Friday, November 30, 2012

Curriculum Night 2012

On Tuesday 11/27 and Wednesday 11/28, we hosted Curriculum Night 2012.

Our core course teachers shared the instructional expectations of their subject area, STAAR dates and information AND the various modes of instruction used in their classrooms daily. Parents and students heard about the use of PERCEPTUAL MODES in learning and even saw some examples of STAAR test questions from last year's 8th grade ELA test.

Here are a few of the presentations teachers made:

7th Grade

8th Grade

Here are some examples of learning taking place this week in the classrooms at Worley:
        Mr. Parker's 8th grade social studies classes participated in a similation of the Constitutional Convention. Students played the part of the delegates and the classroom was even arranged like the Pennsylvania State House was in 1787!

In Miss Allen's 7th grade science classroom, students studied matter cycles this week. Here's a sample of one of their hands on activities:
Lastly, here's an example of a math student using her desk as a marker board to subtract integers.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Top 10 Things to Ask Your Middle School Student During Thanksgiving Break 2012

Is it a struggle to get your middle school student to share information with you? Well, I've got just the thing for you! Here's my Top 10 List of Things To Ask Your Middle School Student during the Thanksgiving break.

Warning: You may want to ask these questions individually - one at a time, not in rapid fire succession. It has been proven that if we ask a middle school student too many questions back to back...they get confused and start saying "Uhh..I don't know."

Top 10 Things to Ask Your Middle School Student During Thanksgiving Break 2012

10. Can you recite the Worley Tiger Pledge for me?

9. Do you remember your locker number and combination?

8. What’s your favorite class? Why do you like that one?

7. Do you need lunch money added to your account in the cafeteria?

6. Did you want to purchase a yearbook? Do you know which teacher to talk to about ordering the yearbook? (Divona Phillips, Yearbook Sponsor)

5. What’s the name of the last book you checked out of the Worley Library? Did you know that you could go into the library each morning at 8:15 am to use the computers or work on homework? (Must see Mrs. Foulk the day before for a hall pass)

4. How were those Common Assessments last week? How do you feel you did? Were there any tough questions that stumped you?

3. Have you tried to log in to Skyward Student Access yet? Show me that you can.

2. Are there any assignments in your binder, in your backpack, under your bed, on the kitchen table, under your XBOX or in your locker that need to be turned in for a grade?

1. Where is your binder? Is it organized and ready to go for Monday?

Good luck with these questions! If your student starts to get confused by all your questions, step away from the student and offer them some food. After an hour, you should be able to ask them another question.

Enjoy the holiday break!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Order your 2012-13 Worley Yearbook Now!

The 2013 Worley yearbook is now on sale for the lowest price of the year!

The discounted price is only $30, but will go up to the regular price of $35 on Saturday 11-17!

Also remember we ran out of books last year and will again this year. We do not order any extra yearbooks, so you must order now to not only get the lowest price of the year, but to make sure your student receives a 2013 yearbook!

The book will have great photos of your student and their friends! We are focusing this year’s book on getting great coverage of each student!!!

There are two ways to pay. You can turn in a yearbook order form by your student with cash or check to our yearbook staffers before school and at lunch for the next 2 weeks; or pay online at

Order forms can be picked up in the main office during school hours.

Please contact Divona Phillips at  for more information.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Red Ribbon Week 2012 @ Worley

This week has been a whirlwind of lessons and presentations in honor of Red Ribbon Week 2012.

As most people know, Red Ribbon Week is a drug prevention program that is held each year in late October. Students and faculty engage in anti-drug assemblies and advisory type lessons. This week at Worley, we met in advisory classes to hear information how to maintain a drug free lifestyle. Additionally, students participated in an Advisory class poster competition, and an 8th grade Infection Activity/Assembly.

Through 7th grade ELA courses, students heard a story about the consequences of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol from one of our teachers - Ms. Grosvenor.

Our goal this week was to engage our students in meaningful lessons about the possible harmful effects of drugs and alcohol on their lives. Please ask your student about the things they learned this week.

