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Indian Hills News

Migration Movie Poster

Perfect attendance has its rewards at Indian Hills this year! All students who had perfect attendance in March and April had the opportunity to go to the Reel Theater on May 6th and see the movie Migration. Two buses took the 132 students to the Reel Theater where each student received a small drink and popcorn along with an Airhead candy to enjoy during the movie. We filled one of the theaters and then returned to school to picnic in the library because of the inclement weather. The kids enjoyed getting to leave school and go see a great movie. Thank you Reel Theater for making this reward possible.

Indian Hills "Watermelon" team together with fifth grade teachers, Mrs. Curzon and Ms. Kate and our librarian Mrs. Higgins at Century after taking 2nd place in the IBOB District Competition.

The 2024 District Idaho Battle of the Books (IBOB) Competition was held at Century High School on Tuesday, April 30th. Congratulations to our Indian Hills Team, The Watermelons, who took second place. They competed against 7 other elementary teams.  The questions for the competition came from the 16 books chosen for 2024. At the District Competition teams must answer content questions as well as questions where they must identify the title and author of each book. We are so proud of our all of our Indian Hills IBOB participants. 

If you are curious what IBOB is or you want to begin your reading for the 2024-2025 competition this summer, you can learn more at Idaho Battle of the Books.

Kristen Johnson

Please join us in congratulating Simplot Inspirational Teacher of the Year finalist, Kristin Johnson. Ms. Johnson teaches 1st grade at Indian Hills Elementary School.

This year, the Simplot Education Council received 2,377 nominations for 398 teachers in Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25. Finalists will be featured daily through Thursday, May 9, 2024. Three Simplot Inspirational Teacher Awards will be announced on Friday, May 10, 2024 – one for a teacher at the elementary, middle and high school levels. In addition, 5 finalists have been selected for each category and each will be awarded a $100 check. The Simplot Inspirational Teacher Award Recipients of 2024 will each be presented a $500 check on behalf of the Council.

“I believe Ms. Johnson should be recognized not only for trying new methods of teaching, but for how much she cares about each and every student. She has gone out of her way for my son personally. She is always learning new things because she understands that not all children learn the same way. For example, we learned that my son has dyslexia, and that can come with many obstacles. There was a dyslexia class being taught at ISU, and not only did she invite me but she attended this class as well. It absolutely warmed my heart to see her there and knowing she just wants to be the best teacher she can by using all of her resources. I know just how hard it is to be away from your kids and she does it to help others. She is such an inspiration to not only the students in her class but me as well. You can really understand how great she is when you talk to her students and see how much they absolutely adore her. It is because she not only teaches the importance of reading, math, etc. but she teaches them that it's okay to make mistakes and that it's okay to feel upset or frustrated but through all of it that they are loved. I think that is what makes them want to try and do and be their best. My son was homeschooled for kindergarten because of my fear of what happened to my husband. He too is dyslexic and he was just passed along year after year never getting the help he needed. Well, Mrs. Johnson calmed those fears after seeing how much she cared and did everything she could to help him every single day.

She has even asked me for some ideas on things that might help him, since I did teach him his first year. So, I gave her some ideas of things that helped me teach him and that made it easier for him to understand and she tried them with all of her students. She has said it helped not only him but others as well. I can honestly say that my son would not be where he's at academically without her. She is truly exceptional! If I could have it my way I would have her teach my son throughout his 12 years of schooling.

I have never had such a positive experience with a teacher. Mrs. Johnson has overcome one of life's hardest challenges and she has never let it stand in her way of being incredibly remarkable. She has given my son the confidence he needed to accomplish whatever life throws at him. I can't tell you how much it means to look into his eyes and see the look of triumph. Finally accomplishing the thing that seemed so impossible at the time. I owe a lot of that to Mrs. Johnson.” Talisa S. - Parent

Mrs. Higgins is announcing the rules to the IBOB Competition to the 4th and 5th grade students in the assembly in our cafeteria.

Five fabulous fifth grade teams came ready to compete to be the team that represents our school at the city IBOB Competition at Century on April 30th at 5pm. There were sixteen books chosen for this years competition among them are The Hero Two Doors Down, The Lemonade War, Becoming Muhammad Ali, Fablehaven, The Untouchables, and Stanley will Probably be Fine. Our teams: The Gorgeous Googles, Just Pigs, Watermelons, Flower Power and DOATS then had to decide which book the question or statement was from. The teams had to correctly spell the title of the book and the author to get the full 5 points for each question. It was a great competition as all teams were quick to answer. They only had 30 minutes to score the most points and at the end we had a tie! Congratulations to the Watermelons who were able to answer correctly the tie breaking question of the day.

