Monday, March 19, 2018

Bear PTA News - March 19, 2018

Welcome back to school! It’s time to get to work on the last quarter of the school year!

Spring has sprung, and it is a great time to get to get DIRT-y in our garden. Come hang out with Ashleigh Livingston this Saturday, March 24 at 9:30 a.m. as she gives a brief educational talk for the kids on SOIL! Then we will spend a little time working in the garden. We really need our Papa Bears to help us install a new greenhouse. The hours are 9:30 - 11 a.m.

Join us for our next PTA Meeting on Tuesday, March 27 at 6:00 p.m. in the Bear Cafeteria. We will be showcasing some of the great activities at Bear and serving a yummy hot dog supper! Reservations aren’t required but would be helpful. A notice will be coming home later this week.

The PTA recently paid to have the blacktop resurfaced on the basketball court. It looks awesome and is a much-improved space for our children to play. Be sure to check it out!

The Specialist Spotlight this month is our musically magnificent Ms. Fell! Ms. Fell has requested Amazon Gift Cards, Hand sanitizer, Incentives for Treasure Box (CANDY!), Blank CD/DVD-RWs, CD sleeves, Stage tape/electrical tape, and Swiffer Sweeper for keyboards. The deadline to get things to Ms. Fell is April 13th. Be sure to have your child sign the log so that we can put his or her name into a drawing for a prize!

Mark your calendars for our next Spirit Night on April 19 at Bruster’s on Carter Hill Road.

Buy your Bear Exploration Center yearbook online for only $22.00! Order by March 31, 2018. To purchase your yearbook go to: and use order number: 1875.

The Pre-Paid School Supplies order form will be sent home in April. PTA Volunteers carefully shop all year-long and use discounts so that every student and teacher has everything they need on the first day of school at the lowest possible cost. Awesome job, School Supply Team! We appreciate you!

We are so proud of all of the children who participated in the Reflections Art contest. Bear had THREE students who were recognized at the state level. Congratulations, Olivia, Melody and Chandler! We had a large number of our students who were recognized at the county competition too.

State Reflections Winners

Visual Arts – Intermediate
3rd – Olivia Hoit

Photography – Intermediate
1st – Melody Noriegal Leon

Dance – Intermediate
3rd – Chandler Davis

Montgomery County Council Reflections Winners

Visual Arts – Primary (Grades K-2)
1st – Sarah Cate Gulsby
2nd – Audrey Kim

Visual Arts – Intermediate (Grades 3-5)
1st – Jennifer Stanton

Photography – Primary
2nd – Jackson Sexton

Photography – Intermediate
1st – Melody Noriegal Leon
3rd (tie) – Ellis O’Connor
3rd (tie) – Hannah Morris

Literature – Intermediate
1st – Ana Clark
3rd – Mason Haten

Dance – Intermediate
1st – Anna Gleason
2nd – Cameron Norred
3rd – Chandler Davis

Film – Intermediate
2nd (tie) – Lily Baker

Music – Intermediate
1st - Grace Jackson
2nd (tie) – Jayden Whiting
2nd (tie) – Ariyana Simon

Monday, February 5, 2018

Bear News - February 5, 2018

Happy February, Bear Parents!

It’s that time of year when paper supply starts to dwindle… let’s get those teachers and specialists stocked up again. Which class will bring in the most? Remember that colored reams count double.

Thank you to all the students who brought in school supplies for Mrs. Sealy: Noah Costa, Donavon Patton, Bryson Lazenby, Rhett Lazenby, Dakota Hernandez, Walter Collier, McKenzie Craymer, Matthew Craymer, Dylan Hines, Apollo Avezzano, Carson Shambray, Natalie Ulmet, Olivia Patrick, Jackson Sexton, Addison Sexton, Korey Thomas, McKenzie Kim, Madison Preston, and Daliah Crow. You guys are ROCK STARS!

The winner of the drawing for January is OLIVIA PATRICK! She won a Bear Buck and Nancy’s Italian Ice.

The Specialist Spotlight for February is our school librarian, MRS. HOULDITCH. Mrs. Houlditch has lots of goodies on her wish list for you to choose from. If your child brings in one of these items, make sure that he or she signs the log so that they will eligible for the drawing at the end of the month: 
  • Pencils
  • Pens
  • Crayons
  • Books
  • Swiffer Duster
  • Tape 

The Family Dance is this Friday night from 6-8 p.m. You can purchase tickets in advance or at the door. Please turn in ticket requests as soon as possible. We’re going to have a YEE-HAW good time! Family Dance tip – It gets mighty HOT in the cafeteria. Dress yourself and the little buckaroos accordingly!

