MASSENA — The Massena Central School District will add an elementary summer school program this year in addition to its regular middle and high school offerings.
“The goal is to create and implement an elementary summer school that engages students in hands-on, project-based learning activities while learning and connecting foundational skills. This project-based approach will also be used in the college,” Superintendent Patrick H. Brady said.
Director of Student Support Services Danielle J. Chapman said the elementary effort will be called the Summer Raider Academy and will focus on two things – the academic needs of students, while providing fun, engaging and project-based.
Ms Chapman said she would meet with teachers to analyze student data to determine where students are doing academically. Once they’ve determined their status, K-3 teachers will come together to “create these activities that meet student needs so they can make fun centers and activities, but also learn things.” what they need for the next step. school year.”
Teachers in grades four through six will meet with a retired project-based learning presenter to come up with a project for the summer that will contain all the standards students need for the next grade.
“Our learning will certainly be focused on building the student’s sense of belonging in primary school. They don’t have to be there, but we want them to be there. So we really need to make sure the environment is a positive, fun and engaging environment, and we will make sure to do that,” Ms Chapman said.
Instruction will focus on reading, writing, math, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math). Clarkson’s mentors will come in for a week-long math camp with teachers and students in grades four through six, she said.
They will focus on students with the highest needs.
“We want to expose them to the priority standards they need for the next level,” she said.
The Summer Raider Academy will be held from 8:30 a.m. to noon Monday through Thursday July 5-29 at Jefferson Elementary School.
“We know that we have children who come to school before 8:30. They can then sit down and have breakfast and we will have the teaching assistants there,” Ms Chapman said.
JW Leary High School Principal Amanda J. Zullo said she will use Edmentum, an online learning program for some studies, as well as project-based learning.
“At this point, I have our professional learning communities of teachers going through and going through the classes that the children have taken in previous years. They identify the standards that have been prioritized and ensure that the summer course standards are aligned with the prioritized standards taught in the content areas. They also identify various aspects of the standards that would lend themselves more naturally to potential projects,” she said.
Ms Zullo said most junior high students who attend summer school are enrolled in more than one course.
“We prioritized in order math, ELA (English language arts), modern language, science and then social studies. Project-based learning would allow us to have a somewhat interdisciplinary approach in the event that a child could only take three or two lessons. They would still get some of the content they need,” she said.
She said more than 160 students attended last year’s summer school and they completed 386 courses. They anticipate, based on projections from previous years, that they will have about 50 to 60 students per year this summer.
This year’s sessions will run from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. July 5-22.
Stephanie L. Allen, director of curriculum, instruction and assessments for the district, said the high school’s summer school will continue to use an online model she implemented during of the past three years. Students will be located in the 800 wing of the high school.
“We’ve had success with it in that there’s just a bit of a different carrot at the end. They have to pass this Regents, they have to graduate in August, maybe they want to take an enrichment course. All of these things are on a higher level and have a bit more at stake, so our students are more engaged in Edmentum than maybe our younger ones,” she said.
Ms Allen said the success rate continued to rise.
“They are figuring it out. Our students are getting more and more used to taking their courses online and finding out how to do it on an online forum. So we think we are now at a tipping point. We now have a program in place and we can move forward,” she said.
The summer school for high school students will run from July 25 to August 26, starting at 9 a.m. and ending at noon. She said they estimate 150 to 165 students will attend.