Two learners making estimation guesses on the amount of Legos in the jar.

Dear Cougar Families,
Reading was a focus during the month of March as we celebrated Dr. Seuss’ birthday and dressed as our favorite book characters. First graders performed the “Seussical” play to celebrate a favorite author. As a school, we “read across America” as each class read 35 minutes every day for a week. The PTA provided popcorn for our reading adventure!

April and May are our testing months. Our state assessments provide us with valuable data on each of our learners. ISAT testing protocols do not allow electronic devices of any sort (including watches) in the testing environment. Learners will be asked to leave electronic devices in their backpacks during this time. We appreciate your help reminding them of this. Please also support your learner by making sure they have adequate sleep and breakfast the days of their tests.

Unfortunately, we have experienced vandalism (extremely vulgar notes and drawings) in our bathrooms recently. Our policy is one student in the restroom at a time. Please talk to your learner about their responsibility in taking care of our school. We want all students to have pride in being an Indian Hills Cougar! 

We enjoy working with our learners each day! Feel free to contact us if you have any concerns or questions.
Sincerely, Jill Johnson

Two brothers a first grader and a fifth grader are finding the balancing point for different objects.

It's our favorite night of the year when our learners bring their families to school to play games and learn new ways to have fun with learning at home. In each hallway, four or five classrooms host games that test skills of agility, balance, and often luck. This year families competed against each other in Mini Golf, Cookie Face, Rolling for Points, Bean Bag Toss, Dice Stacking, Egg Bouncing, Ring Toss, Cheerios, and Bolts and Nuts. We also had fun learning and beating our parents in math games, sight word games, OREO writing, balance point, comprehension strategies and juggling.  Each win earned a ticket for a chance to win a prize of your choice.  The cafeteria had three tables of prizes including legos, art supplies, games, science kits, book series, puzzles, and balls. Learners could also win an estimation prize if they guessed the right number of licorice, eraser pets, legos, or Twix minis. The PTA also had a drawing for a basket of amazing things. This night would not be possible without a lot of help. We would like to extend a BIG THANK YOU to Mrs. Balmer, all of our amazing staff, Indian Hills Elementary Schoolwide Title 1: Family Engagement, United Way, Idaho PTA, Kevin Robbins, Idaho State University Ambassadors, Golf Team and Benny the Tiger, and National Honor Society Students from Pocatello and Century High Schools. It was an amazing night because of all our helpers and our families who came to have fun!

First grade learners performing Seussical the Musical on the risers in the gym. They are dressed in THIING 1 or 2 shirts.

Our first grade learners celebrated Dr. Seuss' Birthday by performing Seussical the Musical Jr. for their families and friends. Oh the thinks one can think when we sing songs about Dr. Seuss' stories. Our learners sang and read written parts from Horton Hears a Who, McElligot's Pool and Green Eggs and Ham. We celebrated that "Anything's Possible" and "A Person's a Person No Matter How Small" and poor "Sam I Am" couldn't convince our first graders to try his "Green Eggs and Ham" here or there or anywhere!! After the performance our visitors were invited to read Dr. Seuss books in the classroom with their learner. Thank you to everyone who came to support our adorable "Thing 1 - 100 Learners".

The four characters from the play are standing in front of the students answering questions

A BIG Thank You to Belnap & Summers Orthodontics and Oak Mountain Dental for bringing the Idaho Shakespeare Theater to Indian Hills! We loved seeing The Legend of Finn McCoy come to life. Finn McCoy was able to outsmart the Evil Wizard with a little help from the Salmon of Knowledge and saved the world from destruction. We learned that even though we are small we can make a big difference in our world by making good choices and being kind. 

 January Employee of the Month PIES recipient Charonne Gunter pictured with Principal Jill Johnson, Beth Pope, Jenny  Higgins

The Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25’s Employee-of-the-Month P.I.E.S. award recognizes employees who Positively Influence Educational Success. The award is for employees who go above and beyond in that effort.

This month we recognized Ms. Charonne Gunter as January’s PIES Award recipient. Ms. Gunter teaches Kindergarten at Indian Hills Elementary School.