For every 50 Box Tops a child turns in, he or she can earn a Bear Buck (value - $1) at the school supply cart or the Book Fair. Turn in your Box Tops by Friday, February 16 to get your Bear Buck before the Book Fair.

One of the most helpful volunteer opportunities that we have as PTA parents is making copies for our teachers. When teachers are freed from the copy machine, they can spend more time in the classroom. We need additional helpers to get us to the end of the year. Do you have 2-3 hours to donate to our teachers once or twice a month? Please contact Aimee Bentley.

The Book Fair will be held February, 26-March 2 in the Library. Pastries for Parents will be held Tuesday, February 27 from 7:30 – 8:30. Come for the books… stay for the G&S Doughnuts! If you're interested in volunteering, contact Shana Mosby.
Upcoming Dates
Paper Drive – February 5-9
Family Dance – Friday, February 9
Science Night – Thursday, February 22
Book Fair – February 26 – March 2
Pastries for Parents – February 27
G.LO.W. (Lunch for Teachers) – February 28
Spirit Night – March 2

Monday, January 29, 2018

Bear News - January 29, 2018

Boot, Scoot & Boogie
Join us for the Family Dance on Friday, February 9 from 6-8 in the Bear Cafeteria. Tickets are $4 - $12 max per family. Send cash or check in to school or pay online at the Bear PTA online storeWe ask that parents/grandparents will consider sending single-serving desserts or small bottled waters. 

Paper Drive
The PTA is holding our annual Paper Drive February 5-9. Which class will bring in the most paper? Paper Drive details will be sent home soon.

Book Fair
Bear will host a Book Fair the week of February 26 – March 2. The Book Fair introduces kids to new books and raises money for our library.  “Pastries for Parents” will be on Tuesday, February 27 from 7:30-8:30 a.m. Don’t forget… Bear Bucks can be used at the Book Fair!

Spirit Night
Come out and support Bear on Friday, February 2 at Cici’s Pizza Buffet on Ann Street from 4:00-9:00 p.m.

Specialist Spotlight
Don’t forget about Mrs. Sealy – our January Specialist Spotlight.

You can help Mrs. Sealy maintain her classroom by bringing in the following supplies:
  • Gift certificates to pet stores
  • Paper plates
  • Crayons
  • Colored pencils
  • Large or small rubber bands
  • Aluminum foil
  • Resealable bags - sandwich, pint (freezer), quart(freezer)
  • Antibacterial wipes
  • Paper towels
  • Large or small paper clips

If your child brings in an item for Mrs. Sealy, please have him or her sign the log. All children who bring in items by January 31 will be entered into a drawing for a prize.

Yearbooks will be available online. Hopefully, your family received a postcard with instructions on how to order. Their website is currently under maintenance but hopefully will be up and running soon. – school code 1875

Science Night
Mark your calendars for Science Night – Thursday, February 22!

Magnet Tours
The last public tours will be given at Bear this Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (February 1).

Polite Reminder
Parents – please do not park in the parking spots that are marked “RESERVED” in front of the school. These two highly desirable parking spots were “purchased” in an auction that raised money for the PTA. Please make sure that these parking spaces are available to these “highest bidders” at all times for the rest of the school year.

Upcoming Dates
Spirit Night – Friday, February 2
Paper Drive – February 5-9
Family Dance – Friday, February 9
Science Night – Thursday, February 22
Book Fair – February 26 – March 2

Friday, January 5, 2018

Bear News - January 5, 2018

Happy New Year, Parents and Teachers!

PTA Meeting
Join us for our first 2018 PTA Meeting this Tuesday, January 9 at 6:00 p.m. The topic will be “The Middle School Experience: Perspectives from Pupils and Parents.” Are you and your student curious about the magnet middle school experience? We will hear from former Bear students who have attended Floyd and Baldwin and from their parents. Also, children who won awards in the Reflections art contest will be recognized and receive their cash prizes at this meeting.

January Spirit Night
Friday, January 12 from 3:30pm-9:00pm at Schlotzsky’s located at 5055 Carmichael Road.

Specialist Spotlight
One of our specialists who ALWAYS needs extra love to make her classroom the most interesting is Mrs. Sealy, our Science Lab specialist. Students have fun learning among the fish, worms, rabbits, chinchilla, a colorful parrot, and so on!

