Monday, October 7, 2013

Dyslexia Awareness Month

I am very lucky to be our 504 contact and get the chance to hear about all of our amazing kids that have different needs to be successful in school.  Here at BPE, students who are diagnosed with dyslexia typically come through the 504 program to help receive services and/or accommodations.  In the past 20 or so years, great strides have been made to help create specific programs to help students with this reading disability.  If you are interested in finding out more about dyslexia, please visit The International Dyslexia Association website or Scottish Rite website.

Below are two pieces of information that have come across my plate today about dyslexia and I wanted to share.  Enjoy.

Your Biggest Fan,

Mr. Fleming


How common is dyslexia? The IDA(International Dyslexia Association) writes that as many as 15-20% of the population has some symptoms of dyslexia. Dyslexia can affect people of all intellectual levels. Although dyslexia is a lifelong learning disability, many students prosper and go on to make important contributions to society. For additional statistics and information, read the IDA’s “Dyslexia Basics”.


Please join us for the national screening of the documentary, Dislecksia: The Movie on October 17th, at Cinema 14 –Round Rock (4401 N. IH 35 Suite 3000) at 7:00 pm.
The screening in honor of Dyslexia Awareness Month, celebrates Round Rock ISD’s participation with cities and towns across the nation in hosting the theatrical documentary, Dislecksia: The Movie, strengthening public recognition of dyslexia as a learning difference, not a learning disability.
The screening for Dislecksia: The Move is a united campaign led by Captured Time Productions and Area23a. Round Rock ISD is one of over 50 groups across the country who are participating in the campaign, using Dislecksia: The Movie to generate a community-based forum for sharing information and support. After the screening, a question and answer session will be held.
In Dislecksia: The Movie, filmmaker and fellow dyslexic Harvey Hubbell (founder of the Hubbell Difference Foundation) offers a first-hand approach to the complex, and often misunderstood nature of dyslexia, highlighting some of the condition’s most pressing issues in a manner that is just as inspiring as it is informative.
To purchase tickets for this event, go to and enter the zip code 78681.

A powerfully touching and entertaining documentary that mixes humor and perspective with insight and analysis, DISLECKSIA: THE MOVIE explores many of the misconceptions surrounding dyslexia, while underlining the need for stronger awareness, early identification and social change. No stranger to the condition, director Harvey Hubbell V explores dyslexia through a very human, personal lens, weaving his own lifelong experience, the research of scientists and the practice of educators, with the individual experiences of celebrities, politicians, and adults and children living with dyslexia. Intergenerational, multicultural and socio-economically diverse, DISLECKSIA: THE MOVIE presents a complete picture and the most current information on dyslexia, promotes positive messaging, explores the power of family and community and is the first film to offer an alternative perspective of dyslexia as a learning difference, rather than a disability.

Monday, September 30, 2013

The Leader In Me

You may have noticed a buzz in the air here at BPE.  Teachers and students are using language like...

  • Be Proactive
  • Begin with the End In Mind
  • Put First Things First
  • Think Win-Win
  • Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
  • Synergize
  • Sharpen the Saw

This language and principles come from The Leader In Me.  Our staff started to take the lessons of the "7 Habits of Happy Kids"and apply them to everyday work and life here at school.  Teachers read "The Leader In Me" book this past summer to prepare for this journey.  As the year continues, our staff will continue to receive training so that they can learn more and apply these leadership skills in conjunction with the daily curriculum and activities.  It will take almost three years before we can apply to be a Lighthouse School through The Leader In Me process.

If you are wanting more info, plan on reading the "7 Habits of Happy Kids" to get the gist of these skills.  I recommend "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families" because you can see how these habits also work within the family entity.  I read this book and the lessons have helped me as father and husband in my own life.


Your Biggest Fan,

Mr. Fleming

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Settling In For a New School Year

I love seeing teachers and students come back to a new school year.  Everyone always looks so bright eyed and bushy tailed because of summer break.  Time away from school truly revitalizes students, teachers and parents.  Students also come back with a level of excitement because they can see friends that they have missed connecting with for 3 months.  There is also a sense of adventure because this is a "New" grade level to experience. This is truly the most exciting and high point of the school year (a close second is the last week of school because of everyone celebrating the successes of the year.)
With all of that being said, we are now into week 5 of the school year and we all are in a groove (morning routines, class schedules, etc.)  The newness of the school year has worn off because it is no longer New in the students' and teachers' eyes.  I relate it to the honeymoon being over because all people involved are becoming more comfortable with one another like a family.  Expectations are firmly set by now and can cause students to start to have anxiety and/or rebellious type behaviors.  You probably are thinking what can I do to help... keep reading so you can keep your routines going smoothly without creating RUTS (problems).
As with all things that start to get into a groove, sooner or later the grooves can turn into ruts.  Ruts feel good because they are very predictable.  The problem with a rut is that over time you will eventually get stuck and not know how to get out of it.  These are my suggestions to parents, teachers and students to address possible ruts during the school year:

  1. Go to the source of the "Rut".  Teachers and parents truly appreciate direct communication with one another.  Realize by approaching the "Rut" with an open mind allows for all members to be willing to share the issue and seek first to understand so that the problem can be understood.
  2. Be willing to approach a "Rut" with open conversation.  This means speak from your heart on what is going on and how is affecting the child.  If one side comes in with accusatory language, this may shut the conversation down before it even starts.
  3. If possible, have a solution to the "Rut" so that it can be shared in the conversation while brainstorming ideas to help.  This will require that all sides talking are able to agree to the solution, or a Win-Win.
  4. Realize the best plans don't always go the way they should.  Mistakes happen, variables change, a cold front moves in (not really), but you get the picture.  Be willing to talk about what happens when you try a solution so that you can refine the solution to maximize the results.
  5. When all else fails, be willing to ask for help.  Our campus and community is filled with great resources and people who are willing to problem solve with you.  See if other teachers or staff have any suggestions.  Talk with other parents, they may have been through similar Ruts.

Hopefully you can see my point when addressing "Ruts" during a school year... always seek quality communication and be willing to be a team that works together.  As the old saying goes "We all are capable of doing great things, but we can be so much more when we work together."

Your Biggest Fan,

Mr. Fleming

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Back to School Safety Tips

Before I share my information about school safety tips, I would like to say to all my families and colleagues how amazing our Back to School Night was tonight.  There were so many smiling faces (I think parents had the most grins) at our campus that it was contagious.  That energy and enthusiasm was at record levels.
My entry tonight is about driver safety.  Our campus only has walkers, car riders or daycare to transport to and from school.  I am sharing content from an e-mail that I received about local law enforcement in Austin.  These are some tips that would benefit all in our community so that we have a safe and productive entry and dismissal process for all here at BPE.

Your Biggest Fan,

Mr. Fleming

Following content comes from Austin PD Department.  I want credit to go where credit is due.

Austin PD (Police Department)spacerpolice logo

Citizen Alert


APD to start Back to School Initiative Monday

On Monday, August 26, 2013, the beginning of a new school year for Austin area children starts. With over 97,000 children enrolled in Austin public and private schools, the Austin Police Department will conduct a Back to School traffic safety initiative Monday, August 26, 2013 through Friday, September 6, 2013. This will be the first of multiple school zone traffic safety initiatives that will continue throughout the school year.
The focus of this initiative will be on the safety of children and neighborhoods. These efforts will help provide a safe environment where children and parents can feel confident that they can travel to and from school in a safe manner.
During this initiative, officers will be focusing their enforcement efforts in Austin school zones; looking for drivers committing the following violations:
  • Speeding in school zones
  • Using wireless communication devices; including the use of any cell phone, with the exception of “hands-free,” for making calls, texting, emailing or messaging
  • Disregarding school crossing guards
  • Failing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks
  • Passing school buses while loading and unloading
  • Following too closely or any other aggressive driving behavior that may endanger children or parents
The Austin Police Department would like to remind drivers to:
  • Provide yourself with extra time when leaving to work or coming home in the afternoon. The beginning of the new school year always means more vehicles and pedestrians traveling on our roadways.
  • Buckle Up! Please make sure you and your children wear seatbelts whenever traveling in a vehicle. Remember, child passenger safety seats are required for children under eight years old or less than 4’9” tall. 
  • Put down that cell phone! In addition to the City’s ban on texting, the State of Texas prohibits the use of any wireless communication device while in a school zone unless the vehicle is stopped or unless you are using a “hands-free” device. 
  • Slow down and take the time to look again at intersections or anywhere children and parents are walking to and from school. Whether on foot, bike or bus, we want everyone to Arrive Alive! 

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Welcome To My First Blog Post

I am excited to start this year communicating with my BPE families, staff and students in RRISD.  As the year continues, I have a goal to grow this site to share current information about our focus... student learning and growth here at Blackland Prairie.  Please follow me here or on Twitter @MrFleming12.
Looking forward to a great year in 2013.

Your Biggest Fan,

Mr. Fleming