Calling all superheroes! Whether you have volunteered your time or served as an event sponsor, please join us for our PTA Superhero Breakfast this Thursday, May 17th from 7:30 to 8:00 am in the library. This is our opportunity to thank YOU for making Travis a great place to be due to our strong parental support. All school volunteers, donors, and sponsors are welcome! Stay for the final PTA meeting of the year at 8:00 am, when the 2018-19 PTA budget will be presented for approval. Remember that you must be a PTA member to vote, so if you haven't yet joined, you can do so online HERE.
Look for the 2018 Travis Silver Rocket coming to classrooms this Friday, May 18th. Then join us for our publication party on Saturday, May 19th at Kaboom Books (3116 Houston Avenue) from 4:00 to 6:00 pm. We invite the entire Travis community to come hear readings and see original art from the new edition. For questions, contact Stephanie Yankowsky.
To help kick off summer reading, the Astros Literacy Bus will be visiting our campus on Tuesday, May 22nd to give away books to the students! Please let Mrs. Sims know if you have questions. Let’s build those reading skills with books this summer!
This year, HISD is partnering with the Houston Public Library to promote summer reading through their Summer Block Party program. Every student at Travis who reads and logs at least the minimum of 10 days will be invited to a Travis Block Party after school on Thursday, September 6, 2018. Your ticket to the Travis Block Party will be your printed log from HPL, which is due to Mrs. Sims no later than Friday, August 31, 2018. Registration start today!
Learn more at http://houstonlibrary.org/summer.
Save the date for Dinner in the Garden on Thursday, May 24th from 5:00 to 7:00 pm! We will be grilling up hotdogs, bratwurst and veggie dogs. Bring a blanket to sit on and picnic in the garden with your family to celebrate the end of the school year! Along with the dogs and Wurst we will be selling chips, cookies, popsicles and drinks. All proceeds from concessions go to the PTA.
Congratulations to the Travis Track Team who recently competed in a HISD Elementary track meet against hundreds of other athletes. The Tigers ran hard and finished strong with many admirable achievements!
Notable finishes for 4th grade:
200 Meter Dash: Emmet Clanton - 3rd place
400 Meter Dash: Lourdes Alvarez - 3rd place
Sprint Medley Relay: Graham Bishop, Wesley Decker,
Gabriel Decker, Emmett Clanton - 3rd place
Softball Throw: Marlena Mesa - 1st place
Long Jump: Maya Anderson - 1st place
Notable finishes for 5th grade:
100 Meter Dash: Mia Mallory & Sanne Meppelink - 3rd place
400 Meter Dash: Andre Godin - 3rd place, Zoe Sanchez - 2nd place, Drake Sturn - 1st place
800 Meter Dash: Bianka Enriquez - 3rd place, Landon Donnelly - 2nd place,
Enya Krathaus - 2nd place, Elizabeth Pope - 1st place
Softball Throw: Helen Maddux - 2nd place
Long Jump: Olivia Sepolio - 2nd place, John Powers - 2nd place,
Zoe Sanchez -1st place, Landon Donnelly - 1st place
On May 11th, Travis celebrated the dedication of the Open Doors art installation in the school garden. These beautiful doors, painted on one side by a French artist and the other by a Texan artist, celebrate the doors in our lives that represent both the satisfaction of conclusion and the excitement of new opportunity.
Mr. Day hosted the event, where we welcomed representatives from the Texan-French Alliance for the Arts, a member of the French consul, and a former Consul General of Mexico, who also happens to be a Travis grandparent! First, third, and fourth graders read poems inspired by the doors (and blew all the adults away with their compositions!).
Thank you to Texan-French Alliance for the Arts and Executive Director Karine Parker-Lemoyne for the loan of the doors and to Travis parent Yvonamor Palix for bringing them to Travis. Our Travis community never ceases to amaze!
Last month in PE class, students participated in Jump Rope for Heart /Hoops for Heart and jumped rope and shot hoops while learning how nutrition and physical activity can help them live longer, healthier lives. Community service was also promoted by teaching students how to help others. The Travis school community helped raise over $9,000 for the American Heart Association, supporting their life-saving efforts in the areas of research, education and reaching populations at risk!
Travis Heart Heroes (some of our top fundraisers) were:
As a reminder, please be sure to check the lost and found before the school year ends and items are sent off for donation. You might be surprised at what you find there!
