Update from Maplewood Admin, Special Areas, Counselor, Librarian, & Reading Specialist!

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Specials Team Zoom Schedule for Students! Join Us!

Moving forward the Special Areas Plus Team would like to continue to host grade level Zoom check-ins every other week with each grade level. Coming up this week (4/20-24) we’ll have the primary classes K, 1, 2 and next week (4/27-5/1) we’ll see the intermediate grade 3rd, 4th, & 5th. Our plan is to continue this pattern into the future so you can set these times on your calendar. The links to log-in to these zooms can be found on the Grade level BLEND page. Please do not share them on social media as we are trying to protect these meetings from outside intervention.

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Message from Ms. Jacobson, Maplewood Principal

Hello, Maplewood Mustangs! I sure miss seeing all of you! I’m sure, if you’re like me, you have been spending more time than ever before on a computer. I’m so glad to be able to see you sharing your reading, your thinking, your science learning, and all of your at-home work. I found myself really wanting to spend more time actually reading BOOKS this week, so I have tried to be sure to set aside time to just READ for enjoyment. There are so many great books and magazines I want to read and enjoy right now. I’m even doing some of my reading while sitting outside in the beautiful sunshiny weather we have had lately! What have you been reading lately? I hope you will find time to read great books and share them with your friends and family this week! Happy reading!

Your Very Proud Principal,

Ms. Jacobson


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Ms. L-A, Maplewood P. E. Teacher

Physical Education Update –

This week we’re continuing our Striking with Implements unit in our Physical Education at home. Make sure you get permission for the implements (tools) and objects (things you hit) as well as the space that you’re in to keep you and those around you safe. I’ve updated our Blend page with some challenges for you to try but after all that skill practice last week it’s time to start putting it into a game.

  • What can you do to modify the rules of Tennis or Badminton or Golf that allows you to play safely with what you have?
  • Or can you come up with your own game?
    • What will show that you have succeeded?
      • What are the things that make it easier or more difficult to adjust the game to the differing skill levels in your family?

Please keep sharing what your family is doing to be active at home and your striking with implements challenges. To add what you’re family is doing to be active to our PE padlet use this link to access it with the password Mustangs!. #AISDmovesAtHome You can add pictures or videos of your activities! Check out the PE Page on Blend to see what everyone is up to!

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Ms. Cervantes-Maplewood Art Teacher

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Share your talent, Maplewood artists! – PADLET post Challenge:

In honor of EARTH DAY (April 22), I’d love to see you make an Earth-Day artwork! I chose the ‘Create Land Art’ challenge this week and was inspired by the artist, Andy Goldsworthy. Remember you can choose any of the activities on the choice board on the art BLEND page. Don’t forget to add your work on our “Share your Talent” art padlet! If you’d like to try more #ArtForEarth ideas check out this site that has themes for each day!

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Andy Goldsworthy creates art out of NATURE! Every space he visits he uses the natural objects around him like rocks, twigs, leaves, and even ice to create his artwork! I visited one of his artworks in San Francisco called Wood Line. His art doesn’t last forever so he has to photograph his art to document it. Check out a short video of Goldsworthy working and talking about his process of making his land art here.

Mr. Hutson, Maplewood Music Teacher

Greetings Maplewood Musicians! Check out the music BLEND page listed on each grade level BLEND course page. At the bottom of the Music page you can see our Padlet where students post their music. Come share something you have been working on, either in a video or written directly onto the Padlet page.

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This week I looked at the Music choice board on the Blend Music page and clicked on Choice Board 8:Album for the young: The Wild Horseman” by Robert Schumann. Schumann wrote this particular piano song, along with many others, for his own children then titled the songs Album for the Young. This is just one of those songs. I’ll let you check it out and learn more on your own!

I also shared some more songs from the Maplewood Music classroom on the Blend Music page. The new playlist I added has songs from our Movement unit. These are some of the songs that we used to dance together in class. Share them with your house and get your house moving to music!

Be on the look out this week and I will post some of my own music onto our Padlet Page. I hope to see you all soon and I miss every single one of you.

-If you’d like to share ways you and your new learning community are sharing music at home I encourage you to go to the Music Padlet using the password “Mustangs!”to upload and share a video or write about ideas you might have tried in your new learning space.

Ms. Braziel, Maplewood Librarian

Hello! Happy Earth Month and Happy Poetry Month, Mustangs!

