Meg Bissinger - Megbissinger@gmail.com 
Nesi Andrews -  Nesimarie_65@yahoo.com
 

Great way to help Hunters Creek Elementary with your Christmas Shopping                                                
Amazon Smile-  Direct link that will contribute to HCE school is:

Visit www.smile.amazon.com (same account as www.amazon.com ) and select   
HCE as charitable organization; this will donate 0.5% of your purchase!  

On your first visit, you select a charitable organization to receive donation before  
you begin shopping go to: "or pick your charitable organization" and type   
Hunters Creek Elementary and select Houston, Texas. It will come as PTA  
Texas congress 4932, or you can also look for the school with EIN number:  
EIN-74-6086197
 
Thank you to all the students, teachers for submitting your Box Tops coupons!!
Duty Free lunch for our teachers the week of Dec 12-16 has been a huge success!

We only need a few more parent volunteers to have the whole week covered.
 
2nd grade lunch: 2 volunteers needed for Friday.
4th grade lunch: 1 volunteer needed for Friday.
5th grade lunch: 1 volunteer needed for Friday.

LINK TO NOMINATE FOR SCHOOL BELL AWARD: 




IT'S NOT TOO LATE TO DONATE TO HCE ANNUAL FUND!!
Go online to www.hcepta.com or drop off a check to front office,
send through your child's backpack or mail to:
Ketti Collins, 851 Country Ln, Houston, TX 77024
Don't forget to complete your ANNUAL VOLUNTEER REGISTRATION. 

You need to do 2 things to complete your annual volunteer registration. 
1.  Register with SBISD at  https://volunteer.springbranchisd.com/
2.  View the HCE Volunteer Training video and sign the google form.  Or, attend a training at school the first day or first few weeks of school.  

Video of HCE Volunteer Training:   https://youtu.be/-mJQgpiulSw
iKids U After-School Program

iKids U registration is going on now for the 201 6 -201 7  School Year!  

Turn in registrations at the HCE front office, visit iKids online at www.ikidsinc.com, or register by phone at 713-665-5200.  iKids U offers a variety of onsite after-school opportunities at HCE including Stay & Play, Enrichment classes, and One on One services.  Customize your child's after-school schedule with part-time and full-time options available!  iKids U starts on the first day of school and classes are filling-up fast so enroll today!
 
Please CLICK HERE to download a registration form  
Hunters Creek Elementary | School & PTA | 713-251-6000| Email | Website

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