Join the PTA in the library on May 17th at 7:30am (we're getting you prepped for next year's start time!) to celebrate YOU! All school volunteers, donors, and sponsors are welcome as we honor the contributions of our Army of Awesome over the last school year. Stay for the final PTA meeting of the year at 8am, when the 2018-19 PTA budget will be presented for approval. Remember that you must be a PTA member to vote, so if you haven't yet joined, you can do so online HERE.
Join our two theatre troupes (made up of third, fourth, and fifth graders) tonight, May 8 and Thursday, May 10 at 6:00pm for their performances of “A Midsummer Night's Dream” by William Shakespeare and “The Importance of Being Earnest” by Oscar Wilde.
The Travis Family and community members are invited to a ceremony to dedicate the recently-installed Art Door sculptures in the Travis Garden to be held this Friday, May 11 at 9:30 a.m.
Sponsored by the Texan French Alliance for the Arts (TFAA), it was Travis parent Yvonamor Palix, a TFAA board member, who brought the idea of opening these doors to the Travis community and who coordinated the installation.
Students have been invited to write a poem or a text inspired by the doors and to present it that day. We hope to have a presence by the French Consulate as well as the City of Houston and TFAA partners. Coffee and pastries will be donated by Yvonamor Palix Fine Arts.
We give thanks to the Bayse-Palix Family for another amazing contribution to our community. We hope to see you at the ceremony.
-- Mr. Day
Look for the new edition of the Silver Rocket coming to students and teachers in their classrooms on Friday, May 18. Then come celebrate with us on Saturday, May 19 at Kaboom Books, 3116 Houston Avenue from 4-6pm. We will have a poetry reading, art display, and the famous Silver Rocket cookies. For questions, contact Stephanie Yankowsky.
Save the date for Dinner in the Garden, Travis' annual community picnic to celebrate a year well lived. More details to come, but be sure to mark May 24th from 5-7pm in your calendar!
Looking for a way to help out Travis, but short on time? Travis Playground Cleanup is just for you. Sign up for a brief debris-hunt around the playground after morning drop-off, or bring the family on a Saturday. Playground cleanup is also perfect for troops looking for a service project. Sign up here and contact Ashley Francis with any questions.
This year, HISD is partnering with the Houston Public Library to promote summer reading through their Summer Block Party program. Every student at Travis who reads and logs at least the minimum of 10 days will be invited to a Travis Block Party after school on Thursday, September 6! Your ticket to the Travis Block Party will be your printed log from HPL, which is due to Mrs. Sims no later than Friday, August 31. Register starting May 15th and learn more at http://houstonlibrary.org/summer.
Remember, there are great resources at your fingertips through the HISD Hub that include the HPL Learning Link. Student access to the HUB is available during the summer and can be found at HoustonISD.org/hub.
Finally, to help kick off summer reading, the Astros Literacy Bus will be visiting our campus on Tuesday, May 22 to give away books to the students! Please let Mrs. Sims know if you have questions. Let’s build those reading skills with books this summer!
Thank you, Kelley Davidson, for a such a fun workout for our last Free Family Fitness event. What a blast! Thank you also to all the families who showed up to get fit.
The whole idea behind the FFF Series was to introduce our Travis Community to a variety of ways to stay active. We offered 8 free sessions of fitness thanks for our instructor volunteers. If you want to find out more about any of the offerings, click the links listed:
Present Time Kids with Heather Goodwin
Marathon Kids with Coach Dodd
Explore Yoga with Karen Miles
Houston Fit Club with Jill Hirshenfang
Power Yoga with Marizol Cabrera
Camp Gladiator with Haley Poinsette
Family Yoga with Traci Williams
POUND with Kelley Davidson
It has been a fun and productive year in our garden. We have been eating every day. Here’s what a typical week looks like now: salads of chard, lettuce, celery, and carrot; parsley or dill butter on crackers; kale smoothies; celery with SunButter; chard fruit roll-ups with SunButter and apple slices; steamed Brussels sprouts; boiled potatoes with rosemary; and soon, we will be enjoying lemon balm tea. With all this eating of healthy snacks, we welcome any contributions of small paper bowls or plate and utensils.
As the year comes to an end, I want to thank everyone who has made garden time so special for our students. It has been a pleasure to make outdoor education come to life this year, and we can look forward to the same next year.
