Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Christmas presents you can feel good about!

Want something fun to give this Christmas?

Christmas is a time of giving to more than just those around you; Christmas is about helping others. However, this Christmas looks to be a little more challenging than most we've experienced. With limited funds, it will be difficult to provide gifts for family and friends, while also donating to your favorite non-profit organization.

But we have a solution!!

The 2nd-5th graders at the After-School Academy have been hard at work learning how to use Microsoft Publisher and creating pages for our First Annual CDM cookbook--Food for Thought! The 8 1/2" x 11" cookbook is full of recipes from our Central Dallas Ministries' staff, volunteers, friends, family, and our community.

As an added benefit, you will also get some of the kids' very own recipes! As I taught the technology class this semester, some of the kids insisted they wanted to type in the recipes. Week after week I tried to explain to them, "Just make the backgrounds! We will insert the recipes later!" Finally, Melvin, seeming somewhat frustrated, explained to me, "I already know the recipe!!" He went on to explain how you, "open the box, pour the cake mix in, add other ingredients, stir, etc." Probably just as frustrated as he was, I said, "Fine. Go ahead and write your recipe." (I should know by now that my ideas aren't always the best ones). As a result of Melvin's insistence, we now have cool recipes like:

"Brownies to Die For "

To make the brownies with nuts, first you will need Cake Mix, 2 eggs, water, and oil. Now when you got that lets cook. Pour the cake mix, put 2 eggs, and nuts. Pour 1/2 cup of water. Now pour 3/4 cup of oil. Stir real good. Now get a pan but spray it with butter. Now pour mix in the pan. Put in oven. Take it out. Put the nuts in the cake. Now put the chocolate icing on it.

But that's not all!! (isn't that what they always say in the info-mercials? :) )

The cookbook not only provides a variety of recipes, but shares the story of the CDM mission and the great programs that support our neighbors and friends in the community. The great thing for the kids who designed the cookbook is that...

All proceeds received from the sale of "Food For Thought" will go to support the After-School Academy in their efforts to provide technology classes, chess classes, art classes, interactive science, financial literacy, family game days, and so much more!!

Buy them for friends...family...co-workers. They are only $10 (please include an extra $2 if you would like them shipped to you). Hurry, though! Orders are due by THIS FRIDAY, DECEMBER 12!!

To place a quick order:

  1. Go to www.centraldallasministries.org/donate.
  2. After filling out the first page, click "continue" to go to the second page.
  3. You can either check one of the set amounts...or click on "Other" and tell what amount you are giving.
  4. In the "designation" box, scroll down and choose, "Children's education and after-school programs,"
  5. In the comments section make sure to type in COOKBOOK (otherwise, we will have no idea you want a cookbook!) and...
  6. Make note of whether you will pick up the cookbook(s) or whether you wish to have them mailed to you. If you wish to have it mailed, please include the address in the memo box.

The cookbooks will be ready December 19th-December 24th (noon) at 409 N. Haskell, Dallas, TX 75246, if you would like to pick them up yourself.


Saturday, November 29, 2008

long time coming

sorry been a bit busy, but i will finally post the pictures ive taken from art class and one's from the start of the program.

ive had a wonderful so far this school year.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Wyshina's life is to be celebrated

As many of you know, Wyshina Harris was tragically killed last Saturday. She will truly be missed. Below are portions of messages that people associated with the ASA in Turner Courts have sent in. They say a lot about her life and her legacy.