Thanks to our STUCO students and advisor, Mrs. Crumby, for organizing this year's Red Ribbon Week. Also, a special thank you to Mr. Ervin and Mrs. Strange for organizing the 8th grade Infection Activity on Thursday. It takes a lot of time and effort outside of the school day to plan a school wide event. These teachers and students deserve a pat on the back!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Rachel's Challenge Comes to Worley Middle School on October 11th

Worley Tigers are excited to bring Rachel's Challenge to Mansfield!

The Rachel's Challenge organization is a non profit, non political, non religious organization based in Littleton, Colorado. The objective of this program is to equip students and adults with strategies to combat bullying and feelings of isolation or despair.

Seventeen year old Rachel Scott was the first student killed at Columbine High School in 1999. Rachel left behind a legacy of positivity and caring for others through her writings and drawings. Rachel's story has been shared with the world through the Rachel's Challenge organization. Her hope was to start a "chain reaction" of kindness and compassion. (

Our number one reason for inviting Rachel's Challenge to Worley is to change the culture of bullying, teasing and harassment in today's society by empowering our students with the social and emotional tools they need to exist in an ever changing global society. According to the Rachel's Challenge website, the assembly conveys the power of deliberately reaching out in word and action to others. It also encourages listeners to examine their own lives, their relationships with the world around them and the impact their behavior has on others by taking on 5 challenges.

We believe that it is vitality important for our families and our community to hear the Rachel's Challenge message, understand what IS and IS NOT BULLYING and join our student body in taking on the 5 challenges.

Our students have raised the funds to bring Rachel's Challenge to our school through a Fund Run. Thanks to our coaches and students, we have raised enough to pay for the program and the prizes for the run.

Rachel's Challenge will be presented at Worley on Thursday, October 11th for our students at 9:00 am that morning and 7:00 pm for parents and the local community. The one hour evening community event will be held at the MISD Center for the Performing Arts in the Professional Development Room.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Save the Dates!! Upcoming Worley Events

Place these important dates on your family calendar:

1) The STUCO Blackout Dance is this Friday Night from 7-9 pm in the Worley Cafeteria.

2)Tiger Clubs begin next week and run through May 16th. Students may join: the: Soccer Club, Computer Club, Yearbook, Jazz Band, Syfy Club, Drama Club or the Chess Club. More info will be sent home with students this week. Also, check the message center when you log into Skyward Family Access for more detailed information.

3) Parent Conferences will begin on Sept 24th and end on October 12th. Please contact your child's teachers to set up a face to face conference with them.

4) Worley is hosting the first cross country meet of the year on Wednesday, Sept 26th at 5:00pm. Come on out and join us for some running fun!

5) Football and Volleyball are in full swing. Come on out and support our teams on any Monday Night (7th grade football), Tuesday Night (8th grade football) or Thursday Night (Volleyball). You can log onto our athletics website for specific schedule information.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Worley Implements The Ron Clark Experience

Last Spring, two Worley faculty members joined Dr. Butler on a trek to see the world famous Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, Ga . as a part of an MISD district initiative. The team brought back several of Ron Clark's proven strategies to improve student performance and create smaller learning communities within our schools.

The 3 strategies that the team decided to implement for the 2012-13 school year were:
-1:1 Mentoring Program
-Research Based Instructional Strategies

The Houses concept was created by Mr. Clark based on the Harry Potter Hogwarts School. In the popular book series, the houses were small learning and living communities students were assigned to upon enrolling in the school. Students were sorted into one of four houses in a Sorting Hat Ceremony. The houses competed throughout the school year by earning points or losing points for various activities.

We are incorporating the same idea at Worley!

What are the names of the houses at Worley and what do the names mean?