Mrs. Gunter was nominated for the PIES Employee of the Month award by three individuals: Indian Hills Principal Jill Johnson, colleague Jenny Higgins, and Beth Pope, who has worked alongside Mrs. Gunter as her paraprofessional for the past ten years.

In her nomination, Mrs. Johnson wrote, “Charonne is super positive! No matter the challenge she chooses to focus on the good. She is a team leader both at Indian Hills and throughout the district, having served as a unit developer for years. She has also mentored new teachers in and out of the district. She wants others to succeed so she shares her tips for success with other aspiring kindergarten teachers. Charonne works so well with all of her kindergarten students. She communicates with them in a way that motivates them to work hard and want to be at school. Those who work with Charonne feel her enthusiasm and love for teaching and learning!"

Mrs. Higgins wrote, “Charonne Gunter is the most amazing Kindergarten teacher I know! She consistently finds creative and fun ways to apply the curriculum concepts for each learner, with particular attention to individual learning ability. Her classroom is bright, happy, and engaging where every learner feels valued, loved, and appreciated. Charonne cultivates joy in her classroom and our school and is an inspiration to all!"

Mrs. Pope wrote, “Charonne Gunter exemplifies the district's PIES criteria. She is always willing to share what works and what doesn't. She is also willing to use what she learns from other teachers around the district in our classroom. I have witnessed her gentle and calm way with children. She has a way of speaking with the learners that makes them feel loved and important, getting to know each learner individually. She is always looking for ways to engage the shy learner in a positive manner that boosts their confidence."

Ms. Gunter was recognized at the Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday, January 16, 2024, and received a $50 gift card from the educational partner for this award, Lookout Credit Union. 

Student Helpers and boxes of hygiene items collected this week.

Learners at Indian Hills brought donations of personal hygiene and household cleaning items to be given to families in need in our district. Our Fifth grade student leadership helped by making posters, doing announcements, collecting the items from each classroom and counting items.  We totaled 1173 donated items! That was enough to fill our closet and give the remainders to the High School! 

Learners performing the Winter Program.

The third grade "Winter Program" was held on December 12th.  Ten songs were performed as well as 16 small speaking parts.  Everyone worked so hard to learn all the words and present beautiful music to their families.  Also, Mrs. Johnson played the piano for every song (she's amazing)! 

 

Indian Hills Learners and Staff holding hands outside around the perimeter of the school singing our new Cougar School Song .

On Tuesday, May 16, 2023, Indian Hills learners and staff celebrated strengthening our Caring Cougar Community by holding hands and singing our new school song outside the perimeter of the school.  One of our 5th Grade teachers, Whitney Curzon, composed the music and lyrics with sign language and led the school over the intercom.

 

Pocatello Police Officers standing next to their police cars and their K-9 Dogs on a snowy day south of town.
Pocatello Police Officers standing next to their police cars and their K-9 Dogs on a snowy day south of town.

Pictured from left to right are Officer Namohala with K-9 Lobo, Officer Anderson with K-9 Flip, Officer Torres with K-9 Thor, and Corporal Seamons with K-9 Bruce.

Third Grade learners recently read a story in their ELA books about police partners, so on January 5, 2023, Pocatello police officers and their K-9 dogs were invited to visit Indian Hills Elementary 3rd Grade classrooms.  

Pocatello K-9 dogs are Belgian Malinois, a Dutch Shepherd. They look like German Shepherds but are not as stocky and don't weigh as much. They are also trained as working dogs rather than pets.

Officer Namohala with K-9 Lobo and Officer Anderson with K-9 Flip went into the classrooms to introduce their K-9 dogs and to educate learners and teachers about this special program.

According to the ELA story K-9 dogs are with their officers all day and all night. Their most important job is to protect their partners. K-9 dogs go through a rigorous training program running through obstacle courses, jumping as high as 8 feet in the air, and walking up very steep and open stairways.  They have very sensitive noses so they can sniff out drugs and catch criminals from scents on their clothing.  K-9 police cars don't have a backseat so that the K-9 dogs have a comfortable place to rest while in the car.  They have carpet, a built-in water bowl, and fans to keep them cool in warmer weather.  When they get home from work, K-9's have play time and rest time with their partners.

