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Building Enrichment One Lego at a Time-Hallmark #3

  • Soaring Academy Opens it's doors.

    Soaring Academy Opens it's doors.
    Soaring Academy opens it's doors to 300 students in Kindergarten through fifth grade. The the students will wear uniforms monday through friday. Parents will be very active in the school required to volunteer for four hours a month. It is a school of choice, so many students will probably not live in the same neighborhood as their classmates.
  • Period: to

    The time I have worked at Soaring Academy

  • Start of ELC 660

    Start of ELC 660
    First day of my ELC 660 class where I will learn best practices for principals and clarify the vision of my quality school.
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    If a principal wants to accomplish a project with great success, they must first provide an atmosphere where others feel their job is valued (Alvy and Robbins, 2009).
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    The leaders who have the biggest gains will be the ones who have treated their staff equally and respectfully (Bennis and Goldsmith, 2010).
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    Effective principals learn the resources beyond their immediate parent population. They use their community to help make their schools successful (Alvy and Robbins, 2009).
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    Principals who are effective commit to lifelong learning and enrich their work (Alvy and Robbins, 2010).
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    Principals who do comparable work along side their staff, create congruity and are the most successful (Bennis, 2009).
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    Effective principals understand that parent volunteers share commitment, values, and goals with the school (Bennis, 2009).
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    Effective leaders who maintain their integrity while changing to meet the current demands will be the most successful (Bennis, 2009).
  • Best Practice

    Best Practice
    The most successful Principals place high value on people and relationships (Donaldson, Marnik, Mackenzie, and Ackerman, 2009)
  • The 2012-2013 school year begins.

    The 2012-2013 school year begins.
    18 classrooms with about 16 students in each class will start school today at Soaring Academy. The student population is comprised of 52% White, not Hispanic, 35% Black, not Hispanic, 9% Asian/Pacific Islander, 3% Hispanic, and less than 1% American Indian/Alaskan Native.
  • Welcome to ELC 690

    Welcome to ELC 690
    Principal Internship is introduced and hallmark projects are discussed. Project descriptions are due by September 20th.
  • Period: to

    Building enrichment-Reflection of the Process

    Upon reflection, I would have spent less time trying to contact the representative who offerred to bring the robot her students made to share with our school. If I had let go of having her present, I would have been able to have the parent's evening much sooner and perhaps we would have built our own robot. The lesson I learned is to set a reasonable timeframe and hold to it. If you are unable to get someone to committ, move on; better to have the program kick off earlier rather than later.
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    Building Reflection-Lessons Learned

    Another lesson I learned is AIG students need challenged to grow. They are not academic robots who will drive themselves to reach their fullest potential. They are children who if allowed will do the minimum required. They will pass but they will not grow. Just as we commit to helping our Exceptional Children, we must try as hard to help our Academically and Intellectually Gifted students reach their potential.
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    Plan's Impact

    I believe the largest impact this plan has had is to reach out to our AIG community and make them feel important. Because these students do well in school with little effort, it can be easy to overlook them. Parents, teachers, and even the students needed reminding that we care about this population and are passionate about it's growth and future well being. Plus, allowing parents to have a voice in the process empowers them to become more involved.
  • First Discussion with my Principal

    First Discussion with my Principal
    My principal and I meet to discuss my class and I present my ideas for projects. In reviewing the end of the year testing data, I realized our Academically and Intellectually Gifted population were passing their tests but not showing growth in their scores. In fact, some of them were actually decreasing in their previous year's scores. My Principal agreed that this was a population that needed to be examined and a plan created to increase their growth.
  • Meeting with school improvment team

    Meeting with school improvment team
    I met with the school improvement committee and discussed what the Principal and myself thought was a needed improvment for the school which was enriching the Academically Gifted program for grades 3-5, adding an academic program for them, and reinvigorating our Kindergarten through second grade enrichment program. After getting their approval and thoughts on the needed improvements to the program, I was ready to write up my proposal for class.
  • Who will be involved in this project?

    Who will be involved in this project?
    Our Academically and Intellectually Gifted (AIG) teacher, Mr. Aim, AG students, and their parents, as well as regular education teachers will all be involved in designing and implementing our new AIG plan. Everyone will work together to find programs and teaching methods that challenge our AIG students to reach their learning potential.
  • First Meeting with AG Teacher

    First Meeting with AG Teacher
    Mr. Aim and myself sit down to discuss the testing data for the ___ Academically Gifted (AG) students. In order to reverse the trending loss or stagnation of growth, we are going to do two things:
    *increase enrichment opportunities in all grades for all studens
    *Add a program for our 3-5 AG students to increase critical thinking skills and reignite their interest in learning.
  • First email sent to local Lego representative to schedule a day for the kick off.

    First email sent to local Lego representative to schedule a day for the kick off.
    Mr. Aim sends an email to our local contact to try and schedule a night, in October, when her group of students and the robot they designed can come to the school to introduce the project to our families and students. The email is returned with two dates, where only adults can come. The children and their robot can not come during an evening in October. Mr. Aim and I decide to try for a date in November as we feel our kick off event will be better served with the actual robot demonstration.
  • 2nd attempt to find a date for our Lego kick off night.

    2nd attempt to find a date for our Lego kick off night.
    My second email to our local representative goes unanswered so I called and left phone message for possible dates before the winter holiday.
  • Present idea for enrichment to the necessary players.

    Present idea for enrichment to the necessary players.
  • Survey says!