I knew Ms. Wyshina from the ASA. I also remember Ms. Wyshina for her determination. Every day she always made sure we did our homework. If we didn’t have any, then she would get us some on our grade level. We always complained that Ms. Wyshina was mean. But I am an example that what she did and how much she cared did and will impact my life. Ms. Wyshina also lived in the same apartments as the ASA. So, you know she was there every day with a big smile on her face and that put smiles on everybody else’s faces. ~DaQwalon Hinton, ASA student and volunteer

I remember going to the ballgame with Ms. Wyshina. Your mom was a really great teacher. She would always make sure that I would do my homework. She would make sure that I stayed out of trouble. I would really love to start back doing “shines.” I remember when we went on a field trip and we did a trail hunt. That was a good idea that Ms. Wyshina came up with. ~Tyrece Clark, ASA student

Each time I entered the ASA, Ms. Wyshina greeted me with a smile saying, “Hello, Mr. Carmen!” Then, the other students greeted me saying, “Hello, Mr. Carmen.” She was observant and focused in what she wanted to do. She had patience, was respectful, and had a beautiful smile for everyone. ~Mr. Carmen, ASA Chess teacher

I met Wyshina when she and Janet Morrison hosted a parenting educational meeting at Turner Courts. I remember the enthusiasm of Wyshina and the whole group. They were looking to be the “best moms” they could for their kids. I encountered Wyshina on many other occasions, such as when she was helping to coordinate fundraising events for the After-School Academy. ~Deborah Lane, Dallas Healthy Start

I came to Know Wyshina through the afterschool program at Turner Courts where my son, Joshua, attended. I remember her as being a joyful, positive person to be around. I lived in Turner Courts for over four years. The first two years I was afraid to let my kids go outside. One day I saw a sign posting for an afterschool program. I enrolled my son, Joshua, into the program. When I met the staff at the center, everyone was so nice. My son attended the program for two years. Through those two years of him attending the program, our family went from not knowing anyone in the area to participating in all kinds of fundraisers and field trips. Knowing Wyshina was a blessing because she was always making the kids stay focused on their studies and teaching them how to use their manners. I remember one day I went to pick up Joshua from the afterschool program and Wyshina asked me if I wanted to play volleyball with them. I told her to let me think about it. She said, “Come on! It will be fun!” I agreed and went. That evening, I had so much fun and I was happy that she invited me. Every day that I picked up Joshua, she would go out of her way to say hello and she would ask how we were doing. She was a true go-getter, making sure all the parents participated with donating items for fundraisers and coming to the parent meetings. She was a very dedicated person to her job, family, and community. She has left nothing but positive memories for me and my kids to remember her by. ~Rosalind Henry, parent

I will always remember when Wyshina lived in Turner Courts and we talked about how she was constantly going up to H. S. Thompson school to make sure her children got a good education. She did her research, and made sure that her children’s teachers knew that she was an involved parent. I saw her as a future “Big Mama” of the neighborhood with an open door. She was a person who did her best to keep all kids on the right path. Michael Davis, Dallas Progress

My children both describe Wyshina as a caring and loving person. They both remembered her loving them just like her own children. Deshala told me that she can remember when she would volunteer, Ms. Wyshina wanted them to be responsible and show respect to the children. I will always remember for myself the person she was. She was always the same. She embraced the children and showed no difference in them. Wyshina was a very special lady and will always be remembered with me and my children. ~Talisha Tucker, parent

Wyshina Harris first struck me as such a cool, down to earth sista. I was always so impressed at the atmosphere of respect and love that she and Sylvia created and expected from the students at Turner Courts. When you walked in, the children would introduce themselves and greet you. She taught them that classy, simple, old school way that the world needs more of. ~Sista T (Tisha Crear), South Dallas Cultural Center

I will never forget when I brought my daughter to Turner Courts one afternoon for the bake sale that Wyshina had organized. Wyshina’s bright smile instantly won over my daughter, who was less than 2 years old at the time and not always open to strangers. Maddie (my daughter) quickly latched onto Wyshina, who introduced her to all of the other kids and helped her to feel comfortable around all of the “big kids.” Wyshina had that affect on people: you felt like you were “at home” with her. That afternoon, thanks to Wyshina’s exuberance, I had the chance to watch my daughter try to dance for the first time: bopping up and down while giggling with delight! Wyshina’s heart brought out joy in the hearts of everyone around her. - Jeremy Gregg