You can help Mrs. Sealy maintain her classroom by bringing in the following supplies:
  • Gift certificates to pet stores
  • Paper plates
  • Crayons
  • Colored pencils
  • Large or small rubber bands
  • Aluminum foil
  • Resealable bags - sandwich, pint (freezer), quart(freezer)
  • Antibacterial wipes
  • Paper towels
  • Large or small paper clips

If your child brings in an item for Mrs. Sealy, please have him or her sign the log. All children who bring in items in January for Mrs. Sealy will be entered into a drawing for a small prize.

Magnet Tours
Public tours will be given at Bear every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from January 9 through February 1. Please encourage your friends who are interested in Bear to come tour our school. As parents, we are the best ambassadors for our school.

Upcoming Dates
PTA Meeting – Tuesday, January 9
Spirit Night – Friday, January 12
Family Dance – Friday, February 9
Science Night – Thursday, February 22

Monday, November 6, 2017

Bear News - Nov. 6, 2017

PTA Meeting - November
The next PTA Meeting is Tuesday, November 14 at 6:00 p.m. Please make plans to join us!

Immediately following the PTA Meeting is the Book Swap and Character Costume Parade. The Book Swap is so much FUN! Use the form that was sent home to turn in up to 5 books. For every book that your child turns in, he or she can receive a book from the Swap. Fifth Graders swap five minutes before the other grades. Tickets will be sent home the day of the Book Swap. Deadline for turning in books is Monday, November 13. No preschool or activity books – books for ages 6-12 please.

All inventory of Bear Wear will be available for purchase at the PTA meeting. Come with your cash, check or charge!

Free Money
Way to GO, Partners!  We collected over 15,000 Box Tops from August to October.  The top classes for the month of October were:

Kindergarten -  Mrs. Barton
First Grade -  Mrs. Roy
Second Grade - Mrs. Scoggan
Third Grade  - Ms. Francis
Fourth Grade - Mrs. Marshall
Fifth Grade -  Ms. Forster

Bear Bucks for the months of November, December, and January will be distributed on January 11, 2017.

Specialist Spotlight
This month’s Specialist Spotlight is Mrs. Bonikowski, our talented art teacher. Mrs. Bonikowski has requested colored markers, electric pencil sharpeners (2 or 3), and black sharpies.  Mrs. Bonikowski can also use baby wipes, AA batteries and flash drives. The box to collect the items and the sign-in sheet for students is located in Mrs. Bonikowski’s room.

Special Thanks
Our first month of Specialist Spotlight was a big success for Mrs. Harrison. Thank you to the following students who brought in school supplies for our reading specialist… Jack Leathers, Natalie Ulmet, Zane ??, Sullivan Gamble, Kenneth Laneaux, and Fritz Peifer. The winner of the drawing - a Nancy’s Italian ice and a Bear Buck - is Zane! Unfortunately, we are not sure which Zane this is, but as soon as we figure it out, he will get his reward!

Spirit Night – November
Our next Spirit Night will be at Chappy’s - Peppertree location on Thursday, November 16 from 5:00-8:00 p.m.
Reflections Art Contest

Reflections entries are due Thursday, November 16. The theme is Within Reach - that is very important when entries are judged. For more information, visit Alabama PTA Reflections. For questions, email Mrs. Bonikowski or Kelley Phelps.

Please let us know if you would not like to receive our emails any longer. Thanks!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Bear News - Oct. 20, 2017

Jamari Williams
Funeral arrangements have been announced for Jamari. Saturday, October 21 at Mobile Heights Baptist Church at noon. Bear students who attend the funeral are asked to wear a navy Bear polo. It was Jamari's favorite shirt.

A celebration of Jamari's life, including a performance by his dance group, will be held tonight - Friday evening at the Bellingrath Community Center from 5:30-7:00. Jamari's mother, Monique Davis, invites all to come and remember Jamari fondly by sharing happy and funny stories about him.

G.E.M. Day Postponed
G.E.M. (Gardening Education Maintenance) Day for this Saturday has been cancelled so that students and parents can attend Jamari’s funeral. We will reschedule soon.

Bear Wear
Bear Wear orders are due today. The web store will be open until 5:00 p.m. tonight. Orders will be delivered in 2-3 weeks.

