Brandon Elementary: The Center for Excellence
"The mission of LISD is to educate and equip all students for success through exceptional learning experiences."
Enthusiasm, pride, and great respect were all evident in Brandon’s annual Black History Month Program held Tuesday, February 17. Student council president, Peyton Mathis, served as master of ceremonies, while Reverend Bettie Kennedy, guest speaker, provided a history of Juneteenth. Brandon students, under the direction of music teacher Lori Meadows performed a number of beautiful selections and a drum/chant performance. The Brandon Girlfriends Club performed a praise dance to “Dream Your Dreams” while dressed in costumes representing their future career goals. Third graders Chloe Camp and Sarah Thornhill provided of history of Professor W. H. Brandon, for whom Brandon Elementary is named, and Journey Thomas repeated his popular rendition of Martin Luther King’s, “I Have a Dream” speech. Joslyn Goffney, district oral reading champion, recited the much loved, Maya Angelou poem, “Still I Rise;” Camari Taylor delivered the well-known Gettysburg Address, and Gustavo Garcia presented the poem, “Once a Buffalo,” recognizing the contributions of the African American regiments of the U.S. 10th Cavalry. Many honored guests were on hand for the program, and the Brandon family very much appreciates their participation. Many thanks go out to all who helped make this program possible and to Dr. Walter for ensuring that this program, each year, is a poignant reminder of our history, demonstrating that WE ARE BRANDON!
The video below provides highlights of the program events.
Each December GT students make enrichment items for the zoo keepers to fill with treats as presents for the animals at the Ellen Trout Zoo. Students in grades 3-5, under the direction of Teresa Roe, make these items in the science lab. The pictures from the zoo's Facebook page are fantastic and show the animals investigating the brightly colored projects. Please click on the link below to enjoy these photographs:
Congratulations on a job well done to all of the Brandon students who participated in the LISD District UIL competition. An awards ceremony was held Thursday, December 18 at the Middle School Auditorium. A big thank you goes out to everyone who helped make this event possible. Pictured above are the Brandon students who placed in the various events academic events. The video below contains some pictures of the students at the awards ceremony and following at the Museum of East Texas and Grace Dunn Park.
Current and former Brandon Bears perform in The Nutcracker, representing the Academy of Gymnastics and Dance. Congratulations, girls, on an outstanding show!
Fifth grade academic social studies classes participated in a learning activity that resulted in giving back to the community. Mrs. Belcher, social studies teacher, initiated this effort at the beginning of the fall semester. Students from each of the homerooms collected quarters and brought them to school, placed them in the state books, and then located and colored the specific states on a US map. Congratulations to Ms. Scott’s homeroom for completing their book first. The money raised through this effort was donated to the humane society, a charity that Brandon Elementary proudly supports.
Fifth grade Brandon students participated in a Christmas Caroling field trip on Thursday, December 11. Students visited and sang Christmas carols for residents of Larkspur, Pinecrest, and The Meadows as well as for LISD employees at the administration building.
Brandon third grade HOSTS students were in for a real treat on Wednesday, December 10. School and community members, Mark Keith, Ella Kegler, Julie McReynolds, Brent Rich, and Allyson Langston, entertained the various classes with the beloved Christmas story, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas! Thank you to each of these enthusiastic volunteers for sharing their talents and time with our Brandon students.
Fourth Grade GT classes at Brandon conducted a science fair, held Thursday, December 4. The event was a huge success, with coverage by our local news. Sponsors of this event were Mrs. Barnett and Mrs. Usher, both fourth grade science and math teachers. Thank you to all those who supported this event. We look forward to continuing this worthwhile learning experience next year.
Approximately 100 Brandon students earned Accelerated Reader t-shirts this month for outstanding achievement in reading. Congratulations to all of these excellent readers, and keep up the great work!
Members of the Brandon PTK provided the faculty with a delicious and beautifully prepared Christmas breakfast on Thursday, December 4. Thank you so much for all you do to support the children, faculty, and staff of Brandon Elementary!!
Monday, December 1: Following the morning announcements, students, who are interested in participating, will pick up the spelling study list from Mrs. Taylor in Room 137.
Monday, December 8: The written spelling bee will take place in the cafeteria at 1:00 pm. No guests allowed, please. The top 25 spellers will be chosen from this test, and their names will be announced on Tuesday, December 9.
Tuesday, December 16: The public spelling bee will be conducted in the cafeteria at 1:15 pm. Guests and families are invited to attend. If you have any questions, please contact Cinda Taylor, Brandon Instructional Coach, or Dr. Walter, Brandon Principal.
Students who sold 15 or more items in the recent Big Kahuna Fundraiser for Brandon Elementary were rewarded with lunch at Cici's Pizza via a limo ride filled with music, fun, and excitement. Thank you to all students and parents who helped make this year's fundraiser a big success!
