HIll Country Middle School



November 17, 2017


Veterans Day Celebration


What an amazing assembly we had last Friday honoring our Veterans! The band, choir, orchestra, Boy and Girl Scouts and our Hill Country Players all took part in making  this ceremony spectacular. We were truly honored to have our guest speaker Lt. Col. Joseph Kopser join us. His message to the students was great! One awesome takeaway for the students was his phrase, "People will be what they can see." Additionally, he encouraged students to surround themselves with positive influences. 


A huge thank you to Chris Smith, our parent volunteer who helped organize the whole celebration. Without her, we could not have pulled this off. I also want to thank Julie Ott who put together the amazing video tribute to our veterans. This can be viewed on our webpage if you did not get to see it.  Kim Carr and Chris Smith created a fabulous honor wall of veterans on the bulletin board in the main hallway.  Thank you to all 



Academic UIL Time!!!


One of the great things about Hill Country is all the various ways students can become a part of different things. We are gearing up to start our UIL Academic Teams who will prepare for an academic competition in March. This past week students signed up in Advisory for areas they would be interested in which to compete. The coaches of the various teams will then be contacting interested students about tryouts. Sixth graders will have an informational meeting on Monday November 20, about what Academic UIL is and how it works. This will be a great opportunity for them to learn about the various competitions and to ask questions. We have an informational UIL website that I encourage you to visit.  http://hcmsboyd.weebly.com/academic-uil.html


This lists all the types of competition and the coaches for each area. Please feel free to contact any of them with questions you may have. 



Such Talent!!!!!


This week our Hill Country Players and Tech Design students wowed us with their performance of Inconceivable. It was so much fun to see the amazing costumes, the creative acting and dancing, and the large amount of students who were a part of this production. The students and teachers put in many hours of practice, and the entire student body got to enjoy the production. A huge thank you to our amazing drama teachers, Ms. Pam Friday and Ms. Sarah Yurko. 



HCMS very own eight-grade art student, Paige Meakin, created two masterful acrylic paintings for Austin Community College (ACC). Her two paintings will be reviewed by famous artist, Amado Peña. Mr. Peña will choose artwork created by Austin students to display as part of a permanent installation mural in the main entrance of the ACC Highland Campus! The installation mural represents academia visually; Paige chose to represent music. Paige is seen in this photograph with Nicole DiMucci, a representative with ACC. Let's all wish Paige the very best!


After Gilbert Tuhabonye's inspiring keynote at this year's Fit Fest, there has been an overwhelming desire from students and parents to support the Gazelle Foundation and show solidarity for our friends in Burundi. In response, our librarian Mrs. Schubert, NJHS, and Student Council, have organized an HCMS "Walk for the Water" event to be held on Tuesday, November 21 during Advisory. By donating at least $5, students will receive a ticket to walk the track. They will also have the opportunity to carry a 30 lb water jug as they walk to represent what those in Burundi carry each day. Additionally, donations of $30 or more, which will provide clean drinking water to one Burundian for a lifetime, will receive a

t-shirt. Students can make a donation for a ticket to the "Walk for the Water" event during all three lunches or in the library at any time.  


The Book Fair is Coming!

Nov 27 - Dec 1

Students will be coming with their LA classes:

6th: Monday
7th: Tuesday
8th: Wednesday
Thursday: Open all day
Friday: close at 11am

We take cash, cc, & checks "HCMS Library"
You can also shop online @ https://goo.gl/yHCknv

BOOK DONATIONS: We have also adopted the students at Metz Elementary School.
Our goal is to purchase a book for each student and deliver it to them for the holidays.

Please consider contributing by sending your student with an extra $5-$10 (or more) to purchase a book for a student at Metz. Watch this video for more info: https://goo.gl/nBKVeC
'Tis the season for giving!

You can learn more about some of the books featured here: http://www.scholastic.com/bookfairs/2017-fall-ms-video

Donate old iPhones and cords to the Library!!