Fall Festival
Thank you to EVERYONE who came to the Fall Festival this year. It was so much fun! We raised lots of money for the PTA through ticket sales, raffle baskets, t-shirts, bake sale items, food sales, and sponsorships. A huge thank you to Traci Schell and Victoria Little for organizing a great afternoon. And thank you to all the parents, student volunteers, and grandparents who helped everything run so smoothly. It was an awesome team effort!

We still have some t-shirts available so contact Traci to inquire about sizes. FF t-shirts can be worn on Fridays.

Specialist Spotlight
Don’t forget to purchase something for our October’s specialist – Mrs. Harrison. So far, she hasn’t received ANYTHING. Don’t make her sad… bring in a used book for her today and don’t forget to sign the log so that your child might win the drawing.

Her wish list…
· New Books
· Used Books
· Rubber Bands
· Gallon Ziploc bags
· AA Batteries
· Office Depot Gift Cards (for ink)

Next week (October 23-27) is National Red Ribbon Week.
This is a week where children learn about the importance of being drug-free. To encourage our kids to make good choices, we have some fun spirit days planned.

MONDAY - I Pledge to be Drug Free
Wear your BLUE RIBBON SHIRT AND BLUE JEANS (or your uniform)

TUESDAY - “Red”-Y to Live a Drug Free Life

WEDNESDAY - Don’t Let Drugs Mix You Up

THURSDAY - These Paws Don’t Touch Drugs
Bring a small bag of dry puppy, dog, kitten, or cat food for the Montgomery Humane Society

FRIDAY - Give Drugs the Boot
Wear your 2017-2018 blue theme shirt (or other approved Friday shirts) and your FAVORITE BOOTS

DID YOU KNOW? Children of parents who talk to their teens regularly about drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs than those who don't, yet only a quarter of teens report having these conversations. Talk to your kids about drugs!

Reflections is a national PTA-sponsored arts competition. Students from around the country are asked to create original works of art in the categories of dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography and visual arts. Students can enter more than one category. The theme is VERY IMPORTANT!

The Bear PTA will give away CASH PRIZES for the winners (1st-3rd places) at our school. Cash prizes will be given out in all categories for entries from K-2 and Grades 3-5. We have had several of our students win awards at the county and state levels the last couple years. We hope to see some great pieces in November to maintain our reputation.

Reflections is a great program that allows our kids to express themselves by being creative! Please see the rules at Reflections Rules and/or email Kelley Phelps with questions. For more inspiration, watch this video .

DISCOUNT CARD FIELD TRIP - CHUCK E. CHEESE’S Field trip forms went home this past week for the Chuck E. Cheese’s field trip to reward our top sellers. If your child sold more than 25 discount cards, you should have received this form. If you have not, then please contact Traci Schell.

Friday, October 13, 2017

A Message from Principal Elizabeth Hill

October 13, 2017

A Message to the Bear Family

Our hearts are broken. It is with great sadness that I inform you of the loss of one of our fifth-grade students on Wednesday night. On Thursday morning, we made the difficult decision to inform our fourth- and fifth-grade students to prevent the spread of piecemeal information that they may have heard from other sources. Our counselor, Carlos Booker, informed those students that the young man had passed away, but given their young ages and out of sensitivity, did not give them additional details. Our students wrote letters and made cards for the student’s family, and we had counselors available to them from across the district. I also notified fourth- and fifth-grade parents by phone yesterday and have informed all parents today so you may decide whether it is appropriate to talk with your child this evening.

It is natural for children to have questions and fears. The following may be helpful:

  • Tell the truth. 
  • Allow your child to talk about his or her feelings. If this is the first loss your child has experienced, your child may not know how to respond and will be looking for your guidance. 
  • Affirm all expressions. It is okay to express feelings honestly. Tolerate the expressions rather than dismissing them or discouraging the expression of feelings. 
  • Encourage written expressions such as notes, letters, or drawings. 
  • Reaffirm that your child is safe and that your child is loved. 
  • Affirm that your child’s reaction is normal and you understand the way the child feels. 
  • Watch for signs of trouble such as aggression, anger, withdrawal, etc. 
  • Help the child return to as normal a routine as possible. 
In addition, if you feel that your child needs additional support, please call the school office at 284-8014.

A few words of caution regarding social media: We are aware of the rumors that are circulating and understand that many are struggling to understand why this happened to such a wonderful child. Do not believe everything you read, and out of respect for the family, please do not post rumors or speculation. We encourage you to post positive thoughts or memories and offer words of encouragement and support to the child’s family.

Most Sincerely,
Elizabeth R. Hill