Tomball Intermediate School

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I am so excited to be starting my second year at Tomball Intermediate.  I'm ready to make this the best year ever! 
 
I graduated from Southeastern Oklahoma State University in 2012 with my Bachelor's of Science in Elementary Education.  I am a certified generalist for grades K-6 and have my ESL supplemental certification. I am also certified specifically in English, Reading, and Social Studies for grades 4-8.  I grew up in a family of teachers, so I was destined to spend my career in the classroom!
 
I am originally from the small town of Whitewright, TX- around fifty miles north of Dallas.  My husband and I moved here from Dallas last year to be closer to his family.  A few of my favorite things are books, sushi, shopping, movie theatre popcorn, and writing.
 
I believe that the key to my students' success in my classroom is constant communication between school and home.  Please feel free to e-mail, call, or make an appointment to meet during my conference time.
 
Contact Information
Phone: (903) 815-6572
School e-mail: markarush@tomballisd.net
Personal e-mail: markarushteach@gmail.com
 

Recent Posts

Happy Friday!

I just wanted to share some reminders of some important dates coming up!
 
May 5- Turn in STAAR Synonyms card
May 8- Math STAAR
May 9- Reading STAAR
May 12- Last day to take AR tests/Library books due!
May 6- Fine Arts Festival
May 19- Adventures in Life (Career Week)
May 26- Field Day!
May 27- TIS Choir to perform at Astros game!
May 30- Talent Show!
May 31- Social
June 1- Step Up Ceremony/Early Release @11:48
 
This semester is going by SO quickly!  Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns!

Vocabulary Update

Good afternoon!
 
I just wanted to update everyone on how we will be doing vocabulary for the rest of the year.  Because STAAR season is upon us, we will be focusing on STAAR/test vocabulary rather than Knowsys vocabulary.  I believe this will be most beneficial as we prepare for the big test in May!  I have added a STAAR Vocabulary page to the site where you can find the words and definitions.
 
Thank you all for your continued support.

Digital Autobiography

Happy Friday!
 
We have begun our digital autobiography project and I just wanted to share a few guidelines and expectations we've put in place.
 
-10 slides minimum
-20 personal pictures minimum
-use correct punctuation and spelling
 

Slide 1- Name, origin

Slide 2- Birth- date and place

Slide 3- Family

Slide 4- Hobbies

Slide 5- Accomplishments

Slide 6- Goals

Slide 7- Personal Narrative

Slide 8- Favorites

Slide 9- Cool Facts

Slide 10- In 10 years…
 
I've told the students that they can bring their pictures to school and I can help put them into digital format. They could also use a flash drive or they can e-mail the pictures to their school e-mail address (lunch#@elem.tomballschools.net).
 
Let me know if you have any questions or concerns!
 

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone is having a fabulous October!
 
We are going to carry over this week's Knowsys words into next week since most of this week was dedicated to our Checkpoint and next week is a short week.  Therefore, our next quiz will be October 24.
 
The first grading period ended today.  Report cards will be going home soon!
 
Please be sure our kiddos are reading at home.  This is extremely vital to their success in becoming better readers!  
 
Remember, Monday is a student holiday!  Class will be back in session Tuesday, Oct. 18!
 
Thank you all for your continued support! :)

Time flies!

Time is seriously flying in 6th grade reading!  I hope everyone's year is going smoothly so far!  I wanted to touch base with everyone about a few things:
 
My room is open every morning (except Wednesdays) for tutoring.  The students use this time to study their Knowsys words, catch up on notes, ask any questions they may have about lessons, etc.  I'm here for whatever they need!
 
I'm making a few changes to how we'll be doing our Knowsys words.  Instead of giving the students the whole list every week, I'm going to choose five that I feel are the most beneficial and add some additional STAAR vocabulary words that I think will be helpful when we take assessments.  The vocabulary on the STAAR test can be challenging, so I'm hoping that in doing this, the students will be very prepared!
 
I will be sending home a permission form for the program we will be using in class to monitor behavior, incorporate activities on technology, and reward the students for great work, positive behavior, grades, etc.  The program is called ClassCraft.  The kids have loved it so far!  I feel like it will be a great motivator for them this year! :)
 
Thank you all so much for your continued support!  Always feel free to reach out if you ever have any questions or concerns! 

Class of 2023!

I cannot believe the 2016-2017 school year is finally upon us!  
 
I am so excited to be starting a new year with the class of 2023!  We are going to have an amazing year full of reading new books, setting and achieving goals, and making memories as a team!  
 
Please never hesitate to call or e-mail me with any questions or concerns that may arise throughout the year! 
 