Former Brandon Bear and 2014 LHS graduate, Joshua Marcotte, visited Brandon Elementary and his former teacher, Cathey Friesen, on Friday, November 14. Marcotte recently completed basic training with the Marines and is beginning his service in the department of Intelligence. Marcotte visited with a class of fifth graders regarding the benefits of an education. His words were quite profound, as he stated, "Your education is the only thing someone can't take away from you!"
The annual Brandon Veterans Day program was held on Tuesday, November 11, 2014. Thank you to the many veterans who participated in this program. It was a pleasure and a privilege to have you as our guests on this special day. The program was organized by Brenda Walker, Brandon Counselor, and the Brandon Student Council. The program included the posting of colors, poetry readings, the President's proclamation, and several musical performances by Brandon students, under the direction of music teacher, Lori Meadows. Thank you, veterans, for your service to our country.
Congratulations to our Brandon students who were medal winners in the LISD Turkey Trot held at LHS on Friday, November 14. Students from all elementary schools in the district participated. Congratulations to all on an outstanding job!
Wednesday, November 12, was designated as Celebrity Reader Day at Brandon Elementary. The celebrity guests read to our students for approximately two hours, as they rotated through the campus classes and grade levels. Celebrities included a special guest from Romania, invited by one of our Brandon students, volunteer community members, LISD middle school principal, LISD school board member, Miss Teen Texas, and members of the football team, cheerleading squad, and drill team. Children were entertained with storybooks and biographical works, as well as an informative slideshow presentation on Romania. We would like to extend our thanks to the many who participated in this effort. The following individuals made this exciting day for children possible: Eric McCoy, Terry Mark, Trey Cumbie, Worth Gabriel, Victor Travis, Ghazala Khan, Tara Watson Watkins, Tom Paxon, Dennis and Joan Rankin, Kassidy Brown, Kristen Carr, Rev. Cindy Doran, Marcus Williams, Abby McCarty, Macy Moore, Flora Avant, Ella Kegler, Jeff McReynolds, and Allyson Langston.
HOSTS: Help One Student to Succeed
in Lufkin ISD's Panther Run
Monthly, during morning celebrations, students are recognized for AR achievement. When students reach specified point goals, they are presented with shirts. Students earning this reward will be allowed to wear their shirts on Mondays with standardized dress and Fridays with jeans if they choose. Congratulations to our October recipients, and we look forward to many more Brandon Bears earning t-shirts throughout the year!
Fifth grade GT students made Panther Paste while studying mixtures and solutions in the science lab with instruction from Brandon teacher, Teresa Roe. They invited Dr. Goffney, Mayor Brown, their school nurse, and several LISD principals to complete the consumer testing of their toothpaste product. This was a wonderful learning experience for the students and a lot of fun as well. Students enjoyed the school and community members who volunteered their time to use and critique their product and, again, would like to thank them for their participation.
Way to Go Awards for the Week of October 6!!
Lufkin High School students and Dr. Walter successfully encouraged Brandon students to participate in Homecoming Spirit Week!
STUDENT COUNCIL ELECTIONS
Congratulations to all Brandon fifth graders who participated in the student council elections for president and vice-president. We are pleased to announce that Peyton Mathis has been named Student Council President and that Helen Klare Keith and Journie Thomas were elected as Co-Vice Presidents. All students participating prepared and delivered exceptional speeches during a school-wide morning assembly on Wednesday, September 24, 2014. The additional outstanding candidates were Pierce Parks, Tangela Ross, Cierra Giles, Ci’Nya Berry, Fenley McCullough, Rohan Sohini, and Aidan Henson. We look forward to a wonderful year with our student council membership under the direction of these fine leaders.
From left to right, Helen Klare Keith, co-vice president, Peyton Mathis, president, and Journie Thomas, co-vice president. (See slideshow below.)
Brandon celebrated Grandparents Day on Friday, September 6 with an amazing number of grandparents and relatives participating in the event. Visitors enjoyed a delightful music program, refreshments, pictures with their grandchildren, and a record breaking book fair. Thank you to all the family members, staff, and volunteers that made this such a memorable day for our students.
The following students received the Way to Go Award for the week of September 1: Cathan Deason, Desirae Giles, Gracie New, and Paris Rains!! Way to go Brandon Bears!!
Brandon educators always want to recognize and show appreciation for positive character traits in students. In an effort to do this, children will be recognized throughout the school year for demonstrating good character, citizenship, and leadership. This week two students were recognized, Levi Ladden and Chandler Frankens!
Looking Forward to a Fabulous Year
Wednesday, August 20, 4:00-6:00 pm
Please join us and meet your child's teacher. Class rosters will be posted on our library windows. Welcome to a new year at Brandon!
Our summer reading program has begun! Please join us at Jones Park at 11:00 each Wendesday during June and July!