Wyshina Harris was a woman who likely had plenty of reasons to just give up on life, to quit. But, she never did. She possessed too much courage, class, strength and love for her family, her community and her God to ever give up the fight. She served and served well wherever she found herself. She was proud of her children, loved her friends and family, and was devoted to her community. She was a person who always kept looking for ways to make a difference for others, no matter how many personal challenges she faced that no one knew of. Wyshina was a genuine "community builder." ~Larry James, President and CEO, CDM

I met Wyshina a few years ago when I was doing an internship for Central Dallas Ministries. My favorite part of the week was the afternoon I spent helping out at the After School Academy at Turner Courts. Wyshina was there every day when the kids came in from school with a smile or a hug, a snack, and help with homework. She made a difference every day by being there, by being someone the kids could talk to, by being someone who was on their side. Wyshina was always there for me, too. She helped me get to know everyone, taught me what the ASA was all about, and was always someone I could ask for help if I needed it. ~Courtney Van Zandt, intern

Friday, October 24, 2008

Creating a Parent Dialogue

Last Wednesday, we had our first "Parent Dialogue."

Why did we call it that?

We decided we don't like using the term, "meeting." Meetings imply that one person is in charge and talking *to* some people.

We want and encourage two-way conversation...and we want that to include parents.

We started off the conversation with, What do you want for your children?

As you might expect, the parents of our After-School Academy children are no different than anyone else. Top on their list was...

  • Education
  • Study habits
  • homework help
  • quality education
  • Life skills--such as learning how to pay bills, cook, clean, use a checkbook
  • structure
  • good self-esteem and being comfortable with themselves
  • college and/or trade school
  • work skills
  • health care--dental, medical
  • being successful
  • good morals
  • respect for people
  • independence
  • having the Lord in their life

As we talked, parents expressed a desire to be more involved with things that could teach them how to help their child with homework...help them to become a better parent...help them to know the best strategies to work with their child.

A frustration that seemed common amongst all of the parents was that they didn't feel like the school communicated with them. They didn't like being excluded from their child's life.

So, we are working to figure out ways that we can all work together, form relationships, and make some of these things happen....recognizing that parents and the children should be the focus of our efforts.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse was Positively Praise-worthy!

It was an exhausting week.

By Friday, I wanted to be an irresponsible Director of Education. I wanted to cancel our staff development training and cancel our trip with the kids who had "purchased" the Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse tickets with their earned checkbook money. Unfortunately for me, I'm nearly incapable of doing that.

Sylvia and I had accessed the tickets through the Free Night of Theater. I want to get back in the habit of taking small groups of children on fun field trips. Taking only two or three kids creates a completely different opportunity to bond with the kids than when taking all 30 at once.

So, after work, Sylvia and I followed through on our promise and took two of the kids to Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse.

As I should know by now, the event energized us.

We laughed. We danced in our seats. We were sad for Lilly. We felt her pain when she felt ignored. Then, we laughed again when she made amends and life was good again.

Of course, my favorite part is watching the kids. I loved to see Zykia dancing in her seat. I loved watching Jason repeat the lines in the voices of the characters. I loved that they were so excited to meet the characters when the play was over. We stood in line for every single character to get autographs and take pictures.

With exposure, I hope the kids discover something new. At the theater, not only did we get to experience a different medium...a play instead of a typical movie...but we also experienced a new career possibility. As I watched Jason recite the lines all the way home and to his mother once he got home, I couldn't help but think we may have just inspired the beginnings of an actor. I instantly began thinking about a new volunteer we will soon have who used to teach drama and have high hopes that we can inspire this new interest and intrigue.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Creating our own "Recipe for Success"

13 2nd-5th graders
13 Computers with Publisher software
2 adult assistants
1 computer teacher
Internet to provide access to large amounts of clip art

Take two adult assistants. Walk 13 2nd-5th graders three blocks to the Ransom Technology Learning Center. Seat each child at a computer equipped with Microsoft Publisher. Explain the goal: design a recipe book.