To join my Remind 101 group, text @a4a88 to the number 81010.  :)

Last Day

As a teacher, we have about nine months to make a difference.  We have nine months to earn and maintain our students' trust, show growth academically, create and maintain a positive learning environment, and make a million memories along the way.  I'd say this has been a pretty successful year with these kids.  I love each and every one of them and feel so blessed to have had the opportunity to be a part of their academic journey. Remember I'm here if you need anything at all!
 
So to the class of 2022, stay awesome and good luck in junior high!  

:(

Reflecting back on this year, I cannot believe how far we have come!  I can't believe we are so close to the end.  I am genuinely going to miss these kids, but I know they are destined for great things in their future!
 
With all of the craziness the end of the year brings, I just wanted to remind everyone of some important events coming up:
 
Field Day- Friday, May 27
Homeroom parties from 10-11:15
 
Locker Clean-Out- Thursday, May 26- Friday, May 27
Everything must go!
 
Memorial Day- Monday, May 30
NO SCHOOL!
 
Talent Show- Tuesday, May 31

6th grade choir performs at the beginning of both shows
6th grade talent show:  8:15- 10:15 am.

5th grade talent show:  12:00-2:00 pm.

Social- Wednesday, June 1
12:45-2:30

Step Up Awards Ceremony- Thursday, June 2
9:00 AM in auditorium

Half-Day- Friday, June 3
Dismissal at 11:40

Library Books

All library books are due this Friday, May 13!  The students should know if they have books that need to be turned in.  Thanks! :)

4 More School Days!

STAAR is quickly approaching and our 6th graders have been working hard to prepare!  Be sure the kiddos get lots of rest and have a nutritious breakfast!
 
This week, we're having our Palooza where the students go around to the different ELA teachers and practice on specific skills.  I love how it's getting the kids moving around and exposing them to other teaching styles that may be beneficial for them!
 
Here are a few dates to mark on your calendars:
Choir Festival (make-up)- Monday, May 16
Adventures in Life- Friday, May 20
May 26-27- Locker clean-out
May 31- Talent show 8:15-10:15 AM
June 1- Social 12:45-2:30 PM
June 2- Step-Up Ceremony 9:00 AM
 
Let me know if you have any questions!  Thanks again for all you do! :)

Tuesday Update!

On Thursday, we will be taking our next checkpoint of Testing Strategies.  We have been working extremely hard in class in preparation of our upcoming STAAR Test.  Our students have been practicing different testing strategies to use that will help in comprehending not only the text, but also the questions.  
 
We have 9 school days until the STAAR Test!  It will be here before we know it!  Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. :)

Moby Max

We are excited to implement a new web-based curriculum called Moby Max in our classroom.  Moby Max is tailored to your child's individual needs, and I think you will be very impressed by how fast your child will excel while using Moby.  Moby's features include:
-placements tests that accurately identify where your child excels, and where his or her "missing skills" are
-targeted instruction to "fill in" those missing skills
-systematic review sessions that ensure that your child retains 100% of what he or she has learned
Best of all, your child can assess Moby from your home computer at any time.
Log in steps for your student:
2.  enter user name- lunch number
               password- lunch number
Once logged in, your child will immediately start the lessons and begin improving his or her missing skills.
You can sign is a a parent as well by selecting "As a Parent" and entering your child's user name and password.

Quick Update!

I completely forgot to add this to my post on Friday...
 
We have a checkpoint this Wednesday- It is over poetry and non-fiction.
 
Have a great week!  

Already April!

I cannot believe April is upon us!  So much to do, so little time!
 
We are wrapping up our Research Projects and moving on to Testing Strategies.  Over the next few weeks, we will be focusing on testing strategies that will help prepare us for the STAAR test.  We are going to work on analyzing the questions, figuring out unfamiliar words, tracking our thinking, and going back to prove our answers.  I am hoping this will decrease our stress levels as the big test approaches!  The STAAR dates are May 9th (Math) and May 10th (Reading)- It will be here before we know it!
 
As we head into our hectic spring schedules, please remember if you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me via email, phone, text, pigeon- whatever is best for you! 
 
 

Welcome back!

I hope everyone had an awesome spring break!  It's hard to believe we're on the last leg of this school year!
 
We have been working hard on our Research Projects in class.  The official due date for these is Friday, April 1st.  The students know that they are required to present a Google Slides presentation and are welcome to bring in anything else they want to use to engage their audience- such as posters, props, activities, etc.  Please remember, if any portion of the project is plagiarized, that student will receive a zero.  This is a major grade!
 
Quick reminder- Our school Bunny Run is this Thursday during the students' Fine Arts time.
 
Have a wonderful week and Happy Easter!