The Cougar Scoreboard

To keep up with Cougar Athletes in action visit https://twitter.com/HCMS_Athletics



          Girls Basketball vs Sycamore Springs


7th Grade Teams

Red   38-22

Blue   24-23

8th Grade Teams

Red   40-31

Blue  24-30

            Boys Basketball vs Sycamore Springs



7th Grade Teams

Red   63-23

Blue  25-21

8th Grade Teams

Red   68-48

Blue  45-21


The WHS Robotics Team Appreciate (2468) is hosting an ice cream social for girls of all ages in the district who are interested learning more about participating in robotics and STEM activities! 


WHAT: Girls in STEM Ice Cream Social, hosted by students on the WHS Robotics Team Appreciate 2468

WHO: All elementary, middle, and high school girls in Eanes ISD are invited! (Parents too!)

WHEN: Friday November 17, 2017 at 5 pm

WHERE: Westlake High School "commons" area (the open area right as you come in the front doors of the high school)

PARKING: Park across the street in the lot by the WHS tennis courts  

RSVP: Please rsvp by clicking on the link below (but latecomers welcome too if your plans change--this is casual and fun!) 


https://goo.gl/forms/XtAe81Jkc 7CZnDyw2

Ice cream has been generously donated for this event by Amy's Ice Cream. 

The girls will get to meet and talk to female STEM professionals, Team 2468 alumni, mentors, and fellow students. This is a great opportunity for them to meet girls in the high school robotics program as well as other elementary and middle school girls who might also be thinking of getting involved! 


If you have any questions, please email Cristina Salas at monarchaustin@gmail.com.

Hope to see your school's girls there--and feel free forward this email to others who might be interested! I sent the information to all of the EISD elementary and middle school families we know of through WESTA, but I'm sure there are many we've missed.


Sally Brainard





Don't all Cougar Families just love a WIN/WIN? Well, we've got one for you! You get perfectly fitting clothes, while saving 15% AND 10% of your bill is donated back to our school, our children. You want in? Read this week's newsletter to find out when and where!



 View Cougar Club Newsletter





Friday - November 17, 2017
All day
Saturday - November 18, 2017
All day
Monday - November 20, 2017
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
4:15 PM - 8:00 PM
4:15 PM - 8:00 PM
Tuesday - November 21, 2017
All day
Wednesday - November 22, 2017
All day
Thursday - November 23, 2017
All day
Friday - November 24, 2017
All day
Monday - November 27, 2017
All day
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM


Self-Awareness and Self-Management

EISD has chosen to highlight self-awareness and self-management as our SEL focus for the second nine weeks.

SELF-AWARENESS: There is a growing body of evidence suggesting “that mindful practice could be beneficial to teens”. Being mindful is part of being self-aware. Educating teens about the mindfulness research and the benefits of mindfulness is a way to support teens in developing their own mindful practice. “Students who meditate before an exam perform better than students who do not”, and “mindfulness-based interventions have been demonstrated to reduce the symptoms of anxiety, stress, and depression.”  In order to learn other strategies to on how to encourage your teen to be mindful read “Teaching Mindfulness to Teenagers: 5 Ways to Get Started.

SELF-MANAGEMENT: Parents and staff members had the opportunity to hear Jessica Lahey speak at the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year. Jessica highlighted three points: autonomy, competence and connection. As caring supportive parents, we need to encourage our children to be autonomous and independent and try not to control their thoughts and actions. Children build competence through practice and experience. Contributing to household chores builds competence. Viewing failures as learning opportunities allows our children to learn from their mistakes. Loving your child for all their strengths and weaknesses and accepting them for who they are builds connection. Building autonomy, competence, and connection with our kids develops self-reliant, competent and resilient adults.

The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed by Jessica Lahey.

In Praise of Mediocre Kids” is another article that supports Jessica Lahey’s message of building autonomous, independent kids by not “pushing” our kids and trusting they will find their own way.



1300 Walsh Tarlton, Austin, Texas 78746


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