Using an overhead projector, demonstrate how to search for and access clip art. Show kids how to move clip art around on the page. Next, let each child pick a theme relevant to a recipe book. Finally, let each child work independently on his/her computer to design a page for the recipe book.

Yield: Recipe books that will be sold for a fundraiser

Note: Proceeds to go to the After-School Academy. Will be available for Christmas presents.

Get your orders ready!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Teaching the financial process

Friday, the After-School Academy took a field trip to Washington Mutual.
We prepared to "act like bankers" before we went in. Four parents went with us so that their children could open a savings account. The bank allowed the children to put in as little as 25 cents to start saving. Nine children opened savings accounts.

As the kids waited,

...parents set up their child's savings accounts

...grandparents set up their grandchildren savings accounts

...parents/grandparents taught their children/grandchildren how to deposit their money

...kids were taught how to read a deposit receipt

...and kids interviewed the bankers.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Board games...the perfect teaching tool

As we played, the kids had to count the squares (which are labeled 1-100). The kids had to gain an understanding of how to wait their turn. They had to work on moving from one space to the next without skipping around the board (which, for some reason, seems to parallel the problems the often have with the way they do their math problems). They also learned about concepts of addition by helping a kid understand that if they are on square 53 and move 5 spaces, they advance to square 58. They had to learn good sportsmanship because I wouldn't allow them to quit the game because they were behind...and when Tyrese won, we each reached across the board to shake his hand and say, "Good game, Tyrese."

Overall, though, it allowed me (an adult) to have personal interaction time with the kids...which a lot of our kids, these days, don't get enough of.

As soon as I was finished, a few kids who saw me playing Chutes and Ladders quickly asked me to show them how to play Monopoly. I knew I was on to something when I explained began explaining how to buy property on the Monopoly board and Eddie, a kindergartener referred to the checkbook system we've been using for discipline...which allows the kids to earn or lose money based on their attendance, participation, and behavior...and then allows them to "buy" activities and field trips. Eddie immediately made the connection of buying the property on the monopoly board to saving and spending money from his checkbook: "It's like our checkbook! It's just like when we can choose to buy a camera or a voice recorder!"

Sometimes I think we try so hard to make sure we have "results" that we forget these natural and fun ways of learning. And we forget how much it means to kids that someone sits down with them, focuses solely on them, and teaches them lessons they can carry with them.

Anyone have any children's board games they would like to donate? If so, call/email me!

note: photos taken by Melvin, 5th grade

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Teach them and they will learn!

I usually have higher expectations than can be met. But this year, I think I've already exceeded my own expectations! I am thoroughly impressed with our group of 30 kids, our 2 Americorps members, our numerous volunteers, and Sylvia!

This year we have created a checkbook system for our discipline. The kids earn $5 simply for showing up (because sometimes 1/2 the battle is won simply by showing up!). They earn and lose "money" from their check register based on their behavior. With their "money," they can "buy" opportunities to be the photographer for the day...reporter for the day...field trips...weekend take-home activites...etc.

In addition to their daily financial lessons, they all have financial literacy classes on Monday...and this Friday we will take a field trip to WaMu so the kids (with their parents, of course) will learn about and be able to open a savings account where they can start by depositing as little as 25 cents.

I think one of the best things my parents taught me early on was how to write a check, manage my money, and make wise choices with what I had. I hope that we can do the same for the kids in our After-School Academy.

So far, it seems to be working. We "sold" two tickets to Lily's Purple Plastic Purse next Friday for $50. Two kids had enough money to buy the tickets. Others were disappointed that they, too, weren't getting the chance to go.

This particular picture must be one of the kids showing off his large balance in his checkbook. :)

All of the pictures here were taken by kids who "bought" the camera for a day in order to be a photographer-for-a-day.

These are great kids! I'll write about our Microsoft Publisher class in the next post.

Thursday, October 02, 2008


It is so great seeing the kids learning how to play chess. They are very attentive and are really learning the game of chess. They have a great chess teacher. I am even learning how to play :) I can't wait to see the students in competition, I believe they will be ready, and it will be a great experience.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Bingo And Banking!!

