Kaylin Stewart, Highland Park Renaissance Academy, 4th Grade
Meet Ms. Stewart at Highland Park Renaissance Academy (HPRA). She teaches with love and passion, while engaging her students all day, and surprisingly, with the same energy level (Wow!) She is the queen of best practices and is truly helping her students plan and be successful in the future.
Ms. Stewart has been with the Leona Group (teaching), going on two years, and she goes at it like a pro, not a novice teacher. She is always looking for materials, ideas, and activities that will benefit her students, even on her personal time. She fulfills students' needs by being a tutor, coach and mentor to them. "Ms. Stewart is one of the most enthusiastic teachers in the building. 'It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge' - Albert Einstein (This is what Stewart does daily- Rock On!)," says Rachel Talbert, HPRA instructional coach.
Thank you for giving your students confidence and strength, Ms. Stewart!
Alyssa Baron, Academy for Business and Technology Middle & High School, ELA grades 6-8
Meet Ms. Baron from Academy for Business and Technology Middle & High School (ABT). This is Ms. Baron's first year teaching at ABT, and she has an energy that is uplifting to the staff and students. She is a great asset to the ABT team this year. While ensuring her students receive a quality education, she works tirelessly to bring innovative ideas to the classroom. Her students learn from engaging and creative projects Ms. Baron assigns regularly.
Ms. Baron goes above and beyond at the school, participating in the tutoring program, as well as staying with students after school for enrichment activities. "She has shown me that a first year teacher is capable of looking like a veteran teacher," states Dezirae Daniels, ABT instructional coach.
We appreciate your innovation and creativity, Ms. Baron!
We were so grateful for the opportunity to work collaboratively at the Teacher Institute on January 13, 2017. In feedback from the previous Teacher Institutes, teachers shared that they would like more time in grade level or content area bands to collaborate with teachers from our other schools. We listened, and the outcomes from the Teacher Institute far exceeded our expectations. The teamwork between facilitators, CCAHS staff members, teachers and corporate departments was better and more productive than we could have ever anticipated. Coaches led vertical alignment sessions in all four critical content areas based on grade level bands. Teachers reviewed ELA and math pacing guides and took the opportunity to make some minor adjustments. While the science and social studies teachers met to begin the quarterly pacing guide work in those areas.
Thanks so much to the Cesar Chavez Academy High School staff members, technology team, corporate volunteers, and the instructional coaches for all of the hard work you did making the day go smoothly! Thank you to the teachers for improving the academic picture for TLG students!
If you have not had a chance to fill out the survey for the Teacher Institute, please click here to provide us feedback.
We are eager to keep this momentum going and have tentatively scheduled four work sessions this summer in Okemos at the Leona Group Conference Center. The cohort dates are July 19, July 20, August 2 and August 3. More information will be provided as the school year progresses. We look forward to continued opportunities to collaborate.
Cesar Chavez Academy High School senior students enjoy a luncheon event today in downtown Detroit. The selected student ambassadors have big plans following graduation, and will join previous graduates at prestigious colleges and university. Cesar Chavez Academy graduates can be found on the campuses of MIT, Harvard, Yale, University of Michigan, University of Pennsylvania, Loyola, Chicago and Stanford... just to name a few.
Ms. Richardson at Cesar Chavez Academy - Martin Campus tutors on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 11:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. All of the students in the program have shown growth. According to the table below, two students are now reading at their grade level. NWEA results show that all students will need additional practice in vocabulary acquisition and use. This program will provide additional practice and time on task in developing the skill.
One strategy used by Ms. Richardson is teaching students how to use context clues. First, the student and tutor reads the entire sentence that contains the unknown word. Then, they re-read the sentence that came before the current sentence and continue on reading the sentence after the unknown word. Next, the team thinks about the meaning of the text. Finally, they try to identify what the unknown word is based on the meaning of the text. Thomas Goodley, school leader of Cesar Chavez Academy - Martin Campus is very enthusiastic, saying "this is the lunch reading program. Her (Ms. Richardson's) data is excellent."
The program runs from November 2016 thru May 2017; three sessions are assigned, with a rotation of tutors and students. The tutors will assist students for four days a week for four weeks. The program has been a huge success thus far.
"The first session went very well," said Carmen Willingham, HPRA school leader. The teachers had to complete a survey at the completion of the first session. Here are a few successes and/or take-a-ways from the teachers: "the group interaction helped teachers better understand their students; the progress for low performing students was tremendous; conversations with students uninterrupted was fascinating; students love the one-on-one attention, which makes them feel special."
The goal is to continue with the program so HPRA students will continue to show academic growth and success.
School leaders, assistant leaders and instructional coaches were asked to submit their nominations for monthly Teacher Hall of Fame candidates. We have a primary teacher category for grades K-5 and a secondary teacher category this year for grades 6-12. These nominations are based on the observations the school leaders make in their locations. It is up to them to honor a teacher who they feel embodies the mission of their school. Once the nomination is sent electronically to The Leona Group Department of Academic Achievement, the team reviews the nominees and base their decisions on who best embodies the spirit of The Leona Group and academic success. Congratulations to the January 2017 selections:
Walking through the halls at Highland Park Renaissance Academy (HPRA) is like walking through an art museum. Mr. Ernest Parker, behavior interventionist at HPRA, expresses his creativity by making paper cutouts colorful and relevant to the students to display on the bulletin boards throughout campus. His drawings are a pleasure to see, and he renews the bulletin boards at least every month, sometimes every other week to keep things fresh.
Often, the boards are a collaborative effort between Mr. Parker and teachers or staff members. However, the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS) boards are mostly his creations. He says he is inspired by the students when he chooses the topic to be covered. The students who have grown up at HPRA, they got excited about the bulletin boards in elementary school, and they continue to give Mr. Parker ideas as middle school students. He asks the students what cartoons they like, and then he tries to draw characters that will support good behavior.
Despite being the master artist on campus, Mr. Parker says that while drawing gives him an outlet for his creativity, the best part of his job is working with the kids. He guides them to solve problems and express their feelings in productive ways, and that is his greatest reward. "This is the best group of teachers, students and staff we've had so far, we're really enjoying this school year," said Mr. Parker in his closing comment.