Meet "Topper" The Elk on a Shelf Idaho Fish & Game

Thank you to the Idaho Fish and Game Southeast Region for this amazing experience today for 2nd grade learners at Indian Hills Elementary School with Topper the "Elk" on the Shelf.

Five students standing near the Valley Mission box truck

Our food drive for November was organized by our Community Resource Worker and a group of fifth grade student leaders. Non-perishable foods were donated from every grade and classroom. Food was distributed to our local school pantries and to Valley Mission.

Valley Mission serves between 650 to 850 families in the Portneuf Valley each month through their food pantry with the support of the Idaho Foodbank and local business partners, including Walmart, Smith's, Albertsons, Jacksons, Fred Meyer, Ridley's, COSTCO, and Big Lots!

Valley Mission offers hope and new beginnings by providing, coordinating, and delivering an efficient system of care (including food assistance, warming shelter, nutritional and financial counseling and job seeking skills) for people experiencing poverty and homelessness in Bannock County.

 

Three students and an adult loading food boxes into the back of the Valley Mission box truck
Five students standing near the Valley Mission box truck
Firefighter Dads bring fire truck and equipment to Indian Hills

On September 28, 2022, four dads of children who attend Indian Hills Elementary visited our school with their fire trucks and equipment to educate students about their careers and fire safety.

Brian O'Donnell is a wildlife operations technician for the Bureau of Land Management. His daughter Lucy is a 1st grader and his wife Ann is a Special Education Teacher at Indian Hills Elementary.

Ben Myers is an engineer for the Idaho National Laboratory's fire department. His son Carver is in 1st grade.

Dustin Williams is an assistant fire management officer for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. His son Jasper is in 5th Grade.

Paul Davis is a Bureau of Land Management engine captain. His children are Bridger in 5th Grade and Mila in 2nd Grade.

We also had a firefighter from the City of Pocatello Fire Department who came to this event.

"Kids are engaged, they get hands-on experience and it promotes safety. Plus, the kids love seeing their parents in action."  Principal Jill Johnson

Brian O'Donnell - BLM Fire Department with daughter Lucy 1st Grade & wife Special Ed. Teacher at Indian Hills.

Brian O'Donnell, his daughter, Lucy and his wife, Ann, who is a Special Education Teacher at Indian Hills Elementary.

Ben Myers - INL Fire Department Engineer with his son Carver in 1st Grade

Ben Myers and his son, Carver.

Dustin Williams - BIA Fire Department with son Jasper in 5th Grade at Indian Hills Elementary on September 28, 2022.

Dustin Williams and his son, Jasper.

Paul Davis - BLM Fire Department with children Bridger 5th Grade and Mila 1st Grade at Indian Hills Elementary

Paul Davis and his children Bridger and Mila.

District News

Back to School

When is the first day of school for the 2024/2025 school year?

  • Wednesday, August 21, 2024

When is the last day of school for the 2024/2025 school year?

  • Thursday, May 29, 2025

How do I apply for my child to receive free and reduced meals?

Online Application Instructions

  • Free and reduced meals will continue to be provided for those learners who qualify during the 2024-2025 school year. To qualify for free and reduced meals, parents and guardians are encouraged to fill out the free and reduced meal application after July 1, 2024. For more information refer to our Food Services website

When is graduation for the Class of 2025?

  • New Horizon High School: Thursday, May 29, 2025 6:00 p.m.
  • Highland High School: Friday, May 30, 2025 10:00 a.m.
  • Century High School: Friday, May 30, 2025 1:00 p.m.
  • Pocatello High School: Friday, May 30, 2025 4:00 p.m.

When do I find out about transfers?

  • The elementary transfer meeting is Thursday, August 8, 2024.
  • Secondary schools transfers are notified within 60 days of submission of the application.

How do I transfer my learner?

Elementary

New Elementary Transfer Form

Returning Elementary Transfer Form

Secondary

High School/Middle School Transfer Application

When is Registration?

  • Students who are new to PCSD 25: Register online by completing the Online Registration. After completing the registration online, call your neighborhood school after August 1 to confirm.

When is schedule pick-up for middle school and high school learners?

  • August 7 and 8, 2024
    • 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
    • 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

When is Back to School Night?

  • Middle School Back to School Night is August 19, 2024 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Where is my Bus Stop?

What time does my child’s school start? What time does my child’s school dismiss?

Start and Dismissal Times for Schools

What school supplies will my child need this year?

