Though this past week was only four days long, our Blueprint students have made the most of their time in school. Our theme this week was to pivot our intentions. Students learned that success is often due to intentional living and determined by self-discipline and will power. In seminars this week, students learned how to search more effectively to find reliable information on Google, how to organize their research, and they conferenced one on one with facilitators to ensure their goals are all aligned. Sixth graders were introduced to their kindergarten Fingerprint buddies, while fifth graders practiced listening comprehension with daily read aloud. In math, students are exploring decimals at various levels.
The anticipation for project time is thick in the air as we get closer and closer to next week. Students have poured over World Class Outcomes, Content Standards, Twenty-First Century Skills, and Four C's in order to set project goals, write challenging questions, and create daily learning targets. This work has been very rigorous, as it can seem ambiguous at times. The reason we have slowed down to get this part right is because this is the part that sets the ceiling for each project and determines each project's success. This is the only time that all 83 students will be somewhat on the same "page". Once project work begins, students will chose seminar instruction based upon their individual needs. For example, if a student is working on an introductory paragraph for their project website, they may take a few writing seminars that will help them with technical vocabulary or sentence fluency. If a student is struggling with research organization, he or she will be able to take a seminar that will teach how to create links, make a table, and cite various sources. If a student is studying economics or history and needs some background knowledge, we will design seminars to support his or her research. These are just a few of the possibilities around the corner. We are so excited to get moving and see what students can do.
Though we don't expect students to have homework as a routine at Sage Canyon, we would love for them to be sharing the work they are doing at school with you on a daily basis. The more students can articulate their new understandings, the more they will take ownership of the process. Dinner table conversations should include chatter about seminar instruction, book titles they are reading, research they are doing, and inspirations they have had with design thinking. It may be slow to draw details out of your child at first, but be persistent! The dialogue you have will heighten the accountability and the motivation for more.
Our Ameritowne field trip is approaching quickly! Please make sure that your kiddo is registered. Here is the link, if you need it! To prepare for our trip, we need some parent support in the upcoming week. We need some support conducting job interviews, job training, and we are also in need of some parent chaperones to come with us on the 19th. If any of these spark your interest, please fill out this survey. We will be in contact with those able to help on Monday!
We close this week with a GREAT opportunity for the Blueprint girls. Just yesterday, we were invited to attend a design thinking workshop next Saturday, September 17th. This workshop is designed to empower girls to become leaders of social change. There are two available times if you are interested in signing your child up. The first session is at 10:00 and Mrs. Herzog will be co-facilitating. The second session starts at 1:00. If you are free next Saturday, we encourage your Blueprint girl to attend. There is no cost aside from an optional donation.
Since 2014, we've been coaching 2 hour-long design thinking and leadership workshops called "Find Your Drive," geared towards empowering middle school girls to become leaders of social change. We first designed our workshop as students at Stanford University, drawing inspiration from the Stanford d.school's design thinking methodology to inspire girl power in creative new ways. Now, our workshops have been featured by Fast Company, endorsed by industry professionals at IDEO, sponsored by SAP, and more.
As always, please let any of us know if you have questions or concerns. We hope you have a restful weekend! We thank you for sharing your children with us each week. This group of students continues to amaze us with their strength of character, their sharp minds, and their kind hearts.