    Survey says!
    An AG survey is sent out to evaluate the current feelings about the program, it's strengths, weaknesses, and perceived areas of improvement. (See Appendix A)
  • Survey Results

    Survey Results
    I examine the results from the surveys to see where I should focus my attention. SURVEY RESULTS INCLUDED HERE.
  • 2nd Meeting with the AG teacher to discuss the results of the surveys.

    2nd Meeting with the AG teacher to discuss the results of the surveys.
    At our second meeting Mr. Aim and I discuss the survey results and how to formulate a plan of action.
  • Period: to

    Designing a Plan

    My plan:
    1.Our school will purchase the supplies for First Lego League.
    2. Schedule a family night to kick off, explain the program and ask for parent team leaders.
    3. Work with classroom teachers to integrate the Lego challenges into thier classroom lessons.
    4. Work with Mr. Aim to ensure students use critical thinking skills in the Lego building.
    5. Form an AG parent advisory board to meet with school monthly.
  • School Impovement Commitee

    School Impovement Commitee
    Present the plan to the School Improvement committee to see if they have and suggestions for changes or additions. It passes as is. Team decides, Mr. Aim, Staff ,and Curriculum committees will work with me and the 4th grade teacher to integrate Lego challeges into existing work. Leadership, Mr. Aim, and Administration will work with me to choose parents for advisory board. Culture committe will work with me to design and implement the night event for the families.
  • First Lego League

    First Lego League
    As I still have been unable to pin down our community resource for when they can bring their robot and students, Mr. Aim and I mull over a possible Plan B.
  • Setting the Date

    Setting the Date
    Met with the school improvement team to discuss several dates that will work for the AG night
  • Meeting with the Principal

    Narrowing down the possible dates to three options with the help of the school improvement committee, I then met with my Principal to see the date she wanted. She chooses Thursday, March 14th, 2013 from 6-7pm.
  • Last Call

    Last Call
    I made one last phone call to our representative and left a message with her about our perspective date. I will also mail her an invitation.
  • Survey Data Complied

    Survey Data Complied
    Using the Survey Monkey website, I compiled all the data from the teacher, parent, and student surveys into a powerpoint (Appendix B) that was ready for presentation the evening of our program and also for discussion with the AG teacher and school improvement committee when we returned from holiday break.
  • Planning Meeting with the School Improvement Commmittee

    Planning Meeting with the School Improvement Commmittee
    Attended a planning meeting with the school improvement committee to discuss the results of the survey, get their feedback, and talk about a plan of action. In the plan of action for next year, the team discusses how to ensure that as the school grows in size, students are being given equal opportunities to be included in the AIG program. Additionally, the team is starting to think about how possible costs associated with the Lego League can be managed to allow equal access to participation.
  • Meeting with the AG teacher

    Meeting with the AG teacher
    Meeting with the AG teacher to build the powerpoint, incorporate the suggestions of the school improvement team, and prepare our presentation for the Principal.
  • Meeting with the Principal

    Meeting with the Principal
    Meeting with the Principal to show the presentation, receive any additional feedback, and obtain permission to send out invitiations. All went well invitations will go home in one week.
  • Invitations are sent out.

    Invitations are sent out.
    Invitation are sent out in the Monday folders to all the AG students and their families.
  • AIG Kick Off Night

    AIG Kick Off Night
    AIG Kick Off Night has arrived!
  • Making a robot

    Making a robot
    Mr. Aim shows off the students' robotic work.
  • The Game Board

    The Game Board
    Mr. Aim shows the game board the students built to run their robot on and to have it perform the tasks required to earn points.
  • Mr. Aim describes the students challenge.

    Mr. Aim describes the students challenge.
    Mr. Aim leads the parents through a discussion on what the robot would need to do and how the team gathers points in the competition.
  • Survery Results

    Survery Results
    I share the powerpoint of survery results with the AIG community.
  • AIG kids present.

    AIG kids present.
    AIG kids present what they have learned and what they like about the program.
  • Parents and students enjoy talking about the AIG projects.

    Parents and students enjoy talking about the AIG projects.
    After the presentation, the parents and students enjoyed looking at the robotic displays. Parents then signed up to be volunteer coaches and/or consultants for next year's teams.
  • Present results from new survey to school improvement committee.

    Present results from new survey to school improvement committee.
    Presented the short survey results to the school improvement committee, AIG teacher, and Principal. The survey results show 75% of parents attended the meeting and felt more confident after it. They wished there were more opportunities for the students to show the actual robot they built as well as talk about other things they are doing in the program. 50% of parents volunteered to be mentors or coach the robotic teams next year and 90% said they felt more confident recommending the school.
  • Parent Feedback

    Parent Feedback
    Surveys are sent out to see how the AIG kick off night was perceived. (Appendix C)
  • Who, what, when, and where

    Who, what, when, and where
    Who: Staff, Families, and students involved in teaching and supporting the AIG community.
    What: I surveyed everyone involved for areas to imporve and build on, introduced a new enrichment program, and increased excitment for the AIG program.
    When: The school improvement committee, AIG teacher, and myself worked on this from the start of school until current day.
    Where: This program has been worked on during and after school in both pull out and inclusive settings.
  • Future Needs/Next Steps

    Future Needs/Next Steps
    Soaring Academy needs to keep communicating with the AIG parents and students by forming a parent advisory board. I have met with next year's AIG teacher and the Principal to map out criteria ensuring the parent leaders remain diverse and fair minded. Additionally, the AIG teacher needs to meet with parents to allow them to voice their concerns and find ways to help their child excel. The program will need parent and community support to be competitive in the robotic competitions.