I loved watching the older kids play bingo yesterday. Ms. Gilbert showed them how to play bingo using money and math. What they had to do was, when she called out the amount of money, they had to look on their bingo card and add up the money to equal the same amount that she called out. They seemed very excited. I don't even think that they were aware that they were learning math. She made it fun for them, so to them they were merely playing a game. Most of all, I think Ms. Doris who assisted Ms. Gilbert was more crunk than the children. It was nice to see the staff be engaged and excited, because once the children see her having fun, they will themselves get excited. Way to go Ms. Doris

Bankers of Today!!!

I love the fact that we have a financial Literacy class. The children are learning how to write checks and balance their checkbooks. We are talking about Kindergarten-5th grade, and they are doing a great job. This is helping them brush up on thir math skills also. Ms. Janet taught the younger kids yesterday on how to add and take away when using their check registers. This new way fo discipline is working out very well. The children know that they can earn money(not real money) for good behavior or they can get money taken away if the make bad choices. If they get enough money they can purchase items from the ASA to use for the day, like: a camera, voice recorder or weekend back pack full of goodies. They love it ! Three have already bought either a camera or voice recorder. Now, the other kids are working very hard to earn enough to do the same. I wish that, when I was younger, some one would have taught me how to save and balance my money. I think that bringing this class into the ASA was a brilliant idea, with the way the economy is going by the children learning this now, it will profit them in the future. One of our upcoming fiels trips will be to WaMu, so that the children and their parents can open up their very own savings account.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Good Day At ASA!

Today we had a good day with our Financial Literacy class 3rd-5th grade. The kids had a great time playing BINGO with money. So for instance, they had to find B .15 cent. They had fun while learning how to count money.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

We are moving!

Though we still have some paperwork to do before it is official, the Dallas Housing Authority has graciously allowed us to have a WONDERFUL space that will be our own.

In all of my years of working with kids, we have never had space that is brand new and solely our own to use. Knowing that we will now have this space is such an exciting time for us, filled with so many new possibilities!

Yesterday, during a staff development meeting, I took the staff (Sylvia and our three Americorps members) down to the new space so we could begin envisioning how to decorate and what classes to have where. I was so excited when the staff walked in and I watched their eyes get big with excitement and immediately started throwing out ideas. Their energy made me so proud and pleased to have acquired these four as staff this year.

Andricka (a senior at Skyline high school and first time Americorps member) couldn't believe she was going to have her own classroom for her Kinder-2nd grade kids. I kept chuckling as she continued to beg for a classroom of her own... "Please, can I have that classroom for my kids? (as she carefully choose a specific room for her class)" It took several times to convince her, "Yes, Andricka. That can be your classroom." "Really???" "Yes, Andricka. It's your classroom for your kids."

She's already throwing around new ideas of how to decorate for her Voting and Elections class and figuring out how to implement her new Math class (after going to an amazing PBS math training we received through a grant).

I love getting the right people on board. It makes all the difference in the world when people are excited about education, excited about learning, excited about teaching kids, and excited about working with parents. With Ms. Doris, Kristina, Andricka, and Ms. Sylvia, I know we have the right team!

Never lose faith!

For the last four months, our After-School Academy has been in limbo. With staff cutbacks and the upcoming demolition of Turner Courts, it has been challenging to figure out how to transition to a new program in Roseland TownHomes.

After growing a program for 8+ years, it's really hard to figure out how it all started and to replicate that. It's also hard because we and those around us expect us to start where we left off--with a full slate of 30 kids. On top of that, we have the challenge of figuring out how to restructure the program with less staff and uncertainty about a location.

We did start, though. The Central Dallas Church was gracious enough to allow us in their facility for as long as we needed. We are partnering with J.W. Ray (thanks to Ms. Brenda Powers, Community Liaison) and have two chess club rotations (thanks to Carmen Chairez, Minority Business Development Association)--20-25 kids in the first class and 8-10 kids in the second class! Jennifer Africawala (CDM Americorps program) helped me figure out how to have 3 Americorps members instead of two...and Kristina Williams, Andricka Lindsay, and Doris Thomas are absolutely wonderful!