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This Wednesday, April 22, 2020 is the 50th anniversary of Earth Day celebrations. We WERE planning to have a big Earth Day event at Maplewood, but we obviously can’t do that this year. SO- we would love for YOU to share how YOU are celebrating our planet this Earth Day. Here is a link to our Maplewood Green Team’s padlet with ideas and a place for you to share. One thing we’d love to see is student-drawn pictures of the Earth posted in people’s windows so we can hunt for them on our walks.

I’ve also recorded some read-alouds of books that I think are great for celebrating nature, and I put together a group of Earth Day-focused e-books in MackinVIA. Check it all out in the Library section of your grade level BLEND course, which is available through the BLEND link in your child’s AISD portal. Oh- and as a little Poetry Month bonus: check out poetrygames.org! Last week, our reading specialist, Ms. Baker, mentioned syllables, which reminded me how much I enjoy reading and writing Haiku poetry, with 5 syllables on the first line, 7 syllables on the second line, and 5 syllables on the third line. So I visited poetrygames.org to explore their “Poetry Machine,” where I crafted a Haiku:

“Her Majesty, the Earth”

Queen of us all – HOME

Our Milky Way’s crown jewel

Precious Mother Earth

I am here to support you, so please feel free to email Amanda.Braziel@austinisd.org if you need help. 💖 Keep reading! I miss you all!

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Ms. Kirk, Maplewood School Counselor

For Kids: Hello, friends! Earth Day is this week, and it’s the perfect time to reflect on how connected and interdependent all living beings on Earth are to each other, and how all living creatures (plants, animals, humans) need care and love for one another-including caring for our Mother planet Earth! Check out pictures of New Delhi, India before our quarantine, and after. Since humans have slowed down in order to stay safe against the virus, they are driving less and creating less pollution that can damage our oceans and air. The Earth and the animals have been able to take a big, cleansing breath-phew!


Don’t forget to post pictures of all the ways you are Increasing the Peace!

I’ll be sharing parts of the. book, This Phenomenal Life” by Misha Blaise (Maplewood parent, author, and artist) in the Counselor Blend course over the next 2 weeks. This book beautifully explains how all living creatures on earth are interconnected, and the amazing ways we are connected with our Universe.


Since we haven’t been able to spend social and learning time together, we are reminded each and every day of how important our friendships and teacher/student relationships are-we imss each other! Humans depend on one another for comfort, laughter, support, listening ears, and helping hands. While we are away from those we care about, we can certainly send them loving and caring messages through our breath and thoughts. Our inhales are tiny particles, our exhales can be powerful waves of love; our inhales are about the “here and present”, our exhales go everywhere and transcend time. Take a moment to send loving wishes to those you miss-see the “Sending Kind Thoughts” link below. And, don’t forget to click above and add pictures of all the Peacemakers out there! You can reach me @ kelli.kirk@austinisd.org Mon-Fri.

Stay safe! I REALLY miss you all.❤️

Ms. Baker, Maplewood Reading Specialist

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Hi Mustangs-

I miss you! How was your day? I went outside and enjoyed the sun and also trying to drink lots of water to stay hydrated 😊

I wanted to share a game with you, Roll and Retell. This game is super fun and can be played after reading a fictional story. All you need is a story and one dice. If you don’t have a dice, you can use a spinner from another game or maybe pieces of paper (labeled 1-6) and pour them out of a cup. For example, if you roll or draw a 1, you will state what the story is mostly about. For an extension activity, you can write your answers in a writing journal or on a piece of paper. This is a fun and meaningful way to interact with a story.

Until next time, I’m sending lots of hugs and love. We are all in this together! ❤️

Ms. Baker

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Important Resources

AISD Learning at Home: https://sites.google.com/austinisd.org/aisd-learning-at-home

Meals Support: https://www.austinisd.org/covid19/meals

Food Bank Delivery: 512-972-5133

City of Austin Neighborhood Centers (some are providing meal delivery): 512-972-5133

*email Ms. Kirk (kelli.kirk@austinisd.org) if you need additional information re: food, rent, or utility support

Austin Diaper Bank: https://www.austindiapers.org/

Spectrum Internet Free for K-12 students: https://corporate.charter.com/newsroom/charter-to-offer-free-access-to-spectrum-broadband-and-wifi-for-60-days-for-new-K12-and-college-student-households-and-more

Unemployment: https://twc.texas.gov/jobseekers/unemployment-benefits-services   800-939-6631

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