Lunch Will Be Served at Jones Park
- Free for all children 1 to 18
- Monday - Friday
- 11:30 am to 1:00 pm
- At the Pavilion across from Garrett Primary
- Lunch must be eaten at the park
Brandon students who earned more than 100 points in the Accelerated Reader program this year were rewarded with a party on Thursday, May 22. Students enjoyed basketball, skating, and games along with a pizza party. Congratulations to these dedicated students, all 121 of them!
On Friday, April 25, Brandon hosted our first Father Daughter Dance. A wonderful time was had by all who attended. We look forward to making this special event a regular tradition at Brandon.
To celebrate Cinco de Mayo, Brandon Elementary hosted a Chalupa Dinner for students and their families. This event was held in the evening on Monday, May 5. Those in attendance enjoyed a deliciuos dinner, prepared and served by Brandon staff, were entertained with a faculty talent show, and had the opportunity to visit Brandon's annual spring book fair.
In honor of Mothers Day, Brandon celebrated moms by hosting a Muffins for Moms before school on the morning of Thurday, May 8. This was a special time for our students and their mothers.
"Brandon Bears Educating Brandon Bears!"
Thank you to the following donors for your generous contributions:
Dr. Srinivasa Rao
Dr. Savitha Balakrishna
Mr. and Mrs. Peikert
Vikram and Sailaja Suraparaju
Sarah & Joe Murray in honor of "Erin Bonner"
Dr. Lila Cherry in memory of
Dr. P.A. Varghese & Mrs. Molly Varghese
Dr. Sunil Cherry in honor of Saehin Cherry
Joe E. Rich, Sr. in memory of John Bradford
Lorraine and Michael Dorman in honor of Clark, Mallory, & Evan Dorman
Joshua & Heather Resch in honor of Betty Harrison
Rebecca Hunt in honor of Cathey Friesen
More than 100 Brandon students ran in the Fun Run on Friday, April 25. The Fun Run was established to help raise funds for the Brandon Scholars Program, "Brandon Bears Educating Brandon Bears." Thank you to Mrs. Vann for coordinating this worthwhile and enjoyable event. The winners of the Fun Run are as follows:
3rd grade: 1st place- Charlie Deaton, 2nd place- Cailyn Crow
4th grade: 1st place- Carter Williams, 2nd place- Kolby Kovar
5th grade: 1st place- Jordan Moore, 2nd place- Mathew Gorman
5th Grade GT Classes Host Easter Egg Hunt
for Dunbar Kindergarten Students
Click on the link below to see more information on the Bridge to Brandon, an informational seminar, held April 30 and May 14, providing information on the transition from second to third grade.
BRIDGE to BRANDON
Brandon Bears Educating Brandon Bears!
Brandon Elementary is implementing a scholarship for seniors. If you are a former Brandon Bear and interested in applying, please click on the links below for guidelines and application.
In support of the Brandon Scholars Program, each Monday for the remainder of the school year will be designated as a jeans day. The cost to participate in "Monday Jeans Days" will be $2.00 each time. Students must wear standard dress code shirts with their jeans. All funds collected will go toward the scholarship program.
Good News Club
A celebration of Kanetra Loyd's life was held on the front lawn of Brandon Elementary on Friday, March 21. Kanetra, a fifth grader at Brandon, died on Monday, March 17. Her fellow classmates, along with the entire Brandon family, shared a very special time together on Friday at noon, honoring her and her memory. Kanetra's parents and family were in attendance and were presented with several gifts of remembrance from her classmates. Kanetra always had a smile on her face, loved the color pink, and was adored by all those who knew her. Along with a variety of tributes, pink balloons were released in her honor at the end of the ceremony. Many thanks go out to the students and staff members who coordinated this effort, Dr. Walter for making it possible, and Rev. Cindy Doran for her special words for the family and children. Kanetra will certainly be missed. May she rest in peace.
A new initiaive at Brandon Elementary is to introduce children to community and cultural experiences that may possibly be new to them. The first Brandon Pride Day was held Wednesday, March 5, thanks to the generous contribution of Mr. and Mrs. Jim Alexander of Jack Alexander, Ltd. Fifth grade Academic students were taken to the Manhattan Fine Dining Restaurant in Lufkin. Leading up to this outing, teachers discussed topics such as proper manners and attire for such an event. Students began the day full of excitement and anticipation. They certainly were not disappointed, as they returned to school, enthusiastically sharing their experiences with others. Teachers and other chaperones were very pleased with these students, commenting that the students' actions reflected that they had certainly listened to the discussions regarding proper etiquette. Many thanks to Manhattan for not only serving our students, but taking the time and care to discuss with them many of the particulars associated with operating an establishment such as theirs. Once again, the faculty and staff of Brandon would like to sincerely thank the Alexanders for their generosity in making this event possible for these students.