Texas Capital Bank (Richard Mauldin) and United Central Bank (Cheryl Gilbert) provide finance classes for our elementary kids and we offer art classes through Theresa Cissell (another Americorps volunteer) and Catherine Hamrick (a Richland art major). And more people keep coming!

Sylvia Baylor has been amazing as she has been so willing to step in to coordinate the program in our transition. It is because of her, as well as the help of Marva Epperson-Brown, Danielle Evans, and Kim Johnson (other CDM staff), that we now have 26 kids enrolled and are growing every day! It is also because of Sylvia that we will now have a reading teacher from J.W. Ray Elementary volunteering with us once or twice a week!

There are more partnerships that I'll tell about in future posts. For now, we are off to a great start!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

What's going on...

Mobile post sent by janetmorrison using Utterli. reply-count Replies. mp3

Monday, May 19, 2008


Do you know the asa is fun

i past

i made command porformance on every taks i did im going to middle school!!!!!

I PAST!!!!

I past the reading,math,and made comended on writting.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Cinco De Mayo/PTA Event

I had soooo!! much fun. This was my first time ever going to one of these events. It was given by my sons school and the surrounding schools in the neighborhood. I have always wanted to get involved with my kids schools, but never did. I am glad that I went. They had it set up where you could still celebrate and mingle with the teachers, principals, students and many more. I really enjoyed myself, from playing games to doing the cupid shuffle on their dance floor. I wasn't even nervous, I love this dance so, I was more than willing to participate, plus I think that by getting involved, let my kids know that I support them and their schools. I will continue to go to these events because they help educate us as parents.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

its over

Finally the Taks is over i am happy.

its over

Finally the Taks is over i am happy.

its over

Finally the Taks is over i am happy.

its over

Finally the Taks is over i am happy.

its over

Finally the Taks is over i am happy.

i mad e commanded on my math taks test and i fill good about it

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Lessons in table etiquette

Ms. Colleen came and taught us table etiquette.

Jordan talks with Ms. Colleen about the proper way to eat soup from a bowl...and it's not tipping the bowl up and drinking it!

We learned how to set a table, when to say please and thank you, how to hold a door open for people, and much more.

For you guys in the ASA, what else am I forgetting? What else did Ms. Colleen teach us on Friday?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The math TAKS

Today i did the math TAKS.It was easy because i am good at math.Tomorrow is the Reading TAKS iI thank I will pass it to.

2 more days for my last taks test and i am ready!!!!!

Monday, April 28, 2008

what I did at school

today i took the itbs test

Monday, April 21, 2008

The asa is fun.

what did I do today at school

I went to computers today for my brake time

Today we saw a movre colde Sky High .It was fun to look at . At the end it was funny.

what did I do today at school0.

A great Day

Today I learned a lot of science like the water cycle and some more stagies to keep in my head for my big taks test.

It was a hothot day in the classroom.I was sweating alot. We had to take of our jackets.


i made commaned on my math test and made commanded on my reading test and hope to make a commanded on my up coming test

the taks

I am glad about the taks because i want to pass to the fith grade. I already did the writting test all i need to do is just pass the math and the reading test.I am good at both subject.

Monday, April 14, 2008

TODAY is fun day

what i think

we have not did our 2nd interveiw yet but get ready for it.




Hi everyone How do you like the asa

Monday, April 07, 2008

Todays interview was great with Dana Arnick.

Today I filmed ms.Dana Arnick and this Is how I felt,I felt glad that I had to film her and it was very fun to learn something new about the recorder and I hope to do it again.

first interview

What i thougt about our first interview Ms.Dana,i thouht that we did very good because we did what we were ask, we did all of our questoins and Ms.Dana answer and we did our very best with yhe picture takeing by Jordan Waren and the veidio from Janiya.

