In my current role as administrator at Woodland Jr. High, my involvement with AVID has totally changed. I went from being the first elective teacher at our school to now getting to be the administrator that works with the current elective teacher and program coordinator to ensure that we are maximizing the program for our students. The two Prezi’s that are embedded in this post are two materials that I will review with our teachers in our upcoming professional development. We will be discussing the program overview and the specifics of Cornell Note Taking with some of our teachers that are brand new to the program.
On Friday before spring break my AVID students completed their second service learning project of the school year. This project was another teacher appreciation project in which the students prepared invitations to our teachers and staff at school to join us for lunch. We prepared a huge table on our stage in the cafeteria that included a wide variety of baked goods. Teachers came through and were served the goods by our AVID students and also given a word of appreciation for all of their hard work.
Service learning projects are a huge part of AVID and really help instill that sense of gratitude in our students. Furthermore, it also provides a model to our entire student population as to what model behavior looks like. Our students did an outstanding job and I could not be more proud of the work that they put in.
On Friday I had the opportunity to take our AVID class on their first college visit to the University of Arkansas. While there we took the standard tour of the campus and checked out what they had to offer. Students took tours of the various academic facilities of the campus and the student common areas…like the dorms and shopping on campus. We also took the time to talk to an admissions adviser to discuss requirements for admission and possible scholarship opportunities as well.
In my AVID class we have been discussing the recent debates about the Alabama immigration law. In class we took some time to listen to a podcast from This American Life about these laws and I thought I would share the story on our blog.
Today in AVID my students focused on writing thank you letters to everyone that recently helped out with our teacher appreciation project in which we served coffee and brownies to our teachers here at Woodland.
Our local newspaper was kind enough to feature our AVID students once again in the paper for our service learning project a couple of weeks ago. For this project students went room to room in our school and delivered coffee and brownies to all our school staff as a sign of appreciation. The picture above, and a small write up, were featured in the Northwest Arkansas Times last week.
For over a month now, my AVID students have been working on a top secret project that was finally executed today. Students went door to door in our school thanking each member of our staff for all that they do for our school and greeting them with a cup of coffee and a brownie. This project was a huge hit among all our teachers and staff and the kids pulled it off perfectly. Very proud of all of them.
Lesson Two – Rapping is Tough
This week we finished our unit on the reformation time period with a project which required my students to write a song about the reformation. Many of my students decided that they wanted to write their song in the form of a rap…however, many of my kids find out that trying to rap about the reformation would prove to be a tough task. While many of the raps were good, several of my students said that they really struggled trying to write lyrics, make it historically accurate, and flow together nicely.
Lesson Three – Give Thanks
My 4th period students making hand turkeys.
We will not be in school next week as we take a break for the Thanksgiving holiday…so don’t come to school, cause I won’t be here. Have a great Thanksgiving everyone.
In the past week we have been focusing on writing professional letters. We have been using this method of writing to contact schools, local businesses, and leaders in our community to help us with several upcoming projects that we have going on. Students have been working together on service learning projects and have discovered how useful the art of writing actually is.
In my AVID class, we recently finished up our mandala project in which students were asked to draw a Mandala and complete an essay along the same lines of the drawing. Maṇḍala is a word that means “circle”. In the Hindu and Buddhist religious traditions their sacred art often takes a mandala form. In class students were asked to create a mandala using symbols that are important in their lives. The picture above is from Aubrey who choose to use her faith as the focus of her mandala and use secondary items of importance to surround the focus point.
Monday in our AVID class, we took some time to talk about college and admission to college. Students started out the period by brainstorming about what they already know about the requirements for college and then we discussed the various types of prep and admission tests for college. Students were given one of five college prep tests and asked to review their given test. After students were familiar with their test they were then given a game called “find somebody”. In this game students move around the room looking for students that have answers to their questions about the various college admission tests. At the end of the day this was a very worthwhile activity as many of the students acquired knowledge about the process of applying to college.
On Friday we took our much awaited trip to Kansas City to attend the AVID leadership conference and watch Sporting Kansas City play the Philadelphia Union. The trip was a great success, while there our students got the opportunity to meet other AVID students from around the region and take part in some fun games and activities while we were there…and don’t forget about the 9 hours of quality time that we spent together on the bus. Here are some of the photos from Friday’s action, enjoy.
On September 23rd we will be traveling to Kansas City for a AVID Leadership Conference. During our time in KC we will attend a conference with AVID teachers and students from the 4 state area and later that evening we will attend a soccer match between Sporting Kansas City and the Philadelphia Union. The document above gives all of the details for this evening.