Cenit (pronounced say-neet). Red. Deriving from the Spanish word for zenith, CENIT is comprised of an elite group of students dedicated to being nothing less than the best. You don't just talk the talk, but you walk the walk. Consider yourself the cream of the crop!
Wazi (pronounced wah-zee). Yellow. Derived from the Swahili term for vivid, you and the others that make up the yellow house strive to let your excellence shine brighter and more brilliant than all others. A future so bright, you gotta wear shades!
Epimelís (pronounced app-pee-mall-is). Blue. Derived from the Greek term for diligent, you are industrious and hardworking, and you do all things with style. While others are slacking off and procrastinating, the blue house members know how to put on their hard hats and get the job done. You make the difficult things look so easy!
Biànbié (pronounced bee-an-bey). Orange. Derived from the traditional Chinese term for discern, you think positive and make the right choices. Members of the  orange house are not just all business, but they also know how to have fun! You have mastered the balance of work and play!
Kwé (pronounced kway). Purple. Deriving from the Haitian Creole word for believe, you are accepting, strong-willed and genuine. The purple house is comprised of people that have a firm conviction of what is right and are always in search of the truth. You possess power and strength because of truth!
Sam'māna (pronounced sah-mah-nah).  GreenDerived from the Hindi term for respect, Sam'māna members are held in the highest regard by everyone in the community. They know that in order to receive respect, they have to show it. They are a very caring and endearing group.
How were Houses determined?
At Meet the Teacher Night and during the first few days of school, students selected their house from a random drawing.

Who is in each House?
Each house is made up of 7th and 8th grade students and teachers, as well as office staff and even our custodians:)

What activities will take place this year?
Students and teachers will meet in Houses periodically during the school year. We will host House celebrations, as well.

How can students earn points for their Houses?
There are several reasons why students would earn points for their house. Students will receive tickets from teachers beginning in late September. Tickets can be given for "good behavior", such as - but not exclusive to:
-Encouraging or helping another student
-Helping pick up items dropped in the hallway
-Picking up trash in the cafeteria
-Consistently attending tutorials
-Parent participation in school events

*Tickets will also be given out by office staff members, cafeteria workers and custodians.

How can students lose points for their Houses?
-Poor behavior (referrals, consistent tardies)

Thanks for supporting Worley on this adventure. We are excited to incorporate a smaller community for students to feel like they belong to something worthwhile. Here are some pictures of the ways teachers have incorporated one of the Ron Clark strategies - personalizing the learning environment:

Monday, August 13, 2012

Follow us on Twitter!!

Follow us @WorleyMiddleSch on Twitter for the latest news, up coming events and last minute reminders for students!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Back to School Important Dates - SAVE THE DATE!!

August 14th - 7th Grade Orientation Camp

August 23rd - Meet the Teacher Night and Schedule Pick Up from 5:30 pm - 8:00 pm
*FOOD and Spirit Items will be available for purchase. We will also host an Anti Bullying Rally from 7:00-7:45 pm in the gym for parents and students. And bring $$ to join our PTA!

August 24th - Schedule Pick Up from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm

August 27th - First Day of School, New School Hours 8:45am to 4:10 pm

Sept 6th - Fall Picture Day

We look forward to seeing everyone here and ready to begin a SUCCESSFUL, SAFE and SUPPORTIVE school year!

See you soon:)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Worley 8th Graders Prepare for Life After College - Begin with the END in mind!

Today, our 8th grade students visited the TCC Mobile Go Center to learn about their options regarding future careers, college choices and general life choices.

Students used an online website College for All Texans to decide their life plan.

Students considered:

How much do I need to make each year or month to support the lifestyle I want to lead?

Which college can I attend to pursue the career I am interested in?

What career am I interested in?

Today's visit was both informative and exciting for most students. It was pretty neat to watch them create a life plan and start to consider everything they need to accomplish in high school to make that plan come alive.

We are helping our 8th graders begin their high school career with their ultimate career goals in mind!

It's never too early to start planning your future.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Worley AVID Goes to UT and Baylor!!

Last week, our 8th grade AVID students made two whirlwind college visits to the University of Texas in Austin on April 30th and Baylor University in Waco on May 2nd.

AVID sponsors - Leah Roberts and Jana Douglas- said the students were mesmerized by the vastness of UT and the personalized attention they received at Baylor. Students toured both campuses visiting the cafeteria, the dorms and even a 300 seat lecture hall. Students learned quite a bit about the culture of both campuses. On the ride home from Waco, the students reflected on their visits. Students compared the pros and cons of each university.
Exposing students to the college experience is the entire objective of the AVID program. All year, our students have been learning what it takes to make it to college AND how to be successful once they've made it there!

We are so proud that our Worley Tigers are already preparing for their college experience. It's never too early to make college plans.

Sic 'em Bears! 

Hook 'em Horns!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Dr. B's Breakfast Book Club is reading Divergent by Veronica Roth

We are reading Divergent at Worley!