The interveiw

I think about the first interview that it was grate.We interviewed Mrs.Dana.I think i did grate saying the questions and Daedrin.Jordan took some grate picturs,and Janiya record good.

The interview

The interview was great cause I learn how Ms.Dana feel about Tuner Courts.

Friday, April 04, 2008

New Cooking Class Success!!

Things are really well for the cooking class. Mrs. Jessica is now the new teacher and she is doing a great job! The kids really respond well with her. They made a Humpty Dumpty dish. It was really cute!! I thought I would share some of their masterpieces.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008










What can I say! This is what progress means to me. I am blessed and I truly thank God for moving in C.J. life. He has really been having some troubles at his old school with his grades. I knew that C.J. could develop much better in a caring school environment. I just love his teacher Ms. YoungBlood, she is his math teacher. After talking with her, my heart was at ease. I have really noticed a change in his school work, but his behavior has yet to reach it's full potential. Yet and still I am so proud of Him. Yesterday I received his report card from Bayles Elementary. I was overwhelmed! I just wanted to cry! He did an awesome job!!!!!! here are the results.


Social Studies-75




Compared to the grades he received from H.S.Thompson, his grades have went up.


Social Studies-50




Now what does that tell you? It tells me that if you have positive influences in the schools our children can succeed!! Good Job Stank!!!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

C.J. In the Black History Program

I was so proud of C.J. he has now started a new school. He is doing alot better. He still has his bad days, but I know it will get better. The teachers at Bayles Elementary seem to have the kids feelings at heart. Last week C.J. participated in the Black History Program, He did a great job. It amazes me that He knows so much about Black History. The things he was saying I never knew, or don't remember. I was learning from Him. That is sooooooo! cool. He stood up in front of people like a champ. I also like how the attendance was overwhelming! It was packed all in the highway. That is what I like to see, Parent-Teacher involvement. Their step team also did a great job. Way To Go Kids!!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

New Beginnings

Mrs. Jessica, our amazing intern, will help with homework, and as I found out yesterday, will help in any way possible.

Mr. Hector our intern/americops member. He is teaching Spanish and science to our 2nd and 3rd graders.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Way To Go C.J.!!!!

I am soooo proud of C.J. He is doing really well in school. He passed all of his bench mark tests. What really impressed me is that he made a 96 on his reading benchmark. How great is that I was so happy!!! keep up the good work!!! Momma love you!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Working together!!!

This semester the kids are doing really well at working together. I don't know if they grew up over the holidays or what, but whatever happened I like it. They are teaming up during homework time to help each other. How awesome is that. We have a ways to go , but the kids are really improving. Thsy seem to like cooking class a whole lot. I know they like to eat, but I really do want them to learn how to prepare certain foods that require little or no cooking at the stove. They are really great kids. They just need some love and compassion in their lives. Way To Go Kids

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

James is saving money!!

James went to engineering camp at UTA last summer. You can read his post about it here. He spent a whole week on the UTA campus studying aerospace engineering, visiting corporations who utilize engineering, listening to engineers speak about their field, conducting different experiments, and so much more. He loved it so much that he is still excited about going back.

So...he's getting ready by saving his money. The camp is $375. I have put a thermometer to the right that will show James' progress.

For other 6th, 7th, and 8th graders...you, too, can have a thermometer. Let me know if you want to start saving your money to go!

For adults...you can help encourage their progress by pledging a match here: http://www.active.com/donate/centraldallas/engineering

New Semester!!!

Today started The first day at the ASA. We are ready to see what the kids have in store for us. I am really glad that we will be starting a new plan to help the kids get back on track. I think that the new strategies that we will be using are going to help tremendously. The kids are really sweet kids. They just need some redirection. I am going to work really hard to help them be positive in everything that they do. It is going to be a great semester!!!We have a great team of players. Everyone is anxious to see the kids today!! I applaud each and everyone of my co-workers for their hardwork and dedication.