Elementary School Supplies

Middle School Supplies

High School Supplies are listed on the course syllabus

Where is the 2024-2025 school calendar located?

2024-2025 School District 25 Calendar

What are the upcoming school closure dates? (No School)

  • ALL Grades: Monday, September 2, 2024 - Labor Day
  • Grades K-5: Thursday & Friday, October 3 & 4, 2024 - Parent Teachers Conferences
  • Grades 6-12: School will be in session Thursday, October 3. Closed Friday, October 4, 2024 - Parent Teacher Conferences
  • ALL Grades: Tuesday, November 5, 2024 - Election Day
  • ALL Grades: Thursday, November 14, 2024 - End of Trimester/Record Day
  • ALL Grades: Friday, November 15, 2024 - Teacher Professional Development Day
  • ALL Grades: Monday - Friday, November 25 - 29, 2024 - Thanksgiving Break
  • ALL Grades: Monday - Monday, December 23 - January 3, 2025 - Winter Break. School resumes Monday, January 6, 2025.
  • ALL Grades: Monday, January 20, 2025 - Idaho Human Rights Day
  • ALL Grades: Friday, February 7, 2025 - Parent Teacher Conference Grades K-8
  • ALL Grades: Monday, February 17, 2025 - President's Day
  • ALL Grades: Friday, February 28, 2025 - End of Trimester/Record Day
  • ALL Grades: Monday - Friday, March 24 - 28, 2025 - Spring Break
  • ALL Grades: Monday, May 26, 2025 - Memorial Day
  • ALL Grades: Thursday, May 29, 2025 - Last Day of School

What is the best way to monitor my child’s progress during the school year?

  • Parent engagement has a direct correlation to student success. PCSD 25 parents can log into the Campus Parent Portal and stay engaged with information at-your-fingertips throughout the school year. Parent favorites include:
    • Access to student grades 
    • Review attendance and absences 
    • Monitor assignments due or upcoming exams 
    • Notifications for School/District Announcements 
    • Lunchroom information 
  • To download the Campus Parent Portal app on your mobile phone. Visit the App or Play Store on your mobile device and search for “campus parent portal”. If you need login information, please contact the Help Desk: (208) 235-3219.
 January Employee of the Month PIES recipient Charonne Gunter pictured with Principal Jill Johnson, Beth Pope, Jenny  Higgins

The Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25’s Employee-of-the-Month P.I.E.S. award recognizes employees who Positively Influence Educational Success. The award is for employees who go above and beyond in that effort.

This month we recognized Ms. Charonne Gunter as January’s PIES Award recipient. Ms. Gunter teaches Kindergarten at Indian Hills Elementary School.

Mrs. Gunter was nominated for the PIES Employee of the Month award by three individuals: Indian Hills Principal Jill Johnson, colleague Jenny Higgins, and Beth Pope, who has worked alongside Mrs. Gunter as her paraprofessional for the past ten years.

In her nomination, Mrs. Johnson wrote, “Charonne is super positive! No matter the challenge she chooses to focus on the good. She is a team leader both at Indian Hills and throughout the district, having served as a unit developer for years. She has also mentored new teachers in and out of the district. She wants others to succeed so she shares her tips for success with other aspiring kindergarten teachers. Charonne works so well with all of her kindergarten students. She communicates with them in a way that motivates them to work hard and want to be at school. Those who work with Charonne feel her enthusiasm and love for teaching and learning!"

Mrs. Higgins wrote, “Charonne Gunter is the most amazing Kindergarten teacher I know! She consistently finds creative and fun ways to apply the curriculum concepts for each learner, with particular attention to individual learning ability. Her classroom is bright, happy, and engaging where every learner feels valued, loved, and appreciated. Charonne cultivates joy in her classroom and our school and is an inspiration to all!"

Mrs. Pope wrote, “Charonne Gunter exemplifies the district's PIES criteria. She is always willing to share what works and what doesn't. She is also willing to use what she learns from other teachers around the district in our classroom. I have witnessed her gentle and calm way with children. She has a way of speaking with the learners that makes them feel loved and important, getting to know each learner individually. She is always looking for ways to engage the shy learner in a positive manner that boosts their confidence."

Ms. Gunter was recognized at the Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday, January 16, 2024, and received a $50 gift card from the educational partner for this award, Lookout Credit Union. 

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