Our pond has taken on new life. Last week during Ms. Butler’s garden time, we heard a lot of croaking from the pond and found eight toads! The next day, there were no more toads, but instead we found long strands of toad eggs. They looked like necklaces with black beads inside a clear jelly casing. A week later, there were tadpoles. Students have been thrilled.
In addition, a turtle turned up in our pond. It is a red-eared slider. Although the goldfish were terrified at first, it turns out this particular turtle is a vegetarian. So, our pond lotus flowers are more at risk than the fish. And, the turtle has been a big hit with students.
Here are a few hints about how to manage our new guests: The tadpoles are swimming freely in the pond. Students should be reminded not to take them out of the pond. Many just want to scoop them up, look at them and return them to the water. However, the water is not the cleanest. And, the tadpoles are probably happier not being disturbed. Our motto in the garden, taken from Ms. Tello, is “What we find in nature, stays in nature.” We look with our eyes, but do not touch or remove.
The turtle has led to more excitement. Students feed the turtle leaves or grass or throw sticks at it to get attention, and several students have fallen into the pond trying to get close or just being happy. I want to assure students that the turtle does not need to be fed, and that it will not show itself if things are used to get its attention. It will simply hide. Finally, I have made a sunning area for the turtle, since it is only partially aquatic. In other words, it needs to be dry sometimes. Please remind your children that the rock area should not be disturbed.
Our garden is grateful for all the love and attention. Our garden creatures -- turtles, butterflies, earth worms, and ladybugs -- are, too.
Girl Scout Troop 25006 has installed several little libraries throughout the Greater Heights communities -- including one on the Florence side of the Travis playground! This project is part of the troop's community service Bronze Award.
The scouts hope the libraries are enjoyed by all! Please feel free to add or borrow books … what a great place place to grab summer reading!
One more month of school to go - can you believe it!? This sure has been a year of growth for our community and for our PTA. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to serve you as a parent leader, and I look forward to one final year in 2018-19 as your PTA President. To that end, I am bringing some pretty terrific people along for the ride next year. In last week's Tiger Beat, you met your newly elected executive officers. Without further ado, let me introduce the chairs and captains that will do some of the heavy lifting as well next year. Please shout a word of thanks next time you see these folks. Here's your 2018-19 PTA Board!
Administrative Representative, Tom Day. Teacher Representative, Natalia Junkans. Co-Treasurer, Tamara Steele. Arts, Lauren Garcia & Lori Horvilleur. Health & Wellness, Rhonda Welch. STEM, Paul O’Sullivan. Communications, Wendy Tull. Hospitality, Langley Cumbie. Membership, Cindy Geisen. Legislative Action, Ruby Powers & Julie O’Sullivan. Grants, Stephanie Riceman. Carnival, Alina Schrom. Auction, Phil Teague.
The following individuals have agreed to serve in captain positions, which are non-board support roles but still oh-so-critical: Tiger Beat Editor, Gaby McBride. Technology, Marie Wise. Concessions, Ashley Throckmorton. Spirit Store, Shelly Anello. Sponsorships, Rebekah Baker.
We still have room at the inn for a co-Treasurer (some background in accounting is helpful) as well as an Environmental Chair. If either of those strikes a chord with you, drop me a line and let's chat!
In other news, I haven't provided an update to you recently about the HISD budget proposals. That's primarily because as soon as I would write an update, things would change! Here's where we currently stand in a nutshell: the district has now returned to a PUA funding model (which is the current model in use), and there will be no separate Vanguard magnet funds from the district (although there will be a small general magnet allocation for every magnet school, including ours). We will see an overall budget reduction at Travis, but Mr. Day is working closely with faculty and staff as well as with PTA and Foundation to ensure that we all stand shoulder-to-shoulder to fill the gaps.
If you want to learn more about how PTA is helping, the PTA budget will be presented for approval by members at the PTA meeting at 8am on May 17th (in the library). Please plan to attend so that you can have a voice in the allocation of funds. We on the board may write the draft, but we need your stamp of approval to put it into action. I hope to see you there!
-Jenny Teague, PTA President
Travis PTA just received a check for $287 thanks to our friends who have registered with Kroger Rewards! When you register with Kroger Rewards, every time you shop at Kroger, Travis receives a small percentage of your total purchase. Enrollment is now online only and takes just a minute or two to complete. Go to Kroger Community Rewards to sign up, using Travis’ code: 82037.