Divergent is a novel about a 16 year old girl named Beatrice Prior living in futuristic Chicago. This new society  is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue - CANDOR (the honest), ABNEGATION (the selfless), DAUNTLESS (the brave), AMITY (the peaceful) and ERUDITE ( the intelligent). Beatrice must select the faction in which she will live for the rest of her life. The decision may take her away from her family forever. (from Veronica Roth's blog,

The book is such a page turner. Often, it has me at the end of my seat! The book makes you want to keep reading. I find myself saying, "I'm going to read just one more page...OK, just one more chapter!" Beatrice's character encounters tough decisions regarding friends, foes, family and what she will do with the rest of her life. It is such an interesting tale of a young person's journey to self discovery.

In our first book club meeting this morning, the students shared their ideas and thoughts about the book along with teachers. It was an amazing experience to share our love of books with each other.

Our next book club meeting will be Thursday, May 10th at 8am in the Worley Library. We will discuss pages 167-345. Students are welcomed to bring breakfast and eat while we discuss. Parents and teachers are welcome to join us too!

See you next Thursday!

Monday, April 9, 2012

STAAR Testing Round 2 Coming Soon!

10 days and counting!!

We are preparing students and staff for the second (and last) round of STAAR testing here at Worley. Teachers have organized an academic BOOT CAMP where they focus each day on a specific test objective/student expectation. Students are reviewing information, participating in hands on lessons and working through sample questions provided by the Texas Education Agency.

As with the first round of testing, parents can help by reminding students to READ THE ENTIRE QUESTION. STAAR type questions require students to perform more than one task to get the correct answer. On the past TAKS exams, students could anticipate what the question was asking them to do without reading the entire question AND the questions were usually one step, one task, one calculation.

Also, parents can encourage their student to DO THEIR BEST on the exams. As a teacher and a coach, I always told my students that what you do reflects who you are. We should always strive to score high because our names are forever linked to the results. Represent yourself, your school and your family well!

Lastly, when the tests are over we will continue to have school and learn. The "test" is not the goal of our school year. Acquiring as much knowledge as possible is what is important. What we learn can never be taken away from us.

Happy Testing!!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Campus Faculty Visits Ron Clark Academy

On Feb 23-26, Ms. Phillips (language arts teacher) and Mr. Addison (science teacher) joined me on a district wide professional development visit to the Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, Ga.

Educators from all over the world visit the Ron Clark Academy each year to learn more about his ground breaking and highly successful instructional methods. Ron Clark is a highly celebrated and extremely motivating teacher and campus leader. His 5th grade through 8th grade campus is made up of various types of students - low income, high income, African American, Hispanic, high achiever, low achievers and even special education students. Yet, his students are some of the most successful students in the nation.

The school is full of life! We were amazed by the level of academic rigor and the behavior of the students. We were greeted by students who shook our hands, looked us in the eye and spoke with such conviction about who they were, what they believe and what their future holds. The teachers were just as impressive. The demanding academic culture is well balanced with instructional innovation, creativity, passion and relationship building. There is no doubt in our minds (or the students' minds) that these teachers LOVE their students.

The most amazing part of the visit was the opportunity to sit in a 5th grade math classroom while Ron Clark taught math. He teaches 5th grade students 7th grade math curriculum! That's raising the bar! We also attended workshops presented by other faculty members that included Writing the using the Blues, How to have a creative classroom, Connecting with parents and Ten Free Websites No Teacher Should Be Without.

The number one message we learned from our time there was that all students can achieve at high levels. We should continuously set the bar high and challenge everyone to be better - teachers, students, parents and administrators.

We are extremely thankful for the opportunity to learn more about the Ron Clark Academy. Keep your eyes open for some state-of-the-art changes that will be implemented here at Worley! Ready or not...Here it comes!

Monday, March 26, 2012

STAAR Testing 2012...The time is now!

On Tuesday (3/27) and Wednesday (3/28), Worley Middle School students will take the newest State of Texas standardized test - the STAAR.

7th grade students will take Day 1 of the Writing Exam and 8th graders will take the math exam on Tuesday.

7th grade students will take Day 2 of the Writing Exam and 8th graders will take the reading exam on Wednesday.

On testing day:
1. All students will report to their advisory class at 8:45 am.
2. Students will either bring a sack lunch or purchase lunch from the school. No lunch deliveries will be made from outside lunch sources.
3. The building is closed to visitors on both testing days.
4. We will operate on a modified daily schedule after testing on Tuesday and Wednesday. Students will attend periods 1-4 on Tuesday and 5-8 on Wednesday.

In order for students to give 100% effort on this week's tests, they must:
-Eat a healthy, balanced breakfast each morning and dinner each night
-Get at least 8 hours of sleep
-Stay focused and confident
-Be reminded to read each question carefully. Don't anticipate what you think the questions are asking. Read the questions completely. STAAR questions - unlike TAKS questions- usually involve more than one step.

Happy Testing! Remember, Worley students are the BEST and the BRIGHTEST!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Celebrating History: RWMS Black History Program 2012

To Parents, Students and the Mansfield Community:

You are invited to attend our Black History Program on Tuesday, Feb 21st at 6:00 pm. The program will take place in the Worley cafeteria.

Our students and staff members have worked for almost two months preparing for this showcase of talent. From song to dance to fashion and politics, African Americans have had a profound impact on the world. Our students have come together to honor those achievements and celebrate the history of our nation.

Kudos to Coach Phillips, Coach Stewart, Mr. Cumby, Ms. Washington, Mr. Addison, and Mr. Sells for working with our students to prepare for this night. It has taken a huge amount of their own personal time to ensure that our students are given the opportunity to participate in such an event.

We hope to see you here Tuesday evening!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

2012-13 Registration...Is it time already??

Hello Worley Tigers!

It is time to start thinking about next year's course selections. What can my student take? What should my student take?

Please take a few minutes to review the MISD Middle School Course Guide to familiarize yourself with our course offerings. One major change for the 2012-13 7th grade class is that we will no longer be offering the Language Explorations course as an elective.

When selecting classes for your student, please keep in mind the following thoughts:

-Pre-AP courses are rigorous and intense.

These courses generally require more time for homework and operate at a much faster pace than the regular 7th or 8th grade on level course. We suggest that students only enroll in 2 Pre-AP courses during their 7th grade year.

Why? 7th grade is a huge transition for students from the elementary instructional model to the secondary instructional model. Additionally, students are introduced to new activities that demand a lot of their time such as Athletics, Band and Choir. Students learn right away how to juggle their academic learning time during the school day with after school extracurricular activities. Getting homework done and attempting to have a family or social life can be a little overwhelming.

-Our kids are students first. Extracurricular activities are secondary to every student's academic progress.

-Our school's master schedule is built on student course requests. Teachers are assigned a daily schedule based upon the requests of all 930 of our students. There will be a deadline for any schedule changes to be made. Please make sure you select courses for your student that they are truly interested in taking. Also, don't forget to provide the counselors with alternative choices for electives. It helps make their year - and your year - go smoother.

-As an 8th grader, your student has the opportunity to earn high school credit. 8th graders can take Health, Speech, Algebra I, Spanish I or Gateway to Technology. What an incredible opportunity our students have to get a jump start on their high school career.

Overall, we hope that this proves to be an exciting time for your student. Learning how to be a lifelong learner is an important skill to master in today's global society. Selecting the appropriate classes for your learner is an integral step in becoming a successful secondary student.

Monday, January 30, 2012

STAAR Night @ Worley is Thursday, Feb 2nd

Everyone is invited to come out and receive information about the spring math and science STAAR exams on Thursday, February 2nd from 6-8 pm.

Our teachers will be hosting two (2) twenty minute information sessions for parents and students. In the cafeteria, parents and students can participate in several hands-on self-guided math & science games. And outside, the Fort Worth Astronomical Society will have telescopes set up for a Star party!

We hope everyone has the opportunity to stop by and see all the fun we have planned!

Here's the schedule for the night:

6:00 – 6:20 pm   Math STAAR Information Session
6:30 – 6:50 pm   Science STAAR Information Session
7:00 – 7:20 pm   Math STAAR Session(repeat of 6:00 session)
7:30 – 7:50 pm   Science STAAR Session(repeat of 6:30 session)

6:00 – 8:00 pm   Cafeteria Hands On Math and Science Activities
                             Outside Star Party with FWAS